Carnival LinesCarnival Miracle ReviewWestern CaribbeanChristina Cramer
Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Miracle
Sailing Date: April 2nd, 2006
Itinerary: NOT FOUND
Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival Miracle Cruise Review
Embarkation was a breeze.
Luckily, my husband and I were traveling with other family members that obtained
VIP status, so we were included in their privileges that morning. Thank
goodness, the lines looked LONG!
The balcony room (cabin 8196) was very clean and a nice size. The cabin had plenty of room to store our luggage and all the stuff we brought with us (we tend to pack heavily). We only saw our room steward once the entire 7 nights! Granted, our room was always cleaned up and our bed was always turned down each day/night when we returned from excursions, etc...but I thought the steward was there for personal service? Perhaps I miss understood.
The food was not what I expected. In my opinion, the buffet was awful. It was standard issues cafeteria food; pretty bland - nothing really stood out. Lots of choices but not very tasty. The food in the dining room was very tasty; lots of good choices on the menu but it was NEVER hot when it was delivered to the table. It wasn't cold (except for the chilled soups and ice creams) but it was ALWAYS room temp or borderline chilly. I could understand the temp issue if the food being delivered to the table was taking a excessively long time but it was quick. So, I'm not sure what the problem was. (FYI....we had the early seating and our area of the dining room was mostly empty each night - maybe 4 occupied tables total.)
The dining room staff was wonderful! Tata, Tio and Sergie made dinner an experience we all looked forward to attending. All three of those guys were so friendly, so eager to help and just fun.
The ports were okay, Grand Cayman and Cozumel are beaten up from past Hurricanes. Don't get me wrong, the water is still beautiful, locals are very friendly but the structures are seriously damaged as are the islands themselves. Belize was lots of fun. We participated in the "Lost World Canopy Tour" - it was fantastic. SO MUCH FUN; worth every penny! As for Costa Maya, we weren't able to go. The wind kicked up and the Captain deemed it unsafe to dock, so Carnival provided everyone onboard with a $25 credit, more onboard activities and took their sweet time back to Tampa (we were traveling at 20 knots but the captain decided to travel at 10 knots all the way back to Tampa). The day we were supposed to go to Costa Maya, the water was horrible. HUGE swells, maybe 8 to 10 feet. lots of people became sea sick that day. (FYI...even after we made it through the swells...the captain maintained traveling at half speed).
Onboard activities were not my style buts lots of other people appeared to have a great time. There were constant bingo games, trivia games, comedy performances, movies, teen and kids groups, sing-a-longs, etc.... The pools were very nice but very crowded. The casino was also nice (I won $250) but laid out kind of funny. It seemed very crowded on one side and not on the other. Weird!
Souvenirs and drinks were priced very fair and a good selection were on hand. There were constant sales on gold, diamonds and other gemstones. My husband bought a beautiful Tag watch for $300 less that we could of in Tampa (plus, it was duty free).
Debarkation was a joke. Since my husband and I live in Tampa we opted to do the "Self Assist" debarkation. Self Assist, I think, is a new option. If you are a US citizen, that can handle your own luggage and can stay in your group (not miss or need to wait for other party members), supposedly, you can get off the boat first and quickly - say 7:30 AM or so...well, in our case, we waited and waited and an announcement was finally made around 8:45 AM for the self assist persons (everyone must be off the boat by 9:30 AM). What a joke, because after that one announcement, they also announced "early flight" departures can debark as well.