My wife and I just returned from a delightful cruise on the Valor. This was our second cruise with Carnival and we thoroughly enjoyed both of them. We chose this cruise because of its itinerary... We loved the idea of being able to make stops at so many ports of call on one cruise. While the weather did not fully cooperate(we did have some rain showers on this trip)we had a wonderful time. Besides...we come from a cold weather state and any rain shower is better than a snow storm and below zero temps! Our embarkation went very smoothly and quickly and we were on the ship relaxing by approximately 1:30pm. Getting to the cruise...we were not very impressed with either Barbados or St. Thomas but we very much appreciated the opportunity for a visit to these ports nonetheless. In fairness...Barbados was more enjoyable than St. Thomas as we took a tour(booked through Carnival) which allowed us to tour a rum distillery, a plantation home, and mahogany carving facility. The tour was pretty good and a decent value. I think the rain showers played a role in our distaste for St. Thomas. As for the remaining three ports, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, and St. Maarten...these were delightful. But before I elaborate on these ports let me say that we were once again impressed by the staff on board the Valor. Our room Steward was Wilmer(sp?) and he treated us with the courtesy and friendliness that we have come to expect from Carnival....he is an excellent representative of what kind of person is employed by Carnival Cruise Lines. Our wait staff in the dining room, Washington Lower, was lead by Michael and once again we were impressed. He was attentive without being obtrusive and was very friendly. Getting back to the cruise itself, we stopped in St. Lucia and toured with Cosol Tours( we booked this tour ahead of time online). It was an excellent tour with a number of delightful and informative stops. Very well organized with great personnel and his, that is owner Nereus Francis', equipment was top notch...the vans were late model, roomy, and comfortable...a great tour all around. The next day we stopped in St. Kitts....this time we took a cab ride to Cockleshell Beach. This cab ride cost us $12/person round trip...although, as we have discovered the amount charged by taxi drivers varies by how many people occupy the cab. This is not a hard fast rule though as at times the amounts charged seem arbitrary. The beach itself was very nice and we rented a umbrella and two chairs for about $15-20. It was a very nice day at the beach. The shopping in St. Kitts was decent as well. When we finished shopping we went back to the ship early in order to indulge ourselves in the amazing pizza served on board...this stuff is amazing although the one complaint we had was the guy running the pizza place was not very friendly and he would disappear in his back room completely ignoring guests waiting out front...perhaps he was understaffed? Our last stop was St. Maarten...this was a wonderful way to finish our island stops. We chose to start the day shopping and this was great. We saved the cab fare and walked the short 15 minutes from the pier to the shopping area known as the Boardwalk. There are a great number of shops with merchandise to be had in all price ranges...we had an excellent time. When we tired of shopping we rented an umbrella and two chairs plus 5 beers or waters for $20. We went back to the ship early to enjoy the sun and relax in the hot tub. Our supper in the dining room was excellent(we never had a bad meal there)! On Sunday morning we did the self-disembarkation...this was a painless and fast way to exit the ship and we were able to make our way to the airport and home. We had a great time and if I can swing it we will cruise with Carnival again next year!
We were offered an upgrade to this cabin after initially booking an interior....what a tremendous thing that was. We thoroughly enjoyed our cabin and its roominess. It was so very nice to be able to have a place of solitude on which to enjoy morning coffee. We were delighted with this cabin...I would recommend bringing along a daily dose of Dramamine as we noticed quite a difference between this cabin and the interior cabin amidship we had last year. Seemed to be a lot of rocking and rolling...but with a daily dose of Dramamine we had absolutely no trouble at all.