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6 Port Canaveral (Orlando) to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

We have previously traveled on NCL and really enjoyed ourselves. We have never sailed with RCCL before but, we heard many wonderful things, so we decided to try Freedom Of The Seas. That was the first mistake. EMBARKING: When we ... Read More
We have previously traveled on NCL and really enjoyed ourselves. We have never sailed with RCCL before but, we heard many wonderful things, so we decided to try Freedom Of The Seas. That was the first mistake. EMBARKING: When we embarked at 11AM, we were told our stateroom would be ready by 3 PM, it wasn't ready until 5PM and there was no announcement to let us know our room was ready. It consisted of us going up to our room and checking periodically. Even at 5 PM we still didn't have all our bags. by 6 PM we received our last bag (we had 4 total). EVERYONE REPORT TO YOUR MUSTER STATION: Our emergency drill was held outside, in 90* degree heat(F*.)It was delayed because people decided to casually waltz in 30 minutes after it was scheduled. We felt like sardines standing in line waiting for people to arrive. The actual demonstration was short and to the point. STATEROOM: It was spacious, had lots of closet space and the bath/shower are was lovely. The bed was comfortable, the pillows were not. Our bed sheets had a giant yellow stain right on the front. We asked out attendant to change it out. TV: The television had maybe 14 channels. 8 of them were in other languages which played recently released movies like Harry Potter part2, Captain America and the Help. These movies were available to the English speaking patrons only at specific times once a day, while the other channels that had these same movies in different languages, played one right after the other. On the English channels, the movie channel as mentioned above, we also had the option of the E! channel, some guy selling Jewelry, a channel about traveling to Coco Cay (we never made it, the waters were too rough)and renting equipment. The cruise channel which showed what to do on the cruise and the channel which showed where we are on the map. Oh, also the pay per view channel which charged $11 a movie. THE FOOD: The windjammer's food was barely mediocre. My husband and father in law love to eat, but they kept changing out the food, thinking the next plate would be better. We would end up with 2 or 3 plates with unfinished anything due to the bland food. Be careful if you have any food allergies. The people in "chef" hats don't know what's in the food. Find someone with a red coat right away and he/she will guide you to what you can eat. Now, the Chophouse was delicious hands down. worth the up-charge. The Main dining room was good. The waitstaff was very attentive. My recommendation is ask for KUMAR. You will not be disappointed. Fine dining at a 4 star restaurant. The pizza shop, the coffee shop, the ice cream shop were meh. Nothing to writ home about. $$$ HEY BARTENDER! BARTENDER?: They were severely understaffed when it came to the bars. One guy per 20-30 people. We waited almost 20 minutes to get a drink. Each bar varied the recipes and not one drink was consistent with the other. The didn't have Stoli Vodka on the entire ship even though their recipes at the bar called for them. wish they had a make your own drink station and charge by the oz. RUN, WALK, WATCH OUT! The running track on the top deck was a great idea, from 6AM-8AM and then everyone would start walking on it and it made running a run, dodge, walk, stop jog in place, kinda run situation. People weren't mindful of the runners. HERE'S JOHNNY! Entertainment was disappointing. This ship doesn't have music. They have a jumbotron which played 13 year old children's music on a whispering level, the Caribbean band which came up to play lasted a total of 20 minutes. The Spanish band lasted 20 minutes, the Jazz band lasted 20 minutes, oh did I mention that these were all on separate days? You had to constantly chase the bands so you can catch them playing for the 20 minutes. The movies that played in the small theater reminded me of watching it on a 1980's big screen TV. Those movies played at the same time as the bands, so you either caught a 20 minute set with the band, or a movie with a bad screen. If you are 21, going to the Crypt would be ideal. If you are older than that, stay away. FloRider is great for 10 minutes of watching the staff pull tricks, and then there are the regular people falling. IN CONCLUSION: I would never set foot on the Freedom again, not even if they paid me to go. Giving RCCL one more try with the Oasis in 2013. If this one is as bad as the Freedom, we are washing our hands with this cruise line. We felt bored almost the entire time. You can lay out and tan by the freezing cold pool, or lay out by the running track, or lay out by the hot tub, or lay in your bed. The elevators were slow. by day 5 we couldn't wait to go home and back to work. By day 6 we were frustrated, by day 7 we were happy that this bland experience was finally over! Read Less
Sail Date March 2012
Where to start! I will walk you through our trip and some pros and cons as I remember them.Departure day: We prearranged Laura's Shuttle Service to pick us up at our hotel that morning. They had a mix up and forgot us. Luckily we ... Read More
Where to start! I will walk you through our trip and some pros and cons as I remember them.Departure day: We prearranged Laura's Shuttle Service to pick us up at our hotel that morning. They had a mix up and forgot us. Luckily we scheduled the pickup early enough so that we had time to called them and still get picked up in plenty of enough time to make it to the ship. At this point we really didn't mind the extra wait because it was 80 degrees (only 25% back home) and we were soaking up the sun. We arrived at Cape Canaveral with time to spare and the porters unloaded our luggage. They took it straight to the room for us. Even though there are signs everywhere that states tipping in not required, the porter handling our baggage pressured us for a tip before we could even get our wallet out. We tipped him $5 hopping to see our luggage again. The line to check in and get on the ship was very long but the staff was very efficient and it only took us about 10 minutes. They issue you a room card that serves as a ship charge card so there is no need to carry cash. From there we were walking toward our first security check point. They are very careful to make sure your are on the right ship, your not carrying anything dangerous or illegal, and that you know where you are going. The hand out maps and point out navigational tips to make traversing the ship easy.Once on board we purchases a souvenir mug and sticker for our room card that allows passengers unlimited pop (or soda) for the entire cruise ($40). Our ticket prices included only water, tea, coffee, and juice. We headed straight for the upper deck grabbed an umbrella drink (purchased with our card) and joined the send off party that was in full swing. There were many people on shore waving to use and several dolphins were playing around the boat. The cruise to our first destination seemed like a blur. No, not due of the awesome tropical drinks, but do to the excitement and energy of the day. There were Broadway quality shows, many different style bars and clubs, pools, hot tub, spas, and more. Not to mention other activities the cruise director had arranged. We slept hard that night. By the way the cabin was wonderful, there was very little noise, and the Stuarts freshened it up 3 times daily with cute towel animals like you see on TV. The also have a safe for you to place you valuables in. Our first stop was Coco Beach (see below). For our evening dinning experience we chose the scheduled dinning time of 6PM. This (in my opinion) is the thing that I will remember most about the cruise. The formal dinning experience is the best ever! From the first night our waiter Mede ('mid - day') learned and memorized not only our names but our preferences. He and a team of support waiters treated us like royalty. At first I thought the portions were small but they kept coming. If you left feeling anything other than satisfied it is because you did not ask for more. They even customised my dinners at my request to add or remove an entree or spice I was not fond of. We also had a table by the window and were treated to a beautiful sunset each night. By the way, even though you sign up for this you may chose to just grab a pizza from the pizza shop, get room service, or dine at the buffet for no attentional charge.Traveling to the next port was no different than the first. You are spend more time trying to decide what not to do and when to rest. The ship has many professional performers that rival any performance I have seen on land. And the crew can be generally found performing multiple duties. You waiter may be singing, carving ice sculptures, or greeting you down main street. Yep they have a street down the middle of the ship with shops and stuff! Our second stop was Saint John's (see below).The last port was St. Martin (see below). The last couple days we spent on ship. We finally started getting board near the end. We were missing our children and partied out. We would have preferred some more intellectual stimulation but found contentment in soaking up the sun with a good book. I did try the surfing, bingo, and joined the dodge ball competition though.Getting off the ship was the same as getting on. The porters help with your bags (asked for a tip) and we road the shuttle back to our hotel. We arrive back in Michigan thankful for the warm 40 degree weather.Also we chose to link our room key to our visa/debit card and our purchases were charged daily. On your room TV they have a channel that will show you all of the charges posted to your card. If you think you may have lost your card have to turned off and reissued immediately.Be careful about what you do. The ship video tapes public events and sells CDs as part of the cruise experience. You may find that someone may have posted some of these events on their face book page.Lastly, My wife and I were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. We had been so wrapped up in our lives before this that we had grown distant from one another prior to the cruise. During the cruise we were uninterrupted by kids and life's challenges and were able to enjoy each others company once again. We grew close again and now find ourselves missing each others company once again. She is away on another business trip and I miss her terribly. Read Less
Sail Date February 2011
Cruised on the Norwegian Sun Eastern Caribbean Feb 26- Mar 5 2011. This was only our second cruise, first being NCL Spirit in 2009. We drove from Chicago to Port Canaveral. Boarding was very quick and easy. We took advantage of Casino at ... Read More
Cruised on the Norwegian Sun Eastern Caribbean Feb 26- Mar 5 2011. This was only our second cruise, first being NCL Spirit in 2009. We drove from Chicago to Port Canaveral. Boarding was very quick and easy. We took advantage of Casino at Sea boarding line, it was empty. Balcony cabin had plenty of room. Coffee maker in room. Minibar had room to store a couple of cans of Coke (we bring our own) , but it was not cold enough to do the job. Air conditioning in room was also borderline, had to keep drapes closed during the day when we weren't in room to keep sun from heating it up. Shower was very strong. Cabin attendant was excellent, as were all the crew we dealt with. As previously noted in the other reviews of the Sun, the one glaring fault is the small size of the buffet on the Sun. The Spirit is about the same size as the Sun, but its buffet is twice the size. We avoided it and ate in the main dining rooms and snacked at the aft outdoor cafe. Service in the main dining rooms was first class. Wait staff is very attentive and professional. The shows were good, specially the female singer-dancers. Many party functions were held in the Dazzles Disco, which I thought was way too small and jammed with furniture. The observation lounge was much bigger, but seemed to be under-utilized. The Spirit held its larger events in the observation lounge, the Sun should follow suite. Read Less
Sail Date February 2011
This is our third cruise on Royal Caribbean. Our embarkment was very very smooth. The lines moved quickly and we were on the ship before we knew it. We found our room and put our carry on items away. There was a lot of storage, a safe ... Read More
This is our third cruise on Royal Caribbean. Our embarkment was very very smooth. The lines moved quickly and we were on the ship before we knew it. We found our room and put our carry on items away. There was a lot of storage, a safe and a refrigerator. Our room was a balcony on the 8th floor and it was the first time we had a balcony room. The balcony was nice with 2 chairs and a small table. We really enjoyed it. The luggage was there before we knew it. Much faster than other cruises we have taken. So we set out to explore the ship. This was the biggest ship we have been on and thought it was beautiful and so very clean. Everyone was very friendly and helpful. We went thru the munster drill very quickly and got ready for dinner. We were the main seating. Our waitress Karen and co-waiter Carlos were wonderful. I can not say the same for the people that sat at our table. 3 couples sat at one end of the table (and they were not together) and ignored everyone else at the table. The first night one other couple left so we were the only ones left with them at the table. We have gone on 2 other cruises and have NEVER had this happen. It made our dining experience not very nice. They all got wine each night and shared it and never once even asked where we were from. The couple that left the first night never came back all week. We went to dinner Monday night formal night but didn't go back till Thursday. The waitress was upset and thought we did not like her. I was honest and told her the way we were treated made it a not very pleasant experience. She was upset with them also and from then on waited on us first and brought our food first. Even people at the table next to us noticed and talked to us about it. We made great friends with other tables and so that made up for it. Entertainment: Opening night was very funny as was Monday night with Judy Kolba. Very fun. Front Row Production was fun. We were not able to get Ice Show tickets even though we stood in line for over an hour but we went and stood in line for seats that were empty and were able to get right in. I must say when I saw the size of the ice that I thought it would be a so so show. But boy was I wrong. The Ice Show was out of this world and I am so glad we were able to get in. We didn't go to any other shows but really enjoyed the ones we saw. Food: The food was just not as good as on other cruises. There was always something available and it was very clean and presented well but a lot of it had no taste. The steaks were good as was the shrimp and lobster. We dined one evening at Portofinos and it was so worth the $20 fee. We were on a waiting list for Chops but did not get the call. Make sure you reserve right away because they only take 80 reservations per night. We also went to Johnny Rockets and loved loved loved the cheese burgers. They bring you fries and onion rings as long as you are there. They dance every 30 minutes and we had a great time there. Service Everyone on that ship went overboard to help everyone and make your cruise wonderful. They have a great staff. We especially like Marvin in the Schooner Bar and visited him every day. Activities: We didn't play Bingo this trip but we did play Name that TV show tune and we won the Name that Country Song contest. We also went to the Casino and I won $65 on night and my husband won $80 one night. No big wins but at least we didn't loose everything. We did see big winners every day we were just not one of them! L Coco Cay I think Coco Cay is as close to paradise as you can get. I had been there before but it still was just so beautiful. I don't think I would ever get tired of going there. The tenders were quick. We lay in hammocks and looked thru the Straw Market, ate the BBQ lunch and then just lay on the beach all day. It was a very very beautiful day. We did not do any excursion but the next time we will do the jet ski. We found out the take you to all the islands close by. It is just a wonderful place. Kids: We did not see hardly any kids on the ship. I talked to someone that worked with the kids and he said there were only 190 kids that week and most weeks they have 1,000!! The areas for the kids looked great. On Tuesday the ship was very rolly. My husband never gets sea sick and he got very sick. He took Bonine and was better. They said the ship was rolling because we had to go very fast to get from Coco Cay to St. Thomas in one day. St Thomas  I swear when we were going in to St Thomas I thought I was dreaming. It is really beautiful. That day we had to go thru Customs before we could get off the ship and it was a mess. We had an early excursion so we were the first to go thru but the lines were the whole length of the ship. We went on a tour with Godfrey. He was waiting on us right outside the gate at the ship. There were 2 vehicles of people that went on the tour that day with us. There were 3 ships in the port that day. Godfrey took us in town shopping for 3 hours and then on a tour for 2 hours and to a beach for 2 hours. We really enjoyed the shops downtown. We ate lunch and ran out of time before we knew it. Then to the tour. They drive on the wrong side of the street and it is quite mountainous. What a totally beautiful island. We really enjoyed the whole day at St. Thomas. If we ever go back I think we will take a ferry to St. John. St Maarten When were going in to St Maarten dolphins greeted the ship and swam along side of us. It was so neat. There were babies too. We really were excited to see them and that was a highlight of the day also. We went on a tour with Joyce Prince. We hired her to take us on a tour and she also had another family from our ship. We had a good time and made friends with them and with her. She took us on the Dutch side and French side and showed us everything and would stop anywhere we wanted. She took us shopping at the air market also and that was fun. She took us on the tour of the whole island. When that was over she would take us to a beach or back to the ship. The other couple went shopping and we went back to Orient Beach. OH MY!!! The most gorgeous beach I have ever seen. She took us to Pedro's and dropped us off. We walked up the beach and at lunch at a little place and then rented 2 chairs and a umbrella for $6 each and that included a drink. It was so relaxing. It was hot but with the breeze you didn't notice it. We are not beach people but we would still be there right now if it was possible. I recommend everyone going there. There were not many people there that day as September is their off season. The hurricane that was in Bermuda had pulled all the dirty air from the Caribbean and the Captain of the ship said he had never in 31 years seen such clear beautiful days as what we had in St. Thomas and St. Maarten. Guess we were lucky. We met 2 girls and a guy from the ship that worked with the kids. They were off that day and had rented a jeep. They offered to take us back to the ship with them at 5, but we had reservations that night at Portofinos at 6 so we went back at 4. They were very interesting and nice. We walked back to Pedro's and got a taxi back to the ship for $15. It was such a wonderful wonderful day. Then we had 2 sea days just to relax and get some sun. Our cruise was my dream vacation and it was soo wonderful. We will only go on Royal Caribbean and will probably go 2 times next year. Something was wrong when we went to get off the boat. We were supposed to be about the middle of the people getting off and we didn't get off till after 10:30. There were people there waiting to get on already. It was very very slow. Someone said that Immigration did not get there in time but I don't know what the hold up was. Hope I didn't go on to much but what a wonderful time we had. I wish everyone could have the same!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2006
We set sail on the Mariner of the Seas in October of 2006. My family of four, my wife, 5 year old son and a 13 year old niece stayed in two connecting inside cabins. We were on Deck 7 in the rear part of the ship. The ship was in great ... Read More
We set sail on the Mariner of the Seas in October of 2006. My family of four, my wife, 5 year old son and a 13 year old niece stayed in two connecting inside cabins. We were on Deck 7 in the rear part of the ship. The ship was in great shape. It was very cleaning as the cleaning staff did a great job of keeping the public areas clean. It was a large ship (3100 guests) with many activities going on. I'll cover the activities later on. This ship had the best A/C system out of all the ships I have sailed on. It was always kept cool, both in the public areas as well as in the cabins. There were many lounges and bars where you could sit and enjoy a nice drink. The promenade was great, especially with the 24 hour snack bar and Ben and Jerry's ice cream (extra charge of course). The ship was large, so there was a lot of walking involved. Also the elevators were probably one of the worst I have experienced on any ship. There was always a long wait for one and during the busy times (dinner/shore excursions) good luck on catching one. Even if you do, they were usually full anyway. The up and down buttons also don't always work for some unknown reason. Let me first describe our cabins. We have sailed on 5 different cruise lines, with this being our first on Royal Caribbean. The designs of the cabins were one of the best that I have been in. There were plenty of storage spaces in the cabin. It also had one of the best designed bathrooms out of all the ships. The semi-circular showers were a genius design, which allowed my wife to take a shower with my 5 year old son. Usually on the other ships, this would have been a very difficult task. The shower also had a hand held feature which was great for giving our little guy a cleaning. The water temperature was hot and pressure was excellent with plenty of towels provided for. The connecting rooms were great with two kids traveling with us. We had all the privacy we needed. My bed however was not very comfortable. The mattress seemed thin and worn. My son's bed however seemed a lot more comfortable. I guess it's a hit or miss. The negatives are that the guests in the adjacent cabin next to our kid's cabin were smokers and we could smell heavy cigarette smoke in our kid's room. The smoke was very annoying. I called the maintenance department initially to ask a maintenance person be sent down to investigate and nothing happened. I called 45 minutes later and the person on the phone told me that they were checking their A/C and duct system. He didn't seem to care too much. I surmised that there probably wasn't too much that he would be able to do anyways. I spoke to the room attendant and she verified for me that the couple next door were heavy smokers and she'd have to make a request on the last day to have the carpets steamed cleaned. I investigated it and speculated that the smell probably came from the A/C vents or the Sat TV/ electrical connector holes from the back of the refrigerator, since it shared the same wall. Our room was fine and I didn't smell any cigarette smoke, though my wife complained that the bedspread smelled of cigarette smoke, even though I couldn't smell it. It got bad at times in our kids cabin, where I kept the kids in ours. So if you are allergic to cigarette smoke, you might want to consider this fact. Our in room safe wouldn't open one day and I called maintenance and they were there promptly within 20 minutes. Another comment on the room is that the towels do not smell fresh. Also they leave pool/beach towels in your stateroom for you to take up to the pool or ashore. There was a note stating that if the towels were missing at the end of the cruise that you'd be charged for the towels. On the other cruise lines, most offer towels at the pool. There was a foul odor coming from our bathroom and I couldn't figure out why. I then saw that the bathroom had toilet bowl brushes next to the toilet. I then realized that the toilet bowl brush holder hadn't been clean and the odor was coming from it. I cleaned it and the smell went away. Needless to say it was gross. However the bathroom did smell better after that. J This ship has one of the best buffets out on the seas in my opinion. There were many choices and food was plenty. The quality of the food in the Windjammer Buffet is quite good. The selections were varied, however there was a person that I heard complaining that there was no taco bar. Well I guess you can't make everybody happy. The food in the 3 level dinning room was on par with the other cruise lines. The service on the first night was so so and we changed tables. We had requested a table for four since we had small children and was told by our T/A that our requests had been received and confirmed. To our surprise on the first night we were seated at a big table with several other adults. I went to the head waiter (tall blonde on the 5th floor (Sounds of Music) and there was a line of people requesting change, including a couple that had just gotten married and were on their honeymoon, who had been assigned to different tables across the room. This head waiter seemed stressed and had a difficult time keeping track of each person's specific requests. He even had to call someone to find out how many seats the tables hold. You'd think that he would have a seating chart in front of him and look it up, but he didn't. Finally another gal come over and tried to help him. Poor guy. I have changed tables only once on another cruise line and they were much better organized. The second table we received offered excellent service. Our head waiter Merrick did an excellent job. On RCI they call them head waiters on others they call them maitre'd. Merrick was very friendly and warm. He took the time to go around every table and say Hi to people. He also checked on his employees to make sure they were doing okay. Our waiter, Angel from Bulgaria and asst. waiter Jude from India were very professional and attended to our needs. Angel was very meticulous and attentive. He was also very efficient. He got our food quickly and we were in and out in a timely manner. This helped tremendously eating with a 5 year old. Jude was very nice and kept track of things. He took care of our drinks and refilled them when needed. The service in the buffet was so so. It just didn't seem very friendly. One particular thing I want to mention is that on some cruise lines, they leave a fresh bread basket at your table. On RCI, the asst. waiter comes around with the basket and asks you to choose. I find this inconvenient as some times you have to wait for him to come around or ask for several pieces in advance. We tried the specialty restaurant, Chops and the food was very good. It was comparable to other cruise lines, although I think Holland America has bigger portions including their steaks, but heck you can only eat so much. The entertainment on the ship was a hit and miss. The ice show was great. It was the high light of the cruise. It was one of the best shows I've seen on a cruise ship. The two production shows were probably the worst that I've seen. The first show, Front Row was horrendous. None of the songs and music sounded familiar and the dancing was so so. I expected more. The dancers were not in sync and the singers although each talented, didn't match up very well. The costumes and sets also were probably the worst that I've seen. I've seen at least 15 shows on different cruise lines. The second show, a tribute to the 80's was much better, however was still disappointing. The only other show I saw was a tribute band to the Temptations. They were good if you were in to the Temptations, but my wife and I only knew about 3 of the songs. Some of the other guests though did seem to really enjoy their show. The calypso musicians on the pool deck were excellent and played good music. They had really good vibe. My wife and I hit the casinos and after 5 minutes lost $50. After that we said no more. We heard several other guests also make similar comments. The casino was not happening. My family had a great time doing rock climbing, in-line skating and ice-skating. There were so many things to do. This is a great ship for an active person. The only disappointing thing was that they had free ice-skating lessons, but it was only offered on the last full day of the cruise. This didn't make a lot of sense. The sports staff did all seem to be very nice and easy going. The kid's club was average and the staff seemed pretty nice to the kids. However there were many young teens running around unsupervised on the ship. But heck they also seemed to be enjoying themselves on the cruise and why not. They're on vacation also. Overall, this cruise was a hit and miss. Some parts were great and others I wanted to forget. If you want a lot of activities then this ship is for you. There were so many things to do. But right now, I think we'll try Celebrity or stick with the other cruise lines. Breathing in the smoke in the cabin was a real drag. Read Less
Sail Date October 2006
This was our first cruise and I promised that I would write up a review upon returning. Everything that I have read on this website was very helpful, both the negative and positive. I thought I would return the favor. First the ... Read More
This was our first cruise and I promised that I would write up a review upon returning. Everything that I have read on this website was very helpful, both the negative and positive. I thought I would return the favor. First the positive... We had a blast. These are only the highlights. First I have to say that Carnival had wonderful staff. Our steward, Dimiter was very polite and helpful. Our waiters, Vern and Carlo were great. They all work so hard! The cabin surprised us. It was plenty big enough for the 3 of us (although I would not like to try to fit 2 kids over age six) and the way they arranged it to make enough storage space for all the things we packed showed great engineering and foresight. I was nervous that we wouldn't have enough to do on the boat. I packed 3 books and only read 1 chapter of the first. (Very unlike me as I read pretty much non-stop at home!) We never got bored. There were activities appropriate for all of us and the shore excursions allowed us 4 very different experiences all in one trip. Camp Carnival was such a hit with our daughter that the first question she had each morning was "When can I go to camp?". Just like the ads on tv, she didn't want to hang out with us. The counselors were wonderful with the kids and very professional. I don't know how they do it and stay sane! Having our daughter in the camp allowed us to have some grown-up time. We met great people and enjoyed the nice formal dinners with our new friends or just the 2 of us. We never made it to the Supper Club because the main dining room food was excellent. Maybe next time... And the negative...When asked how my cruise was, I think I would honestly say while we had a great time, I don't think cruises are for everyone. Especially Carnival. I don't think Carnival is for the very serious and easily offended group. I also don't think it would be good for children under age 6 as it would be too overwhelming. There were too many crowds at times, which made even our 8 year old a little nervous. It was made worse by the fact that our cruise was full of spring breakers. I heard of at least 3 people who were escorted off the ship in hand-cuffs. 1 for indecent exposure on St. Patty's day at the Main Lido Pool deck. We had to go out of our way to make sure our daughter was not around the drunk and very inappropriate behavior of the young college-aged men who were on our ship showing off exactly how immature and insensitive they were. There was even a group of Marines not demonstrating a very good example of our US armed forces intelligence level and honor. We wrote to Carnival and suggested that they take a stricter approach in order to make the ship more family friendly. Maybe even make one of the pools a kids oriented (no alcohol) area. I think that even in a non-spring break week, Carnival is for the more party oriented crowd. Most of the activities on board involve alcohol and gambling and loud music (or combinations thereof). For the record, I have to admit here that I am not a saint. I do enjoy a nice glass of wine (or two or three or...) and got pretty tipsy myself one night in the disco and regretted it the next day when the ship was rocking back & forth in the gulf stream... So as I was saying - The other negative stuff I was prepared for...The cow herding and long waits at port docking time. No privacy. High cost of shore excursions and alcohol on board (Our incidentals, souvenir purchases, photographs and booze almost doubled the cost of the cruise over the cabin alone). Too much food (wait, is that good or bad?). Itinerary....This needed its own section.. I would love to plan a trip just to Belize and to the Progresso/Merida area. We went cave tubing in Belize and visited the Dzbilchaltun ruins in Progresso. I wouldn't revisit the overly touristy Key West and Cozumel. They were too crowed and there were too many cruise ships docked at the same time. However, we didn't not enjoy ourselves at those ports. They just weren't my favorite. I need to note that I did overhear on the ship people saying the exact opposite. Some people loved Key West and Cozumel and hated Belize and Progresso. I have to suspect that they didn't do research ahead of time and didn't book the right tours at those more under-developed locations. My recommendation - take the Western Caribbean if you like adventures and read-up on the port of call forum to plan before you go. (Note: We only took 1 Carnival tour. The rest were independently organized.) The bottom line...Will we go again? Definitely! Would I recommend the Glory to fun-party types with kids old enough to enjoy the fun activities at camp? Absolutely! Just go prepared, ignore the few not-so-great stuff and have fun. It is well worth it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2004

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