Where do I begin? We left to drive to Galveston (a 5 hour drive) and stayed at Laquinta hotel right across from the beach the night before since my husband didn't want to get up early and drive in. Hotel was expensive (143.00/night) but was nice. Was relaxed and played in the water hitting the waves. Next day we checked out (Sunday) and drove to park at EZ parking. I had reserved a spot on the internet about 3 months prior and it cost 40.00 to park. Very secure, very easy checkin! They didn't start shuttling people over to the cruise terminal until about 11 because others were departing the ship, so we walked with our luggage (if you have wheels, its not bad at all). Otherwise, you can wait until 11ish to check in. When we got to the terminal, our luggage was put aside and we were directed to the point of check in. I had filled out everything prior (funpass) and since we had VIP checkin, we only waited about 30 min to get checked in. They only have 2 rows of chairs and the rest are lines -- but they take the chairs first since those are the people who were there first. We were escorted to our VIP checkin - and within 15 min we were on the boat. FIRST people on the boat! Went straight to our room to check it out. We were on the Veranda deck. and our cabin steward was Seleme (who transferred over to the Liberaty at the end of the cruise). He was great.
To give you a little highlights and not bore you with specifics -- our waiters name was CoCo (nickname) and he was awesome. We were allowed to wear shorts in the first day since not everyone had luggage. We had our luggage an hour after we boarded! The rest of the nights (except for formal) we wore jeans and a shirt along with hundreds of others who were in jeans and the pants that go mid calf. Since we had been on many cruises and are not dressy up people, formal night was pants and nice shirt. They had people from all out glitter to what we wore - pants/shirt and everything in between.
Our room, as I said was on the Veranda deck and (top front of the ship). No rocking, motion AT all! Didn't have to even wear a patch! The only dissappointment with the room was 1-- it was HOT the first 2 days! Really uncomfortable and 2- the balcony was not a balcony that overlooked the water, but another deck below us. If I would have known that, I surly would not have spent $$ on a balcony, but on an oceanview instead. Other than that, we didn't have a problem.
In Progresso, we went on the City tour to MErida and Rodeo show. ONly did that one because my dad had limited mobility. Had a great time in Merida looking at the old churches, city halls, etc - and the rodeo was nice, but nothing I would want to do again.
In Cozumel, my husband and daughter went horsebackriding and had a total blast! They both would do it again in a heartbeat! I stayed with my dad and pushed the wheelchair down town shopping. We docked at a different dock than we did last time. I actually liked the other dock better (the one where there is a pier with shops and you can sit and have chips and marguaritas).
In Belize, we went cave tubing and I would recommend it to anyone. It was a total blast and well worth the money paid! We went with the cruiselines for all excursions.
The ship was extremely clean, all employees were great and helpful. They did have bunches of teens on the ship (end of year senior trips) but they didn't bother us. The sun went down and they came out...lol.
The food was good - and you actually got tired of eating! We didn't eat in the dining room all nights. The entertainment was ok, but I have seen better. The cruisedirector was about a 4 on a scale of 1-10. His name was George, I think -- called him HoreHay after 5pm (if I spelled it right). He wasn't the greatest, as I had heard the same jokes on other carnival ships. I think Carnival should find different things -- seems each carnival trip I go on is the same as far as activities, jokes, shows, etc. Doesn't stop me from going, but I would like to see something different among the ships.
All in all, it was a very relaxing trip - as since I have seen all the activities (newleywed game, etc I skipped some and just relaxed). The ship is beautiful, clean and excellent staff. Any quesitons? You can email me - no problem mon....
Cheryl (next cruise........Alaska in September 2005!)