Written by Jodeci527 on 24 Feb, 2011
The next day we came off the ship soon after it docked, as we intended to return early. We were now on the island of Barbados. We've both been to the island before, so we weren't planning on doing a tour. There were specific…Read More
The next day we came off the ship soon after it docked, as we intended to return early. We were now on the island of Barbados. We've both been to the island before, so we weren't planning on doing a tour. There were specific buses available at the port which were used to transport cruise passangers into the city for a charge of $2. My boyfriend and I boarded on of the buses and were only seated for two minutes when something rather interesting occurred. Two uniformed officers approached our bus, apparently searching for someone or something. They peered into our bus and asked me to step out! Although I was shocked, I complied and climbed out of the vehicle. It turned out that I resembled a wanted person, and after realizing that I was not the fugitive, they profusely apologized. What a way to start the day!The bus moved off shortly after this inspection, and we arrived in Bridgetown, Barbados within a few minutes. We were only strolling around for mere seconds, before being approached by a young man. He asked if we could assist him in buying a new pair of sneakers by use of our visitor's discount. We politely declined, but learned from this mistake and removed our ship's card from the lanyard around our neck, assuming that this was how we were identified as tourists.Bridgetown was a very modern town, with tall buildings and many familiar stores and restaurants. I bought a pair of earrings and a magnet to add to my collection, while my hunny purchased some keyrings to give to his coworkers. The rest of the morning went by with little drama, and when the sun's heat became too unbearable, we hired a taxi to return us to the port.The ship was not as empty as the day before. Several persons were lounging by the pool, having lunch or reading in several of the public lounges. We went to the bar where we were to meet with our new friends. They were already there, so we joined them and spent the rest of the day sippin on margaritas and having a grand time.Before we knew it, it was nightfall and rushed off to prepare for dinner. This time we arrived at the main dining room with plenty of time to spare. Dinner was particularly scrumptious. I had an appetizer of roasted pumpkin soup, an entree of well done steak and for dessert, a glass of chocolate mousse. Once again, the dinner staff treated us to some dining room entertainment, this time performing the dance of a popular hip hop song "Low" by Flo Rida. After dinner, we went to a comedy show, where the comedian was rather vulgar, but by no means overly offensive. We stayed up as late as we could, before staggering back to our cabin.The next day found us in my most anticipated port, St. Lucia. Today was a very special day, as it made four years since my boyfriend and I started going out. We, along with our new friends booked a boat tour of the island, for a charge of USD $50 each. The boat was very large and clean, and our captain and crew were really friendly. The first stop on the tour was to see the Piton Mountains. They were trult majestic and we were able to take several wonderful shots from our position in the harbour. The boat then continued to take us to a pier where we boarded a tour bus. The bus drove us to the local drive in volcano, which had bubbling sulphuric lakes, but the stench was seriously sickening, forcing us to run back to the vehicle. The next stop was to a small but pretty waterfall, in the midst of a botanical garden. The atmosphere was pleasant, so we lingered for a while, and our tour guide gave me my first taste of cocoa straight from the pod.The bus then drove us back to the pier, and we climbed back unto the boat, which then took us to a local beach to spend the rest of the afternoon. We were supplied with complimentary snorkeling gear and we floated around all day, peering beneath the surface of the water at the hundreds of colourful fish, sea anemones, coral and starfish. It made for a truly magical and romantic afternoon. Pleased with how our day turned out, we started the journey back to our cruise ship, and made sure to tip our sailors well. On our arrival onboard, we went to the spa, where we had previously booked an appointment for a couple's massage. The therapists were skilled and the massage was to die for. We were pampered for 30 minutes, then we went to the steam room where we relaxed for a while. After this, were were starving, so we returned to our room and got ready for dinner.It was another elegant night, so we dressed up, matching in a black and gold colour scheme. We took a few professional photos, then proceeded to the dining room. The day was all we could have possibly hoped for and so much more. Close
Written by Jodeci527 on 22 Feb, 2011
After a peaceful sleep on the extremely soft bed, I awoke to find that we had already docked in our first port, St. Thomas. After a quick shower and a bite to eat we made our way down to the gang plank and stepped…Read More
After a peaceful sleep on the extremely soft bed, I awoke to find that we had already docked in our first port, St. Thomas. After a quick shower and a bite to eat we made our way down to the gang plank and stepped ashore. The port was very busy, regardless of the fact that our vessel the only ship in that day. We slowly meandered through the stores and various tourist traps until we found what we were looking for. The Paradise Point Skyride.I've heard that this was one of the best things to do near the port and I was genuinely interested. We paid $20 for the cable car up to Paradise Point. The cable car was very modern and the glass windows provided a 360 degree panoramic view of the St. Johns harbour. After the skyride arrived at Paradise Point, we climbed a few feet of stairs to the highest point and took a few photographs or the marvellous scenery. We then proceeded back down the stairs to explore the little shops that sold various knick knacks. I bought two t-shirts and a magnet (I collecg magnets) and my boyfriend bought a wooden wind chime for his mother.We then walked into the Paradise Point bar, home of the Baileys Bushwhacker. We had a few rounds, and spoke for a bit. Shortly after, we boarded the skyride for the journey back down the hill. We then decided to take a short walk outside of the port area. We found ourselves in a small plaza which had stores such as Foot Locker and Kmart. We browsed for a bit, before heading back to the ship for lunch.After eating, we acknowleged that it was high time we got acquainted with the Carnival Victory. We walked around for the better half on an hour, flitting through the many bars, lounges and public rooms. The pool deck was rather deserted, seeing that most of the cruisers were still ashore. Taking advantage of this rare moment, we lounged in the beach chairs and soaked up some of the warm sunshine in peace. Of course this didn't last for too long, as families started flocking back to the ship, donating a healthy dose of noise and disruption to our afternoon siesta. We then left the top deck, and moved on to to the gym to spend some time on the treadmills. The gym facilities were very up to date and I was greatly impressed. It was then time to prepare for dinner, so we gathered our clothing and started looking for the laundry room. After finding it, we had to wait a few minutes before an ironing station became available. By the time we got through with the laundry room, we had just enough time to shower, get dressed and find the right path to the dining room.The dress code that night was elegant, so it was quite nice to see everyone decked out in their Sunday best. The photographers onboard had quite a busy night, as everyone wanted to take a picture in their finest. The menu was also significantly better this night, offering lobster dishes and the most decadent chocolte melting cake. I ate my fill before returning to the casino, to once again try my luck. Thankfully, the slot machines loved me that night, and I returned to my room $40 richer.The next day found us docked at the emerald isle of Dominica. We planned to hire a taxi to take us on an island tour, with a stop at the Trafalgar Falls. A bit of hiking through a dense rain forest was necessary to actually get to the falls, and we found ourselves slipping over massive mossy boulders and getting drenched by rain one minute, only to be be assaulted by heat soon after. All our tribulations were soon forgotten however, when at last we made it to our destination. The twin falls were beauties to behold, rushing over cliffs in powerful currents, set in lush green backdrop. It was SPECTACULAR! We gazed in awe for a few moments, just enjoying nature, before starting on the gruelling journey back to the taxi. Our driver then took us the Dominica Botanical Gardens in Roseau. We saw a great number of trees and plants and our driver was very well informed. It was obvious that it filled him with pride to share a bit of his country with his patrons. There were two breeds of endangered parrots who called this park their home, the Jaco and the Sisserou. Both were really pretty with brightly coloured feathers. Our guide then gave us some local fruits such as the kenip to try. Dominica was a beautiful country, with countless rivers and friendly natives. After such a tiring day, we retired to our ship as weary soldiers. We were too tired to make it in time for dinner, so after a long rest we went to the Lido deck for an informal buffet instead. At the buffet, we made two new friends. A newly wed couple around our age who were on their honeymoon. We really hit if off, and our conversation lasted for over two hours. They were really nice and made us laugh, definitely the type of people everyone hopes to meet while on a cruise vacation.After dinner, we said goodbye to our new friends, making plans to meet the next day.Thanks to the snooze earlier, we both had quite a bit of energy, so we danced the night away in Club Arcitc, the disco onboard the Carnival Victory. A great end to a terrific day. Close
Written by Jodeci527 on 08 Feb, 2011
A list of 10 tips to help make your cruise go smoother while sailing with Carnival.1. The casino gives free lanyards. On request, they will punch a hole in your cruise card for you, and the lanyard can be worn with your card so that…Read More
A list of 10 tips to help make your cruise go smoother while sailing with Carnival.1. The casino gives free lanyards. On request, they will punch a hole in your cruise card for you, and the lanyard can be worn with your card so that you won't lose it during the cruise. 2. On embarkation day, plan to eat lunch in the MDR (main dining room) as the buffet lines tend to get ridiculously long. The dining room offers a far better ambience, less crowds and good food.3. If you wake up hungry in the middle of the night, there is pizza on the lido deck available 24 hours. You can order as much as you like. It's all included in your fare. Ice cream is always there as well.4. Alcoholic drinks are not included. So if you like to drink, I suggest you create a budget for this. Beers start at around USD$4, and cocktails start at around $6.5. Most ship excursions/tours are really expensive if booked through the cruise line. I recommend to book tours independently. Simply make sure that you will be able to arrive back to the ship long before it is set to sail.6. The wait staff puts on a show after every dinner in the main dining room. You can tell when the fun is about to start, because the lights start to flash.7. If you are planning on bringing many electronics, like myself, you will need to pack an extension cord, as there are not many outlets in the cabin. 8. If you forgot anything of importance, such as items of clothing, aspirin etc., the stores onboard will have them in stock.9. Photos onboard cost anything from USD$15 for regular shots, and USD$23 for elegant photos.10. The drinks that are in your room are not free. You will be charged for any that you consume. Close
Written by koshkha on 20 Jul, 2010
It was October and we wanted to go diving. We couldn't face the Red Sea again - and despite the bombings in Sharm there weren't any good bargains to be had and I just didn't think that Egypt represented good value. Earlier in the year…Read More
It was October and we wanted to go diving. We couldn't face the Red Sea again - and despite the bombings in Sharm there weren't any good bargains to be had and I just didn't think that Egypt represented good value. Earlier in the year we'd already spent too much money on other holidays so we wanted something that would be new and different without costing a fortune. After reading a lot of diving brochures we chose to go to Tobago for a week and were really pleased that we did.We booked with one of our favourite dive operators, UK-based company Regal Dive. They flew us over with late and unlamented Excel airlines who unsurprisingly went into receivership a couple of weeks ago. I'll admit I was nervous - there were some dreadful reviews of that airline doing the rounds but it really wasn't anything like as bad as it could have been. We split our holiday between the Toucan Inn at Crown Point and the Inn on the Bay at Lambeau and in both places we dived with the World of Watersports dive centre which is based at the Hilton. This company was excellent and rang the reception of the hotels each day to reconfirm our pick up times the next morning and turned up promptly every day. We were really impressed by World of Watersports as a diving company.We were picked up on the first day and taken to the dive centre to get our equipment together. The staff were all friendly and welcoming and the centre was efficiently run. The equipment we hired was of a high standard, and the manager of the dive centre ran a very tight ship. The guys who run the boats and the dive staff were all funny, friendly and helpful, but were also very attentive to health and safety. One of the dive instructors was an ex-Commonwealth Games martial arts medalist. All the great equipment and wonderful staff are worthless if there's nothing in the water. So the important thing was, how would the diving be? It was absolutely exceptional. No dive had more than eight divers in the water at any time and we never saw any other dive groups on the same sights. We shared the water with nobody other than the fish! The standard of the coral was outstanding because the sites have only ever been lightly dived. There are plenty of fish and the sea was calm and turquoise.World of Watersports took us up to the North end of Tobago island on one day to dive near the site where Ian Fleming used to live. That was a bit rougher at sea but gave us a chance to see more of the island. On our free day at the end of the week, they also arranged a tour around the island and a walk to a waterfall to keep us entertained whilst we were barred from diving before our flight home.The dives are all done in the morning and the afternoon is left free to do what you want. I would advise hiring a car so you can get around. We didn't and we struggled a bit to fill our afternoons.A few practical points to think of. Wetsuit requirements are for thin wetsuits or shorties because the water is very warm. We were advised not to wear gloves but I asked for permission to use them on the descents down ropes because my hands are very sensitive to rough ropes and barnacles and there was no problem. I just took them off when I reached the bottom.Tobago is a longhaul destination from Europe and some people won't want to go so far for just a week. However on the positive side the destination offers excellent value for money (I think we paid about £529 plus diving) outstanding reefs, and inexpensive good quality food and drink.It's important to keep in mind that Tobago and Trinidad are a single country but the two islands are very different. If you read or hear bad things about Trinidad, don't assume they apply to Tobago. It's a much quieter, gentler place. I was told that there were no direct flights from the US to Tobago which means there are very few American divers there which helps to keep the prices down - wherever American's like to holiday, it tends to put the prices up. We've dived a lot all over the world and this beats almost every other place we've been. From the UK it's quite a long flight but I do think it's worth going further because there's nothing of this standard that's much closer to home. Close
Written by andy4569 on 11 Apr, 2004
The Royal Promenade (on deck 5) is the center for many activities. It is reminiscent of a quaint European town. This four-deck high mall area hosts the Captain's Champagne Reception as well as carnival-like parades with street jugglers, dancers, jesters, etc. Passengers can…Read More
The Royal Promenade (on deck 5) is the center for many activities. It is reminiscent of a quaint European town. This four-deck high mall area hosts the Captain's Champagne Reception as well as carnival-like parades with street jugglers, dancers, jesters, etc. Passengers can also check out the Duck & Dog Pub, Sports Bar, or help themselves to ice cream, cookies, pizza or sandwiches at the Cafe Promenade where Seattle's best coffee is always available.
In the aft Centrum starboard are the Guest Relations and Explorations desks, while on the port side is the Champagne Bar (with two sculptures by the American artist Helaine Blumenfeld). The Centrum is dominated by a four-deck tall piece of artwork entitled "The Dive" by Lawrence Kirkland. This piece depicted a divers view when looking up from the sea bottom. Another attraction of the Royal Promenade is the 1939 Citroen Roadster – really cool looking car.
Deck 2 has the entertainment complex, conference center, and La Marquis with screening room, plus cabins.
Deck 3 has the Lyric Theatre, which has live performances and Studio B, which is a two-deck high skating rink. Also there is the Jester's Club (a disco for 18 and over) and the Vivaldi Dining Room.
Deck 4 has the second level of the Lyric Theatre and the Schooner Bar with the characteristic odor of old ships ropes. Farther along the aft is the Casino Royale, which Royal Caribbean claims is the largest afloat. Next is the Aquarium Bar with fish swimming in and out of its walls or coral formations.
Deck 5 has the Royale Promenade and forward is the Imperial Lounge with a Chinese motif. There is an outdoor observation deck and the Connoisseur's Club (cigar smoking and lots of leather seating) Also on deck 5 is the Mozart dining room.
Deck 6 mostly cabins and a business services area.
Deck 7 is mostly cabins and the library (well stocked).
Deck 8 is mostly cabins and 19 internet stations. I checked my email for $5.
Deck 9 is mostly cabins and the Concierge Club.
Deck 10 has Suites and Superior Staterooms.
Deck 11 has the fitness center and spa, the Solarium pool (seawater), the Portofino, Windjammer Café, and Island Grill.
Deck 12 has the spa, Club Ocean, video arcade, Johnny Rocket’s, Adventure Beach, and the jogging track.
Deck 13 has rock climbing (got 3/4 of the way up), basketball court, Adventure Dunes Golf, and in-line skating.
Deck 14 has the Viking Crown Lounge, which is divided into Crow's Nest, Blue Note jazz club, and a sports bar.
Deck 15 has the Skylight Chapel, which can hold 60 people and is the highest point in the ship.
Written by cindylou11157 on 17 Sep, 2004
Day 4: Martinique
Martinique was a pleasant surprise. Fort de France was not a beautiful port like St. Martin and St. Thomas and the town is not geared for tourist, but we took our waiter’s suggestion and took the water taxi over to Baqua Beach. The…Read More
Day 4: Martinique
Martinique was a pleasant surprise. Fort de France was not a beautiful port like St. Martin and St. Thomas and the town is not geared for tourist, but we took our waiter’s suggestion and took the water taxi over to Baqua Beach. The taxi runs about $5 per person and is a short ride over. We had a fabulous view of the volcano as we left the port.
As we arrived to our destination, the taxi pulls up to a marina filled with shops and restaurants. It is a very short walk to the beach area. We were able to rent beach chairs for a fair price at the resort and used their facilities. The beach and the water were great, but if you are interested in snorkeling, I would not advise this beach. The people at the resort were friendly and, unlike Fort de France, the people leave you alone. The men had added entertainment at the resort; there were models modeling swimwear on the beach who did not hesitate changing their swimsuit in front of everyone. If you visit Martinique for the day or for an extended stay, I would recommend staying at Baqua Beach.
Day 5: Barbados
Sometimes it is good to save the best for last. Carnival did - Barbados. This is an English island. The people are very, very friendly and the island is extremely clean. We decided to go to the beach, where the snorkeling was good, and to swim with the sea turtles. We spent 8 hours on the beach, and we did not want to leave.
The water was great, the snorkeling was good, and, unlike some Caribbean islands, you are not hassled to buy something and they don't sell you timeshares. We were at a public beach that had access to a picnic area and restrooms and were able to rent beach chairs for a great price.
About mid-day we took a boat ride for only $12 each to swim with the sea turtles. It was amazing how close they came up to us. This was definitely the highlight of our day.
We did not have a chance to see any other part of the island or go into town to shop. I was told Barbados is pricy and to shop at other ports, but everything else about the island was great. I would consider coming back here to stay at one of their resorts.
Written by cindylou11157 on 04 Jan, 1900
Day 1 - St. Thomas
St. Thomas has one of the most beautiful ports of all of the Caribbean. The harbour is filled with sailboats and ships, with the mountains as a backdrop. It is a picture perfect harbour. We decided to shop in…Read More
Day 1 - St. Thomas
St. Thomas has one of the most beautiful ports of all of the Caribbean. The harbour is filled with sailboats and ships, with the mountains as a backdrop. It is a picture perfect harbour.
We decided to shop in the morning and hit the beach in the afternoon. It is a short cab ride to the downtown area. The cab cost about $5. St. Thomas is truly a shoppers’ paradise. The town is very quaint lined with small shops and restaurants. The stores open early when a cruise ship is in port. You will not have any problems finding jewelry, linens, and alcohol. You can bargain with the merchants. They are all trying to get your business. I bought a bracelet but I thought St. Martin had better prices.
There are a variety of restaurants, but we did not need to eat since we have unlimited food on the ship. After shopping, we went back to the ship to catch a quick bite at the buffet and to head to Megans Bay.
This cab ride is about 15 to 20 minutes. You can take the long route up to Mountain Top to see the entire island, but we did not since we did it the last time we were in St. Thomas. You do get a great view of Megans Bay. Megans Bay was voted one of the best beaches by National Geographic, and it is with its white sandy beaches and its crystal clear blue water. At the beach, you can rent beach chairs and rafts. It is a great way to spend the day relaxing in the warm waters of the Caribbean.
Day 2 - St. Martin
St. Martin is unique because one side of the island is Dutch and the other side is French.
You have two different cultures on such a small island. Like St. Thomas, St. Martin also has a very picturesque port, as the habour is filled with boats and ships with the mountains in the background.
We decided to shop in the morning and hit the beach in the afternoon. The shopping was outstanding; this is truly a shopper’s paradise with even more stores to shop in than St. Thomas. I thought you get better deals here. After shopping, we took a 20-minute cab ride on the French side to hit the beach.
The waiter on the ship recommended Orient Beach and he was right. Along the beach are little shacks with small restaurants playing Caribbean music and serving great rum drinks. This beach has a great Caribbean flavor, but do not be surprised if you see nudes - this is the French side of the island and we were close to a clothing optional resort. It is great entertainment. Orient Beach has a variety of water sports you can do. This beach is not as quiet as St. Thomas, but is worth visiting.
Day 3 - Dominica
We took a cruise excursion at this port. The best thing about this trip was the ride up to the falls. We were on a one-lane, semi-paved road and I held my breath every time I saw an oncoming vehicle. My recommendation is to skip this port completely. I would not suggest walking into town. It is a good day to stay on the ship and enjoy having the ship to yourself.
Written by Depster on 21 Apr, 2006
I loved Antigua. It is a beautiful island. Several people told us to go immediately to the beaches, because they were the most beautiful on the trip, but we ignored this advice because we had spent the last few days on the beach. We decided…Read More
I loved Antigua. It is a beautiful island. Several people told us to go immediately to the beaches, because they were the most beautiful on the trip, but we ignored this advice because we had spent the last few days on the beach. We decided to take a public bus up to a small reserve with a rain forest The public bus cost about $1 a piece. Like the other islands, the public bus was a 15-passenger van. You wait in the bus for a while, until enough people come up, and then it goes.All of the people were really helpful and made sure we got on the right bus. The bus driver said that he typically didn't go up that far, but he dropped us off and came back and picked us up at the agreed upon time.We went up to the rain forest to hike. It was really amazing. Where the trees cleared, you could look down the mountain to see the ocean. It wasn't a difficult hike (we did it in flip-flops), but it was worth it. It was a good break from the beaches.While we were waiting for the bus to come, we waited at a cultural center, where a woman made homemade pineapple and guava jelly. She used these tiny pineapples. It was delicious. I also had a glass of homemade juice with a mixture of several fruits. That is highly recommended.After the hike, we were going to do the afternoon on the beach, but we didn't feel like waiting for another bus. We could have taken a taxi, but we are cheap, so we just walked around the town, shopped ,and had pina coladas at a cafe with big open windows. Close
Written by Depster on 11 Apr, 2006
Sigh... What to say about Granada. It was the craziest experience I had on my cruise. To begin with, it was a bit overcast this day and rained really hard the second we got off of the boat. So hard that we had to run…Read More
Sigh... What to say about Granada. It was the craziest experience I had on my cruise. To begin with, it was a bit overcast this day and rained really hard the second we got off of the boat. So hard that we had to run back inside for a bit.We decided to go hike to this waterfall and take a public bus. The bus ride was super scary because the roads were wet, we were driving on the opposite side of the road, and it was straight up this mountain. It was ridiculous. When we got there, there were no other people there, so we started walking and this guy with a machete came out and told us he would take us down to the waterfall. The walk was beautiful through the jungle, but the whole experience was truly bizarre. My theory is that we went to the wrong waterfall, but I can't say for sure. Once we got back to the boat, it was a really funny story to relate.I can't say that I didn't like Grenada, but you may want to use blindfolds if trying the bus and make sure you actually know where you are going :) Close
Written by Depster on 10 Apr, 2006
Barbados was our next stop. Unfortunately the sky was overcast, but it was still really hot. We docked in Bridgetown and walked around the town a bit, but it was not very impressive. There was a pretty cool church and we stopped into a duty…Read More
Barbados was our next stop. Unfortunately the sky was overcast, but it was still really hot. We docked in Bridgetown and walked around the town a bit, but it was not very impressive. There was a pretty cool church and we stopped into a duty free shop to break our $20s into smaller bills. It's really helpful to take a lot of ones and fives because that is what you use most often. If you always have $20s it can be a pain if you want to pick up a postcard or take a short taxi ride.We then grabbed a taxi to the closest beach. It was not that far and we could see our ship from the area. The beach was pretty incredible. There were bits of coral washing up onshore. The one odd thing was that it was right next to some sort of alcohol plant and when you walked up the beach a bit you could smell the alcohol, but it wasn't bad where all of the people were. The pictures would have come out better if the sky was clearer, but it was pretty cool there.Too save some cash we ended up walking back to the boat, it was about a mile or so. We accidentally had a detour into the shipping port, but other than that it was a good idea.Of all the islands, I thought that Barbados would be the one I would go back to for an entire week because there seemed to be a lot of things to do there. Close