This was our first cruise ever and first real family holiday. My husband and I walked randomly into a travel agent's office one day just playing the idea in our head for a family holiday and within two days, had booked the cruise. We have 4 children, aged 13, 11, 8 and 4. To be honest, I was a little nervous about a cruise vacation. But we are now hooked. We've caught the cruising bug and can't wait to go on another holiday. The kids absolutely loved every single minute. From just being on the Ship, to the onboard activities, to the shore excursions and particularly the 24 hour icecream. I came away from the holiday so very proud of all of them. It was a fantastic time. Because of our large family, we had to book two staterooms but that didn't end up bothering us at all. We were only in them to sleep anyway. My husband was in one room with two of our kids and I was in the other room with our other two kids. We loved the waterslides and I even braved the Green Thunder. The entertainment was great, although I wish there was a little more earlier entertainment for young children. But after a day or two, I worked out it was easy to put our youngest in her PJ's and then go to the shows. She slept through most of the late shows on my lap. The dining options were good. I found the main Empire the best for getting the kids what they wanted each night. But we generally stuck to Lido Buffet for Breakfast and Lunch each day. On shore days, we'd do an excursion in the morning, then return back to the Ship for lunch and then go back onto shore for the rest of the day. The worked really well for us and we didn't have to outlay extra for meals on shore. The entertainment in the dining room each night was great and the kids loved the singing and dancing waiters. The waiters would often entertain the kids with one on one magic tricks or teaching them to fold napkins. The staff were lovely and friendly. My youngest kids loved the kids club and begged to go there whenever they could. My oldest went once but preferred to hang around with us or do his own thing from time to time. We can't compare Carnival Spirit to any other ship, as this is our first. But we did thoroughly enjoy our vacation and can't wait to cruise again.
We started in 1106 and 1110 - an oceanview statesroom on deck 1 forward. It was a lovely room and had a great view out the porthole. The rooms are an okay size. All we did was shower and sleep in them. They were always clean and the towel animals every day made the kids excited to come back to the room to see what was waiting for them. Mid cruise we were giving an upgrade to balcony rooms as they wanted to do some bathroom maintenance in the rooms we were staying in. We were moved to 5145 and 5157 on deck 5 mid ship. These were balcony rooms obstructed view. No difference in the size of the rooms just the addition of the balcony.