288 Port Canaveral (Orlando) to Caribbean - Eastern Carnival Glory Cruise Reviews

This was only our second cruise, having gone to the Western Caribbean before on a Royal Caribbean cruise in 2001 on the Nordic Empress. We found the Carnival Glory cruise to be very good and slightly better than our experience with Royal ... Read More
This was only our second cruise, having gone to the Western Caribbean before on a Royal Caribbean cruise in 2001 on the Nordic Empress. We found the Carnival Glory cruise to be very good and slightly better than our experience with Royal Caribbean. We are Midwestern, professional, no kids, and in our late 30s. I eat a pescatarian diet, meaning I eat no meat, eggs, or dairy, but I'll eat seafood. My husband will eat anything. Fortunately, the cruise dining staff was eager to accommodate my diet. I told our main waiter the first night and he had someone come over every night to help me pre-order my meal for the next night, making adjustments like using soymilk in a mushroom soup, making lasagna without the cheese, etc. She was very nice and helpful in suggesting options in preparing the food listed in their menu. Also, per her suggestion, I asked the buffet staff on the lido deck at breakfast for a cup of soymilk. It's not sitting out, but they will get it for you. I did wish there were a few more bean options without cheese or more soy-based faux meats and more whole grains, but all in all, I was pleased with the food selections. I would suggest bringing a few protein bars and whole grain crackers if you are vegetarian/vegan. The Emerald Room Supper Club had wonderful food and service, among the best we've ever had, so consider paying the $30 upcharge per person to treat yourself and that quiet, romantic restaurant. I got the sole and it was a work of art and a delicious blend of flavors. Let me tell you -- there is no end to the temptation to eat more than you are actually hungry for (like dessert every night) so you want to find active things to do. Their gym was quite decent, and what's better than looking at the ocean as you run on the treadmill or lift weights! They have Life Fitness equipment, ellipticals, bikes, steps, mats, and free weights. They offered Spinning, Yoga or Pilates classes for $12/each or $10 in a 3-pack. I passed on those, wondering how you'd hold a tree pose on the swaying ship. They also offered free fun half-hour classes in hip hop, disco, line dancing and the Thriller Dance. Those were fun and easy, not a workout, though. They do have a jogging track on the open upper deck, but it was too windy when the ship is moving. There are plenty of places to walk on the ship and taking the stairs is a good option. I actually found it fun to do some cardio, core and strength exercises in the small pool (all are saltwater). Bring your webbed gloves for resistance! It was quite awesome to workout in the pool in that setting. It was also fun to dance in the White Heat Disco Club, in which the DJ played cool, modern, dance club music. Even after all that eating and activity, there's still plenty of time for rest and relaxation. The shows were great, particularly the Illusion one (even if you think it will be dumb, go, you'll like it.) A cruise, particularly the Carnival Glory cruise, is a delight for all the senses! Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
This was our first cruise ever and it was far more wonderful than I ever expected. Prior to our cruise I read many reviews that had many negative things to say about Glory and Carnival. Let me first say that I have no other cruise to ... Read More
This was our first cruise ever and it was far more wonderful than I ever expected. Prior to our cruise I read many reviews that had many negative things to say about Glory and Carnival. Let me first say that I have no other cruise to compare this one with but if there were any better then more power to them. Embarkation- We arrived at Port Canaveral and unloaded our luggage and was assisted by their baggage guy. The check in process went smooth and in no time we were on the Glory. We went to the Lido (food)deck and had lunch. The cheeseburgers were great. The buffet had many selections and they were good. We then went to our cabin on the lower floor Rivera deck. Cabin- the cabin we stayed in was larger than I expected. The room had a safe for us to store our valuables while we were not in our room. Our luggage arrived soon after we did and was all in one piece. Our room steward was very courteous and he kept our room immaculate. My win.k. They cleaned the shower heads everyday and changed the shower curtains. He would make our daughter a different animal with the towels every night before we got back in. It was almost spooky the way they would know when to clean your room when we were out. Never once did he knock to see if we were there while we were in the room. Food- Absolutely magnificent. I am amazed at all of the negative reviews the food receives. We were very pleased. There were some items on the Lido buffet that we did not care for but there was always plenty of variety to chose from. The cheeseburgers were very good and so was the pizza. The deserts were plenty and very tasty. The main dining room, Golden for us, served very good dishes and you can order as much as you want. We would get two appetizers with every meal since the serving sizes were small. But honestly, we were never hungry since we ate buffet for breakfast and lunch. The chocolate melting cake that everyone raves over was like uncooked cake batter and was too rich. You need a pint of milk to go with it. It was good though. Entertainment- There was a different show in the main palace each night and they were good. The magic show was very good as were the Glory dancers. The comedy shows were good and some were not, depending on the comedian. Excursions- Nassau- You might as well stay on the boat. This third world country was sad and pitiful looking. I would scrap this stop. St Thomas was good and St Martin was very good. We went on a snorkeling excursion on the catamaran Eagle. We snorkeled and had time on a beach that had some naked girls. That is right, they sunbathe naked there. The Glory is due to move to Miami and is to be replaced with the larger and newer Dream. I cannot wait until next year to do this again. Cruising will be the way we vacation from now on instead of wasting time and money going to Myrtle beach. For the money you cannot beat the value. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
My wife and I celebrated our 10th anniversary on the Carnival Glory.  This was our first time on Carnival; we have previously sailed on the Disney Magic (three times for the 3 day cruise), HAL Veendam, NCL Spirit (Alaska), NCL Pearl, NCL ... Read More
My wife and I celebrated our 10th anniversary on the Carnival Glory.  This was our first time on Carnival; we have previously sailed on the Disney Magic (three times for the 3 day cruise), HAL Veendam, NCL Spirit (Alaska), NCL Pearl, NCL Sky (3 day), RCCL Mariner of the Seas, and the Caribbean Princess.   Our house is 65 miles from the port. We arrived at Port Canaveral just after noon, and it took only about 15 minutes to unload and park; however, it took 40 minutes after getting in line to get to the counter.  After boarding, we went to eat, and could not find an indoor table, so had to eat outside in the heat.  My wife looked at the buffet line and found nothing appealing, so we ate from the grill.   The mandatory drill was supposed to begin at approximately 3:30, but was much later than that.  Carnival said to wait for announcements, but since my wife is recovering from a sprained ankle, we did not want to have to walk down several flights of stairs.  We were not released from the drill until around 4:30.   The balcony stateroom was very nice, and had just enough storage room for us.  The bathroom was roomy, and the plumbing worked well.  Our room was very quiet.  "Risky" did a great job on our stateroom.   Service in the main dining room was excellent.  We ate there for six nights.  The food was mostly adequate, with less courses than any other cruise line we had been on.  Desserts were passable.  Unlike other cruise lines, a basket of bread was not provided on the table, but waiters occasionally stopped by to see if we wanted a roll or bread.  The bread choices were the same every day.  On NCL, they had several varieties that changed daily.   Entertainment was not so great,  There was a juggler one night and a singer one night that were good, but the dancers/singers from Carnival were not too good. The magic show was repetitive - how many different types of box can you make people disappear from? I was disappointed that they did not have a crew or guest talent show. This was the first cruise where the four major TV networks were available. They utilized the network affiliates in Denver. This was also the week of the blizzard there. The only major complaint we had was with the supper club, which cost us $60 extra.  I asked for a lemonade, which is free in all other dining rooms, and they wanted to charge me, so I requested an iced tea instead, which they brought without any sweeteners.  I had to request that separately.  The waitress had problems answering a simple question, and gave the excuse that she was just out of college.  We were told that the fillet was came with asparagus and mushrooms; I requested mine to come with nothing, and my wife wanted mushrooms only.  My order was correct, hers came with no mushrooms but with asparagus.  For sides, I ordered spinach and mashed potatoes, and they served me tiny portions of them on the plate.  No refills were offered for my tea until we ordered dessert, and my wife almost had to beg to get refills on her soda.  It took 30 minutes for dessert to be served.  After I paid, I requested to speak to the manager; she asked what I wanted her to do about the situation but did not offer any specific compensation.  The fillet was excellent, and the tiny portions of the sides was too. We have eaten in the steakhouses and alternative dining on all other cruises (except HAL, which did not have the alternative dining yet), and with one exception on Disney, always had great service.  Disney gave us our meal free after I complained about the waiter who brought what he thought we should have instead of what we wanted to order.   We had stops in Nassau, St. Thomas, and St. Martin. We had been to each at least two times previously. The only excursion that we took was a St. Martin island tour, which provided transportation to the French side so that my wife could shop the flea market there. The driver was excellent, giving a different narration than we had previously on this tour. Getting of the ship was easy, we got to our car by 9 AM. I would sail Carnival again, but only if the price and itinerary were exceptional, but I would never eat in their supper club again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
We have traveled before on Carnival. This was our first trip to eastern Caribbean. Embarkation went smooth. The food and waiter in the Platinum Dining Room was very good. We ate there six nights. The buffet on the Lido deck left a lot ... Read More
We have traveled before on Carnival. This was our first trip to eastern Caribbean. Embarkation went smooth. The food and waiter in the Platinum Dining Room was very good. We ate there six nights. The buffet on the Lido deck left a lot to be desired. The breakfast buffet was not very good at all. The eggs were soupy and runny and you had to ask for the bacon. They would only give you a limited amount. We are both allergic to cigarette smoke. We like to slow dance and every bar we went into where we could dance was smoking. The karaoke bar was supposed to be smoke free, but it wasn't at all and there was no one monitoring to make sure there was no one smoking. Everywhere you went on the ship you could smell cigarette smoke. We had a balcony room and the room next to us was smoking and they would smoke on their balcony and we would have to go back inside. Also, people continually slammed the doors on the balcony both during the date and all night. Our steward was very friendly and the crew was always smiling. We will not cruise on the Carnival Glory again. Our previous cruises on the Conquest were very good. We will certainly check out the smoking situation before cruising again. Also, we both had a massage at the spa on the ship and it was wonderful, very relaxing and reasonble.The balcony cabin was fine. There was plenty of storage room. The only complaint about the balcony room was the noise. For some reason, people thought you had to slam the doors from the room to the balcony. They would wake us up all during the night slamming the doors. I think they need to separate the smoking rooms from nonsmoking rooms. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
We are mainly RCCL cruisers and are just below diamond status. Needing a quick getaway and not finding what we wanted { by date } with our usual line we decided to try Carnival. Booked everything on line { another first} We drove to the ... Read More
We are mainly RCCL cruisers and are just below diamond status. Needing a quick getaway and not finding what we wanted { by date } with our usual line we decided to try Carnival. Booked everything on line { another first} We drove to the cruise port and stayed at the Country Inn and Suites quite close to the cruise terminal. We were shuttled to the terminal and left our car at the hotel. { we were given a ticket for the return shuttle and advised to call when we had cleared customs}. We found embarkation to be smoothly run arriving around 11:30am and were aboard by 12:30. We found our way to the red sail restaurant, found a seat and had a coffee and light snack. We did find the glory a difficult ship to negotiate because one needs to go up or down one floor to access certain areas of the ship. I did miss not being able to walk from one end to another unimpeded but that is not a complaint. We had been wait listed for first seating because we find second seating too late for our routine. We were lucky enough to be changed and we were sad to leave our two dinner companions who also had requested first seating, they ended up staying on second seating and they were alone at a table for 8. We joined our new dinner companions on the second night they too were seated at a table for 8 and for the whole of the week just the four of us turned up for dinner. Our wait staff were top class. Food. Good choices { I will not compare anything to RCCL} because it is subjective and unfair, suffice to say we were happy with the offerings and enjoyed all our meals. we do not eat lunch and so visited the red sales restaurant only on boarding. we ate breakfast each morning in the MDR and were very satisfied. Cabin We always travel in inside cabins and found ours to be slightly more spacious than we are used to. Our cabin steward IGEDE was the best ever and I certainly appreciated his towel animals and his thoughtfulness. A very pleasant hard working young man. Entertainment. Enjoyed the shows, trivia, comedy shows. The sing a long piano bar with Russel was one of our favourite stops, Karaoke, { as spectators} oldies with Robbin, Latin Music, all in all lots to choose from. The entertainment staff were the best we have ever encountered. We did not take this cruise for its ports we did go ashore in St Thomas and St Martin but decided to stay aboard in Nassau. The Glory is certainly a beautiful ship, staffed with friendly and helpful staff. Embarkation and disembarkation was well managed. We opted for self assisted disembarking and there were no line ups we were off the ship by 8am and shuttled to our car within that hour. Excellent fun cruise. Oh forgot to say we are seniors. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
Had done Disney twice, RC and Norwegian once each and all were great. Just didn't want to do Carnival due to their adds and rumors of constant partying. But got a good rate and this fit all of our needs so decided to give it a try. ... Read More
Had done Disney twice, RC and Norwegian once each and all were great. Just didn't want to do Carnival due to their adds and rumors of constant partying. But got a good rate and this fit all of our needs so decided to give it a try. Went in with zero expectations. Truthfully, I was expecting to be terribly disappointed. And it turned out to be just fine and I would do Carnival again! And believe me I am somewhat picky. It started kind of badly as I thought the crew that we met on day 1 didn't seem very happy. But when we saw our cabin that's when I got my first surprise. It was huge! Had an ocean view on Deck 1 and this cabin is appx. 220 sq. ft. Much more than any other cruise line I had been on. We actually could move around and not bump into each other! And after Day 1 the crew got happier. My husband said maybe it was Embarkation Day blues and shift changes. This cruise had 3 days at sea that I worried about being bored but it turned out we enjoyed and needed these days for rest and relaxation. It's not necessarily good to be in a port every single day trying to do it all. That can be exhausting! I have done it and will probably do it again, but this time it was OK. I don't really want to spend a lot of time here talking about the port stops because Nassau, St. Thomas and St. Maarten have been thoroughly dissected on this website. What I wanted to say in this review was how pleasantly surprised I was with Carnival Cruise Line. The crew was great. The food was fantastic! I was not expecting that at all. The dining room food was excellent and I have the extra 6 lbs to prove it. The room steward kept our cabin stocked and clean constantly. Once the toilets stopped working on our deck and it was fixed within about an hour. It seemed if anything wasn't working that it was taken care of instantly. I can say that was not the case on RC. On RC I remember some of the public toilets not working and some overflowing and they stayed that way for days. The other thing about Carnival is they really want everyone to have a good time, so there are activities going on all the time. If you get bored it is your own fault. The lounge shows were excellent. On RC they were laughably sad. The show called Justin Illusion was awesome. We didn't want to go at first because we were like "oh great another magician". But we decided to go and were blown away! I'm so glad we decided to go! Oh and the "extra fee" fancy dining experience in the Emerald Room was just over the top fantastic. The best piece of Filet Mignon we've ever had. And the service and all the food was awesome. I give one point off to Carnival for the individual entertainment acts in the various bars and lounges. Some of these people sang so off key and badly we had to cover our ears when we walked by! But the piano bar experience is another cool thing we did. This guy "Russell" plays the piano very well and has an extensive song collection that he can play. Everyone sits around him as he and his piano slowly rotates and sing along. It is a riot if you get the right bunch of people together. It is hysterical to hear standard classic rock songs sung with a Phillipino accent! Cute! I must include here my review of the ship Glory also. I did not like this ship very much. I thought it was laid out badly and didn't like the pools. But let's face it, a cruise is mostly about the food and the ports, right? I will say on sea days it was very easy to find a spot on deck to hang out because of the Carnival towel policy. They charge you $22 per towel if you don't turn in your towel at the end of the cruise. This prevents people from "chair hogging" with towels because they are afraid of losing their towel! How nice this was in comparison to my other cruising experiences where people "marked" their chairs from 7am to midnight with towels. This made it very difficult to find a good spot for a little while during sea days. So YEA Carnival for your towel policy, it works and it's fair! Note: if you have the suitcase room, bring your own towel from home. We didn't even "unpack" the Carnival towels in the room. There's only one electrical outlet in the cabin. This seems to be on all cruise ships. Bring a multi-outlet converter if you need more than one outlet. Let an ex-smoker vent here too please. I am appalled at the number of people who still smoke knowing the dangers we are now aware of. There were so many on this ship I couldn't believe it!! But they do have their places on the ship where they can smoke, but it makes the casino sometimes unbearable. It would be so nice if there was half of the casino smoke-free, or perhaps a much better ventilation system installed?? So in closing I want those of you who are afraid of Carnival to go ahead and book with confidence. I will do them again. By the way, I am in my early 50's and enjoy a good time but also like my 8 hours a night of sleep. I got both on this cruise. The beds are good and the cabins were so quiet I wondered if we were alone! Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
My wife and I are in our 20's and this was the 7th cruise for us on Carival and the Glory was the 4th Carnival boat we have been on. I want to start off by saying that we booked this cruise the day after we got off the boat in May ... Read More
My wife and I are in our 20's and this was the 7th cruise for us on Carival and the Glory was the 4th Carnival boat we have been on. I want to start off by saying that we booked this cruise the day after we got off the boat in May 2009, prior to hunting season dates beign published. I was very much looking forward to this trip until I realized that I wa going to be missing 2 weekends of hunting season. Furthermore, I read several reviews with bad thins to say about the poor condition of the Glory and their negative thoughts of the crew. As far as that goes, all I can say is when you have a boat of that size, there are always going to be MORONS in the crowd. This boat is in good shape and the crew was magnificant. We were nervous about these, but were pleasantly suprised. I will leave it at that. We drove down from Alabama the night prior to the cruise and stayed in the Orlando Airport Marriott--we got a steal on Priceline. I would do it again. It sonly about a 30 minute driveto the cruise terminal. As for the ship, it was the largest boat we have been on. It was very clean, was always being cleaned, in nice shape, and there was plenty to do. I think I say this every time, but the service itself and the friendliness of those serving were better than any other cruise we have been on. We enjoyed all of our dining staff and stateroom staff. The crew is the reason we continue to cruise Carnival. There are plenty of activities around the clock, most of which we didn't particpate in. My wife enjoyed the shows while I was in the sports bar watching football. The Comedy Club is also pretty good. As for the Ports: Let me start off by saying...DO NOT BY ALCOHOL ON THE BOAT. I have included under the ports where the best booze deals are. If you buy in St. Thomas you can bring back 5 Liters per person instead of 1. I carried a price list from my local store, the ships price list(which the selection was limited) and compared them to the stores in port-the port stores won every time. THe boat also offers a price match guarantee, that they wouldnt match for me after we left our last port. Embakation was very painless and very uneventful. We were late getting back into Pt. Canaveral, so we got off the bot a little late. It wasn't Carnival's fault. They made an announcement around midnight that there was a vessel in distress, which the officers found and rescued. That ordeal took about 4 hours so one hour late getting off is nothing to complain about. Dining was what we expected Lido deck food was good and choices there include: chinese food, sandwich shop, fish and chips, several buffet lines, grille, pizza, and ice cream. The dining room food was good as usual and the service was excellent. We also ate in the supper club and that was worth the $30 per person--EXCELLENT meal. To conclude, we will be back on Carnival, yet again. We liked the itenerary so much we are going to cruise it again on the Dream in April. Have fun and don't let the few ignorant ones with negative posts get you down. You have a LOT to look forward to. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
We just sailed the Glory from 10/9-10/17/09. This was our 3rd cruise and quite possibly the last with Carnival. Unfortunately, I don't have very many positive things to say. We embarked in Port Canaveral and that did go fairly well, ... Read More
We just sailed the Glory from 10/9-10/17/09. This was our 3rd cruise and quite possibly the last with Carnival. Unfortunately, I don't have very many positive things to say. We embarked in Port Canaveral and that did go fairly well, almost. In all the excitement of checking in and getting our Sail & Sign Card, we failed to notice that the 2 other family members we were traveling with had been assigned to the Golden Dining Room and we had been assigned to the Platinum. We were able to get that corrected once going to the dining room on board. I advise all to pay attention to that.Once on board we went to the Lido Deck Buffet to grab a bite while we waited for our rooms to be ready and luggage to be delivered.There was always a shortage of trays.I am a huge coffee drinker and I thought the coffee was absolutely horrible. It tasted like they used 1 coffee bean to make it and the iced tea they offer is so weak I can't believe they are allowed to call it tea.Our luggage was delivered at different times piece by piece, but thankfully it did arrive. Two fellow passengers didn't get their luggage at all. Carnival sent a flyer to everyone's room with a description of the missing luggage and list of the contents. I don't know if it ever turned up.The bed configuration in one of our rooms was not as requested and the family ended up doing it themselves as the steward was MIA. We had balcony rooms on the Emerald Deck.The table in our room was all beat up and their were pen marks on the sofa. The curtains were torn. The shower curtain was missing hooks. The bed and pillows were very comfortable. The duvet was great. We did think the rooms got somewhat warm throughout the night. The balcony itself is very small and narrow and you had to turn your chair sideways in order to stretch out your legs. The glass on the balcony was filthy as well. We had a room next to our family members and we were able to get the door between them opened otherwise 2 people would barely be able too move around each other out there.I did not realize that the door to the balcony opened out unlike our last cruise on the Ruby Princess which was a sliding glass door. I didn't mind this at first but once we set sail, all you heard the entire trip was other passengers slamming their balcony doors constantly.Not to mention if people were walking by or standing in the hallway, you could hear every word they said. I found the rooms to be very noisy. You were never able to sit and enjoy any quiet time on your balcony. The entertainment in the bars/lounges was scarce day or night. When you were lucky enough to find some, it was pretty pitiful. Thank God, we did find one band called SoulDrive and they were good. They have an amazing guitar player. We felt there are not enough activites offered onboard. Your choices were either the casino or games on the Lido deck. Not alot going on on this ship in my opinion. The art auctions are a joke and I can't believe people actually fall for this stuff.We did not travel with children so I can not comment on Camp Carnival. We did catch a show in the Amber Palace with Carnival's singers and dancers and that was really good.Overall though,the entertainment could stand some improvement. The service in the dining room was excellent. Our team was Rolando and Irena. She was just delightful. A darling girl from Russia that you just wanted to take home with you. Rolando can make little jumping frogs out of a dollar bill. Very cute. They worked very hard and were great together.The food was good and it is true what has been said about the Chocolate Melting Cake. The whole dining experience takes about 2-2 1/2 hours and on two nights we opted out. We ate at the buffet and the food was just okay. A few of the things tasted the same as everything else. The Caesar salad always had an odd fishy taste from the dressing. I was not the only one who thought that. For breakfast in the buffet, the scrambled eggs were always wet and runny. You served yourself for most items except when it came to the bacon or sausage. A crew member was standing there holding the tongs for those items and most of the time they were not paying attention to you. Not a fun way to start out your day. Room service was always prompt to our room but not to our family's room next to us. The condition of the carafe's and trays used was shoddy to say the least.They we always very badly chipped, beat up, mis-matched,discolored and the carafe's never kept the crappy coffee hot. We were invited to a Past Guest Party where they offered free champagne and hors d'oeuvres that were quite tasty.They had a small presentation showing all of Carnival's ships and the Cruise Director hosted a trivia game. But the last straw was one night after having a nice dinner we went to the Ivory Lounge, sat down and ordered a round of drinks. We were sitting and just chatting about our day.Halfway through our drinks, a security guard came over and said "You have to get out now." We were stunned! When we asked why, he said. "We are having a crew party and you have to leave." How RUDE!! While I know all the crew and staff work very hard and I don't begrudge them their party time, I was highly insulted and offended at the way it was handled. There were no signs posted that the lounge would be off limits nor was anything posted in the daily Carnival Caper that their was going to be a private event held in the lounge. I'm still extremely angry about that incident. The next day I went to Guest Services to complain about how we were treated and they could have cared less. I suggested several ways that they could have handled it without calling Security to remove us. Guest Services just blew us off.I'll be angry for months over that! The Glory deck plan is not user friendly. You couldn't travel around the entire ship on many decks. I really hated the layout. We used a self service laundry room on a sea day and it cost $3.00 for a washer and $3.00 for a dryer and $1.00 for soap. It had 3 washers (1 was out of service) and 6 stacked dryers. Overall, I found the Glory dirty in several areas and worn in many others. People have even carved things in the chrome inside the elevator doors. There's small tiles missing from the floors in the elevators. I know there are other things I am sure I am leaving out. We tried to make the best of it but all I can say is I was very disappointed and will have to be offered one hell of a deal or itinerary before I sail with Carnival again. I think they could learn alot from the way Princess does things. My only fear is now they are owned by the same company! Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
This is my husband and my fourth cruise and our two daughters (ages 12 & 10) third....all with Carnival. We decided to leave the evening before the cruise to avoid the hassle the day of. Our flight left Milwaukee around 5:15pm and ... Read More
This is my husband and my fourth cruise and our two daughters (ages 12 & 10) third....all with Carnival. We decided to leave the evening before the cruise to avoid the hassle the day of. Our flight left Milwaukee around 5:15pm and with a layover in Atlanta, we arrived in Orlando at 11:00pm. We rented a car and drove less than 10 minutes to stay at the Quality Inn Airport Hotel. It was nice and convenient seeing we arriving so late. The hotel offered a large contential breakfast. We left around 9:00am to head to the port. We made a stop to purchase two 12 packs of soda and for gas before arriving at the car rental return. Avis shuttled us over to the port. We were in line to check in by 10:45am. There were a lot of people ahead of us already checked in. Check in went smooth and by 11:15am we were sitting waiting for our number to be called. By 11:45am we were on the Lido deck eating lunch. Our other cruises were on the Fascination (2 times) and the Imagination. So this was the biggest ship we have been on. We also decided to upgrade to a balcony room. What a treat! My husband loves to read and really enjoyed sitting on the balcony with a good book! We had a king bed, the couch that converts to a bed and an upper bunk. The room has lots of storage but with four in the room, it can be a little cramped. ...but who spends a lot of time in their room! The bathroom had a lot of shelving which came in handy. Our room was on the Panorama deck (deck 10), room 1060. It was perfect! We just had to walk four rooms down, go out the door and we were on the upper part of the Lido deck. Close to everything. We were two levels below Camp Carnival and one deck below the Spa and fitness center. Very handy. We made the comment many times how we LOVED the location of our room! Our room stuart was okay. He never asked our names, but always greeted us with a "hello" and a smile. Our room was always clean and we had a towel animal waiting for us every night. The day we arrived we asked him to take everything out of the refrigerator. He refused to empty it out. He said that everything must stay in or we would get charged. We brought some of our own soda along and there wasn't even enough room for one can. So we took everything out and put it in the cabinet next to the fridge. On Friday afternoon, we put everything back in before we would get charged. It would have been nice having an extra cabinet for our things....but we obviously did not let this ruin any of our vacation! CAMP CARNIVAL / CIRCLE C Our youngest daughter (10 yrs) enjoyed going to Camp Carnival. It was nice that she could check herself in and out. They had many activities to keep her busy. Our oldest daughter (12 yrs) LOVED Circle C. She was with her friends most of the day. We made her check in with us every couple of hours and eat dinner with us each night. Most of the nights, they had activities until 12:30/1:30am. BAHAMAS Found a tour once we were off the ship. We toured the countryside, the ocean and the Atlantis Hotel. We made a stop to do some shopping too. The whole tour was almost 2-1/2 hours and we got it for $20.00 each. ST. THOMAS We went snuba diving. This was our second time doing this and absolutely loved it! For those who don't know what snuba is, it is like scuba diving, but you don't have your own tank. You have an air hose that is connected to a tank that is on a raft. Four to six people go at the same time and share the tank. When you swim, you pull the raft along. You can go down approximately 20 feet. They fed the fish, so there were fish everywhere! ST. MAARTEN We did the helmet dive. This was really cool. You just breathed normally. You can even talk, but no one can hear you but yourself. My husband liked this because he wears prescription glasses and could keep them on. FOOD We ate breakfast on the Lido deck/Red Sail Restaurant every morning. Pretty much the same things....scrambled eggs, some kind of a potato, sausages, bacon, toast, bagels, pancakes, omelets, cereal, etc. Lunch we would eat in the Red Sail. My husband really enjoyed the salads and the themed buffets each day. The lines were never long. My only complaint was the food was usually just warm, not hot. It was good though overall. We ate in the dining room every night. Our head waiter Iwayan and assistant waiter Rai were awesome! The best we have ever had! The service was excellent along with their personalities. One night, they both showed my daughter how to make things out of the napkins. She loved it. The food was very good every night. SHOWS / COMEDY SHOWS We went to all the shows. They were all good especially the magic show. He was excellent! We went to one of the early comedy shows. I don't remember his name but he was excellent! My 10 year old was laughing so hard, she was crying! We enjoyed it so much, we went another night. What a disappointment! He was not funny at all. Seeing we were sitting right next to the door, we got up and left early. SPA We went to check out the fitness center the first day on the ship. It was awesome! We registered to win some spa treatments. We had to be present to win. I won a 25 minute Hot Stone Massage! I never win anything so I was extremely surprised! I had my massage on Monday morning (1st day at sea) and loved it so much that I booked a 75 minute massage for Thursday morning. It was the best I've ever had! POOLS The pools were nice and were never packed. As far as children go, it honestly felt like there was none on board. One lady who sat beside me during a show said that one of the crew members told her that there were over 400 children on board. She asked them "where are they all?" I never saw any children misbehaving, jumping or splashing in the pool, etc. Great manners by all. DISEMBARKMENT We chose to carry off our luggage. The schedule had the Spa deck departing at 7:30am and then our deck, the Panorama deck at 7:40am. We were instructed to stay until they announced our deck. When they announced the Spa deck, we headed to the elevators and planned on waiting for them to call ours. We noticed that the elevators kept stopping at lower decks (obviously people were not following directions). So at 7:50am we headed down. The whole time in line, we never heard them announce any decks at all. The line moved along and we were through customs, off the ship, shuttled by Budget to the car rental and in our car by 8:45am. I was impressed. It went extremely smooth. Overall, this was our favorite cruise. Part of it I'm sure has to do with our girls being a little older and having more freedom. The service and entertainment were great! We will definitely be cruising with Carnival again! Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
Let's start at the beginning. Arriving at the Port on a beautiful sunny day, parking was easy. Embarkation went smoothly, approximately 30 minutes until we were on board. Had lunch on the Lido deck, the Red Sail buffet food was so/so ... Read More
Let's start at the beginning. Arriving at the Port on a beautiful sunny day, parking was easy. Embarkation went smoothly, approximately 30 minutes until we were on board. Had lunch on the Lido deck, the Red Sail buffet food was so/so but the deli made me a tuna melt that was good. The grill on the Lido deck had good burgers & hotdogs that my husband liked. Our room was ready by 1:30, the room was listed as a handicapped room, the room itself was small but the bathroom was large. The closet was disappointing, very small! The bed was comfortable. The air conditioner did not work well at first but did eventually cool the room. This was our 3rd cruise with Carnival and the other rooms had nice size closets and cold AC. We definately won't book a handicapped room again. The staff was friendly, our dining room waiter was excellent as was our room steward. When ever you ask a question I found the staff to be very nice and helpful. You never had to seek out a crew memeber there was always someone near by. The adult only pool/spa area was NOT, it seems kids can run anywhere unsupervised which I find annoying. I am not anti kid but I think kids need to be with parents when in spas and pools. There are plenty of deck chairs and lounges. Someone is always asking if you want a drink, you don't have to go to the bar at all. There are several activities during the day. I would have liked to tour the kitchen cooking coarse but missed it. At night after dinner, bingo, shows, comedy club, casino, more food, karoke, disco, piano bar, etc.... you may eventually get a few hours sleep before you do it all again. In Nassau we took a taxi to Atlantis, walked around, gambled a little. It was beautiful and EXPENSIVE !!! My only complaint was that we did not have much time in Nassau before sailing off. We arrived around 9am and set sail at 2pm. Had a full day at sea where we enjoyed the Lido deck music, people watching, Jacuzzi, pool, etc... ST. Thomas was beautiful, we went on a Catamaran snorkling trip called "Castaway Girl Barefoot Sail & Snorkel to Shipwreck Cove". The walk from the ship to the catamaran was unbelievably long, many older guests were complaining for good reason. That said, the snorkling was great, saw beautiful fish. Getting back on was difficult as the crew did not lower the steps into the water and many people struggled to get on. My husband told them to lower the ladder because people were having difficulty getting up the steps which they finally did. Once back on board you could have all the rum punch you wanted, there was a bowl of pretzels but nothing else to eat. The crew pushed their T-shirts and kept saying how they depended on tips which I found tacky. Because of this and the fact that they showed no concern for people trying to get back on board I would not recommend that excursion. St. Maarten was even more beautiful. We took the "Golden Eagle" catamaran snorkle trip where there was a sunken boat, submarine, cannon and beautiful fish. Once back on board you could have rum punch, beer, mixed drinks, soda, and sandwiches. Then we sailed to a beach where everyone floated around with foam noodles, the crew were amazing & fun and showed great concern for their guests. They played fun music and engaged everyone in dancing, conga lines, YMCA, etc... it was a great time and definately worth checking out. When this trip was over many took water taxis to town to shop but we just walked around near the pier where I purchased T-shirts. I loved St. Maarten and would love to go back. The color of the water was just amazing, the grounds were spotless. My husband had the famous Bushwacker drink which he liked. 2 days at sea before returning home. It felt good to sleep in. The nightly shows and commedy club shows were excellent. It seems Carnival really tries to make sure everyone has a great time. Cons: - Unsupervised children, especially in pool areas. - Smoking, I would love to find a non-smoking cruise! - Red Sail buffet was disappointing, the deserts looked beautiful but did not taste good, the coffee was awful, the Chinese food was tasteless except for hot spice flavor. - Wish open seating was available for dinner. - Not enough time in ports to take an excursion and shop. Pros: - Great scenery, ports were beautiful, the water was amazing aqua color - Great shows & comedy club - Comfortable beds - Friendly people, both guests and crew   Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
My son, girlfriend, and DH and I drove to Dallas to catch our flight. Never again will I make a 4.5 hour drive to catch a flight. While we made the drive fine, none of us got any sleep the night before our flight due to our late arrival in ... Read More
My son, girlfriend, and DH and I drove to Dallas to catch our flight. Never again will I make a 4.5 hour drive to catch a flight. While we made the drive fine, none of us got any sleep the night before our flight due to our late arrival in DFW. EMBARKATION: This was a breeze. We arrived to the port by LIMO (highly recommend Limo Orlando) from Orlando. This was a surprise for my son and his girlfriend. We arrived around 1pm and were on the ship by 1:30. Again, speedy and smooth. Our first day at sea however was a blurr for me as I was SO Tired. We all were from not getting enough sleep the night before our flight. Make sure you get enough sleep to enjoy your first day! We had three ports of call, Nassau, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten. The only thing I would like to see if more time in Nassau. We were only there for about 5 hours. St. Thomas and St. Maarten were longer and were beautiful islands. We had a marvelous time on them. CABINS DH and I along with my sister and her husband had aft balcony cabins. They were wonderful! Our cabins were adjoining to our cabin steward opened up the "divider". We were so pleased with them. DS and his girlfriend had an inside very close to us. Our cabin steward, Staney, was wonderful. He always greeted you and said hi. I would say he was exceptional and made our cruise wonderful. FOOD What can I say but divine! We all ate too much. Everything was great and our head water, Jesus, made it so much more memorable. We found out that 10/15 was his birthday, so we surprised him with a cake and a boutonniere. He was speechless and the moment was priceless. Every evening we did eat in the main dining room, but on Monday, our first day at sea, we did dine in the Emerald Room. For those of you that have not experienced this, it is a rare treat. Food was outstanding along with the service. However, be prepared for a 2 1/2 hr dining experience. Truthfully, in my opinion, there was too much time in between courses, but again, we enjoyed it immensely. We had late dining and were able to order anything and everything we wanted. I may try early dining next time as by the time we got out of the dining room, it was 10pm, I was stuffed and ready for bed! Here's the weird part, NOT ONCE did we ever notice any ill behaved children at all. In fact, with all the children on board, we never noticed them at all! I even mentioned to my husband how I have never even noticed them, but yet they were there! The Glory was a wonderful ship. Again, this was DH and I's second time cruising - ever. In our humble opinion, Carnival delivers a memorable cruise experience with outstanding service from all crew. No one can beat their price and we will continue to sail with them. Read Less
Sail Date October 2009
I've never been one to complain about trivial things in life, especially when there is sun, eye candy, and cold beer involved. But my trip on the Glory has changed all of that. My fiance and I decided to book our second cruise on the ... Read More
I've never been one to complain about trivial things in life, especially when there is sun, eye candy, and cold beer involved. But my trip on the Glory has changed all of that. My fiance and I decided to book our second cruise on the Glory after a wonderful experience on the Carnival Inspiration in May, 2008. We also took my parents along whom my fiance adores and I was happy because it was an opportunity of a lifetime to experience something like that with them. We boarded the Glory early, at approximately 1:00 pm and got settled into our staterooms. The parents were in 6418, and we were in 6416. After a short time, we went to the promenade to explore a bit. My father has COPD and chromic emphysema, so he cannot walk for extended periods of time. With that said, I wanted to get them settled and, since they're coffee fanatics, I approached the "Cremes" coffee bar near the casino and asked if they had regular coffee. The young lady told me that she did not, that they only had "special" coffee drinks and that I needed to proceed to the Lido deck for regular coffee. No problem I told her. I went back to the leather sofa that my parents were sitting on and told them that we were going to go up to level 9 and get them two cups of coffee. Once we found the Lido deck, I got two cups of coffee but the cream was empty. I looked around for a crew member and there was absolutely knowbody in sight. Agitated, I took the two cups of coffee and headed for the elevators to return to floor 6. Once there, I went back to the "Cremes" counter and asked the same young lady if she could kindly add a drop of milk to each cup. I explained to her that there wasn't any cream upstairs, and that I carried the coffee from the 9th floor. As she walked to the mini fridge to retreive a gallon of what appeared to be old milk, she told me that she was only going to do this favor "one time," and that next time, she was going to charge me. That night I laid down in my bed, expecting my body to be comfortably usurped by the mattress, but instead felt like I was lying on a soggy waffle that had been doused with syrup. The bed had no suppport and was lower than that where my fiance lye. At approximately 11pm, a loud thumping bass began to penetrate our stateroom floor, coupled with random adolescents yelling and screaming "yyeeeaahhhhh" over and over. I felt like I was in Panama City Beach, spring break of 1999. Needless to say, I slept from approximately 3:30 am to 07:00 am, nice and rested for our first fun day at sea. After being crabby and snappy all day with my family, I thought things were going to begin to improve. I saw my room steward, AJ (who was fabulous the entire trip, BTW) and told him that I was having trouble sleeping in the stateroom because of the bass from the disco bar down below. I explained to AJ that at home, I sleep with a fan in my face all night. AJ told me that I could check with guest services to inquire about getting a fan to put in my room, and I told him that that would be great! I went to guest services that night and told the young lady my situation. I explained to her that the combination of the uncomfortable bed, the bass, the ship's rudder vibrating the light fixtures in the room, and simply being in a strange environment were making it difficult to sleep. She did not seem very concerned, and told me to hang on a few minutes. She walked over to another Guest Services employee and spoke with her for a few minutes. She then returned and told me that they do have fans onboard, but that they're for people with "special medical conditions." She simply said "I am sorry," but I cannot help you. Angered, I went back to the room and again stayed awake until approximately 3am, when the bass finally subsided. That night in the casino, while I was feeding 20/50 dollar bills into the slot machines, I asked one of the bar tenders for a glass of water. She looked at me and replied " a bottled water, sir?" And I replied, whatever you have. If you have a glass of water, I would prefer that. She replied to me, "all we have is bottled water. If you want a glass of water, you'll have to go up to Deck 9, the Lido deck." At that, I cashed-out and went and sat on my bed in my stateroom. Did she really think that I didn't know that there was water on Deck 9? I was gambling. I did not want to go to deck 9. If you're looking to do anything after 10pm on this ship other than gamble/drink alcohol, you'll wish that you were at home in your own bed. Many nights I ventured to the Lido deck, outdoors, only to find absolutely knowbody and nothing to do. What few shows I did go to were exceptionally good, but they were over quickly and then everything calmed down. Where are the midnight buffets/parties? Concerts and fun competitions? Trivia? The dining room was a good experience, but I was usually too tired to really enjoy it. The food other than that in the dining room was ok, but nothing special. There were never any good beverages, and the coffee was hit or miss. Sometimes it was too weak or too strong, sometimes too cold and, sometimes, there wasn't any at all. The desserts reminded me of those huge sheet cakes that they make in hospitals/jails that are intended to feed a large crowd something sweet while also being cost-conscience. I kinda felt like the crew was ready for us to be off of the ship before we even left Port Canaveral. I could go on and on, but you probably get the gist of it. I personally do not believe in treating people badly when they are the ones who are paying for your salary/benefits. A company simply cannot hope to survive once they begin to do so. Most of the crew members seemed miserable, unhappy, and they do not smile or sometimes do not even acknowledge a passenger when eye contact is made. I was almost depressed on this ship. Those responsible for training employees in customer service at Carnival should consider looking at a company like Outback Steakhouse or some of the higher-end hotels. Good Hospitality Management will keep a company afloat, regardless of it's specialization. I might give a cruise another shot in the future, but probably not with Carnival. After our 5 day Inspiration Cruise, we were so impressed that we booked the Glory that same week. I talked the experience up for almost 11 months to my parents, only to have an experience such as this. Next year we're going to an all-inclusive resort, so I should probably get off this site and begin my research. Read Less
Sail Date September 2009
We planned this cruise around one of our daughters coming with us, but she had to cancel out so that just left the two of us. My wife has cruised quite a bit with Carnival and one Big Red Boat, but this was my third, first on a big ship. ... Read More
We planned this cruise around one of our daughters coming with us, but she had to cancel out so that just left the two of us. My wife has cruised quite a bit with Carnival and one Big Red Boat, but this was my third, first on a big ship. We did the Carnival Holiday two years ago. I did not know what to expect on a 7 night cruise on a huge ship. We flew from TN into Orlando and bought a round trip bus ride to the port for $140 each. Simple to get there and the lady driving the bus was a hoot. Getting on the boat was fairly easy. We had a long line to stand in, but it move fairly quickly. We got on board, it was hot. We went to get some food at the grill and walked the decks for a while. I got some cramps from being dehydrated, but they eventually went away. We set sail on adventure. As I said we planned the cruise with our daughter in mind. She likes days at sea (this cruise had 3), we don't so much. We booked the early seating for dinner, because on the last cruise she always wanted to run off to the teen club and never ate with us. We only made it to the main dining room two times during this trip (they had given us a romantic table for two!)At this point in our lives, three days of being forced to relax was pretty much what we needed. After a couple days of trying to wind down we found out that we actually used to be really fun people. We went to bed fairly early the first night and it was a good thing. Tennison our cabin steward was great. New animals we had never seen before. We did a couples massage (my first massage) and the girls in the spa were great. My wife even got her hair style changed and colored on the ship. We won the $1199 bingo game on the last full day so that was a plus. One of the most fun times on the ship were spent in the piano bar with Russell. Piano bar music sung by a singer from the Philippines was great fun! We spent some time in there almost every night. The karaoke bar was fun too. To see a tall county looking guy with cowboy boots on get up and sing Purple Rain was too much. Ice cream and yogurt machines were always used and the grill was great when you needed a quick snack. Pools seemed a little small, but it was very hot on this cruise. One thing I noticed was the lack of noticably drunk people. Lots of drinking going on but not many stupid people. That was a blessing. They staff kept activities going on the deck during the day and the shows were great at night. Big Sexy in the comedy club was great and John Wesley Ausin from Georgia had us in tears. This was a great addition to the cruising experience. Keep up the good work on this area! Read Less
Sail Date September 2009
I'd been on numerous cruises, but had avoided Carnival due to image I had of a 7 day frat party at sea. Tried the Pride in June and loved it. Was that just a fluke, or would I love my 9/26 Glory cruise too? Traveled with a coworker ... Read More
I'd been on numerous cruises, but had avoided Carnival due to image I had of a 7 day frat party at sea. Tried the Pride in June and loved it. Was that just a fluke, or would I love my 9/26 Glory cruise too? Traveled with a coworker (her 1st cruise) this time. Glory was beautiful and very clean. I saw a few rust streaks on front of ship and after a couple hours in our 1st port, they were scrubbed and painted over. As a facilities manager, I was impressed by how there was constant cleaning and maintenance. The room was identical to our room on the Pride except this was on lido deck near elevator. A little noisy at times from performers in the lobby, but never kept us awake. So convenient to get to sundecks, pools and buffet. Food was excellent. I would have been just as happy eating dinners in Red Sail informal restaurant as lunches were great, but wanted my friend to experience the more formal dining too. Cruise director James was very good, loved the Comedy Club they are testing on the Glory. Never had a problem finding lounge chairs. I won a diamond and sapphire necklace at the shopping talk (which I would normally have blown off, but again wanted my friend to experience it all.) Only negative for me was the red, white and blue game that Carnival has as a competition between floors. It got to be a bit much, it was obvious at times they were tossing "points" out to one team or another and nobody was keeping track of it. Nobody really wins anything.... Others may have loved it, but to me it was overkill. I thought this was one of the best cruises I've ever been on. Read Less
Sail Date September 2009
Finding the Dock was Extremely easy, getting to the parking garage was a little crazy, they kept directing us to where to drop baggage, but after that it was a snap. The check in process was easy and quick. While waiting they did some ... Read More
Finding the Dock was Extremely easy, getting to the parking garage was a little crazy, they kept directing us to where to drop baggage, but after that it was a snap. The check in process was easy and quick. While waiting they did some performances and announcements, just indicative of a fun cruise. Boarding was very quick and painless, even though we aren't platinum members yet. Our rooms weren't ready, as we got there early (a lot of people had that idea), but food was already being prepared on the lido deck. I had heard comments about Glory looking old and worn.. but I found it looked great. For the traffic it goes through, the upkeep is very well done. We had a balcony for our first time and although it says its the same footage, it seems larger, the bed was extremely comfortable, as were the pillows. The bathroom was much larger than the Princess I had been on before, storage good. Our room steward was excellent, always friendly, kept our room great. Our dining room server was Rudi.. he was great. Our first night there though.. we ordered deserts.. I ordered one, my husband said me too, our friend said me three... lol... my husband got 2 and our friend got 3... so no more slang.. But he had a great sense of humor, our food was always hot, and so very patient and fast. I thought the food in the dining room was outstanding, as always the chocolate melting cake is to die for. The Buffet was also outstanding.. much different than the Fantasy which I was also on, much better I have to say, and something different was served on each side of the buffet, which was different than the Fantasy, which I enjoyed. They had a chocolate buffet which if you like chocolate, you mustn't miss. The entertainment was good. I enjoyed the musicians. One group, Souldrive, though while an excellent band took 30-45 minute breaks.. none of the others did. We saw some of the comedians they were good, and went to some of the shows and enjoyed them. All the crew and members that worked there were very friendly with the exception of one or two who just couldn't ruin the cruise, and was such a minority, because everyone else was. Disembarkation was amazingly easy, if seemingly long of course. We left our carry off in the room and went up and had breakfast in the dining room and then went back down to get our carry on/off. Then went down to wait in the areas posted. They have a suitcase drop similar to an airline which made it very nice finding your baggage than the long room trying to find your baggage. I loved it and cannot wait to go back. Read Less
Sail Date September 2009
We picked this cruise because it was close to home (my husband drives all over Fla. all week long) and had the ports we liked. Couldn't work out the airfare with a cruise that wouldn't bankrupt us! This was our 14th cruise (I ... Read More
We picked this cruise because it was close to home (my husband drives all over Fla. all week long) and had the ports we liked. Couldn't work out the airfare with a cruise that wouldn't bankrupt us! This was our 14th cruise (I love cruising-the ultimate relaxation!!!) Just a note though....they need to replace their beds on this ship-was adequate - no cork liners for the beds, but we did have robes which was nice. Also, put chair in the inside rooms like on the Freedom so I can read in the room. Also, open the library more often. It is a wonderful place to relax and get books, especially when you bring on a book that turns out crummy! No nail polish remover or cough medicine in the shop and, very small selection of perfume and practically no selection of Clinique as on the Freedom. Embarkation was a bit busier than we've experienced, but thanks to Carnival organized. Port Canaveral is our favorite. Ft. Lauderdale the worst. Beware, security is a bit tighter, but of course, the agents had a sense of humor, and we felt safe with security. We headed to the buffet to start the "eatathon!" Surprised that we could find a table and good selection of food. We then went to the cabin and was surpised to find our luggage waiting. In the past, we've gotten our luggage 15 min before dinner. Our cabin steward, Risky, was wonderful & friendly. Was surprised we got our early seating and lucked out to be at a 4 person table with Bill & Marge. It was great meeting them at dinner each evening. Since it was our 40th anniversary, my husband left it to me to decide if we would do the optional $30 each dinner, but it wasn't necessary. Except for the Mahi Mahi I ordered the first night, every dinner was wonderful. Our server, Anthony (the Matre'd was also Anthony)& Arta (?) were great and really made us feel welcome. Girls-Anthony was really good looking & Single and Arta so funny (boy can he dance during the servers evening performance). Even Anthony, the maitre'd was friendly and made a point of checking each table. Ports: St. Thomas was nice and we only looked at the shops at the pier. Never got downtown. Was waiting to get to St. Maarten to shop in our favorite store, but hurricane Erika diverted us to Turks & Caicos (ugh)so never got to the port. No perfume, no knockoff purses, no costume jewelry and no discounted liquor. Turks & Caicos was not a port I would not run back to. If you were there for the diving or beach, this was the place. Shopping was a total rip (you should just wear a sign...Take all my $$$). Did find a slider necklace on board and did get a good price on it. Shop personnel were really nice & friendly. Casino people also were great! Came home with some slot money from my favorite machine. Slots were not as bad as some ships. We took this cruise because it had a cigar bar (RC had done away with theirs). This was a deal breaker for my husband (I don't smoke). We love RC for the promenade and the 24 hr Seattle coffee. On this cruise as was with the Carnival Freedom, he had to buy a coffee card to get good coffee (my decaf on board was great-usually the opposite). As it turned out, he could only smoke his cigars in the "On the Green" bar. Cruise lines...get with the program-there are plenty of men who smoke cigars. They are the "buying" public. Why alienate them? It turned out that the room that they had previously used for a cigar bar (large room)(as on the other Carnival ship) was always empty. Why? Beware, drink prices have risen. Carnival is trying to institute a new feature, Comedy Shows, both G & R Rated (separately). I think the Glory was the first ship, and in my opinion, was a great success. We got tickets to each late night show, but they also had a waiting line to get in line. The concept was very popular. They also had great shows in the theatre every night. There was always something to do. Bingo is also getting a bit more expensive. Debarkation was smooth, and we were off the boat and in our car about 9:30 am. This cruise surprised us. Our previous experience on an older ship wasn't the greatest (RCCL-Sovereign was horrible on a 4 niter). Just a suggestion to those of you who "wouldn't be caught dead" on a Carnival ship. You get more than your money's worth. This cruise was one of the best we've been on. Carnival works hard to please the public and that is why they are one of the most popular lines. Incidentally, there were all age groups. Already looking for my 15th cruise. Thanks to Carnival, my husband and I got to relax which we needed badly. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
Scheduled a last minute cruise on the Glory, mainly for the itinerary. Short review follows: Embarkation - in my opinion a breeze. Family dropped us off at luggage area, who quickly unloaded. We then filled out the forms and got in line ... Read More
Scheduled a last minute cruise on the Glory, mainly for the itinerary. Short review follows: Embarkation - in my opinion a breeze. Family dropped us off at luggage area, who quickly unloaded. We then filled out the forms and got in line and was thru security and upstairs within 10 min. About a 10 min line and within about 30 min. we were on the Lido deck. Ports were supposed to be Nassua, St Thomas and St Maarten. We missed St Maarten because of an approaching tropical storm and the cruise felt it would be bad weather on the island and then we'd have trouble staying in front of the storm. They instead took us to Grand Turk. Although nice and convenient shops right at the pier, it wasn't the same. We shopped for an hour or so and then went back on ship. Pier got very crowded as the Liberty pulled in during this time as well. St Thomas was lovely. We did a tour that I booked online after reading many reviews on Cruise Critic. Sightseeing, beach and shopping for the day. Nassau was ok in my opinion and all we did was toured the Atlantis hotel on our own and then spent time in the straw market back by the pier. Good deals and you MUST barter. Food, and service was as I expected. Nothing above normal really. Disembarkation was very painless as well. We were off and on the ride to the airport by 9. Our cabin was 9288 on the Lido deck and I give GREAT thanks to our carnival agent for this balcony cabin. This is port side so each port we came into was on our side. Also, we had the 3rd cabin back from the doors out onto Lido and we never heard a thing. Very great location. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
Let me start out by saying this was my first cruise so I had a BLAST! I can't compare my experience to a previous experience, just to what I have been told by my friends who have cruised before. First of all, embarking the ship ... Read More
Let me start out by saying this was my first cruise so I had a BLAST! I can't compare my experience to a previous experience, just to what I have been told by my friends who have cruised before. First of all, embarking the ship was crazy! Luckily my friend that I was traveling with was familiar with what we needed to do once we got on the ship. There were several people in the lobby with t-shirts on that said "ask me" which i thought was great! The one thing I was disappointed with was that we were using cash for our ship accounts and the computer wasn't accepting those when we checked in (???) so we had to wait and do it at the pursors desk once we boarded the ship. Needless to say the line was 300 people long. We went to the Lido deck to get our lunch buffet (forget taking the elevators, its only 6 short flights up, if you can take the stairs- ALWAYS a wait for the elevators) and I was surprised when a table became available (my friend actually asked me "do you want to sit here?" really? SIT DOWN! People will push you out of the way for a seat at this point) Food was just ok, I spent most of the time eating hot dogs and burgers. My friend thought the food was great, I thought it was just edible, never really enjoyed it. They provide all you can drink lemonade, but half the time it was out so I drank water. Our room was adorable! I never thought I'd be able to sleep in that tiny bed, but I guess the motion of the ship and the fact that I had been drinking in the sun all day put me right out! Of course it never lasted long. We were right across from the laundry room so we never got a full nights sleep. People would be in there chatting at 7 am!!! BRING EARPLUGS if you plan to sleep all night. Even in any other room, people will yell down the hallway to each other. One night I even heard what I think was an employee pushing a rattling cart down the hall at like 1 am! We had a balcony and I am so glad we did! After our busy day we would come back to the room at night, and just sit out there and listen to the ocean. It was beautiful. Dinner was not quite the experience people told me it would be. Our waiter was nice, but the experience wasn't how everyone had descibed it. Although he did find red pepper flakes for my friend and had them ready for her at every meal. Food, was just ok, best dessert was the first night (creme brulee) and it went downhill from there. Also, I don't know what the big deal is about the molten chocolate cake! It was a 1/4 inch layer of brownie on top and 4 gallons of hot fudge inside. YUCK! I guess you have to REALLY like chocolate to enjoy it. Ok, if you are planning to lay in the sun by the pool on the sea days, do not go on the Glory! The pools are a little bigger than hot tubs. They are shallow and hold about 10-12 people. I was soooo disappointed. They have 3 pools like this. So you can sit in the hot sun all day but, oops, there are already 12 people in the pool, you can't cool off right now. Now that I'm done complaining (esp about that POOL) I have to say, you will never be bored on this ship. There is always something to do! The entertainment staff are adorable and they made for a fun time! If you've never been on Carnival you should definitely try it! Also, I was expecting the drinks to be outrageously priced (after what I've heard from my friend who had a bar bill of $1300!!) They are actually cheaper than some restaurants in my hometown AND they had my favorite wine by the glass!! I would definitely cruise Carnival again, but not on the Glory, only because of that whole pool thing. The staff are very friendly, you will NEVER be bored! Oh they have a comedy club too and the comedians were GREAT! I laughed all week. Shows were great! Those dancers are unbelieveable!!! We also saw a Motown show (I forget his name but he was great!) Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
This was the first cruise for my husband and I (26 years old). The Carnival Glory came highly recommended by several coworkers who had wonderful cruises and experiences on board. High points: 1. Nice roomy, clean cabin. 2. Dining ... Read More
This was the first cruise for my husband and I (26 years old). The Carnival Glory came highly recommended by several coworkers who had wonderful cruises and experiences on board. High points: 1. Nice roomy, clean cabin. 2. Dining room food was very good. We enjoyed it every night. 3. Shows were great... Our favorite part of the cruise. 4. We really enjoyed room service...coffee and P&J sandwiches. 5. The in room movies were good. Low points: 1. The buffet and other food besides the dining room was awful. We were seriously starving by the end of the cruise. 2. I don't think I ever want lemonade again in my life. The "free" drinks were awful. 3. High speed internet was excessively expensive...paid $55 for 1.5 hours of slow internet that timed out every other task. 4. The ship rocked terribly the first 4 days...like could not walk straight down the hall, cabinets opening in our room...swaying in the dining room trying to eat. Even with patches and tablets for motion sickness we were very queasy. (Note: Motion sickness medicine makes you very drowsy!!) 5.The pools were SO little. We didn't get in because 3 tiny pools were full of kids. 6.The shops didn't have very much selection...and even "duty free" were not a very good deal. Apart from getting off at ports and the nighty shows... there is nothing to do on this ship except drink, gamble, and lay out (For 7 days). It was FULL on children that were apparently unsupervised. We had a bad experience and will never cruise again. I'm guessing cruises are for people that like to drink, gamble, eat loads of bad food, then get sunburned... Not us! Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
We cruised on the Carnival Glory in April on Spring Break with a group; and had a blast.  We had so much fun...when planning a summer vacation...and taking up on an offer from my mom for a "Christmas Present" of a vacation ... Read More
We cruised on the Carnival Glory in April on Spring Break with a group; and had a blast.  We had so much fun...when planning a summer vacation...and taking up on an offer from my mom for a "Christmas Present" of a vacation cruise... we decided Carnival was the way to go again.  We chose the Glory because of the itinerary and the experience we'd had in April.  We were not disappointed.  Honestly, we had BETTER dining staff this time...in the Golden dining room...with Marco (bar staff), Agung (Waiter) and Risaine (waitress).  They were superb!.  Our cabins on the Lido deck...side by side balcony cabins...we had the steward open up the balcony divider for us... and we had a grand time!    All over the staff greeted us by name.    Honestly...  it WAS more crowded this trip.  And my complaints would be more with the other guests...and their children... we had an 8 year old with us...who was relatively well mannered.  My husband and I are both in education...and I we deal with kiddos most of the year... well...  there were some pretty rude kids on the ship (as were their parents).  On spring break (where I expected some rowdiness)...not so much.  But...as for Carnival...we were very pleased.  Our daughter took part in Camp Carnival a couple of the days and LOVED it.  We were very pleased with the staff, the activities and the security (that's the overprotective parents and educators in us :).  The ship was very clean.  Yes..it's going into dry dock in January... and that will do her well.  But...you know the ship looks great.  The ports were fine.  We LOVE St. Maartan.  Take the snorkeling tour on the Golden Eagle...it was great.     St. Thomas...we weren't with it...and waited too long to book a trip...and ended up with the all inclusive island tour.  It got us to Maegan's Bay (we wanted a beach)...but we had to stop at A LOT of road side stands (I think buddies of the tour guide). Maegan's Bay IS beautiful.  Next time, though... I think we'll go to St. John's.  Blackbeard's Castle wasn't too much too look at for us either.  Food...it was really good.  You have to know what to order (not the flat iron steak).  Otherwise...it's decent.  We were pleased.  I was NOT pleased with embarkation this time.  It was more chaotic.  There were medical questionnaires to complete...due to swine flu concerns.  I didn't have a problem completing those.  But...i think it could've been handled more efficiently.  The  port staff wasn't as pleasant as i remembered in April.  Debarkation  was MUCH smoother.  We did self assist again (and we packed A LOT smarter...fewer clothes and used the self laundry on ship). BUT  the Glory staff now encouraged people to go wait in larger areas like the Amber palace, etc...and we went early... skipped breakfast (although my daughter and mom got room service early that morning...very smart) and got down elevators.  We were off the ship by 8:30.  It was awesome!  I have to give kudos to Ryan the cruise director...he was great as well.  We'll choose Carnival again...maybe the Glory.  Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
First let me warn you...I tend to write my reviews long and detailed and like a diary so I can read them in the future and relive my vacations! Prelude: We have previously cruised three times with Royal Caribbean and twice with ... Read More
First let me warn you...I tend to write my reviews long and detailed and like a diary so I can read them in the future and relive my vacations! Prelude: We have previously cruised three times with Royal Caribbean and twice with NCL. We took some friends on RCL in December 2007 aboard the Majesty of the Seas and all they could do is compare it to Carnival! They have only been on Carnival. We decided to give it a try for ourselves! I had already booked the Adventure of the Seas out of San Juan but cancelled and booked the Glory for much less (and no airfare). Myself and wife and two daughters (22 & 18). DD's have been on all the cruises except the Majesty with us. This would be DD18's first "adult" cruise! This cruise is her senior trip, so to speak. A graduation gift that we can all enjoy! (Just another excuse to cruise!) She's loved the teen clubs on NCL & RCL. This time she gets to spend more time with us and DD22 (they get along great!). We drove down from NW Georgia on Friday. I'm originally from Central Florida and my parents have had a place on Cocoa Beach since 1983 so that's where we headed. Didn't get in until 8:30pm. A 615 mile drive! Boy I was glad to finally get there! Embarkation - we arrived at the port at 10:15. After dropping off the luggage and my wife and daughters, I pulled around and parked. Parking is $105 for the week. While paying I noticed an advertisement on the booth that said the NCL Sun is coming to Port Canaveral. The Sun is the former Pride of Aloha that we sailed on in 2005 in Hawaii so it caught my attention. The first lot (not covered) was really full but I was lucky enough to find one parking space very close to the entrance. We breezed through the metal detector and headed up the escalator. We were directed to fill out a medical questionnaire (took 2 minutes) and headed over to the desk to register. There was only one couple ahead of us. After that we were sitting down in the waiting area by 10:40am ready to start our first Carnival cruise! There was a wedding party of about 40 people across from us. Seems that they all were getting on the ship for the 1:30 wedding then everyone except the bride and groom would exit the ship by 3pm! Before we knew it there was an announcement saying people were still disembarking the ship and it would be a while before we boarded! So much for getting on early! We felt sorry for the bride to be as she needed time to get ready for her wedding! But she was a trooper, walking around spending time and joking with her family and friends and us! We had a few conversations with members of the wedding party. I mentioned that this was our first Carnival cruise and a couple started telling us how much fun we'd have! They'd been on 3 Carnival cruises and loved them all. To kill the time, a Carnival crew member had us playing with a beach ball! It was funny to see it hit unsuspecting folks and watch their reaction. DD's both tired of this fast! I didn't!! Announcements were also made for people who were celebrated anniversaries or birthdays. This was something neither NCL nor RCL had done before. We could tell right away that Carnival was all about fun! After all, "isn't fun the best thing to have"? A quote from a favorite movie..... We finally were able to board at 12:15. The wedding party took priority then VIP boarding, then us! We headed straight to the Lido deck. I had a grilled Ruben sandwich from the deli. Very good. Awful iced tea though! Being from the south, I am very critical about my "sweet tea!" This was unsweetened. It would be lemonade and water for me from now on! And maybe a beer or 30! Checked out the Aft Bar in preparation for our Cruise Critic meet and greet. Having read so much about the Glory on CC, I found myself looking for signs of aging. There really weren't many! Some rust here and there but overall she looks grand! It was about 1:20pm by now and we headed up to see our room. I booked a 6B on the spa deck. All four of us together in a room again! We did this on our first two cruises but in smaller rooms! This room is 156 square feet but seems much larger. The sofa is a day bed and the fourth bed is a Pullman right above it. We have a ceiling to floor plate glass window that really affords a wonderful view. It's at about at 70 degree angle and has sheer curtains, as well as a heavy curtain to block the light. A small table and two chairs also. No one can walk outside your window so this is really private. It really makes the room seem so much larger. DD18 commented that it was like having a balcony only air conditioned! I agree. Left the room and since the spa is 30 feet away we found ourselves taking a spa tour. I wanted to check out the facilities and see the hot tubs and lap pool with the rock waterfall. I'm a " Pool Guy", having been in the swimming pool/spa business for 25 years so of course I can be very critical. But not today! I'm on vacation.......(I'd already checked out the Glory's CDC scores!) We came back to the room to find most of our luggage had arrived. The most important bag, mine with (2) 32oz RumRunners, was there so I was happy. Our garment bag and "gadget bag" showed up an hour or so later. I had purchased a collapsible cooler for the trip and we filled it with Pepsi, Ginger ale and a bottle of wine that we had walked on with. We met our cabin steward Emmanuel from the Philippines (and his assistant Pia from Thailand) and asked him to fill it up with ice. He said no problem and took it away and brought it back 5 minutes later. Great guy and very personable. Pia is very quiet! Next, DD22 and I went to the internet cafe to sign up for service. We're an online family so I sprang for the 250 minutes for $100 and received an extra 20 minutes "free". The girls have to check Facebook and email as do I! And I can't forget about Cruise Critic! At 3:30 an announcement was made saying the Muster Drill started in 15 minutes! Capers said 4pm. Hmmmmmm. We made our way up to the room to meet DW and DD18 and get our life jackets and headed back down to deck 4 right on time (to the minute!). Don't take me as being critical when I write this but Carnival is really lacking with the muster drill! On all our six previous cruises we were always either counted or made to sound off our room number to make sure that everyone was accounted for. Today everyone (including the crew) just stood around talking, laughing and yawning waiting for it be over. Our crew guy was playing with some kids the whole time! Don't get me wrong, it didn't bother me at all....just an observation. If the ship sinks just don't get in MY way!!! Then up to the room to drop off the lifejackets and on to the Aft Bar for the CC meet & greet. Met Kathi & her daughter Danielle from Largo, FL. Ken and his wife from Cocoa. Dennis and his wife from outside Memphis, TN. And a couple more. Not nearly as many as were online but it's about quality not quantity right? Ordered some drinks and chatted. Got there around 4:15 and stayed until 5pm. We made plans to go to the Straw Market with Kathi and her daughter Danielle in the morning. Then it was time to get ready for dinner. It's always nice to meet the people you've been corresponding with for the last few months! We love making new cruise friends! We picked the first seating for our dinners and we were assigned the Platinum dining room on deck 3. We were seated with a lovely couple from Bradenton, FL, Rick and Gina. Two boys, 15 & 9. And Rick's parents who are visiting from New Zealand, George and his wife (her name escapes me). Rick was born and raised in New Zealand and has been stateside for over 20 years. The family business in New Zealand is dairy cows. They own a couple "cattle stations" back home! Ranches to you and me! Very large ranches. For dinner I ordered the fried Tiger Shrimp (4 large straightened shrimp). Mary had a chicken dish with noodles. Sorry but we forget the name. Girls both enjoyed the Tilapia. DD18 was a little upset that the Carnival classic menu didn't include salmon. I had read online that it did. It does however include snapper as the fish choice nightly. Mary wasn't too crazy about her chicken dish. I told the table about the warm chocolate melting cake and everyone ordered it for dessert! It was as advertised. Like eating warm brownie batter! With vanilla ice cream. YUM! Walked around the lobby a bit then went back to the room. Mary decided to stay in and Leslie and I headed down to the piano bar. I had heard so much about Russell and he was all that and more! We were there for 4 hours! Then around 1am DD22 and I headed off to sleep! Sunday - woke up to a nice headache at 7:30am! I'm getting too old for this! Trying to hang with the 22 year old! She's a senior in college and a sorority girl...need I say more? Met Kathi and Danielle at 9am. This was our fourth time in Nassau so I know my way around pretty well. We headed to the Straw Market. It was HOT! No ventilation to speak of. About half of the booths were not open yet. Some don't open at all on Sunday. The women all got some good deals on the infamous knock off purses (please keep your flames on this to yourself or you will receive my wrath! You know who you are!) While we were leaning on the seawall waiting for the younger girls to come out, we witnessed a young girl about 17 simply pass out while walking directly in front of us. The pour thing hit her head on the pavement and started convulsing. Her father picked her up and a couple locals helped with water and fans. When she came to about 30 seconds later she didn't know what had happened. She seemed to be ok after 15 minutes or so. A really sobering experience especially if you have kids. The girls wanted to go to Senor Frogs but they weren't open yet. It was about 10:30am. From there we walked down the main street for 45 minutes or so waiting for Senor Frogs to open (10:59am is the posted opening time!) We checked out the shops that were open. I'd say around 40% were closed, with it being Sunday. Got to Frogs around 11:30am. It was already packed! We ordered some drinks. Lots of balloon hats were being made and passed around. The MC was going around talking to folks and having them sing impromptu karaoke. They had a female only frozen drink chug (thru a straw). The poor girls all got "brain freezes"! Then they started a Conga line. My DD18 Caitlyn and Danielle joined in and had a blast. Kathi joined them. Then more dancing and having shots squeezed into your mouth! Senor Frogs doesn't have a drinking age...only a drinking height! We actually had a fun time at Senor Frogs this time. This coming from the man who called it a filthy dump last January. What a difference the summer makes. In January it was on 25% full and NOTHING was going on. Just very low volume music. This time it WAS hopping! And full. I stand corrected! From there it was back to the ship to get lunch. We got to the ship around 1:20pm. We had to be onboard by 1:30pm and there was a line. We waited about 15 minutes in line to board. We headed up to the Lido deck buffet for lunch. Today's buffet lunch was Mexican. We live in NW Georgia and our little town is home to around 8 Mexican restaurants and we eat at a couple often so I opted for another grilled Reuben! Mary got a grilled ham and cheese. The girls got hamburgers and hot dogs. Everyone enjoyed their lunches. I would have thought Carnival would have more of selection on their buffet. Not just the "International" lunch. RCL did the same thing this past January on the Monarch of the Seas. And yes, I realize Carnival offers the deli, fish and chips and Chinese bar (not very good). DW wanted something hot and not "fast food". But the sandwiches hit the spot. The girls decided to lay out by the pool for a while and didn't have a problem finding an open chair which surprised me. The usual "chair hogs" were visible all week but it wasn't excessive. If you got to the pool by 10am or so you could find a chair. DW Mary and I explored the ship a bit. We went in search of the secret door to the front of the ship's bow deck. I was told the doors were on decks 9, 7 and 6. The door on deck 9 was locked. The door on deck 7 however was open and if afforded us a nice quiet place to watch our Bahamian sail away. The bridge was right above us and we could see the crew inside. There are no chairs however. There are also stairs to the bow on deck 6. Here there are two wooden chests that you can sit on but if you do, you lose your view (unless you have a really long upper body!). We went there later in the week also. This is a great "secret" place. We were the only ones there both times. Tonight is formal night so the girls headed to the cabin around 4:30 to start getting ready. We arrived shortly thereafter. I brought a suit to wear for dinner. We enjoy dressing up for formal night. We usually have a family picture done each cruise. We did this in January so we opted not to go crazy with the photos this night. This time we only made one stop at a photographer. On the Monarch I swear we spent an hour going to 4 different photographers for pictures. DW's idea but I like the pictures we purchased. The RCL photographers seemed to take more time with us, posing us and discussing what we'd like. The Carnival photographers seemed to just want to get it over with. I watched several "sessions" throughout the week and this is the impression I came away with. Again, just an observation. We had planned to meet Kathi and Danielle at the Captain's Reception but didn't make it. Sorry Kathi! On this cruise it looked as though most guys wore slacks and shirts for dinner. There were several suits but I don't recall seeing anyone in a tuxedo. On RCL and NCL you see tuxedos a lot. Mostly on over 50 folks. I made it a point to observe the ages of our fellow cruisers. Carnival certainly does attract a younger crowd than RCL or NCL. But the number of children was about the same. Dinner was fine. Nothing spectacular but good. DD18 & I had the lobster & shrimp. Only one small tail and four grilled tiger shrimp. But our waiter brought me another complete plate right before I finished. I didn't ask for it but enjoyed half of the second tail. I gave DD18 the other half and DD22 some of the shrimp. DW had the prime rib. It was almost medium well which is not good for her prime rib but edible. DD22 ordered the NY Strip medium rare and it arrived at the table well done! She sent it back and the replacement was medium well! She wasn't happy but ate most of it. We don't cruise "for the food" so we don't let little bumps like this affect our attitude (unlike some posters!). Don't get me wrong, we love a great meal.... And we'd get tomorrow evening in the Emerald Room. The waiters sang and danced again. Ours pulled DD18 up to dance. She's danced since she could walk and if he didn't pick her she probable would have gotten up anyway! A good time was had by all. After dinner we all headed to the cabin to change and then we seemed to part company. DW and DD22 Leslie hit the shops. DD18 went to meet her new friend and I headed for the casino. Played blackjack for about an hour. Leslie and Mary came and found me. Actually walked away ahead for a change! We headed for the piano bar again! We couldn't get enough of Russell. Did I mention he was awesome? LOL! The comedian's adult performance was scheduled for 10:30pm in the Ebony Cabaret which is right next door to the Cinn-a-bar piano bar. I had walked over there at 9:30 and asked a waiter what time we should get there to get a seat and he said 10pm. Mary went over at 10pm and came back saying all the seats were taken! But.......luckily our new friend Kathi had saved us seats!! Yea Kathi!! Lewis Nixon was the comedian and he was hilarious. It lasted about an hour. Afterwards we decided to call it an early (11:30pm) night and headed off to our cabin. Tomorrow is a sea day and we plan to relax in preparation of our day trip Tuesday to the British Virgins Islands! More to come.......... Monday - Today is a sea day. Before the cruise began we offered DD18 Cait her choice of spa treatments as one of her graduation gifts. She decided on the oxydermy facial treatment. It's a combination of a microdermabrasion and oxygen together. They scheduled her for 8am today. She's likes to sleep in but was up before us and right on time. All cruise ship spas are wayyyyy overpriced in my opinion but this was a splurge for my daughter. Mary and I would splurge on the spa later in the week. We left a breakfast card outside the room last night for delivery between 8am-8:30am. It arrived about 8:15am. RCL usually calls you to make you aware the delivery is coming. This helps to wake you up also in preparation and helps them so their person isn't waiting minutes for everyone to get decent before opening the door! Carnival didn't do that. But we were up anyway. Again...just an observation... We hung out in the room for a while watching some Carnival programs on the television. Cait got back around 9:15am. She's was satisfied with how her face felt! (Didn't look any different to me!!!!) The girls decided to go to the Lido deck and lay out in the sun. I decided to explore and surf the internet. I always bring my laptop computer so I headed down to the lobby deck and found a comfortable sofa chair and table and fired it up. I was going to write a "live from the Glory" blog but yesterday when I started my laptop it wouldn't load Windows. I thought maybe the hard drive crashed but it started up today. I did a blog in 2006 on board the NCL Jewel and really enjoyed it. Went to the ships store and bought some tee-shirts. Looked through the other shops. I was really surprised at the lack of onboard shopping on the Glory. Even RCL's Monarch and Majesty, the oldest and smallest ships in their fleet had more shops! And it didn't come close to the NCL Jewel which was awesome. The Glory Fun Shops were certainly not fun to shop in! 1/3 costume jewelry, 1/3 perfume and the other 1/3 was a really bad selection of fine jewelry. I expected more from a large ship like the Glory. I ended up in the casino playing blackjack! This time I walked away with empty pockets. Easy come easy go! I stumbled upon the golf putting contest with the golf pro in the lobby at 11:30am. He had a putting green set up and gave you three putts from about 10 away. I was about the 6th person to go and sank all three putts! I then watched about 40 people try to tie me. I did my best Caddyshack impersonation with chants of "MMMMM MISS IT!!" LOL. No, I really did! And ended up winning. Yes, you're reading the rants of the Glory putting champion! For my prize I received a red Fun Ship beach bag and a certificate for 25% off a ships shore excursion! Whoa! Yeah Baby!!! I gave the certificate to a couple in the elevator later! I already had my two shore days planned and don't do ships excursion anymore. I always do them on my own or with an independent operator. I headed up to the Lido deck to find the girls and brag! See, all those days golfing finally paid off!! DW and I headed to the buffet. We decided to try the Chinese food at The Oriental. It's a small window on the starboard side between the front and back buffet. The deli is in the small location on the port side. We were not impressed with the food. DW bit into her pork lo mein and found it to be really spicy. When I looked at it it had chili peppers in it!! We have never seen this before unless you order it that way. She headed to the back buffet. It did have 'regular' food.... The front buffet had Mediterranean food set up. I did enjoy the fried chicken won tons. I went back and got 4 more! But didn't eat any of the soup or main dish after I tried it. No biggie. We headed over to stage to watch the ice carving demonstration but the weather looked bad and we went back to our cabin for a short while to chill. That afternoon DW and I went down and looked for our photos on deck 4. We usually will purchase quite a few photos. We like to place all of ours together each day and then the last day we can compare and select. This seemed to work with Carnival. We ran into Kathi and she asked about St. Thomas jewelry shopping since Mary loves to buy jewelry each cruise and St. Thomas is her favorite. We couldn't remember the name of the little family run shop we found in 2006 so we headed down to the internet cafe to Google it! No luck. Headed back to the casino bar and ordered drinks and watched the dance class going on. DD18 Cait and DD22 Leslie had signed up for the Pilates class every sea day at 4pm so they went to the spa for that. Around 5pm we headed back to our cabin to relax and get ready for dinner. I made a Ginger Fly drink and got out the laptop and tried to write my first days review! . Time for dinner in the Emerald Room Supper Club! In May I had pre booked dinner online for the Emerald Room supper club at 7pm today. This a great feature Carnival offers. RCL allows pre booking online as well. On NCL we had to book as soon as we boarded the ship. Of course, back then we met 3 or 4 of our CC members doing the same thing! I had read really good things about the Emerald Room and our CC Host Mach had posted some really scrumptious pictures of the food so the anticipation level was high. The restaurant is divided into two areas. The four of us were seated on the port side with a nice view out the windows. It was funny to watch people walking outside peering in the windows while fighting the gusting wind. We had three servers! All three were young women from Eastern Europe. Our wine sommelier Nicholas was from Russia. I found it interesting that they all were from there while it seemed most of the wait staffs in the main dining room were from SE Asia. Hmmm.....Just an observation. We could not have asked for a better dinner. The wait staff was outstanding. The food was top of the line. DD22 & I ordered a bottle of wine. One of the servers bought over a tray with all the meats to choose from. She was also in the buffet area at lunch time showing the same meats and talking to folks about the Emerald Room. Before we received our appetizers they brought us something from the chef. A small sampling of tomato based soup and another with salmon. Not bad. They also offered some different breads than the main dining room. One was Italian focaccia which we love. When I originally ordered I asked our waitress if she could bring the cheese tray as an appetizer (it's on the dessert menu). She told me that she didn't think so. I said I had done it before and she said she'd have to check with the chef. She came back with a beautiful bounty of cheese! Five large wedges of French cheeses. She gave a detailed description of each cheese. Then she sliced a large piece off each one and garnished the plate with grapes and crackers, kiwi and strawberries. WOW! I'm a cheesehead and I don't mean the Packers so I was in heaven. Then the salads came. I had the spinach salad with blue cheese crumbles and bacon. The girls all had the Caesar salad that the waitress made at the table. Next the appetizers arrived. Onion soup, shrimp cocktails and escargot and sushi. The onion soup was not your typical French onion variety. It had more wine flavor and was good. The escargot was great and very different from the dining room version. This turned out to be the case with some other foods as well. Larger portions and better quality. By this time an hour and half had gone by and we didn't even notice. It seemed like we were always nibbling on something! I made the comment that I was full already! For our main course DD18 & I had the lobster and, while not as big as I expected from Mach's pictures, it was still 2 ½ times the size of the dining room version the night before. Very good. DW and DD22 both had the filet mignon. DD22 commented that it was the best steak she's ever eaten. I took offense to this since I cook a mean steak on my Big Green Egg! When one of the server's came to take our dessert order I asked for a cheese tray!! She let out a big laugh! I skipped dessert. The girls enjoyed theirs. All in all it was a superb meal with excellent service and well worth the $30/person charge. I had our Friday dinner in the Emerald Room already booked in advance. I figured if it wasn't up to par tonight we'd cancel Friday. No way.... We're coming back again!! I've got to try the Porterhouse! Dinner lasted 2 hours and 30 minutes, exactly what we were told to expect. We were never bored or upset waiting for food. It was perfect and turned out to be one of the cruise highlights. We were so full after dinner we decided to retire early in preparation of our big day tomorrow in St. Thomas and the British Virgin Islands....more to come...... DAY FOUR - ST. THOMAS Today is a day I've looked forward to for 3 years since hearing about the island of Jost Van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands. I booked the charter boat Big Blue back in May for a ½ day trip to Jost Van Dyke and Sandy Cay. Captain Bradley Wilson was great with his email communications and phone calls. Some on Cruise Critic suggested I could not safely do this trip without missing the ship! We figured since we had 10 hours on St. Thomas that we could.... And did....with time to spare. Last night was extremely stormy and the boat really rocked and rolled. Being on deck 11 I was expecting this. I awoke around 3am to thunder and lightning that I could see thru the edges of the curtain. I couldn't go back to sleep so I raised the curtain a foot and laid on the floor and looked out the window. It was awesome. Quite a light show on the high seas. Thank God none of us got seasick. I am a firm believer in taking ginger tablets before the cruise and we all take Dramamine during the cruise. I also eat candied ginger and pickled ginger all the time anyway! Love the stuff! Woke up around 8am like a kid on Christmas morning! I was concerned because the capers didn't say anything about an immigration check this morning. I had tried calling Guest Services last night (3 different times in 30 minutes) and could not get a human, only recordings! This probably was me biggest complaint of the whole cruise. Why doesn't Carnival answer the phone on board the ship? I tried everything! So, after I got dressed I walked down to the lobby and asked. I also needed to break some $100 bills. I was told that no immigration check was scheduled. I thought that this was a federal regulation but hey, I'm not complaining! We were scheduled to dock at 10am but because of high seas and bad weather the night before we were delayed docking until 11am. Uh Oh! I had the day planned down to the minute! LOL! I wasn't a happy camper. I called Captain Wilson around 9:30 from my stateroom (I had cell service) and advised him of the situation. I also had a cab booked (suggested by Capt Wilson) and called Ali the driver to let him know what was happening. Here we had a major problem. Ali had a fare already booked for 11:30 and asked us to wait until noon for him. This just wouldn't do! That would set me back two hours and time was of the essence. I was bound and determined to get off the ship in the first wave and succeeded! In fact we were actually the very first people to get to the cabs! Usually the cabs want to wait until they're full before leaving but I asked for one to take us directly to The American Yacht Harbor in Red Hook and while a little reluctant at first, one guy was happy to do it! It did cost a little more and I tipped him well. The ride itself was an adventure. I hung on for my life! We arrived at the American Yacht harbor around 11:30 and were met by Captain Wilson and the first mate Jewel. Jewel was his "friend" visiting from Sweden by way of Lithuania. A great couple. The weather was overcast with a 70% chance of rain. Seas were 5-7 foot! But nothing was going to stop us from see Jost Van Dyke. For those of you who don't know, Jost Van Dyke is located about 5 miles north of St. John in the British Virgin Islands. It's thought of as the last true Caribbean paradise. No high rise hotels. In fact, only one small beachfront cottage hotel! It's known for its beach bars and lazy days. And I do mean true beach bars. Right on the sea. Sand floors. Open to the elements. Kenny Chesney (the superstar country singer) brought attention to Jost in a song back in 2005. The island didn't get electricity until 1992! After giving us a quick tour of the boat (he had the drinks I requested and snacks) we were off. I immediately popped the cap off a Red Stripe beer! The ride was bumpy to say the least but none of us had any problems with seasickness. The boat is very comfortable. A 30' motorized catamaran with twin 250hp outboard motors. Top speed of 50mph! The best looking boat in the harbor! The boat holds 12 people comfortably and we had her all to ourselves. What a sweet ride. We headed to Great Harbour to check into customs first. I had furnished the Captain with all our required information the week before and he had all the papers filled out when we first arrived. All we had to do is sign them and give him our passports. It took about 25 minutes to get to Jost Van Dyke. The Captain did a great job of steering the boat across the waves to avoid the big ups and downs! When we got to Great Harbour we headed to the front of the customs office to "ask" permission to visit their island. After this formality the captain told us we could head down the beach to Foxy's Famous beach bar while he submitted our passports and paperwork. Foxy's is actually rated as one the five best places to spend New Year's Eve in the world! The legend says that there are so many boats anchored that you can walk across the harbor without getting wet! We ordered some of Foxy's famous drinks and spent about 45 minutes there. Very laid back folks. Nobody was in a hurry to do anything! But in a good way. We took some photos and bought some tee-shirts and souvenirs. Walked the beach (hunting shells) back to the boat and headed for Sandy Cay. Sandy Cay is located between Tortola and Jost Van Dyke. It was about a 15 minute ride. It is a deserted 7 acre island with a beautiful white sand beach and plenty of coconut palms. The Captain anchored the boat about 25 yards offshore in about 12 feet of water and we swam to shore. The water is crystal clear and the bottom was sandy. We felt as though we were the first people ever to walk on the beach. Tortola is only a couple miles across the channel and my girls got a kick out of us being in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" home port. I had brought a "dry bag" for our cameras and it worked great. We took lots of photos! We spent about 30 minutes exploring and relaxing and then made the swim back to the boat and headed for White Bay. White Bay is a picturesque bay with pristine white sand and a place where many boats drop anchor. It's the home of several more beach bars. The Soggy Dollar and Ivan's Stress Free bar being two of the near world famous ones in boating circles. We anchored in waist deep water and waded to shore. There are no docks on White Bay. We hit the Soggy Dollar first and ordered lunch and a Painkiller drink. This bar claims to be the inventor of the famous BVI drink and it was great. A blend of white and dark rum, cream of coconut and pineapple juice and sprinkled with West Indian nutmeg. And some secret ingredients also. We insisted on having Captain Wilson and Jewel join us for lunch. Most of us ordered the jerk chicken sandwich and it was delicious. We chilled there for a while. Very relaxing. Then we decided to walk down the beach to visit Ivan's. Ivan's is about a 15 minute brisk walk from the Soggy Dollar and you have to walk up a hill and through a field of ocean rocks to get there so if you go, wear shoes! The Captain and Jewel went back to the boat to take her down to Ivan's and meet us. When we got there it was empty! No electricity was on. There are no doors to the place. We thought it was closed until my wife walked through and out the back and ran into Ivan! He's a mellow island man about 65-70. It was just him and us! He made us all drinks and we talked for 10 minutes. He's good friends with Kenny Chesney and has pictures all over the walls of the bar with him and Kenny. He knew exactly when Kenny was coming back to see him and told me!!!! Sorry but I'm sworn to secrecy!! Took some pictures with Ivan and said our goodbyes to Jost Van Dyke and headed to St. Johns for some sightseeing. We had to be at the Cruz Bay (St. John) customs office by 5:30 and we had about an hour to get there. We decided to tour Cinnamon Bay, Honeymoon Bay, Trunk Bay and the beautiful St. John coastline. We'd been to St. John in 2004 and almost booked a house for a week before we decided on this cruise. We will definitely stay in St. John in the future. Jost Van Dyke is a little too slow for a whole week but we figured that we could stay in St. John for a week and go over to Jost Van Dyke for one night and two days. Get the best of both worlds. Customs went fast and we were in and out in 10 minutes and on our way back to Red Hook in St. Thomas. While there I asked the Customs agent about the ship not having an customs check onboard. He couldn't explain why other then saying because it was a closed loop cruise maybe. All our other cruises have been closed looped. It only took 15 minutes to get back to St. Thomas. We were riding the waves so it wasn't that bumpy at all. We were back at the American Yacht Harbor a little before 6pm. We said goodbye to Captain Wilson and Jewel and Ali was waiting for us in the parking lot. It only took Ali 20 minutes to get us back to Havensight. Traffic was very light. We did some quick shopping (the girls wanted Hooters shirts that said St. Thomas! They had to drag me to Hooters! ) and were back onboard and eating dinner at the buffet a little after 7pm! All and all it was an awesome day trip. Would we do it again? Of course, absolutely, heck yes! Captain Wilson is very informative and was really concerned about us having a good time in light of the weather and sea conditions. Captain Wilson will take you wherever you choose to go. I researched my trip extensively and knew exactly what I wanted to do but if you don't, he can suggest something that I guarantee will leave you satisfied and wanting to do it again! It actually only rained on us for about 5 minutes the whole day. We could see St. Thomas getting pounded by rain around mid afternoon. Nothing was going to stop us from having a blast on Jost Van Dyke and we did. We plan on doing it again next year when we cruise on the RCL Oasis of the Seas. After dinner we went back to the cabin to clean up. The Mickey Utley band was playing country music on the Lido deck stage. They were really good. We decided to come back later and listen to more. It took an hour or so for all four of us to shower and get ready to go out. DD18 headed off to find her new friends. Made a big Ginger Fly and then DD22, DW and I headed back to the Lido deck to listen to the band. Stayed 45 minutes or so and then headed down to Deck 5. We went into the casino and checked out the slots for a while with the girls. Because we were essentially worn out, we decided to call it a night around 10:30pm. A great day! Tomorrow - Saint Maarten! WEDNESDAY - Saint MAARTEN (ST. MARTIN) Arrived in St. Martin right on time this morning. We decided to make this our shopping port so we took our time getting off the ship. We ate breakfast in the buffet and headed off the ship around 9:15am. They are building a new pier right next to the current one and were dredging the bottom (in preparation for Oasis of the Seas later this year - we're booked on her for Nov 2010). Looks like the pier is almost finished. Met up with another CC couple who told us they just found out their ships excursion was cancelled! Guest Services told them "you should have gotten a letter from us"! They didn't! They weren't happy and I don't blame them. We headed to the water taxi to go downtown. Note: the water taxi goes to the marina dock first. More that half the boat got off there not knowing it was not downtown. Stay on the boat and the next stop is downtown. Even if you get off at the marina you're not far from the east end of downtown. We were headed for Rima's store that I had read some much about. "Great discounts. Buy all your islands souvenirs here!". It was about a mile walk through downtown to the west by the Great Salt Pond. Took about 20 minutes. Have you ever been to a beachwear store in any US beach town? The ones that are two stories high and have all the floats out front. Rima's is exactly like this! I was not impressed. Bought a Caribbean map, a couple magnets and a hat! I guess I got some needed exercise though! We walked three blocks south and hit the west end of Back Street. This worked out well as we just walked east and were able to see all the stores. DW was in search of a blue diamond ring. DD22 was looking for the David Yurman store. He is a popular high end American jewelry designer. DD18 just goes along with the flow. Super kid. Rarely asks for anything. Wow, these Indian shop owners are hard sell. The first store that Mary found something she liked, they wouldn't let her leave! Not physically of course. I interceded and we left. Since I "made" DW take a boat excursion on St. Thomas (her beloved shopping Mecca), I felt obligated to go into as many jewelry stores as it would take to find her something she loved. After a few stores we decided to have lunch at the Harbor Cafe. A local place right on the beachfront. A nice relaxing lunch. So relaxing that we had to keep prompting the waitress for our check. Seems she definitely was on island time! Then back to shopping. After about 10 stores she finally decided to purchase a ring from Kay's. The sales guy was great. We ended up buying two pendants, another cheaper ring for DD18 and Mary's precious blue diamond ring. I got 3 free Heinekens! Kay's is on the ships store approved list so that helped. We then found the store that carried David Yurman (Art of Life) and proceeded to purchase the exact ring DD22 Leslie had her heart set on. She graduates from college in December and this was to be a graduation present! More on that later. We wanted to find something for DD18 Cait. We saw a "Ring of Life" diamond pendant at another store but thought it was a little too much. It was a full carat. We kept shopping and found the same piece only a little smaller with ½ carat and bought it. Another graduation present! My girls are spoiled but really deserve it as they've been almost perfect growing up. No problems ever. I think the biggest problem we've ever had was when DD18 had her cell phone taken away at school for texting when she shouldn't have been! It was about 4pm by now and I still wanted to go by the local grocer to search for Dutch and French items. I love doing this. I had researched and saw that Sang's market was on the east end by the marina dock and we headed there. I wanted to get some Gouda and Smoked Gouda cheese. Found that and some other things and then headed to the ship. It's about a mile walk from the grocer to the ship. There is a sidewalk the whole way. We saw Kathi and Danielle at the pier shopping area. Its funny how you run into certain people a lot and then you never see others after the meet and greet. Got to the ship around 5pm. We were sailing at 6pm today. I had purchased some Pomegranate liquor at one of the stores and had it in my backpack. I even told the security scanner about it. He didn't make a comment so I grabbed my backpack and headed on past the liquor checking area! Turns out I never even opened it onboard the ship! We hurried up to our cabin to get ready for our 6pm dinner seating. I was amazed the girls were ready in time!!!! Dinner tonight was good. I had some great conversation with George from New Zealand. We were really fortunate to be seated with such quality people. Our CC friend Kathi told us earlier that Ken and his wife (from Cocoa) had gotten into a loud verbal confrontation with his tablemates. The next night when Ken returned to the table it started up again and he went straight to the Maitre'd and asked to be moved. Some people need to take a chill pill! You're on vacation. Lighten up! Sorry this happened to you Ken. Anyway, the food was fine. Just OK again, nothing spectacular like on Monday night in the Emerald Room. The waiters sang and danced again. DD18 Cait was again asked to dance and she happily obliged. After dinner, we walked over to the art viewing with our tablemates. They were showing Thomas Kinkade works and we love him. Kinkade is known as "America's most-collected living artist". We were interested in a couple of prints but misunderstood the art coordinator. I understood him to say that they were to be auctioned the next day but in actuality you could purchase them on the spot! Found out too late! Oh well! DW and I headed to the photo gallery to look for our recent pictures. While walking around we went into the Formalities shop. It's the shop where you can rent tuxedos or order things for special occasions. I noticed a sign for cakes to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries. We decided to order a "Happy Graduation" cake for DD18 Cait to be delivered after dinner Thursday night. It was only $9.95 and would feed up to 10 people. What a deal! FYI…… they also have bulk candies by the pound if you feel the need to satisfy your sweet tooth! From there we headed to Bar Blue to have a cocktail. It's located just outside the Ebony Cabaret on deck 5. It was about 8pm and it was not open. We went to Bar Blue a couple nights ago around the same time and it wasn't open then either! The Cinn-a-bar piano bar is just across the way from there and we walked in there. We had planned to spend a few hours there when Russell started at 9:15pm but discovered that Wednesdays were his day off! We sat just outside at the Burgundy wine & martini bar and tried Katrina's famed martinis. These weren't your ordinary gin and vermouth martinis. I had a creamy chocolate martini (Bailey's, Grey Goose vodka and cream de cocoa) and DW Mary ordered a coffee martini. Both were good. DD22 and DD18 soon found us and joined us. We were the only people at the bar and had a very enlightening conversation with Katrina the barkeep. She is from Slovakia, formerly part of Czechoslovakia. I asked many questions about her job and general crew life. She told us about a lot of her experiences. How underage kids try to get drinks. One even "borrowed" his father's ship card. She WILL id you if you look underage. So, if you're just over 21 make sure to carry your driver's license with you! On RCL and NCL your ships card tells them if you're of legal drinking age. RCL punches a hole in the cards of kids under 18. She said that they have a crew bar and have parties often. She's learning an Indonesian language and we laughed when she told us about overhearing Indonesian guys making comments about her. What a smart and beautiful lady. We spent about an hour with her. We stopped by the casino bar and listened to Robbin from England sing oldies. He was in a band way back when and we weren't really impressed with his vocal skills. Kinda like listening to a bad Davy Jones (The Monkees) impersonator! Sorry. Decided to call it a night around 10pm and headed off to our cabin. Tomorrow is the first of two sea days and time for relaxation. More to come…. DAY FIVE AT SEA Woke up around 8am. Called and had room service deliver coffee and bagels 30 minutes later. Our two daughters were still sleeping so DW and I had a quiet coffee and did some reading and planning the day. Decided to venture out alone again to find a wireless hotspot. Headed down to deck five and found a comfortable spot outside the casino across from Creams coffee shop. Ordered a latte and started surfing! Creams offers not only coffee but pastries, brownies and chocolate covered strawberries as well. And, I thought, reasonably priced. While pecking away on the laptop, my dining table friend Rick walked by and decided to have seat and we talked for an hour. DW Mary found us as did Rick's wife Gina! Then George and his wife too! Rick had said that they were going to call and make reservations in the Emerald Room for Friday evening. We told them about the "On deck for the Cure" walk at 2pm and they were to join us. We found the girls and had lunch in the buffet. Just cheeseburgers today. Pretty good. Carnival offered a couple tables on the Lido deck with special 2 for $20 tee shirts today. They do this a couple times a week and more in the General store on deck 5. I'd suggest waiting to purchase shirts until the middle of the week to take advantage of these sales. And they put out more and different shirts. We bought a couple. I was at the Ebony Cabaret Lounge for the art auction preview at 1:20. Didn't see the Kinkade's. This is when I found out they were sale last night!!! So, I decided to watch the girls walk for the cure. At 1:45pm everyone headed up to the jogging track on deck 11 for the "On deck for the Cure" walk to benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation. This is such a great foundation. DD22's sorority Zeta Tau Alpha's philanthropy is breast cancer awareness & research and she's heavily involved in all kinds of fund raisers for them. In fact, FYI, Zeta Tau Alpha has the term "Think Pink" copyrighted and uses it in various ways to increase breast cancer awareness. There were about 50 folks on deck mulling around without anyone from Carnival to be seen. Finally someone showed up at the last minute and the walking began. Having torn cartilage in my knee recently, I wasn't able make the walk but…….. I did become the unofficial team photographer. Seems when folks saw me taking pictures about 6-8 people asked if I would take some with their cameras. I was happy to oblige. The walk took about 45 minutes and it was very hot for them. Carnival did offer free fruit punch and water during the walk. Thanks go out to anyone and everyone who takes part in this "close to our heart" cause. Thank you. The girls were covered in sweat and wanted to clean up a bit. I told them to just go jump in the pool and layout! So they did! They both had their Pilates class scheduled for 4pm. They both loved the class and loved the gym. DD22 actually works part time at her college RAC (recreation and activities center- a huge gym/pool/courts/rock climbing wall/track complex) and DD18 has a membership at the local gym. Both gave the gym itself high marks. One disadvantage to booking on the spa deck or a cabin below the spa on the port side would be the loud thuds from folks dropping the free weights. Imagine the sound of the anchor hitting the ship many times a day and evening. The free weight section of the gym is on the port side forward. FYI…. Mary and I made our way back to the cabin so she could clean up and dry off. We decided instead to go to the spa and check out the whirlpool. I made her preshower (Poolman!) It's located in the middle of the gym with glass walls so you can see EVERYBODY in the gym and THEY can see you! It's actually what we in the business call a swim spa. A 14' pool with Badu jets that shoot the water at you simulating a current so it's like swimming upstream. 10 kids between the ages of 12-16 were lounging in it when we arrived. The rules state that no children under 18 can be in the area with adult supervision. Carnival didn't enforce this. They weren't acting badly. Just lounging and talking. Attached to the pool is a 3' x 8' spa. The water bodies are independent of each other so the spa can be heated and the pool not. We shared the spa with a lady and her daughter. It only can fit 4 folks comfortably. Much smaller than expected. And the water temp was only around 95 degrees or so. Lukewarm by spa water standards. We only stayed about 10 minutes and left. Both the men's and woman's sides have both menthol steam rooms and dry heat saunas. These are all free to anyone. I went into both. Rooms not sides! Showers and lockers are available also. You just give the girls at the front desk your ships card and she'll give you a locker key in exchange. The free spa facilities were nowhere near as nice as the ones on the NCL Jewel back in 2006. Each side had their own 8' spa and a unisex pool/spa in the middle along with hot stone chairs to lounge in. And spectacular views out the floor to ceiling windows. Carnival has it situated like you're a caged animal for all to see! Really bad set up IMO. And I forgot to mention the rock waterfall that spills into the lap pool from 6' up that would make it really hard to breathe while swimming laps! What were they thinking???? After cleaning up we headed down to deck five to search for photos again. The capers stated that certain photos would be ditched to make room for newer ones. Carnival does not offer any kind of package deal like RCL or NCL. Only by the piece. We did manage to get a free 5x9 album with our purchase. We tend to purchase over a $100 of photos per cruise but spent ½ that this time. We went in the general store and I purchased some liquor to take home. Four bottles of Baileys Irish Cream and a bottle of Cruzan rum (from the USVI). The prices were just a tad more that in St. Martin. Bought some more tee shirts also. Tonight is the second formal night. Although I wore a suit this past Sunday for the first formal night, I decided to wear Dockers and a Tommy Bahama shirt. With Margaritaville flip flops! What I think is a classy island look. Formal for a beach bum!! HaHa….. Flame on……take your best shot! No lobster on the menu tonight. Dinner was fine. Can't remember what we had! I need to take notes next time!! While walking by the spa on our way to our cabin, I saw a special for a 20 minute neck and shoulder massage, a 20 minute foot/ankle massage and a 20 minute hot stone massage for $99 so we both decided to do it. They scheduled us for 1pm and 1:15pm the next day, Friday. I asked if we could get them together in the same room and was told no! That would be the couples massage for $269. All I wanted was to be side by side. I didn't think it was too much to ask unless they only had one room with two beds and it was occupied. No biggie. We headed for the cabin to freshen up. To me, that means pouring a great big Ginger Fly to take to the piano bar. I like to shoot a little of this and wash it down with a Stella bier! We had decided to make this night our "blowout" night for partying so we could just lounge tomorrow. We made the mistake of doing this last January onboard the Monarch of the Seas on the last night and suffered through 10 hours in a car the next day! Rick and Gina were going to meet us in the piano bar. When we got there we saved a couple seats. It was about 9pm and Russell was there setting up. My six new friends from Ohio (met on the first night there) were there. Another young couple from Chicago was there (also there the first night). We had lovingly named them Cubbie and Cheesehead. He had worn Cubs jersey and she mad no bones that she was a Packer fan! Our new buddy Jim sat next to DW Mary and was celebrating his birthday! It was like a reunion of night one! We had a blast. We danced and sang all night. Singles, duos, and groups. One big happy (and drunk) cruise family!! DD22 Leslie wasn't feeling well and left us around midnight. We didn't get back to the cabin until 3:30am! When DD18 got in around 1am and didn't see us she was worried. LOL…. Now she knows how we feel! DAY SEVEN AT SEA But of course, the sun always rises the next morning and that means the night is over and the headache begins! Not so bad actually. DW Mary awoke first and left the cabin to get coffee and read around 9am. Mary came back a little after 10am and she and DD18 left to go get breakfast. They came back 15 minutes later with food for them & DD22 but nothing for me! DD22 was complaining of seasickness. I think that, combined with some alcohol last night, was causing her the discomfort. She was wrapped up in a ball most of the afternoon! We chilled in the room for a couple more hours and then DW and I headed out. I made it a point to find our room steward first and let him know what was going on. I let him in to give us fresh towels and empty the trash. No need to make the beds since I already did it. Except the one that was occupied! Pour baby. At 1pm Mary and I headed for the spa for our massages. We've never had a hot stone massage before. When the stone is first placed on your skin you'll think it is going to scald you but after 3 seconds a big …AHHHHHH is felt….AHHHHHHH. It was heaven. Especially with a hangover!!! Loved the treatment. Afterwards my masseuse went into selling mode. Like I'm going to spend $60 on some oil and another $55 on lotion! Politely said no thanks and headed to the cabin. Mary told her masseuse that she had sensitive feet and she received 40 of hot stones and no foot massage! Lucky her. Chilled in the room with the still sickly DD22. She decided to forgo her 4pm Pilates class and try and feel better for the big dinner tonight. DD18 went by herself. I wanted to be in the main dining room around 6pm to say our goodbyes and give thanks so we started getting ready when DD18 came back. We had pre booked the Emerald Room for 7pm by in May. My plan was to eat there on Monday and if I didn't think it was worth it, I'd cancel Friday. Since Monday was so good, we kept the reservation. I forgot to mention that while at the piano bar last night Rick told me he'd been waitlisted for dinner tonight in the Emerald Room. I immediately got up and found a house phone and called the Emerald Room and asked to add two more people to my reservation. They asked if 6:30pm would be alright and I, of course, said yes and thank you. Done Deal! We made a point to go to our regular diner table to say goodbye to George and his wife and Rick and Gina's boys. Told our waiters thanks. Tipped the Maître'd and all 6 of us headed up the elevator to the Emerald Room. We arrived at 6:20 and were seated promptly on the starboard side. I thought about asking to be seated on the port side where we were before but didn't. We had the same wine sommelier Nicholas. For servers we had a young lady from Costa Rica I believe and another from Russia. While these two were efficient, it wasn't near as good as the three we had on Monday. I again asked for the cheese tray as an appetizer. This time the server didn't blink and said of course. Rick and I both ordered the 24oz Porterhouse steak. A huge piece of meat! Girls had lobster, prime rib chop and NY Strip and Filet Mignon. DD22 wasn't impressed with her strip. It had a lot of fat on it. Everything else was great. Tonight's dinner lasted 3 ½ hours! WOW! The longest dinner ever! But the time really flew by. Good tablemates with great conversation. Unlike Monday though, we felt at times we were waiting for food. The service wasn't like Monday but still good. But my opinion still holds…..The Emerald Room is awesome and we'll do it again next time onboard Carnival… After dinner it was close to 10pm and we were full and tired. Said our goodbyes and exchanged our addresses and called it a night and went off to pack. Had to have the luggage outside our door by 11pm. Just made it. What a great overall trip. It's over……sigh………off to bed. DAY EIGHT - DISEMBARKING Because I had two more bottles of liquor than allowed, I had to be outside the library between 7am and 7:30am to meet customs. Got there around 7:10 and found a short line. Customs officials showed up at 7:20am and promptly asked questions of everyone and signed off on our customs form. Didn't cost any money. Went really fast. Bring your receipts if you purchased liquor. One man was detained because he stated he purchased some liquor in Nassau and didn't have his receipts. I was back in the room by 7:40 and made sure everyone was up. We left the cabin at 7:50am and headed to the buffet for a quick breakfast. As I left I told our stateroom attendant we'd be back before the 8:30am deadline to vacate the cabin. We also left our luggage out the night before and we were number 11 in order for assisted disembarking. Finished breakfast and got our stuff at 8:25 and gave our two stateroom attendants additional tips for a job well done. They were outstanding. Maybe the best we've had so far. Went down to Guest Services to drop off our comment cards and were called to disembark a few minutes later. We were off the ship by 9am. Grabbed a porter for the luggage. Were in my vehicle heading to Georgia a few minutes later. A very fast disembarking. Good job Carnival. Overall, we had an outstanding trip. Loved the ship. She could've had more shops and a better spa but she's still great. I really enjoyed the younger crowd and party atmosphere. Carnival's reputation as a Fun ship was certainly upheld. We will cruise Carnival again in the future. Thanks for taking the time to read my blog! I'll be posting more pictures later today. Happy Cruisin! Steve Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
This is a review of the 7/18-7/25 Eastern Caribbean sailing of the Carnival Glory. This was our fourth Carnival cruise.  To sum up our cruise, we simply had a great time.  Pre-cruise Port Canaveral is a ways (long ways) from our ... Read More
This is a review of the 7/18-7/25 Eastern Caribbean sailing of the Carnival Glory. This was our fourth Carnival cruise.  To sum up our cruise, we simply had a great time.  Pre-cruise Port Canaveral is a ways (long ways) from our home, so we drove in two days early. Wow, what a marathon of a trip with our 2-yr-old son.  With frequent stops, the trip took us 20 hours.  One stop was Crescent Beach, Florida, so we could see the ocean and play on the beach before it got dark.  It was beautiful there.  All told, we left at 2:00 a.m. Thursday morning and arrived in Cocoa Beach at the La Quinta Inn at around 11:00 p.m.  I booked the cruise package at the La Quinta and it worked well.  The hotel is pretty good for a budget option.  It is close to the beach and it has a nice pool area.  We went to Lori Wilson park Friday which is right up the road from it.  Also on Friday we ate lunch at Florida's Seafood Bar and Grill, shopped at Ron Jon's, and ate dinner at Fish Lips.  Friday night we went down to the Cocoa Beach pier and walked around and looked for crabs on the beach with our son. First Day Saturday Cocoa Beach Shuttle came to pick us up around 11:30 a.m.  We met some nice people on the shuttle bus - a couple who had been on many cruises who were taking their grandkids on a Disney cruise and a younger couple going on their first cruise - the Carnival Glory. Embarkation was a breeze. I was impressed with the process at Port Canaveral compared to the other ports we had embarked at.  Once on the ship we headed to Fish-n-Chips.  It was nice and quiet up there as the crowds had yet to discover it.  I think we ordered nearly every dish and we all had a good time sharing the food.  After lunch we went to check out our room on the Lido Deck - cabin 9260.  Our room was ready and we checked out the "secret deck" down the hallway.  Unfortunately, the door to this deck was locked on Sunday and remained locked the rest of the cruise. The muster drill came and went and we decided to simply explore the ship until dinner.  We had dinner in the dining room and our food was great - this was true for most meals throughout the week. Second Day - Nassau On Sunday we awoke in Nassau.  We had breakfast at the buffet and left the ship.  Our first stop was some shopping and then we took a taxi to Cabbage Beach on Paradise Island.  The beach was beautiful and chairs and tents were available from locals.  After enjoying the beach, we took a taxi back to the straw market for some more shopping. We took our son to Camp Carnival that night so that mom and dad could have some alone time.  This was elegant night and we wanted to have a night out.  We enjoyed our dinner and then went to the show.  After the show we went to the piano bar and to the disco. Russell in the piano bar was wonderful.  He was a good sport and everyone appeared to be having a great time. Third Day - Sea Day Monday was a downer as our son was sick all day.  We took turns venturing out of the cabin for food and drinks and a break.  Thankfully that night he began perking up and feeling better. Unfortunately, I don't have much to report for that day. Fourth Day - St. Thomas Tuesday was St. Thomas and that meant an island tour with EEE Tours.  Henry our guide was waiting for us in the terminal area with a sign.  He is a very pleasant man who obviously loves the island and his job.  St. Thomas is a beautiful island - it reminded me somewhat of Hawaii. Henry explained a lot of the history of St. Thomas, talked about the current culture, showed us some wonderful views, and gathered different fruits and grasses for us to see and smell.  He then took us to Sapphire Beach. Sapphire Beach was nice, but it did have some rocks.  It was not bad, but I mention it only as a caution.  We rented a chair and enjoyed some more beach time.  While at Sapphire Beach, Henry left us with Papa Bear (Air Force 1 Tours) so that he could go help another tour operator whose bus had broke down.  Unfortunately, our stroller was on Henry's bus and neither Henry nor us thought about it until it was too late.  Papa Bear called Henry for us and Henry brought our stroller to the cruise terminal.  Papa Bear refused to leave us until Henry arrived with our stroller.  Both men are very nice and I would recommend a tour with either of them. We got back on the ship too late for our dinner time (thanks to anytime dining that won't happen again), so we ate at the buffet.  We went to another show and had a great time. Fifth Day - St. Maarten Wednesday we were in St. Maarten/St. Martin.  We took a cab to Orient Beach and rode together with a nice family.  The cabs both there and back did not charge for our son.  St. Maarten did not appear as lush as St. Thomas.  The cab driver told us it does not get as much rain. Our driver dropped us off at the Bikini Beach area and we rented a chair and umbrella.  This beach is gorgeous - probably the best one of the five we went to on this trip.  We had a lot of fun relaxing and playing in the sand and in the ocean.  Afterwards we thought about going to Philipsburg, but we were tired and went back to the ship. We enjoyed dinner in the dining room. Sixth and Seventh Day - Sea Days The last two sea days we relaxed by the kiddie pool, shopped, went to whatever shows were going on, and ate in the dining room each night.  My wife got the full body massage at the spa and she liked it.  On our last night our son did a little dance near the casino.  There was a guitar player in that area each night and when we walked by our son started dancing and he had the "stage" to himself. It was cute and he got an applause. Disembarkation At disembarkation we stayed on the ship until they called the last numbers.  This made it much easier to get off and we will do this again in the future. We didn't have to fight any crowds and it was easy to find our luggage.  We took a Cocoa Beach shuttle back to our vehicle and began the drive home. Final Thoughts In summary, this was another fun Carnival cruise.  The ship did feel a bit crowded at times, but nothing too bad.  The Glory was a nice change from the Holiday.  There is an added value to being on a newer shi with more options.  Our son loved riding the glass elevators and he got a kick out of the voice telling you what deck you were at.  This was my first time to use the gym on a ship and I was impressed with the options.  We also enjoyed all of the live music taking place across the ship.  It was fun to stop and dance a little bit throughout the day and night. My only unpleasant experience was sitting with a man at breakfast who complained that "if you ever sailed on Royal Caribbean, you would never sail again on Carnival". I wanted to ask the idiot why then he was on Carnival? I made a comment to shut him up and we finished an awkward breakfast. Most of our meals were good.  I didn't care for the rice at the Asian station and I didn't like the crab cake in the dining room, but everything else was great.  I think I could eat every meal at Fish-n-Chips - the place is simply awesome.  In the dining room, the salmon on the last night was very good, as was the cappuccino pie.  My wife loved the chocolate melting cake, as usual. Our service throughout the cruise was excellent. Our cabin steward Roy always took care of our room quickly and kept my ice chest full of ice.  Our waiter Robert was a little pushy with his dining suggestions, but he went out of his way to entertain our son and we appreciated that.  Most employees I saw had a smile on their face and said hello, which always makes things brighter. A definite thumbs up for the Carnival Glory. Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
We are writing this review driving home from our seventh Carnival cruise.  Having sailed the western Carribean the past two summers, we looked forward to sailing the eastern side again.  We were not disappointed!We stayed at the Raddison ... Read More
We are writing this review driving home from our seventh Carnival cruise.  Having sailed the western Carribean the past two summers, we looked forward to sailing the eastern side again.  We were not disappointed!We stayed at the Raddison Port Caniveral and took advantage of their cruise package.  Our room and the pool were beautiful.  We rode the hotel shuttle and were onboard by 12:30.We would like to thank Cruise Critic member Tammie for organizing a meet and greet where she supplied us all with name tags and door signs.  What a nice way to meet fellow cruise critic members and passengers.The Glory continues to be clean and well-maintained.  The staff and crew were always friendly and helpful.  "Soup", our cabin steward always called us by name and kept our cabin spotless and ice bucket full.  Our servers in the dining room, George and Joni, went out of their way to make our dining experience enjoyable.  The choices were plentiful and the food excellent like always.  We greatly appreciate the different dining choices on the Lido deck every day... buffet, fish and chips, deli, oriental, pizza, hot dogs, burgers and fries.Nassau:  We enjoyed several hours of shopping in the straw market and finished our afternoon being entertained by partying passengers at Senor Frogs.St. Thomas:  We followed advise from this website and spent the day snorkling, swimming and sunning at Secret Harbor Beach Resort.  We had a great lunch at Blue Moon Cafe on the beach.St. Maarten:  Taxied at Orient Beach and paid $14 to rent two nice beds, and umbrella plus two free drinks.  We had a wonderful lunch at Andy and Cheryl's Baywatch...where everyone was treated like an old customer.  Orient Beach continues to be one of our favorite beaches.We enjoyed the Mickey Utley Band so much.  Live music is one of our favorite forms of entertainment.  They are very talented and play with a lot of energy.One minor complaint is the lack of an adult pool.  With three full size pools, it would be nice to have the aft pool for adults only as on other Carnival ships.  Debarkation:  We did the self-assist which went very smoothly and were off the ship in 45 minutes.We are already planning to take the same cruise next summer on the Carnival Dream. Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
Background:  My husband, myself and our 4-year old son cruised on the Glory on 7/18-7/25 and also spent 6 days at Disneyworld.  This was our second cruise, both on Carnival.  We had a great time and absolutely loved the Glory and the ... Read More
Background:  My husband, myself and our 4-year old son cruised on the Glory on 7/18-7/25 and also spent 6 days at Disneyworld.  This was our second cruise, both on Carnival.  We had a great time and absolutely loved the Glory and the ports of call.    Embarkation/Disembarkation:  We arrived at the pier later than planned at 12:30 but we were on the ship by 1:15.  For disembarkation, we had number 25 and was off the ship by 9:45.  Port Canaveral was very efficient for both.      Ship:  We loved the Glory and all its amenities.  Our first cruise was on the Pride, which we loved too but we both agreed that we loved the bigger conquest class ship.  It just seemed like there were more places to go to and we didn't even see them all.   The theme of the decor was colors and it was very pretty and not too gaudy.  The promenade was a great central location with most places accessible from there.  The shops, casino, sushi, creams coffee shop, arcade, and at least 3 bars/clubs were off the promenade.  It did get crowded at times, but not too bad.  The casino was huge (about twice as big as the Pride) and Camp Carnival was about 3 times bigger than on the Pride.  The service was excellent from the dining room and lido restaurant, to the beverage hosts and our room steward.    Food:   Unfortunately, we only ate in the dining room once on the first formal night and the lobster and shrimp was great.  We didn't really connect with our tablemates and wanted more alone time, so we never went back.  We ate the rest of the time in the buffet and we thought the food was very good to excellent.  There were so many choices:  pizza, grille, deli, nations, regular buffet section, fish-n-chips, pasta station, and oriental.  The lines could get long at times, but that's to be expected.  I loved that there was chocolate melting cake at the buffet at least 3 times that week.  The chocolate buffet during lunch on the last day was amazing.  The specialty coffee was really good, especially the iced mochaccino.  The only thing we missed was the fruit punch.  It wasn't available all week.   Room:  We had a balcony cabin on the upper deck, #6323.  Since it was almost right above the casino, we had concerns about noise but it wasn't noisy at all.  Our neighbors were noisy some nights...some kids next door were having a jam session on the balcony and it was really loud.  But other than our neighbors, we couldn't hear anything from the casino or the deck below.  It was the standard balcony room.  Next time, I would get a balcony on the other side of the ship since the views would have been better while in port.    Activites/Entertainment:  We saw the magic show and two productions shows, Living in America and Just Rock.  The magic show was more comedy than magic.  I would skip Living in America, and Just Rock was worth it.  We also saw the marriage show which was hilarious.  We spent a few hours everyday in the Casino which was big and had more than 12 tables available.  There was blackjack, Let it Ride, Caribbean stud, three card poker, roulette, and another poker table.  Also lots of slot machines from pennies to $5 machines.  I hit a $625 jackpot on a quarter I Dream of Jeannie machine.  That helped recoup my losses and then some.  We also spent a day using the spa's free facilities, the sauna, steam room, and Jacuzzi which was really nice.  The sauna and steam rooms had views of the ocean, and the Jacuzzi had a pretty waterfall.  The Jacuzzi was really small and would only hold 2-3 persons.  We also used the pools and water slide on the last day.  The slide was so much fun and our son was able to ride it by himself.  He loved it.  We also used the arcade a few days which had lots of games and 3 hockey puck tables.  Our son loved that too.      Passengers:  Lots of families and kids.  Most seemed to be in their 30's and 40's.  We didn't run into any rude guests.  Disney on the other hand, the guests were very rude and pushy (not Disney's fault of course).   Camp Carnival:  Camp Carnival was awesome and our son loved it and wanted to spend every minute there.  They had lots of great activities.  There were a few activities that included face painting, build-a-bear, color a t-shirt, color a backpack, Pirate fest, bug night, movies, pajama party, etc.  He absolutely loved it and cried the first few nights when we picked him up because he wanted to stay longer. There was one concern when we had dropped him off one afternoon.  We watched him for a few minutes and saw this one girl scratch his face and also another boy's face.  There were 3 counselors there and not one of them seen it.  I called my son back and told him to stay away from that girl.  But other than that, the activities were great and our son loved it.   Nassau:  We had planned on going to the British Colonial Hilton.  The boards stated that it was $20 for day passes, but when we got there the prices had gone up.  It's now $40 for adults and $20 for kids, with a $30 food credit for adults and $10 food credit for kids.  We decided to pay it since we had no backup plan.  We were there for only 2.5 hours.  Just an fyi, they serve breakfast to 1030am and don't open for lunch until 12pm.  We were planning on going to the Straw Market at 12, so luckily the host was able to order us some food early.  But I just wanted to caution folks about the limited hours for food.  The beach was nice, clear and warm with chairs and umbrellas included.  They had 3 kayaks available which were included with the passes and some other water toys.  I don't think we would do that again for that price.      St Thomas:  We went to Coki beach and I would definitely recommend it.  We caught a taxi and shared a van with others  and the cost was $9pp one-way.  The taxi came back to pick us back up at a designated time.  We spent 3 hours there and we rented 2 chairs ($7 each) and an umbrella ($4).  The snorkeling was awesome.  We brought dog biscuits to feed the fish, and there was so many fish.  Some folks on the board stated that they didn't feel safe there, but we were fine.  I just wouldn't leave your valuables on the beach unattended.  They have lockers for rent, or you could have one person stay and watch the stuff while the rest of you swim.    St Martin:  We got the all-day water taxi pass for $6 a person and went to the boardwalk area in Phillipsburg.  The had lots of shopping, and was cheaper than the shopping area by the ship.  We then caught a taxi for $20 for the three of us to go to Orient beach. The driver dropped us off at the Bikini beach section.  It was about $18 for 2 chairs and 1 umbrella.  The restaurant had a really nice section of the beach.  The water was beautiful, but the water was a little rough...2-3 foot waves but it didn't bother us.  The food at the Bikini restaurant was very expensive and everything was listed in Euros so you paid even more with US dollars.  There was changing rooms and a shower, which didn't work while we were getting ready to go but started working afterwards.  I walked the length of the beach towards the nude section and it seemed as you progressed that the prices for chairs/umbrellas got cheaper and the size of the beach/sand in front of the restaurants got smaller.  I really liked the Bikini and Kakao sections the best.  There was Jet skis and parasailing offered all along the beach.  I saw that parasailing was $30 a person which seemed like a good price.  We really enjoyed our day at Orient.       Overall, we really loved the Glory and the Eastern Caribbean ports and would not hesitate to sail her again. 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Sail Date July 2009
This is my first review and might be a bit lengthy.  But all of these reviews have been so helpful to us in preparing so I want to be thorough.Myself, DH, and our two boys (11 and 7) were onboard for the July 4th sailing on the Glory.  ... Read More
This is my first review and might be a bit lengthy.  But all of these reviews have been so helpful to us in preparing so I want to be thorough.Myself, DH, and our two boys (11 and 7) were onboard for the July 4th sailing on the Glory.  My mother and father also joined us.  This was our 5th cruise - all with Carnival.  We drove down the day before from South Carolina.  We stayed at the Residence Inn at the port.  It was a fantastic location.  We did the park and cruise deal and they had a suite that would work well for the 6 of us.  They arrange a shuttle for you to the pier for $6/person round trip.  On paper, it was a great deal when you figured in the cost of parking at the port.  But we were not entirely satisfied with the hotel.  The room itself was spacious enough, but it would never cool down enough.  We walked in, set our bags down, turned on the A/C and went to dinner.  When we checked out the next morning the A/C was still running but not doing much good.  It was bearable, but quite warm.  The room also smelled very musty and dirty.  If I had to do it all over again, I'd probably find another hotel in the same area that does park and cruise.  (The shuttle service was fantastic; early on the pickup at the hotel and we waited maybe 4 minutes at the port to return to the hotel.  They used Travelynx.)Embarkation - Fantastic.  Porters took the bags right off the shuttle.  Walked into the terminal at 11:10 and we were on Lido by 11:50.  It was the 4th of July and the port staff were waving flags and had red, white and blue tophats.  Maybe we just got lucky, but it was alot of fun.  The staff seemed so happy.  They were having fun, and the 30 minute wait was enjoyable.  Absolutely no problems; could not have gone smoother.  Ship - I read the horror stories about rust, worn carpets, cracked tiles, etc.  I will say I am not an overly critical person.  I'm not hard to please.  But I found the ship looked to be in fantastic shape.  Normally, I would overlook those issues.  But because I read so much about them, I looked for them.  Didn't see anything.  I did see some very minor rust on the hull at one spot.  But she was in tip top shape.  The crew does a fantastic job in keeping her in such great condition.  As for the layout, I didn't have any trouble with it.  I understand what some say about decks 3 & 4 - not being able to walk the entire ship.  I do have a good sense of direction.  I had no problems navigating the ship by dinner time on embarkation day.  Again - could not find a thing to complain about the ship.  We enjoyed the colors theme with all of the different lounges/public areas.  The lighting in several areas were unique and well done.  I do want to note - I had read a contentious thread on one of these boards about a paint smell on deck two aft.  I was very worried as that's where we were staying.  Towards the end of the cruise, we did experience a faint smell of paint, primer or some other smell like that.  It did seem a little stronger around the aft elevators.  But this was almost imperceivable.  Again - another thing I was looking for. Service - Top notch.  Probably the best we've had in all five cruises.  Ryan was our Cruise Director.  He was fun and seemed to interact with the passengers more than most directors that I've experienced.  The stewards - never had a bad one.  We had Redi.  This was his last week on the ship; he was going home to Indonesia at the end of this cruise.  He was awesome!  Always just wanting to make sure everything was perfect for us.  He was very kind and very genuine.  They work so hard and I can't say enough about not only the job they do but the smiles they keep on their face.  The wait staff in the Platinum dining room:  Jorge was our waiter.  He was VERY efficient and I know this is a matter of personal preference - but he had the right amount of conversation with you.  He'd talk about the next day's dinner, what our plans were for the next port, etc.  He gave us some great tips.  But he was never too talkative.  Great guy and really enjoyed and appreciated him.  Even the waiters we had for breakfast (they are different waiters, it's open seating) were awesome.  My youngest son is not a morning person.  They went well out of their way to get a smile out of him.  Bar service was fantastic.  In the past, we've had some indifferent bartenders when we flash those fountain cards.  Not here.  In fact, our bar waiter in the dining room always made sure we had a full glass of Coke or whatever we wanted on the first day and any day thereafter.  Awesome, awesome service.  A special mention of the pursers desk.  When my 11 year old lost his room key in the arcade, he was panicked.  He went to the pursers desk and he could not believe how kind they were.  They even replaced his fountain card without us having to pay for a new one.  Food - Again, I'm not an overly critical person.  And we did eat alot on Lido, even for some dinners.  But the food was fantastic.  I've read alot about complaints about portion size.  Our first morning, I ordered an omelette, sausage, and a bagel.  Christopher, our waiter, said no - you need the works.  He brought pancakes for all of us and another side of bacon.  You cannot go hungry on this ship!  If you like seafood, be sure to find Fish n Chips on deck 10.  There are three grills that serve burgers, hot dogs, chicken tenders, nachos, etc. for most of the day.  A 24 hour pizza stand (best pizza I've had on Carnival).  A deli that's open very late (11PM, I believe).  And of course the grand buffet on Lido.  They also have a pasta station which would make you a pasta plate with marinara or alfredo sauce when you ask for it.  (VERY good!)  On the last sea day - they had a chocalte buffet.  Tons of chocolate desserts as well as a chocolate fountain for fondue.  The menus in the dining room have not changed much in the past couple years to my knowledge.  I think they do a great job because every night, there is at least one thing there that someone has a craving for.  And of course there are three 24-hour ice cream stands!  What really surprised me was the lack of a long line on Lido!Passengers - This was our first cruise over the summer so we were expecting the worst with kids.  And there were ALOT of kids on this cruise.  Really though, for the most part, that was not a bad thing.  As I said, there were really no lines for food on Lido ALL WEEK!  I attribute this to alot of kids eating at off-hours.  I may be completely off base with that, but I've never had a week where we did not wait in line just to get to the plates.  For the most part, the kids were well-behaved.  There were a few annoying issues.  I think, for some of these kids, it must have been their first time seeing an elevator.  For the first few days, they'd ride up and down the elevators just for fun.  And they seemed to congregate in groups.  It was probably the 12-15 year old groups.  They'd stand around in groups of 20 and think they ran the ship.  They were not really bothering anyone, they just had this mob mentality.  But - I think that's just the age.  As I said, minor annoyances.  My major complaint for this cruise though is with the passengers.  I've seen it on every cruise and this was no exception.  And we did not let a few bad apples ruin our vacation.  But common courtesy could go a long way.  I see passengers just pushing their way through a line without even a simple excuse me.  I've seen passengers berate staff - one woman stood about 20 feet away from a steward and asked in a quiet voice where she could find the next launderette.  I could barely hear her and I was next to her.  She then proceeded to get in the stewards face and yell at him for not answering her.  I know the poor man could not have possibly heard her.  Just one example of several that I witnessed.  As I said, minor issues and nothing that affected me directly.  But common courtesies could take you a long way.Activities/Entertainment - I can only speak to the sea days, but I was glad to see Carnival updated some of their activities.  The "game show" type shows have been refreshed and were hysterical.  There was always something to do.  The Welcome Aboard show was even updated and was quite funny.  (Great job by the Cruise Director.)  We did not attend either production show.  I don't have anything bad to say about them, they just are not my cup of tea.  I'd sooner go listen to live music or a comedian.  We saw two comedians.  Lewis Nixon - good "PG" show, pretty good "R" show.  JR McCollum - missed his "PG" show.  Caught the "R" show and we laughed our butts off.  This one was a bit more racy than Mr. Nixon.  But the material was pretty good.  We did catch the Justin Illusion show.  Mixed reviews on him - alot of dancing, not a ton of "magic".  We sat along the side.  Tip - if you don't want the illusion ruined, don't sit on the sides.  We went to Karaoke two nights.  One night was really good, the other not so much.  The host there was not overly energetic.  We've had better hosts.  We spent a good deal of time listening to the music.  We spent several nights in the Ivory Lounge on deck 4 listening to the Mickey Utley Band.  If you like Rock/Country, he was fantastic.  He's doing a 4-week stint to promote his first album coming out this fall.  We really enjoyed his music.  My mother and father spent nearly every night at the Casino Bar listening to Robbin Cooke playing Oldies music (50s and some 60s).  If that's your thing, my father thought he was the best thing since sliced bread.  We also caught a little bit of Russell in the piano bar.  Every night he had a packed house, but we just didn't get into it this time.  We really enjoy the game shows - Battle of the Sexes (which was updated), The Glory Game Show, the Newlywed Game (the name escapes me)... all hysterical.  I also enjoyed the talks Ryan gave about life aborad the ship.  He opened it up to any and all questions and he answered them all.  Very infomative.  And again - seems like a very genuinely nice guy - not necessarily spouting off corporate-approved answers.  Don't miss the water slide and we also took advantage of the putt putt course on deck 12 midship.  We also attended the first Murder Mystery meeting but we never did keep up with it.  We just didn't have enough time.  We didn't attend any of the Lido deck activites, i.e. hairy chest, ice carving, etc, but it was well-attended and everyone seemed to enjoy.  Casino - Gambling just isn't our thing.  My husband planned to spend $30 in slots.  He was up $40 before the last sea day when he lost all but $20.  Nice casino and the smoke wasn't as overpowering as it was on other ships.  Nassau - We had planned to go to British Colonial Hotel and take advantage of their day passes.  We made the 15 minute walk.  We read on the boards before we left that they were $20/person and you had full use of their beach.  But little did we know they'd change their rates two days before we were to arrive.  They went up to $40/person.  The $40 included a $30 credit for food.  Well, we had planned to eat lunch on the ship since we had to be back on board by 1:30.  So what was supposed to be $120 for day passes - they wanted $240.  We declined to pay it.  Certainly, they are well within their right to change their prices.  And some people may find that to be a fair deal.  But we weren't prepared to shell out that kind of money for a few hours on the beach.  I also learned that the $30 credit does not cover tips.  We also did not get off the ship until about 9:30, knowing we were going to walk to a beach.  So changing plans and going to Sheraton (as we had originally planned) was not going to work with just a few hours.  We opted to walk through the streets and shop for the typical tourist stuff.  The prices were pretty cheap for t-shirts and such.  We got back on board and tried to make it up to our disappointed boys with the pools and waterslide.  I think it's our fault for putting all our eggs in one basket.St. Thomas - This was our second visit.  We took a tour the last time we were here.  We made plans to go to Magens Bay.  We got off the ship and walked through the Havensight shops to the taxi stand.  We were asked where we wanted to go, we told them and we were on our way in less than five minutes.  It's $10 each way.  Taxi rates are regulated.  In addition there is a $4/person charge to enter the beach.  Children under 12 are free to enter the beach.  This was the highlight of the cruise for our kids.  It was perfect.  The weather was fantastic.  It was not too crowded (even with many ships in port).  The water is INCREDIBLY calm.  The kids loved the little fish that would swim all around you in the shallow water.  They had lounge chairs for rent ($7), snorkel equiment (about $18, I think), floats (not sure about cost).  All of the rentals required a refundable deposit up front.  There are no umbrellas on the beach but there is enough shade along the sand.  They also have nice picnic areas.  They have a stand that sells drinks, burgers, hot dogs, etc.  Cokes were $2.  But I thought the food was kind of high - $9 for a burger.  We just had drinks there.  The taxi driver offered to pick us up if we'd tell her a time.  She was there - right on time waiting for us.  We also asked her to stop at Udder Delight (a milkshake stand that makes some good alcoholic shakes as well "normal" shakes).  We forgot about the stop on the way back - she didn't.  She waited about 10 minutes for us to order and get the shakes and then took us back to the ship.  Our plan was to come back off the ship after cleaning up and head up to Paradise Point to catch the sunset but we never made it.  The sunset was at 6:58 and we had to be back on board by 7:30.  Didn't want to cut it that close.  We did shop in the Havensight area some.  St. Maarten - This was our first visit so we wanted to do a tour.  We chose Bernard's Tours.  $35/person.  Slim was our driver.  It was a perfect tour.  They took us to Rima's.  They touted it as the place where all the vendors buy their merchandise and that we'd find everything there at a 25% discount.  They lied.  We found most things at a 50% discount!  Lots of clothing.  Tourist trinkets.  You name it, they had it, and cheap.  Spent 20 minutes there.  Then we went to Sunset (or Maho) Beach to watch the planes land over our head.  We were supposed to only be there 20 minutes.  But our driver said we should wait another 5 minutes.  There was a big plane coming in just a few minutes.  It was awesome.  Not a 747 but a big commercial airline.  Something you'd want to experience.  Now I'd caution you on something you don't want to experience.  When there's a big DANGER sign, take the time to read it.  You can be blown away by the jetwash on takeoffs.  We witnessed several people being blown 20 feet back and one got blown all the way to the water.  That sand blast cannot feel good!  We then went to the French side and stopped at Marigot.  We bought some tasty (but expensive) French pastries.  Most things on the French side are Euro.  But hey, they were authentic!  We then went to Orient Bay - a beautiful beach.  Also a cloting optional beach.  Slim let us out right by Pedros, a little restraunt with pretty good food.  But he showed us the dividing line - a rock in the sand.  If you go to the right - all bets are off.  Clothing (all clothing, tops and bottoms) are optional.  To the left, it's only topless.  And I did witness one tourist that felt he did not have to obey the unwritten rule.  He was chased down and told to put his bottoms on.  We opted to stay to the left.  It was different, for sure.  But I think that's part of the experience.  But we were also grateful that we decided to leave the kids with Camp Carnival.  Then it was back to the ship.  We stopped at several overlooks and took pictures.  Slim was very informative and kind to a fault.  They provided free rum punch, beer, sodas and waters.  He made sure at every opportunity we were not thirsty!   Bernard, the owner, checked on us several times throughout the tour.  I cannot say enough about how wonderful the tour was!  They are flexible to do what the group wants to do.  And they stay abreast of traffic (which seems to be an issue particularly on the Dutch side) and change as necessary.  Just a GREAT tour.  There is a very nice shopping area in the port area.  Not sure about the prices there, but a very nice area.  No one jumping at you to braid your hair.  Disembarkation - Sad!  Didn't want it to end.  We opted, for the first time, to put our bags out the night before.  We always did self assist.  But we planned to stay for the shuttle launch later that day so we were in no hurry to get out.  The whole process was seamless.  We ate breakfast in the Platinum Dining Room at 8AM, fully expecting to be rushed out of there without good service.  Again - pleasantly surprised.  We had a relaxing meal with fantastic service.  We eventually made our way to deck 3 at about 9AM.  We were waiting for the shuttle to the hotel by 9:30 or so.  No luck on the space shuttle launch though; it was scrubbed.Again - sorry for the length of the review.  If you have any questions that I can help with, email me.  But we could not be happier with how this cruise went.  We didn't think any cruise would surpass our first on the Miracle.  This one may have done it. Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
Carnival Glory Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.4
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 5.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.9
Enrichment 5.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 4.1
Rates N/A 4.3

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