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My husband and I and two friends went on the Cayamo music cruise on the Carnival Victory out of Miami visiting Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman and Cozumel. The Miami airport is one of the worst in the country if the cruise lines got together and demanded a change in management it would improve things greatly. We stayed at the Embassy Suites at the airport and used their shuttle service from the airport and to the port. Good hotel; efficient service. Embarkation was a complete zoo, it took almost an hour to get on the ship. The only good part was that one of the bands played for us while we were waiting. This was a special trip organized around singer/songwriters like Lyle Lovett, Emmylou Harris, John Hiatt, Shawn Colvin, Patty Griffin and a whole bunch of excellent performers. There were impromptu jams all over the ship and that part of the cruise was exceptional and not at all usual for Carnival, I'm sure. We have sailed regular cruises on NCL (transatlantic) and RCCL(western caribbean) and I will compare the usual cruise ship features. Carnival's ocean view room on the Riviera deck was exceptionally roomy, clean and comfortable. Much better than the ocean view rooms on the Jewel and Enchantment. Plenty of storage. Interactive TV was not too wonderful, though, took many tries to check our room charges. Don't bother with the internet service on the Victory, it was much worse, but they did reimburse my husband for his futile attempt to get email. Unlike the Jewel and Enchantment the cell phone and internet service on Victory were awful instead of just cumbersome as on the other ships. Wait and check your email in port. The decoration of the ship's public areas (except the hallways on the cabin decks which were very nice) was appalling. I am sure there is medication for whatever that poor decorator suffered from and I wish he had taken it before inflicting himself on the Victory. The public areas were also very cold. The food everywhere was standard fare. Definitely not up to RCCL or NCL. Some standouts were the Greek food at the Taste of Nations on the triton pool deck, the chips and salsa at the grill, also on the pool deck, and the desserts in the Mediterranean buffet. My husband enjoyed the sushi at the sushi bar in the casino. We do not gamble so can't comment on the casino. My husband did a two tank dive arranged through the cruise line at Cozumel and loved it. Our friends and I wandered through town and did some shopping, had some seafood and generally soaked up the ambiance of that beautiful island. At Grand Cayman we did get off the ship but it was too much for hubby so he headed for the nearest internet cafe and I found my own private beach behind a seafood restaurant parking lot (got off the tender, turned left and walked about a mile and a half). The people of Grand Cayman are some of the nicest in the world and generally very attractive people. I don't know if they deport ugly people or what but the general level of beauty was noticeable. Jamaica was astonishing. After hearing all the stories we were prepared for an unpleasant experience but we met universally kind and friendly people. We went on the ship organized White River tubing and loved it. I would do it again. Jamaica is beautiful and we were not afraid at any time walking around after our tour. Getting off the ship in Miami was painless and pleasantly surprising given the embarkation craziness. I enjoyed the cruise because of the places we went and the music and performers and musicians for the love of music who were on the ship but I would not do Carnival again without that draw. Carnival just was not up to the standards set by NCL and RCCL. One other note, on the other ships we were constantly reminded by staff to use the hand sanitizer stations which were ubiquitous on the Jewel and Enchantment. Not one was to be seen on the Victory. My hubby did suffer an on again/off again bowel problem while on the ship and a day after. He is fine now but I don't know how much of that is attributable to the sanitary conditions on the ship. I came through with no problems.

Cayamo cruise

Carnival Victory Cruise Review by dwolfe

Trip Details
My husband and I and two friends went on the Cayamo music cruise on the Carnival Victory out of Miami visiting Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman and Cozumel. The Miami airport is one of the worst in the country if the cruise lines got together and demanded a change in management it would improve things greatly. We stayed at the Embassy Suites at the airport and used their shuttle service from the airport and to the port. Good hotel; efficient service.
Embarkation was a complete zoo, it took almost an hour to get on the ship. The only good part was that one of the bands played for us while we were waiting. This was a special trip organized around singer/songwriters like Lyle Lovett, Emmylou Harris, John Hiatt, Shawn Colvin, Patty Griffin and a whole bunch of excellent performers. There were impromptu jams all over the ship and that part of the cruise was exceptional and not at all usual for Carnival, I'm sure. We have sailed regular cruises on NCL (transatlantic) and RCCL(western caribbean) and I will compare the usual cruise ship features.
Carnival's ocean view room on the Riviera deck was exceptionally roomy, clean and comfortable. Much better than the ocean view rooms on the Jewel and Enchantment. Plenty of storage. Interactive TV was not too wonderful, though, took many tries to check our room charges. Don't bother with the internet service on the Victory, it was much worse, but they did reimburse my husband for his futile attempt to get email. Unlike the Jewel and Enchantment the cell phone and internet service on Victory were awful instead of just cumbersome as on the other ships. Wait and check your email in port. The decoration of the ship's public areas (except the hallways on the cabin decks which were very nice) was appalling. I am sure there is medication for whatever that poor decorator suffered from and I wish he had taken it before inflicting himself on the Victory. The public areas were also very cold.
The food everywhere was standard fare. Definitely not up to RCCL or NCL. Some standouts were the Greek food at the Taste of Nations on the triton pool deck, the chips and salsa at the grill, also on the pool deck, and the desserts in the Mediterranean buffet. My husband enjoyed the sushi at the sushi bar in the casino. We do not gamble so can't comment on the casino.
My husband did a two tank dive arranged through the cruise line at Cozumel and loved it. Our friends and I wandered through town and did some shopping, had some seafood and generally soaked up the ambiance of that beautiful island.
At Grand Cayman we did get off the ship but it was too much for hubby so he headed for the nearest internet cafe and I found my own private beach behind a seafood restaurant parking lot (got off the tender, turned left and walked about a mile and a half). The people of Grand Cayman are some of the nicest in the world and generally very attractive people. I don't know if they deport ugly people or what but the general level of beauty was noticeable. Jamaica was astonishing. After hearing all the stories we were prepared for an unpleasant experience but we met universally kind and friendly people. We went on the ship organized White River tubing and loved it. I would do it again. Jamaica is beautiful and we were not afraid at any time walking around after our tour.
Getting off the ship in Miami was painless and pleasantly surprising given the embarkation craziness. I enjoyed the cruise because of the places we went and the music and performers and musicians for the love of music who were on the ship but I would not do Carnival again without that draw. Carnival just was not up to the standards set by NCL and RCCL.
One other note, on the other ships we were constantly reminded by staff to use the hand sanitizer stations which were ubiquitous on the Jewel and Enchantment. Not one was to be seen on the Victory. My hubby did suffer an on again/off again bowel problem while on the ship and a day after. He is fine now but I don't know how much of that is attributable to the sanitary conditions on the ship. I came through with no problems.
dwolfe’s Full Rating Summary
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