Carnival Vista Cruise Review by jenster212
- Sail Date: June 2016
- Destination: Western Mediterranean
The ship is the best one we have been on. Having previously been on a Carnival ship in the Caribbean we were slightly apprehensive as we found that ship a bit garish and plastic. However we were delighted to find a modern, sleek and sophisticated ship awaiting us on the Vista.
We had a premium balcony cabin on deck 6 at the back. The cabin was great with a huge balcony and located in a good part of the ship for us. We did have some noise issues from the Havanna bar on the first night but these were quickly resolved by guest services. Only thing is the bathroom has the cursed shower curtain - we felt Carnival should have upgraded to screens on a new ship particularly in premium cabins. One Other minor issue is the balcony door which is a door rather than a sliding patio. However noise wise it was people slamming cabin doors that was more of an issue than the balcony door.
Although the ship will attract kids and is fantastic for kids, we hardly noticed them, there is so much to do on the ship for adults and kids that as an adult you can easily find a place without kids and even without people! The ship never felt busy despite being full. We never had to queue for food, sun beds or anything other than the sky ride! The water park, sky ride and golf area is great and there are so many places to sit and relax.
Food wise, the choice at lunch was outstanding. Burgers, burritos, pizzas and seafood all made fresh and to your choice as well as the usual buffet and restaurants. Everything tasted great. At dinner however, the service in Horizons was the biggest let down of the cruise. This was a shame as again the food was mostly great. About 5/10 days we had to get a buzzer and wait for a table (10mins) but on two of those days the buzzer didn't work and after waiting 45 mins we went to the dining room to be told it should have gone off! Only once did we find the table service acceptable, on the other nine days it was very slow. One day it took 20mins to take our order and serve us bread and water another 25 minutes to then serve the starter and after that another 25minutes to get our main. We missed the show this night along with a few other nights because of this. The waiting staff were overall not the most friendly and it definitely felt like they did not have enough staff in the dining room. Carnival really need to improve this as it is the biggest let down. If the service was as it was on the one good night every night, then I would have given the cruise 5 stars.
Entertainment wise, we only caught two shows due to the dining issues and some nights out of choice. Both were fantastic and very professional. The seating in the lounge is strange but ok. We went to quite a few of the comedy shows which were mostly great. These were very popular and you needed to get there at least 5-10 mins beforehand to get a seat. The ship has a great sports bar showing all sports so you shouldn't miss any sporting events. The deck parties are good fun and well attended.
The drinks after adding tips etc are quite expensive but only the same as the other American ships. Strangely Carnival allowed you to take alcohol onboard at ports and we brought on two bottles of prosecco which we enjoyed on the balcony.
The ports of call were good although in Marseille we slightly resented the fact that firstly Carnival docked several miles from the centre despite seeing other ships docked in the centre and then charged people 17dollars each to get into the centre (10 min journey) which was a rip off. Carnival should not be making money from passengers for simply getting them into the place they advertise as a port of call. This charge in Marseille should be no more than 5dollar each return if not free. Hence we chose not to get off. This was our last day and left a slightly bitter taste.
Finally one minor point is the announcements!!! Each day shortly before docking a loud announcement would be made by the cruise director telling us we had arrived. So on some days this was 6.30 - 7am! This is not needed - we are not children and can read the leaflet and tv the day before to find out what time we dock. This meant we were woken up early each day despite some days not needing to get up early. On the disembarkation day these announcements were actually blasted into your cabin from 6am every 15 minutes despite not having to be out your cabin until 8.30!! This felt a bit holiday camp ish and military and is not needed.
Overall I would recommend this ship to anyone of any age kids or no kids in Europe. Whether the atmosphere onboard will be different in the Caribbean however will be interesting to see!
Tip - download the app which can be accessed onboard for free and is great to check the daily schedule.
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