Fabulous time...already wish we were back!!!: Carnival Valor Cruise Review by roxysurf84

Carnival Valor 5
Member Since 2009
30 Forum Posts

Overall Member Rating

Fabulous time...already wish we were back!!!

Sail Date: December 2009
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Miami
5 of my girlfriends(25 yrs old) and I chose this ship (Carnival Valor) and cruise because of its low price and the different destinations (and sushi bar!). we did not stay in miami overnight- just flew in sunday morning and took a cab to the port ($24 for all 6 of us!) We have been back only a few days and REALLY miss everything about the trip!!

Embarkation was relatively quick. When you are boarding just keep in mind that the earlier you get there the better- you have more time to explore/eat before you leave the port if you do. Also, there are thousands of people all trying to get on a ship and go through the security, so it will be crowded! Just relax and get excited for your trip while you wait! The bags did not get to our rooms till after 1pm so bring a change of clothes with you so you can get in the pool!

Since there was 6 of us, we split up into two different "inside" cabins. It was like a dorm room with a small bathroom but since we were only in the rooms More to sleep and get ready for dinner, it did not bother us at all! Our cabin was very clean (although we opted to wipe it down quick with chlorox wipes just to be sure).The different towel animals were really cute to come back to everynight after dinner too! The only thing we will go for next time is a window in the room- it was very confusing when it was pitch black in the room at 9am...

The first sea day we got up early and put out towels on some chairs by the slide on the main part of the lido deck. There were lots of activities that were planned for both of the days at sea. Try to do and see as much as you can, you get to meet a lot of cool people and still have time in the sun! Our favorite by far was the hairy chest contest! We took lots of dips down the slide! The pools were very small and filled with kids(and were salt water) so we opted for a 'fun dip' on the slides.

Port Days: I wrote reviews for the ports also, but I recommend doing non-carnival tours. They are much cheaper and they were all reliable- just check on the port of call message boards for suggestions. Also, we had room service morning of ports so we had more time to get sleep instead of rushing and waiting on the breakfast lines. **Bring ziplock bags to take some food with you off the boat for the day!**

Dining: Dinner time was the time of the day that my girlfriends and I were most looking forward to!! Our waiter Boris (in the Washington Dining Room) entertained us and was a wonderful waiter!! He was so nice and was very hard working. By the end of the week we were very sad to leave him, since he was a large reason why we had such an enjoyable trip! The food was very good. We are not big 'foodies' but we definately know what a good steak tastes like! We had a few appitizers each night and had a good sampling of everything. For desert we HIGHLY reccommend the chocolate melting cake. it is to die for!! Some people were rude to the wait staff and complained about lack of fast service- the workers have more tables than they should and with very demanding people they can get stressed out. Just relax and enjoy the food and your company! On most nights the wait staff sang a song or did a dance for us which was hilarious!

Entertainment: By far the best place to go at night was the Piano Bar! We LOVED Larry! Singing along was our favorite way to start out the night. The comedy shows were pretty good and the 80's dance show was also great! The disco was fun but not too many people went.

Disembarkation: This morning was very hectic for us since we had a noon flight out of miami. I went to guest services to leave an extra tip for our wait staff and i stood on line for an hour! That made me delayed getting off the ship and I hit the rush getting through customs. I was trying to be patient because again, thousands of people get off the ship so it will take time. Just plan ahead of time going to guest services or know you will be waiting in a long line!

Some random tips... - bring a water bottle, it saves time going back a million times with their little cups. and it is good to take water with you on port days. -entension cord for the room! between 3 peple's camera chargers, hair dryers and straighteners we needed it! - ziplock bags for port day snacks - tip your wait staff and other workers, they work very hard and appreciate it Less

Published 12/23/09

Cabin review: 4b

Port and Shore Excursions

It was unBELIZEable!!

We choose to book with Major Tom's Cave tubing ($51 included everything and a lunch). Our drivers and guides - Carlos, were hilarious and very entertaining and very knowledgeable! It was about a 30-40 minute drive to the caves. During the drive (in an air conditioned bus) Carlos told us all about the country and other interesting facts and tid-bits. When we got to the park, we got our tubes and hiked about 30 minutes (not a hard walk) to the start of the cave system. **Don't forget bug spray! Carlos pointed out different things in the jungle as we walked along. To get in the water you could jump off a rock (a lot of fun) or gently hop in the tube. You also had the choice to paddle/flat by yourself or to hook up with Carlos. I chose to be bymyself, and felt completely safe. The caves were amazing, and really beautiful. You won't see this anywhere else!

We chose to have the lunch- chicken rice and beans which was very good but was not much of a portion.

There were other tour groups there for the caves but Major Tom had a small group- no more than 20 people and we were really able to customize it.

In Cozumel, we opted to again do a private excursion. Since it was the last port, we were wiped out and wanted to relax on the beach. We joined up with about 15 other cruisecritic.com people and went to Mr. Sanchos beach. We had an all you can eat and drink special for $40!! It was great, the drinks were strong and the food was great mexican food. At Mr. Sanchos they gave us beach chairs and we had waiter service for drinks and food to the beach for us. They also have a pool and other snorkel and water activities that you can rent. We had a blast and it was great to have everything all inclusive. We left an hours or so before the ship left the port so we could so some shopping by the port- they have great jewelry that you can bargain for!

Read 5492 Cozumel Reviews

We took a cab to Sea Grape Beach ($5 each way) and it was best to get there early in the morning! We got one of the first few tenders off the ship so we beat the crowds! We rented chairs $6 and relaxed at the beach the whole day. There you can rent any water sport activity. They have a bar and restaurant which was great! The mahi mahi was delicious!! The water was soooo clear! We just sat in the sun, took walks, and swam the whole day. We went back a little early to walk around and shop. If you like to drink you HAVE to go to Margaritaville!! The drinks and food are great and there is a water slide IN THE BAR! lots of fun!!

We choose to book a private tour with Victor Bodden. We had a private driver for the day ($25 each)- Hano, who was great! We did South Shore Ziplining ($45) which we HIGHLY recommend! The guys were very helpful and the course was much longer than the Victor Bodden one- it was 13 different zips down the hillside. We then went to Victor's Monkey Business. It was one of the highlights of the trip! We got to hold parrots, pet deer and go in the howler monkey cage and feed and play with them. An all around amazing experience if you like animals! After the monkeys we went to West Bay Beach- we choose to go to the Mayan Princess Report beach- $10 for beach chairs, pool access, and bathrooms. Well worth it and it was beautiful!! The pool was goegeous and everything seemed very new. At the end of the day on the way back to the ship we went through the main town on the island. For me this was my favortie stop on the trip. It is a third world country so people from the US might not be confortable with it if you expect high class traveling. The homes are run down, and the people are often not wearing shoes. It is a poor country but that is their way of life. If you like to experience pure culture and really see a naturally beautiful island, this is you place! I want to go back and spend just a week exploring the island of Roatan and relax in the beauty of it.

Read 2447 Roatan Reviews

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