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Carnival Cruise Lines: Carnival Freedom

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating

By Bud_CR

  • New

Jul 19, 2015

Carribean

I will start with a glaring issue....room service. This has changed, dont expect this service. I tried calling at different times, and only ONCE got them to answer the phone without holding for 10 minutes---thats right, I said 10 mins, thats when I finally gave up the other 5 or 6 times. The food was very good, the service (except for room service) was great, and the staff very friendly. If you like diversity, you hit the jackpot.....In

my estimation, the breakdown was about 40% white, 40% non black-non white, 20% black........if you like a FAMILY cruise, again Jackpot! Lots of kids, mostly 4-15 years old--kids had to have made up 30-35% of the ship. If you have never been on a cruise, prepare to be a little confused for the first 24-48, your like a mouse in a maze....its not simple to get around....AFT and Forward...you will see what I mean! The drinks are great, but the price is HIGH....ave about 8.50 to 12. Excursions.....3.....over $300 for 2 people. The pools were nice, but small and loaded with kids....there is a small adult pool. Ave adult age on this cruise had to be 50, and sadly most of these have let their self go! very good very small, but I didnt pay for a balcony.....no sitting area. Your either in bed, standing up, or in the cramp bathroom! Just ok They were ok....you can save some money by NOT going through Carnival, but you risk not getting back to the ship on time---not worth the risk for me. Galveston to Western Carribean 7 days

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Feb 15, 2015

Eastern

Fun and sun on the Carnival Freedom!! The food that my wife and I had on the ship, we thought it was very good overall during the cruise. Stayed in cabin 1051 on the panorama deck. The balcony view was great for relaxing and taking pictures as we came into the ports. Plenty of space in the closet and under the bed for 3 full suitcases. The room along with the bathroom was plenty big enough for us. The comedy shows were very funny,

and the deck parties that we attended we joined right in and had a blast!! For people in our age bracket, we would suggest the St, Kitts Scenic Railroad tour, Great time!! Wife and I flew out of Louisville Ky. for this 8 night cruise out of Port Everglades. FREEDOM was a great name for this cruise, because getting away from the snow and cold of Kentucky was how we felt. This was our 7th cruise with Carnival since 1999. We cruised on the Conquest last year and having the Serenity adult only retreat available on this cruise was a added bonus. We took a taxi tour of St. Marten. St. Kitts we did the scenic railroad tour. San Juan we were here last year and we walked downtown to the shops for a while, then stopped in the Sheraton for some casino time. Last but not least Grand Turk was our last stop. We took a very informative taxi tour of this tiny island, then we went to the beach bar and shared a plate full of jerked pork prepared just outside of the bar. GREAT MEAL!! As on past cruises Dw and I met and hung out with several of our fellow cruisers. Bruno and Brenda we really had a great time with you guys. We had so much fun on this cruise , Thanks CARNIVAL for another great vacation.

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Jun 3, 2014

Southern

Second time on Freedom. Again the ports were lousy as before with Costa Rico and Panama. Changes were made to upgrade the ship. Serenity was so loud from the music on lido, we had to leave. Liked staying on the balcony and getting away from crowds. The staff was great, but the food was mostly ordinary. Great staff, nice balcony. Pretty much standard cabin. On and off the ship everybody is trying to sell you something. After

so many cruises, it's same old stuff. La Romana was plain scary. Beaches were best bet for most ports. Too few easy activities. All the ports are same malls/stores, so boring. Guess it's great for jewelry buyers, but so pushy.

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Dec 17, 2013

Caribbean

This cruise was about my 15 cruise I have been on. I have cruised with Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and Carnival. This is the 3rd Carnival Cruise that I have taken. From this experience I will never cruise with Carnival ever again. Upon arriving at the Cruise Terminal we were separated into certain Number groups for check in. The women would checked my information sent me into the wrong line. The line I was sent into was much longer than

other and the person who had to get us our Boarding Passes told us that we were in the wrong line, which was why we had to wait so long for our Cards. Then when we go onto the ship to get to our Room, I was disappointed again. Purchased a Balcony Room. The room was DIRTY. I am talking that it looked like it hadn't been dusted for weeks. I slide my finger across and it was dust. Both in the room and the bathroom is hadn't been dusted. As far as my room stewart... who???? I never saw him. The most he did in the room was change the sheets and even that wasn't done on a daily bases. Then in the always just about every day I vacuum was left next to my door. Also, when they decided to vacuum and shampoo the rugs in the hallway...it was a day while we were out to sea, rather than in port. The bed in the room was HARD as a rock, couldn't sleep the entire trip. I slept for almost an entire 24 hrs once i came home.Then lets move onto the service, worst ever! No one was friendly at all. People were rude. There were more works on the ship talking to each other in there own language that people doing work. From the moment I got on the ship to when I left it wasn't a friendly atmosphere at all. Then lets move on to the food. I have had better food from my Elementary school cafeteria than the food that was provided on this ship. Thank goodness for salad bar because that I pretty much what I ate that whole trip. Only thing I an say was a plus for food was the steakhouse that you had to pay additional for. Dessert... EWWW!! gross worst ever. Room Service food was terrible as well. As for room service breakfast - No Eggs, bacon, sausage or anything really hot for that matter if you wanted to eat something quick in the morning in your room. Spa service - Do Not Go unless you want to walk out in Pain. I had a swedish massage and the women was terrible. This ship was extremely disappointing. I couldn't wait to go back home. They didn't even have a survey for you to take at the end of the cruise, which doesn't surprise me at all. Don't Cruise with Carnival. Worst Terrible What Activities none other and the person who had to get us our Boarding Passes told us that we were in the wrong line, which was why we had to wait so long for our Cards. Then when we go onto the ship to get to our Room, I was disappointed again. Purchased a Balcony Room. The room was DIRTY. I am talking that it looked like it hadn't been dusted for weeks. I slide my finger across and it was dust. Both in the room and the bathroom is hadn't been dusted. As far as my room stewart... who???? I never saw him. The most he did in the room was change the sheets and even that wasn't done on a daily bases. Then in the always just about every day I vacuum was left next to my door. Also, when they decided to vacuum and shampoo the rugs in the hallway...it was a day while we were out to sea, rather than in port. The bed in the room was HARD as a rock, couldn't sleep the entire trip. I slept for almost an entire 24 hrs once i came home.Then lets move onto the service, worst ever! No one was friendly at all. People were rude. There were more works on the ship talking to each other in there own language that people doing work. From the moment I got on the ship to when I left it wasn't a friendly atmosphere at all. Then lets move on to the food. I have had better food from my Elementary school cafeteria than the food that was provided on this ship. Thank goodness for salad bar because that I pretty much what I ate that whole trip. Only thing I an say was a plus for food was the steakhouse that you had to pay additional for. Dessert... EWWW!! gross worst ever. Room Service food was terrible as well. As for room service breakfast - No Eggs, bacon, sausage or anything really hot for that matter if you wanted to eat something quick in the morning in your room. Spa service - Do Not Go unless you want to walk out in Pain. I had a swedish massage and the women was terrible. This ship was extremely disappointing. I couldn't wait to go back home. They didn't even have a survey for you to take at the end of the cruise, which doesn't surprise me at all. Don't Cruise with Carnival.

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Nov 13, 2013

jazz cruise

Ship was very nice. Cabins were big, as well as the balcony. Was nice traveling with the talent who performed on the ship. I would say we had a great time, minus the dining experience and noisy nights sleep. The food was the worst part of the ship. It was tasteless. The deserts looked good, but once you bite into one, you'll want to spit it back out. Everything tasted the same, even their peanut butter had no taste. The omelettes were poured

from a carton, not fresh eggs. The pizza on the Lido deck was the best food on the ship. Very roomy and cozy cabin. Also, very noisy from various parts vibrating due to the ship's engine. Deck above us (cabin 8430) was very noisy with the sound of chairs moving constantly. Fun, lots of variety to choose from with the activities on board the ship. Stay away from cabin 8430, below Lido deck with 24 hour pizza place. Islands were beautiful, Aruba being our favorite.

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Nov 10, 2013

eastern carribean

Since I've always cruised with Carnival, I have nothing to compare it to, but as always I thought it was wonderful! I've always found the ships to allow a choice for anyone. You may chose to be in a large crowd, medium crowd, only a few or quiet time alone. I especially enjoyed the Promenade on the Freedom. Sometimes just gentle quiet music and a great cup of coffee is all you need to set the tone for your day or evening. I found the food

to have a wide assortment of choices from varying countries. I chose not to go to the dinning room, but to eat at my leisure on Lido. Did go to the Steakhouse with my son and the food was absolutely the way I remembered it from eating in the "Supper Club". Sure do wish you had left the name alone. It just seemed more special before. I had a balcony stateroom. I really love the balconies and have had one before, thanks to my son! It was tastefully arranged and very comfortable. I do want to commend my room steward, Argus!! Always a smile and since I was in and out of the room several times a day, I'm sure it was a little difficult for him. He definitely did a wonderful job!!! The VIP cocktail hour was nice. I must say over the years I've cruised with Carnival, the latest cruises do not offer nearly as many lounges with varying styles of music. I miss that!! Of course, I loved the shows in the theater!! Many cruisers I spoke with said they rarely get a chance to see live theater, so that was always a high point of their cruise. This was a bittersweet cruise for me because I watched my son, Trent Webb sing his last Production shows. Yes, I'm prejudice, but he is fantastic and has had a wonderful 22 year run singing with Carnival! :) I will end with............my trip was everything I knew it would be!

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Apr 5, 2013

Southern Carribean

We were deeply disappointed with the Carnival Freedom after having traveled on the Carnival Dream twice before. The staff on the Freedom were no where as nice, friendly or interactive as those staff members from the Dream. We had horrible dining room service! Our family of six was placed at table with another family of six and before our orders were even taken, other diners were leaving after finishing their meal! The head waiter introduced

himself on the first night and we never saw him again. This was so NOT what we had been used to on the Dream. The room steward was great! He made sure that our room was in tip top shape and after finding out that we were sick for a few days, even checked on us thereafter. The ship itself was okay but does not compare at all with the Dream. It was not very well laid out since the kids and teen area was between the casino and the piano bar, the main hub for adults during the evenings. The kids constantly ran up and down the halls and in and out of the elevators as if they had no home training whatsoever! Made you wonder just where their parents were or if they were feral children!! Activities were announced but not in the correct places. The gym was nice and had up-to-date, state-of-the-art equipment with a variety of services, including the spa. Food in buffet lines was the same every single day, with the exception of one or two dishes. Lemonade was too tart and, I believe, caused us to be sick. Tea tasted like instant instead of brewed. Loved the pool and whirlpools on back of the ship in the adult area but didn't understand the concept of having the pizza area there to attract the kids. ??? Loved the Serenity deck at the front of the ship but, of course, the slide and a kids pool were right beneath it. ?? I would probably not go back on this ship again. The flavor of the food in the restaurant was very good but the service was horrible. There were plenty of choices and I loved the decor. Stateroom was fine but the bed was twins put together and kept coming apart. There were a variety of activities onboard but they were announced and then not in the correct locations (i.e., cornhole was on deck 10 outside the spa but was announced to be on 10 behind the DJ booth which was in the middle of the ship). Not very excited about Freeport or Dominican Republic ports. Freeport was a 15 minute ride to town and Dominican Republic was a 5-minute ride. Not much at either port. My husband had a virus for the first four days of the 8-day cruise. I had it for two days and two of my children had it for two days as well. Fortunately, my other two kids avoided it until we returned home. The trip overall was good and we highly recommend Aruba! The city was beautiful and colorful and was full of life and right there at the port as well!

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Nov 13, 2012

Eastern Caribbean

As stated this was our 13th cruise, the fourth with Carnival, and second on Carnival Freedom. Many things have changed on the Freedom since our last voyage of around 18 months ago, and not for the good. All changes we noticed relate to Carnival cutting costs of operation. The major change we noticed was at dining in the area of service. The number of servers has been reduced by going to a TEAM approach, there are not three team

members, instead of two, however they have seven tables now to service, instead of the old team approach of a waiter and his assistant taking care of four tables. The servers are busy as hell, they are not goofing off, and are unable to service everyone at their tables when all tables are occupied. This is not the servers fault, Carnival has done this combination to reduce total number of servers. This shortage of servers can also be denoted at dining room service at breakfast at lunch. The number of courses has also been reduced to three courses, from four previously. The special coffees now must be purchased, instead of included if you wish. The food remains as exceptional. Shore excursions are not to be done thru the ship, you can get cheaper rates and better sight seeing opportunity by using a taxi. Room stewards maintain high standards in state rooms. Shows are great if comedy, however we do not like the dancing and singing shows. Food is overall exceptional. Deserts could be improved because I noticed cookies and all pre-made, as are most of the cakes and pastery, they are simply warming them up, which in many cases leads to dry desserts. Clean and well maintained cabins. I cruise for relaxation, thus I look to find quiet areas, which can be difficult. Do not take any shore excursions via the ship. The prices are very high and the quality very low. I took two excursions via the ship, and one on our own by hiring a local taxi driver. In Antigua we took tour with taxi driver for $20 per person, around 2 1/2 hours, seeing the highlights of the island, stopping for pictures and a bathroom break. I was relaxing, informative and nice in a air-conditioned taxi. However the two excursions booked via Carnival were $50 and $60 per person. In Tortola we were 45 minutes late starting after leaving 10 minutes early, there was NO working speaker on 25 person bus. Bus open sided, could not see up because upper sides are blocked with canvas siding rolled up, stopped at electronics store to try to fix speaker, then went to drivers home to get different taxi, which was filthy. Driver drove like a maniac. This tour was dirty, hot, disgusting environment. The second tour via Carnival in Nassau was highly disorganized and not informative. I take cruises for relaxation. Overall an acceptable cruise, you always expect some problems. Dining room service will bust there ass to service you, unfortunately they are undermanned. I cannot say I will not cruise Carnival again, but I will look toward Holland America and Princess for my next cruise choice.

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Nov 13, 2012

Eastern Caribbean

As stated this was our 13th cruise, the fourth with Carnival, and second on Carnival Freedom. Many things have changed on the Freedom since our last voyage of around 18 months ago, and not for the good. All changes we noticed relate to Carnival cutting costs of operation. The major change we noticed was at dining in the area of service. The number of servers has been reduced by going to a TEAM approach, there are not three team

members, instead of two, however they have seven tables now to service, instead of the old team approach of a waiter and his assistant taking care of four tables. The servers are busy as hell, they are not goofing off, and are unable to service everyone at their tables when all tables are occupied. This is not the servers fault, Carnival has done this combination to reduce total number of servers. This shortage of servers can also be denoted at dining room service at breakfast at lunch. The number of courses has also been reduced to three courses, from four previously. The special coffees now must be purchased, instead of included if you wish. The food remains as exceptional. Shore excursions are not to be done thru the ship, you can get cheaper rates and better sight seeing opportunity by using a taxi. Room stewards maintain high standards in state rooms. Shows are great if comedy, however we do not like the dancing and singing shows. Food is overall exceptional. Deserts could be improved because I noticed cookies and all pre-made, as are most of the cakes and pastery, they are simply warming them up, which in many cases leads to dry desserts. Clean and well maintained cabins. I cruise for relaxation, thus I look to find quiet areas, which can be difficult. Do not take any shore excursions via the ship. The prices are very high and the quality very low. I took two excursions via the ship, and one on our own by hiring a local taxi driver. In Antigua we took tour with taxi driver for $20 per person, around 2 1/2 hours, seeing the highlights of the island, stopping for pictures and a bathroom break. I was relaxing, informative and nice in a air-conditioned taxi. However the two excursions booked via Carnival were $50 and $60 per person. In Tortola we were 45 minutes late starting after leaving 10 minutes early, there was NO working speaker on 25 person bus. Bus open sided, could not see up because upper sides are blocked with canvas siding rolled up, stopped at electronics store to try to fix speaker, then went to drivers home to get different taxi, which was filthy. Driver drove like a maniac. This tour was dirty, hot, disgusting environment. The second tour via Carnival in Nassau was highly disorganized and not informative. I take cruises for relaxation. Overall an acceptable cruise, you always expect some problems. Dining room service will bust there ass to service you, unfortunately they are undermanned. I cannot say I will not cruise Carnival again, but I will look toward Holland America and Princess for my next cruise choice.

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Nov 13, 2012

Eastern Caribbean

As stated this was our 13th cruise, the fourth with Carnival, and second on Carnival Freedom. Many things have changed on the Freedom since our last voyage of around 18 months ago, and not for the good. All changes we noticed relate to Carnival cutting costs of operation. The major change we noticed was at dining in the area of service. The number of servers has been reduced by going to a TEAM approach, there are not three team

members, instead of two, however they have seven tables now to service, instead of the old team approach of a waiter and his assistant taking care of four tables. The servers are busy as hell, they are not goofing off, and are unable to service everyone at their tables when all tables are occupied. This is not the servers fault, Carnival has done this combination to reduce total number of servers. This shortage of servers can also be denoted at dining room service at breakfast at lunch. The number of courses has also been reduced to three courses, from four previously. The special coffees now must be purchased, instead of included if you wish. The food remains as exceptional. Shore excursions are not to be done thru the ship, you can get cheaper rates and better sight seeing opportunity by using a taxi. Room stewards maintain high standards in state rooms. Shows are great if comedy, however we do not like the dancing and singing shows. Food is overall exceptional. Deserts could be improved because I noticed cookies and all pre-made, as are most of the cakes and pastery, they are simply warming them up, which in many cases leads to dry desserts. Clean and well maintained cabins. I cruise for relaxation, thus I look to find quiet areas, which can be difficult. Do not take any shore excursions via the ship. The prices are very high and the quality very low. I took two excursions via the ship, and one on our own by hiring a local taxi driver. In Antigua we took tour with taxi driver for $20 per person, around 2 1/2 hours, seeing the highlights of the island, stopping for pictures and a bathroom break. I was relaxing, informative and nice in a air-conditioned taxi. However the two excursions booked via Carnival were $50 and $60 per person. In Tortola we were 45 minutes late starting after leaving 10 minutes early, there was NO working speaker on 25 person bus. Bus open sided, could not see up because upper sides are blocked with canvas siding rolled up, stopped at electronics store to try to fix speaker, then went to drivers home to get different taxi, which was filthy. Driver drove like a maniac. This tour was dirty, hot, disgusting environment. The second tour via Carnival in Nassau was highly disorganized and not informative. I take cruises for relaxation. Overall an acceptable cruise, you always expect some problems. Dining room service will bust there ass to service you, unfortunately they are undermanned. I cannot say I will not cruise Carnival again, but I will look toward Holland America and Princess for my next cruise choice.

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Nov 13, 2012

Eastern Caribbean

As stated this was our 13th cruise, the fourth with Carnival, and second on Carnival Freedom. Many things have changed on the Freedom since our last voyage of around 18 months ago, and not for the good. All changes we noticed relate to Carnival cutting costs of operation. The major change we noticed was at dining in the area of service. The number of servers has been reduced by going to a TEAM approach, there are not three team

members, instead of two, however they have seven tables now to service, instead of the old team approach of a waiter and his assistant taking care of four tables. The servers are busy as hell, they are not goofing off, and are unable to service everyone at their tables when all tables are occupied. This is not the servers fault, Carnival has done this combination to reduce total number of servers. This shortage of servers can also be denoted at dining room service at breakfast at lunch. The number of courses has also been reduced to three courses, from four previously. The special coffees now must be purchased, instead of included if you wish. The food remains as exceptional. Shore excursions are not to be done thru the ship, you can get cheaper rates and better sight seeing opportunity by using a taxi. Room stewards maintain high standards in state rooms. Shows are great if comedy, however we do not like the dancing and singing shows. Food is overall exceptional. Deserts could be improved because I noticed cookies and all pre-made, as are most of the cakes and pastery, they are simply warming them up, which in many cases leads to dry desserts. Clean and well maintained cabins. I cruise for relaxation, thus I look to find quiet areas, which can be difficult. Do not take any shore excursions via the ship. The prices are very high and the quality very low. I took two excursions via the ship, and one on our own by hiring a local taxi driver. In Antigua we took tour with taxi driver for $20 per person, around 2 1/2 hours, seeing the highlights of the island, stopping for pictures and a bathroom break. I was relaxing, informative and nice in a air-conditioned taxi. However the two excursions booked via Carnival were $50 and $60 per person. In Tortola we were 45 minutes late starting after leaving 10 minutes early, there was NO working speaker on 25 person bus. Bus open sided, could not see up because upper sides are blocked with canvas siding rolled up, stopped at electronics store to try to fix speaker, then went to drivers home to get different taxi, which was filthy. Driver drove like a maniac. This tour was dirty, hot, disgusting environment. The second tour via Carnival in Nassau was highly disorganized and not informative. I take cruises for relaxation. Overall an acceptable cruise, you always expect some problems. Dining room service will bust there ass to service you, unfortunately they are undermanned. I cannot say I will not cruise Carnival again, but I will look toward Holland America and Princess for my next cruise choice.

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Sep 13, 2012

Southern Caribbean

This was by far the worst cruise that my family and I have ever been on! From the rudeness of the purser's desk personal, to unorganized structure of the excursion desk when it came to problems, the cold powered eggs served at the buffet, and the lack of welcome by the general staff on board. It seemed almost like we intruding on the staff of the Freedom by just being there and cruising with them? It was the same basic menu for breakfast and

lunch every day in the buffet The powered eggs were not even lukewarm, and the bacon was a mass of greasy meat. This was indeed a "lets feed the masses, not let's try to please those who paid for "as in the picture" type of meal. This was definitely a quantity made for the masses, not quality as paid for by the customer. Lunch was the same old thing and I would consider very average. Dinner in the formal dining room was much better than the other meals, but the menu was humdrum. The food tasted somewhat bland and the food seemed to be loaded with salt. It's sad to see how far Carnival has come downward with their food :( Our stateroom was somewhat nice and I would have rated it a 4 star except that there was enough dust under the TV for my wife to write her name under the TV. The bathroom smelled like urine for the first couple of days and Dissipated as the week went by. It appeared that the more that the water from the shower that hit the bathroom floor, the less the smell of the urine. This cabin was nice except it needed a good cleaning. The onboard activities were the normal trivial games, casino, and activities that made carnival more money. The shows were somewhat short of other cruises, although I would give credit to the performers. Don't miss the Jeep tours on the North Side of the island of Aruba. They were wonderful and full of information and just plain fun! Another fun tour was found on Grand Turk. We went Snorkeling on the cay and were able to up close some of the sting Rays that swim in the area. I would recommend the Curacao aquarium and country tour, but make sure that the guide don't leave your party behind in the rush to get to the busses. We just had a bad experience with that tour. I'm sorry to say that this experience with the Carnival Freedom was by far the worst cruise that we have ever been on!!! This cruise on the Carnival Freedom showed just how worn-out the crew and ship were when it came to the everyday routine of having a new set of cruisers aboard. This may have been the Carnival staff's 23rd or so cruise for the year, but to many people, this representatives their once in a year vacation. This is the first cruise of the year for the majority of the people on board, and the staff treated some people like they were numbers-NOT as the Customers that they were!!! Rudeness prevailed on board from the ship staff, and the cleanliness onboard the ship was less than desirable. For some reason the cruise seemed a lot more crowded than any other cruise that we have ever been on. The public places on board were jammed packed, and it was hard to find space around the ship , except for late at night when everyone was sleeping. Because of this cruise, I don't know if my family will be cruising with Carnival Lines in the future.

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Apr 17, 2012

caribeann

We went to the Southern Caribbean,left April 7,2012 I have cruised many times and this was one of our favorites. The ports were great we went to aruba and the dominican republic aruba and cureso they were all great. The food on the ship was the best we have ever had. The pastry chef is the best. We had booked a night in the steak house and cancelled because are food,waiters and matro de was the best his name was chuby and he was so nice and

made sure we were always pleased with the food he never missed a table. Everyone on the ship was so nice. We were on the lido deck and it was a little too noisy kids would play on the elevators and people were always going back and forth to the dining area and the 24 hr ice cream but in all it was great are stewart was jojo and he was wonderful. The staff keep you busy at all times with the casino and bingo and the shows were the best just like vegas. When we go to the islands we will get are own van with a driver so we can go off the beaten path and eat where the locals eat.also go to the best beaches where there are fewer people. From the time we got on the ship to when we got off it was the best.we will go on this ship again.

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Jan 14, 2012

eastern carib

After 50 plus cruises mostly on Carnival I found this ship to be one of the most disappointing due to the overall feeling from the crew and the lack of clean of the ship! This was so unusual that I actually asked many crew what was up? I was told in a most friendly manner that it stems from the top down. Glen Albreicht a senior officer on the hotel side was an ineffective nasty person and the crew after a major holiday cruise was fed up. I searched

out this Glen Albrecht and found him to be a curt, nasty, full of himself individual that I can not understand how he maintains his position. I wanted to discuss some of the problems we faced on this cruise and he dissmissed them telling me that maybe carnival isnt the cruise line for me or my family. What Gaul!!!!!!! He needs to go back and learn what hospitality means!!!!! Often cold and messy. Dirty when complained to Glenn Albrecht he told me how little time they have between cruises! " You know this is not the ritz" was his explaination! Great cruise director!!! We had to share them with the Glory so they were sold out........Once again spoke to Glen A told me that there was nothing he could do...........I already knew it aint the ritz!!!!!!!!!! Trip was great in spite of Glen Albrecht. He needs to swab the deck, clean the latrine , peel potatoes, and learn how to deal with passengers!!!!!! Maybe Carnival aint the ritz..... but it is ritzy enough for me!

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Jan 3, 2012

eastern carribean

We felt this cruise was definitely not worth the money paid. We paid premium prices for a Christmas cruise & Christmas was pretty much ignored. The ship felt very crowded, the pool areas were very small & the decor was depressing, especially the colors. The food was barely average & usually cold, even at night in the dining room. The waiters were very nice & very accomodating, but disorganized & we sometimes waited almost 20 minutes for a cup of coffee.

Overall dissappointing Barely average, alot of it seemed canned, pre-prepared & it was often cold. Especially in the buffet. It was nice, a bit cramped for 4 people, but we did have an outside balcony. bathroom was small, but ok. Fantastic for the kids, we had 2 teenagers on board ages 14 & 16, & they had a blast. Adult activities were ok, but I was out walking about 6:30 AM on morning & saw 2 people fighting over a lounge chair, it was way too crowded. Excursions are overpriced, we just took a couple of tours on our own onshore & did fine. We did a 2 1/2 hour tour for $20 per person, went to the beach, had a great time. I would not reccomend this itinerary, we went from Fort Lauderdale, then 2 days at sea (too many on such a crowded ship) to, St Thomas, then Antigua (YUCK!!!), then Tortola, then Nassau Bahamas. We much preferred the Western Carribean, Curacao, Aruba, St. Martin, much cleaner, much nicer ports.

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Dec 4, 2011

Key West caymans jamacia

The overall experience was not as we had expected. This was the third carnival cruise. The food was less than par and seemed to be often if not always warmed over in the dining rooms. The room was kept well and were impressed with Dennis our steward on both cleanliness and friendlyness. When boarding the ship we were detained in line an extra hour or more because of defective boarding cards our children received ( also at least 50 people in

line when we boarded with similar problems). The entertainment was good and the Steak House was excellent with both service and quality of food. The food was sub par in both quality, menu, and attention to service standards. The menu was very similar to previous trips on Carnival. The food tasted warmed over in the dining rooms . On both the breakfast and dinner dining we had breakfasts on two occassions takiing over an hour to complete dining as well as our servers serving stale croissants every day and burned toast scraped being served during breakfast . The servers were polite and courteous. The stateroom was clean and our steward Dennis was excellent . He was both friendly ,helpful, alert to any request we made. Onboard activities were good, John was a great comedian, kept everyone laughing during his entire performance. Don,t miss the Stingray excursion in the Caymans , and the Zip line in Jamacia. The overall value of our trip is not as expected and we will use careful consideration making our next cruise booking

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Nov 22, 2010

western

Carnival Freedom is probably the weirdest looking ship on the water. But after a couple days, the odd decor is forgotten. The ship is quite clean, and absent the occasional sewage smells found on many ships. We had never cruised Carnival before, so we were holding our breath based on other reviews and comments from friends. We were pleasantly surprised to have a very good cruise. Granted, some amenities could be better, but the overall experience

for the price was great, and the ship is kept clean. Also, we had very pleasant service from the stewards to the dining room staff. We found the dining room staff to be quite excellent, friendly, playful, and professional. The maitre d' of the room, Branimir, made sure to always come see us every single meal, not just the last night to collect a tip. He is an asset to Carnival, for sure, over the usual Napoleanic types who stand at the front podium and look important, but do nothing until gratuity night. The entertainment was ok, not great, and we were not crazy about one show a night on some nights, with a 1030 start time. The two exceptions were the Beatles show and the New Orleans show, which were both quite good. Carnival has a great love for karaoke, so either enjoy it or don't go. Food was typical cruise food, not bad, not extraordinary either. The Lido buffet is nothing to cheer about, and as posted by many ohters, the multi-station layout is a real mess, and you end up in multiple long lines with cold food. They can't change it now i guess, but it is a mess. That being said, I never left hungry. Breakfast in the dining room is decent, although exactly the same each day, no variation. Again, I did not leave hungry. Dinner in Chic is quite good, and the service is good too, although one night our service was crappy. We had anytime dning, so the next night we went to the other side of the room and had great service from John, from Columbia, and his helpers, who were great. We got some magic tricks too. Waht we found is that if you are a quiet type and do not engage them, they leave you alone. We like to have fun, and they seem to thrive on that, since we break up their monotony of week after week. I think they appreciated us being a little nutty, and they reciprocated in kind. Our room was deck 6 forward portside, and was very nice. Typical in size, witha not so typical bathroom. The shower actually seemed bigger than Princess or Royal showers, and we had no problems with it other than never enough hot water, which is on every ship usually. Our steward did the usual Origami, and lept the room spotless. The balcony door whistled in the wind when closed, and could use a better seal. Activities were decent too, although we either got off ship or hun at the pool. We are not the contest types, but enjoyed watching. Typical hairy chest, best mixologist, stuff. Good fun, not over the top. The casino needs to be smoke free. It stinks up the whole deck 5 area around it. One day the law will finally stop exempting casinos from allowing smoking. Not today. Cool Runnings trimaran tour to Dunn's River Falls is well run, and the girls onboard are a lotta fun. Be ready to dance and have a good time. I recommend it. Key West requires no excursions...just get off and walk... great times!! Grand Cayman apparently no longer rents scooters, and as a result, the entire east end of the island is not accessable anymore. That end is the beautiful end, with all the nice homes and private beaches. I suppose you could take a taxi and spend a fortune. Ochos Rios is not worth walking around. Take a tour their and be careful. Carnival Freedom is great if you do not expect too much. If you are prissy, then go for a more expensive ship. For us, it was a good fit, great value, and we would go again.

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Sep 28, 2010

eastern carribean

Don't take this cruise. I am an experienced cruiser and have never been abused by staff until this cruise! Rude and insulting security ruined my trip and made me want off this ship by day 2. When I requested my cruise guarantee, I was told that the guarantee applies only within the first hours of the cruise while at sea-translation: does not exist. In my "VIP" suite, my steward explained that the staff is also abused by those in charge and that pictures

of passengers are actually displayed in staff open areas for staff to mock and humiliate. Food was also terrible. Pasta sauces consisted of canned tomato soup on multiple nights. Waiter was unable or unwilling to provide salt, pepper, grated cheese, or even ordered courses on occasion. I booked excursions on in room TV, but when I attempted to cancel one due to anticipated poor weather several days ahead of the stop, I was told that the sign at the excursion desk precluded refund! I not only will never take another Carnival cruise, I will not go on any line Carnival owns ie Costa, Princess, Ibero, etc.

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Aug 23, 2010

Eastern Caribbean

This was my second time cruising on the Freedom. Would've liked to have done a different ship but the itinerary too good to pass up so we went for it. Didn't mind sailing on it again though, since I like the ship. I wasn't overly thrilled with Carnival on a couple occasions this time around but would sail with them again. The Cruise Director this time was a young British guy named Josh. He was ok but not as good as Wee Jimmy. Wee Jimmy was way

more entertaining! Plenty of comedy shows every night, 3 a night! Loved watching movies under the stars on the Lido deck. The pools were packed as expected but didn't faze me since I like spending my at sea days at the pool hanging out and relaxing. Def love the all adults pool in the back of the ship. Love the slide too! The Serenity deck looked very relaxing but never made it there. There were about 3000 people onboard this time around. The crew was friendly. The ship is maintained nice and clean all the time. Did notice that the excursions seemed pricier than last year. I had a great time, it was fun and overall would cruise again with Carnival. Also - they have a special promo on this ship where you put a $100 down payment on a future cruise (any Carnival cruise) and then receive an onboard room credit - def a great deal. I had purchased on my previous cruise, so we got $100 off this cruise and also received a $100 onboard room credit. I would recomment purchasing this promo (if you plan on cruising with them again), its a great deal. And you have 4-5 years to use it or you can get it refunded. The food was delish. Like all cruises, food is available at any time. I went to the sit down dinners every night vs. a buffet style dinner on the Lido deck. The Mexican buffet day was good. Room service was good too with the exception of breakfast on the last day. Next time I'll have breakfast on the Lido deck on the last day since my bagel was pretty stale. The Deli serves up some good sandwiches too. If you like tuna, try their tuna salad sandwich, its delish. Stateroom was spacious and clean. I love the beds on Carnival, so comfy! Stayed on the 7th deck (inside cabin) this time around vs the 1st deck. Much better on the 7th instead of the 1st. When I stayed on the first deck (aft), whenever the ship arrived into port, you were awakened by the entire room shaking and vibrating. If you don't want to hear any noise the ship makes when its getting into port, I wouldn't recommend staying on the 1st deck. Not the case on the 7th deck. Was able to sleep in nicely. We stayed mid ship - our location was great, close to everything and all the action! Will def keep that in mind about staying mid ship for my next cruise. Plenty of activities. Bingo is pricey. The tournaments at the casino are fun, I got to play in one! Ticket to Ride (tribute to the Beatles) was great! Plenty of comedy shows this time around, 3 a night. Last year there was only one comedy show a night. Live music around the ship every night. We did a beach excursion at every island. I'm there to relax not really too much into sight seeing, just into enjoying the beautiful beaches and water. Noticed that the excursions were pricier than last year. Any excursion that included lunch and/or food was at about $85-$90 per person which was overpriced in my opinion since I only paid $60 for an excursion like that in Jamaica last year. For Tortola we splurged and did the Lambert Bay Beach excursion in Tortola and loved it! It was my favorite beach out of all 5 islands we visited. The lunch was great and beach was paradise!! Magen's Bay in St. Thomas is another beach not to be missed, just very packed, but there were 3 ships in port that day. Lambert Bay Beach (Tortola) was nicer since it wasn't nearly as packed and very serene and relaxing. Keep in mind this is a private beach, so you have to book the excursion to get here, but its worth it! Loved it, had fun!!! Can't wait for my next cruise!!

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Aug 15, 2010

Western Carribean

Will never cruise with Carnival again. We were a group of 10 family members and not a one was impressed with what we got on this cruise. From the moment we walked on board and entered the most gawdy ship I have ever seen to the smoke filled rooms you had to pass through and not to mention the extremely sub-par food, our group sadly was happy when this cruise ended. The food in the Lido dining area was non-impressive. We searched high and low

to find something that really struck us as tasty, but unfortunately, even the grilled hamburgers left much to be desired. Lines were always long and it seemed to take a great deal of time for them to cut the meat, or to serve the taco to you. We felt like our trip always entailed long lines. Once we got our food, it wasn't worth eating. Dinner in the Posh dining room was very eye-appealing, yet it still was sub-par. Overcooked steak, overcooked lobster and the list went on. Almost all the food had a certain "taste" to it. Have no idea what the spice was that they seemed to use in everything, but we all would notice it and comment on it. The ice cream machine was probably the best, but on days when we were at sea, there were lines for that and the machines couldn't keep up with the demands. The stateroom was as expected. Small. We just had an interior one. Compared to the interior room we had with Royal Caribbean, this one definitely paled. Only one outlet and that was in the room, so couldn't do hair in the bathroom. No way to not disturb someone sleeping. Bathroom shower usually ran out onto the floor (there was a shower curtain that really didn't hold the water in). Nothing spectacular to say about room. If you go with this ship, do NOT get a room on level 1. You will hear so much noise from the bottom of the ship. It wouldn't keep us up at night, but it sure would wake you early in the morning when you were pulling into different ports. Most annoying. I will say that the rooms and bathroom, hallways were always clean. Throughout the day we would see the employees cleaning. I cannot complain about any dirtiness on the ship. Bathrooms on the different levels (which were not easy to find) also were kept clean. Depending on your needs and what you like to do, I'm sure you can find an activity to participate in. The "shows" didn't come close to those we saw with Royal Caribbean. I did not like having to walk through smoke filled rooms to conveniently get to other parts of the ship. Our group ended up playing cards and speed scrabble most evenings. We aren't the night life people but if that is your thing, then I'm sure you would enjoy that on this ship. Key West did nothing for us. Grand Cayman - we went to the beach..water is beautiful. We enjoyed that completely. Very hot I must say. We took a tour guide around the city and stopped at "Hell", dolphin area and he explained alot about the area. The $15 per person was worth it to us. Someone said Grand Cayman is a great place to buy jewelry. They did have a lot of stores with "sales" going on. Ocho Rios is so beautiful too. We climbed Dunns River Falls. Challenging in some parts but guides were awesome and very patient with those that were not in the best of climbing shape. They will take pictures for you with your camera (they never got it wet). We then went to Dolphin Cove. Only signed up for the "viewing" of dolphins (no touching) and then swam at that beach. Others in our group did the Boblsed "roller" coaster. They traveled up the hill via trolley and their view was beyond beautiful. When finished they swam in the infinity pool for hours. The pictures from their location let you see the beauty of that country. I would do that excursion next time. Advise: take your own watershoes for Dunn River. Rent the locker with several people (holds plenty of bags) Ocho Rios is an interesting place to visit. Watch out for the Jamaiicans. They are aggressive with trying to sell you stuff. Our group enjoyed the places we stopped at. But as I said, Carnival is not a line that any of us will cruise again with. Even if I didn't have Royal Carribean to compare it to, I would not go with them again. The decor alone is enough to make me not want to sail with them. It was a killer to the eyes and seemed to have no rhyme or reason to the patterns that they were using together. Truly disturbing. Then the boat itself was so chopped up and confusing to get around on. We felt disoriented many times. And like I said, you had to walk through smoke filled areas to get where you needed to be. You could go other ways without the smoke filled areas, but it would take you longer and more up and down confusing ways. Our server was great that took care of us at dinner and he probably was the highlight for all of us. We enjoyed conversations with him. Even though gratuities are charged on your account, take extra cash as you might want to give some of your attendants a little extra cash.

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Aug 11, 2010

western caribbean

Could've been better. Our head waitress and waiter were exceptional. We wanted to change our table and would've if not for their outstanding service. The comedy acts were god awful. During one show numerous people walked out. Of the three, only one made us laugh. Disappointed in some areas; would not give up on Carnival just yet. Enjoyed the food. A highlight. Stateroom was in good order...missed being cleaned one morning Activities were

ok. Excursions. Another highlight. We are always looking fwd to spend our vacation with Carnival. This being our eight cruise and by far our worse. The seating arraignments for dinner were very, very disappointing. We were at a table for two in a corner near the emergency exit and where soiled dishes are piled; my seat was so close to the wall, I bumped my elbow continuously; we were unable to see any of the activities. Being that our cruise was booked way in advance (May ’09), we don’t understand how we were placed there. We received our past guest invitation a day late, and our VIP invitation as well. Doors (cabin and balcony) constantly slamming late at night and early morning (perhaps springs should be installed). Kids running throughout the ship late at night. Lack of supervision.

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By TA_CR

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May 10, 2010

Western Caribbean

Warning!! This review is kind of on the long side. I do want to start off by letting everyone know that this was my very first cruise so I have nothing to compare it to. I read many reviews before going on this cruise, and found them very helpful. As a result, I decided to write one in order to help others who are thinking of taking this cruise. We took the Carnival Freedom Western Caribbean. Ports of call were Key West, FL, Ocho Rios, Jamaica

and Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. We found a Really good deal on some plane tickets so booked the cruise on our own thru Carnival vs. using a TA. Pre-Cruise We are both from Seattle, WA so flew into Fort Lauderdale and stayed at the Courtyard Ft. Lauderdale Airport and Cruise Port. This was a fantastic pre-cruise hotel because shuttle service to/from the airport and to the cruise port are included in the price. It is a really nice hotel that was really clean and spacious. Embarkment Day Once onboard, we immediately went to guest services to put some cash on my sign and sail card. Carnival works on a cashless system where they give you a sign and sail card that is linked to your credit card and it that kind of works as a credit card. Every time you purchase something onboard that is not included in the cost of the cruise, you have to present your sign in sail card. At the end of the trip, you can either resolve your balance by authorizing them to run the credit card that is linked to the card or you can give them cash. I knew the room was going to be pretty small, but it was larger than I expected. Our room was a category 1A with portholes on the main deck. It had a convertible couch and 1 twin bed. What attracted us to this room was the price and the portholes. It was forward on the ship, so I wouldn't recommend it for those that are prone to sea sickness (because you can feel the ship moving at times) or for those that are light sleepers or late risers (because you can hear the anchor going down on port days). We were able to save a couple of hundred dollars by choosing this room. Key West Key West was our first port of call. Key West is a cute little island. We just walked in and out of shops and took pictures. Very fun and we got A LOT of exercise just walking around and enjoying all the sights. Grand Cayman Our second port of call was Grand Cayman. It was really nice to do our own thing there and we were able to see and learn a lot in a small group setting. Since we got back to the port a little early, we purchased a few souvenirs at the shops that were close by and hopped on a tender back to the ship. Ocho Rios, Jamaica This was the one place that we when researching we found the majority of the people saying that is it best to book an official shore excursion. Since we were first time cruisers and a little hesitate to book thru an independent company on our own, we did pay the extra money and booked an excursion thru Carnival. We did the Jeep Safari for about $100 which was a little pricey but worth it. Many people complain about the vendors in Jamaica. Even though it was kind of a weird experience having all those people begging you to buy their stuff, I just told the people "No" firmly and kept walking. I never felt unsafe. Sea Days/Evenings Onboard Sea Days were a lot of fun and relaxing. There was plenty to do, so you can be as active or lazy as you want. Some of the things I went to during the day were a cooking demonstration by the chefs that work in the Steak House, a talk in the fitness are about weight loss and detox, saw an the ice carving, watched the pool Olympics, played mini golf, etc. For night activities, I went to all the shows and musicals in the Victoriana lounge, a talent show, went to three comedy shows (the first comedian Allyn Ball was fantastic but the second one wasn't so great), karaoke, watched movies on the outdoor screen while sitting in the hot tub, etc. I do have to admit the pools were really small and crowded during the day. The Ship I read many reviews were people hated the ship decor, but I actually love it. The ship was also kept clean and I was surprised since so many people were onboard. Everywhere you turned, there were workers picking up garbage, cleaning glass, vacuuming or shampooing carpets, clearing tables, etc. The ship was very large and a little confusing to get around at first, but the more you walk around, the more you get the hang of it. Also as mentioned above, even with over 3,000 passengers, the ship never felt crowded. Staff The staff was really nice and did a fabulous job. Our room steward knew our names by the first day and cleaned our room twice a day. The must have a camera or something to be able to tell when people are coming and going out of their rooms, because he slipped in and out when we weren't around. He was never in our way and we were never in his. He did such a fabulous job by keeping the room clean, that we left him an extra tip in the room on top of the with the prepaid gratuity. The pool staff, buffet staff, dining room staff all did a fabulous job also and were always available if you needed something. Food We opted for Any Time Dining. It worked like a regular restaurant. You just show up to your assigned dining room between 5:45-9:30pm and are seated. We only had a wait one time which was on the 1st elegant night. That wait was more than reasonable and was only for about 15 minutes. We ate breakfast and lunch on the Lido deck everyday, but had dinner in the dining room almost every night except for the second Elegant night. After reading some reviews, I was concerned unnecessarily about water, so we did bring some bottled water onboard. However, the water on the ship was really good and tasted better than what I had at home. Debarkment Day Debarkment day was a breeze. The ship offered self assist debarkment, but we opted to set our luggage out the night before and let the Carnival staff get it off the ship for us. Even though the cruise information stated that we wouldn’t be back to Fort Lauderdale until 7:00am, we got back way before that, so they started letting the self assist people off the ship before 6:30am. We ate breakfast and then went to the lounge we were assigned to wait until our zone was called to get off the ship. When getting off the ship, there is a mass of luggage everywhere. It is harder to find your luggage in this room than it is to find it at the airport. Instead of your luggage being among 100-200 airline passengers, it is among a few thousand cruise line passengers luggage. Fortunately for me, although my luggage was black, I had placed a couple of ribbons and a bright green scarf on my luggage so was able to spot it right away. A few pointers for fellow first time cruisers 1. Bring LOTS of small bills. They will come in handy because you will be handing out A LOT of tips. I found it easier to pay for everything in exact change and almost everything I bought was quoted in exact dollars. 2. It's good to plan ahead, but don't plan too much. Have some flexibility because once you get onboard you will probably find things to do that you never dreamed of doing. 3. I already mentioned the luggage thing. Unless you do self assisted, it is very important to make you luggage stand out or it can be more than a little overwhelming trying to find that luggage at the end of the cruise. 3. Don't over pack! Honestly you only need a few bathing suits and maybe 2 outfits for each day (one for daytime activities and a fresh pair of clothes for evening dinner and activities) and necessary toiletries. 4. Lastly, make the most of your vacation. Remember that at Carnival your tour guides can only do so much, but how much you enjoy your vacation is going to depend on you. I found that on the cruise you can do as little or as much as you want. Don't sweat the small stuff and just sit back, relax and enjoy the cruise. Overall Overall, I had a FABULOUS time definitely sail this ship and Carnival again without hesitation. Concerns I had from reading reviews and horrors stories ahead of time were unfounded for me. My friend and I already said we would do another one when we turned 35, but I will probably do one with another set of friends or family before then. I really can't think of any major complaints and made the most of my vacation. I enjoyed from the moment I step foot in the Fort Lauderdale Airport to the moment I was boarding the plane back home. If you have any specific questions, feel free to email me at [email protected] and I will answer them for you.

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Jan 18, 2010

Carribbean

Husband and I just returned from a cruise on the Freedom. The ship is beautiful, with dining at every level, water slides, adult-only pool areas, mini-golf, shopping and a casino. I am sure there is more, but that's what we saw. The crowd on this one was a nice mix: seniors, families with kids, singles, young adult couples and middle aged couples, and Carnival does a great job of catering to all. We LOVE the Serenity Decks and the adult pools. We

didn't see any shows, but did hear that they were entertaining. Our ship went to Key West (LOVE IT THERE!), Grand Cayman and Ocho Rios, with 2 "fun days at sea." It was a nice mix of ports and sailing. (We're not looking for a million ports, so 3 is great for us.) We think Carnival has good food and a nice selection. We were especially impressed on this ship with the Grand Buffet at lunch. The selections at the carving station each day were outstanding, sometimes outdoing the dinner selections! Yes, I agree with a previous post that they are trying to cut out waste by serving the breakfast ham and bacon. I don't doubt that people load up on it and it ends up in the trash, so I can't blame them. (Our server would give us as much as we asked for, so don't hesitate to ask for more if you like bacon :) The fruits were plentiful and delicious, too-- I had the sweetest cantaloupe-- makes my mouth water just to think about it! I will probably get booed for this one, but I don't think they have the best desserts. There are plenty, but they are missing something-- sweets are not sweet enough, and sometimes a little odd (chocolate fruitcake, anyone???) :( We always go for a balcony room as we enjoy some quiet time there. The room was similar to any of the others we had-- and that's what we like about Carnival. Once you find your way around, you're set on any of their ships. Our room had 3 large closets and some drawer space. I would love for them to put something in the shower that would hold my shampoo bottles and cleansers, but otherwise it was more than adequate. There are nice robes provided and hairdryers are in each cabin. (But they are small, on a short cord and you have to keep the button pressed with your finger to keep them running (kind of like toy fans) and I have thick hair, so it was a hassle. We're not ones for the pool-area contests-- the hairy chest contest is reason enough to go to the Serenity Deck. But they had a cocktail making contest that looked fun, and there seemed to be lots to do if you weren't into lazing about in the sun-- bingo, art auctions, shopping, gambling, basketball, golf, fitness center, spa, discussions; pretty endless list. There seemed to be something for everyone. They even sponsored a "walk for the cure" around the ship one afternoon. We went on the pub crawl in Key West-- $40 for drinks at five bars and a free t-shirt, along with a guide to tell stories as you go from place to place. I guess a lot of it has to do with the vibe of the crowd, but we had the best time. We were so glad we didn't go off on our own as we had planned. I would highly recommend it. Our second excursion-- snorkeling in Cayman-- was canceled due to windy weather and we had nothing planned for Jamaica. We went into both towns to do some shopping, but could have lived without it. With 5 cruises behind us, the novelty has worn off, and the experience is what matters. If the weather had cooperated, I would give this cruise a 9. We love Carnival-- we're not either real high-brow or low-brow-- just average middle-class from the Northeast. It fits us well. We find the staff to be charming and accommodating, the accommodations to be comfortable and the value-- amazing. There were signs here and there that Carnival is cutting back a bit, but so is my business. We all are today, so I can't fault them. We enjoyed it enough that we booked another while on board (and we already had another booked)!

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Jan 4, 2010

Panama

We've cruised on Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, NCL and finally Carnival, having been hesitant to go on a Carnival cruise in the past because of its less-than-classy reputation. My travel agent and travel companion highly recommended these Conquest Class ships so we tried it. Well, it was everyone's favorite ship to date! Great kids, teens programs and water-park-like atmosphere coupled with two adults only decks including a pool and several adults-only

jacuzzis. We called them the Serenity Deck and the Insanity Deck. Everyone in the family was happy. Several of the shows were very entertaining, several not so hot. The cruise director is Wee Jimmy, a lunatic from Scotland who is like a stand-up comedian. Made the overall atmosphere really fun. Would love to go on this ship again. The food was better than expected because we had an amazing waitress who made great recommendations every night. We miss Simona :-( On the minus side: could just use more shops, or bring merchandise elsewhere for special sales; more a la carte restaurants...we did not enjoy the Sun King. Very stuffy atmosphere and barely adequate food, drowning in butter and cream and lacking in balance in terms of both flavor and texture. An none of it was hot enough. Too bad; it's a beautiful facility. Think most people knew this, as it was quite small and never full. Nice and large. Very clean. Well serviced. Great stuff for kids, broken into specific age groups. Two adults-only decks that were nice and quiet. Our choices: Panama - Gatun Locks & the St. Lorenzo Fort Costa Rica - zip line that was 990 feet tall Cozumel - sail, snorkel & beach party Great experience. Love this ship. Something for everyone. Good food. Very good entertainment and service. Spacious cabins. Very clean. Would love to sail on this ship again.

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Dec 27, 2009

western caribbean

Just got off the ship today. beautiful ship. We always get a balcony, this time we had two balcony rooms for us and the kids. It was great the door opened on the balcony so we could walk back and forth and enjoy a large balcony. We sailed for the itenary. you can only go to the grand caymans so many times. nice change. we cruise frequently so we know what to expect. Room steward was the happiest man on the planet. It was contagious. Our 12 year old

enjoyed club c, but i think he grew bored with it. the cruise director, wee jimmy, was a total disappointment. Not funny, had a stupid morning show on the jumbotron on lido deck that was so loud and obnoxious. He is not funny, wore a kilt. The dining room expeerience was the worst ever. bad food, worse service. i stood in line at guest services to adjust the gratituity. the last night the waiter informed us it was his first week on the job. felt bad for him, worse for us/ he should of warned us the first night. The lido deck lounge chair sitution is bad, i think people get up at 6 am and thro towels on chairs. staff should reel that in. There is only one shuffelboard game. Whats up with that its just paint. Entertainment by casino was so fun. The band was great. So was the bar staff there. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze. We will cruise carnival again. but much prefer Royal Carribbean one world. Awful. great. Typical carnival balcony. We were on the 10th floor. Loved it there/ we had two balcony rooms, one for us, one for the kids. the balcony had a seperating door which we opened up to be one larger balcony. we could also walk to each others rooms via the balcony. so-so/ Cruise director has ran his course. He was not funny. He enjoyed himself alot more than I did. has this stupid morning show blarring on the jumbo=tron on lido. it goes until 11 so loud, so obnoxious. Couldnt understand the staff on the blarring speakers on the jumbo tron. the kilt wee jimmy as he calls himself was not flattering. not so much happening if it wasnt for us bringing uno and dominos it could of got boring. bingo very expensive. Mini=golf was fun. only one shuffle board. need a rock climbing wall. lol We did not typical excursions because we have did pretty much everything. We did the amazing race in cozumel. alot of fun. alot of running. If you enjoy the show, you will enjoy this white water rafting in costa rica was a blast. So much fun. and of course, when in panama, go to the canal. All in all average. great ship, great rooms, great room steward, totally fun excursoins(spent about $1000 for a family of four) Terrible food. Bad service in dining room. was a great value if you skip the excursions. But why would you?

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Nov 12, 2009

Western Caribbean

Although we enjoyed ourselves, we would not cruise on Carnival again. In one word, it lacked the "elegance" we were accustomed to on earlier Princess Cruises. The clientele are different - with many more children (about 700 on our cruise) so a difference is to be expected. We chose it because we brought our 4 children along (ages 17 - 26) and they enjoyed it - as it was their first cruise. It was slightly less expensive compared with Princess.

We also strongly prefer the "personal choice" option for dinner seating. The shore excursions were better value for the money compared with earlier Princess cruises. Food in the formal dining rooms was excellent, as was the service. The buffet restaurant lacked the elegance compared with Princess. One indicator is that bacon is served to you by kitchen staff and not self-serve. It is obvious that this is a cost-saving measure; they have learned that if they allow self-serve, then people eat more bacon and that is too expensive. Inside room was comfortable and comparable to Sun & Island Princess. The "Ticket to Ride (Beatles) Show was the best entertainment we have seen. It was fantastic. Beyond that show though, there was little and the evening entertainment is important to us. "Swimming with the stingrays" was the highlight of the vacation. Don't miss it. The primary problems we found related to the ship itself. 1) Swimming pools, too small, salty water and always too crowded. Even the "adult only" pool was simply too full, i.e. too many people just standing in the water; impossible to swim. 2) Dining rooms: the two dining rooms are on the same level with the galley in between. The one dining room is at the back of the ship, directly above the engine and on the first night, the table vibrated enough to create a standing wave in my water glass. Very unnerving. We asked for an alternate table and that worked out - but if that other table had not been available, it would have been a very disappointing cruise. Also, with the two restaurants at the same level, if you were in the center of the ship and wanted to get to the end restaurant, you either had to go up two floors or down one to get to the entrance to the end restaurant. Not nearly as convenient as the Sun or Island Princess where the two dining rooms are on top of each other. 3) No promenade: On Princess, there was an outdoor promenade on Level 7 (I think) where one could walk entirely around the perimeter of the ship. On Carnival Freedom, there was no such promenade; also, when going from one part of the ship to another, it often meant having to go up or down. Very little "throughways" (the restaurant was just one example).

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Sep 25, 2009

Eastern

I've traveled on Carnival once, but I fell in love in Royal Caribbean's quality. My budget was a little tight this year, so we picked up Carnivals deal with few expectations. I don't know what the people who are complaining are talking about, but embarkation took only 15 to 20 minutes. The ocean view room #1301 was very good and the room was spacious when compared to Royal Caribbean's Mariner. I was very pleased with our Stateroom. The Oceanview

room was bigger than the Balcony that I had on Royal Caribbean last year. The quality of the food was pretty good, but there was one night the buffet was a little cold. All in all, the food was great. The quality of the food in the dining room was great. The food quality was good the majority of the time. There was just one experience that I had, where the food wasn't good and not well done. It was actually the night of the captain's ball and we decided to eat in the buffet, bad decision. There was always activity throughout the ship. The comedians were ok and the show that everyone hypes, called 'ticket to ride' (Beatles), actually was dry and boring. D.J Chippy in the 70's club played the same Atlanta HIp hop daily. I asked him if he could play dance hall and he looked as if I said a foreign word. He asked if I meant Reggae and I said no Dance Hall. The islands were great and my wife and I decided that we're retiring to either S.t Thomas on Tortola V.I. This year we didn't do a ton of excursions and the one we wanted to do, booked quickly. Make sure you book the ATV excurion in Antigua ahead of time. We took the tours on the islands and we hung out on the beaches. It was cool to learn more about the island, because you can jetski anywhere(I live in Florida). On a scale of 1 to 10, I give my cruise experience a high 7 or a low 8. I would do it again. The experience was too much to tell, go for yourself and get your own experience.

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Aug 24, 2009

caribbean

We went to Hell and back...this was the worst cruise ever! There is a reason they are cheap. Do not take Carnival! The food was horrible. My sister has a food allergy and even with adequate knowledge, they treated us like dirt. They kept asking us if we were on the list, telling us the ship didn't have soy milk or saying flat out that there was nothing she could eat. The incident that topped all others was when we told the waiter about my sisters'

allergy to milk and cheese they suggested mac and cheese for her to eat! The cabin steward never came down to turn up the beds making the kids were unable to go to bed since you need a key to open the bunk beds. This was the worst trip of our lives. Between being told I couldn't bring my registered service animal on the boat because it was supposedly illegal under the ADA, having the staff scream at us literally, being treated like dirt....I am currently filing a law suit. The requirement you need in order to work on carnival as staff is to have a nasty attitude, be rude, refuse to accommodate those with allergies or disabilities and serve people with a frown. Otherwise, you do not qualify. Do not take any Carnival cruises - especially freedom or you will regret it. Spend the money and take Royal or Norwegian. Nothing can be worse than Carnival.

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Aug 2, 2009

Eastern Carribean

This was the largest ship we have yet to be on, it was great! The hallways wide enough for two to walk side by side. The staff great as usual. The food was pretty good, the buffet always surprises me and a couple of nights I wished we had eaten dinner there instead of the dining room. This was a full ship with lots of kids so the adults only pool and whirlpool is where we hung out. However, I wish it was a little nicer with plants or something,

it was kind of stark. A really neat hot tub is hidden away in the gym. The only thing I did not like was the way this boat was decorated, it is horrible as far as this goes. I thought it was very jumbled up and not very classy. The changing lights in the atrium where neat but the overall decoration is bad. The Beetles tribute in the show lounge was by far the best entertainment I have yet to experience, don't miss it! All the shows where great! I have not been disappointed yet by Carnivals ability to entertain you. Do go to the Virgin Gorda and the Baths in Tortula, Meagan Bay in St. Thomas, nice but not as nice as the build up makes it. Our room was very nice; we had a balcony (the only way to go). It was great, quiet, we did not fell any movement on this ship even though the weather was not so nice. On board activities where great, this ship has a giant screen for movies which was nice at night.

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Jun 29, 2009

Western Caribbean

Beware Carnival Bait and Switch tactics. My wife and I booked an oceanview with two twin beds, on the Freedom, directly with Carnival. When we arrived onboard, the cabin was an oceanview with one twin bed and a pullout sofa bed. This was not the cabin that was described by the Carnival salesman. We were told by the Purser's desk they would not know if there was another cabin available until we were 2 1/2 hours out to sea. If we got off the ship

before it departed we would not have our money refunded. We could also disembark at our first port of call, Panama, 2 days later, and pay our own way back. After the ship departed, the only cabin available was an interior room across the hall. Since neither my wife or I could physically sleep on a pullout bed without having back problems, we took the claustrophobic cabin with 2 twins pushed together. Bottom line, we paid for an oceanview and wound up with an interior cabin. Carnival has yet to respond to the letter that we sent 2 weeks ago detailing these problems. Buyer beware. The food was plentiful but average. If you would like to cut the calories may I recommend ordering the prime rib. 3 bites are the most that you will get. The rest is fat. The seafood dishes are probably the way to go. The good news is that if you find that you don't like what you have ordered the wait staff is happy to bring you a replacement. For lunchtime sandwiches, the Deli is excellent. They also have a very good Asian station. The lines are very long (20-30 minute wait) because the process of preparing the food is somewhat laborious. We did not experience the Supper Club but 2 of our tablemates said it was very good. The stateroom that we wound up in was an interior cabin. You have more elbow room in a CAT scan. The shower backed up and overflowed all over the bathroom floor the first time I used it. The repair fellow said it was due to sand clogging the drain. I guess there is a first time for everything. If you have taken a cruise before you know what the onboard activities are like. The English MC (they must have a farm near Leeds that churns these guys out) that introduces the "Come on kids, let's put on a show" productions. The "naughty" comedian. The sing-a-long piano player that had the bartender next door rolling his eyes. There wasn't enough $5.46 (gratutity included) Bud's to help this guy. If you're a Bingo player there always seems to be a game ongoing. The casino was relatively big with the majority of the space dedicated to slots. They also had roulette, blackjack, craps and an electronic Texas Hold'Em table. The gym was very well laid out with new machines and a terrific view of the ocean. If you are a cigar smoker, the Habana Bar is outstanding. With over 900 kids on board, this was the perfect hideout. Let's not forget the Art Auctions. Not to worry, they won't let you forget them. The promotion is non-stop. All in all the activities are relentlessy upbeat. What did Shakespeare say about the sound and the fury? If you are going on a shore excursion may I suggest that you book it before sailing. I believe the prices are considerably higher onboard. We did not get off the ship in Panama. 2 of our tablemates went on the Panama Canal tour which they liked. Our other tablemates went on the Panama City excursion which they thought very overpriced. In Costa Rica we went on an excursion that was cut short by either the President landing in town or the workers at a bananna plantation throwing rocks at tourist buses like ours in protest of working conditions. Our tour guide gave us both versions and then said he wasn't really sure why we couldn't complete the tour. The line was fairly long and ugly demanding a refund from the Shore Excursion folks. Glad to say, I didn't even bother. In Belize, we hired a cab (despite the dire warnings of the shore excursion personnel) to take us to a man made beach in an area called Old Belize. They had a zip line, 100 foot water slide, saltwater pool and clean rest rooms. By the way, the taxi driver asked us what time did we want to be picked up and came back just as promised. My wife and I have been on 5 previous cruises (including Carnival) and have always had a great time. This was a disaster. Even the service which is always very personable was at best perfunctory. It's one thing, if you book a cruise online and you have issues but it's quite another when you deal directly with the cruise line itself, have issues and they don't even respond. In any economy that is unacceptable, let alone this one. If I were you, I would think long and hard before I risked my hard earned money on a Carnival vacation.

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Mar 31, 2009

Western Caribbean

First cruise for my wife and I. Had never really had an interest in it, but she and friends convinced me to try it. We loved it, especially the service and the entertainment options. We could relax when we wanted to or find a variety of activities to enjoy. The crew was great, with a few minor exceptions. It took us a couple of days to get into it and to learn where things were, etc. The best days were the last few, but they were all enjoyable.

I had read prior reviews so what we found exceeded our expectations. The food quality was good to very good, considering the number of people being served. A great variety of foods on the Lido deck for breakfast and lunch from casual foods like pizza and hot dogs to ethnic and theme foods, fresh and bountiful salad fixings and other buffet type items. It took a couple of days to find where all the food locations were. We ate dinner each evening in our assigned dining room (Chic), except for one night when we made reservations for the Sun King Supper Club. In Chic, some of the beef dishes were a little on the chewy side, but overall the quality was very good. I tend toward seafood and those were good to great. Some items were exceptionally well prepared. Overall the quality was better than I what I expected, considering the number of meals they were serving at any one time. The servce was FANTASTIC. We felt pampered, and the wait staff was very attentive. They seemed to anticipate what we wanted and brought it. Several times when I debated over different appetizers or desserts, our server would bring me one of each, even though I had only ordered one of them. After the first couple of nights, he knew what I liked and would suggest or point out something on the menu that he thought I would enjoy. On some nights the entree choices were mostly Beef or seafood dishes, but on others there was a greater variety. I didn't go on the cruise for the food, so I was pleased with what they offered. We had a great table for eight and most evenings we were there for about two hours, enjoying our dinner and conversing with our table companions. No one hurried us. We ordered room service breakfast on a morning when we had an early excursion and it was handled perfectly. The Sun King was worth the extra $30 per person. This was our romantic evening of intimate dining. We felt like we were the favorite customer of an exclusive restaurant and were treated accordingly. The number of entrees was limited to mostly steaks and seafood, but the quality was excellent; my filet was prepared just the way I like iit and ordered it. The extra sauteed mushrooms I ordered with it were the best I have ever had. The presentation of the food was superb. We both thought that the qualiy of the beverages was very good, especially the featured daily tropical drinks. The prices were what I expected and even under what I would expect to pay at a resort lounge for drinks of the type and size we had. Service in the lounges was great. We had an outside stateroom on the second deck, with a window. The room was fine and there was plenty of closet and drawer space for us; not sure how it work for a family or three or more people. Besides our bed we had a couch and occasional chair, along with a chair for the built in desk/vanity. Our room was toward the bow and near the first bank of elevators. That was great, as it gave us easy and quick access to the theatre and to the lobby deck one level above. Service with our room was great. I had ordered a bottle of Asti at embarkation but we did not open it for two more nights. Our room steward kept bringing in fresh ice and refilling the wine bucket each day, besides the ice in the regular ice bucket. We visited another passenger who had a similar room on a higher deck, but with a balcony. The balcony was very nice, but it took away from the space in the room, so that ours was roomier than the more expensive room with a balcony. There were a lot of activities, for all ages and interests. We could only sample some of them. Lounges are numerous and varied, and the entertainment was very good. The "house band" was better than I expected and we heard them play at the shows, as well as, combinations of them playing at other times and venues. Great variety of music, from lounge singers and pianists on up. There were a lot of families with children on board, as well as college students on spring break, but there were places and activities to appeal to everyone. If you wanted to be with the younger crowd, you hung out on the Lido deck amidships; if you wanted a quieter, adult area you could go to the aft part of the deck with an an adults only pool and whirlpool, or to some of the lounges and quiet areas on other decks. Stingray City at the Grand Caymans was fantastic, although it had been windy for several days so there was some wave action, which made it difficult to snorkel for any length of time. Rum Point beach was nice too. Dunn's River Falls at Ocho Rios was great, and the guides did a fine job. We also opted for the Bamboo Beach Club, which I had some reservations about after reading some reviews. But our experience there was great and we enjoyed the sun, the surf, and the rum punch. The foods was nothing to get excited about, but it was included and not the reason we were there. The service was very good; we were offered more drinks and food than we could handle. Overall, our day in Jamaica was the best of our three days at ports. As it was our first cruise experience, we relied on the Internet, what other people told us, and quizzed people we met at boarding time and on the ship about various things. People in general, whether other passengers or crew, were very helpful. There were a few things that could have been done better or differently, but we had a great overall experience. I would expect our second cruise to be even better, now that we have learned "some of the ropes." The price was reasonable and I thought we got great value, when you consider the accomodations, food, amenities and entertainment that were included. We will cruise again, and will certainly have Carnival at the top of the list we make our plans.

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Mar 24, 2009

Carribean

- Do not get a cabin below the dining rooms. Had noise from the cleaning staff all night long. I complained 5 times to no avail, went up the dining room and asked if they could simply lift the chairs rather than drag them across the floor, they said they would try, but did not. It was REALLY unnerving. However they did offer a cash refund, but I just wanted to sleep!! - Safe: They want you to use a credit card to activate the safe, but where do you

hide the card afterwards????? - Excursions: It seems that the excursions that Carnival offered had not been researched. We went on "biking through an Caribbean village." We spent over 3 hours on a bouncing bus ride, only to go on a one mile bike ride. Similar issue with the "two Oceans by rail." -Always trying to sell you things. Sell sell sell. It was like arriving at a port with all the vendors. Even the cruise director on the last night was trying to convince people to buy!! - Hidden cost: So many hidden cost. Always look twice!! - Alcohol: They charge soooo much for alcohol. They paint you in a corner, not allowing you to bring alcohol and then charging you so much. - Yoga: Charging 12 dollars for Yoga!!!!! Yes I paid only because I didn't know. Food - it was fine, sometimes great other times just fine. Onboard activities - did not do many, but there were many to select from.

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Nov 30, -0001

Caribbean

This was our third cruise and the best so far. We travel a lot having visited all 50 states, Canada and Mexico, and this was one of our best vacations. Ours was an eight day cruise departing from Port Everglades. The food was excellent. The Warm Chocolate Melting Cake is my favorite. The three course meals served in the dining room are excellent. We have stayed at the Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia five times and the food

on the cruise, in my opinion, is far superior than The Greenbrier, as was the service. The wait staff assigned to our table was Jorge from Honduras and Wensedlau from Guatalemo. Both gentlemen provided excellent service and made it a pleasurable experience. The breakfast bar, buffets and dessert bars were resplendent offering most any food item one would want. We were upgraded to stateroom 9215 on the Lido deck. The Lido deck is the deck with the pool and buffets. Our stateroom was about a two minute walk to those areas which was most convenient. This stateroom was larger than the room we had on the two previous cruises. The bathroom was larger and better laid out plus there was a vanity area in the stateroom. Our stateroom attendant provided excellent service and greeted us by name each time he saw us. There seemed to be a lot of activities onboard. We went to the gym and I liked the steamroom. Each day, we walked at least 2 miles around the walking track. The 2 1/2 days at sea, we sit out by the pool and read. The first Sunday, we watch Miami Dolphin vs. the Baltimore Ravens and on the 8th, we watched the BCS playoff between Oklahoma and Florida. That was a unique experience. We watched the nightly 6:00 movie before our late seating dinner. After dinner, we went to the Victoriana Lounge and watched the 10:30 show. I liked the Big Easy and the Superstar show, which featured some passengers, but my favorite was Ticket to Ride. This show was a tribute to the Beatles and most exhilarating of all the shows. Tia Thompson and the two comedy shows were good also. In my opinion, the Carnival dancers, singers and orchestra were of the same caliber as those appearing in Vegas shows. If you are a cat lover, in San Juan you must walk the scenic walkway below the Castillo San Felipe del Morro. There are 100's of cats living there. In St. Thomas, we rented a motorcycle and toured the island. In St. Thomas, they drive on the left hand side of the road and the road has some huge potholes. Unless you are a skilled motorcycle operator, I wouldn't recommended this. In Antigua, we hired a driver from Pelican tours. Almond Peters drove us around the island pointing out various places and giving us a history lesson along the way. I was surprised to see the donkeys, mules, sheep and goats that roamfree in the fileds and along the roads. The donkeys and mules were used as service animals but were set free when their owners acquired cars. In Tortola we rented a jeep and circled the island. We stopped at a beach called Josiah's Bay. It looked like it would be a nice, quiet place to stay or spend the day on a future visit. In Nassau, we signed up for a Catamaran harbor tour/snorkeling trip. That wasn't very nice. A Catamaran, it wasn't. It looked like a miniature ferry boat, I'm not sure what the boat is called. The lady did give a lot of detail about Paradise Island - the Island across from Nassau, but the water was too cold for snorkeling, as a cold front had come in the night before. The weather couldn't be helped, but they took us to snorkel in the harbor at the end of Paradise Island. On a previous trip, we booked an underwater sub and snorkeling trip with Stuart Cove's. They took us to a secluded area that is called Hollywood Bowl as that is where Jaws, Into the Blue and other movies were filmed. The water was calmer and clearer. I highly recommend Stuart Coves for excursions. We had the best time. Given the accommodations, food choices, service, entertainment, etc. we think this cruise was a great deal. We are looking forward to cruising again to other locations, maybe even to Alaska or on a European cruise.

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