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I have been on four cruises; one Norwegian, one Royal Caribbean, Carnival Freedom and now Carnival Splendor. I have also had the opportunity with my family to experience an inside cabin, ocean view stateroom, and balcony staterooms. I went on the Carnival Freedom January of 2012 on a six night cruise to grand Cayman and Jamaica. I only mention this because what I discovered on my first few moments on Carnival Splendor is that Carnival Freedom and Splendor are carbon copies of each other. The only strong discernible difference was instead of fish & chips on deck 10 of Freedom, Splendor offered a Rotisserie stand instead at the same exact location. So my first impressions of Carnival Splendor after boarding were "this is nice, very pink, very "classic" decor. This particular cruise was of a 5 night round trip out of Manhattan New York cruise to St john's New Brunswick Canada, and Halifax Nova Scotia Canada. I traveled with my girlfriend of six years, this was to be our first time cruising without family and traveling abroad without family. We were super excited to meet up with some fellow cruisers who although we had never met before we had connected through the smartphone app shipmate (an amazing free app all cruisers should check it out). We were very excited to meet up and were initially worried that it might be difficult blind meeting another couple on such a large ship. Our fears were proven to be unwarranted however because quickly after boarding we realized we four were the ONLY 21-25yrs on the entire ship. So finding each other was easy and quickly we all became traveling buddies and good friends. Now being completely Objective about this voyage there are some very good and some not so good things about the ship and my experience on the ship. THE GOOD: The ship is laid out very well, there are many common areas and open spaces so movement even with many cruisers is easy, and at the same time, our group found many little quiet spots to chat and play games without the common racket and bustle of the masses. The Classic cruising staples such as Carnivals chocolate melting cake, chocolate buffet and sea day sit in brunches did not ever disappoint. Karaoke will always remain an amazing part of sailing, previously i had only watched others sing but thanks to a well timed Pina Colada I was soon up there with "HEY JUDE" and "DON'T STOP BELIEVING". As cruise ships go one of the BEST ideas was the incorporation of the retractable glass roof that looms above decks 9 and 10, it allowed for swimmers to swim in complete comfort even with Canada as our destination. But the biggest and Best part of Carnival Splendor were the crew and cruisers. Everyone for the most part were friendly and happy and it made the whole experience worthwhile. Not So Good: The food as many have already pointed out was "meh" Nothing I ate was "terrible" or "gross" but I found myself eating at both the sit downs and buffet and thinking that the very thing I was tasting wasn't as good as the local restaurant I have at home. The director although very funny when around was in my opinion not what I have expected out of a cruise director, He frequently addressed cruisers with incorrect times for various activities and i felt as though the entire flow of activities was weird. For example last chance karaoke on our last day at sea was from 1pm-4pm? The entertainment was so weak that on our port stop at Halifax we stopped in a Comic book store/ game store and then relied heavily upon Crabs against Humidity(amazing card game) for entertainment the following days. IN CONCLUSION: This was the best trip of my life! The ports were beautiful. The People Fantastic, brilliant weather, and I made a lasting friendship. I personally wouldn't change a thing and would definitely recommend this trip to anyone,,, prices warranting. Was this the best ship? No, was the food unbelievable? Nope, Was the entertainment unforgettable? Absolutely not. But Canada is beautiful, People that are cruising are always friendly and the price to value ratio makes this trip and similar future trips 100% worth it.

Best Trip Ever, But Not Best Ship

Carnival Splendor Cruise Review by loudwisdom

Trip Details
I have been on four cruises; one Norwegian, one Royal Caribbean, Carnival Freedom and now Carnival Splendor. I have also had the opportunity with my family to experience an inside cabin, ocean view stateroom, and balcony staterooms. I went on the Carnival Freedom January of 2012 on a six night cruise to grand Cayman and Jamaica. I only mention this because what I discovered on my first few moments on Carnival Splendor is that Carnival Freedom and Splendor are carbon copies of each other. The only strong discernible difference was instead of fish & chips on deck 10 of Freedom, Splendor offered a Rotisserie stand instead at the same exact location.
So my first impressions of Carnival Splendor after boarding were "this is nice, very pink, very "classic" decor. This particular cruise was of a 5 night round trip out of Manhattan New York cruise to St john's New Brunswick Canada, and Halifax Nova Scotia Canada. I traveled with my girlfriend of six years, this was to be our first time cruising without family and traveling abroad without family. We were super excited to meet up with some fellow cruisers who although we had never met before we had connected through the smartphone app shipmate (an amazing free app all cruisers should check it out). We were very excited to meet up and were initially worried that it might be difficult blind meeting another couple on such a large ship. Our fears were proven to be unwarranted however because quickly after boarding we realized we four were the ONLY 21-25yrs on the entire ship. So finding each other was easy and quickly we all became traveling buddies and good friends.
Now being completely Objective about this voyage there are some very good and some not so good things about the ship and my experience on the ship.
THE GOOD: The ship is laid out very well, there are many common areas and open spaces so movement even with many cruisers is easy, and at the same time, our group found many little quiet spots to chat and play games without the common racket and bustle of the masses. The Classic cruising staples such as Carnivals chocolate melting cake, chocolate buffet and sea day sit in brunches did not ever disappoint. Karaoke will always remain an amazing part of sailing, previously i had only watched others sing but thanks to a well timed Pina Colada I was soon up there with "HEY JUDE" and "DON'T STOP BELIEVING". As cruise ships go one of the BEST ideas was the incorporation of the retractable glass roof that looms above decks 9 and 10, it allowed for swimmers to swim in complete comfort even with Canada as our destination. But the biggest and Best part of Carnival Splendor were the crew and cruisers. Everyone for the most part were friendly and happy and it made the whole experience worthwhile.
Not So Good: The food as many have already pointed out was "meh" Nothing I ate was "terrible" or "gross" but I found myself eating at both the sit downs and buffet and thinking that the very thing I was tasting wasn't as good as the local restaurant I have at home. The director although very funny when around was in my opinion not what I have expected out of a cruise director, He frequently addressed cruisers with incorrect times for various activities and i felt as though the entire flow of activities was weird. For example last chance karaoke on our last day at sea was from 1pm-4pm? The entertainment was so weak that on our port stop at Halifax we stopped in a Comic book store/ game store and then relied heavily upon Crabs against Humidity(amazing card game) for entertainment the following days.
IN CONCLUSION: This was the best trip of my life! The ports were beautiful. The People Fantastic, brilliant weather, and I made a lasting friendship. I personally wouldn't change a thing and would definitely recommend this trip to anyone,,, prices warranting. Was this the best ship? No, was the food unbelievable? Nope, Was the entertainment unforgettable? Absolutely not. But Canada is beautiful, People that are cruising are always friendly and the price to value ratio makes this trip and similar future trips 100% worth it.
loudwisdom’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Ocean View
Cabin 6A 1372
The room was great I paid $299 per person for an ocean view stateroom (5 night). Couldn't beat the price and the extra room and addition of the window definitely makes this a great compromise between the balcony and inside cabin.
Riviera Deck Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Halifax
    If i could get a job lined up I would move here in an instant No questions asked and without delay. If Disney ever writes a movie with a city as its setting, surely the imagineers would visit Halifax for Inspiration. Strange Adventures in Halifax is perhaps run by the best shop owners ever. Bought $50 in games and they threw in an exclusive Halifax spider man comic and a doctor who expansion to the game we purchased for FREE! Super friendly people. This city has to be awarded cleanest city, the public washrooms by the piers are equipped with marble sinks and clean hand drying stations.
    View All 756 Halifax Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Halifax Cruise Port Review
  • St. John's (Newfoundland)
    St John's is beautiful. Clean , friendly, and many different shops, markets and parks to walk about. Sadly we arrived here on Columbus day / Canadian Thanksgiving so many shops were closed. However it was such a nice place made me never want to leave. I would definitely recommend NOT taking a shore excursion because the town is within walking distance and is sadly overlooked by the excursions.
    View All 98 St. John's (Newfoundland) Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's St. John's (Newfoundland) Cruise Port Review