Sail Date: February 2019
The shows were the best part. The performers were very talented The cruise director kept the entertainment flowing well The staff was accommodating when asked. The dining experience was poor in the dining room. A few too many ... Read More
The shows were the best part. The performers were very talented The cruise director kept the entertainment flowing well The staff was accommodating when asked. The dining experience was poor in the dining room. A few too many cold over cooked foods for our small group of four One guest needed special food preparations due to food allergies The food was not prepared as well as it had been on other ships The choices were limited and were often served plain without flavor We booked 3 excursions through Carnival basically bus tours due to the mobility of one of our group. These tours always depend on the tour guide you get Unfortunately we did not luck out with oue San Juan tour. He was not very good.not engaging at all Our guide in St Kitts was informative and you felt at ease to ask questions The last was of St Martin the bus driver as well as the tour guide were very good. Our trip was wonderful I hope when The Sunshine starts sailing out of Charleston the dining will improve Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
I did not chose. My brother did and we went with him. He choose this trip for 2 reasons. 1 It was in the Eastern Caribbean 2 It had a cabin type 4j we had good weather, the food was good, but not great. the entertainment was ok. I ... Read More
I did not chose. My brother did and we went with him. He choose this trip for 2 reasons. 1 It was in the Eastern Caribbean 2 It had a cabin type 4j we had good weather, the food was good, but not great. the entertainment was ok. I liked the Sunshine better than the Dream or the Libertyonly thing that I did not know was the cabin was a handicap room until I paid my final payment. Because it did have a larger bathroom but it is not a good room to make into a king size bed. our room was 7103. most of the food seems bland, it is like they try too hard to make fancy food. It would be nice if they had some just plain food. besides burgers. The soft serve ice cream is bad. I have not found it to be good on any of the previous 5 cruises I have taken. I have traveled with 3 different cruise lines. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I have always bragged to others about the quality and variety of food on the Carnival Menu and buffets. BUT on the Sunshine it was the worst food ever encountered on a cruise ship. Our food was cold, crusty, and dried. The salads were ... Read More
I have always bragged to others about the quality and variety of food on the Carnival Menu and buffets. BUT on the Sunshine it was the worst food ever encountered on a cruise ship. Our food was cold, crusty, and dried. The salads were browned lettuce and soups were cold. The service was extremely slow and not acceptable at all. We are both diamond VIP members with Carnival. We have sailed on over two hundred cruises and most every cruise line. We understand that booking with different cruise lines you will experience different types of food, however, cold, tasteless, no quality food is unacceptable regardless of the cruise line. The Carnival product has greatly deteriorated and is not at all like previous Carnival cruises we have experienced on most every cruise ship in their fleet! We are very concerned that this ship does not follow ADA guidelines. It was one of the most unfriendly to handicapped passengers in wheelchairs and the guests were unwilling to share the elevators even though the US law states that wheelchair passengers have first priority in the elevator use. Fellow passengers are getting more and more antagonistic toward those who cannot walk and must use a wheelchair as well as the cruise ship staff! It is interesting to note that Carnival is changing the booking mechanism for handicapped cabins. They have gone from wheelchair cabins with roll in showers to calling the same exact cabin a "walker" cabin thereby eliminating the need to accommodate wheelchair guests. It is blatant discrimination. We will carefully review our choices for cruising this year and go back to cruise line whose product we can trust. Carnival product is no longer the same. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
My husband and I just returned from a 13 day journeys cruise aboard the Sunshine. We typically have rain a good portion of our vacation and were pleasantly surprised to only have rain two half days. The ship itself is in great shape for ... Read More
My husband and I just returned from a 13 day journeys cruise aboard the Sunshine. We typically have rain a good portion of our vacation and were pleasantly surprised to only have rain two half days. The ship itself is in great shape for its age. The crew went out of their way to make the cruise special. We visited 7 islands - St. Thomas, Aruba, Curacao, St. Marteen, St. Kitts, San Juan, and Amber Cove. We had been to all of these ports except Amber Cove. I turned platinum on this cruise and enjoyed all the perks - chocolate covered strawberries, a free blanket throw, 5 bags of free laundry, priority boarding and disembarkation, and a free drink. The shows on board were all pretty good. My husband and I enjoyed the comedy shows the most and averaged two shows most days. The Love & Marriage Show dragged on too long. It took almost 45 minutes to pick the contestants. We ate most dinners (10 of the 13 nights) in the main dining room with Any Time Dining. We never had to wait over 5 or 10 minutes for a table. Most nights we were in and out in about an hour and 15 minutes. We typically ate early (around 5:15). We only paid to eat one meal and that was at the sushi restaurant. Sushi for two with tip was around $25. We booked all excursions on our own. There were a few things that irritated me. Number 1 - the free drink. You have to get it either at breakfast or lunch and only in the main dining room. I went three times before I even found the dining room open during these times. One time breakfast was over and lunch hadn't started. Another time lunch was already over. ( I know it is free and you shouldn't look a gift horse in the mouth, but get real, it is a $9.50 drink!) Number 2 - No refrigerator. This is the first time I have ever cruised a big cruise line with no refrigerator. Number 3 - making you choose morning or evening service of your cabin. We chose morning but our steward still serviced it twice a day but you could tell he was overextended doing so. Shame on Carnival for putting him in this position. I think each steward services over 30 rooms. Number 4 - Disembarkation was a nightmare. It took us over two hours with priority and we just made our flight by 10 minutes and yes it was an afternoon flight. Overall, I will still sail on Carnival again but will give other cruise lines equal consideration. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
I have almost 25 cruises under my belt, I have cruise the sunshine three times this year, I keep me coming back for more. I can’t get enough of the Motown celebration and Mardi Gras night to name a few. The entertainment staff is ... Read More
I have almost 25 cruises under my belt, I have cruise the sunshine three times this year, I keep me coming back for more. I can’t get enough of the Motown celebration and Mardi Gras night to name a few. The entertainment staff is awesome they keeps you on the edge of your seat. The dining room staff are very attentive and appear eager to meet your needs, it is amazing that they can call you by name. Shout out to Mikey, one of the best cruise directors I have ever seen and the DJ aboard the ship was awesome. As we sailed away l observed all the passengers aboard The Royal Caribbean packed to one side of their ship, it looked like they were wishing they were aboard Carnival Sunshine, the Dj shouted out Who cares about how much noise we make, we’re out on the ocean and the song played “turn down for what “. The staff aboard the ship were awesome, in the dining area the Casino and house keeping. I'm currently planning to return to the Sunshine again in May 2019 and I have a back to back cruise planned for December 2019 aboard the Panorama out of Los Angeles. Any reason to go on cruise, is a good reason, as I continue on the hunt for more delightful times at sea! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had never been to Aruba before and were looking forward to it. I had researched the Sunshine and had read some bad things but I also new that the ship was going to dry dock before this ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had never been to Aruba before and were looking forward to it. I had researched the Sunshine and had read some bad things but I also new that the ship was going to dry dock before this cruise so it should be in pretty good shape. Then we heard the news about the issues the ship had on the cruises coming out of dry dock and it had us a little worried but I also knew that Carnival would address the issues. This cruise was incident free for us. The Sunshine is a remodeled ship and is unlike any other carnival ship we have been on, from reading previous reviews I was ready for the different ship arrangement. On most Carnival ships when you leave your cabin you just have to think what deck your destination is on and you can take any elevator to get there. Not the Sunshine for this ship you not only have to think about what deck your destination is on but also what elevator you need to get on to get there. Just getting on any elevator will not get you there. Some of the elevators also will take you to the Sports Court or the Serenity area but only if you push the proper up call button, there are 2 up call buttons for some of the elevators and those elevators will not stop on your floor if you do not push the proper up button. It took us a couple days to figure this out, until we figured it out we thought the elevators just had a mind of their own and was part of the entertainment. Because of these reasons the elevators are always busy all the time. I was also surprised at the size of the public areas, they were smaller than other large ships. There is no theater, just a lounge where they have the musical review shows, Liquid Lounge, and the lounge where the comedians are, Limelight Lounge. The public areas being smaller gives the ship the feel of a smaller ship that is crowded. The serenity area on the Sunshine is one of the best I have experienced it is large, spans 3 decks and has its own pool, hot tub and water fall, like all of Carnival's serenity areas they are popular and you have to get there early to get one of the better locations, but we could always find someplace to set in this area that was shady with as much privacy as you can expect with 3000 people on board. The Sunshine has all of the restaurants that Carnival currently offers on its ships except for Guy's Pig and Anchor barbeque. All of the food we had on board was very good. The Lido buffet was small but it is forward of the Havana Bar, The Italian restaurant and the Asian restaurant and all of these locations also serve food during lunch and breakfast and their seating areas are available to the buffet, so we never had an issue finding someplace to sit. The only specialty restaurant we tried was the steak restaurant and it was worth the extra amount of $38.00. We had a great experience there. The main dining room was very good and we enjoyed all of the food we tried. The waiter's and waitresses were very good but also very busy. My favorite part of this ship was the crew, they were very welcoming and always had a smile on their face and willing to speak to you and greet you. Another surprising thing also was the availability of live music around the ship. Besides the musical review shows I am accustomed to live singers, pianists and such being around the ship playing music in the atrium and other places during the day, especially on sea days. This type of music didn't usually start until 5PM and by the time we ate dinner and took in a performance by a comedian or watched a show, they were usually on break so we saw very little of the individual performers. The movies on the big screen were good and we enjoyed watching a couple of these at night during the cruise. We had a balcony stateroom that was on deck six and it was nice, had plenty of storage a refrigerator and a great balcony. Our stateroom steward was wonderful, never disturbed us and always seemed to know when we were in or out of our stateroom so he could clean it. He also did a great job and he was great with the towel animals and always greeted us by name when he saw us around the ship. Our stateroom number was 6227 and it was between the forward and mid elevators so, it was convenient to everywhere. It was also quiet. The bed was comfy and we slept well. The cruise director was Mikey and he was great and very entertaining and he made himself very available all the time. I am a veteran and Mikey did a great tribute to the Military and first responders that was attended very well. We did not particularly like the layout of the ship but we had a great time. I do not consider embarkation and debarkation to be cruising because it is always a horrible experience. With the way Carnival does embarkation now if you arrive during your assigned check in time then it is a fairly smooth process, if you arrive early or late you are toast, long lines await the early and late. For debarkation it did not go as smoothly as possible, For the self debarkation or express debarkation which we did where you carry your own luggage. It didn't go as planned. They announced that everyone was to be off the ship by 9 am and then they took forever, they had to call your deck number before you could go to the lobby to get off the ship and this took forever. We finally got off at 8:45 AM which is not bad, but they had not called all the decks and then they were going to have to call zone numbers for the ones who checked their baggage. we had also gotten up early because we knew that they would start debarkation at 7AM and we thought we would be able to leave the ship as soon as they got the FTTF, platinum, diamond and suite people off. So we waited longer than usual due to having to wait for our deck number. We only did one excursion and this was at Grand Turk. We had been to Grand Turk several times and decided to do the "Home Sweet Home" excursion. This is where they take you to a beach house and everything is included, drinks, water toys and they also serve you lunch and it is a smaller group probably about 30 people. This was a great excursion, the staff was attentive and available and they were on the beach taking drink orders and letting you know when the food was ready. The beach was sandy and beautiful. Overall the cruise was great with only the ship layout being a negative. Aruba by the way is beautiful, we walked around the town, had a drink at Iquana Joe's and ate dinner at the Old Fisherman, a great seafood restaurant that is right off the cruise port. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We selected this cruise because it was an 8 day to ports we had never visited before. We love the Alchemy Bar. Our only disappointment was that there was no real "dance" band. Good musicians if you just wanted to sit and ... Read More
We selected this cruise because it was an 8 day to ports we had never visited before. We love the Alchemy Bar. Our only disappointment was that there was no real "dance" band. Good musicians if you just wanted to sit and listen. The DJ was very good, but never seemed to be in any of the venues we visited. The food was the standard Carnival fare, but great, as always. And our wait staff and service was amazing - from the hostesses to the waiters - always smiling and professional. Our favorite shore excursion was the sunset catamaran cruise in Aruba. Our cabin mates also enjoyed the snorkeling trips in both Aruba and Curacao. We had been to Grand Turk several times, so opted to have the token margarita and nachos at Margaritaville, and didn't do any excursions there. Overall, it was a great experience. Personally, I prefer the smaller ships because I'm not into rope walks or water features. But the Serenity Deck on Sunshine is one of the best around. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
sailed on sunshine before . wanted to go back . This cruise was ; the cruise from hell. Whatever could go wrong , did. Major problem was FTTF. Delayed on check-in, boarded with non FTTF guest. No stickers put on cabin cards waited in long ... Read More
sailed on sunshine before . wanted to go back . This cruise was ; the cruise from hell. Whatever could go wrong , did. Major problem was FTTF. Delayed on check-in, boarded with non FTTF guest. No stickers put on cabin cards waited in long line at front desk to get them put on. confirmed Reservations for dinner not honored. when talked to dining staff, told them of reservations made a year ago, they just dismissed me and said sorry. Cabin was not ready when we boarded plus the air was not working. took two days to get it working half way . Luggage arrived after everyone on our floor got theirs; then 2 pieces didn't show up until very late in the day. the only thing that worked on FTTF was getting off the ship. We are repeat cruisers on Carnival and unfortunately, we noticed how their service has gone downhill over the last 3 years. Before that , the service was excellent. Carnival should be more honest with people who purchase FTTF . Tell them that not all aspects of it work. For people who purchase it just to get on and get off quicker, more power to them, I will no longer waste my money on a program where only one or two of the perks work. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
The embarkation in Port Canaveral was very organized but anything that went smooth all week was quickly forgotten today during disembarkation. We were in port for over 4 hours before the "carry your own luggage off" group was ... Read More
The embarkation in Port Canaveral was very organized but anything that went smooth all week was quickly forgotten today during disembarkation. We were in port for over 4 hours before the "carry your own luggage off" group was called to leave. There were no explanations or updates about the delay from the cruise director , "Jess from the U.S." Many passengers were yelling down to deck 3 asking for info. It was 5.25 hours before deck 8 was called. By then hundreds had taken their chances on exiting with the groups with luggage. The "Chefs Table" was fabulous as always. We loved the food and the host, Lama. Too, too much food but it was wonderful. Our wait staff, Leonilde (sp) and Rhoman in the Sunset Dining Room were great all week. I try to avoid the buffet but enjoyed breakfast/brunch in the Sunrise Dining Room. I was disappointed in the room service menu: my favorites were either removed or are now "extras". Breakfast on the balcony has been a big plus in the past. We enjoyed The evening shows in the Liquid Lounge .The Epic Rock production was one of the best I've ever seen on board any cruise line. We also enjoyed the meeting to honor veterans. We chose our excursion in Aruba based on previous reviews (ages 55-65+) but did not enjoy the Kukoo Kunuku party bus . There was a much younger crowd that night. The bars and restaurant we went to were in questionable areas at best. Some had security guards to escort us from the bus into the building. Most of the places had no other patrons besides the Carnival excursion. The mystery drinks served were free but strange tasting so we switched early on to bottled beer.I was very happy to get back to the ship. There wasn't a lot to do on sea days besides shop the usual trinkets and port needs. The jewelry was beautiful but browsing the display cases is impossible without the constant hovering . .....the fastest way to run me off. My enthusiasm for a rare stone was squelched quickly and I never returned. I will persue it locally. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We chose this particular cruise because we like sea days and it was a nice 8 night trip to Aruba and back with stops in Curacao, and Grand Turk. First the shows--okay not a lot of sets, but AMAZING back screen technology which at times ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise because we like sea days and it was a nice 8 night trip to Aruba and back with stops in Curacao, and Grand Turk. First the shows--okay not a lot of sets, but AMAZING back screen technology which at times were actually stunning. major shows were Motown tribute, 70's, and Rock. At times a little too loud for my tastes and the sound tech should lower a couple of the performers mics as they distorted their voices. Otherwise, high energy, lots of costumes, and if you can it sit there without your feet tapping during the Rock show, there may be no blood running in your system. Yes, I gave that one a standing ovation and I am 70 ! But if you looking for Broadway or softer sounds, then you will be disappointed. Can not understand the low reviews on the food. Lots to choose from...but warning the main dining room only offers a couple of special choices on nights other the elegant night (2 of them). But one elegant night did include lobster and the other a petit filet and rib combo which was cooked medium rare perfectly and was tender and juicy. The other nights we did the buffet which offered great selections that changed every night. For lunch there not only is the main buffet on deck 9 and a mini buffet in the Ocean Plaza on deck 5..choices as good as the evening. Then there are two other locations outside : one severing Mexican ( I got chicken burritos) and another featuring freshly cooked burgers and seasoned fries...both delicious. Then add fresh baked pizzas and a deli...I thought it was top notch. The staff was smiling, friendly and were clearing plates quite rapidly. The staff in all departments were very nice, but I also think it partially begins with you. You are on a cruise to have fun, so start by smiling yourself at the staff and other cruisers . It is contatgious! The Cruise director Emma was aray of sunshine, but sadly will be moving to a new ship, but we met the new CD on the last night who seemed fun as well. Yes, accents could be a challenge at the trivias, but that makes it fun if you have the right attitude. And on Carnival the trivias truly are very lay back. On the other Carnival ships we were on (smaller ones), we were always disappointed at where the live band played, usually outside the casino and the "dance floor" was in the walkway ! ..a real challenge as we love to dance. But here the Sunshine has a designated area in Ocean Plaza on deck 5..lots of seating, and a nice dance area. Caught in the Act was the main band and were very good BUT for my taste they could get VERY LOUD. For my wife and I, who try to dance non-stop to every song, EAR PLUGS are always a MUST. Also the outdoor movie screen worked very well-super picture and good sound. Yes, we found a time when the rope course was open and we two 70 year olds made it trough, but I must admit there were a couple of tense moments. Not for the faint hearted, but with just a little guts , you can do it. As far as the ports go, we always try to find out of the way spots while riding the local public bus. ON Aruba we want all the way out to Arashi Beach, which when we were there 15 years ago was TOTALLY secluded, now there is a small shop and more people but not as crowded as other beaches. Snorkle off to the left, very shallow, but lots of fish around the rock and coral. Plus you can walk over the the Colorado Lighthouse which is on most tours....Curacao, went to a really hidden place called Tugboat Cove. Take the local bus to Caracasbaai -ask to get off at Caracasbaai Beach, but then you will walk about 15 minutes past Caracasbaai Beach and keep heading towards the two large ships..you will eventually get there. Bus costs hardly anything. Finally there is the curise terminal beach which is very nice BUT if you like seclusion walk all the way down the beach, just past Jack's Shack cut up towards the road (you will walk through an old lot) then walk to the left to a stone wall-turn left and you will end up at a secluded beach at the Mega 1 Triton ship which ran aground (you can see it from the ship)..snorkling is nice -nothing super but lots of fish..and NO ONE but us were there until a tour bus stopped by for a few minutes. ONE BIG NOTE: if you have an arrival time for embarkation...arrive ON TIME and you will not have to wait hardly at all outside the terminal. Arrive early or late and you get into a long line. Read Less
Carnival Sunshine Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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