Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Carnival
Ship: Carnival Triumph
Sailing Date: October 9th, 2005
This was my wife and mine 15th wedding anniversary and our 1st cruise. We were scheduled to board the Triumph at 1pm on October 9th. We arrived at 11:30 am based on the recommendation of our travel agent. Norfolk is currently building a $36 million cruise ship terminal so they have temporary structures set up for passengers. We had our sail and sign cards within 20 minutes and were heading to lunch.
We had cabin 8273 which was an interior cabin. This being our first cruise we were not sure what to expect. The experience exceeded our expectations. The first full day out was a fun day at sea, and also the first formal dinner night with the Captains party. Free alcohol and snacks for 1 hour prior to dinner was very nice. Dinner was very good all nights and our waiter, Vitali was excellent giving an appetizer, salad, entree and desert recommendation each night. I had a fountain drink card and diet coke was waiting for me each night when I arrived. We wound up going back after the cruise docked and tipping him extra do to how good he was. Our dinner guest, Dan and Sandie had cruised previously and we enjoyed our dinners with them very much.
Our ports we visited were Nassau, and Freeport. Nassau was wonderful and colorful. We booked our shore excursions ourselves and saved $20.00 per person on the dolphin encounter, swim and $13.00 per person on the pirate museum.
The shows were excellent to me and the entertainment such as the hairy chest competition, new and not-so newly wed game were very funny. The ship is huge and people we knew who were on there with us, we would not see for a day at a time just due to the size.
Freeport is a bit of a bummer, industrial area at the ship dock with just a market area right there. The market area was nice but limited with tourist trinkets and souvenirs.
The casino was ok, the dealers were nice, but most of the gambling tables were set for $10 minimum bet, $5.00 would have been better. Don't play the slots, they have no minimum payback so other than $6,000.00 won the first night payouts were few and far between.
The piano bar with Eric was excellent. He plays and sings and everyone sings along. The highlight of the trip was the deck party with the band "Impulse". The are a calypso band and after their last song, we all hooted and hollered so much they played for another 30 minutes with the audience on stage dancing and joining in the singing.
Exiting the ship was a bit of a pain. We thought that by carrying our own bags we would save time. Instead we were stuck in a stair well with half the ship waiting to get off of the boat. Still it only took 20-30 minutes but Carnival needs to come up with a better system. Perhaps releasing a deck every 15 minutes or so would expedite the line. Still it wasn't too bad.
The food in all of the restaurants was good and room service was always about half the time they stated they would take. The only place I would recommend not eating at was the Hong Kong Noodle Company. Everything tasted stale or undercooked. The NY Deli was great as was the pizza deli. We are already looking forward to booking the same trip next year. Hope this helps.