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My family and I recently returned from the Carnival Liberty (May 17- May 24). Overall, I believe the ship with wonderful and the ports were equally as beautiful. We left out of San Juan, Puerto Rico which was quite simple. Advice: If you are leaving out of Puerto Rico, take an early flight in. Although the ship does not leave port until 10pm at night, that is considered one of your cruise days. Old San Juan has a lot of shopping and historical sights that are in walking distance of the port. Our flight arrived approximately 1:30pm and we were boarded on the ship, through security ect, by 3:00 which did include a 20 minute taxi ride from the airport to the cruise terminal. The buffet was open along with other food amenities (Guys Burger, Red Frog Rum Bar, Tequila Bar, Burrito/Taco station, Mongolian Wok). The best part was that our room was ready for us at the time of boarding...it seemed most, if not all rooms were ready. This made waiting for our luggage easier and we were able to go back off the ship and explore Old San Juan. The only thing that was not "open" that night was your reserved dining time, providing you chose to have a set dining time...that began the next night. This ship visited 5 ports throughout the 7 day cruise. This allowed for 1 "Sea Day", which we were fine with as we picked this itinerary based on the ports it visited. The next morning (Mon) we arrived in St. Thomas. There is plenty of shopping just walking off the ship, but if you'd like to visit a beach, you must take a taxi. Taxi's in my opinion were a tad pricey at $9 per person each way. We had a family of 4 adults [Round Trip= $72 + tip]. We choose by recommendation of the excursion desk to go to Coki Beach. This was approximately 30 minutes via open taxi bus. Beach was nice overall. Can get a bit crowded, but there are bathrooms available and a few drink/food huts for purchase. Next, Tues (Sail Day)...Wednesday was Barbados. This was a personal favorite for our family. We took Five-Star Catamaran (plus lunch) that we booked directly through Carnival...which is highly recommended. I can't stay enough about this tour. Transportation was included from port to catamaran marina. On board the staff took care of everyone and was engaged with the passengers. A buffet lunch was served with an assortment of Caribbean cuisine in addition to soda and alcoholic beverages free of charge. Personally i recommend the rum punch! We were taken to snorkel with the sea turtles. We saw plenty and they even swam close to us. In addition we saw a large sting ray-- no worries, professional divers were in the water with us at all times. Following (Thursday)... was St. Lucia. This island was very mountainous and had pretty views. I don't recommend venturing too far out on your own. We happened to take a taxi tour, which was nice for the price, but we would have felt better if it was directly through Carnival. You hear too much negatively about the island and it causes some worry in the back of your mind. Friday was St. Kitts. This was another personal favorite. They have a beautiful shopping plaza directly off the cruise terminal. We had a lot of fun taking pictures with the monkeys ($5 per person)-- not bad considering it was a really cool experience and they were super cute. We had an excursion booked for later in the day which was a Jeep Safari tour. It took us through the towns, up into the rainforest and finally down the coast onto a golden sand beach. The views from here were simply beautiful and there were four star restaurants and clean bathroom facilities available. Saturday was St. Maarten, the last port. Again, there was a good amount of shopping off the ship, but mostly everyone took the watertaxi to the beach area with additional shopping. The watertaxi itself was $7 per person, with unlimited amount of trips. This was a good deal, however we were enjoying ourselves on the beach so we did not need to take the watertaxi back (to and from was approximately 5-10 minutes tops). We rented 2 beach chairs, an umbrella, and a bucket of drinks for only $20. This was well worth it. Drinks were any of your choice, including beers. They also gave you free wi-fi in-case you needed to catch up on things back home. On the beach there were jetskii rentals. We rented two ($45 each for a half hour)....we were out there close to an hour! We had free range of where to go up along the beach coast. Disembarkation would probably be my only complaint. For US citizens, you needed to go to a different area of the ship at a particular time. There were many long lines and it was unorganized in the sense that anyone coming off the stairs at any given time would easily hop to the front of the line. Once the line moved and you approached customs, it was much simplier and we off the ship in a timely manner. I highly recommend this ship-- the ports were beautiful and the food and service on board I have only good things to say. I've been on quite a few ships and I feel the food was quite good on this one. Our cabin was always taken care of and was of good size...(be realistic on expectations for cabin size) -- entertainment was average, but comedy shows were great! Good Value for the money~ have a great trip!!

Very Happy with the Liberty

Carnival Liberty Cruise Review by bhoeppner

Trip Details
My family and I recently returned from the Carnival Liberty (May 17- May 24). Overall, I believe the ship with wonderful and the ports were equally as beautiful. We left out of San Juan, Puerto Rico which was quite simple. Advice: If you are leaving out of Puerto Rico, take an early flight in. Although the ship does not leave port until 10pm at night, that is considered one of your cruise days. Old San Juan has a lot of shopping and historical sights that are in walking distance of the port. Our flight arrived approximately 1:30pm and we were boarded on the ship, through security ect, by 3:00 which did include a 20 minute taxi ride from the airport to the cruise terminal. The buffet was open along with other food amenities (Guys Burger, Red Frog Rum Bar, Tequila Bar, Burrito/Taco station, Mongolian Wok). The best part was that our room was ready for us at the time of boarding...it seemed most, if not all rooms were ready. This made waiting for our luggage easier and we were able to go back off the ship and explore Old San Juan. The only thing that was not "open" that night was your reserved dining time, providing you chose to have a set dining time...that began the next night.

This ship visited 5 ports throughout the 7 day cruise. This allowed for 1 "Sea Day", which we were fine with as we picked this itinerary based on the ports it visited. The next morning (Mon) we arrived in St. Thomas. There is plenty of shopping just walking off the ship, but if you'd like to visit a beach, you must take a taxi. Taxi's in my opinion were a tad pricey at $9 per person each way. We had a family of 4 adults [Round Trip= $72 + tip]. We choose by recommendation of the excursion desk to go to Coki Beach. This was approximately 30 minutes via open taxi bus. Beach was nice overall. Can get a bit crowded, but there are bathrooms available and a few drink/food huts for purchase.

Next, Tues (Sail Day)...Wednesday was Barbados. This was a personal favorite for our family. We took Five-Star Catamaran (plus lunch) that we booked directly through Carnival...which is highly recommended. I can't stay enough about this tour. Transportation was included from port to catamaran marina. On board the staff took care of everyone and was engaged with the passengers. A buffet lunch was served with an assortment of Caribbean cuisine in addition to soda and alcoholic beverages free of charge. Personally i recommend the rum punch! We were taken to snorkel with the sea turtles. We saw plenty and they even swam close to us. In addition we saw a large sting ray-- no worries, professional divers were in the water with us at all times.

Following (Thursday)... was St. Lucia. This island was very mountainous and had pretty views. I don't recommend venturing too far out on your own. We happened to take a taxi tour, which was nice for the price, but we would have felt better if it was directly through Carnival. You hear too much negatively about the island and it causes some worry in the back of your mind.

Friday was St. Kitts. This was another personal favorite. They have a beautiful shopping plaza directly off the cruise terminal. We had a lot of fun taking pictures with the monkeys ($5 per person)-- not bad considering it was a really cool experience and they were super cute. We had an excursion booked for later in the day which was a Jeep Safari tour. It took us through the towns, up into the rainforest and finally down the coast onto a golden sand beach. The views from here were simply beautiful and there were four star restaurants and clean bathroom facilities available.

Saturday was St. Maarten, the last port. Again, there was a good amount of shopping off the ship, but mostly everyone took the watertaxi to the beach area with additional shopping. The watertaxi itself was $7 per person, with unlimited amount of trips. This was a good deal, however we were enjoying ourselves on the beach so we did not need to take the watertaxi back (to and from was approximately 5-10 minutes tops). We rented 2 beach chairs, an umbrella, and a bucket of drinks for only $20. This was well worth it. Drinks were any of your choice, including beers. They also gave you free wi-fi in-case you needed to catch up on things back home. On the beach there were jetskii rentals. We rented two ($45 each for a half hour)....we were out there close to an hour! We had free range of where to go up along the beach coast.

Disembarkation would probably be my only complaint. For US citizens, you needed to go to a different area of the ship at a particular time. There were many long lines and it was unorganized in the sense that anyone coming off the stairs at any given time would easily hop to the front of the line. Once the line moved and you approached customs, it was much simplier and we off the ship in a timely manner.

I highly recommend this ship-- the ports were beautiful and the food and service on board I have only good things to say. I've been on quite a few ships and I feel the food was quite good on this one. Our cabin was always taken care of and was of good size...(be realistic on expectations for cabin size) -- entertainment was average, but comedy shows were great! Good Value for the money~ have a great trip!!
bhoeppner’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin 8D 8720
Good Size-- no bigger or smaller than other ships. However, there are a lack of outlets for charging, so bring a portable one. Cabin was always taken care off with clean towels day and night. Two twin beds (converted to king) was very comfortable. Extra bunks was average in comfort. Balcony was a nice size with two chairs.

Overall, very satisfied.
Lido Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Catamaran Tour
    Can not say enough about how wonderful this excursion was. Great ride on the catamaran with scenic views of the island. Snorkeled with the sea turtles and even saw a large sting ray. Snorkeling gear was provided and multiple stops were made, including time on the beach. Lunch buffet was included in the price. Served Caribbean cuisine and had unlimited soft drinks and alcoholic beverages...I highly recommend the rum punch! :)
    View All 94 Catamaran Tour Reviews
  • San Juan
    Shopped and explored Fort after checking into the ship. So much to see and do just in Old San Juan. Highly recommend if taking a flight in to arrive no later than 4pm otherwise you 1st day of the cruise you miss out on. Food and most ship amenities are available with exception of shopping and casino.
    View All 3,768 San Juan Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's San Juan Cruise Port Review
  • Jeep Tour
    This was a safari jeep 4x4 tour. We were taken through the town, up into the rain forest (beautiful) and then down by the golden sand beaches. This location in particular had 4 star restaurants and clean bathroom/changing facilities to use. The views of the mountains and oveall scenery was picturesque. Wish we had more time to spend on this beach. Water was nice, but could get a tad rough. Jetski rentals and paddleboards were available as well. Tour began approximately 1:30 and had us back to the ship promptly at 4:30.
    View All 20 Jeep Tour Reviews
  • St. Lucia
    Visually beautiful island, but did not want to venture too far out onto this island due to the high crime rate. A small area of shopping was available right off the ship. Weather was a bit cloudy so we were unable to see the Pitons from afar.
    View All 1,387 St. Lucia Cruise Port Reviews
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  • St. Maarten
    Took watertaxi over the beach and shopping area. Great price, $7 per person all day. We enjoyed the beach that we did not shuttle back and forth. We rented from a person on the beach 2 chairs, an umbrella, and 5 drinks of our choice (water, beer, soda) for only $20. We also rented jetskiis for $45, we got 2...it was for a half hour, but we were out there much longer! So much fun as we had free range of where to ride. It was $45 for the jet skii alone so you were able to have more than one passenger if you liked. Shopping off the ship terminal was available as well.
    View All 4,729 St. Maarten Cruise Port Reviews
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  • St. Thomas
    We used a taxi service to visit Coki Beach...recommended beach from Carnival Excursion desk. A bit pricy $9 per person one way to the beach. Beach was near Coral World and had bathrooms, few shops, food, and drinks available for purchase. Approximately 25-30 minutes from cruise terminal. Great views of ship from on top of mountain
    View All 4,648 St. Thomas Cruise Port Reviews
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