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114 Carnival Sydney (Australia) Cruise Reviews

The guys in the dinning room that looked after us GUSTI, WAYAN AND WIJAYA where so good to us made our experience wonderful great service and could not ask for better service thank you guys we will miss your great smiles The cubin we ... Read More
The guys in the dinning room that looked after us GUSTI, WAYAN AND WIJAYA where so good to us made our experience wonderful great service and could not ask for better service thank you guys we will miss your great smiles The cubin we had some problems with the toilet did not flash for the first 2 days we asked for some one to fix it but it was still not flushing when we complained the third time it was fixed the fridge in the room did not work and the ship swaied so much that I could hardly sleep Intertainment was great fun we really enjoyed it just wish it was less movement in the cubin that was the most disappointing part of the cruise... I would like to travel again with carnival if the price was right and the cabin was not so ruf my family also traveled with me but because of the last experience they would rather try a different ship or cruise and Sertenly not at the tail of the ship it was not the best I've ever had I travel with ships before and I must say this ship was not for the weak stumik any way hope you take my review quite series and please reward those guys in the dinning room service they were amazing .... Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Did basically the same cruise almost 4 years ago,on the same ship,and after having a fabulous time on that cruise,that we decided we would do the same cruise again. What a huge disappointment it was.Previously we had an Oceanview Cabin,but ... Read More
Did basically the same cruise almost 4 years ago,on the same ship,and after having a fabulous time on that cruise,that we decided we would do the same cruise again. What a huge disappointment it was.Previously we had an Oceanview Cabin,but this time we had just an indoor cabin.Huge mistake!!!Our cabin was directly below the Operations Room for the Gaming Room.No problem whatsoever with the Gaming Room noise,other than a staff member who insisted on wearing stilettos all night,every night,on floorboards.One night the clunk,clunk,clunking didn't cease until 2:00am ,and then two nights later until 4:00am.On a whole,we didn't get any ( decent) sleep until two nights before we returned to Port in Sydney.We complained about the continual noise to the ' Guest Services Desk",who kindly arranged for two different Staff Members to enter our cabin on two different occasions to evaluate the noise above us,and on both occasions I was lying on the bed crying my eyes out.They both agreed there was an issue with the noise above ,and approached the Staff Member in Gaming,who contributed to the noise.The Staff Member in Gaming stated that she has a job to do ,which we wholeheartedly agreed with,but we felt she could have offered to change her style of shoe she wore to a much quieter sole of her shoe.After deliberation,we were offered another cabin,on Deck 7,at the back of the ship.On inspection,we declined the offer,as it was directly in line with the propellor,and made as much noise(whirring) as we were already experiencing.Finally,onboard credit was offered but it didn't come anywhere near the inconvenience we experienced.The Cabin number was 1193.We,needless to say,was bitterly disappointed with the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Travelled 30/04/19 nights to new Caledonia Dad- 40yrs second time on a cruise (first with P&O) Positives Good value Great for kids and young families Plenty to do Photos are an upsell but they do it well Ship ... Read More
Travelled 30/04/19 nights to new Caledonia Dad- 40yrs second time on a cruise (first with P&O) Positives Good value Great for kids and young families Plenty to do Photos are an upsell but they do it well Ship is meticulously clean and well maintained Negatives Some closed spaces funnelling people place to place. No late night stage shows for mum and dads only No alcohol or barista coffee packages. Passive smoking outside in the quiet areas no matter where you go. Can be hard to get your hands on a decent coffee without walking very far. Ships layout and staff setup/designed to get more money out of you. Upsell Upsell Upsell My review Having read some recent negative reviews but still deciding to book a cruise on the carnival spirit I'm still glad I did but personally wouldn't do so again. I still had a good time (not great) even if It's a bit of a mixed bag. I ticked the box for a family cruise and it's mostly what I got. (wife and 2 kids 6/3yr old) Ship - ships decor is old and a very weird mix of styles! You can definitely tell it what once was probably nicely themed is now a miss mash of styles as over the years of refurbishment it now looks tired and does not draw you in to feel like you are somewhere special. Ship went a Australian refit once apon a time but is largely American still with pictures, paintings and even the big screen advertising what's on has lots photos of overseas people enjoying themselves. It just leaves an overseas eclectic impression and taste about it all and nothing home grown about it. Which is a real shame as It would be outstanding, it really needs to bring a southern land flavour. Many times (but not always) i smelt the stacks diesel or cigarette smoke through some of the lifts and corridors which wasn't plesent. (never in cabins) Rooms were spotless and beds comfy. Watersides were a hoot! But you can still smell diesel burning from those iconic fins from them. Guests - guests were mostly Australian and everyone had a great time mixing and getting to know each other and no idiots mucking about. Think good ole RSL crowd..it's mix of kids thru to oldies and young mums and dads. If that's your thing great :) (it was mine) but if your single and looking to score or meet someone special for fun times your on the wrong ship..other wise everyone is a well behaved fun loving crowd. Food - can't fault the food except the free pizza and ice cream. Pizza can be either burnt or very oily and ice-cream runny alot if the time Just roll the dice on those ones... Drinks - SHIP DOES NOT HAVE AN ALCOHOL OR BARISTA BEVERAGE PACK which is WEIRD.. but prices are very reasonable and they don't skimp on LIQUOR when mixing your drink. Negative is that they will mix coke and coke no sugar in the same drink so if aspartame is a bad taste for you then it might be a problem..even if you ask for just coca cola they will still mix them. Barista made coffee is not perfect if you like it strong, and if you ask for an extra shot they look at you strange and tell you to just get the next size up.. Staff - Always professional but many have ZERO personality about them. Don't always expect a warm genuine hello or a big smile, more like a robotic tone.. These folks work very hard 7 days a week for around 7m of the year and many seem tired, you may find about a few dozen of the 900 odd staff onboard that love a chat but not always but when you do its refreshing. One thing I will say is it's very frustrating that many speak broken English so are hard to understand or they find it difficult to understand you it's very frustrating as you have to ask them to repeat what they said. I have even seen the occasional staff to staff chatter they had an issue understanding each other as well as there is a mix of different nationality/languages between them. Please do remember that they are always remain professional and they do their job well. Entertainment - All activities (and there are a lot) are always amazing good ole fun, the DJs are on always point with music a definite credit to them and the fellow acoustic guitar and piano players around the ship are awesome. However the stage shows (which I personally look forward to) are the like high school musicals.. Or rock estedfords. If you have cruised before on P&O knowing how well they are at stage shows you will be very disappointed with carnival. Dancers and acting are good but the shows are designed for family's no wow factor and very cheesy at times in my opinion. Kids, teens will love it tho and they are everywhere but most adults in the crowd like me were pretty bored. The comideans after 10.30pm were OK. The cruise director and various entertainment leaders are all a mix of UK and Americans so you will find themes for their shows that are just a bit too worldly and not really suited for Australians or my tastes anyway.. Water Slides are awesome, even for the adults!! And the kids really loved the Dr suess activities. The 18+ only adult retreat is small and nothing special with a small pool and SPA Main pool deck area is split into 2 areas its honestly its a bit cramped but 1/2 is covered which is handy on rainy days. The second pool area is always quiet but everyone is allowed to light up around one side so it reeks of cigarettes. In my opinion they should make it smoking upstairs on the balcony only. Movies shown on the big screen are great but sound is cranked up waaay too loud noticed by many and pop corn is plain.. (not cinema buttered quality) They have a night owls camp for kids so mums and dads can enjoy a night out but just don't expect anything spectacular on stage for entertainment.... It's pretty ordinary plus they don't deal with toddlers not toilet trained very well.. Just call you to collect or at the first sign of trouble. Shopping - prices good /staff great seemed very popular but it's not my thing so I can't really comment. Rooms - we had a family stateroom Its not large but very well setup and it's really all you need. Beds are super duper comfy. Only negative is aircon barely works. Spa and salon - obviously different strokes for different folks but I found it frustrating as I just wanted a haircut and neck and back massage.. Simple right? Well nope.. I had to fill out a complicated form and was being sold package treatments only that included all the fancy stuff for fingers and toes. Staff just didn't seem approachable on getting something simple and basic. Kids club - kids club seems to be setup very well, just remember that the staff there are babysitters/child minders and not nanny's. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
If you are a family with kids, and have not cruised before, you will have a good holiday, and some elements were handled very well. However Carnival overall simply does not meet the standards set by other cruise lines we have experienced ... Read More
If you are a family with kids, and have not cruised before, you will have a good holiday, and some elements were handled very well. However Carnival overall simply does not meet the standards set by other cruise lines we have experienced EMBARKATION was quicker than other lines, and bags were also at our cabin more quickly. The ship is kept beautifully clean, but the decor is a jumbled cacophony of Art Deco, Egyptian, Chinese, Renaissance, Mexican, and any other theme the drunken decorator could come up with. Layout is easy - most public entertainment areas, bars, dining and activities on decks 2, 3, 9 & 10, and clear guides throughout. CABIN is good - slightly more storage and bathroom space than interior cabins on other ships. Main problem with layout - the Adults Only Serenity Retreat was right below the water-slides: shrieking children are not our idea of serenity! DINING was fine for kids, but not up to the standard we are accustomed to on other lines. I would like to say before I review the food, that our dining room team of three waiters gave fantastic service - nothing was too much trouble for them, and they were wonderful with the kids. The La Playa buffet food was mediocre, and mostly the same menu items day after day after day at breakfast, salad bar, sandwich, pie, sausage and pizza stations. The only variations were at the one outlet serving the meals such as curries or fish dishes, and the sweets bar, with new selections each day. The quality of the food overall there was a little lower than the "All you can eat" at our local club. After hours, the ONLY food available is greasy pizza, unless you want to pay for room service. Not even a crummy pre-wrapped biscuit to have with your cuppa. The Empire Dining Room food was better, but not fantastic. (Example, a "Tower of Leek and broccoli" on the menu, was a couple of overdone pieces squished into a tiny dish). Several times the signature dessert of Melting Chocolate cake arrived at the table as a ramekin of uncooked cake mix. Chef's Table was our main disappointment of the cruise. On every other cruise Chef's Table has been an amazing fine dining experience, with an elegant private dining room, beautiful china and glassware, incredible food with matching wines, and good conversation. In comparison, the Carnival Chef's Table, at the same price as other lines, was a MEDIOCRE JOKE. * Appetisers eaten standing up, served on sharp plastic spoons, and so rushed we barely swallowed one before the next was there. * Entire CT served in the galley, with a tablecloth thrown over a table so big we could not talk to any other guests because they were too far away. We could not have talked to them anyway, because the din, shouting and clatter of the galley meant we could not have heard them. We also could not hear most of what the chef was saying as he explained each course. A galley tour and a CT are two completely different experiences, and do NOT belong together. * Food was good, but not of a standard we would expect from a CT. Pork belly was full of gristle, and the fat not rendered. De-boned quail was overdone and had a bone in it which hurt my husband's tooth (but the staff argued with him and basically told him he was wrong about this!). Meats had not been adequately rested, so plates were swimming in meat juices and blood. Cocoa content was so high in the choc desert it was dry and claggy and not possible to eat a whole serving. The bread, and the citrus dessert, were excellent. The food and presentation in Nouveau Restaurant were far closer to what we expected from a CT experience. * Every other CT has matched wines. CT on Spirit has the cheap house red and house white. As I do not drink, I was left with water, and never offered to obtain even a soft drink for me to go with the meal. We asked the waitress a question about the wine, and she had no clue. Asked if there was a sommelier and she said "What's that ?!" She really had no idea how to serve, and it turns out that the waitress assigned to CT (which is meant to be the pinnacle experience of dining on the ship) was on her first cruise! ACTIVITIES - Carnival is geared to young families, and did well for them. Our grandchildren (girl 7, boy 9) loved Kids Club - however the exorbitant cost of up to $50 for them to stay in the evenings if parents had an activity to attend was excessive - when our own children were with Royal Caribbean Kids Club it continued until 11 pm every night. The water-slides and pools were popular and they loved the Dr Seuss activities. Our adult kids report that many of the games in the Arcade were "stuffed" or faulty. As a family, we love the Trivia and games. These were of a similar standard to other cruises, except for one thing - on other ships, teams exchange papers for marking, while on Spirit, teams mark their own papers. This seems only a little thing, but while most people are honest and play fair, it became obvious that some teams were adding answers and doctoring their scores. This system means that the cheats often win, and those who play fair are penalised, which takes away some of the shine. When we tried to ask the crew member running the game to swap papers for scoring, it was refused, even though we also heard other cruisers making the same complaints about the cheats. Several times answers were wrong, and the quiz master said that "that question is wrong, but the boss won't let us change it", or allowed points for all answers given for those questions, or for teams who protested loudly that their wrong answers were correct. Games need to be fair for all playing. COMEDY CLUB was great overall, with three of the four comedians catering equally well for the PG and adult audiences. Michael Bennett, Jacques Barrett and Stephen J Whitely were outstanding. (The fourth, John Cruickshank, sadly appeared to feel that simply picking on audience members and unleashing a stream of F and C words was enough to make it a funny adult show - it is not.) THEATRE PERFORMANCES - on Royal Caribbean ships, we stay for the show almost every night, and these have been a variety of top class acts which we would be happy to pay full price for back home. A typical cruise would include specialist music acts, professional dance troupes, and variety performers such as hypnotists or magicians. On Carnival Spirit, the show every night was the same 4 male and 4 female dancers, simply singing and dancing a different theme each night - 80's, 90's etc). They worked very hard, but did not come close to the standard of any acts seen on our previous 4 cruises. We tried going to several shows, but lost interest and left again after a few minutes. There was one act of a magician / escape artist which was quite good, I think she was part of the crew as the 8 regular dancers were part of her show. DANCING- hubby and I love to dance, and always seek out the best live music on cruises to dance in the evenings, however Spirit seems to almost actively discourage the idea of couples dancing, even though they promote this on their website. In the Red Frog Pub, there is a very small dance floor, but the music is mostly rock (the 3 man band is very good). So we headed to the central lobby, where a duo plays easy listening tunes and there is another small dance floor. We dance Ceroc (a mix of Swing and Modern Jive) which needs a fairly fast tempo. However, whenever we got up to dance to a quick song, this duo would immediately change back to slow music, even if we were the only couple dancing, and specifically requested some faster songs. A few other cruisers even noticed this happening and commented to us about it. We could occasionally dance to the excellent guitarist at the Alchemy Bar, but the dance floor there is about the size of a dining table! The cruise activities also included a Salsa and a Ballroom dance class, but the instructor (one of the show dancers) pushed the class so fast that even as fairly experienced dancers we struggled to keep up, and most of the guests were hopelessly bewildered. SERVICE was great overall - the majority of staff went out of their way to be welcoming and helpful. However, the few times we raised an issue with a staff member, the response was to argue with us and tell us why we were wrong!! The waiter we spoke to about the bone at Chef's Table took the plate away, then brought it back (without bone chip) and tried to show us that it was just pepper on the plate. When we arrived for a booked lunch in Nouveau, we told the waitress that we would like to try and get to another event after our lunch, and would like to order quickly. We then waited 20 minutes without service, and when we called her over and asked again if we could order, she told us this was Nouveau and we should not expect a quick service or lunch !! SHORE EXCURSIONS - like all cruise lines, the shore excursions are exorbitantly priced, with a minimum 150% mark-up over the same tours booked with local companies. Unless you have mobility issues, or want to go a long way from the ship, and need the guarantee that the ship will wait for you if delayed, do your own thing. There are plenty of affordable and interesting options available, often identical to the ship tours. On Isle of Pines, our $20 local bus tour travelled in convoy with the $50 ship tour bus (and we got an extra stop, as the ship bus was too big to get down the road to Queen Hortense’s Cave). Carnival Spirit is fine for a cheap casual family holiday with young kids, but as discerning cruisers with a love of good food and entertainment we will be returning to Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We'd just finished our Tasmanian cruise in March and were back aboard Spirit April 11th to New Caledonia. This was 8-nights and we travelled with about 30 friends including their kids. Check-in was much smoother as we found ... Read More
We'd just finished our Tasmanian cruise in March and were back aboard Spirit April 11th to New Caledonia. This was 8-nights and we travelled with about 30 friends including their kids. Check-in was much smoother as we found Carnival no longer takes passengers' photos rather now relying on the passport photo so check-in is smoother. We also found that the Carnival check-in so now closer to the start of process. We were onboard quickly and our Sail and Sign cards were ready reaonably quickly. As we'd been on only a couple of weeks ago, a number of staff recognised us so it was good to know that I'd had a positive impact on some of the staff during my previous cruise. As we were travelling with mostly cruise and Carnival newbies, we'd show our friends around On this cruise, I found Carnival wi-fi to have been flaky often dropping my connection. I don't get an internet package but I always get the chat option for $9 but found it too unreliable this time. We went to the sail away show which was ordinary but the performers must be getting over doing the same shows each week. The island night show was OK which was called Getaway Island or something. I'd probably had too many blanc de blancs to remember. One of our cruise crew made it Lip Sync Battle and that was a great night. We did Nouveau yet again but I booked before boarding and got the confirmation. I went up there to change the booking as we decided to do Nouveau another night and they couldn't find the booking. I showed them the email confirmation. Anyway, no drama. This time we chose 5:30 dining as our friends travelled with children and I hear they like to eat early. This was our first early dining and it turned out pretty convenient actually. There was enough time to go to the shows and even have a quick power nap after dinner. Dinner was great and our wait team was headed by a great guy. Again, food was great all throughout. I had a couple of prawn burritos as well as a turkey BLT wrap from the deli as an example. One things I'd always had concerns for was the slippery tiles when they got wet. Once wet, these tiles turn into an ice-skating rink. I always thought it might have been my shoes causing me to often slide as I'd never seen anyone stack out but on this cruise, one of friends hit the deck in an area where I'd slip only moments beforehand. They were just in the process of cleaning as I went through there but our friend took a tumble monuments after. This was near the lobby bar and because the photographers set up along that area, it act as a choke point. Our friend was a little battered and Carnival had her x-rayed but she hadn't broken anything. We arrived at Noumea on a Sunday and very little is open so I just walked around the town for a bit. Some of the others went on their own activities. I'd been to Noumea a few times before so I didn't feel compelled to do too much. Again, I'd noticed a number of bar staff would pour me the more expensive Scotch and in one case, pour me a double having never asked me what I wanted. I hadn't been served by this one bar waiter so he wouldn't have remembered that I'd have double every now and again. This was also earlier in the day. In any case, there were a few minor issues this cruise but we had pretty smooth sailing. The kids weren't too annoying and guests not too rude. This was also the second cruise where I'd didn't really go to Alchemy, a place I practically lived at on Legend and Spirit last year. I just didn't feel the vibe. Again, the Spirit class ships have a good passenger to space ratio and you'll always find a quiet area. I feel for a lot of the staff as they're on 7 days a week for 7 months have to endure petulant children and adults, the same music being piped in around the ships, the same guitarist for a few weeks and all for very little money. The staff are lucky if they get a few hours ashore. Some of them simply seemed disinterested, wanting to be elsewhere. Carnival have a very thin veil they need to maintain; the ship is supposed to be fun all 'round and when staff don't share those values, that façade quickly deteriorates and we get a glimpse as really how awful some of the staff have it. I'm still booked in for a 3-night June cruise but I'll be a lot more savvy booking future cruises with Carnival based on value rather than timing. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Embarkation went well, ship looks spectacular from the outside, and owing to it advertising it had had a recent refurb, our expectations were high. Assisted boarding was easy and pleasant. Cabin 8218 was lovely apart from the fact you ... Read More
Embarkation went well, ship looks spectacular from the outside, and owing to it advertising it had had a recent refurb, our expectations were high. Assisted boarding was easy and pleasant. Cabin 8218 was lovely apart from the fact you need 2 arms to open the door and also the door leading to balcony. My bed was very uncomfortable, pillows were good. Bathroom was well set out and the shower great. As we're our cabin staff. Disappointed in the lack of amenities for disabled passengers. The only electric operated doors I found was on deck 2. And then you had to hobble back to the door to lock. We saw many people at least in the over 70's age bracket. No grab rail in the bathroom, doors extremely heavy to open, grab rail in most toilets around the ship, low chairs everywhere. We spoke to senior passengers who had fallen, in their bathroom, in lounges, allegedly slipping on something. The decor was oppressive. So glitzy and dark, obviously dated. Maybe the refurb was eluding to the near new carpets in some areas. Entertainment was generally of a good standard. It was pleading to see that they had meet up groups for differing categories of people, including people from LGBTIQ groups. Good to know. I could not comment on the shore excursions but I can say I was very disappointed with the use of tender boats on Moorea. If we had been able to stay one more day in port at Papeete people with a disability could easily have used the ferry from Papeete. That would have been awesome. The distance between islands is miniscule! On the last 5 days at sea we were advised that sav blanc was running out and passengers had to now buy by the bottle and carry that around with you. When lodging a complaint with Guest Services we were informed there was no complaints forms. We would receive a survey to fill in and complain there. Over these last 5 days we also found out they had run out of red wine, apple cider and coke zero. Crazy! On board purchases were hugely expensive. 5 photos cost over $100, WiFi social media only, 208, if you wanted unlimited it was another 100 plus! If you wanted higher speeds it was another 200. We heard from entertainers they paid 5! Service was hit and miss with the dining experience the worst. We had dine at anytime allocated to us, deck 3, Truffles Restaurant. There were long lines to wait in, then you were given a pager and waited a minimum of 30 mins, then allocated a table, waited a further 20 mins to be served. Food was generally nice, but not hot. Often no drinks were offered so they lost money there. Yes all drinks except ordinary tea, cost you! Drinks packages were very expensive, except for bottomless bubbles, which was out of a tap, never a can. Laundries were on most floors but all machines except x1 were out of order. Laundering of clothes through the ship was well priced at around $25 per bag. The buffet dining, generally was OK. Many of the staff were not efficient however, instead ignoring customers and chatting among themselves behind the baine Marie's. Food generally was hot. Similar to washing machines, there were many breakdowns causing very long lines at tea and coffee machines. Toast was not ready, and then there was no butter. If there was butter there was no little jars to put it in! Wait wait wait, making the lines longer. Fine dining at their Nouveau Restaurant was fantastic and I can highly recommend, as was the high tea we attended. Beautiful. Any business in this day and age, who does not want customers feedback, in my mind, says they disrespect and discount legitimate concerns. Surely any business wants to know and respond to concerns. Not so Carnival Legend apparently. That is really sad. The running out of sakes of wine by the glass is a good case in point. If it was that popular they would know that opening a bottle and selling by the glass, would recoup more money for their trouble and satisfy customers. Crazy stuff. I for one will never sail with Carnival again. Sick of the lines, sick of warm dinners, sick of tea obviously made from water from a hot water service rather than heated cold water - tasted terrible. And no quality system in place to handle complaints in this day and age is ludicrous. Lifts were speedy and reliable, tv service was OK, WiFi depended on access to satellite so if cloudy it was super slow, an outbreak of the cold hit the ship and first there were around 400 passengers affected, then 1000, then at least 1500. Many visited the ships doctor. Some contracted pneumonia, collapsed lung etc. It was an epidemic. I do not know what they were advised but it would have been ideal if they had all been advised to stay in their cabins! It spread like wildfire. I might add that one of our wait staff the second night dining in Truffles, had a heavy cold and was sniffing and coughing while serving dinner! Why isn't this sort of thing supervised? In summary no more Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
11 night Vanuatu and New Caledonia cruise. Second time on the Spirit. Went on her when she first came to Aussie about 5 years ago. Said we wouldn't go on Carnival again; but my Brother and his partner ha recently been on and enjoyed ... Read More
11 night Vanuatu and New Caledonia cruise. Second time on the Spirit. Went on her when she first came to Aussie about 5 years ago. Said we wouldn't go on Carnival again; but my Brother and his partner ha recently been on and enjoyed it and we were keen to travel with them. It was a real mixed-bag. Embarkation went very smoothly. Muster is a dogs-breakfast though. Why they need to line everybody up like POW's at roll-call, out on the promenade without shade, packed in like sardines is a mystery. On most Princess cruises we've been on, Muster has been in the theater or one of the lounges. The ship is an interesting mix of decors. We had a Balcony Room. Room was tidy and had a fridge. Beds were ok; but not the luxury you get on Princess. Cruise was outside of school holidays, so there wasn't a lot of kids on-board. The ship didn't feel crowded and there was always somewhere quiet you could go. Service levels fluctuated a bit. Never bad.. but not always great. Sadly, we had a jumper on the 3rd night and the ship was required to return to the area to search. That meant we didn't make it into Port that day. The Captain did an amazing job re-jigging the Itinerary so that we still got to 5 Ports and didn't lose one (and arguably, some would say he gave us an improved itinerary). Mystery Island is always a crowd favourite and didn't disappoint. Port Vila always has many varied options and of course, the cheapest duty-free. We've been to all the Ports before, up to 5 times in some cases; so did our own thing for shore-tours. Entertainment was good. The live band that replaced Music Manila were good musicians (and less corny). There were a couple of good solo entertainers and a good trio of violinists playing their take on some pop and rock classics. There was an MOR sequenced duo (and they had good voices). Saw some good shows including a Freddie Mercury impersonator and entertainment was good. To top it off.. they have the Adults Comedy up to 3 times a night which was great. R18. Some of the comedy was very funny (although def Adult only). Usual trivia most days. The unfortunate let-down is the food. It's bland. MDR service ranged from poor to good (first time we had done anytime dining.. maybe that doesn't help). Felt like they were trying to rush you through.. often serving mains to the table while some of us were still eating our entrees. Constantly having to ask for extra butter.. or even bread rolls. Water empty.. no drink orders taken. Very hit and miss and not of the standard you would see on other lines. The food itself and the menus - very average. Usually only luke-warm. Uninspiring. In the past cruises, we had always looked forward to dinner as one of the highlights of the day. On Carnival.. you eat because you have to. The food is poor and you feel like they're trying to get rid of you. Buffet food was very average. Buffet and all food options close by 9pm except the Pizza which is not a great pizza. No other options for a snack later at night. I guess you get spoiled on Princess with 24 hour International Cafe, buffet open till 11pm, free room service (you have to pay extra on Carnival). Breakfast in the dining room - don't think they got the order right once. The burgers and fries closed super early (and were not great anyhow). The BBQ that they had up on top deck sometimes was good though. Coffee was disappointing. If I want to pay for a decent Espresso coffee; I want a cup and saucer.. not a plastic cup. Disembarking was fine. Pools are salt-water. Not my cup of tea (although admit some prefer them over chlorine). All-in-all, a very mixed bag. Fun to be had.. but the food was such a let down that we will have the fun on a different brand that does things right! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
My sister and I travelled on the Carnival Spirit for an 11 day cruise to the Loyalty Islands particularly to visit Santo as many cruise Lines are no longer visiting this port due to the high Port Fees. We both felt that the embarkation ... Read More
My sister and I travelled on the Carnival Spirit for an 11 day cruise to the Loyalty Islands particularly to visit Santo as many cruise Lines are no longer visiting this port due to the high Port Fees. We both felt that the embarkation process was too long and uncomfortable with long periods of standing in the heat without moving. The Carnival Spirit is an older ship that is showing is age and is looking rusty on the outside and tired on the inside decor. The best part of the ship is definitely the crew, particularly the stewards and waiters who go above and beyond the call of duty to care, provide for and entertain everyone. They are amazing. Unfortunately the ship experienced an unexpected tragedy on board on the third night of the cruise which resulted in an extra day of sailing so a decision was made to exclude Santo and Mare from the itinerary which was unfortunate. The captain then agreed to include Lifou and Isle of Pines instead. Unfortunately we were both underwhelmed by the meals in the Main Dining Room compared to a holiday we had on the same ship just twelve months before. The presentation and quality of the meals wasn’t anywhere near as good as the previous trip and there seemed to be obvious cost cutting measures in place. The shore excursions provided by the ship were few and usually double the cost of local providers but this is typical of all cruise lines. The entertainment provided in the nightly shows were usually very good however the Comedians hired on this cruise were well below par. We weren’t travelling with children and felt that most movies and on deck activities were directed at children so other than Trivia, Bingo and the Casino adults had very little to do. We did however feel that the new Cruise Director Chloe did a wonderful job in engaging passengers. Carnival Cruise Lines need to look into refurbishing, rethink the cost cutting and looking into hiring better quality entertainment before we will travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our second trip and a bit disappointing the ship is old and really needs renovation, buffet food can’t compare to Royal Caribbean, layout is confusing and food average. Restaurant was better option but singing waitresses a bit ... Read More
This was our second trip and a bit disappointing the ship is old and really needs renovation, buffet food can’t compare to Royal Caribbean, layout is confusing and food average. Restaurant was better option but singing waitresses a bit annoying every night. On last night we found a bottle of wine on our table- complementary??? NO . We opened it and shared wine with other guests at the table just to be told we have to pay $55 for it . WHY put a bottle on each table . If it’s there on your table it’s FREE just like the food or put a price on it. We paid but it certainly was not a nice farewell. Would I use same company again. NO . You get wat you pay for. But I must praise the staff they were very nice and professional. Entertainment was good and Hub app was very helpful. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
CARNIVAL SPIRIT embodies CARNIVAL’S value for money and family themes. WATER SLIDES and SPLASH POOLS plus TWIN FAMILY SWIM POOLS appeal to the young (and not so – at 73 I can’t resist the high GREEN THUNDER SLIDE nor the 24hour soft ... Read More
CARNIVAL SPIRIT embodies CARNIVAL’S value for money and family themes. WATER SLIDES and SPLASH POOLS plus TWIN FAMILY SWIM POOLS appeal to the young (and not so – at 73 I can’t resist the high GREEN THUNDER SLIDE nor the 24hour soft serve machines). Dining rooms my 3 previous cruises saw food vary from good to overcooked. Wait-staff usually great – only one guy hopeless. Highlight: the nightly song and dance by wait+kitchen staff – enjoyed by most passengers. + head honcho DESSIE does a brilliant job. Latest trip saw saw gppd waot staff. one meal brilliant – othrs slightly cold overcooked food (how long had they been sitting in the kitchen? – this was the second sitting seeing CARNIVAL could not meet all requests for ANYTIME DINING) + fellow table guests just too colourful fer this introverted couple (I got the impression they thought us boring – not wrong in comparison) + meal finishing time which dictated the LATE SHOW in the theatre – not great for old dudes wanna hit the sack before 1300. Consequently LADY BLACKELDO and I abandoned the dining room for a buffet dinner after the 3rd night. Gotta say there was nothing disappointing about the buffet dinner in comparison. BUFFET food away from dinner echoed dining room. Good ….. and not so. Somehow the spacious buffets seem more crowded than other ships. There are a few bottlenecks – surely some hotshot expert can sort this out. Sunning areas spacious and numerous – maybe best of all ships. But interior lounge/relax areas a bit short. Each theatre spacious – entertainment from good …. to not so. Gyms most spacious and best equipped of all 5 lines I’ve used. I noticed this trip my one complaint re NO CHIN UP BARS had been rectified. Spacious, sunny (but with shade) ADULTS’ ONLY areas policed VERY well. This is important – I’m over sharing the adults’ only pool and spa with kids – suffering the glare of parents – can you dudes read THE SIGN ON ENTRANCE?? …. apparently not. Sensitive types may find CARNIVAL’S Las Vegas style décor a bit flash – although SPIRIT is down a step from LEGEND. But I did notice some LEGEND type wall art in the corridors not seen on previous cruises. DESTINATONS – I kinda like PORT ARTHUR and HOBART. Fer a start, they are a bit different fom our usual PACIFIC ISLANDS destinations. Plus both were great for TIGHTWADS like us who just wanna get off the ship and explore the area independently. I’m over expensive ships’ tours. This latest cruise saw streamlined check-in (cruise cards not issued – waiting at cabin doors [yeah I know what yer thinging]): quickest of all my previous 13 cruises. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
It had been a few months between holidays and, getting restless, Kirsten suggested a last minute cruise she’d seen on sale. I started dreaming of all the meals we’d be eating without needing to prepare, shop, cook or clean up and ... Read More
It had been a few months between holidays and, getting restless, Kirsten suggested a last minute cruise she’d seen on sale. I started dreaming of all the meals we’d be eating without needing to prepare, shop, cook or clean up and without much hesitation, I was in. The cruise was a 12-day South Pacific jaunt aboard the Carnival Spirit, departing and arriving back to our home city of Sydney which we believe to be one of the most gorgeous ports in the world. I must admit we were both cautiously optimistic about our decision. We’d seen the likes of P&O, Carnival and various equivalents leave Sydney packed with Aussies, and having experienced a luxury European river cruise on Scenic and an upmarket Cunard cruise aboard Queen Elizabeth, we weren’t sure if the ‘big fun ship’ was our style. Thinking ahead wistfully about the work and housework we’d enjoy NOT doing for 12 whole days and nights, we were totally on board (so to speak) with the trip to Noumea, Mystery Island, Denarau, Suva and finally Mare aboard a floating hotel. Apart from Fiji, these were new discoveries for us, some new world experiences for these two travel lovers. The Carnival Spirit, playfully referred to as the Fun Ship, holds approx. 2400 passengers and 930 crew. We boarded at around midday on what can only be described as a dream experience of Customs, going straight from being dropped off directly outside the passenger terminal at Circular Quay, to getting our bags taken off our hands before entering the building and breezing through the customs checks and scanners, a quick check in to our room and onto the ship. We could then go straight to our booked Stateroom where our room keys were sitting in a box at our door waiting for us. The best in Sydney, I’d say. We were all feeling festive and ready to escape the city on our adventure at sea. Once we’d slowly exited Sydney Heads, and waved goodbye to the pilot boat from our love-cabana for two, we headed back to the room to get ready for dinner, and discovered a slight glitch in the merriment – my bag was held up because I had a power board and apparently they are a no go onboard. We had to line up in some lower part of the ship along with all the other people with power boards, irons, or alcohol, all of which are not permitted, so we could open the locked bag and hand over the bugger. We were told we could request one of the ship’s own power boards should we need one, which we did. Go figure. You couldn’t take your own, but you could borrow one at no charge. We experienced our first dinner in the main dining room and took ourselves on a tour of the Carnival Spirit. It’s hard to describe her interior as it’s not completely one style. It’s sort of a mish-mash of themed rooms, somewhat like the special hotel rooms you could hire back in the 80’s. Carnival calls it ”The World’s Great Architectural Styles”. You have the Empire Dining Room which is Egyptian with lots of gold and rich colours, and the Pharoah’s Room where the main shows are performed (also Egyptian themed). The Lido (buffet area) feels like sideshow alley and then there’s a jungle-themed walk, a Chinese themed bar (without Chinese food, or any food for that matter), a Japanese restaurant, an 80’s disco, and a couple of leadlight glass and dark wood detailed areas giving an old English pub feel. The main lobby and bar was small but packed a glitz punch of gold everywhere you looked, fresco’s on the ceiling and 3 glass elevators. It was like being in the Sistine Chapel inside Harrods. To top off our self-guided ship tour, we discovered the Casino, shopping alleys and picture viewing galleries all there to entice those precious dollars from your pocket on a day at sea, which of course didn’t feel like you were really spending because you were using a plastic room card to pay. We were fairly happy to find that the cocktails, beer and wine were all very reasonably priced, at pub prices rather than an upmarket bar or restaurant prices. However, if you didn’t want VB, Tooheys New or a couple of other Aussie beers, you were pretty much out of luck. They used to provide all-inclusive alcohol packages on this ship, or so we were told, but these days you can only buy an all-inclusive soft drink package. Not quite the same. I’m guessing that all-inclusive alcohol served to Aussies is a bad financial deal for the cruise line. In the evenings there is always a show to go to after dinner. While we were ready to be wowed delighted, the entertainment proved disappointing. There’s an onboard entertainment team which do their best but it’s a bit too “High School Musical” for this writer and his travel lover. They also have a Comedy Club inside the Versaille room. We dropped in for a PG performance and sadly we’ve never seen anyone bomb so badly, and we left before he finished his set. The Carnival Spirits best entertainment is from the wait staff, they are really fantastic and dance and sing every night while having dinner. It’s not uncommon for a dancing train to weave its way around the dining room, filled with both wait staff and fellow passengers. Even the Captain was most entertaining with a wry sense of humour and Eli, the cruise director, was brilliant. He’s a Kiwi and knows how to find the ironic and joke in situations. His ships talks were worth sitting in on. Sea days are always a good way to test a ships’ boredom factor. Luckily the Carnival Spirit have an adults-only area called “Serenity” at the rear of the ship as I previously mentioned. We’d get there just after breakfast to claim one of the round cane cabanas for 2, and while away many hours keeping shady and reading books while facing out to sea and feeling the fresh sea air. All good while the weather was fine. But after our Mare stop was cancelled due to a cyclone we couldn’t go to our haven and had to endure 4 straight days at sea, mostly indoors. We started to consider the possibility of swimming to shore. Any shore. These days proved difficult and consisted of towel folding demonstrations, bingo, trivia, secrets to a flatter stomach, and blackjack, not to mention more trips to the buffet out of sheer boredom – pretty common cruise activities. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I enjoyed an earlier cruise to New Caledonia on Carnival Spirit. Unfortunately the second time around was not so good; perhaps because we were in an inside cabin this time. The cabin itself was quite a bit smaller than I expected. There ... Read More
I enjoyed an earlier cruise to New Caledonia on Carnival Spirit. Unfortunately the second time around was not so good; perhaps because we were in an inside cabin this time. The cabin itself was quite a bit smaller than I expected. There was no lounge chair, only a single chair, plus a stool in front of the dressing table/ desk. The single beds in our cabin were only 2’ 6” wide which is too narrow. Also, my bed was lumpy, I think because the mattress protector was ill fitting and kept bunching-up in the middle. Okay, so we only paid for a cheap inside cabin, so we don’t expect the world. The air conditioning was very effective at cooling the cabin, but it was at times a little too cool and very sensitive to movements of the controller. Nevertheless, I would rather be cool than too hot. The bathroom smelt musty/ mouldy as soon as we first entered it. I think because the shower curtains may not be washed frequently enough and the whole bathroom smelt like it could do with a good wipe over with chlorine bleach. The toilet smelt of old urine from the minute we entered the cabin. Also the toilet seat did not appear to me to be very clean with old ingrained stains. I noticed the same smells in the bathroom in the last cruise I did on Carnival Spirit. During that cruise I had to ask the steward if she could find some bleach to clean it with. The food in the buffet is generally good considering the price of the cruise, but they generally served up the same offerings every day. They could easily provide more variety without spending more money. For example, the home fried potatoes have a bad tasting spice on them. They could provide some variety by not using the spices on some days. Also, the baked beans were always the variet with onions. How about buying some cans of beans without the onions. No extra cost. At the breakfast buffet (Good Eats) the food is put out at around 6:30am but guests aren’t allowed to touch it until 7:00, by which time much of it is not so enjoyable, especially the eggs benedict. At the Guy Fieri burger stand, I think they need to change the frying oil more frequently as the potato chips (fries) I had were soft and dark. Instead of the art auctions in the Versailles Lounge, where hardly anybody buys anything, they should show movies during the day more frequently. These would be very well attended judging by the attendance at the one or two movies that they did show. The enrichment activities were generally attempts to sell health-related treatments to passengers. These all seemed to be quite expensive. Most people, including myself, only seemed to attend the art auctions for the free “champagne”, which is just sparkling white wine, and the entertainment. Even the free sparkling white wine was mostly orange juice. OK, we don’t expect real champagne, but at least give the option of either straight sparkling wine or the wine/orange juice mixture. The gym was advertised as opening at 6:00am, but on three occasions this cruise I had to ask a passing staffer to open it up. This was done with barely a grunt. I was also concerned about the grinding and repainting work being done on the Lido deck during the sea days, only metres away from passengers including kids. From what I could see there was little attempt, and probably no easy way, to suppress the dust while they were doing the work. Not a good look. There was quite an extensive list of shore excursions available, but information on these should be provided to passengers online in advance of the cruise so we can plan a little. As it was, many of the good excursions were fully booked when we tried to book them on the second sea day. Royal Caribbean does a much better job at providingn this information to passengers as soon as they have booked. Overall, the experience was about average, but okay for the money we paid. I would probably pay a little (or a lot?) more and cruise with a different cruise line next time. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
I selected the cruise because a friend was on board with her children and mother-in-law. The service in the restaurant was slow especially at the end of the meal. I was on anytime dining and on the two nights I ate in the main ... Read More
I selected the cruise because a friend was on board with her children and mother-in-law. The service in the restaurant was slow especially at the end of the meal. I was on anytime dining and on the two nights I ate in the main restaurant it took 15 minutes for them to take my dessert plate so I could leave and free up my otherwise empty table, mean while there is a huge queue outside of people waiting for tables. I then started having dinner in the Bonsai Sushi Restuarant where there was no queue and I could be out in about 45 minutes. The quality of the food in the bistro seemed to be sub par whereas some ships have the same food in the Bistro just without the service staff. I went to many of the comic shows in the basement under the showroom. Overall a mixed bag with some comic's being funny and others just being abusive to people in the audience for laughs. The stage shows were good even though they only consisted of 8 performers. Embarkation was quick but as a suite passenger you get priority boarding. Then again apart from having a larger room the only other benefit was a complimentary bottle of water (value $4.50) and a packet of biscuits. Priority boarding for the tenders consisted of joining the end of the queue of people. One port this was a queue of anybody who wanted to get off the other day it was the people who had been send on wards from the showroom in numbered groups. The mini golf course is next to useless if the ship is moving. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
I don’t want this to be read as a negative review, but there were things Carnival Australia could improve on. We cruised on Carnival Legend ex Sydney 17th Dec 2018 for 10 nights to Pacific Islands. This was our 11th cruise holiday ... Read More
I don’t want this to be read as a negative review, but there were things Carnival Australia could improve on. We cruised on Carnival Legend ex Sydney 17th Dec 2018 for 10 nights to Pacific Islands. This was our 11th cruise holiday (Cunard, 2xRoyal Caribbean, 2x Princess, MSC, 2x P&O Aust, P&O UK and Carnival Caribbean). So we have other cruises to compare this with. We were warned Carnival Australia was considered more budget conscious, and we were happy with that, but didn’t expect their penny pinching to be so blatantly obvious. It started within minutes of us boarding the ship and making our way to our stateroom. Our room attendant welcomed us and showed us around, before he asked if we’d like our room serviced in the morning, OR the afternoon. All previous cruises, our room has been serviced twice a day. Not on this ship. For breakfast I like a muesli. In the Unicorn buffet, there were Corn Flakes, Rice Bubbles, Cocoa Pops, All Bran. No muesli. So on the 1st morning, I asked, just in case I had overlooked it. I was told yes, they had it over at the “Continental” counter. Oh yes they had it, but it was hidden under the counter, out of sight. Some days I was told they’d run out, then it reappeared the next day. So I spoke to a crew member dressed all in white (unsure of his position, but he was involved in the restaurant or the food). I then got it every morning after that. But it was always hidden, under the counter. The only reason I can think why it was hidden is muesli is a lot more expensive than the other cereals available. It was summertime. Think of all those lovely summer fruits. Strawberries, apricots, nectarines, peaches, plums, pineapple. Yum. But not on this ship. At the breakfast buffet you had the choice of various types of watermelon, prunes and I recall canned peaches. I did see whole apples, oranges and pears. Guess what. The other summer fruits cost more. I like kiwifruit with my muesli. Not on this ship. Prior to the evening dinner, we would always go to a bar for a drink. Most other ships, we’ve been given complimentary nibbles with our drinks. It doesn’t have to be much – just a saucer full – but not on this ship. Lunchtime, I like to have a salad. Yes, they had lettuce and tomato, grated carrot, corn etc, but nothing special. I cannot exactly remember now, but I was struggling to find other foods to put on my plate. Before bedtime, I like a cuppa tea and a bikkie. I’d go to the Unicorn buffet and get a cuppa tea but there was nothing else to nibble on except a freshly made pizza!!! During the day they had nice little cookies available to have with a cuppa, but not later in the evening. Whynot? They had a kiosk machine guests could check their onboard account. Opening a new bank account would be easier. I thought the machine was going to ask for a blood sample. Ridiculous. We gave up. A suggestion box in Guest Services area may have been helpful. Some guests complained some of the dishes served at Truffles Restaurant were never hot. By the time they were delivered to the table, they were warm +. I personally didn’t have a problem with this, but some did. ON THE POSITIVE SIDE. We did have an issue with some noise in our room during the early hours of the morning. Anytime from 2am – 4.30am. We spoke to neighbouring rooms and they heard it as well. We could never pinpoint its origin exactly, but we guess was it was coming from the Unicorn buffet (we were the floor below it) and the noise was travelling through the air conditioning system. When we contacted room services, Carnival Legend never questioned our reports and compensated us very generously. We assume it’s an ongoing issue for guests in these rooms. Everything was clean and tidy on the ship, all the staff were excellent and I was happy with the food in Truffles Restaurant. Would I go Carnival Legend again? YES I would (but if there was another cruise line doing a similar cruise, I would choose the other cruise line). I think Carnival could improve some of the things I’ve mentioned, without costing them too much extra. An ‘enjoyable cruise’, could become a great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Have never sailed with Carnival before so decided to take a break. The ship had been refitted this year. The decor of a Greek theme was very dark and oppressive. The ships layout was easy to navigate. It was surprising to see ... Read More
Have never sailed with Carnival before so decided to take a break. The ship had been refitted this year. The decor of a Greek theme was very dark and oppressive. The ships layout was easy to navigate. It was surprising to see sanitization ok n stations in obscure locations . They were not manned. The wash stations were not manned and looked like a drink dispenser. What was a surprise was there was no attempt to educate passengers on hygiene. Now on a double dose of antibiotics from throat infection . Thanks Carnival. The ship has a constant vibration that keeps you awake. Fatigue will set on and something will fail. Maintenance of small items took forever Fridge was defective for 3 days and took 3 calls to get attention. Cruise Director was good. Buffett was ghastly. Food was stewed and sat there. Burgers and tacos were good. Pizzas passable. The buffet menu suited the overweight and obese. Full of sugar and carbs. Dinner in the dining room was superb . Service was very good. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
8 days South Pacific cruise to Isle of Pines, Mare and Nouméa, Enrichment Activities - did not attend any, these don’t interest us. Embarkation/disembarkation - good, we did not encounter any issues. Public Rooms - well ... Read More
8 days South Pacific cruise to Isle of Pines, Mare and Nouméa, Enrichment Activities - did not attend any, these don’t interest us. Embarkation/disembarkation - good, we did not encounter any issues. Public Rooms - well maintained, and spaced out. Cabin - we had interior Stateroom 7260, no major issues, and close to the Empire Restaurant on level 2. In fact it doesn’t matter where you were located, there’s lifts close by, everywhere, as the ship is not huge. Shore Excursions - we did not book any. We did our own thing. Isles of Pines - we tender to the island for a swim, and soak in the village experience. We did not purchase anything or eat anything on the island. Bring sufficient dollars and coins in Aussie money because change is given in French, and you don’t want that. Mare - we tender to the island, but we did not stay long, as there was not much to see or do, however for $$$ you can go on a tour if you wish to. Nouméa- we disembarked. We did our own thing, we walked around the CBD, having been to Noumea many years ago, nothing has changed too much. Cost of living is very high. For a fee, the ship provides a shuttle, and another free shuttle to take you across to the CBD, as its impossible to walk to get to the CBD - too many cars and dangerous. Onboard Experience - karaoke every night for 2 hours to give kids and adults a chance to shine and make some noise, song book organised, however very limited song choices, and after a few nights you just don’t bother to partake, but listen to the others. Audience cannot assist you to sing because there’s no additional screens, and that is a real downfall. All other ships have screen, including your local pub. Dancing classes - good, but very short lesson, to pass time, and cheap, and given in the Spirit Lobby - a very small area which is not ideal. Water slides - did not partake, too cold for us. Restaurants (paying) - too expensive, did not partake. Entertainment - not the best, just average rock bands and singers. However, Electric Violin with Emerald Trio was excellent - something different. Shopping - good selection, but expensive. The alcohol shop on the 2nd last day duty free at 4pm (10% discount) was very disorganised, the queue to the checkout was long and crowded. Thank goodness I paid for my alcohol in the jewellery shop. Activities on board are OK, can be repetitious. Most activities in mind are cheaply thought of. Photos - very expensive, and on level 3 is devoted to photos only. To become a professional photographer takes years in training, where these are all amateurs. An elderly couple picked up their photos, costed heaps, and realised their wrinkles were all photoshopped. Alcohol - very expensive. If you are a beer drinker, consider taking a package when you get onboard and ask at the bar. One drink can set you back $9.00, and this can add up very quick. Wine is the same, about $35 a bottle. But Aussies are big drinkers, this is Carnival’s secret weapon. Value for Money - we booked the special price and if you don’t drink, then on this special price was fine. However, some paid over $1,000 for an interior Stateroom, and got ripped off by their travel agent or a close friend, only to find out it was cheaper online from the cruise company. Do your research. Dining - fine dining is very average, and dish presentation is terrible, timing and fast service is what’s all about. We have been cruising for many years, most cruise don’t tell you, you can order as many dishes as you like, e.g 2-3 entrees, 3 mains etc, and if you don’t like, after that head to the buffet for more choices. Dressing up for theme night is not required, your choice. Elegant dress night is applicable, however not enforced. Just look decent and have some respect. The buffet food on level 9, some dishes are good, some are terrible - tasteless, too sweet or too dry as in chicken dishes. Overall, you’ll find something to eat. Some of soups were tasty. Staff in fine dining and buffet were great and hard working. Fitness and recreation - free and a good selection of gym equipment. There is a spa in this area, and also free sauna and steam rooms, and showers. Drinking water and towels provided. All inside and uncovered. For a fee, there are beauty treatments and hair salon. Serenity pool area - free over 18s. A place to relax, and drink. Overall - the decor on this ship is not pleasing to the eye, and very much what you read in the reviews, yuk, but you get use to it, after a few days. Rust is just about everywhere. Guest relations, some ladies can’t multi task, some are plain rude, and have no idea about how the Aussie’s think. All hospitality staff on the ship are pleasant. Some hosts/directors have excellent commend of English, others are just terrible. Security was good, however, do remember there’s always young to med single man, and including dirty old man on a hunt for a catch, so be mindful, and always be on guard, and not be chatty to anyone just because he looks friendly. No we would not be returning on to this ship, many of the activities were boring, many things were repeated over and over, and some entertainment just average. On this cruise it was school holidays, it was loud, but acceptable to us. Tips - bring ear buds, medication, wet suit, hand and face cream, nail clippers, sun screen, hat, duct tape, camera or go pro, iPad has better reception than iPhone, however very slow. Do not bother with premium package internet, I purchased the med range at $129, but could not send or receive emails, that was fine with me, an Aussie Power adapter, bring two, the prong is reversed being the ship v is the the way around, be sure you have clearance, that is space around the adapters, bring iPhone chargers, do not bring power packs. The power outlet in our room was situated on the desk, and you could not move the desk to get clearance, joggers, flats, and one pair of elegant shoes, not your best heels, it’s not a competition, Aussie dollars and coins if you want to buy things on the island, shorts, swimmers and your holiday spirit if this is your first cruise. Control all expenses and just enjoy this cruise and give feedback. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Enjoyed my 11 night cruise to the South Pacific, but the Carnival Spirit didn't quite live up to expectations. The food was the biggest disappointment - average would be the best description, though some passengers raved about the ... Read More
Enjoyed my 11 night cruise to the South Pacific, but the Carnival Spirit didn't quite live up to expectations. The food was the biggest disappointment - average would be the best description, though some passengers raved about the food, particularly in the main dining room (made us wonder what they were used to) - we swear that the cheesecake was a Sarah Lee frozen one!!! There was no flair or finesse in the presentation and the menu left a lot to be desired - the potato served up was so old it had shoots on it!!! But none of the promised sour cream, chives or bacon bits..... eating in the Lido Buffet was ok, as long as you got there early to beat the masses. Another disappointment was that the food stations were not open as advertised - meaning that it was a bit hit and miss as to what food was available (we saw a crew member almost cry when she was unable to get a meal later in the night and had to settle for pizza, which is 24 hrs) The ice cream is a soft serve machine, one of which broke down and was removed. On the up side, we all lost weight by the time we got off the ship!! Our cabin was good and the room stewart attentive - although we had to have our fridge replaced and then the new one still didnt work (turned out to be a power problem that was rectified eventually). We enjoyed the entertainment most nights, had fun at the ports of call and joined in trivia etc. All in all, it was a good cruise though I would not rave over the ship....we all felt it just didnt live up to our expectations and will try another cruise line next time Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Wanted to try a different cruise line after being with Princess Cruises. Thought Fun ship that's different. Well not what I call fun. Getting pushed out of way by kids and parents. Kids running up and down hallways and up and down ... Read More
Wanted to try a different cruise line after being with Princess Cruises. Thought Fun ship that's different. Well not what I call fun. Getting pushed out of way by kids and parents. Kids running up and down hallways and up and down stairs pushing elevator buttons. Embarkation was average to say the least. Cabin was clean ad tidy but smaller then I was expecting We had anytime dinning that was ok and food was OK but not much variety Entertainment as OK there was a couple of good shows but was a big disturbance in one of the comedy shows and security was very slow sorting that out The Bar service was OK but seriously when is it OK to have kids sitting at bars in my opinion that is terrible practice. In the casino there were kids running around pushing buttons not good practice allowing that Parents were more concerned with having there own fun to worry what there kids were doing The shore excursions were average but OK Was suppose to get $200 credit each not a cent received. and the internet was the worst I have had on any cruise. $240 and could not access any thing I would not sail on the Sprit again at this stage Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I must say from the outset that we had sail on the Spirit on about 5 or 6 other occasions. It was disappointing to see the cost cutting that has taken place and onboard price rises for beer,wine and other things. The shows over the ten ... Read More
I must say from the outset that we had sail on the Spirit on about 5 or 6 other occasions. It was disappointing to see the cost cutting that has taken place and onboard price rises for beer,wine and other things. The shows over the ten nights were ok but it looks like guest artists have now gone by the wayside. The MDR menu seems to have also down sized, the meal services was also slow and towards the end of the cruise the waiters were mixing up the orders. The buffet was the same as most in that you struggled to find a table. Afternoon tea in the buffet as also gone but of course you can pay to go to the Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea. The sea day brunch was a joke we had 4 waters looking after about 20 tables and they were actually walking very fast between tables to do the service in fact they were sweating that is how hard they had to work. Our Meet & Mingle was a very big let down (compared to what happens in the USA) our cruise director Eli did not introduce himself in fact I asked him to say something but his answer was that they do not say anything at these events !! In fact he and his assistant used the meeting for their morning tea. We did not get our year specific year pins. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
We did enjoy our cruise but found the ship to be rather tired, especially in the hallways. The pods on decks 9 and 10 were nice to lay in with a book if you could get one, but I always would put a towel down 1st as the cushions and the ... Read More
We did enjoy our cruise but found the ship to be rather tired, especially in the hallways. The pods on decks 9 and 10 were nice to lay in with a book if you could get one, but I always would put a towel down 1st as the cushions and the mat you lay on were stained and a bit grubby! It was nice to have the Serenity adults only area to get away from the kids that were often left to run wild over the ship (no fault of the Carnival! ) Another thing I feel I have to mention is a big annoyance to me is the ever increasing amount of cruisers who find it acceptable to "reserve seats" for their family or friends! This is againts many cruise liners policies but always never enforced! In Europe it is quite common in a resort to find 50 + chairs with towels draped over them and not a soul in sight as theyre all out shopping etc.... I find it the height of rudness and very un Australian! I found the food on the ship very hit and miss, in the Empire dining room sometimes there were fantastic meals being served up and the next night quite the opposite, much the same for me with the buffet upstairs too, there was an amazing layered shoe string pastery with blue berrys and cream for lunch one day and then 2 consecutive days following that there were just cup cakes on offer! The shows at night were ok ( no orchestra ) and the dancers were full of energy. We also found that many of the on board activities during the day were had $ symbols! When we checked into our cabin the shower had not been cleaned and there was a razor and used soap in there! staff were mostly friendly bit not trained to a standard of some other ships I have been onn for example I found myself walking around or stepping aside of some of them instead of the other way around. In all honesty I can only rate my experience as very average compared with others I have sailed on. It was our 1st time on Carnival and I won't be returning. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This is my second cruise on this ship in the past 12 months and have another planned. The Food was awesome as usual but we had some issues with maintenance, surprisingly as it had come out of dry dock month earlier A couple of the public ... Read More
This is my second cruise on this ship in the past 12 months and have another planned. The Food was awesome as usual but we had some issues with maintenance, surprisingly as it had come out of dry dock month earlier A couple of the public toilets broke, flooded and where out of order, The complete ship went dark and we had no power at one point. The entertainment was great, the shows conducted are of a very high standard, comedy shows were also very good. The ship was relatively clean and service was great from dinning staff and room Stewart. Overall experience was great with some issues during the cruise. The weather was a bit cold and windy which was a bit of a shame. Not much swimming. I was disappointed about the casino area allowing very obviously intoxicated people in the area, gambling and continuing drinking. They lost their cash obviously. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This cruise was a short break to visit Tasmania with another couple. On arrival we went to our room to drop off our hand luggage. Trouble and time wasting with the safe is detailed in the cabin review. Cleanliness of the room was a huge ... Read More
This cruise was a short break to visit Tasmania with another couple. On arrival we went to our room to drop off our hand luggage. Trouble and time wasting with the safe is detailed in the cabin review. Cleanliness of the room was a huge disappointment and is also detailed in the cabin section of this review. This lack of cleanliness was a bit of a theme throughout the cruise. Table tops in the buffet often dirty as were the bathrooms in the public areas. Rarely did we see a buffet steward doing anything other than collecting dirty crockery- no wiping of table tops and no attention to detail. There seemed to be a huge lack of staff in public areas to enable standards to be kept up. My husbands suitcase still had not shown up 4 hrs after embarkation. After a call to the front desk with no satisfaction we found a letter on our bed telling us we had contraband in the suitcase and we needed to go to the front desk. We did this and were then sent to security on another level only to find out from a smart alec security officer that we had a power board in the suitcase. We have used this exact power board on many cruises with no problems. More time wasted. Getting a drink was a matter of lining up at the bar. Rarely was there any table service which seems odd to us as alcohol and drinks are a huge money spinner for any cruise line. Certainly at the huge prices being charged on this ship if they had more staff performing table service they would have made a lot more money. The food in the buffet was less than ordinary. Long lines, difficulty finding a table, tepid food and poor selections made it a disappointing option. This was the first cruise where staff were not serving the food in the buffet especially for the first couple of days to prevent the spread of Noro Virus. Many passengers touching serving utensils is a recipe for disaster. Some of the food was so far back that people were putting their heads into the warming area to reach the utensils. Very poorly organised. It works much more efficiently and hygienically when staff do the honours. Less wastage also when staff serve hungry passengers. By contrast the food and service in the dining room was lovely. The line up for the anytime dining was very frustrating. At breakfast one morning there were over 100 passengers waiting in line to enter the dining room. After returning 15 minutes later the line had not shrunk. At dinner we were often supplied with a beeper (after a long wait in line) only to find on entry to the restaurant that half the tables were empty. The only possible explaination for this must have been a lack of staff to serve these tables. The child free Serenity area was a great place to avoid the many children onboard. Although we had no children there appeared to be lots of places to entertain the little ones as well. Entertainment on this ship was pretty good. We frequented the Red Frog bar which had excellent service from bar staff and great music from the band from Manila. Whilst we did not join in with the bingo/trivia/ games on offer there certainly did seem to be lots happening. We did not use the gym but it certainly had prime position at the front of the ship with the best views available. Most ships have a large bar in this position and not sure why Carnival chose to put the gym here- only saw 1 person using it. We did not try the specialty steak restaurant which we usually do on our cruises. The reason for this was the price-$45 a head. Never paid more than $25US on our many other cruises. Another elevated price for the Aussie travellers. We spoke to a passenger who was a regular with Carnival and she said all prices had dramatically increased over the last few months. She too was disappointed. I believe many of our disappointments in this cruise directly reflect staffing levels on Carnival Spirit. After almost 20 cruises around the world we have never experienced this lack of staff and service on all levels. We have come to realise Australians pay highly for cruises and in return are provided with a second rate service. American cruisers would not put up with either the lack of attention or the high prices that we have come to expect. Our first cruise on P&O 20 years ago with our children was amazing but expensive given there was no competition. Now there are so many cruise ships based in Australia and much more competition but we have a reduced level of service with no reduction in price. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
This was our 10th cruise. 3rd with Carnival. Also the last with Carnival. Food was average and at times terrible. Cold meals twice. Had to return two meals. One was cold and the other was dry and cold (due to waiting too long to be served ... Read More
This was our 10th cruise. 3rd with Carnival. Also the last with Carnival. Food was average and at times terrible. Cold meals twice. Had to return two meals. One was cold and the other was dry and cold (due to waiting too long to be served up). Manager arrived and said " I want you to try your meal while I am here). He was rude and intimidating. No apologies, he offered me a tour of the kitchen as compensation. I just wanted a nice hot meal. For this one reason I would not sail with them again. The ships décor is woeful. Getting on/off the ship in port was good. Service was average. Cabin was average. (needs updating) TV is as big as my laptop. Entertainment was below the standard of other cruise lines. The miming on one show was embarrassing. Departing the ship was quick and easy. Will not sail Carnival again. Third and last time. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
I chose this cruise as it was a different ship and there was a great deal on at that time. The embarkation was swift as we turned up for our allotted time and didnt have to stand around. Carry on luggage stays with you until your room is ... Read More
I chose this cruise as it was a different ship and there was a great deal on at that time. The embarkation was swift as we turned up for our allotted time and didnt have to stand around. Carry on luggage stays with you until your room is ready, which was fine by us as rooms are not ready til 1.30. There was always a lot of water around the pool decks, yes i know, there are pools there. People were slipping over everyday on the cruise due to wet floors. (yes i know what shoes to wear) The Red Frog Pub and Fountain Cafe were great spots to get away from the heat and children having fun. Note: children are allowed in the bars until 10.30pm so dont plan on a quiet drink before bed. I personally didnt enjoy the Carnival entertainers. The girls were strangling all the songs which were cringe worthy. The 'Miss Houdini' show was amazing. We didnt visit the comedy shows due to the fact that they were on later than we anticipated after dinner. Food from the main dining room was good. The room itself was a massive rumble of noise and sitting under the dome shape roof, it was just echoing. we had dinner there for one night only. The buffet area had plenty on offer and a wide range of food. Free ice cream and pizza, (which they use as a selling point) was crap, rarely saw kids with the ice cream after the first day. Guys burger joint was pretty much Hungry Jacks and i guess you need to like their burgers. Nouvea had great steak but i feel for an intimate restaurant they need to stop other cruisers just walking through in wet costumes etc. If you book, ask for table near a window behind the main wall so you miss the intruders.Serenity lounge was nice but i couldnt sit there all day. On nice days you have to be quick to get a pod or lounge, even table and chair was hard to get at times. Smoking area was amazingly comfy (im a non smoker)with nice lounges and tables and rather large area which was nice to see and remember you have the choice to walk on the other side of the ship. (People need to give them a break). Santa coming to ship was good with the snow coming into the Atrium, kids loved it. The decor of the ship isnt as dark as what some photos appear. Disembarkation was going really well until the microphone dropped out 2 numbers before ours was called, we sat in the cafe for 30 minutes longer than needed and if you have someone waiting to collect you, its a long time with limited parking available at Sydney OPT. Would i go again. I would say no, even though i have a Nouvea voucher for 2 to use and $300 OBC..wont be booking in a hurry Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We were first introduced to cruising aboard the P&O Pacific Jewel for a 3 night cruise out of Auckland, and both my wife, 6 year old daughter and myself loved every minute of that cruise, so 1 month later November 2017 went on the ... Read More
We were first introduced to cruising aboard the P&O Pacific Jewel for a 3 night cruise out of Auckland, and both my wife, 6 year old daughter and myself loved every minute of that cruise, so 1 month later November 2017 went on the Carnival Legend for an 8 night cruise to New Caledonia. Well getting on the ship in Sydney was far superior to that of Auckland there was staff everywhere to help and getting on the ship was super easy! Unfortunately the same could not be said for the safety drill P&O was far less painful! We had to stand on the outside deck in direct sunlight for over 30 mins my 6 year old wanted to sit and so I sat with her only to be told to stand, P&O was done in a nice cool Casino room. Photo's anyone? they kept snapping them all the time! P&O just when we boarded, Carnival at dinner snap waking around ship snap, and the cost? between $18 and $30 each no package deal no digital copy just the 20th Century tech of paper! Like others have said very expensive alcohol drink prices, lucky for me I do not drink but a wine for my wife $11.50 P&O was just $8 Luckily the water was free and if from the restaurant free from chlorine which has a lot in it on the P&O ship. However not all is bad compared to the P&O Stewards and staff well there is no comparison, Carnival Legend Stewards were fantastic as was all the crew, after first day Our Stewards knew our names, and he and his helper had over 30 cabins to take care of! Every day they would leave a Towel animal either on our bed or if a bird or monkey hanging from roof, I feel sorry for these people they are worked hard every day for the whole cruise, please tip them even though its not required out of Australia/NZ. Food was great in the buffet however we never really liked the included fine dining, again the staff were great but the food was average to poor. Our room was small and cosy it was an inside cabin that I loved as it was really dark so much easier for me to sleep, we had a mini suite on the Jewel yet this room felt nicer. New Caledonia? Nothing new about this place especially Noumea what a dump! if you enjoy seeing 2 classes of people, the french and the native Noumea people, as well as 90% of buildings, fencing and walls covered in graffiti as well as tired worn down buildings then you will love this place, if not avoid! We did take the hop on hope off bus but our 2 hours there was more than enough! Went to Mc Donalds to get the free wifi but you had to buy a family box or $35 to get the free wifi lol. Our next port was canceled due to bad weather so went to Isle of pines which was far superior, But Australia beaches are still better as other than the beach there is not much else to do. There was a great onboard Carnival app that showed lots of info, however it was not perfect as if you want to chat to other family members in the same room anyone that wanted to chat had to pay $9 each and it only worked if the app was open at same time, no notifications if app closed. Oh and the internet packages it was super expensive $180 for 8 day cruise at dial up speed or up to $50 per day for maybe if lucky 2g speeds we never bought a package so can only guess at the speeds, but on the cruise app you could go to Carnival home page and that was dial up speeds One last thing I am from NZ and I have to say I was shocked in a good way at how friendly Australians are and how they really treated the crew almost everyone thanked the crew while being served and I mean "thank you very much, have a great day" and they were quick to say sorry if bumped into each other even if sometimes was my fault! Overall I did enjoy the cruise however we will likely do a cruise around Australian/NZ ports next time as 8 days on a small ship like the Legend is a little to long.... Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
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