Carnival has a great thing going. Overall my famy of 7 had a great time, but I feel like they are constantly trying to sell you SOMETHING! Which is not very relaxing for mama. You can eat all you want, but for up charge pay more and eat in the steak house or Italian resturants. (We did neither) For breakfast we did room service or the morning buffet. For lunch we did mostly buffet. The pizza & burgers were the kids favorites, ususlly a long line. There's a very nice sandwhich shop at the back of the boat, the line moved quickly. I never did get to try the Mongolian BBQ, the line was always a mile long! For evening we ate in the Northern Lights Dining. The service was amazing, but the atmosphere was alittle underwhelming. If I'm going to get 7 people dressed in formal wear I want to see flowers, ice scriptures, candlelight....like the movies. It was not at all like the movies.
We had small state rooms on the 9th floor. Plenty of room for 2-3 people. Room stewards were attentive and kept us well cared for. Now my shower no matter how I tried flooded every time! Just have extra towels.
MOST IMPORTANT!!!!! We did a 7 day cruise to Cozumel, Belize and Roatan. We did NOT get to do our last port ROATAN. Excursions books, everyone up at 7am, sunscreened up, captain announced about 8am we would not be disembarking. Ugh!!! The weather looked beautiful, but it was to windy (I've seen worse) & the captain chose to skip it. Whereas I appreciate safety being a priority I was very sad. Later that day the captain announced we would stop in Costa Maya to replace this stop. 7:30-1:30. So we spent a great deal of time stressing about excursions, time shorten, and I had done no reserve on area things to do....ugh! I heard from one gentleman that Carnival is unable to make this port 40% of the time. I do not know if this is true, but I didn't get to go there. On our Belize day you have to go to dining room for a tender (a small boat to take you to shore). This was very slow. We arrived about 8:30 to dining room, did not get to Belize until 10am. Nothing worse than waiting when you can see it right there!
Overall ship days seemed crowded. It was hard to move around the boat during busy times and lines were long!!!! There also appeared to be a lot of unsupervised children everywhere, screaming up and down halls at 11pm, jumping into hot tubs, cutting in lines. Not sure how carnival get fix that.
Show times and comedy was probably our favorite family times. The do a nice job here. My only suggestion is do not do bingo right before a show. There was a huge mess after bingo and showtime people are coming in and bingo always ran over!
So as I write this we are back to Galviston and waiting, again for hours to disembark. We've been waiting since 8am, it's 9:13 and they are only on area 3 (we are 11)
So to summarize I had fun, the kids had fun, but carnival is in NO hurry to get you anywhere fast.
Place to sleep, nothing fancy!