1,122 Carnival Fantasy Cruise Reviews

This was our second cruise on Fantasy. We took the kids the first time about a year and a half ago and everyone had fun, so we decided to go for our anniversary with no kids. We flew in the day before due to the time of year and the ... Read More
This was our second cruise on Fantasy. We took the kids the first time about a year and a half ago and everyone had fun, so we decided to go for our anniversary with no kids. We flew in the day before due to the time of year and the possibility of snow in Tennessee. Southwest airlines was great and we stayed at an inexpensive hotel that night. We used Happy Limo service out of Orlando for the connection from Orlando to the Fantasy in Port Canaveral ( about 45-50 miles). We were very pleased with their service and will use them again if we do another cruise out of Port Canaveral. The Embarkation was very quick and everyone was very courteous. We got to the terminal very early and expected a few hours wait. We were very surprised to have boarded at 11:30am. We weren't expecting to be able to until around 1:pm!! The ship was dry docked a few months ago and you can tell it when you walk around the ship. There are a few cosmetic changes to the public areas and everything has a fresh coat of paint, but the Staterooms have been refurbished and are very pleasant. The entertainment on the ship was much better this time as compared to the last cruise. We enjoyed the Calypso band and the band in Cats Lounge each evening. I tried my luck in the Casino and walked away a few dollars for the better! Lets talk about our stops Freeport We did the snorkeling tour and loved it! definitely have a disposable underwater camera for this, the fish and coral are beautiful. It was about 80'F out but the water temp according to the guide was 77'F. That was the coldest 77' I've ever felt!! After about 5 minutes, you get used to it (hypothermia!) and it was worth the money. We did some brief shopping at the small straw market by the ship and got some good deals on T-shirts and stuff. Nassau If you have ever had the urge to get close to a dolphin, I know the excursion for you! We did the Blue Lagoon Dolphin encounter and it was incredible! We were very pleased with their operation and three of their dolphins were movie stars! They played the dolphin in the recent movie "Flipper". We stayed on the boat that evening and enjoyed night time Calypso on the Lido deck and danced the night away! Dinner The food in the formal dining room was great. All the food was very well prepared and everything that should have been hot was hot (better than last time). Service was a little slow, but we didn't mind. The food off the Lido deck was decent, nothing too spectacular, but it's a buffet. Of course you always have room service and Pizza! I would recommend this 4 day cruise to anyone who has never cruised before. It's long enough to let you see if you like cruising but not too long if you hate it. We enjoyed ourselves, but have decided that our next cruise will be 7 days and probably on Carnival. We like their structure, but we always keep our eyes open for the "Good Deal". Pmed777 Read Less
Sail Date February 2004
My husband and I booked the carnival fantasy as a late honeymoon. This was our first cruise. We liked the itinerary the best after researching all of the other cruise lines. We had a good time but there was definitely a lot more cons than ... Read More
My husband and I booked the carnival fantasy as a late honeymoon. This was our first cruise. We liked the itinerary the best after researching all of the other cruise lines. We had a good time but there was definitely a lot more cons than pros. First, We booked a balcony suite number V23, so that we would be able to enjoy the ocean air. We were very disappointed because there was a lifeboat obstructing half of the balcony. The people in V21 had an entire lifeboat in their balcony. Who wants to just sit and not be able to see out? I understand the need for lifeboats, but they should have put them on the rooms without windows or balconies like the other name brand cruise ships. We were also disappointed with limited activities onboard and for shore excursions you had to wait in a huge line when you first get onboard. Why can't they have reservations for shore excursions when you make your cruise reservations to eliminate the lines? It makes more sense to me. My husband and I are both in our early 20's and were surprised at the groups of people onboard. Many were single 30-40 year olds that only liked to party and get drunk. We were surprised there weren't many people in their 20's. I also do not recommend the spa onboard. I had a pedicure and a body wrap/massage. During the pedicure the lady lectured me about being out in the sun because I had gotten sunburned the first day. (Excuse me, I am a nurse, I think I know the harmful effects of the sun's rays). She also pressured me to buy the Elemis products and then when I did buy a couple she said I had to tip her the total of the products and the pedicure. Even though I didn't think she even deserved a tip, I gave her 20% of the total costs of the pedicure. What a rip off when you are going to relax to be lectured and pressured into buying things!!!! The last night of the cruise (the day at sea), the ship rocked terribly. You couldn't even stand up and walk around. My husband got very sea sick. Thank goodness I had bought some motion sickness medicine a few nights before because the gift shop was completely sold out. After my husband was feeling better, we went to dinner in the main dining room. Many people looked sick. I felt so sorry for them. Part of it was probably the lack of medicine at the gift shop. My husband said the men's bathroom was filled with vomit on the floor. As for shore excursions, we went to Atlantis resort. It was alright but definitely not worth 80.00 for two people. If you take a water taxi over to the resort. You will only have to pay about 45.00 for 2 people. The pros were excellent food and our cabin steward was also great. The captain's cocktail party was fun, the shows were pretty good, and the pictures were fun. I definitely would not recommend carnival fantasy. Read Less
Sail Date February 2004
I had heard so much about Carnival's ships before sailing and most of it was not good. I want to say that I found Carnival Fantasy a wonderful ship. After comparing my pictures with others I have seen, it appears that the Fantasy ... Read More
I had heard so much about Carnival's ships before sailing and most of it was not good. I want to say that I found Carnival Fantasy a wonderful ship. After comparing my pictures with others I have seen, it appears that the Fantasy has gone through some updating. There was less neon. Carpets were fresh and new in our stateroom. The ship was in wonderful condition. We sailed on a Sunday. Our embarkation was smooth. The entire process took less than 30 minutes. The people we worked with were very nice. Once onboard we went to our room. The room was bigger than I expected. I heard about "indirect lighting" in the cabins. We have nice, strong direct lighting. Our room was an inside cabin so it was nice to have it completely dark at night. The Lido deck food was great. The burgers and fries were as good as any restaurant. We just enjoyed exploring the ship before sailing. Once we sailed, we were all surprised at how rough it was. The wind was strong and the sea was rough. Many people on board got seasick including my wife and I. Unfortunately we did not take our medicine until after the sea got rough. By the next day we were better. Thoughts: Service- I had read about poor service on Carnival. Our service was well beyond expectations. Our room was kept in perfect condition. Room service was prompt. We had the late seating. We loved it. We could do all we wanted during the day and not have to worry about rushing back to the ship for dinner. Our table staff was amazing. We never lacked for anything at any time. We ordered two entrees almost every night. It was easy to trade out for something if your first choice was not what you wanted. Our staff was friendly. Occasionally you found someone around the ship who was a little grumpy but almost ever Food- The food quality was better than expected. Breakfast from the Lido restaurant lacked variety but was still good. We had lunch in the main restaurant as well as Windows on the Sea. Both offered good choices. The pizza and deli were nice surprises. Dinners were excellent. The portions were not big, but we found that as the cruise went one we were less hungry. I tried a few things and had some old favorites. The prime rib, lobster and NY strip were excellent. Desserts were beautiful but not very rich. We loved the food. We really liked the late seating because it was more laid back. We took our time and rarely left the dining room until after 10 PM. We spent a lot of time with our waiters and they were great. Also, our table mates could not have been better. Rooms- As I said, we had an inside room on the Verandah deck. The hall was quiet. Our room was plenty big. It was bright. There were several good choices on the TV. The bathroom was great. The vanity was bright. The shower was also great. Plenty of hot water. The room had just enough storage space. There is not much room for empty suitcases in the room. Activities- We did not participate in many activities. We found some quiet places around the ship. We enjoyed the music and just hanging out on deck. There was plenty to do. Excursions- Okay- we enjoyed what we did but admittedly it was a rip. Our bus ride around Freeport was informative but not worth $35 per person. Our snorkel was cancelled due to rough water. In Nassau, we went to Atlantis and it was interesting. It was probably worth the $35 charge. Freeport was okay but we loved Nassau. We had more fun just walking the streets of Nassau and meeting the people. Overall- We cannot wait to cruise again. Don't be afraid to sail on one of Carnival's older ships. The cost is much lower and the level of service is great. Some of the older reviews may reflect how things were but it appears that Carnival has worked hard to get the Fantasy to where it needs to be. If you have cruised with other lines, especially with the newer ships, don't miss out on the charm of this older ship. She is great and we can't wait to sail on her again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2004
My girlfriend and I went on our second cruise w/ Carnival (our first cruise was to Ensenada on the Ecstasy) and had a BLAST! We had to fly to Orlando a day early because there wasn't a flight out of San Diego early enough. So we ... Read More
My girlfriend and I went on our second cruise w/ Carnival (our first cruise was to Ensenada on the Ecstasy) and had a BLAST! We had to fly to Orlando a day early because there wasn't a flight out of San Diego early enough. So we stayed at the Clarion Hotel a couple of miles from the airport. The hotel as well as many others provides transportation to and from the airport at no cost. (They can also drop you off and pick you up at some of the nearby restaurants). The next day we took the free shuttle back to the airport and took the Mears transportation service to Port Canaveral. The bus was packed to the max w/ cruisers. The trip took about 45 minutes and the seats were more comfortable than the seats on the plane. The Carnival staff at the airport was very nice and courteous. We were then led to the terminal for check in. The place wasn't too shabby. I was expecting something more extravagant after seeing the Long Beach Cruise Terminal (looks like Epcot Center). Once again, it was packed to the max w/ cruisers but the line went by smoothly. Our cabin was what I expected (we had a 2 port hole cabin). They put together the two twin beds to make up a full sized bed. The room was really clean and the closet space very spacious. Once we got on the ship we immediately put some funds into our sail & sign cards. The line was really long and real slow. But it wasn't the worker's fault though; there was a group of people that were completely clueless about cruising. MAKE SURE YOU READ THE HANDBOOK BEFORE BOARDING. We had the 8:30PM seating for dinner. This gave us plenty of time to relax and get our drink on. Once we entered the dining area they had worker's lined up to walk groups to their tables. I thought that was really nice. The food wasn't too bad either. Just don't expect a lot, for example, I ordered prawns as an appetizer and got four pieces of shrimp. People have their choice to either go to the sit down dinner or the buffet on the Lido deck. The only show we made it to was one of the adult comedy shows at midnight. It was pretty cool but I've seen better (on the Ecstasy). First stop, Freeport. Freeport was a nice little place. When we arrived in Freeport I noticed that it was real hot, and humid. So make sure you pack your shorts and tank tops. I recommend you not do any of the ships shore excursions. They want lots of money and you can do the same thing on your own for less. First off we went to the Lucayan Beach (right by the Sheraton Hotel) to do a little sun bathing and snorkeling. When we went into the water w/ our snorkel stuff a couple next to us recommend that we go to Deadman's reef (Paradise Cove) for excellent snorkeling. After a few minutes at the beach we decide head over to Paradise Cove. Let me just add that the Sheraton has one of the best pool set ups that I've seen in my life. So off to Paradise Cove. It was a 30 minute ride but was well worth it because we got to see the residential areas of Freeport and a lot more (things you won't see on a shore excursion). Deadman's Reef was the best; they have an instructor that tells you how the reef is shaped and what to look out for and sends you on your way. We saw so many beautiful corals and fish. I recommend this place to everyone visiting Freeport. There were about 10-15 people on the beach so it seemed like it was our own private beach. The sun was out, weather was excellent. Just a beautiful day in paradise. Oh yeah, let me add that the cab drivers are really cool over there. Our driver offered to pick us up. Well back to the ship. Before we got on the ship we went to the straw market. They say not to buy stuff from there because they have the same stuff at Nassau. Plus I think that it wasn't too great. Formal night. Formal night was nice. Everyone dressing up like its prom night. They also have booths around the ship w/ different backgrounds for people to take pictures in front off. We didn't take part in the formal night on the Ecstasy cause we didn't want to lug around thee extra clothing, but I would recommend that you do participate in Formal night. Everyone dressed up + drinking = Good times. Next stop Nassau. Once we got off of the ship (about 8am) we got hassled by a lot of people. First a bunch of cabis asking if we need a ride and second, by a bunch of women asking my girlfriend if she wanted her hair braided. My advice, just keep on walking. We strolled through downtown and wanted to do a little shopping but the shops don't open till around 9'ish. As we were walking we saw the straw market. It seemed that every shop sold the same old trinkets. We ended up not buying anything. After our stroll through downtown Nassau we decided to head to Paradise Island and check out Atlantis. We took a cab to Atlantis (about $4 per person). Man, that place is NICE. We purchased the tour through Atlantis ($25) because if you don't, you won't have access to anything but the casino. Plus, $25 is way cheaper than what the ship was charging. The tour took us through "the dig", which is a nice aquarium that they have. It's about an hour long and afterwards you can stroll around where ever you want (because they give you a wristband) except for the pool and beach. We enjoyed Atlantis a lot, it's so beautiful and worth seeing. The casino wasn't too spectacular; I've seen better (Vegas). Fun day at Sea was fun. They have all kinds of activities on board like Ice carving and men's hairy chest contest. And lots of drinking!! It's only been 1 day since the cruise and I'm already planning on another. Email me if you have any questions. Have fun!! jigga619@cox.net Nov03 Read Less
Sail Date November 2003
This was my 6th cruise with Carnival, my husband's 3rd , and our 2nd cruise on the Fantasy and it will be our last. We were so disappointed with the cruise and the ship that we considered getting off at Freeport on Monday. Had it not ... Read More
This was my 6th cruise with Carnival, my husband's 3rd , and our 2nd cruise on the Fantasy and it will be our last. We were so disappointed with the cruise and the ship that we considered getting off at Freeport on Monday. Had it not been our 10th wedding anniversary trip and planned for so long, I think we would have. 1. The ship is filthy and in need of much repair. Carpeting is stained and dirty. The public restrooms are terrible and the service personnel do NOT clean them. Both of us noted on several occasions that personnel walked into the restroom, signed the sheet saying they had been there 10 min. and did nothing. My husband left a beer bottle sitting in the restroom by the casino on Mon. night and it was still there on Wed. night. Trash cans were not emptied and toilets were not cleaned. Electric hand dryers did not work most of the time. Why the maintenance men had to get out their scaffolding and replace lighting in the Grand Spectrum at dinner time is beyond me. 2. The food was horrible. The desserts were disgusting. We were seated at Table #178 for the late seating. Our waiter, Campbell, ignored us, got my order wrong 3 out of 4 nights, rushed us through our meals, removing our plates before we had finished, my husband had to ask at least 3 times for a glass of tea. The person sent to open my bottle of wine didn't know how to use the corkscrew and almost corked the bottle. One night I ordered a cappuccino and did not receive it until after everyone had finished their dessert. The floor in the Windows by the Sea area was always sticky and greasy. However, we got better service there than from our assigned table waiter. 3. Bar service is slow and practically non-existent in the casino. We established a relationship with Evanston and whenever he was working, we got excellent service but if he was not around we literally had to beg to get a drink. 4. Photographers left MUCH to be desired. This is the first cruise we have come home without any shipboard photos. All photos taken of us were just terrible - eyes closed, bad positioning, etc. Then we could never find our photos in the gallery........ 5. The art auctioneer was lax in getting us our invoice and when he finally did, and I returned the signed invoice, the Purser's office did not know what to do with it. I hope I receive my purchases. 6. When I booked the cruise, I was told we were guaranteed a Category 6A but by leaving our reservation as TBA we would get a minimum 2 category upgrade. In my book 6A to 6B is only 1 category. 7. Nassau Recommended restaurant - Senor Frog's - we were seated and after 10 minutes left because no one came to even take a drink order. The saving grace was that our stateroom was kept in excellent condition. Carter was a fantastic room steward and catered to our every need. And the cruise was not a total bust. We did meet some great people. The dealers in the casino were wonderful, especially, Brian and Gillian. And we just adored Tyrone and his music! We do not cruise every year but in the past have sailed at least every 3-5 years; however, due to our current financial position we are looking at sailing at least every year or two. I believe that we will start looking at Royal Caribbean or other cruise lines for future cruises. For us, Carnival no longer has the "Fun Ships". Read Less
Sail Date October 2003
First of all, after spending time reading reviews about cruises, people either love it or hate it. It is a bit scary, nobody wants a crappy vacation. This was my second cruise, the first being on Holland America to Alaska. I know HAL is ... Read More
First of all, after spending time reading reviews about cruises, people either love it or hate it. It is a bit scary, nobody wants a crappy vacation. This was my second cruise, the first being on Holland America to Alaska. I know HAL is generally a bit more higher-end, and for this last-minute-lower budget cruise I picked Carnival's Fantasy. I was very impressed with how quickly we boarded the ship, is was very smooth and efficient. The rooms are not bad at all. Lets face it, this is a cruise ship, not 5 Star hotel. The room reflects the price, besides if you want to spend a lot of time in your room, then you are planning the wrong vacation! The food: Dinners was awesome!!! There was only 1 dinner that was just "OK" and I think it was just pick as everyone else's selections looked better than mine. Breakfast and lunch we ate on the Lido deck and did lack something, it was the same basic stuff everyday, it was good and there was lots of it, it was just the same everyday. Service: Overall excellent. I only had 1 cocktail server who was VERY slow, otherwise had excellent service, especially in the Celebration dining room. I did get a bit angry about the unlimited beverage card. This is a good deal if you plan on drinking a lot of soda. It sells for like $18 and lets you have soda by the glass from any of the bars or in the dining room, otherwise you have to purchase soda. Well, apparently it does not work on the day of embarkation. Yes, they say it is good for your entire cruise; I guess they mean that BEFORE the boat gets back to port. I was annoyed to say the least! My shipboard charges for 2 were $1000, not counting $1500 of Art from the art auction and they wanted me to buy a diet coke on the last day, PLEASE! Its not the cost, it is the point. Entertainment: Some great/ some just OK, depends on your tastes. If you want Cirque du Soleil, go to Vegas, not a Carnival cruise ship. I personally hated the music in the disco (as did many people I talked to, but there was many things to do, sometimes making it hard to decide. Tips: Everyone talks about the auto-tips and many complain about it. It was not a big deal to me. I personally tip more that 15% for great service, the auto-tip probably saved me money, yes you can at any time have the tip adjusted, higher or lower. Holland America did not do auto-tip and I felt that the service was better on the ship. Shore Tours: Lots to choose from, Freeport did the dolphin encounter AWESOME worth the $95, Nassau saw Atlantis also worth it. Both of these trips can be done for a few dollars cheaper if you hire your own transportation and do some leg work. You might save 10% this way. OK this is too damn long... In summary, we had a great time. There were a few bad things (like a stolen watch out of my suitcase), a limited lunch selection, etc., but for the ease and price I cannot complain too much. Food:B Service:A- Entertainment:B+ Overall: B+ Love to answer any questions! Happy Cruising! Read Less
Sail Date August 2003
First, let me state this was my first cruise. My friend and I decided to see what it was like to venture out on a cruise. We didn't want to spend a lot of money and stay a long time so we opted for the budget and time choice of ... Read More
First, let me state this was my first cruise. My friend and I decided to see what it was like to venture out on a cruise. We didn't want to spend a lot of money and stay a long time so we opted for the budget and time choice of Carnival. I've heard Royal is much better as far a food and quality of travelers. However, I really enjoyed the cruise. The food was fine, not gourmet, but I wasn't expecting gourmet either. The entertainment was fabulous! They had great Vegas-style shows that kept us going back to them so much we missed dinner in the dining room. When we docked, we took up on one of the excursions to Paradise Island and over to the Blue Lagoon. We really enjoyed both. One of the main things I loved about the cruise was we relaxed and were entertained so much the 4 days felt like 7. There was so much to do and a night's rest was so wonderful I think it was the first time in years I actually "rested" and not just slept. There is a difference. The ship was old and it held up very well. I would definitely recommend new travelers to give Carnival Paradise a try. Read Less
Sail Date July 2003
This was a first cruise for my husband and I. We had a wonderful time on the ship and the Carnival staff was excellent. Always something to do and they had something to fit pretty much any interests you have. The constant availability of ... Read More
This was a first cruise for my husband and I. We had a wonderful time on the ship and the Carnival staff was excellent. Always something to do and they had something to fit pretty much any interests you have. The constant availability of food and 24hr room service was awesome. Fantasy is one of the older/smaller ships so it actually made us first timers a little more at ease. It was easy to explore and learn your way around. Two things that I would change on my next cruise, would be to invest in a better room. We had an outside stateroom with a window/midship on the 6th floor (empress deck) and honestly the room was just too confined for our tastes. A balcony would have been the better way to go. We also sailed at the end of February which was cold most of the time on deck and soooo windy. Another valuable lesson learned was to take advantage of the shore excursions booked directly through Carnival. Being from Florida and used to tourist surroundings, we thought we would take charge of our own tours. Wrong. In the Bahamas, you have tenders all trying to take you somewhere at different prices. We tried in vain to find this place in Freeport that rented power boats, so we could explore on our own. We never found it. They wanted to sell us "package deals" to the beaches, etc., which they most likely make a profit from doing. I don't begrudge anyone trying to make an extra buck, but no one wanted to steer us in the direction "we" wanted to go. I realized later that had we set something up through the ship, we might have had a better time on land. I do highly recommend a visit to the Atlantis Hotel. This place is amazing! The in-ground aquarium is a one of a kind. A little hard to take pictures during the day, however. They are obviously used to the tourist traffic and we had no problems while there and were free to roam around. Lunch was very good at one of several restaurants within. Of course, a trip to either Freeport or Nassau would not be complete without a trip to the straw market. Interesting. I can see why Carnival has such a good reputation, as we encountered no problems, easy to check in, ship was pretty much immaculate and great/friendly service all around. Believe me when I say.....when you pass through the gulf stream and enter the Carribean Sea with its turquoise waters....you'll think you've died and gone to heaven! Hope you have as good a time as we did! Read Less
Sail Date February 2002
I hadn't originally planned on this three day Carnival excursion to the Bahamas being my first cruise. But after I booked the NCL Norway for February, I still had money left over in my budget for a quick getaway over Christmas. And ... Read More
I hadn't originally planned on this three day Carnival excursion to the Bahamas being my first cruise. But after I booked the NCL Norway for February, I still had money left over in my budget for a quick getaway over Christmas. And at $550 for a Category 4 Inside cabin all to myself, (as a single traveler), I couldn't pass it up. (It sure beat spending time with the relatives, but I won't go into *that*!) Embarkation Carnival and I certainly got off on the wrong foot. Having to start the journey in Port Canaveral, nearly an hour away from the nearest airport (Orlando), gave me pause. The hop from my home in Washington DC to Orlando was a quick two hour jaunt. I arrived at noon. I quickly found my way out the terminal to the Mears bus pickup point. There was no bus there, but a Carnival representative showed me where to put my luggage and gave me a boarding pass. I sat down on the pavement and waited. Forty-five minutes. No bus. An hour. No bus. Finally our bus materialized and pulled up. About twenty minutes later, loaded with about sixty Fantasy cruisers, the bus pulled away and made it's way toward the Space Coast. A little after 2:30pm we arrived at the Carnival terminal. But we couldn't get in the building. People were crammed into the terminal entry area. But they were kept from entering the upstairs boarding area because it was already jammed with people. It was as if all 2000 passengers arrived at the terminal at the same time. It took over an hour to wind our way through the maze of check-in, security, and boarding. At a quarter to four I found my cabin, and then hurried upstairs, only to find that the welcome-aboard buffet stopped serving at 3:30, and that the introductory and port activity lectures were already over. My advice: If possible, find your own transportation from Orlando to the port; either cab or rental car. That way you stay somewhat in control of the last leg of your journey. If that is not possible - arrive at the airport no later than 11am for the Mears bus. Ship and Cabin The Fantasy is a ten-year-old ship. At that age most ships are ready to retire from prime time and be sold off to the budget cruise lines. That said, Carnival is to be commended for keeping it in such good condition. There was little evidence of wear. Obviously they are replacing carpets, paint, and fixtures as necessary. So, while no one is going to mistake this for 'state of the art', it still makes for a very pleasant cruise experience. My cabin was Upper deck 180 - inside toward the aft. There were three decks of cabins below me, and one deck above me. I now know the advantage of a cabin on the upper decks. All the public space is above, so the higher in the ship your cabin, the less walking you have to do to and from events. Considering this ship is the equivalent of a ten story building - that is no small matter. If you are located at the bottom level and want to, say, lounge in the Jacuzzi on the top deck - you have two choices: walk up ten floors of stairs, or wait for a crowded elevator and get in and watch it stop on every floor picking up people along the way. Neither option is particularly appealing - though some may see the built in exercise of ten flights of stairs as a plus. The cabin was a nice size - with a bigger feeling than I expected. Of course, I had the room all to myself - which would make a difference. The bathroom was fine - what's all this complaining about tiny bathrooms and showers? (People who think this is tight should try a sleeping compartment on an Amtrak train where the shower and the toilet are a single narrow closet.) The carpeting a furnishings were simple - but in good condition. There was even a bland sense of style in way the room was put together. Outside cabin vs. Inside - I found the Inside cabin perfectly fine. Advantages: cheaper (obviously); total darkness makes it easy to sleep as late as you desire; a little less rolling action in heavy seas. Disadvantages: No natural light - just built in fluorescents. Oddly enough, I did not consider the lack of a view as a disadvantage. From what I could see the standard outside cabins don't have all that much of a view. When I want to see something I'll go upstairs. Now, if someone were to offer me a room with a balcony - that would be a different matter. But, of course the price jump there is significant. As for the ship's decor - what can I say? If you like neon, chrome and Plexiglas, you'll be in heaven on the Fantasy. To some, it's modern art. To others it's the height of Vegas tackiness. I'm not a fan - but I knew what it was going to be like when I booked it, and I was making a decision based on sailing dates and price. I will admit that the ship comes off better at night than during the day. Dining The dining experience on the Fantasy was better than I had been led to believe. The food was good, and well presented. The portions were sometimes small, but nobody was stopping you from order multiples of anything - so if you were still hungry it was your own fault. Keep in mind that what we are talking about here is very good quality hotel banquet food; not the Four Seasons. A five star restaurant chef is not going to waste their career designing gourmet food for Carnival cruise lines. The service was as good or better than what you will find in most good restaurants. This is not surprising considering these people are pretty much working just for tips. So they aim to*please*. They will tend to hurry you along, though. They have over 2000 people to feed in two seatings so don't think you are going to linger your way through a four hour seven course dinner. Lunch in the dining room was very nicely done - but I just didn't care for the formal seating. Breakfast - the same. The breakfast buffet on the Lido deck was plentiful: scrambled eggs, omelets made to order, French toast, pancakes, bacon, ham, sausage, cereal, and fresh fruit. Add to that the luxury of being able to get up whenever you felt like it and take your breakfast outside watching the waves and clouds go by - so why would anyone want to eat in the dining room? Entertainment and Activities The evening musical shows in the Universal lounge were entertaining. The dancers were fresh and energetic and the live orchestra was brassy (literally) and right on the money. Let me digress one moment on a pet peeve. When people refer to these as 'Broadway' shows or 'Broadway quality' shows, I cringe. What we have here is second tier Las Vegas entertainment. I don't mean that as a put down - it's just what it is. These young performers are fine, but lets' face it - not one of them would make it through the first audition for the revival of 'Chicago' in New York. They don't have the technique, the training, or the experience. Yet. What we have here are young performers hopefully on their way up. This is legitimate theater work, and a credit that might open the door for more professional work. Nothing wrong with that. Just don't call it 'Broadway quality'. As for the other entertainers, I didn't see the comics, so I can't comment, although the reviews I heard the morning after were mixed. Which is pretty normal for any comedy performance. I enjoyed Rich playing in the piano bar. In addition to his smooth style I watched him gently handle a drunk older woman who insisted on keeping a very loud running commentary going about his playing. He's obviously a pro at this situation. This is good ship if you like to have a lot of planned activities: game shows, hairy chest contest, beauty demonstrations. I am not one of those people. Still, I had paid my money, so for the first day and a half I would stop by and sample some of the goings on, but it just wasn't for me. Anytime someone insists I do the Macarena, I take off in the opposite direction. (I think that damn song from 1996 is going to live forever on cruise ships. What is it about the Macarena and the Village People singing 'YMCA' that stimulates people? I think that there's a master's thesis in there somewhere.) By the second day I found my joy in the cruise experience. I found a nice spot on the aft deck that was sheltered from the wind; I pulled over a deck chair; I put on my headphones and listed to music as I watched the sun sparkle in the water and the clouds rush past. I would think about my life... how beautiful the world can be... what God was like for me... just anywhere my mind wanted to drift. Sometimes I would pull out a novel I had been given for Christmas, and just sit there reading with the sun overhead and the sea passing by. I had found 'the cruise within'. That was worth the price of the trip. Also sitting on the deck watching the sun go down. And sitting in the whirlpool on the abandoned aft deck at about 10pm on a cold windy night, burrowing down into the bubbles as I studied the stars overhead. For those moments it was like I was on my own private yacht slicing through the Caribbean. I think this may be one of the aspects of cruising that makes it ideal for families, or mates with diverse interests or personalities. You can pick and choose what you want to do and really customize the experience according to what you want to get out of it. Port Activities. I just want to mention one thing about my Nassau experience. There were *six* cruise ships berthed there on December 24th, our only day in port. I had planned to walk around and see some of the city - but after a half an hour I saw that would be impossible. I couldn't move on any of the streets - they were so jam packed. You couldn't navigate around shops to look at merchandise. What I should have done, in retrospect, was to take a cab to the other side of town, or to Paradise Island. But by then, the rain was threatening and I didn't want to get caught in it - so I hightailed it back to the ship. Summary The Fantasy is geared toward people who enjoy a lot of organized activities - but can be enjoyed by anyone willing to carve their own path through the day. The food and service are very good, and the ship is in great shape for it's ten years at sea. The entertainment is good - but this ain't Broadway. Word to the wise: leave extra time to deal with Port Canaveral. Earlier is better. I don't think I will sail Carnival again anytime soon, but I would not hesitate to recommend it to someone looking for an action packed excursion. Read Less
My friend and I left Hartford on 10/20 and arrived in Orlando at around 11:30pm. We proceeded to the Dollar car rental counter and were denied a rental even though we had a confirmation. Why? They did a credit check and since my credit is ... Read More
My friend and I left Hartford on 10/20 and arrived in Orlando at around 11:30pm. We proceeded to the Dollar car rental counter and were denied a rental even though we had a confirmation. Why? They did a credit check and since my credit is not good, they denied me. So, here we are the night before our cruise and no car. Before we freaked, we found another company that would rent us a car, but made us purchase the insurance so we paid over $100 more than expected! We arrived at our hotel, confirmation number in hand, at around 1230am...and guess what...they had given our room away..and had none left! We left there and went next door to the Howard Johnson and got a moldy smelling room. The next morning we drove to Port Canaveral and parked. We forgot about our previous problems once we had the ships in sight! The Fantasy looked a bit smaller than the Disney Wonder and the Royal Carib. ships, but not too much. It was raining lightly as we got to the port...we gave our bags to a porter and went in to check in. We filled out the one paper that didn't come with the docs and were through the process in about 10 minutes. We proceeded to the line to board, but had to wait about 30-45 minutes since we were a bit early. They went through the line and started handing out the sail and sign cards and room keys before boarding had begun. This was nice! Once they started boarding we were on within 20 minutes. We boarded and immediately went looking for our room on the lowest deck--Riviera. We had a Cat 6A--R100. We quickly found it and when we opened the door, we were surprised to see the room had been decorated with colorful birthday banners, streamers, a balloon, a cake, keychains, and a bottle of champagne on ice! Turns out that the decorations were compliments of my grandmother and the champagne was from a TA at work. The room reminded me of a dorm room. It was plenty roomy for us and was in decent shape. There was a little corrosion around the window, but barely noticeable. The bathroom was very clean and there was plenty of storage space. The beds were scary the first time we sat on them, but we really grew to like them once we slept on them. They were surprisingly comfortable! Oh, I must mention that as we arrived at our deck, we noticed a faint septic odor in the hall and in our room. My friend thought it was diesel (they were fueling up right outside our window), but I thought differently. Regardless, it wasn't bad. After seeing the room and having some champagne, we scouted out the boat and ate some food. The buffet was ok, nothing spectacular. We were just in awe at the ship itself. We couldn't believe we were actually there. From everything I had read, I expected the ship to be a bright, gaudy spectacle. This was far from the truth. Some of the carpet was wild, but for the most part, the decor was much more toned down than I anticipated. For her age, the Fantasy was VERY CLEAN. The common areas were maintained well. Once in a while you'd come across a stained carpet but that's to be expected. I always hear a lot of complaints about elevators on this board, so here's my take on the elevators--the glass elevators in the atrium were very busy with people and always operating. We used them once in a while. The elevators near the Universe Lounge (a bank of 4) were also very busy. I noticed that a couple were out of service now and again, but not for the whole cruise. We generally used the stairs to go everywhere. Let me tell you, coming up from the Riviera deck to the Verandah deck is a haul by stairs, but that just made us hungry for more PIZZA! Speaking of food, like I said before, the buffet was ok...salad bar was nice and the Pizza was AWESOME!!! I wish I had a few slices right now! The dining room was nice and the food was very good. The jerk pork with plantain sauce was my favorite. They brought me a cake and sang happy birthday and did the same for my friend 2 days later. Nice touch. Our headwaiter was nice, but it was our assistant waiter stole the show. He was a young Filipino guy named Ronald. He ALWAYS had a big smile and was soo nice. We nicknamed him Smiley and he seemed to like that! At our table, we had 3 corrections officers from New York, 2 ladies (that never came back after the 1st night) and 2 other young ladies in their early 20's that we immediately became friends with. They were very outgoing and CRAZY! We ended up hanging out with them for the entire cruise. They definitely made our cruise! They had smuggled rum onboard in spring water bottles and had a flask at the dinner table to make rum and cokes. When I saw that, I knew we'd party with them! Oh, the first night the boat was rocking and it was hot in the dining room so I felt a bit queasy, but not enough to make me feel sick. I didn't let it bother me and once we got out of the dining room we were fine. I asked around and was told that that rocking was nothing. Oh well, I am a newbie. The next day we got up and were in Freeport. We took a taxi to Deadman's Reef (or Cove..can't remember) to go snorkeling. Neither of us had snorkeled before. Freeport has a new looking port with a straw market (we never went there so I can't comment on it) and it looks like there is a lot more that will be opening there soon. Anyway, it was raining lightly but we didn't care. Once we got the hang of the gear, snorkeling went smoothly (only an occasional mouth of salt water). We had to swim out pretty far to get to the reef, but it was shallow most of the way. Once we made it to the reef we were in awe. There were huge schools of fish, giant brain coral, among many other types. We saw enormous parrot fish (we're talking 3 feet long) and some fish that you'd see in an aquarium---bright blue ones, yellow ones, etc. The waves were a bit rough on the opposite side of the rocks near the reef, but they had rafts anchored out there to hold onto and rest. We snorkeled for about an hour, went back to shore and had a beer and ate our packed lunch (compliments of room service!) then we went back out for more. I have to say that it was an incredible experience. If you go to Freeport, you owe it to yourself to snorkel at Deadmans Reef. Trust me. I think it was about $7 per person each way by taxi and about $8 or $10 for use of the area and all of the gear. DO NOT RENT THE GEAR ON THE SHIP! It's expensive and poor quality. The reef had very nice gear. We had to be back onboard by 3:30pm and we made it no problem. Our taxi driver was cool and very chatty. The area was very poor and kind of depressing on the ride over, but the people seemed happy and laid back...which is a refreshing change from the people here in CT. Unfortunately, the people in Nassau weren't as friendly. That night, we ate as usual and partied VERY late until about 3 or 4am and had a blast with our new friends. Oh, we also saw the comedian at midnight. He was HILARIOUS!!!!!!!!!!! We sat in the front row and enjoyed it tremendously. The next morning we woke up in Nassau. We were pretty hung over, but weren't going to let that get us down! We grabbed our friends and since we enjoyed snorkeling so much in Freeport, we rented the gear on the boat and took a cab to the Marriot on Paradise Island. We went out behind the Marriot to Cabbage Beach and walked about 15 minutes up the beach and went snorkeling (this was a spot recommended on the ship). We were VERY disappointed. There was nothing there! Not even many fish, and NO coral. Oh well, we just hung out on the beach for a while then headed back to the boat to shower and change. After cleaning up, the 4 of us walked into Nassau and did a bit of shopping. We also ate at this dive called Burger House. It was good and reenergized us. We bought some souvenirs and a couple of bottles of booze. We were amazed at how cheap it was! But, a 6 pack of Coke was $6. We had taken the Evian bottle from our room ($3.25) and replaced the water with Bacardi Limon to smuggle back on the ship. This was quite a sight to see us pouring a bottle of rum into an Evian bottle on the curb along the main drag in Nassau. We didn't care though...it was something to tell people when we got home! And, it worked. Also, even though they x-rayed our bags when we got back onboard, they didn't take our friends Coke or our other bottle of Captain Morgan. There was a woman at a table next to the stairs that was collecting booze that people had bought, but we just got right on the elevator and went to our rooms with no problem! This night was full of partying both on and off of the ship and once again we retired late...around 3am.... The next day was our day at sea. We hung out on deck and watched the ice carving demo. Mainly we just did some people watching and chatted with friends. It was a beautiful hot day that we enjoyed. The day was followed by another night of partying. We didn't like the comedian this night as much as the other so we left early. We had met a bunch of others during the cruise and we all hung out and chatted for a while until we were so tired we could hardly stand and then we retired, knowing we were debarking in the morning. When we awoke the next morning, we were in port and quickly got ready and went for food. We were both hurting from the booze and I couldn't even eat. Debarking was smooth as silk and we were out in no time. Final thoughts.....on the days and nights in port, our hall and room smelled very strongly like sewer. There was a sewer vent a couple of cabins down on the outside of the ship. You could see it from the pier. While this was pretty gross to put it bluntly, we tried not to let it get to us. We had people offering to let us sleep in their rooms and that was nice but we dealt with it. It only seemed to be a problem for about 10 cabins in our vicinity (I don't know if the interior cabins were as affected). The people 2 doors down called and complained and they sent a plumber down. When we saw him, we brought him to our room and he poured something in the drains and left. We knew this wasn't the problem...Oh well. Unfortunately, we didn't log an official complaint. We didn't want to waste our limited time repacking and moving to another cabin, etc. In retrospect, maybe we should have...that way we might have received some coupons towards another cruise. I'm still sending a letter though. We had a wonderful time overall. We only paid $780 total for the cabin, including taxes and fees. We did our own airfare for $109pp round trip from Hartford to Orlando. We can't wait to take another one....we're looking into the Carnival Pride for next year. Well, I think I'll stop now.......Thanks for reading! rjc311@yahoo.comNovember 2001 Read Less
My husband and I went on our first cruise together and we had a wonderful time. It did help me a lot to check out the "Cruise Critic" website for helpful advice. Here is our trip--- We landed in Orlando and took the Mears ... Read More
My husband and I went on our first cruise together and we had a wonderful time. It did help me a lot to check out the "Cruise Critic" website for helpful advice. Here is our trip--- We landed in Orlando and took the Mears transportation service. The bus was completely full but we did leave just a few minutes after getting on the bus. The staff was courteous which is always nice. The trip to Port Canaveral took about 45 minutes. When we got to the port it was raining, so that did make getting off the bus and checking our luggage a little crazy. Overall it went smoothly. After entering the area that we check in we were overwhelmed by all the people, but to our surprise the entire process of checking in (checking birth certificates and ID's) and getting our Sail &Sign cards. We thought with all the long lines it would take forever...we were wrong. The staff moved us along quickly and were nice about doing so. We landed in Orlando at 1:00 and were in our ship cabin at 3:00 pm (not bad we thought!!) Our cabin was a nice size with a window view (we had a oceanfront stateroom). It definitely showed its age, with a little musty smell I thought. But it was clean...which is always the most important. I was warned about the loud noise of the toilet when flushed...I definitely appreciated that cuz it is loud and a shock for the first time! Bring your hair dryer! There were some channels on the TV (very static though) and had a New York station, which was nice to be able to keep in touch with the world. For the 2 of us, there was plenty of room for clothes to put away. Bed was comfortable too. We had the 8:30 seating, and liked that. It gave us plenty of time to relax before dinner at the different lounges/bars! We did request to be changed to another table the 2nd night. The first night the others at the table didn't seem to want to talk about much. I enjoy to visit with others and see what everyone did that day or see where they live. The food was good every night, a great selection of choices, great service too. My husband enjoyed spending a little time in the casino, but I thought the casino staff was pretty stuffy! But at least they didn't get much of our money!! It was the formal night for dinner and before dinner there was a Captain's Cocktail hour, with appetizers and free cocktails. To our big disappointment we went all dressed up and sat there for 30 minutes without anyone coming and asking us if we'd like anything to drink (they had servers to give the food out...which they never made it to our cocktail table). We thought it wasn't good to have that type of service because everywhere else on the ship the staff was really assertive at coming by to see if we'd like a cocktail, BUT when they were giving out free drinks for only an hour, they only had just a few staff members serving us. As much as we spent in cocktails it wouldn't have hurt them to spend a little on us!! After not being served we went to another lounge area and ordered our own drink! Everyone we met was very nice. We met a wonderful couple at our dinner table and have exchanged addresses to send them some pictures. The age range was very "around the table"! Plenty of families, couples, elderly (some in wheel chairs), and singles! I talked to some parents that had their kids in the children's activities and they really liked them all. They said they hardly saw their kids cuz they were having so much fun! The shows are fun (Vegas one we liked a lot!). For us, we didn't see much after the 10:30 show...there is so much activities that are really late. For us it's a long day after going into the Port's, activities, and dinner... midnight comes real fast when the pillow is calling your name!! HA! We went to the midnight buffet - to take pictures of all the neat food preparation ... we didn't eat but it was neat to see! Fancy creative art! We bought pictures (got expensive though!) but was nice to have! I didn't like the Straw Market at all in Nassau. Everything was the same and they constantly ask you to buy something! The Straw Market in Freeport is much better (Lucaya area). The weather for us wasn't too good on our trip. Extremely windy, so it made it almost impossible to go to the beaches (sand was flying everywhere). We went to Atlantis, Nassau (don't do the cruise ship excursion...they want $45/person to do what we did!) Take the ferry (which is right next to the Port) for $6 round trip and walk to Atlantis (3-4 blocks away from the ferry dock) and than you can walk around Atlantis leisurely. We found out that there is nothing any different about taking the tour...they take you to the same places. The staff at Atlantis will not let anyone access the neat pool area or any of the outside beaches unless you are staying there at the hotel. So it makes no difference if you have the tour or not. We enjoyed the Atlantis, very beautiful and worth seeing. The casino was really neat walking around and looking at all the fancy artwork. The departure procedure went very smooth without any problems. Our luggage had to be in the hallway the night before by midnight, so they could prepare for everyone's departure. When we entered the large area with our level's luggage it was kinda hectic but we were in and out of there in about 5 minutes. We enjoyed the entire cruise...we only wish the weather was nicer. The only day that we got to lay out was the "fun day" that we were at sea all day. We want to start planning our next cruise but our next one will be with our 3 kids! We know that they will have lots of fun!!! ddtlwoods@networksplus.net July 2003 Read Less
The theme of this trip was "freebies," and by the end of our adventure, we had nicknamed ourselves "The Freebie Queens." I would also like to point out that the negatives are mentioned only to relay my experience, ... Read More
The theme of this trip was "freebies," and by the end of our adventure, we had nicknamed ourselves "The Freebie Queens." I would also like to point out that the negatives are mentioned only to relay my experience, and certainly did not ruin my vacation. In fact, we were joking about the "bad stuff" for the rest of the trip. We had a late, but non-stop flight from Austin to Orlando Saturday night, departing at 8:45 PM. We sat in the last row and ordered several drinks, while tipping our flight attendant generously. Several people have told me that flight attendants are not supposed to accept tips, but this guy did, and we were treated well as a result. Just before we landed, I asked him if he knew of a good place to eat near the airport or on the way to Cocoa Beach, that would still be open after midnight. He suggested taking a left out of the airport, where we would find something like a Chili's or Bennigan's. Then he asked us if we were on vacation and said he'd be right back. He returned with 2 barf bags (clean ones), each containing 2 bottles of Finlandia vodka and 2 cans of Bloody Mary mix, and told us to have fun. Great, one more thing to pack in my suitcase! LOL We picked up our rental car and headed left out of the airport. I immediately saw a sign for a Steak and Shake, 2 miles ahead, open 24 hours. Well, I grew up in the Midwest and had many meals at Steak and Shake as a kid, so I HAD to go. My friend Renea had never had Steak and Shake, and she loved it too. The burgers tasted exactly as I remembered and really hit the spot. Okay, on to Port Canaveral/Cocoa Beach. A word of warning for anyone making this drive at night, beware of deer! We saw lots of them, but luckily, they all stayed on the side of the road. Also, the exit numbers go in reverse order when you get into Cocoa Beach, and the sign we were looking for was behind a tree. After figuring things out the hard way, we finally made it to the Econo Lodge. A dump, in my opinion, but clean and cheap. Another tip, ask for a room on the first floor, there were no elevators, only stairs. We saw a cat poking his head out of the dumpster while we were parking, pretty amusing... We returned our car to Hertz in the morning, they have a free shuttle to the port. It's always so exciting when you first see the ship(s)! The Disney and a Royal Caribbean ship were also docked. EMBARKATION No problemo! Had to do the pier pick-up for documents (since originals were lost in the mail). There was no line at all at that counter, but could see people lining up to board and check-in. We filled out our documents and got in line to check in, only had to wait about 10 minutes. While we were checking in, they started boarding, so by the time we got over there, we took our pics for the Sail and Sign cards and walked right on the ship. Total time from being dropped off by Hertz and getting onboard was about 30 minutes. FIRST DAY We had been assigned early dinner seating and wanted to change it to late. We were told to see the maitre'd between 2-4 PM. We went to the cabin, dropped off our carry-ons, changed into our swimsuits and it was time to party! But not so fast - had to stop at the spa first to make appointments for the day at sea. This is when freebie #2 came along, we were immediately approached by one of the women who worked there. She asked us if we would like to be models for the spa tour that began at 1:15, and get free treatments! Of course we said yes! We ate lunch and came right back. I ended up getting the LT oxygen facial and collagen eye treatment (worth about $140) and my friend got the cellulite wrap thing (worth about $190?) for free! The only catch was, we had to lay there while several groups of people taking the spa tour came into the room, and we had to listen to their treatment spiel about 20 times, I could recite it all for you now. LOL The woman who did my facial was named Mika, from Holland, she had a lovely accent and the facial was wonderful. It's normally a 55-minute facial, but since she had to stop every time a new group came along, it ended up being 1 1/2 hours. We got out of there just in time for the muster drill. We then headed out to the Lido deck for some sun and drinks of the day. I got a pink souvenir glass, with the intention of keeping it, more about that later. The Captain made an announcement that we'd be leaving late, due to a medical emergency. We had heard from some other passengers later that they had to stand outside in the direct sunlight for a long time with their lifejackets on, and an elderly woman became faint and was taken away in an ambulance. We were in the shade during all that, but my lifejacket had the funk! Boy, was it stinky! Carnival should use some Febreeze on them occasionally. DININGSince we missed the maitre'd between 2-4 PM to reschedule, we decided to keep our 6:15 dinner time the first night and deal with him then. He was very accommodating, switched us to the 8:30 seating for the remainder of the cruise. If we had not wanted later seating anyway, we definitely would have changed after the first night. Not only was our table in a terrible location, but our dinner companions were sooo boring! One elderly couple was rude to our waiter, Winston. While we were all still being served our main course, the grumpy old man barked to Winston, "Don't you have any parmesan cheese?" Winston was polite and said he'd get it for him right away. The bus station was right behind me, I could have done without the clattering and constantly having to duck out of the wait staff's way. Another woman at our table, who we nicknamed "Jabba the Hut," just sat there eating and literally stared at me, without saying a word, the entire time. It was so annoying. I wanted to toss a piece of bread at her to see if she'd blink. Renea and I did our best to make polite conversation, the two woman to my right were nice, but everyone else needed to take tips from Miss Manners. Despite the awkwardness, the food was good - I had the pumpkin soup, Delice of the Sea entrEe and key lime pie for dessert. The second night was formal night and we had a much better table with more lively dinner companions. The lobster was a little rubbery, but tasty. I had the artichoke hearts salad and chocolate mousse for dessert. I didn't catch our waitress' name, but do remember she was from Romania. There were literally 15 birthdays and about 4 anniversaries, including one at our table. I was jonesing for my coffee while the entire wait staff had to sing to all the birthday and anniversary folks. No biggie, just bad timing for me. The third night we were wiped out from swimming with the dolphins and snorkeling all day, and didn't want to dress for dinner, so we just hit the buffet and took our food out to the side deck. I had a little bit of everything, pasta, prime rib, it was all good. We also saw a gorgeous sunset over Nassau, a perfect ending to a perfect day. The last night we were at the same table, but had completely different dinner companions, who were all nice. I had the fish, but should have ordered the steak, it looked delicious and everyone who ordered it liked it. I had a regular salad and apple pie for dessert. The top crust on the pie is like its own pastry, it was really good. We had all our breakfasts and lunches on the Lido deck. Everything was yummy, except they really make the sausages look unappetizing, floating in a vat of greasy water. I'm not a big fan of sausage anyway, but the floating turd effect of these sausages really turned me off. We had plenty of pizza, which was excellent. The only snappy service from anyone on the ship came from the "Pizza Nazi." I simply asked him if there was any Margherita pizza available (since it IS listed on the menu). All they had at the time was pepperoni, sausage and plain cheese. He said "We don't do special orders!!" Well, I wasn't asking him to make me anything special, I was only asking if a slice was already available. Again, no biggie, but he was a jerk ("no pizza for you!"). Renea made us a yummy ice cream concoction, cookie on the bottom, ice cream, chocolate syrup and nuts on top of that. Mmmmm...and of course, room service - the blt's and brownies are excellent! We only made it one midnight buffet, the Gala buffet. It was spectacular! Martha Stewart would have been proud - I never imagined that purple onions would make such gorgeous flower petals! ENTERTAINMENT This is a toughie - the Fun Ship atmosphere gets to me after awhile. It's just a little too "game-showy" and cheesy for me. Our cruise director, Mark Hawkins was pretty funny. The late night comedian the first night was good, but he relied on cuss words too much to get his laughs. Not that this offends me, but it's the "easy" laugh, not very clever or original. And being from Austin, the Live Music Capital of the World, I consider myself a music snob. I play music, I'm a music trivia whiz, I live, breathe, eat, and sleep music. That said, the Time Machine band in the Cat's Lounge was actually very good. Their bass player rocks! And he plays a 6-string bass, which is always cool to me. He also has a Music Man bass. On the last night, he asked me where I was from, when I told him Austin, he knew about our musical reputation. I asked him why he hardly plays his Music Man and he was so impressed that I knew what it was, that he took off his 6-string and switched to the Music Man. The guitar-playing guy with the headset and drum machine near the Bistro sucked. We tried the Cleopatra's Lounge a few times for the piano bar, but nothing was really happening in there. I mentioned on my comment card that the karaoke should be at different times, they had it from 8:30-10 on 3 of the 4 nights and I always missed it due to our late dinner seating. PORTS FREEPORT Kudos to all who suggested Deadman's Reef!! We took a cab with 3 other passengers to Paradise Cove (Hello to Wil, Heather and Chad, if you guys managed to find this!). We all had a great time. The beach is beautiful and very secluded. There were maybe 2 other people there besides the staff, and only another 5 or 6 showed up the rest of the day. One woman who was incredibly tan, with her straw hat, made the perfect replica of the Corona commercial, especially with the Disney ship visible on the horizon. The snorkeling was fantastic, the drinks, food and souvenirs were all cheap. If you're into conch shells, this was the place to buy them - $2 for the large ones that they sell for $5 or more in town and in Nassau. You do have to swim out to the reef, but it's not far, and there are plenty of resting areas to stand, just watch your step! The water was a little choppy behind the reef, since this is where the waves break. I was glad that I brought along my own "dry-top" snorkel, which kept the water out. While everyone else was gagging on salt water, I had no problem. Our cab driver was to pick us up at 2 PM, but called to let us know she'd be ½ hour late. Aw, shucks, we'd have to spend another 30 minutes in paradise. No sweat, I had some grilled conch and a Kalik beer while we waited. We did a little bit of shopping in their version of the Straw Market, everyone had the same stuff. I bought a couple fridge magnets and we got back on the ship. NASSAU I had already booked a dolphin swim for the morning. When we got off the ship, the cab drivers were rounding up passengers. We ended up in a van with a group of girls going to the public beach, and a few people going to Atlantis. Our driver drove like a crazy NY cab driver, racing and honking, didn't get out of the way for an ambulance, he was nuts! He intended to drop us off at the ferry terminal first, but took the girls to the beach instead. I was getting a little nervous about the time, but told myself to chill out. If you book anything on your own with Dolphin Encounters, make sure you bring your confirmation receipt that they mail you, they asked me for it. Luckily, I had it. The Paradise Island ferry terminal is a nice facility with a full bar, gift shop and clean restrooms. Blue Lagoon is gorgeous and we had a blast with the dolphins. Our dolphin trainer (Vince or Vance) was hysterical. He asked us where we were from, and nicknamed us "Thelma and Louise." Every time it was our turn to do a trick with the dolphins, that's what he called us. We took a lot of pictures, Renea bought some of the pictures they took of us, and I bought the video. They put an intro about the Bahamas and Dolphin Encounter at the beginning, and then your swim session - it's well worth the $48 for the video. As soon as we got back to the ferry terminal, we had just enough time to grab a sandwich (try the Jamaica meat pastries, they were spicy and yummy) and prepare for our next adventure, the Flying Cloud. It's a 57-foot catamaran, a complimentary soft drink and rum punch are included. Captain Craig looks like Harry Belafonte and his crew and bartender were all fantastic. Merlene, the bartender, even let me use her cell phone to call my boyfriend, just so I could tell him, "I just saw the best snorkeling of my life, I've got a rum punch in my hand, sittin' on a 57-foot catamaran, in the middle of paradise, life is good!" Merlene also pointed out the island they used in the opening credits of "Gilligan's Island." I said, "I bet you say that to all the tourists." She insisted that was really it, and I was convinced, since it looked exactly like it. There were about 15 other people along with us. We dropped some folks off at Rose Island, who just wanted to lay on the beach, then they took us to Victoria Reef. As nice as Deadman's Reef was (and other places I've snorkeled), this was, hands down, the BEST snorkeling I have seen anywhere. The water was so clear, it felt like being in an aquarium at Sea World. The coral and vegetation were the same as Deadman's Reef, but we saw a lot more different types of fish, especially parrot fish and other more colorful varieties. The bottom was only about 15 feet down, and the it was clean, white sand. I kept looking for stingrays, but didn't see any. Renea saw a sea snake. I was glad I saved most of the film on the Fuji underwater camera for this place, because after developing 3 rolls of film, the Fuji definitely took the best pictures. The colors stayed "true," not a lot of added green and blue hues that the Kodak cameras added. The crew was tossing bread off the boat, so we were surrounded by fish. On the way back, after we picked up the Rose Island people, the captain and crew went diving for conch and got 3 or 4, I believe. The captain dissected one for us and explained all the various parts. He ate the intestine, raw, and told us it was "Bahamian Viagra." LOL One of the crew members, Elliott, offered to meet up with us later and he'd give us a personal tour of the island. We got back to the ship area around 6 PM, and all the stores were closed. This was disappointing, since we had planned on going to the jewelry store with the gem stones and Del Sol, the place that sells the stuff that changes color in the sun. We went through the Straw Market and got some deals on wood carvings and Renea bought some jewelry. I was interested in earrings, but no one had any! All the jewelry I saw were necklaces and bracelets. And even all of that looked like it was from Mexico, I get plenty of that in Texas. Nothing screamed "Bahamas" to me, except for the wood carving of a lady in an art deco evening gown (made of black and white sand) that I bought for $23.00. I really like it and she's very happy on my living room end table. I found an embroidered t-shirt I liked, but was out of cash and the rest of my traveler's checks were in the cabin. I did have my credit card, but their phone line was down and they couldn't call it in to verify it. Oh well, back onboard - this was the night we had the buffet dinner and watched the sunset from the deck. A bunch of us met up with Elliott and went to an internet cafe, can't remember the name of it, but it was right next to Atlantis, in a strip mall. They charge a $3 activation fee and 20 cents/minute, it's a high-speed connection, even faster than the DSL I have at work. Time for freebie #3 - we went to Atlantis and Elliott chatted up the "bouncer" guys at the Dig entrance. I think he promised them a free snorkeling trip. Whatever he said got us into the Dig for free! We walked all around the pool area and the casino. Quite a spectacular place, albeit very "Vegas." After Atlantis, we tried to go to that bar called "The Zoo," but it was closed, so we just grabbed some beers and went to Cable Beach and then we headed back to the ship. DAY AT SEA It was nice to sleep late today. We got up to the Lido Deck around noon and there were plenty of chairs available. We had a great spot, directly in front of the Lido stage, where we could see the ice carving and the Survivor contest. The burgers were good, and besides a short wait for the pizza sometimes, this was the only food line I ever encountered. Everyone was waiting for burgers, but we had a good time, making "cheeseboogie" and Pepsi jokes, from Saturday Night Live. I had intended to hang onto my pink souvenir cup, and gave it to the waitress, expecting her to just refill it. She came back with a yellow one (I already have 2 of those at home). I asked for a pink one the next time, and she came back with one of those plastic brandy snifter glasses, and said the pink cups were gone. After a few drinks of the day and a couple more hours of sun, we went shopping. I got a pencil with fish and coral on it for my collection at work. I wanted to get another Christian Dior perfume sampler box, but the one they had contained the same ones I already have, and Fahrenheit for men. While we were shopping, they were doing the Austin Powers Swingin' 60's dance lesson in the Universe Lounge. That was entertaining to watch, especially the boy who was around 12 years old, I guess. He was trying, at least. Heh. We signed up for the trivia game, which was more like "Name that Tune," but didn't get picked. The questions were soooo easy, I would have kicked their butts! LOL One of the contestants proposed to his girlfriend on stage...she said yes....aaawwwww...made me get all verklempt (sp?). MISCELLANEOUS:| Our cabin steward was great! We always had a full ice bucket (without asking). We didn't get a towel animal the first night, but after that, we had a bunny, a swan, and a lobster. Renea had some problems with her Sail and Sign account (she had crossed out the automatic tip on some of her bar purchases and added a bigger tip - both tips showed up on her statement). And another passenger we met had several problems with his account also - they kept saying it had been inactivated when he tried to use it - then they'd tell him it was fine - then it would happen it again. The photo gallery gets very congested with people, all pushing and shoving. I suggested on my comment card that they move it to the Forum, or some other larger area. DEBARKATION Piece of cake! We were out of our cabin at about 8:15 AM, went up to the Lido deck for breakfast. A few minutes after we finished eating, our color was called. There's a new law in effect now - you don't have to fill out a declaration form at all unless you bought over $600.00 worth of stuff. We only needed our id's and birth certificates in hand, and no one even looked at them. We found our luggage and got on the Mears bus back to Orlando. Our flight home wasn't until 3:15, so we had plenty of time. In fact, after waiting about 20 minutes to check our luggage, we were told we were too early, and to come back in an hour. The Orlando airport is very nice, we went to the Pub and had $9.00 Bloody Marys (beware, the drink prices are not on the menu). The appetizers and sandwiches were very good. Good to be home, but would have loved more time around Nassau to island-hop. Obviously, we had a wonderful trip. I would love to go back there and stay a week, without cruising. However, I'm still interested in the 7-day cruise that Royal Caribbean has from Galveston - I wouldn't have to fly anywhere for that. And can someone please tell me what I need to do to keep my computer and desk from moving? I feel like I live in a tilt-house, which is surprising, since I hardly noticed the ship moving. What is this "condition" called, anyway? I had it bad after my last cruise, which had rougher seas that this one. Would taking Dramamine help me now? LiviaMay 2002 Read Less
This was our first cruise and despite some tough weather I came home very relaxed and happy with our vacation... 3/17... We were flying in from Manchester, New Hampshire and decided to give ourselves an extra day in case bad weather ... Read More
This was our first cruise and despite some tough weather I came home very relaxed and happy with our vacation... 3/17... We were flying in from Manchester, New Hampshire and decided to give ourselves an extra day in case bad weather delayed everything. (It has been a very snowy winter) This worked very well for us. We stayed at the Comfort Inn at Cocoa Beach and had a day to ourselves to just relax before starting the cruise. 3/18 We arrived at Port Canaveral about 11:30 am and were told that we could do an early boarding. My husband had a passport and I had my birth certificate. We had checked with our TA and showed her the certificate to make sure that it would be sufficient. She told us it was OK. However when we did the paper work for boarding the woman who was helping us told me it was not a certified copy because there was no raised seal (I think that at one point there was but because I have carried it around for the last 6 years the seal was barely extinguishable). I had to sign a release accepting responsibility for not providing proper documentation and was allowed to board the ship. It could have been worse and I WILL be getting a passport ASAP! I never had a problem after that with boarding and or leaving the ship at any of the ports. After that snafu the rest of the boarding went without a hitch. We got to our room. We were on the Riviera deck in an outside cabin with a window (6A). At first I was concerned that being on the lowest deck for passengers was not a good thing but by the end of the first day I actually enjoyed it because it was not busy in the hallways and was quiet at night. (A good thing for sleeping):-) The room was clean and spacious. The medicine cabinet in the bathroom was big enough for all our toiletries. We unpacked and had more than enough room for our stuff. DON'T OVER PACK! That first night the ocean was very rough and it was windy and rainy but we hunkered down inside and found a corner in the Majestic Bar for drinks. Despite the rough seas neither my husband nor myself had any queasiness. A TIP FOR FIRST TIMERS: Book any tours you want as soon as you get on board. We waited until after the orientation talk the first evening and did not get the tour we wanted. It was a disappointment but now I will know for the next time. 3/19 FREEPORT This port is a good one to do a tour in. The shopping is better in Nassau. It might also be worthwhile to rent mopeds so you can head out on your own. On 4-night cruises, the 2nd night is formal night. Dinners were excellent in the dining room and I really enjoyed getting dressed up for dinner. Our dinner companions were great and we enjoyed their company. One of the couples never came to dinner, and the only reason we knew there were others at our table was we saw them one morning at breakfast. Breakfast in the dining room was in my opinion not as good as the morning breakfast buffet in Windows on the Sea. We would get ours and go out to the deck and eat out there. It was wonderful. 3/20 I enjoyed Nassau, as did my husband. The shopping was good (the shopping on the ship was good too) and you need to go to the Straw market even if you don't buy anything (which is a very hard thing to do). There is so much color and life and just watching the folks is worth it In Nassau, there is a great little restaurant called the Bahamian Kitchen. It had wonderful conch fritters and I recommend it for lunch. Also in Nassau if you have a chance, climb to the top of the water tower. The view will knock your socks off. The weather for all days was hit and miss. I did come home with some nice color because of the walking tour in Nassau. We did have rain and wind often. There are things going on all day on the day at sea. You can join in as much as you would like or just hang and watch. A couple of things that I would offer to first timers is find a spot that will become your spot, to have a drink with your honey or just sit and talk. The pace on the ship can become very hectic and this helps to keep you from burning out. Also book your tours early so you won't be disappointed. Take some time to figure out the layout of the ship. It will save some wear and tear on your feet. Enjoy..enjoy...have fun... batch@top.monad.netMarch 2001 Read Less
Hey all you cruise people! I can't believe it's been almost two months since our very first cruise. We sailed September 15th on Carnival's Fantasy. The cruise couldn't have went better! So here goes my wonderful ... Read More
Hey all you cruise people! I can't believe it's been almost two months since our very first cruise. We sailed September 15th on Carnival's Fantasy. The cruise couldn't have went better! So here goes my wonderful review. So sit back and enjoy! SEPTEMBER 15TH My mother and I got up at around 4:00 to get to the airport by six which by the way is about an hours drive from our home. We had booked the cruise through AAA (I mean after all I am a member and we got a discount) and we had decided that we wouldn't fly with Carnival. So as far as airfare goes we were on our own. We chose to fly US Airways (very nice company). Amazingly, the flights were on time just a little bumpy. Once we arrived in Orlando (thank heavens the people we were with had traveled to this airport before so we didn't get lost) we made our way down to the baggage claim and that's where we met our Carnival representative. We then collected our luggage and went up to the Mears transportation "depot" (we had also purchased our bus vouchers ahead of time, very nice as well). We had to wait about ten to fifteen minutes for a bus to arrive. The trip from the airport to the port was terrible to say the least (I mean after traveling almost all day you just want to get there especially if it is your first time cruising). Coming over the hill was awesome. In port that day (which was very busy) was the Fantasy, Royal Caribbean's "Sovereign of the Seas" (it's a beautiful ship) and the Disney Wonder. Once arriving there we were forced to sit on the bus for a good twenty to twenty five minutes because the buses in front of us didn't have their Carnival tags on their luggage. Once we got off the bus we made our way into the beautiful building. First we went through security (what a breeze) and then made our way upstairs. Since we had all of our paperwork prior to the day the check in process went smoothly. After we were all checked in (there were four of us all together) we made our way towards the ship only this time we had to activate our sail and sign cards. We then headed towards the ship where we got our picture taken. As soon as we got on board my mother and I had decided against using a credit cards so we had to stand in another line at the purser's desk to put money on the card (if you have a credit card use it. We felt every five minutes we were running down to the purser's desk to put money on our card). After that we were all starving from the long trip so we headed up to the Lido deck to Windows on the Sea. The food in this restaurant was all right. We then wanted to see our room so we headed down to the Rivera deck. My mother and I had a ocean view stateroom as did our fellow travel companions. Our rooms were huge (I honestly thought they were going to be small). The bathroom to was a nice size. Before I forget on the way to the port the bus driver had mentioned to us that the ship had only pulled into port at 7 am that morning so I was a little nervous the ship would be in poor shape (I'm a neat and clean freak). I couldn't have been more wrong. And for as old as the ship may be it seemed fine to us. Anyway after inspecting our room we made our way back up to the Lido deck and purchased our first Bahama Mamas and it was our last. I wasn't feeling well at this point, I was tired from traveling and the humidity was terrible. After getting our drinks we walked around the ship and had made our way to the front of the vessel and at this moment they had called a safety drill. I got sick at that point and didn't participate (huge mistake because we missed us pulling out). After the safety drill we just kind of chilled out for awhile. We had early seating dinner so we had to be dressed and ready by six pm. So after lying around for about an hour we got ready. We ate in the Celebration dining room and we had one of the best tables. We had a huge table at one of the windows so each night we got to watch the sunset and watch us sail. The first night the food was delicious. Oh our waiter was Ronald, he was from the Philippines and our team waiter was Florin he was from Romania (and he was adorably cute, needless to say during the next few days I developed a minor crush on him). After dinner we sort of just mosey around on the ship getting familiar with it and then we went to bed where we found they had the cute towel animals. I have to say by the first night we felt right at home. Also it didn't take long for our luggage to arrive at our room. All four of us had our luggage by dinner time. I received mine right before pulling out of port. Freeport, the Bahamas We had gotten up early that morning and as were getting up were pulling into the Lucayan Harbour. It was a beautiful Harbour. We rushed up our dining room for a quick breakfast and then departed the ship. Now I wasn't particularly fond of Freeport and I don't think our traveling companions were either. I know my mom wasn't. First of all we went on a "Jitney" ride and I felt as though I was going to die. And second of all the driver took us to the wrong shopping place. We were supposed to go to the International Bazaar, well at least we got to see it we passed right by it. We ended up in this little shopping mall. I however did find a cute ring (originally it was $45 but she knocked ten dollars off of it). We then went into a cyber cafe where I purchased a few minutes and emailed our friends and family back home to let them know we were all right. After spending the afternoon there we headed back to the ship. I found Freeport to be quite boring actually. We went straight to our rooms and took naps. I however stayed up and saw us pulling out of port. Shortly after we began getting ready for the Captain's cocktail party. It was my first cocktail party and it was wonderful. Then we went to dinner. The previous night our waiter had asked us if we were celebrating anything and of course my mom said that we were celebrating my graduation from high school. So then this evening they sang happy graduation...I was terribly embarrassed because I have a tendency to get overly shy (and of course Florin was present so that made it worse). After dinner we caught a Las Vegas show in the lounge. Being a singer I found it to be quite entertaining. My mom was a little offended by the "nudity". I however I didn't find a problem with it because it's all about Vegas and entertaining. After the show we decided to retire to bed. I mean Nassau was the next day and we were really excited for that. Nassau, the Bahamas I woke up before everyone else this morning and saw us pulling into port. It was amazing. The first thing I noticed was Royal Caribbean's "Sovereign of the Seas." After that we got dressed and rushed to get breakfast. We then went up on deck to get some pictures. Atlantis (what an amazing hotel) was in plain sight. We had opted to take the glass bottom boat tour. I don't recommend taking this. First of all it was extremely boring all you do is sail out to the middle of nowhere on a smelly old rocking boat (we got nauseated down below while looking through the glass, the smell of the fuel was leaking into the room) and you just kind of "hover" for a short time. It was boring and we didn't get to do any shopping although the "bartender" Alex was very cute. Once we came back to that we ate some lunch at the good ol Subway and then walked up and down Bay Street and then we hailed a cab to the rum cake factory. They have the greatest rum cakes there. The cab driver was a sweet person and didn't whip us around like they did in Freeport (I partly think this was because it was his first day back from surgery or so he told us). After that we headed back to the pier where we went through very tight security and I mean very tight. Although the gentleman who checked my i.d. was very nice and even called me by name. We headed back to the ship and rested and then went to dinner. After dinner I hurried back to the room where I ran into our very nice room steward (I didn't catch his name). I changed and headed up to the cafe to purchase some internet time. It was really cool to be sitting there, speaking with friends while the ocean is going by. At this time I was by myself so I then headed to the Universal Lounge to find my mom and her friends. They were watching a comic show. We got all three and they were very funny. Our cruise director Mershall was very hilarious and extremely entertaining he made the cruise all the more fun. After that we decided to head up to the Lido deck to check out the party. Shortly after arriving it started to rain so everyone rushed inside and ten minutes later it stopped. After going inside we decided to hit the sheets. Fun Day At Sea This day was probably the best. We laughed so hard this day everyone was looking at us like we were nuts. I thought cruises meant laughing and having a good time. Maybe I'm wrong. My mom and her friends decided to go to the casino while I opted for the internet again (what can I say I'm an internet junkie even when I'm on vacation). Our final dinner was terribly sad. After dinner we caught another Vegas style show. While my mother and friends retired to the room I walked around on the ship just to make memories of everything. I then headed back to the room so I could put my luggage out. Debarkation This couldn't have went any smoother. We were the second group off the ship. The only thing that was horrible was after coming off the ship you enter this warehouse looking place to get your luggage and ours was all spread out. My mother's one piece was on different sides of the room. We caught our transportation bus and headed to the airport. Now for the negatives (you knew they were coming) the smoking, every time we would step off the elevator people would be smoking and every time we would step out of the lounge people would be smoking. Due to the fact this was a four day cruise we were rushed for everything we really didn't have time to lay out or anything. Also (I know this couldn't be helped) but the people we dined with hygiene wise was terrible. I had to force my food down every night because they smelled of cigarette smoke and (not to gross anyone out) but the one night the one lady was eating I believe pasta for dinner and her hair kept falling into her food. It wasn't the most appetizing experience that night. And they complained about everything on the menu. Other than that it was great. Considering we had such a great time after arriving home we whipped out the Carnival book and began planning our second one. We have chosen the smoke free Paradise 7-day Western Caribbean cruise. We are going to do things differently this time. We are going to arrive a day early in Miami just for safety sake. If you have any questions please feel free to email me or instant message me at Jazzybluefairy/email Jazzybluefairy@aol.com. Jazzybluefairy@aol.com February 2003 Read Less
Just got back, Fantasy Oct 27th, 2002, a 4 day sailing to the Bahamas. Wow. Had an excellent vacation once again, and unfortunately it was too short to my liking - but hey, a short cruise is better than none! :) I called in to Carnival ... Read More
Just got back, Fantasy Oct 27th, 2002, a 4 day sailing to the Bahamas. Wow. Had an excellent vacation once again, and unfortunately it was too short to my liking - but hey, a short cruise is better than none! :) I called in to Carnival on Friday night before the Sunday sailing, and found out the price had gone down... way down. Through a 3-way call with my travel agent, I asked for a shipboard credit, but the Carnival rep told me that anyone that could give a credit. Went home by 5:30 pm EST, and no one could do it over the weekend, as it was too close to sailing. :( Wish I had known that before! So they offered me an upgrade from a 4A guarantee (inside), to a specific cabin at level 6D (ocean view!), or a 6C (ocean view) guarantee. I asked for the 6C guarantee just in case we might get even more of an upgrade. ;) We had met our friend Mitch online through this same board at Cruise Critic, and picked him up at the airport on Sunday morning. We had some time to kill, so we drove down and looked at the ship, then ate some breakfast while we got to know each other. When we went back to check in, the porters didn't know what cabin my friend Susan and I had - it was still on the manifest as a guaranteed cabin. It was a bit inconvenient to have to go through the security check, go upstairs and find out the cabin, then go back outside to put the tags on the luggage... but it was worth it to write "V3" on the tags!!! Wow, an upgrade to a Veranda suite was really unexpected and totally awesome. This was my third cruise, and my birthday celebration, so it was a very nice treat from the 'upgrade gods.' :D Susan was shocked to have an ocean view suite with a balcony for her first cruise, and says she'll be spoiled from now on. Since we were platonic friends, it was a bit disconcerting at first to realize there was only one bed that we would have to share, but it was plenty big enough for the both of us without being uncomfortable. Our other choice would have been to downgrade, but we thought we'd rather have the balcony and share a bed. Sure, it was great, but as far as I'm concerned, I'd still take an inside cabin rather than none at all. ;) Still, it was very nice watching the sunsets and the stars in my nightgown. Our first stop was Freeport, which had its good and bad points. When we first got off the ship, we didn't realize the 'Straw Market' was right across the street. There were local people in Kalik festival costumes waiting for us to take our picture with, and many taxi drivers crowding the area encouraging us to come with them for shopping. They told us that the International Bazaar was about 5 miles away, and cost $4.00 per person to go to, and that Port Lucaya, a market across from the ocean, was 11 miles away and cost $5.00 per person. Many of us, not seeing the 'straw market,' were herded into the vans. We chose Port Lucaya, which was beautiful, and had pretty good shopping; but we saw the 'Straw Market' right there by the ship as we rode back! :rolleyes: Next time we'll save $10 and bypass the taxi drivers and walk across the street to shop. That same night there was a great Carnival show which featured singing and dancing from various styles of music throughout the 20th century or so. The group was very talented, and it was quite easy to forget that we were on a ship and not in Las Vegas watching a production number. The next day was Nassau, and the shopping was much closer, as the actual town was right at the pier. Everyone who was licensed to braid hair wore the same colored shirts, and worked out of a stall right near the pier. As before, the taxi drivers did not hesitate to come right up to us to try to get us to go somewhere. We were offered a 20 minute ride on a horse and carriage for $20, when according to the guidebook I read later, should have cost $10 - we didn't go in either case. The horses have a mandatory rest period from 1 pm until 3 pm, so if you want to ride, plan your afternoon accordingly. Walking around the town was tiring, and there were few benches to sit at and rest. Also, the exchange rate in the Bahamas is pretty much equal to the US dollar, so there weren't many great bargains to be found. I was glad I'd bought most of my souvenirs in Freeport, though, as most of the things in Nassau were of the more commercial variety. This was the better of the two stops in the Bahamas as far as duty free shopping goes. After going back to the ship for a late lunch and a rest period of our own, we took a taxi over to Paradise Island to see the Atlantis hotel and casino. Susan was tired out from walking all day, and decided to stay onboard and recuperate, but I didn't want to miss seeing something I'd seen on the Travel Channel several times.. The price is better if you can find someone to share the cab ride with; it is $4 per person if there are 4 or more people to ride. Also if there are less than around 8 people (in a van), the taxi driver will want someone in the cab to pay the $1 toll for the bridge. Our taxi driver tried to say he did not have change for one of the riders, but the rider stood his ground and waited until the driver made change with the others drivers there. The Atlantis is beautiful and well worth visiting. The hotel has very beautiful paintings and artwork. When Mitch and I got there at around 8:45, there was a guard at the entrance of "The Dig," who told us that it was only open at that time for hotel guests. He told us if we would give him some 'incentive' he would consider letting us in. We figured $20 was incentive enough for the two of us, which was a little less than half the price regularly charged. It was well worth that investment, although we did miss out on the actual tour and explanation of what the various exhibits were. The fish were wonderful and beautiful, and we felt the star of the attraction was the giant manta ray which seemed to fly through the water like an eagle soars through the air. Even though the ship was in port at Nassau for 24 hours, it was a Tuesday night and not much was happening on the island. Of course, it still seemed like a weekend, so we didn't want to go straight to sleep. Fortunately for us, there was a party going on right on the Lido deck and we could stay up late into the night. Thursday was our day at sea, and we made the most of it. We lounged in the cabin, watched "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" and had room service for breakfast. We sat in the hot tub for a while. Ate some lunch, then watched the hairy chest contest. Later I enjoyed a scavenger hunt, learned a bit of choreography in the dance class, and watched a very hilarious game show starring our cruise director, comedian, and fellow cruisers. Right after that, Susan was a participant in the passenger talent show; we were fortunate to have had a very gifted bunch of folks to entertain us. I guess that all of her nights of practicing in the karaoke lounge were worth the investment. Of course, that's one of her hobbies, so what should I have expected? Thursday night was a bit of a downer, as it was the last night, but we enjoyed one last fine meal and exchanged emails with our new friends from the dinner table. After dinner it was one last trip to the hot tub for me, and karaoke for Susan; then hurried back to the room to pack and put the suitcases out. After that we watched another great Carnival show; this one had scenes from various Broadway musicals. The singers and dancers again impressed us with their craft. It was amazing that they could change costumes so quickly between each scene, and had such a wide range of vocal abilities. Late night we were back up on the Lido deck for one last slice of pizza and a game of Scrabble, and then to the room - it was about 2 am. I sat out on the balcony and looked at the stars one last time, then fell exhausted into bed. Up and going around 8 am, and pretty much everyone else from Verandah deck had already rushed off the ship. We were trying to make the cruise last, and ate a leisurely breakfast on the Lido deck with Mitch. Since they had already called our color, and he had only carry on luggage, we left when we were ready. We got the most out of our cruise, and enjoyed it thoroughly. Of course, Susan is already planning her next one... look for her to join the "Openly Addicted to Cruising" support group very soon! germanbini@hotmail.com February 2003 Read Less
We have just returned from a 4-day cruise to Freeport and Nassau on the Fantasy. This trip was our honeymoon as well as our first cruise. Before I get to the negative, I do want to say that we had a wonderful time. This may have ... Read More
We have just returned from a 4-day cruise to Freeport and Nassau on the Fantasy. This trip was our honeymoon as well as our first cruise. Before I get to the negative, I do want to say that we had a wonderful time. This may have been contributed to the fact that it was our honeymoon or, since this was our first cruise, we may not have known any better. First the positives....there were many. The service, the experience, the food. We really enjoyed ourselves. When we got to Port Canaveral the lines were long, but moving very fast. Since we had a Cat 12 suite we were able to go through the Skipper's Club and that really moved us on through the process. Although, even if we had stayed in the regular line I think we would've moved fast. The food was wonderful, for the most part. I ate and ate and ate........ ...the selection was very nice. We ate at the alternative dining areas most of the time. I was not real impressed with the formal dining that we had been assigned. The company at the table was good but I was 'underwhelmed' with the service and food there. The Lido deck had much better food. We only went to the formal dining room twice, anyway, since we were usually ashore or doing something else. The ship itself was very impressive. I have to say that she is showing her age, but I think that she is aging gracefully. We had a suite and, for the most part, it was wonderful. They really good movies that you could view and even had some local stations (1 from my hometown). It was made even nicer when we found that our travel agent sent us a fruit basket. OK, now for the negatives, the beds..... the room had two twins, the steward pushed them together to make a queen. That would've been fine IF they hadn't kept coming apart. Next, the bathroom....although clean, you could see rust around the countertop and the light cover above the water basin was either very dusty or very old (I didn't touch it to find out which) other than that it was nice. The ports were great. We chose note to go on any of the cruise sponsored excursions (way too expensive) but for $25 each, we got a 3 hour tour of Nassau from a tour guide waiting out side the port. I would suggest this to anyone, just make sure they have a taxi license. The legit ones will show it to you without asking. Over all we had a very nice trip and I hated to leave when the boat docked. Did we have a nice time? Yes we did, although there was a gentleman upset because he felt that 'after 6 crusies this was the worst that he'd ever been on' . He shared his complaints with us..........we just didn't see what the problem was with most of them....once again maybe we just don't know better. Debarkation was nice, quick, and painless. We have already decided to do it again next year, maybe with friends. I do think will go an another ship though. I'd like to see what another 'Fun Ship' has to offer. JRSLAY@aol.comMarch 2002 Read Less
Four things sold us on the Carnival cruise: Cabin size (larger), Price (same cabin @ Royal had bunk beds), Company sales rep. (Danny @ Carnival was very helpful while the girl at Royal just wanted you off her phone) and reading passenger ... Read More
Four things sold us on the Carnival cruise: Cabin size (larger), Price (same cabin @ Royal had bunk beds), Company sales rep. (Danny @ Carnival was very helpful while the girl at Royal just wanted you off her phone) and reading passenger reviews like this. Here is our review: Departure 7/29/02. Positives The food was very good and kitchen service was very good. Cabin service is good. There were lots of on-board activities. Entertainment was good, especially the shows. The ship staff was all very friendly and helpful. Cruise Director Stanton was good. Ship was clean and almost smoke free. Negatives Drink prices are high ($4/beer) because of the automatic gratuity fees. All on-board purchases require use of your room account card and each time you order anything with it, adds another 15%. They automatically charge a $42/pp gratuity fee on your account for the general staff, then request an additional, separate gratuity for the Head Waiter and his assistant. It even cost me a 6% tip to get chips at the casino. Ship is older and room decor shows it. On the Shopping - Don't buy anything in Freeport. The shopping is much better in Nassau. It is the same stuff, but a bigger selection and cheaper. Drinks - If you are a soft drink person or are taking kids, get the Unlimited Soda Cards. Best deal on board. Kids - They claimed we had 800 kids (anyone under 18). We did not take ours, but the kids @ Camp Carnival were having fun. Cruise quotes - We got the best quote on the cruise by booking directly thru Carnival. The Excursions were our only real complaint. Their descriptions are nicer than the actual excursion. Some people did better booking on their own, rather than paying a high mark up to Carnival. Example, the Atlantis Tour (a tour through a nice resort hotel with a large saltwater aquarium, is $42/pp thru Carnival, or you can take a cab for $4 and pay $25 at the hotel. We enjoyed the snorkeling at Freeport, but the advertised 2.0 hours includes 1 hour travel and boarding time. Also, a "beautiful catamaran" is a twin hull ferry, not a sailboat. Stingray City is okay for novice divers and kids, but experienced divers will be bored. We just heard complaints about the Pirates party at Freeport. People who did the Dolphin encounter enjoyed it. Read Less
All the luggage is packed and we are ready to go. The only thing left to do is check everything off my list. I make a list to ensure that I have everything. There is everyone else who is cruising with us in the driveway. I am so excited! ... Read More
All the luggage is packed and we are ready to go. The only thing left to do is check everything off my list. I make a list to ensure that I have everything. There is everyone else who is cruising with us in the driveway. I am so excited! I have never left my children for more than a night. My Sister-n-Law is staying with the kids. We have our passports and we are leaving. Now we are at the cruise port. The cruise ship is very beautiful with the white base and the red and blue design. The first thing you see is the fin sticking up in the air. The porters are at the side walk so we are going to deposit our luggage with one of them. We have our tags filled out on the luggage, but the Porter wants us to fill out another tag. The luggage is on it's way to the ship. Now we need to park and find out where we need to go. The Port Canaveral is very attractive. We are going to ride the escalator. Once at the top we needed to fill out more disembarkation paperwork. I am glad that I filled out the ones that came with our travel documents ahead of time. We are checked in and have our room cards and sail and sign cards, now we are going to have our pictures taken and enter the ship. You cannot imagine the view when you enter the fantasy atrium. It is beautiful. There is a huge clear elevator and hallways to other sections of the ship. We are going to find our rooms and then go to lunch. When I walked out on the Lido Deck the food smelled very good on the buffet. Everyone in our group is having something different. I don't want to eat much because we have the early seating at dinner. The hamburger was really good. When I walked to the other side of the Lido Deck I saw hot food on another buffet. And there is a salad bar, and dessert bar. We enjoyed exploring the ship, then we had the lifeboat drill, this doesn't take long. We put on our life jackets and went to the appointed spot on the ship. The Coast Guard is checking all of the boats in the area so we can leave. It has only been a couple of weeks since 9/11 and they are not taking any chances with our safety. There is a helicopter flying above us. This is really impressive, there is a gun boat patrolling the port. They have just pulled a boat over and boarded them. I am glad the Coast Guard is covering all of the area to ensure our safe departure. Finally we are exploring the ship. It is unbelievable, I don't know if I can explain adequately enough the experience. The ship is similar to a floating resort. There are shops with t-shirts and other clothing for sale and there is a jewelry shop and perfume shop. We have seen several bars where the partying takes place at night. I really like the fact that each bar has different music playing. There is a baby grand piano with a piano player in a lovely bar. The first evening has finally arrived and we are dressed for the evening meal. Our waiter is wonderful. He took care of our every desire while serving us. The food was very good. We all tried something different. I found out that I like Sea Bass. Now we are ready for the show. The show was very entertaining. Now we are ready to go to the casino to see if we are lucky or not. The next day at I awoke in the Bahamas. It was awesome to get a cup of coffee and walk on the deck and realize I was in a different country. The water is a lovely aqua. And there is a lighthouse not far from the ship. What a lovely setting. As I was walking around the deck I saw a sight in the distance that looked like a castle. This has to be Atlantis. We will have to go there and see what we think about Atlantis. After everyone in our group had breakfast we left for Atlantis. The boat ride over was interesting. Once we exited the ship, we hailed a cab for the short ride to Atlantis. Everyone on the ship was told to take your sail and sign card so we could board the ship when were ready. Atlantis was spectacular. The aquarium that lines the walls of the restaurant can not be full appreciated unless you were standing there looking eye to eye with the shark. That is the closest I want to ever come to a shark. There were lovely fish in the aquarium and a huge ray. I think seeing the aquarium was worth the trip regardless of the casino. The ride back to the ship was interesting. We walked to a boat and paid a fee to be carried back to the ship. The rest of the cruise was great fun!! Now I know why they call Carnival ships the fun ships. kkeen@tampabay.rr.comSeptember 2002 Read Less
We just came back from the 3 day/4 night cruise on the Carnival Fantasy out of Port Canaveral with stops at Freeport and Nassau- Trip date March 16-20th. Background: First cruise, traveling with 6 year old twins. The best way to sum ... Read More
We just came back from the 3 day/4 night cruise on the Carnival Fantasy out of Port Canaveral with stops at Freeport and Nassau- Trip date March 16-20th. Background: First cruise, traveling with 6 year old twins. The best way to sum up our cruise experience to others is "You either are a cruiser or you're not." Unfortunately we fall into the you're not category. The ship was old but clean, so it was not that. The service was ok, but not what I would define pampering by ANY stretch of the imagination. The food was excellent in the main dining room, but if you go for just buffets you spent a lot of money for nothing. Camp Carnival: Excellent. Kids loved it, great way to spend some R&R for the parents. Shows: good, made it worth the money. Freeport - eliminate this as a stop completely for cruising. I knew there was not much there to begin with from advice from my sister, but for those who didn't most were disappointed. If you go, just stick to the Straw Market which is just off the boat. (Note they do not advertise this much if at all on the boat.) Nassau - Beautiful, clean, very friendly people. Paradise beach, PUBLIC beach showing its lack of upkeep, but the water was beautiful. You can walk down to Atlantis nice, fancy. Note: Shops close way too early -- 6:00 pm and outside of a Senor Frogs which charges a $5 cover at night there is nothing to do unless you want to pay a cab fare back to the Paradise Island. Disembarking: HORRIBLE; wait 1.5 hrs for our color to be called. Bottom line: My husband and I were happy that we did the cruise, but for the money there are a lot of other trips we could have done and way more fun. If you like to eat, eat and eat, then this is for you. If you don't mind being herded at times, this is for you. If you want someone to always pick up your room and serve every meal this is for you. I love to eat out fancy, but not every day. And those traveling with kids (hey they only cost me like $400 for the 2 of them to go on) beware. Do they like to sit in fine dining for almost 2 hrs? Mine were great, but the alternative is not so good, going through the buffet line (and I mean line) can be a hassle. Ok. So for those who still want to go. First timers - do it as inexpensively as you can and do a short cruise, skip the room with the window (saved us $250) and give it a try. You are paying a boatload to be on a cruise, eat main dining and go to the shows or you just spent way tooooo much money. 2nd cruise or beyond, do a different ship, different itinerary. Watch out for the automatic gratuities they add to your bill ($40 pp or $160 in our case). We felt it was ridiculous, reduced it and then gave our room service and childcare money on the side. Biggest negative: Pools - they should be demolished and rebuilt. UGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Positives: Camp Carnival staff! Lobster tail, Chateaubriand! MSUKRAMERS@aol.com July 2003 Read Less
We just returned from the 4 night/3 day Bahamas cruise on Carnival's Fantasy. By reading the reviews on cruisecritic.com, I was able to find out a lot about the ship that I probably wouldn't have found out otherwise. We were ... Read More
We just returned from the 4 night/3 day Bahamas cruise on Carnival's Fantasy. By reading the reviews on cruisecritic.com, I was able to find out a lot about the ship that I probably wouldn't have found out otherwise. We were in a Category 12 cabin with a balcony. We were not told by Carnival or our travel agent that we could use the Skippers Club for priority check in. I knew from reading other cruise reviews that this was an option for us. We did check in through the Skippers Club and check in was a relatively painless process. Overall we enjoyed the cruise, however, we do have a few comments to make. Suite Overall the suite was great. We had our 13 year old son and his 18 year old half brother with us. The room steward brought in a rollaway bed which turned out to be fine but the pull out sofa was the worst thing I've seen in a long time. The mattress (if you want to call it that) was very very thin and the bed was very flimsy. The person assigned to that bed ended up sleeping on the sofa itself rather than pulling out the bed - it was too uncomfortable. The adults slept on twin beds which were very hard - however we got used to them. Food The food was disappointing - mediocre at best. We've been on other cruises so we had something to compare it to and the food was definitely not up to par. Although our waiter was nice, he really didn't seem to be into what he was doing. We really didn't get much chance to interact with him. We didn't do the ship excursions - I had read on cruisecritic.com that they were expensive and not good. We talked to some people who did the Blue Lagoon excursion. They told us that the water was very shallow - almost too shallow for snorkeling - and that they never saw any fish. In Nassau, we ran into a Bahamian Tour guide - very nice - he offered to take us on a 2 hour tour for $25 per person (the ship charged $45 per person for just about the same tour). We did the $25 tour and were very pleased. We saw parts of Nassau, heard a lot about it from the tour guide and also toured Atlantis (which we really enjoyed). We will probably not do a Carnival cruise again. Been there done that! sparks02@tampabay.rr.comApril 2002 Read Less
Let me start by saying that perhaps my expectations were too high. Unfortunately, very few were met. I was in a group of 9 couples that departed on September 23rd from Port Canaveral. We arrived at the dock at approximately 11:00 am. ... Read More
Let me start by saying that perhaps my expectations were too high. Unfortunately, very few were met. I was in a group of 9 couples that departed on September 23rd from Port Canaveral. We arrived at the dock at approximately 11:00 am. There was quite a long line for the initial check in, and it took some time since all but 2 clerks were out to lunch, but after we got through that we went to the skippers club (and yes, there is one in port Canaveral). From there we were the 2nd group (after a wedding party) to be allowed on the boat). Out of 9 couples, 8 of us had suites. We were escorted to them, and given a very quick but nice run down. I had suite U84. The room was very comfortable size wise, and was very clean, although in need of an update. We had a bottle of champagne and a chocolate tray waiting for us, courtesy of our travel agent. Nice start. After everyone found their rooms, we all started to congregate on the Lido deck. Everyone kind of scattered, which was fine. Luggage came in shifts. One of my bags came very late. The one with the beer. It was obvious that it had been opened and searched, but they left my beer. Works for me! I think there is a lot of other things more important right now. We had a very diverse group. Everything from a 25th wedding anniversary to a 29th birthday. Out of 18 people, none of us will sail Carnival again. Why? Where do I start.......... Very dirty. Even though I appreciate that this ship had just unloaded 2 thousand passengers to take on two thousand more, it was dirty. I'm not a prude, but old gum and wrappers should be picked up. The windows were horribly filthy. The only time any windows were cleaned was in Freeport, and then only the bottom 3 decks. I realize that, growing up in the midwest, I am used to the very best in corn fed beef, but UGH! The lobster was very undercooked, and the rolls would make excellent hockey pucks. Desserts? Obviously frozen food, and the "excellent pizza?", well, once again, perhaps I have been given too good of food for too long, but I'd rather suck cardboard. If you want excellent pizza, come to the Quad Cities. No comparison. Breakfast was "soup eggs", (otherwise known as scrambled), or lukewarm EVERYTHING else. The omelets were marginal, if you can swallow egg beaters. Our room steward, Maria, was very sweet, although obviously overworked. The waiters in the dining room were very good, with one glaring exception. The entire reason behind this cruise was one of the couples 25th wedding anniversary. This was not until the 3rd night of our cruise, so all were very aware of it. The big night comes and, voila! Everyone else gets their meals except them. Yes, they got their cake, just no main course. By the time it was realized, they had no desire to eat anything. Who could blame them? Even though I was with a very rowdy group, I felt sorry for the other passengers. None of us would have been surprised to be told to quiet down, but no one ever was. They should have been, and I offer my apologies to anyone else on that ship. Disembarkation was painless, we were the 2nd group called. After all is said and done, I have realized that this is not the cruise line for me. Although I can party with the best, it won't be on Carnival. For all you who have had great experiences, I am happy for you. And sorry for me.October 2001 Read Less
My husband and I purchased a cruise on the Carnival cruise line for our Anniversary. We picked the ship Fantasy because of the reasonable price and the 4-day itinerary to the Bahamas. This was our first cruise and I knew very little ... Read More
My husband and I purchased a cruise on the Carnival cruise line for our Anniversary. We picked the ship Fantasy because of the reasonable price and the 4-day itinerary to the Bahamas. This was our first cruise and I knew very little about the whole experience. We purchased 6B tickets, which guaranteed at least the Rivera deck with a window. Our travel agent had instructed us that we would have a much better chance of an upgrade. After purchasing the tickets I began extensive on-line searching about all the cruise information I could find. I found several things that helped enhance our experience. I was worried, as most of the cruise reports I read about the Carnival Fantasy were not very flattering. We could not have been more pleasantly surprised. We had a fantastic time and loved the Fantasy ship. Upon our arrival at Port Canaveral, we were really impressed with the size of the ship. A Royal Caribbean ship and a Disney ship were also in port. We arrived early (as a previous cruiser had instructed me) so we could eat lunch on board and check out the ship. We stopped first at the porter who helped unload our luggage and gave us our room number. We did receive an upgrade to the main floor. We paid the porter $1.00 per bag. We then parked our vehicle. It was $8.00 dollars a day that we paid $32.00 for upfront. We then entered the terminal. I had all our paperwork ready and within 30 minutes we were on board the ship. We went first to our room that was decorated with Happy Anniversary. I already knew the size of the room so I was not shocked. The sounds of the toilet though did make us laugh the whole cruise. It sounded as though it was going to suck you down the drain. HAHA We went to explore more next. A big buffet was going on in one of the topside restaurants and also a grill cooking burgers. There was also a 24-hour Pizzeria that provides pizza or calzone rings and Caesar salad. I already knew of this because of my Internet searches. The food was fresh and delicious. We then checked out the ship and were amazed at the size and the different bar, clubs, shops etc that it contained. We had received a late seating dinner assignment, though I had requested an early one. (A tip had told me the food was much fresher on the early seating). We were able to change our seating time pretty easily. We first had the life boat emergency drill. I know it is very important but it was really hot and the life jacket was burning everyone up. We went to the deck and watched the ship leave Port Canaveral. It left about an hour late. We had 8 people sitting at our table at meals. We meet another couple that we hung around with at different times during the cruise and also four ladies that were very nice. We all got along great. At dinner each night we all would relate our fun experiences during the day. I wish we would have all exchanged addresses. The dinners were very delicious. Some of the things we order had small portions but we only ordered more. We had steak and lobster and a lot of exotic dishes. They made us receive one dinner at a time but we could always have as much as we wanted. The food was fantastic. During the week the dinner staff sang and danced for us. It was a lot of fun. We went to a show the first night. It was very Vegas like. We enjoyed it. We have been to Las Vegas on a previous vacation. The show was not as good as the shows there but for a floating stage seemed like a big production. We went to the casino. I was disappointed in how small it was and that it did not have much variety. The next morning we were at Freeport, Bahamas. It was beautiful there. We caught a $5.00 each cab ride into town. We went parasailing for $40.00 each. We loved it. You get a fantastic view of the island. We also went snorkeling at $30.00 each. The reef was beautiful. The fish were so colorful. I was in awe. We did not purchase the snorkeling on the ship. I read a tip that said it was a pain to carry the equipment around all day. I saw others that looked like they were not enjoying it much. When we returned to shore it was 3 pm and the ship was leaving at 4 pm. We were all supposed to be back by 3:30 pm. We expected a $5.00 cab ride. The locals seeing that we were rushed for time really tried to take advantage of us. They said that we "were really going to have to pay now." They wanted $24.00 to drive both of us back. We were floored. Luckily for us a lady, that we later found out was the assistant cruise director of our ship, told them that she was very disappointed in them at trying to take advantage of the guest from the ships. Also that the ship promoted them and in the future she would make sure the guest were aware of them trying to take advantage. We walked to a main road and another cab stopped and gave us all a ride to the ship for the $5.00 rate. I do have to say that I will remember that ride for the rest of my life...haha... especially because it was on the wrong side of the road and at what seemed like 100 mph as our driver gave "Hand" signals to other drivers as he passed them. I wanted to kiss the ground when we arrived at the ship but I was so happy to be on time we just went aboard. We went to dinner and then went dancing a little. The next morning we were at Nassau, Bahamas. This place was beautiful. We planned a day of sightseeing. We went to the Straw market and bartered like hell for our souvenirs. We got some great bargains. We took a ferry ride over to the Atlantis resort. It was $6.00 each for both ways. The resort was great. They have a great glass wall that has a huge aquarium inside the building. We got picture of stingrays, barracudas and hammerhead sharks. We watch cigars getting hand rolled in one of the shops. We also managed to leave them some money in the casino. We road the ferry back. We shopped in the stores there. Bought some Rum. Went to the Hard Rock Cafe and in general walked around and really enjoyed the day. We went back to the ship around 4:30 pm. They ship was in port until the next morning but we stayed on the ship. We enjoyed a game show. Got tricked into participating in a very fun scavenger hunt. We again went out dancing and had a very fun time. The next day was the at sea day. We had breakfast and then we spent the day lying in the sun drinking drinks with little umbrellas. We did go to a meeting that explained to us what to expect to occur as we processed off the ship. This meet was very informative and made our embankment very stress free. We just relaxed and had a good day. We went to another Vegas style show that night then went to our room and packed and set our luggage outside the door. (We did remember to leave out clothes for the next day though). We watched a movie on the TV and relaxed. The next morning we went to our area to wait to be called to leave the ship. That went fairly fast and easy. We all in all had a wonderful time. The ship was a little older but very clean. We never saw our room steward but our bed was turned down each night while we were at dinner and cute little animal made out of towels greeted us. We really dressed up each night but most people dressed really casual some even in shorts. This did not bother us at all. Everyone did their own thing and it worked out great. I have to say that our Head Waiter went out of his way to really give us good service. The employees on this ship worked hard the whole time we were aboard. They took pictures of us a lot and we did purchase quite a few. They were really professionally done. I don't know about anyone else on this ship but we had great fun, good food, great table companions, and fantastic service. The show and games were a lot of fun. Here is a tip that my husband found out the hard way.... don't put your liquor in the suitcase. They tend to really make your clothes wet and your suitcase smell very bad. Haha Just hand carry it off the ship. The porter apparently does NOT treat your luggage as nice on the way off. The tips for the week totaled $78.00. We thought that was very reasonable. We have memories of a lifetime. Dncngfl@aol.com May 2002 Read Less
Carnival Fantasy Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.1
Dining 3.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 5.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 5.0 4.2

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