Number of Cruises: 3
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Liberty
Sailing Date: August 1, 2005
Carnival Cruise Lines
12-day Mediterranean cruise
August 1st, 2005
Carnival Liberty is one of the newest ships of the fleet. It was impressively big. Being a new ship it was very nice and clean. We found our stateroom with a large queen to king size bed (probably 2 twin beds put together) with comfortable down pillows and down comforter. The bathroom was a good size, clean, great water pressure, and plenty shelving for all your amenities. Good closet space. Being in a stateroom on the 1st deck was impressive compared to other 2 cruise ships we have been on with windows and the other with a port hole. Although during the last few days we noticed the smell of fumes in the early morning followed by the scent of flowers to cover up the smell. You can probably sleep through it unless you wake up too early in the morning. I am unsure if its due to being on the 1st deck.
I think Carnival put a lot of emphasis on comfort no matter what room you’re in on this new cruise ship. This ship is quoted to be a “Family Fun Ship” so there were a lot of kids running around on board. If you’re not used to kids running around this is not for you. But this ship does have activities for kids and teenagers.
The crew was very pleasant. Practically every crew member said “hi” to us as we walked around the ship. Our room was always kept clean. The cruise director , John Heald, does put the “F” in “Fun ship”, he was very entertaining. The entertainment was top notch in their main theatre, it was hard to find seating especially if you have the late dinner seating. The other lounges were not very busy. We are age 40 and 38 and we love to dance. The dance club was pretty much empty (disappointing for us) as were most lounges during the 12 day cruise. The piano bar/lounge always had a lot of people. I guess the age group could have determined which lounges would have been packed. The casino was a very good size as compared to other ship casinos.
The buffets had a good variety. But need improvement in the dessert department. We were not impressed with the late night buffet. The late night buffet, which was held on one of the pool decks, was just grilled burgers, hotdogs, pasta, an occasional meat platter, fruits, dessert and pizza. Pizza was served 24hrs a day. There were only 2 nights that the ship actually had a late night buffet in the buffet room.
Having gone on 2 previous cruises, we were not impressed with this ship’s sit down dinner. The service was so slow. It took two hours to serve a 5 course meal. We missed a part or sometimes all of the main shows due to being served so slowly. We were kind of upset that we were told to show up on time for dinner so we can be served on time. The first 2 days we were 15-20 mins. late for dinner. So we showed up early and it still took 2 hours to finish dinner. Granted we are not slow eaters. There was one night that we actually finished dinner in an hour. But as I looked around many of the tables were empty. So we started eating at the buffet for dinner instead. One night we paid $30 dollars to eat at the supper club. We were impressed at their attentiveness at first because as more patrons arrived the less attention we got. The desserts at the sit down dinner and supper club were the same desserts being served at the buffet. They really need to change their dessert menus. The sit down dinner and supper club meals were good, with sometimes weird combinations, but it might not be for you.
The airline had lost my wife’s luggage for this trip and didn’t receive it until 3 days before the end of our trip. My wife was of course upset having all her clothes and formal wear missing. Being petite in size the gift shop did not carry any undergarments in her size. Nor did they sell any bathing suits. She was able buy some work out shorts and a t-shirt. Fortunately her sister of the same body size was able to spare some of her clothes. The ship did supply toothpaste, toothbrush, floss, shampoo, and soap. They did everything they could to locate our luggage but communication between the pursers were lacking. We always got a different story when asking about our luggage.
The excursions were nice and a little rushed on some
of them. Currency can be changed on board the ship. Try to change your US
dollars for Euros the day before your excursion. It is important to attend the
informative meetings about the different excursions to help you decide.
Buy a large water bottle to take with you on excursions, then refill the bottle to save money.
Sometimes locals will increase the price on food so just beware. The customer (Tourist) is not always right here in Europe. Got charged extra in Barcelona on food we didn’t order. In Venice we got charged for 3scoops of gelato when we only got 2 scoops. Best Gelato is in Sicily, the gelato is much creamier.
Important to try to schedule your flight to
accommodate a tour in Rome. Tour excursions are offered after you receive your
itinerary. Two tours are offered on the day of embarkation last tour is
scheduled at 12pm. Tours are also offered at debarkation depending on your
flight times. Of course you can tour Rome on your own. To tour Rome it would
probably best to be there a day before embarkation or have a late flight out of
Rome on your last day.
Excursions were built to suit you from history to shopping and both. If you are in Cannes, France and like to shop, then just disembark and go on your own. Venice is another great town for shopping.
The spa on the cruise ship was of good size. Although they decided to glue the mats down during a day at sea and was unable to work out in the weight area that day. The basketball hoop and volleyball area is built over a supper club so no activities in that area after 6pm. All the bouncing could be heard in the supper club. So we were chased out from shooting basketball to find alternative activity. Wish they had built it someplace else. I was disappointed that there were no basketball tournaments/activities scheduled. Golf lessons were given in the upper deck next to a giant fan area of the deck. Golf packages were expensive but I believe the bigger the group the cheaper the golf package gets (per brother-in-law who went golfing). My brother-in-law enjoyed the greens he played in Venice and Barcelona.
Overall experience: Very clean and comfortable state rooms. Very good entertainment. Nice large casino. Nice large exercise room and spa. Very friendly crew. Buffet food good, desserts not so good (it’s a tasters choice). Too many kids running around during our cruise, may differ during your cruise. Servers during sit down and supper club dinner friendly but service was slow. Dinner meals were fine. Wish soda was free. Disappointing late night buffets. Enjoyed all excursions but hated getting ripped off by locals. Did not see or get picked-pocketed. Need sports activities for adults during days at sea.
Comparison to other cruises taken, on a scale
State room= 10
Sit down dinner meals/Supper club=7
Sit down dinner waiters attentiveness=5
Supper club waiters attentiveness=7
Late night buffet=6