May 5-10, 2007
5:45 pm dinning Horizon
Port of Jacksonville, FL is an easy port for embarkation. From the time we arrived at port to getting on the ship was less than 45 min. The staff inside the customs building were helpful and quick.
Once on the ship we dropped off our carry on bags in our cabin and headed up to the Lido deck (10) for some lunch. Lines were forming on both sides for lunch. Salads, Pizza, and Sandwiches are done in another area of this dining room. After lunch we went back to our cabin to unpack our carry ons and freshen up a bit. The stateroom was clean with beds made up into a king, the bathroom clean with no hint mildew in the shower. We did have a major problem with the shower, it would not ajust the water temp. It was hot or cold nothing warm. We called about this and they sent someone within 15 min to fix the problem...turns out it was major. It took about 2 hours to fix it enough to be able to take a shower, still not perfect but at least we wouldn't stink by the 3rd day. Back up to the Lido deck for sunshine and music. Bags arrived at the cabin about an hour before dinner.
Muster drill was quick. Everyone must attend with lifejackets. Your safty is # 1 with this line.
Dinner in the Horizen dining room (aft) Service was outstanding. Food was great some nights and not so great on others, meat a little tough or over cooked. Desserts are always good. The staff will sing and dance on some nights. I felt like family.
Shows in the Astoria Lounge were good. Good job to the dancers working while we were moving. The late night adult comedy shows were in the Islands in the Stream Lounge. The first comic I almost slept through his act, zzzzzzzzz. The next guy was OK, but the last one Kim, I had seen on my last sailing 3 months ago on a diff ship. She is funny.
Key West FL was the first stop. We arrived at 7 am. Nothing is open at this time here so we stayed on the ship and ate breakfast in the dining room. Eggs Benedict, yummy. We got off the ship around 9 am and headed for our Trolley Tour. We booked this at the Trolleys website and saved a few bucks over the ships price. Was a good tour to see as much of key West as possible in a short amount of time 1 1/2 hours. We were sailing at 3.
Heading to and from Nassau were rough waters. Sea sickness bags were place at all stairwells and elevators on these days. I guess we were lucky not to get sick because a lot of passangers sure were.
In Nassau, arrived at 11am, Booked a tour though Carnivals website, It didn't start till 1pm so we went to the straw market just off the ship and took a look around. About 12:45 we headed to gangway outside the ship for our planned tour. We were packed like sardines into taxi vans and we were off. Historical / Pirates tour. Next time just the Historical tour for me. I have been to Nassau before but had never seen the island. This was the tour for that. I do wish we could have spent more time at the forts, Fincastle and Charlotte. Having only 15 min at each stop was not enough time to do anything but take a few PIC's.The Pirates of Nassau tour was a bust, unless you are at the front of the tour you miss everything. The few things we did see were kinda OK. The ship sailed form here at 10pm so if you wanted to head over to Paridise Island to see Atlantis you could. We stayed on the ship after the tour and got lazy.
High Tea on sea days were very nicely done. No one had to dress up for these, it is resort wear here. Enjoyed this relaxing time with soft live piano music in the background.
Time spent in the casino was good. The staff here makes you feel welcome. There is a wide selection on slots and table games on this small ship. Even Texas Hold Em was being played while we were at sea.
The ship's decorations are nice, elegant and not like they were..futuristic. This is toned down.
Disembarkation could be done better. Self assist passangers ( carry all your own bags off the ship) were called by floor. Those of us who placed our bags out the night before were all called last and all at once. It was mice to the cheese maze and very crowded. Finding our bags was easy. Not only do they place them by floor they now also place them by foreward or aft. This made finding our bags very easy. Going through cusoms was a breeze. A short walk to the parking lot and your back to real life again.
This was a fun short cruise close to home. I would sail this ship again just for the service alone. The Captain and his crew should be proud. They made this cruiser happy.