We couldn't of asked for a more perfect vacation. Being first time cruisers we had no idea what to expect. We sailed out of Tampa, the check-in process in Tampa was very smooth.
Traveling with 3 teenagers we made a point when we got on the ship, we took time to explore and to get to know the ship. We wanted to make sure all the kids got familiar how to find where you were. We also paid the $5 each to be able to send messages through the Carnival HUB. It was well worth the $5 to use that feature. We used the Carnival HUB app all the time to look at the "What's Going On" feature also.
Some of the things we loved about the ship; the two new restaurant's Guy's Burger and the Cantina. The food was awesome and there usually wasn't a long line because they were very fast at servicing the guests. The Cruise Director Jaime was very upbeat and kept everything entertaining. We loved the nightly shows, especially the 80's rock show. The kids loved the mini-golf, Karaoke and all the activities they had on the pool deck.
Things we didn't like, which wasn't a lot. We weren't fond of the comedian on-board. We actually left shortly after he started. We didn't think he was very funny. The pool gets crowded but we made sure we got up in time to get a good spot to sun bathe. Also, the elevator's took forever. We chose the stairs a lot, so we definitely got our steps in.
Like I said previously, we sailed with 3 teenagers. We booked an inside state room. I was nervous about booking just one room but other's told me that you are never in your room. Well I'm glad I took that advise. The room wasn't that big but we had plenty of room. There was one queen size bed with a bunk above and then a smaller bed at the end of the queen with another bunk. We made it work and were happy with our decision.
We sailed to Grand Cayman and Cozumel. We loved Grand Cayman. We did the snorkeling with sting rays excursion. It was a blast. We booked with a private company and they were great. They also took us snorkeling and to dive for starfish. We were not a fan of Cozumel. We booked an all-inclusive day at a resort. It cost $25 by taxi to get to the resort and when we got there the resort really wasn't what it was hyped up to be. Everything cost extra. When we went to leave we were going to share a taxi with another group. They charged us double because we had more people. We did some shopping or should I say tried. We were getting pulled in every directions by the locals. I didn't like that especially when I had three teenagers that got nervous when people were trying to get us in their shops.
Final note, even though the Paradise is an older ship for first time cruisers we couldn't tell. We had a great time and it was well worth the money. We would cruise again on the Paradise and/or another Carnival ship. Food was good, staff was great and our experience was unforgettable.
We had 5 people, that includes 3 teenagers and it was comfortable if you are in the room to sleep only.
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