Post Dry Dock - Carnival Conquest Review: Carnival Conquest Cruise Review by bobkat142

Carnival Conquest 5
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Post Dry Dock - Carnival Conquest Review

Sail Date: February 2009
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Galveston
We arrived at the port about 10:30 AM to avoid some of the traffic associated with the Mardi Gras parade being held Sunday afternoon. We parked in the EZ Cruise parking facility (pre-paid reservation) and were quickly loaded into a van (including luggage)and transported to the terminal where a porter took our bags. After a short wait they opened the entrance to the boarding terminal and began processing passengers. The boarding process was quick and painless. After a short wait in the waiting area, we went aboard the ship and were eating lunch by 12:30 PM.

At 1:30 PM, we checked out our room on the spa deck. Everything was ready, including the roses I had bought for my wife. Very, very lovely. We attended the muster drill and went to the CCer's meet and greet. Not as many people attended as had said they would. But, still enjoyable and met some really nice people. As always, we had to change our dinner time to the early dining (they haven't gotten that right on any of our More cruises). And, while we were there, we requested and received a nice table for two. The Maitre'd was very accommodating and extremely nice to all the people requesting changes to their dining arrangements. Our luggage was delivered to our room before early seating dinner. After dinner we explored the ship and were shown how to use the new slot machine cards (no coins anymore) by a very nice young lady. Since we didn't use the Casino, we don't know how the new card system is being received.

We spent a lot of our free time on the Lido deck. The large screen TV was great when there were events on the lido deck - an excellent view for all no matter where you sat. The live music was loud enough it made having a discussion difficult, but not so loud that it gave us a headache. Yes, they did have CNN on most of the time without the volume on during the live music. This didn't particularly bother us and the volume wasn't all that loud when there was no live music. I did notice they played movies in the evenings (at least on a few of the at sea days) on the big screen TV, but didn't pay attention to times or movie names since it was too cool and windy for us to sit on the lido deck in late evenings. Instead, we would retreat to our room and use the balcony for fresh air.

Everyone cruises for the food and drinks, so here goes. The coffee and tea were on the strong side, but no big deal, since a little water takes care of that. Definitely better strong than too weak. In the morning, you usually had to try several different coffee dispensers to find one that had coffee in them. The alcohol drinks were on the expensive side, but readily available, and excellent tasting. My only complaint - it was tiresome continually telling the waiter you didn't need another drink, especially when your glass was still more than half full. We ate all our breakfasts and lunches from the lido deck food services. Overall the Lido deck food (buffets, pizza, grill and deli) was good, the cinnamon rolls were excellent, and waiting lines were minimal. Our only complaint - the short hours that the Grille was open. It generally opened at noon and closed by 6:00 PM. It would have been nice to get a hamburger, hot dog, and/or nachos for dinner and/or later in the evening. We ate five dinners in the dining room and found the service to be outstanding - the food arrived quickly and was at the appropriate temperature. Our only complaint was that the dining room food, in general, could have used a little more herbs and spices. Desserts were definitely outstanding. We are very early risers and used room service to have coffee and a few rolls delivered to the room before the buffet lines opened every morning. This service was excellent and deliveries were always on time.

Of course, being a chocoholic, I had to sample the chocolate desert buffet the last day at sea. To be honest, I wasn't all that impressed. Personally, I thought the standard chocolate desserts served during the rest of the week in the dining room and on the lido deck were better. The chocolate melting cake was to die for! Less

Published 03/12/09

Cabin review: 8F1105 Balcony

Nice room with lots of storage.. at least for the two of us. Easy access to the lido deck without using the inside stairs and/or elevators. The balcony has a partial overhang that allows water being used to clean the decks above to filter down onto the balcony. In addition, sea spray can be felt when the ship is moving. This parial covering could definetly be a problem when it rains, limiting its use. Due to its location, music from the entertainment areas could be heard clearly when on the balcony 24/7. In our opinion, this takes away from the pleasure of sitting on the balcony and enjoying the ocean noises late at night. It was very, very windy on the balcony when the ship was moving. Since this was our first balcony room, we're not sure it was any worse than elsewhere on the ship. Overall, this balcony room was a great bargain for us (upgraded due to ship changes made in dry dock) and we definitly enjoyed our stay in this room. In the future, we'll probably book a balcony room on a lower deck.

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Port and Shore Excursions

We booked an island tour with Gerry from cozumeltaxi after reading all the cruise critic blogs. We left the ship once we were cleared and met Gerry in the taxi waiting area just outside the duty free shopping area. Once there, we discussed options and we off and running. Throughout the day, Gerry told us about the points of interest, culture, hurricane damage and changes as we toured the island. To name just a few, we stopped at two of the more famous Catholic churches, drove through the rich-and-famous and middle class neighborhoods, took the Mayan Ruins tour, stopped at a good number of landmarks around the island, wondered on one of the secluded beaches, and had lunch at a nice restaurant along the way. We spent about five hours with Gerry and were entertained the entire way with his commentary and a little singing. Gerry has a wonderful singing voice.

It was a great way to see the island, its landmarks and have a personalized tour - all at the same time. Sooo informative and enjoyable.

Once back, we had only a short time left and shopped in the duty free area for some souvenirs for our kids. We did buy a pair of tanzanite earrings that matched the pendant I had bought for my wife on our first cruise a good number of years ago.

Booking a tour with Gerry is highly recommended by us.

Read 5470 Cozumel Reviews

We booked this trip ourselves and did the 4 hour - two reef snorkel and stingray tour through Captain Marvins. After leaving the ship, we walked a very short distance to Captain Marvin's shop following the directions given without any problem. Check in time was 9:15 AM. The check in process was quick and we did some window shopping at several stores in the same complex while waiting for the tour to start at 10 AM. After a short drive to the boat, we were introduced to the boat captain and his mate, who took us out to the snorkeling site. The Carnival sponsored snorkel trips were cancelled due to heavy seas. Captain Marvins felt it was marginal and did take us out. It was a little rough (rolling waves) and you had to clear the water from the snorkel a few times. Everyone was given an air floatation vest to wear that made it easier to enjoy the snorkeling, and there was a current that required you work a little harder than had there been calm seas. It wasn't all that bad, after all, we're older, out-of-shape, people and had a wonderful time. The Captain and his mate kept a close eye on all the people and gave special attention to those that were not familiar with snorkeling. One couple had never snorkeled, received excellent instructions, and enjoyed thier snorkeling experience. The two reef areas we snorkeled were wonderful - a variety of coral, fishes, and even a couple of stingrays. The rough seas did prevent us from going to the deeper reef where eels are seen, but still a great experience. After snorkeling, we went to stingray city, were the mate showed us how to hold a stingray and everyone was allowed to hold, kiss and get a back massage by one. It was Great!!! We then returned to the dock and were transported back to Captain Marvins shop. They will drop people off at any point you want along the way back. That left us enough time to do some shopping. Which we did in the stores around Captain Marvins shop and in the duty free area. Overall, a great time and highly recommended.

We booked the Rose Hall estate tour through Carnival. We checked off the ship and those on the tour gathered in the duty free reception area. We boarded a bus with about fifteen other people. As we made our way through town, the tour guide showed us the points of interest and gave general information of culture, language, etc. Once at Rose Hall, we were assigned to a tour guide who led us through the site. This guided tour was very informative concerning the history of the building and people who have been there. Overall we enjoyed the tour and took a number of photos. The Witches Brew (alcoholic drink) was served at the end of the tour and was excellent. We returned to the bus and were driven back to the ship, stopping at a small shopping area for 20 minutes of shopping. We looked around at a few of the shops and did buy a small dress from one. The shop people were very pushy and not for the faint of heart. Personally, we enjoyed the bartering process and negotiated what we thought was a fair price for the dress. For the timid, I'd recommend staying on the bus!

Once we arrived back at the ship, we did a little shopping in the duty free shops, purchasing some Appleton Special Rum at a very reasonable price and a few souvenirs for our kids back home.

Oh, I did (male) set off the metal detector and was searched. I did not find the search to be intrusive... just a standard (see it all the time on police shows) pat down.

Overall a good time and would recommend to anyone.

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