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Age: 60


Number of Cruises: 3

Cruise Line: Carnival

Ship: Carnival Spirit

Sailing Date: 2010-09-2

Itinerary: Inside passage

There were 11 of us, all related. My husband and I and our son were the only ones who had cruised before. Overall, what we expected on our 3rd cruise. Scenery was awesome and glaciers were simply breathtaking. Shore excursions were pretty much what you paid for, pay a little, get a little. Whale watching and glacier excursions were the best/worth the money. We also did the rafting in Juneau and enjoyed that. Getting on and off the ship was very organized, we were amazed. Last 2 cruises we took getting on and off was a big hassle so we were pleasantly surprised. Transfers through CArnival went fine. Overpacked, dining was casual--dress slacks and shirt for men and slacks and nice tops for ladies. Only needed to dress up this much twice during the week. Definately dress in layers, a light coat that will keep out wind and rain is a must. One pair of walking shoes would have been enough--even rained most days. Meals were very good. We had 11 in our party and were served promptly always. One of our party was a large eater and the waiters never questioned, just brought him several entrees when he asked. Good variety of food, something for everyone at each meal. Service was very good. Buffett is kind of a mad-house but a lot of variety if you don't mind pushing through the crowd. This might be better organized. Gym was used by several in our party and they were impressed by the machines and variety, very clean. Do pose for every picture they try to take of you, we were surprised by how good they turned out and how many we DID want in the end. We decided that in the end the pictures and shore excursions were worth paying for . DId not see much wildlife but live in a midwestern state so can see a lot of wildlife here. DO get the motion-sickness patch if you have ANY tendency toward that. We did have a rough sea going out and were glad that we had taken the precaution of the patch. Rooms were with regular balcony and were very nice, clean always and nicely appointed. We had the door between our room and brother's opened so we could share the balconies. The people in our party who had room service were pleased with it. The live entertainment was Ok, seemed to be better on other cruises but am sure expense of such keeps going up. The last night the show was great. Went to the comedians, some were good, others not so much. Some tried the steak house and were very pleased with it.

Be careful going ashore and booking the excursions. Some are fine but you can get taken also. We got taken in Ketchikan on a bus tour of "bears" (never saw any) and other wildlife (never saw any). Funny thing about this was the driver had a cute old "Trolley" and he drove it about 65 mph all of the way across town, talking all of the time. He stopped at this muddy outlet that we stood on and watched for wildlife. Then he took us to the middle of a busy bridge to look for wildlife. We were glad to get back safely.

None in our party got "taken" on any excursion we booked through Carnival. Some were more expensive, but we felt probably worth it.

Did seem like there were more tips required now and the mandatory tips added to everything seem to add up quick. DId not like the added expense of having to pay for soda. There was water, coffee and juice 24-7 on several of the decks though. High five to the Carnival line for making their boarding and getting off so much better!! Even our luggage was right where it was supposed to be on time. We did not use the express luggage and did not see the need for it. However, if you are elderly or need help getting around in any way, this service would be a great benefit.

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