3 Carnival Vista Cruise Reviews for Group and Theme Cruises to Caribbean - Eastern

we chose this cruise for the stops. out of the 16 of us that went 8 of us would not go on that boat again. the handle to the door on the balcony was very hard to operate. the service at most of the outdoor and casino bar was slow, it ... Read More
we chose this cruise for the stops. out of the 16 of us that went 8 of us would not go on that boat again. the handle to the door on the balcony was very hard to operate. the service at most of the outdoor and casino bar was slow, it regularly took 20 minutes to get a drink when sitting at a machine or table. seemed like on sea days one of the buffets was always closed and the lines were long. red frog pub, and steakhouse were excellent. guys burger,the pizza place and asian were good. this is the first time i have not gone to the dinning room(not for any reason i just didn't go) room service was excellent as always. cruise director matt was the best I've encountered. i loved the fact that they now have a military and veteran appreciation day, they raffle off a cruise, they could do so much more like higher discounts for service people, and first responders. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
First lets start with the port of Miami staggered embarcation. I was scheduled between 11:30-12:00. I showed up at the port at 11:45, stood in line for 15 minutes outside and was inside the terminal for another 10 minutes before I made ... Read More
First lets start with the port of Miami staggered embarcation. I was scheduled between 11:30-12:00. I showed up at the port at 11:45, stood in line for 15 minutes outside and was inside the terminal for another 10 minutes before I made it to the check in desks. Check in was quick and efficient and I was in the waiting room within minutes after that and boarded the ship by 12:30. The ship is brand new and it shows. Everything onboard looks new. The layout of the ship is very different from older Conquest class ships, it's more compartmentalized and some people seem to have a problem with that but I loved it. My cabin was fine, more on that later. Dining and food... Oh carnival carnival carnival... THIS is where you have gone wrong. Since their cost cutting measures a few years ago there were big cutbacks on selection and quality of food and that has not changed. Still no tablecloths in the dining room, so the unhygienic situation has not changed there. Quite a shame as service in both the dining room and buffet was excellent. Shows in theatre and musicians throughout the ship were quite good. Sadly the layout of the theatre is an absolute mess. They wanted to make it a multi-use room and in the process made it useless. The floor is flat and unless you are in the front rows, all you see is the back of the heads of the folks in front of you. During the "Behind The Fun" tour, theatre staff acknowledged that this seating setup is a huge source of dissatisfaction for both the staff and cruisers. Service throughout the ship was excellent. I never had to wait for a bartender more than a minute. I'd say overall this was the best service I've had on any Carnival ships. Ports were all destinations I've already visited so in most cases I had my own plans. Debarkation and boarding back on the ship was a breeze with no wait at all in all ports. Though the food is almost a deal breaker for me, I would cruise this ship again as I enjoyed everything else about this ship. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
My second time this year on the Vista, we chose this itinerary as our first Christmas cruise and opportunity to enjoy the Havana area. Our ports included St. Maarten, San Juan, and Grand Turk. I was so amazed that so many of the crew ... Read More
My second time this year on the Vista, we chose this itinerary as our first Christmas cruise and opportunity to enjoy the Havana area. Our ports included St. Maarten, San Juan, and Grand Turk. I was so amazed that so many of the crew remembered us from our cruise this summer in the Mediterranean. Service overall was fantastic, from our amazing cabin steward Paul in the Havana area aft balcony on deck 6, Franklin our bartender in the Havana area, Gabriel our bartender at the Alchemy bar, the amazing hostess in the Fahrenheit Steakhouse where we ate twice (again), to Matt and Cookie cruise director and entertainment directors extraordinaires! I know that common areas on the ship can be crowded at times. I do not like crowds or lines, so I planned my experience accordingly. With Your Time Dining, when I did choose to eat in the MDR, I'd eat early between 5:30 and 6:00 to check in. We never waited in line more than 5 minutes. For the must-try Pig and Anchor Sea Day barbecue, I went right when it opened or later in the afternoon to avoid the crowds. It's superb, by the way. The brisket, chicken, sausage, mac and cheese, baked beans, and cornbread are best in class. For JiJi's Asian Mongolian wok lunch, I chose embarkation day to avoid any crowds at all. Of course, with the exclusive access to the Havana Area in the day time, our hot tubs, pools, loungers and large day beds were never crowded. This was heaven! It changes the whole cruise. It is completely worth it. If you know that service in the MDR can take 2-3 hours for dinner and you want to see a show, you should keep that in mind when ordering. Food in the MDR is just okay, especially if you stick to standard entrees. I don't do this. I order more unusual things like mussels, oysters Rockefeller, cheese plates, fish entrees, and port inspired entrée selections. These tended to be absolutely delicious. Also, if nothing sounded interesting to me, I'd make a meal of multiple appetizers and eat tapas style. I wish ordering a drink in the MDR meant that you could order from your wait captain. Once we ordered and never got our drinks. Also, it would be better if they had roving waiters on the decks to take drink orders when you're sunbathing. This kind of service is spotty on the ship. I'd eat every night in the steakhouse if they offered more entrees. It's excellent service, quiet, romantic, and superior quality dining. The hostess and wait staff went far beyond expectations to delight us with accommodating service. We had the Cheers package and loved a particular champagne only available there, so we stopped into the restaurant before dinner to get a glass and the hostess would just greet us and get our glasses. I felt like a VIP. Late night dining is great at Pizzeria del Capitano with hand tossed pizzas. This was the longest time we ever waited to eat, but we didn't mind because we conversed with others as we waited after midnight and got a beer at the bar right there. We'd have room service for breakfast and tried it once for dinner. My insider tip for this is to order an extra BLT for dinner and put it in your cabin fridge for breakfast the next day. Also tip your room service waiter! I loved the Studio VIP show and the America Rocks show this time. There was a small line the night we walked up to the Studio VIP show a few minutes early, and the cast pulled us out of line and asked us if we wanted to be in the show. We said yes, and got front row seats! If you're up for no-holds-barred adults entertainment, do not miss the NSFW late night adult scavenger hunt in the Liquid Lounge. I have never had so much fun on a cruise. We played a lot of trivia and won our coveted ship on a stick from the Vista this time as well. Our aft facing balcony was perfect with a view of the portside hot tub and the wake of the engines. The room is standard like all Carnival balconies with deeper balcony, Havana toiletries (including a body wash, body wash/shampoo dual purpose wash, and but no separate conditioner, so be aware of that), and special robes and towels. After 7PM, they open the Havana area to the entire ship. Because this was holiday season there were a lot of teens on vacation. On two nights, we had loud teens right outside our room in the hot tub not 10 feet from us. This was a bit of a nuisance, so I'd avoid this same type room when school was out if I sailed on the Vista again. Our itinerary was completely reversed due to storms in the Caribbean, but we had perfect weather, so I wasn't phased. St. Maarten is great for beaches, shopping in Philipsburg, and dining in Marigot. Our snorkeling tour through Carnival was cancelled the day before with no explanation, so we just booked a bus tour of the island with an opportunity to have lunch in Marigot. Good call! The island creole meal at Rosemary's on the beach was superb! Old Town in San Juan is absolutely charming for a food tour and a walking tour right off the ship, and you can walk to the beautiful, photogenic seaside port El Morro right from the ship. Grand Turk has pristine beaches, but Governor's beach right off the ship near Margaritaville is too crowded for me. I took a cab to Cockburn town for the best conch ever and then went on to Pillory beach a bit farther down and not as crowded. Loved it! This was the first cruise where we met a number of other gay and lesbian couples at the Alchemy Bar on the first night LGBT gathering with whom we hit it off, spent time off and on at shows, at trivia, and even meeting for dinner. We were so pleased! Frankly, even the rest of the people in the Havana area and the crew were incredibly friendly. We had so much fun. We loved taking spin classes in the mornings (for a $23/class per person fee) in the gym. The classes were always sold out, so sign up in advance! The technology with provided chest strap heart rate monitors and biking shoes is really cool! I've cruised plenty of times with Carnival now, and I know how to tailor an experience to have a wonderful time, avoid the crowds, mitigate any disappointments. I'm sorry that so many other people don't have the experience I have. I'd only book a spa cabin or a Havana cabin on this ship to insure a fabulous cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Carnival Vista Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 3.5 3.6
Entertainment 5.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 5.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 3.5 3.6
Enrichment 1.0 3.5
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6

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