We chose this cruise on Carnival Radiance a few weeks in advance due to cost. We’d taken two Mexican west coast cruises on Carnival before under similar circumstances on two of the old Fantasy class ships before COVID and had been pleasantly surprised both times. Sadly that didn’t carry over to their larger and newer sister. Radiance first and foremost has way too many people on board for her amenities. Other than a couple of nondescript doors leading to the flying bridge and Decks 6/7 forward, there isn’t a quiet place on the ship. And on sea days it’s like being in a subway station at rush hour in every public space. Same carried over to the tendered port day in Catalina. Took almost 2 hours to get a tender back to the ship (took them that long to clear the queue when it came time to set sail that we left late too.
Which gets to the second problem, the clientele. I’ve taken multiple cruises on Carnival, Norwegian, Princess and Holland and I’ve never been on a boat with as many rude and downright inconsiderate folks as the Radiance. From little things like cutting in lines (of which there are far too many), cheating at trivia, leaving food and trash in hallways, to big things like drunkenly swearing and fighting around the ship to teens running around the passenger decks close to curfew.
Which gets to my third issue, the kids clubs… suck. Both of my littles were in the young and intermediate rooms and had similar reports, they were boring and there were rude kids pushing and hitting them and others.
Catalina was a gem of a port. We had a lovely lunch by the water, visited a history museum featuring the history of Tiki on the island, and some mini golf. It was so nice in fact I wish we’d just ferried to the island and skipped the cruise.