I originally booked the cruse as a present for my 19 year old son. He wanted to do an intro to scuba class and , as we loved Cozumel, we booked a cruise to that destination. i had been on one Carnival Cruise years ago and was not overly impressed. I had also been on Royal Caribbean (and Windjammer and Big Red Boat--now defunct lines) and preferred RC. This cruise fit out schedule and was very well priced so we decided to try it. When my son could not go we decided to go anyway for our 25th anniversary.
First--the bus ride to the ship. we purchased this from Carnival. It was pleasant but required a wait. After looking at taxi rates I think I would skip this next time
Embarkation was a long line--much more than I remembered on any other cruise. I accidentally left my carry all at the check-in desk and they at first told me I was going to have to go through the long line all over again to retrieve it. A nice carnival employee (supervisor I think) overheard the conversation and directed me backwards to the desk and I retrieved my carry-on. Thank you whoever saved me the 1/2-3/4 hour wait in line again.
Getting on the ship was easy and our luggage showed up right on time.
Food at the buffet style lido deck was surprisingly good. The deli and salad bar were wonderful. We ate here several times during the cruise and found the food to be much above average for a buffet. The only thing that needs improvement is their orange juice--a mix between frozen concentrate and tang. Most of he time we ate in the dining room. I ordered mostly seafood and it was all well prepared. My husband was also impressed. My only comment--if you want more than one item --order it at the beginning because it is much easier. Our waiter was Andrew who was very kind, personable and efficient (and his assistant Jose was also). He actually remembered our names which was thoughtful. Again, I expected only fair quality food and was very impressed.
Our room was large compared to other ships we have been on. It had a king bed and a large bathroom with tiled shower. There was a large window in the room . Our porter introduced himself and was very personable and efficient (Wayan)
The ship is am older ship but has been kept up. We gambled a little and went to the shows--we really enjoyed the comedy club and went to almost every show,. The cruse director was very talented and had wonderful violin and fiddling skills!!
The pool was typical cruise type pool. we went to the hot tub at the adults only deck (serenity)
We did one tour--the behind the scenes tour. I would recommend it if you are at all interested in the nuts and bolts of cruising. The galley was SPOTLESS. The employees who did the tout were all personable.
We had been to Cozumel several times and to Grand Cayman once before. So we did our own thing at the ports. we snorkeled at Eden Rock in Cayman and went to Chankanaab in Cozumel. I had not been to Cozumel since the last big hurricane and was sorry to see how much of the reef had been destroyed.
Getting off the ship was super easy. we toted our own suitcases and breezed though customs and then took the bus back to Tampa airport
I would recommend this cruise to anyone who would like a relaxing mid-length cruise to interesting ports.
I have vacationed in Cozumel before. It is a snorkel and scuba paradise. There are several nice beach bars for those not into that--Money Bar and Paradise Beach are two. Everyone is friendly in Cozumel. It still remains a poor island, I had hoped to see some improvement after all the inflow of vacationers from cruise ships.