Carnival Liberty Cruise Review by Mother of Chaos
- Sail Date: July 2009
- Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived at the Port of Miami at 11:45am and were on the ship, at the pool, drinks in had, by 12:30.
Our kids ages are 13, 10, 8, and 5 so we experienced all of the levels of the Camp Carnival offerings. We were very pleased overall with the kids' programs. My eldest daughter went to the first night's activities, quickly made a group of friends and hung out with them the rest of the cruise. They definitely took part in many of the organized activities like scavenger hunts but also just hung out together and had a great time. My 10 year old son went to Camp Carnival a couple of times, made a couple of friends, but chose to hang out on his own and with us more than with anyone he met. The 8 year old loved the Camp activities and had a great time on the two nights we let her stay in the 'group babysitting' area. She prefers to be with us though and so didn't take part in many organized activities. The same could be said for the 5 year old. He had a great time when there but was with us more often than not. The staff was excellent and the security was top notch. We were able to borrow a cell phone from the Camp so we could be located immediately if necessary. THis also came in handy when the older two kids were on their own with friends and needed to check in with us.
We had two adjoining cabins forward on the 7th deck. They each had small balconies which was really nice. In each room we had a double bed and a single, which worked great for us. Our room steward was very good. THe cabin was always spotlessly clean and he left cute towel animals for the kids. We rarely saw him but he was very efficient.
We had one maintenance issue which was when the bar holding up the shower head fell off the wall. I called maintenance and the guy was there within 30 mins. He had to go get a part, we went to dinner, and it was fixed when we came back. Very impressed with their efficiency in that regard.
We ate in the early seating in the Silver Dining Room. Our waiters, Bags and Sudiana, were incredible. THey were so accomodating and helpful. My daughter still says she misses Bags! They knew by the 2nd night how to cook the steaks, everyone's names, and the drink server (Olga) soon knew what the kids all would want for drinks and would just bring them to the table before we even ordered. The food was excellent.
We usually would eat breakfast and lunch from the buffet or sandwich area or pizza counter. Of course there were lines - there were a couple thousand people on board. There was never a really long wait, the food was plentiful and fresh, and every one of my 6 family members could always find something they wanted. We purchased Fountain Cards for all of us the first day of the cruise and it was always easy to get sodas at the bars. The alcoholic drinks were good, the service was fairly quick, there always seemed to be a waiter walking around to get drink orders.
We went to a couple of shows and they were all pretty good. Kind of cheesy but well done for a ship. My youngest daughter was able to participate in a Talent Show for kids which was really fun for her. They got to perform on the same stage that all the shows were on so she had a good time with that.
Our port stops were Ochos Rios, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel. My husband and I have been to Grand Cayman before and knew we wanted to take the kids on the snorkeling tour of Stingray City. I booked our tour through Moby Dick's and we were pleased with it. It was a smaller boat so not as many people, which was nice. They kids learned how to snorkel and got to play with the stingrays (2 loved them, 2 were scared).
In Ochos Rios we took a tour that just went to the Dunns River Falls, and then dropped us off downtown. I was happy with the tour operator I booked with (the name is escaping me). The falls were fun although I couldnt believe how many people were in there all at once. It was a little rough for my 5 year old, but he made it. After the falls we just went to Margaritaville and ate, swam and hung out the rest of the afternoon. The bar has a pool in it with a waterslide and my kids must have gone down it 100 times each. The slide was enclosed on top and went over the bar. They really loved it. And compared to a lot of the island bars I have been to it wasnt too crazy and loud. We really enjoyed hanging out there.
Cozumel was our favorite stop. I had booked an independent tour to drive dune buggies around the island. The guide picked us up at the right time, we got to our dune buggies and drove around the island for about 4 hours, stopping to snorkel, to tour a small ruins, and to eat a freshly prepared Mexican lunch on the beach. Our tour guides were outstanding and we were with some other fun people. Definitely worth the money.
Getting on and off the ship at the ports was frustrating but not unexpected. Lots and lots of lines. We did stand in line at Grand Cayman for over an hour in the very hot sun with hundreds of other people trying to get on a tender back to the ship.
For Debarkation we chose to carry our bags ourselves as we had an 11:25am flight. We were in the 6th group to be called. The only problem we had there was that we could not get an elevator and had to walk down the stairs with our 9 suitcases!! Our fault for bringing so much! However, we got off the ship, in a cab, and were at the airport in plenty of time.
We will definitely cruise again with our kids. The Carnival Liberty was a great ship for our family and we can't wait to plan our next trip!!
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7211 - adjoining with our other cabin. Very quiet. Nice balcony.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
Grand Cayman (Georgetown)Loved snorkeling. Moby Dick's Tour Operator was great. The tendering process was painful. Over an hour in line to get on a tender.View All 3,479 Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Review
Ocho RiosWe enjoyed climbing the Falls but wouldn't do it again. The local vendors were extremely pushy which made all of us uncomfortable. Margaritaville was really fun and great to hang out in all afternoon.View All 1,083 Ocho Rios Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Ocho Rios Cruise Port Review