Number of Cruises: 3
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Legend
Sailing Date: April 26th, 2006
Itinerary: Eastern Caribbean
Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival Legend Cruise Review
Embarkation: We live in PA so we took a bus to the Port Authority and then a taxi to the ship. It was very chaotic as the Norwegian Dawn and Carnival Legend were both letting passengers off and on at the same time. Lots of pushing and shoving. After we wound our way through the crowd, we got into the terminal. We went through security, then into another line to show our documents and get our sail and sign cards. Total time was about 1&1/2 hours. We were on the Lido Deck having lunch by 1:30. After lunch, we went to the purser’s desk to activate our sail and sign cards. We chose to use cash, although credit/debit cards are acceptable also. We got the early dinner seating as we requested so we didn’t need to visit the Maitre’d.
Cabins: We were in Cabin 8142, Panorama Deck, Port Side, Forward. We were lucky to be upgraded to an extended balcony, which we really enjoyed. There was plenty of storage for clothes. Since we were traveling with our 2 sons, (10 & 5), the sofa was made up as a bed and there was another bed that folded down from the ceiling. Our 2 beds were pushed together to make one and it was very comfortable. The bathroom was bigger than we expected. The bowl of “freebies” in the bathroom was nice. There was mints, mouthwash, razors, etc. Having dispensers of body soap and shampoo in the shower was very handy. Our room steward was very attentive but we hardly saw him all week. I swear that he was hiding under our bed because every time we came back to our room, it looked perfect! There is a mini-bar and we asked our steward to unlock it so that we could put some bottles of water and soda inside. I’ll add a note here about laundry. The ship offers a laundry service on a couple days. They give you a paper bag to fill with dirty laundry and they will take care of it for $15. Well, with a family of 4, we were not able to pack too much stuff in that bag and they only offer one bag per cabin. I did find the launderette on Deck 7. The washer and dryer was $2 each and a box of Tide was $1. Not too bad as that was much cheaper than the $15 special and we were able to wash a much bigger load than what would have fit in that bag. The only drawback was that there was only 2 washers (1 of them was broken much of the week) and 4 dryers. Also, there was no change machine in the launderette. You had to either go to the casino or the Pursers’ Desk to get quarters.
Camp Carnival: Our boys loved it! I think they spent more time in Camp than they did with us. They even went to dinner with the Camp kids and counselors. On the first night, we went to the camp orientation and got the schedule for the week. The kids picked and chose what they wanted to do. There were also family activities. The camp was closed from 12-2 and from 4:45-5:45. They even took the kids to a couple of the shows at night. Our oldest son was able to sign himself in and out of the activities. You can also opt out of this and have a parent sign the child in and out. We had 2-way radios with us so we felt comfortable knowing where he was. The camp counselors were awesome. They were very caring and interacted with the kids wonderfully. On the last sea day, there was a kids’ talent show and the counselor made each one of the participants feel so special. The camp’s hours are from 9 a.m.-10 p.m. with the breaks mentioned above. There is babysitting available from 10 p.m.-3 a.m. The charge for this is $6/hr. for the first child and $4/hr. for each additional sibling. They also held PJ parties after hours for the same charges as listed above.
Casino: We played the slots a couple of times and broke even. We didn’t spend too much time there, as it was pretty smoky and usually very crowded.
Entertainment: Jazz Hot and Take II were both very good shows. The dancers and singers were very talented. The Follies Lounge is a beautiful room with 3 levels of seating and a decent size stage.
Ship Décor: Keeping in mind the ships’ name, there were legendary and mythical figures everywhere. The pictures in the elevators, the murals in the stairwells, not to mention the urns. They were everywhere! You could find them on the legs of tables, lining the stairways in the lobby, etc. You get used to seeing them after a couple of days. The Enchanted Forest in the front of the ship was a nice quiet place to read.
Activities: Our sea days were packed with things to do. We actually didn’t get to do everything we wanted because we had to pick and choose. There were lots of trivia games, Newlywed & Not-so-Newlywed game, Bingo, Arts & Crafts, Hairiest Chest Competition, just to name a few. Our Cruise Director was Trevor Block. His assistant was Jake and our Social Hosts were Andrew, Julia and Ruben. They made all of the games and activities lots of fun. By the end of the week, they all seemed like part of our family. The passengers on the ship are divided into teams: Red, White or Blue. Every time a passenger competes in or wins a game, their team gets points. At the end of the week, the winning team is announced. During dinner each night, the Maitre’d gives the points for each team and the standings. We enjoyed this friendly rivalry and it did allow the passengers to get to know each other. The pools and hot tubs were always crowded. We didn’t notice a lot of chair saving and we could usually find somewhere to camp out.
I’ll add a note here about the ships photographers. They were everywhere! Every night before dinner, when you leave the ship, they are there. Of course, the pictures turn out so good you want to take them all home. Unfortunately, they are quite pricey. An 8x10 is $19.95. They do offer some specials during the week like a free frame, etc.
Food: What can I say? Everything was great! We ate in the dining room almost every night. Each morning in our cabin we checked on the TV to see what the menu was for that night and we could choose to eat in the dining room or the buffet on the Lido Deck. The waiter and his assistant in the dining room were very attentive. They knew our kids’ names after the first night and that they liked chicken nuggets and fries. They kept the saltines coming for my older son when we had a bumpy night, and had a fruit cup waiting at the table for our youngest son each evening. They have awesome memories. Pretty impressive since they see so many people each cruise. We ate breakfast and lunch on the Lido Deck. It was the same menu each day. There was French toast, pancakes, eggs made to order, bacon, ham, sausage, pastries, oatmeal, grits. For lunch, there was a different international theme each day or you could get deli sandwiches, pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs and salad bar. Everything was delicious. The pizza was available 24 hours a day as was soft serve ice cream. Beverages included ice tea, lemonade, fruit punch and fruit juices for breakfast. Hot chocolate, coffee and hot tea were also available. Soda was not free. Each can of soda costs about $2, including the 15% gratuity. You can purchase a Fountain Card if you drink lots of soda. There is one for the kids and one for the adults. The kids’ card was approximately $30 and the adult card was approximately $40. I guess you need to figure out how many sodas a day you will consume to see if it is worth while to purchase the card. As we don’t drink much alcohol, I can’t comment on the beer and drink prices. I did, however, have one of the drinks of the day and it was around $6 in a plastic souvenir glass. The drink servers are everywhere! It can get a little annoying at times. Especially in the Follies Lounge when you are there for Bingo, a show, Trivia, whatever. At one point, we counted 5 servers and they were relentless. We got a little tired of saying “No, thank you.”
Ports: We arrived in San Juan at 3 p.m. We got off the ship and just walked around and shopped. We arrived in St. Thomas at 7 a.m. the next day. We got a taxi to Coral World and Coki Beach and spent the day there. It was much cheaper to do that than to book a shore excursion through the ship. About 1/2 price actually. St. Thomas is beautiful. We arrived in Tortola the next day and took a taxi tour of the island. Our driver was great. He took us to a beach and all around the island.
We had a wonderful time aboard the Carnival Legend.
Everything pretty much exceeded our expectations. We would definitely consider a
Carnival cruise again. We would most definitely not leave from New York again.
The weather and the seas were a little too rough for us at times and we would
like to be able to visit more ports and have less sea days.