Pleasant Dreams for New Years: Carnival Dream Cruise Review by dcmarianne

Carnival Dream 5
Member Since 2004
55 Forum Posts

Overall Member Rating

Pleasant Dreams for New Years

Sail Date: December 2009
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
I didn't take extensive notes so this isn't a blow-by-blow review. I just want to add my positive remarks and reassure folks who are yet to board the Dream!

This was our second Carnival cruise (sailed the Liberty in 2008) and much about the Dream was familiar (cabins, ship layout) and pleasing. Our cabin (mid-ship) was plenty roomy for the four of us (two adults and two teenage boys), although we are neat by nature! Two closets for hanging and one with shelves, plus drawers in the dressing area and under one bed. We stored our suitcases under the large bed. I'm perfectly satisfied with the shower gel and shampoo provided by Carnival, so that saves space in the shower. The robes are comfy!

For whatever reason, we did not feel crowded. Maybe living in the DC Metro area desensitizes us to crowds! We mostly used the stairs, but elevators were always available. The Mongolian Wok and Pasta Bar require a wait because the meals are made-to-order. Strike up a chat with the More cruiser in front or behind of you . . . smile! Avoid crowds by taking advantage of the brunch on sea days -- it is fabulous and relaxing -- don't miss it! Go to the Lido early or late during meal times and walk right up to the buffet lines. We found the tables to be cleared immediately and never had to wait to sit. We were able to find seats in the theater by arriving 20 minutes before a performance (we usually went to the later show -- might make a difference). We went to the first R-rated comedy shows for easier seating.

Any-time seating: We waited awhile the first night, but never after that (party of nine on most nights) and we were able to get our first choice wait-team (headed by Kenroy) three times. I'm not enamored of the wait-staff floor show, so I actually liked not having to watch! Different strokes! I'm glad Carnival offers this option.

The adult deck space, Serenity, is niiiiice! We were happy to give up going ashore in Belize to enjoy the time on deck. I smelled a bit of icky smell a couple of times, out on deck, but can't remember exactly where and it didn't bother me. Walking all the way around Deck 5 (the Lanai) is wonderful!! The hot tubs on this level appeared to be uncrowded most of the time.

The staff is working HARD to iron out the new-ship wrinkles. Upcoming cruisers should reap the benefits. But do remember that you are cruising with 4399 other people; there are lots of smaller ships if that is too densely populated for you! Less

Published 01/08/10
1 Helpful Vote

Cabin review: 8A6294 Balcony

Quiet. Mid-ship (no rattling/shuddering). Just above Lanai. Close to elevators. Opposite of ports (sea-side). Plenty of room for four.

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Port and Shore Excursions

My husband and son visited Majuhual for massages and were very happy with the experience. They rode a shuttle bus to ($3 each) and from ($2 each) town and the massages were $20 (45 minutes) and $10 (20 minutes). I shopped at the pier area and had a very pleasant (!) bargaining experience with one of the independent vendors.

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We took a Carnival excursion to Tulum. Because of the transfers needed via ferry and then bus, I highly recommend going with Carnival if you are leaving Cozumel-proper. We enjoyed the tour and felt that going ship-sponsored was worth the cost to not have to worry about getting back "in-time."

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We took a zip-line/beach combo tour with Island Marketing. To meet these independent tour operators, you have to walk all the way through the shopping area, then through the parking/bus lot for "approved" vendors and up and over a hill. It takes about 10 minutes total as I recall. The zip-line is South Shore Canopy near West Bay. Woo Hoo - Awesome!! 13 zips and some of them are looooong and fast! All of us (10 years old to mid-40s, including one chemo patient) had a blast. The beach (Fosters West Bay resort) was a disappointment, but maybe we didn't give it enough time; we left quickly when it started to rain. We thought the beach area was very small and overcrowded. We didn't visit the shops or beach (or brand-new chair lift) at Mahogany Bay but it looks beautiful and quite extensive.

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Member Since 2004
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