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Carnival Triumph/Excursions 10/16-10/23/10

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Oct 24th, 2010, 12:19 PM
  #1
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Carnival Triumph/Excursions 10/16-10/23/10

This was a family trip, DH and I (both 39) and our daughters, 9and 7. We had never been on a cruise prior to this trip. It was also the first time we took the girls out of the country. DH and I have been to the Caribbean half a dozen times before but this was our first time in the Bahamas.

As for the ship, it was okay. I have nothing but resorts to compare it to, however, there was nothing really impressive about it. The pools were nothing more than over-sized hot tubs. I think that was the most disappointing part for our family. The girls really liked the water slide and had fun hoping around the "pools", but it wasn't enough to keep busy for a long time. They were not big fans of the "Camp Carnival" kids program, and there were not a lot of family activities. I think Carnival really wants you to put your kids in the kids program and enjoy some more adult activities. I was very surprised when they played a DVD of Woodstock on the big screen in the middle of the afternoon.

Our room was that...just a room but that was fine because we were hardly there. We had an internal room and were glad to have saved the money for excursions. The food ran from highs to lows. I would rate it consistenly 'OKAY". We did have lobster tail one night and lamb another. Both were wonderful. Prime rib twice, which was very good. Filets one night that were horrible. Tough and gross. Our wait staff was really great. We ate in one of the dining rooms most mornings and it was much better than a buffet. Service was a little slow but it was nice to sit and have food brought to the table.
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Oct 24th, 2010, 12:22 PM
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Lunches were all buffet but the food was pretty good. You could also get deli sandwiches, pizza, asian noodles, etc. at other counters around the buffet area. There was a sushi cart every evening on the Promenade.

I think our real problem was that we had 3.5 days at sea. That was a little long for us but live and learn. We will take that into consideration if we choose to cruise again.
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Oct 24th, 2010, 12:26 PM
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As for excusions, we had absolutley amazing experiences. We chose to book through Shore Trips (www.shoretrips.com) on the advice of some friends who are experiences cruisers. We could not have been happier!

We chose the Close Encounters of the Dolphin Kind/Beach Day Combo in Nassau and the Deserted Island Cruise/Snorkel in Freeport. I cannot express how much we enjoyed both of them. We felt like royalty! Our daughters loved the dolphins. This was the second dolphin excursion my husband and I have been on (first on one was in Mexico and not booked throught Shore Trips), and it paled in comparison. Our afternoon at the beach afterwards was one of the most relaxing days we have ever spent. While most of the other folks stayed on the pier side of the cove, our family explored the other side and felt like we were on our own private island. It was breath-taking! We were the last ones to leave.

Our Freeport excusion was equally amazing. Our guides were very friendly and saw to our every need. We loved the "off the boat" snorkeling and found it ample time to explore. Once on the private island, we felt like we were in paradise. The beach was beautiful, the food and hospitality were incrediable and the off the beach snorkeling was very, very cool. We enjoyed sampling fresh conch and found some beautiful shells to take home.

The respect for the sea environment on both encounters was highly rewarding. We have always taught our girls to honor the ocean's gifts and it was so nice to have that reenforced by the staff on both trips. Thanks again for the experiences and memories. We will book with them again for sure!
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Oct 24th, 2010, 12:33 PM
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For our day in Key West, we decided to wing it. We wanted to have breakfast at Camille's but found out that it was quite a ways away from the dock. We decided that we didn't want to waste time so we ate at Two Friend's on the advice of one of the bike cabbies. It was very good. We all shared Crab Cake Benedict, Shrimp and Crab Quiche and Banana/Walnut Waffles with Praline Syrup. All excellent choices. After breakfast, we rode the Conch Train around Old Key West. It was a beautiful day and we loved hearing the stories from our conductor. We hoped off to spend some time at the Southern Most Point and to grab a slice of chocolate covered Key Lime pie...yum!

Lunch was at Alonzo's. Sampled Stone Crab claws, coconut grouper with lime aioli and a seafood pasta. Another wonderful meal. The restaurant is on the harbour, so the views were great too. After lunch, we did some shopping and headed to the aquarium. Very sweet experience for the kids. Touching pool and shark petting were the highlights. All in all a great day.
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Oct 24th, 2010, 12:35 PM
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Not sure if we are cruise people but we learned a lot from the experience that would help if we decided to try again. We would love to return to all three places and explore more. Thanks for reading!
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