1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
I have cruised on Carnival a few times before. We left out of Miami after staying at the Hilton Cabana Miami Beach, which I would not recommend. We had Faster to the Fun, which is always worth it. Got on the boat in a breeze. Rooms ... Read More
I have cruised on Carnival a few times before. We left out of Miami after staying at the Hilton Cabana Miami Beach, which I would not recommend. We had Faster to the Fun, which is always worth it. Got on the boat in a breeze. Rooms were ready around 1:30pm. I felt like the rooms were bigger than those in the past. The lights confused us - your sign and sail must be in the holder for the power and lights to work. This also caused issues with charging - when there is no card or lights, no phones, etc. are charging. Seating was limited upon arrival at the Lido deck until rooms were available, but able to grab a table and have some buffet food for lunch. Our boys got pizza. Dinner was in the dining room, where our head waiter was not the most friendly of people, but they got the job done. Paid extra for the surf and turf, which in my opinion, was not worth it. Day two - day at sea. Did the brunch in the Meridian dining room, very good. Little one had the skillet cake, older the steak and eggs, hubby the French toast, which he ordered again. All very good. Very fun, so much for the boys to do. My oldest tried to do the Sea Ride, but the wait was an hour, so he passed. The boys did the water slides, pool, all the activities like golf, soccer, ping pong, etc. Dinner was in the Italian restaurant. It was good, but not the best I’ve ever had. Lunch was with the hubby at the sushi restaurant, which I highly recommend. It was so good. Day three - Jamaica. Did the bobsled excursion. The line was very long, like at least an hour for my kids and husband before they got on the sleds. Once they did it was very fun. The changing stations were not the best, so wear your suit under your clothes. Dinner was in the main dining, decent food. Day three - Grand Cayman. Did the turtle excursion. The bus we got on was hot and overcrowded, which is not unusual for these excursions, but one family went rogue and we were stuck on the bus waiting for them forever, sweating to death. Got to the turtle place, and it was pretty cool, but the heat was pretty unbearable. Their pool and slide were amazing! Had a decent lunch in their little restaurant. Took a public bus back to avoid the hot bus again, which was quite the adventure. But we arrived faster than the tour bus, which was good. Had dinner at the Teppanyaki place, which was so good. I highly recommend if you are lucky enough to get a reservation. The service was great and so was the good! Day four - Cozumel. Due to a late excursion to Passion Island were able to have a lazy breakfast at the Meridian. Good omelette, just a bit small. The excursion was ok. It was a 40 minute boat ride to the island, but they then make you wait in line to take yet another picture (which judging by the crowd, everyone was hot and over pictures at that point and just wanted to do their own thing). You then walk over to a meeting point where they tell you all about the island while the sweat trails down your back, and then they spend several minutes talking about tipping. The water was nice, we floated in it for quite some time. The open bar is not worth it, we ended up buying a couple of drinks from the cash bar to avoid warm well liquor. The buffet was meh, most food being out, they ran out of plates, and at the end, I found a hair in my food. When it was time to go back, we literally sat in the blazing sun for 20 minutes while they talked about tipping them. Enough. It’s hot. We had dinner at Guy’s Pig and Anchor. OMG. So amazing. Hubs had the prime rib which was delicious, I had pulled pork, my oldest had the ribs. All were so good. I would have eaten there every day for lunch had I known!!! Day five - Day at sea. Pools, basketball, sportsing, all the fun. Lunch was at the taco/burrito place which was ok. Dinner was at the steakhouse, Farenheit 555, on the boat. It was amazing. The only complaint was that they told us our oldest had to wear pants (which we bought but he forgot to pack), so we spent $65 on pants for him. When we got to the restaurant there was a family there that was wearing shirts with swear words on them, sweat pants, backwards baseball hats, half shirts and jeans, I could not believe that we were told our son could not wear his nice Gap khaki shorts, but this is ok with dress code, When I brought this to the restaurant’s attention, their comment was we just require pants. When I questioned if he wore his pajama pants, would that have been ok, they stated they just require pants. At the end of the day, they took care of us and we felt fully compensated but not sure that the requirement of pants is truly the requirement. We went to some comedy shows, did some trivia (I came in 3rd place for Mean Girls trivia), had a ton of pool time. I will say, this cruise had the most people I have ever cruised with, but with the use of space on the Horizon you would never know. With the exception of the embarkation day, there were no lines for food or issues with seating. You could actually use the pools and get a chair, and there were no issues with people. The restaurant food far surpasses the dining room and was a pleasant surprise. I loved the Horizon and would go back in a heartbeat!! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We just got back today! This was a family cruise for my husband and I and our 2 kids, ages 10 and 9, and my Mom. I absolutely loved it, loved all the activities on board, found my happy place on the 2nd level shaded area by the pool (must ... Read More
We just got back today! This was a family cruise for my husband and I and our 2 kids, ages 10 and 9, and my Mom. I absolutely loved it, loved all the activities on board, found my happy place on the 2nd level shaded area by the pool (must reserve your spots early with towels) they go fast! The bingo was fun, enjoyed the comedy shows, laughed my head off at the hairy chest competition by the pool, kids had fun on all the kid friendly game area including mini golf, my son was obsessed with billiard soccer, loved the chocolate extravaganza, my mom won $80 in the casino, the excursions we went on were amazing!!! Curacao has fantastic snorkeling, La Romana had a blast zip lining into a pool at Bavarian Adventure Park, fantastic!! We had a tour guide going to Aruba’s Eagle beach that was over the top funny, entertaining and passionate about Aruba: Albert Washington! Loved the ride to the beach because of Albert! Learned so much about this happy place!! The 2 guys that kept our cabins pristine: Midhun and Liberado, thanks for all your hard work to give us the best vacation ever! We loved our cabin!! #8386, of course the food was amazing! Nobody does it like Carnival! Xo Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Wide variety of activities and plenty of room to spread out. We loved the Playlist Productions shows - especially Soulbound and Celestial Strings. Only complaint was that the comedy club was too small. We still got in to see some good ... Read More
Wide variety of activities and plenty of room to spread out. We loved the Playlist Productions shows - especially Soulbound and Celestial Strings. Only complaint was that the comedy club was too small. We still got in to see some good shows but that was the only area with large waits. Sky bike was fun. Excellent food service. We had early seating and it was fast and efficient. Some of the dishes were fantastic. All were good. Dining room breakfast service was also fast . We had our own hot buffet in the family harbor area - great for the kids and for excursion days. Staff and activities in the kids clubs were great. Jane made sure that the kids in Circle C made friends and had fun. We are used to smart elevators but many are not - some posted instructions would be helpful for those that have not used them. Many people did not understand that they had to push once for each person and then were frustrated when their group could not fit on. Unnecessary frustration. Ports - DR - we stayed on the boat as did many others. The rest of the ports were great. Aruba- nice tour and mini sub ride, Grand Turk - went to the beach next to the ship, Curacao - walked to town and shops. We always have fun on Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Our first cruise experience ever was the Carnival Fascination some 15+ years ago. We have a very nice time but with the caveat that the Carnival brand was a younger person's party cruise and we were ready for something a bit more ... Read More
Our first cruise experience ever was the Carnival Fascination some 15+ years ago. We have a very nice time but with the caveat that the Carnival brand was a younger person's party cruise and we were ready for something a bit more sophisticated. Since then, we have done multiple trips on Disney, NCL and RC. After watching a promo video on the new Carnival Horizon ship, we decided to give Carnival another try. Three days into our eight day trip and I expressed to my wife how pleasantly surprised I was at the experience. I was actually borderline impressed and that says a lot from someone like me. The food onboard was outstanding. We noticed that in comparison to our last Disney cruise experience where Disney appeared to be ratcheting down their food quality and experience, Carnival has totally upped their game. Don't get me wrong - cruise ship food is just that, cruise ship food. But on a scale of 1 - 10, Carnival's Horizon experience was a solid 9+. From their fast food stops, to their buffets to their sit-down options - we were pleased through and through. Like any company, Carnival has made choices on where to invest their dollars and where to throttle back their investment. The positives areas where they made investment: - kid's water park on top (although it should be open past the 6:00pm that is shut's down each day) - food options - dining room experiences - solid stateroom size, cleanliness and experience - great staff members - hand wash machines at key locations (albeit see below as not everyone used them) - cabin, bar and restaurant staffs were outstanding The negatives: - limited TV channels to a handful or so. On a 8 day cruise, at the very least an option should be offered to purchase an extended package of TV channels - soft drink availability options were the pits and forcing you into a woefully overpriced pre-pay package was a lousy alternative - the lack of actual chicken fingers on the boat was noticeable for parents with kids in tow. it wasn't that they were nowhere, they just were very limited in when and where you could find them - lack of staff to force hand sanitizer on people entering the buffers was noticed - so many people and presumably so many germs. It makes one feel better to know that at least everyone was being offered sanitizer as they come into the space - the "fun crew" were a bit grouchy. Don't get me wrong, they put their best face forward. From the cruise director to his staff, you could sense that they were short on patience and the repetition of what they do each week was perhaps weighing on them. With our experience on the Horizon, Carnival rose to a tie for our favorite cruise experience. While very different then Disney, and not to be thought of as like cruise experiences, Carnival more then holds its own in the cruise market on this ship. We considered the Carnival experience to be on par with our RC experience on Oasis. NCL has moved to a distant last place based on all of our experiences. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I love the deep Southern Caribbean cruises and this was a new ship of Carnivals and I wanted to give it a try and it did not let me down. Food was great, entertainment was fun and they had a lot to do for every age group. Our Suite in the ... Read More
I love the deep Southern Caribbean cruises and this was a new ship of Carnivals and I wanted to give it a try and it did not let me down. Food was great, entertainment was fun and they had a lot to do for every age group. Our Suite in the Havana was so nice our own private patio with a swing chair was so nice. We had a 2 sink bathroom with a walk in shower with a built in seat and a rain shower head. Loved it there were 4 of us to this room and we all had plenty so space to sleep and 2 TV so there was no fighting over the channel changer but who cares we were outside so much. The bike ride was scary and fun glad I did it and the skies were so much fun. The service to me was a 10 because the restaurant service team foe my anytime dinning always made sure I was at the same table because I wanted to keep the same people to serve use because they were so good to my family. They joked with us they took pictures with us and genuine care that they were happy to see us every night as we were to see them. They work very hard on these cruise ships. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Our fabulous 8-day cruise to the “Exotic Southern Caribbean” aboard the Carnival Horizon was filled with plenty of positives and very few negatives. My wife and I wondered if the negative reviews were actually describing another ship. ... Read More
Our fabulous 8-day cruise to the “Exotic Southern Caribbean” aboard the Carnival Horizon was filled with plenty of positives and very few negatives. My wife and I wondered if the negative reviews were actually describing another ship. Tastes, preferences, and interests are unique to each cruiser, so I offer a bit of caution when you read those negative reviews about the Carnival Horizon. We sailed from Miami on May 18 and returned on May 26 after visiting Grand Turk, Dominica, Curacao, and Aruba. Boarding was a little delayed due to the previous cruise arriving late, but once we started moving, everything went very smoothly. We were settled in for a delicious BBQ lunch at the Pig and Anchor by 1:00. Sail away was at 4:00. A brief note about each port: On Grand Turk we simply enjoyed relaxing on the beach. Umbrellas and chairs are free in rows three and four. Margaritaville has a very nice pool with free access just steps away from the beach. We spent a relaxing day without spending any money! On Dominica we paid for an excursion to Monkeyland. If you read any negative reviews about this, I doubt the reviewer really went there. It was super fun to have the monkeys jump onto you for the food which was given to us. This was a thoroughly enjoyable experience! The ride to the monkeys aboard a comfortable bus gave us a glimpse of life on the island. On Curacao we strolled around the city enjoying the Dutch architecture, and we placed a padlock on the Lovelock Sculpture. This is a fun thing to do. Remember to bring a padlock. We did a little gambling, but didn’t win anything. We didn’t lose much, either. We didn’t leave port until 10 PM, so we got a glimpse of the lights at night. We didn’t stroll far enough from the dock to get a really good view, however. On Aruba we took the second of our two excursions. We took a comfortable bus tour of the top ten sites on Aruba. This was very enjoyable. Be sure to heed the guide’s warning about which stops have fee restrooms and which are free. We got back to the port in plenty of time to do some shopping in the area. Right outside the restricted port area you will find a local market. There are actually two “markets.” You need to cross the busy street to get to the one which appears to be more “local” and is in a big tent. I imagine many of the products are made in China but it still fun to browse in the market and talk to the local people. Now the “highlights” and “lowlights.” In no particular order: There was plenty of seating, everywhere, despite having almost 5,000 people onboard. There were only 500 children, so that may have made a difference. Single deck chairs were always available. If you needed a lot of chairs in a row they were not always available. My favorite place to sit was the Lani. Lounge chairs were always available there. My wife preferred a chair in the sun near a pool. She almost always found her chair waiting for her. Seating for shows was not as difficult as I expected. We always arrived a half hour before show time, but we would not have had to. The food in the dining room was almost always very good. I know you read otherwise, but unless you are a foodie, you will be happy. The food on the buffet was good and you have many options. Sometimes the dining room food is served on the buffet. At lunch there is a special row of fancy iced cakes. If you try a few pieces at each lunch, you will discover your favorite, but they do change every day. In the regular dessert section of the buffet they sometimes have amaretto cake which is excellent. Try it with some of the free ice-cream or gelato, which is available 24 hours a day. My very favorite dessert was the 7-layer cake served only during Sea Day Brunch. I liked that better than their signature melting chocolate cake served the dining room. Pizza is available 24 hours a day. It’s good. Guy’s Burgers are fantastic. They are free and there are several variations. Food in Ji Ji’s Asian Kitchen is outstanding. It is a specialty restaurant so you have to pay $15 for it. At noon there is a free version of the great food. It is called the Mongolian Wok at lunch. The bed and bedding were very comfortable. We were able to disembark at each port, quickly. Lemonade is always free and always available. It does not taste free! We really liked it. The Carnival Hub App is free and a must-have. It tells you what’s happening, which food places are open, and many other useful things. For $5 you can add a chat feature so you can text with your cruise mates for the whole cruise. My wife and I found it very helpful. The pastrami sandwich in the deli is delicious, and huge! There is free room service until late night. We just used it for coffee in the morning. The staff was very friendly, helpful, and kind. Once exception is noted below. Everything is squeaky clean and they are always cleaning and tidying up. The Fresh Creations salad bar on the Serenity Deck allows you to make a salad with dozens of ingredients. You can even load up on shrimp! I hesitate mentioning the few negatives because the positives far outweigh them. Our wait staff was not very attentive to our needs and the main waiter forgot things. When we asked for lemon or coffee he said he would bring it, but didn’t. He even forgot one of my main dishes. We heard it was advantageous to provide an extra tip at the beginning of the cruise. We won’t do that again. The people in the casino were not helpful and the lady in the cage was rude to me. I was told to “settle down” in a condescending tone. The free popcorn during movies on the deck was not very good. We didn’t try the popcorn for purchase in the theater. Although it was not Carnival’s fault, sometimes inconsiderate people sat next to me during the shows. One woman sang along when it wasn’t a sing-along! She did stop when I asked her to, however. These few negatives will not prevent us from sailing on a Carnival ship in the future. We loved our Carnival Horizon adventure. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Horizon was great! Our handicap room, 10205, was excellent. The room was very large, and I could use the scooter everywhere. Even though it is listed as an interior room, the room has an slightly obstructive ocean view size window, and a ... Read More
Horizon was great! Our handicap room, 10205, was excellent. The room was very large, and I could use the scooter everywhere. Even though it is listed as an interior room, the room has an slightly obstructive ocean view size window, and a great view. All the staff were fantastic when dealing with handicap people... from the people helping to board, to the time we left! I was thrilled about that, as I had concerns before the cruise. The only MAJOR problem on the cruise was all the smoke in the casino!! People were having to leave the area allot just to get a breath of fresh air! I had a bad cough after 3 days, and it took me over a week and a half after the cruise to clear up. Other than that, great cruise! The food in the buffet was just okay, definitely not allot of write home about. The specialty restaurants were great!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This was the first cruise for our family of 5 (kids ages 12, 9, and 6), but I can tell that it won't be our last! When I booked this cruise, it was chosen based on dates that worked with our spring break, the availability of ... Read More
This was the first cruise for our family of 5 (kids ages 12, 9, and 6), but I can tell that it won't be our last! When I booked this cruise, it was chosen based on dates that worked with our spring break, the availability of adjoining cabins in our price range, and the ship having many fun activities for kids. After reading many positive and negative reviews, I knew what to expect in terms of crowds, elevators, food options, and entertainment, so I felt prepared for issues that others have complained about and they didn't bother us. Yes, there were times when the ship felt crowded at the pool and the buffet, but it was never unmanageable, and it was expected when there were nearly 5000 people on board! There were always places to go to find some peace and quiet (the deck on level 5 was a favorite of ours). Yes, the elevators were a disaster on the day of embarkation due to people not knowing how to use them and the crew working hard to get everyone's luggage onboard. But we walked a lot of stairs over the 6 days and burned off the many servings of burgers and melting cake that we consumed :). We had 2 adjoining interior cabins forward on deck 1 and this was perfect for our family-the 3 kids slept in 1 while my husband and I had our own space in the other. I'm sure a balcony or window would have been nice, but we spent very little time in the cabin and did not miss them or feel claustrophobic. There was plenty of closet and drawer space for our family. It was great to have 2 bathrooms! We felt very little movement from the ship, and only heard noise on the final day when we docked back in Miami. Our kids ate about a hundred servings of ice cream and thought this was a dream come true! We took them to the main dining room every night-it was nice to take the time to relax during dinner, and it was a great time for them to try out new foods. My son loved the alligator fritters and calamari, and my older daughter ate meat for every meal-lamb shank, prime rib, braised short ribs! My 6yo daughter was happy eating hot dogs and hamburgers for almost every meal (ugh!), but the dining room staff was very nice about getting her raw veggies and fruit to accompany her meal. The food was overall very good-we don't eat in gourmet restaurants often, but had no complaints about the quality of the food, especially considering how many people they are cooking for! The melting cake was terrific the first night, but not as warm and "melting" on other nights, to the point where we sent it back one night, as we found it just isn't very good when it is cold. We promptly received a new melting cake without any questions asked. The crew were all exceptionally friendly and I felt like everyone we saw smiled or said hello, fellow passengers included. The activities on board did not disappoint-the water slides were fun for all of us, the ropes course was terrifying in a good way (I would recommend NOT doing this in 45mph winds unless you have no fear of heights :), the sky ride was amazing, and the mini golf course was great family fun. The pools and hot tubs were crowded with kids on sea days, but some of them were our own (and they didn't care!). My girls checked out club Ocean briefly the first day and were overwhelmed by the number of kids, so did not want to go back. This was no surprise, as all of our kids are somewhat shy and I didn't expect that they would do the kids clubs. We heard from others that their kids liked it so much that they didn't want to leave! We attended the 3 shows-Soulbound, Celestial Strings, and Vintage Pop- and thought these were fun, well done with excellent musicians, singers, and dancing- and perfect length for our family (around 35-40 min each I think). We planned our own activities in port and this worked well for our family and was more cost effective than purchasing through Carnival. I hope this review helps someone else who is thinking about a cruise on the Horizon. If you have a family with kids who are tweens or grade schoolers, I can tell you that you will have an amazing time! My kids are already bugging me to plan our next cruise... Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
Just returned from a 6 Day Western Caribbean on the Horizon. Everthing from the ship to the service was top shelf. Not a fault of Carnival, the Port of Miami is a mess. There is no communication of closed parking lots and updates. We had ... Read More
Just returned from a 6 Day Western Caribbean on the Horizon. Everthing from the ship to the service was top shelf. Not a fault of Carnival, the Port of Miami is a mess. There is no communication of closed parking lots and updates. We had to park at Garage G for our ship which was close to 1/2 mile away. Could not find a shuttle to the terminal so we walked. Glad the luggage had wheels. The path was not direct and not pedestrian friendly. Embarkation was easy and the rest of the cruise was wonderful. Stateroom clean, food delicious and the staff was friendly and out going. Only negative of the ship was the smoke in the casino coming out into adjoining public areas of the ship. Not much Carnival could do so we avoided the areas. Waterworks was fun for all. Did not do the specialty dining and we thought the MDR was 5 stars. Debarkation was ok with some snags in the line once in the terminal but we survived!!! Cannot wait for our next trip..... Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Everything was perfect! We loved this boat. Our Stewart Ian was fantastic. We stayed on the Havana deck (5). It was so nice we never explored the rest of the boat! It was so worth the extra money. Carnival has changed the way they ... Read More
Everything was perfect! We loved this boat. Our Stewart Ian was fantastic. We stayed on the Havana deck (5). It was so nice we never explored the rest of the boat! It was so worth the extra money. Carnival has changed the way they clean the your state room. If used to be twice a day, now it is only once. Your Stewart will ask which do you prefer morning or evening. The downside was not having fresh towels for that second shower of the day. It wasn’t that big of deal. If I had to pick one thing I wished it was done differently it would be the siding doors had a key pad or an exit to go directly to the pool. As it is now you have to lock your sliding door from the inside and walk through the bar to get to the pool if you want your room locked. It wasn’t a well thought out plan in my opinion. Other than that we had a wonderful time and we would do it again! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We went on this cruise because it fit our schedule. The ship is Awesome! We had a boarding time of 12:30 and we arrived early. We were on the ship by 11:30. The food was really good. The ship has it all and the staff was the best we have ... Read More
We went on this cruise because it fit our schedule. The ship is Awesome! We had a boarding time of 12:30 and we arrived early. We were on the ship by 11:30. The food was really good. The ship has it all and the staff was the best we have ever had. The elevators were the only challenge we had all week. It seems like Carnival has started to figure things out. Pictures were easy to see and hassle free. The production shows were completely different and diverse. Plenty of live music around the ship. The sky ride and sports complex were really nice. The lines were really long for the sky ride. It was usually over an hour wait. The ship never felt crowded after the first day. We had an ocean view deluxe room. It was the largest room we have had on a ship. 2 bathrooms! I would definitely go on this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
My son picked this cruise and i did enjoy the islands, but most of all i enjoyed the weather, everyone seemed to experience snow and cold before hand. Getting onboard was amazing, we just walked on and were have lunch in like 5 minutes. ... Read More
My son picked this cruise and i did enjoy the islands, but most of all i enjoyed the weather, everyone seemed to experience snow and cold before hand. Getting onboard was amazing, we just walked on and were have lunch in like 5 minutes. The elevators worked fine if you followed the protocol of one click per person in your group, but many people would just join in our car and then when the door opened up on another floor already full, those people got mad, this especially happened on port days, so folks, follow the rules. We really do love kidding the staff they all made us laugh. Chairs were forever saved by a towel or shoe for hours with no one in them , to those people, i think you are rude and only thinking of your self. We laughed when the very strong accented captain came over the loud speakers for the daily update what he said was: this is the captain speaking from the navigational deck, what it really sounded like was: this is the captain speaking from the irrigation ditch, haaahaaa we always laughed at that one. Favorite port was curacio, wish we could have stayed a day more. There wasn't much for the 13 year old to do, so that needs to be worked on. How to entertain kids that are too old for camps and bashful. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Everyone was wonderfully friendly. As a first-time cruiser I really didn't know what to expect and was open to anything. We were a party of 5, (mom, dad, 2 kids ages 7 and almost 3 and Nana in tow). All first-timers! The food was ... Read More
Everyone was wonderfully friendly. As a first-time cruiser I really didn't know what to expect and was open to anything. We were a party of 5, (mom, dad, 2 kids ages 7 and almost 3 and Nana in tow). All first-timers! The food was very good and plentiful with many choices. For breakfast Lido marketplace was the place to be; omelettes, Eggs Benedict, scrambled eggs, ham, sausage, bacon. Anything you could think of - cereals, fruit, danishes it was all there, and I sure do miss it!! Their midnight buffet had three selections, my favorite being the grilled ham and cheese sandwiches . They were awesome for late-night munching. If you're looking for BBQ the Pig and Anchor is YUMMY, go on "at sea" day for lunch at no cost. One thing, the beverage pack doesn't seem cost effective and if you're a Pepsi person you might do better bringing your own. So much entertainment and found many things of interest but always seemed to gravitate towards Lido deck aft to meet new friends, chat and laugh. Very kid friendly- waterworks, build a bear and Camp Ocean was great for them while we adults took a little time for ourselves. Shore excursions we booked lived up to expectations except one. My Sea Trek excursion was cancelled last sec, literally, because of compressor malfunction. But better still on dry land instead of underwater at the time. This is the only reason I gave 3 stars for excursions. Was offered any remaining excursions for 35% off which was appreciated but sadly I panic trying to snorkel. Overall the GREATEST vacation I've ever had!! Bucket list- Cruise Caribbean check! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our 5th Carnival cruise, and our third to the Southern Caribbean in January. We choose this itinerary because the weather is always 80 degrees or above in this part of the world during this month, so "Fun In The Sun" is ... Read More
This was our 5th Carnival cruise, and our third to the Southern Caribbean in January. We choose this itinerary because the weather is always 80 degrees or above in this part of the world during this month, so "Fun In The Sun" is guaranteed regardless of where you are coming from! Now to the ship. The Horizon is beautiful and well thought out in its design. The transformation of the LIDO deck buffet from the single line concept, to multiple serving areas made for less congestion, and quicker service. My family and I were able to walk up, grab a plate and our food, and immediately sit down for a meal. BRAVO Carnival! We also found plenty of seating available, which made for short meal times allowing us to get back to the fun! The staff in the LIDO buffet were excellent by greeting everyone, clearing tables quickly and even walking around offering to gather more drinks, or desserts. I also enjoyed the speciality restaurants, including Bonsai Sushi and Pig & Anchor. Both are excellent with the full Pig & Anchor restaurant on board offering those amazing Greens and Barbeque at anytime a plus. You can also eat for free on Sea Days for lunch. Normally, my family and I are not MDR folks, because we travel for work often, and are not looking to sit down in a restaurant for a meal for a long period of time. The Horizon is the exception. We had breakfast several times, being served by the wonderful Harlene and Tomina, and used the Carnival app. to reserve a table for dinner, where I had the grilled lobster, which melted in my mouth. Including Pizza, Guy's Burger, Blue Iguana, and other food locations, Carnival provides a meal option for all cruisers on board. The cabins are also one of the reasons why I sail Carnival. If available, I would definitely book a Havana suite. But, I have a beautiful five year old daughter who comes along, so I have to go with another option. Must be 12 years or older to book a Havana room. Here's a tip, the hot tubs and pool in the Havana are open to everyone after 7 pm, so head on down for a virtually private bar, romantic getaway, or family fun time. Carnival handles other customers by offering Family Harbor Suites with a private fun area, and other excellent options. I could afford a balcony, suite, etc., but being the cost conscience guy I am, I always book us in a QUIET, Deluxe Ocean View Suite, located forward of the ship. Why? It has two bathrooms with one being a full , and the other a half. If you are a husband with a wife or daughter, no need to further explain why this is important. Secondly, the square footage of these rooms is 230 square feet, with none of that space being used by a balcony. A definite plus for us. Being a regular cruiser, I am also aware the Family Harbor suites are near the Aft of the ship, and below the galley. It can be very noisy so be careful in where you book here! Our room was clean, comfortable, and our Steward Suli was excellent. There when you needed him, and disappeared leaving you to enjoy your cruise at other times. Entertainment wise, Carnival has it all. We normally don't go to the shows, but speaking to other passengers these were excellent. The Southern Caribbean itinerary is one of the best at sea, which includes Grand Turk, La Romana, Curacao, and Aruba. Don't be afraid to explore La Romana, we hired a driver for $25 per person and explored the entire city. Just be prepared to say NO to some aggressive vendors along the way. The other ports are quiet, beautiful, and can be enjoyed by walking if you choose. Both embarking and disembarkation were painless and efficient. We always leave our rental car at the Miami International Airport, check in at the Carnival Kiosks located near the baggage claim areas, then the entire family rides in a taxi to the port for a flat fee of $27. Yes, I said $27! Compare this to taking the carnival shuttle, or other travel options where you have to wait for the bus, ride with a larger group, etc. $27 is the authorized fee for taxi service to the port in Miami, and being Florida residents, by driving down in a rental and picking one up at the airport after the cruise, we save a ton of money on both travel costs and parking. Also, by checking in at the Kiosk, you are allowed to go directly to the Security Line at the port and walk right onto the ship during your assigned time. No need to pay for Faster to the Fun and and no waiting in lines at the port! We still travel to Miami and spend the night before our cruise in a hotel to avoid any last minute hick-ups. Highly recommend Carnival, and enjoy your cruise with them! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Hello I decided that the new carnival ship Horizon would be a great adventure for my grandaughters and I We were impressed with all aspects of the ship. Service was wonderful and all staff we so pleasant and helpful. So many ... Read More
Hello I decided that the new carnival ship Horizon would be a great adventure for my grandaughters and I We were impressed with all aspects of the ship. Service was wonderful and all staff we so pleasant and helpful. So many activities to chose from! We utilized the hub app to plan our days and to make dinning room reservations. We never waited more than 10 minutes for a table. The new elevator worked efficiently and easily. The grandchildren love the sky ride. I enjoyed the piano bar with lady Red. There was red flag waves in cozumel which led to our excursion being cancelled. It was quick easy to book another excursion for the day. River tubing in Jamaica was a great adventure.Grand Cayman was such a safe and easy to navigate port that we spent the day shopping and walking. The cruise director was amazing as were the all ages music events each evening Truly it was the fun ship Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This was my kids first time cruising and they loved it. We all had so much to do and the food was excellent. The meridian restaurant was awesome with at least three nights we had prime rib and lobster tails. We stayed in the family harbor ... Read More
This was my kids first time cruising and they loved it. We all had so much to do and the food was excellent. The meridian restaurant was awesome with at least three nights we had prime rib and lobster tails. We stayed in the family harbor lounge and had late night snacks available and a ps3 which my hubby and kids loved. I hardly heard any noise but we also cruised at a time most kids are in school which was nice. The only issue we had was due to no fault of carnival the water was choppy and we had to get off at a further port in grand Cayman but we still made it to the beach on the local bus and enjoyed. We didnt do any excursions and really you dont need to unless you like a packed itinerary or want to do more than get a tan. The cruise director was energetic and fun. Overall great time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My daughter and I booked this cruise while the Horizon was still under construction. We booked a balcony cabin on Deck 9. The views from our balcony was great. Our cabin had a mini frig and sufficient closet and storage space for our ... Read More
My daughter and I booked this cruise while the Horizon was still under construction. We booked a balcony cabin on Deck 9. The views from our balcony was great. Our cabin had a mini frig and sufficient closet and storage space for our things. Beds and pillows were very comfortable. Our cabin steward was great. We ate most of our evening meals in the MDR. Had lunch at the Pig & Anchor the first day on board. This was a disappointment! The meats, although very tasty, were dry. Also had lunch at Guy's Burgers, which were very good. Had dinner one evening a the Italian restaurant and the meal was superb (I had the short rib meal). Our last night on board we had dinner at the steakhouse which was excellent! The entertainment on board was very good. We enjoyed the shows in the Liquid Lounge. The boarding process took us only 15 minutes. Debarkation was 38 minutes from start to finish through Customs. The ship is very spacious and kept very clean. I would cruise on this ship again without hesitation. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Holy cow this was so much fun!!! I have never been on a cruise before and went with my entire family. I have 7 siblings and we were joined by my parents, brother in law, and his parents. Everyone had time to do whatever they wanted onboard ... Read More
Holy cow this was so much fun!!! I have never been on a cruise before and went with my entire family. I have 7 siblings and we were joined by my parents, brother in law, and his parents. Everyone had time to do whatever they wanted onboard and also had a great time off board. Even with minor issues (and earthquake at Grand Cayman) the entire staff and our cruise director, Mike, made sure everything ran smoothly. The entire cruise staff was genuine and so helpful. Huge compliments to our waiters in the reflections restaurant Iketut and Ikadek, as well as our housekeeper, Widiarta. Everyone remembered ALL of our names which was a feat in itself. And as mentioned in my title, the carnival quest. This was the best way to spend one of the nights on board. For adults only, but if you like competition and a high energy event this is for you. The only recommendation I have is to make it earlier in the week. It really makes you work as a team and make friends so I feel like this would be a good event for the second night! Regardless, this cruise was fantastic. Definitely will be going again. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We loved this ship! Was the largest we have sailed. Nice layout, never felt crowded, clean pretty decor. Staff was great, room stewards attentive, wait staff in MDR were excellent! Ate at steakhouse twice and Chefs table, all were great! ... Read More
We loved this ship! Was the largest we have sailed. Nice layout, never felt crowded, clean pretty decor. Staff was great, room stewards attentive, wait staff in MDR were excellent! Ate at steakhouse twice and Chefs table, all were great! Dive in movies fun. MDR was also great for dinner, breakfast, and brunch. Don’t remember any shows. Loved sea day tea too. Had an ocean suite on this cruise. Great room, spacious and comfy. Would sail on this ship again, was my fave of Carnival ships so far. My husband missed the grand atrium feel on older ships. Played in th water park, enjoyed playing scrabble in the library. Cruise director Mike was great fun! When getting on and off at ports we never felt crowded, we never seemed to stand in long lines when boarding. This was a December cruise and they had nice Christmas decorations up, very festive. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Either Carnival was totally on point for the Thanksgiving week or all of those complainers are people that would cry about anything. This cruise was fantastic. Our family cruises for Thanksgiving and the last couple of times have been on ... Read More
Either Carnival was totally on point for the Thanksgiving week or all of those complainers are people that would cry about anything. This cruise was fantastic. Our family cruises for Thanksgiving and the last couple of times have been on the Oasis Royal class boats so this was our first time back to Carnival after several years and we selected it based on the ports it went to. Embarkation – we got an email days prior saying that they are expecting a delay in the debarkation so arrive an hour later than your scheduled time. We flew in that morning and did you know there was a check in at the airport?? USE IT! We did that and they did not say there was a delay so we went on to the port. There are two entrances to the ship – one for airport check in and one for regular check in. We walked right on through with no stopping. Highly recommend it! Security didn’t go through our bags, didn’t check to see our wine bottle was intact, and didn’t check to see that it was really pop cans in the bag. They did have the hallway doors to the rooms closed so you couldn’t access that until 1:30 which was fine. Food – It’s funny we did a carnival one year that was great food, and then the next year it wasn’t. The next was Royal Caribbean and amazing food and then the next year RC was bad. This year on the Horizon we were completely surprised at how good everything was. The food options were plentiful and because I wanted to try everything once I didn’t get to go back and try anything twice! I opted for the tacos at Blue Iguana for the first day and they were great with the salsa bar and accoutrements you could add to it. My family went to the Lido and complained at the limited options there. I had read Carnival was doing that and spreading the food options out across the boat. I never ate at the buffet other than for breakfast with the other amazing options out there. The Guys Hamburgers were great as well and even with lines it moved fast as they were cooking hamburgers constantly. You could add any additions, sautéed onions, mushrooms, sauces etc. The Italian place on 11 was free for sea days as well as the Mongolian Wok. You have an order sheet and check what you want. GREAT food. The BBQ was free on sea as well as lunch and the beef tips and pulled port were very tasty. For breakfast you had breakfast tacos or burritos from the Iguana – full of flavor. I did eat the lido here but it was very limited to straight breakfast foods. Eggs, bacon, sausage, pancakes, French toast, made to order omelets always had a line and cereals, toasts etc. Other cruise lines have included food for international passengers so thought that was unusual. Our dining room service was outstanding; food was always great, always hot. And quicker than on past cruises. We had the old fashion 6:00 dining and we just walked in to our table and our waiter Inyoman got to know us. Super friendly, attentive and great. I’m telling you we had no complaints in this section! We did do the Steakhouse on the first night – the special is a free bottle of wine with dinner on the first night. Everything there was outstanding. Bars – service was great at the bars and we found each bar had different menus. Although you could get standard drinks at any of them. The piano bar, the Alchemy and the pig and anchor had some of the coolest and strongest drinks. Most times there was only a small wait. The bar on the 5th floor Ocean plaza was always empty and you could walk right up and get something there. The serenity bar was usually pretty empty as well. The three pool bars were the busiest but they really do a great job at getting you served. We had the cheers package and you could get 1 alcohol drink and one non like a cocktail and a bottle of water but you couldn’t get two nons like a soda and water which was silly. You had to wait 5 minutes in between ordering. Entertainment – if I had to downgrade them at all it would have been here a little bit. The nightly shows have some great people singing and dancing but every night the show was pretty much the same – just singing and dancing. There wasn’t any variety other than the theme of their outfits. On Royal we had a cirque like show, a water show with divers, an ice-capade show and a full on Broadway production. People complained about the Liquid Lounge and the limited seating and viewing. They do have some poles in there but we didn’t ever have a problem seeing from our choices. We always sat downstairs. One night they had a “magic variety” show and that guy was almost funnier than the comedians! The live music on the boat was a big plus. I loved the electric violins. They played around dinner time in the atrium area so we could catch them coming to and from our dining. On Friday night they were in the nightly show and they were the hit (Celestial Strings). The comedians were pretty good – the PG show at 5:30 was plenty open but the night over 18 shows were packed – get in line early. Some of them were funny and some were just filled with F-bombs. Some of the PG version of the same artist were better than their adult version with cuss words. I have heard the Quest is the fun game but it’s late at 11:30 and after sun and drinks and a full day I couldn’t stay up that late so missed it. The piano bar at 10:00 with the sing along songs were fun. She is crazy talented with being able to sing all of those songs, talk and play and witty as well. Don’t be a Kanga-BOO! When you walk out of her show.  They had dance parties on the lido deck which were a big hit with the gangs of kids and the adults alike. Some nights they had dive in movies (rental box movies – not first run) and could lay on a lounge chair with a blanket and popcorn - very cool! We didn’t check out the pay for IMAX movies. You could stay as busy as you wanted to on this boat . The pools – very small. Very crowded. The main center pool was crazy loud and party atmosphere. The back area had a small pool with two hot tubs. By the end of the 8 days the pool was very cloudy and really kind of gross looking. I like how there were stools and places to sit around the pool and in the pool and keep your feet in it. Hot tubs were always butts to nuts – I didn’t try. We didn’t really go into the Havana area other than one night for drinks and to hear the music and see the back end. We thought about getting those rooms but I didn’t like not having my balcony private and right up to the window to see the ocean. Ship – it was beautiful. Well laid out – A LOT of areas to sit and relax in comfortable areas. The 5th floor had great seating with table/chairs or living room arrangements all around the boat. The clamshells in the serenity area were the best for napping in. You could walk out on the front of the boat on most decks and that is a neat view. (just walk down the cabin hallways to the doors at the front) So many areas to get away from the crowds and enjoy the breeze. Gone are the glitzy gaudy colors and splashes. Very modern and pretty. The casino is pretty small and definitely horribly smoky. We love to gamble and it ran us out of there many times. Seemed like the slots were flowing pretty good and we all did great at the black jack table. Had it not been gross in there we might have stayed and gave the winnings back. ha! I LOVED their hand washing stations in the Buffet area – they were like mini spas. Unfortunately I didn’t see many people using them. You gotta embrace the slow herd mentality. People just moseying along and stopping randomly. (this is hard for me). Oh, and people, have some class and clean up after yourself. We saw a chocolate ice cream cone on the carpet in the hallway. Seriously? The elevators - this was a big topic. Nowhere does it say click how many people are going to what floor. I assumed you would select that floor 7 times and then it told you which elevator to go to each time you selected the floor. I take the stairs every time and would beat my family every time - even when I had to go up 7 flights. They were slow. But I like the concept. People just don't get it though and the elevator thinks it's picking up 1 person and 6 get on. The big sky bike was shut down our entire week as well. That’s pretty crappy as it’s a big attraction for them and seems like it’s been broke more times! We did do the ropes course and that was a pretty cool design. There was a basketball court and on this ship my 14 year old could use it. Past cruises it’s been monopolized by adults. Putt putt, corn hole, ping pong, foos ball, pool tables all out in this area – great family hang area. Debarkation – we walked off the boat with our bags for an early flight. Very Easy and no lines. It was a wonderful cruise for my family of 7 (from ages 75 -14) and we all had a great time. No major complaints. I can’t imagine how all those negative reviews of this boat could happen. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
This is yet another Thanksgiving Cruise we've taken and it's nice to see how the crew will decorate for the holiday. We were 2 adults and two children under 10 in an inside cabin. We traveled with family in a balcony cabin. ... Read More
This is yet another Thanksgiving Cruise we've taken and it's nice to see how the crew will decorate for the holiday. We were 2 adults and two children under 10 in an inside cabin. We traveled with family in a balcony cabin. I'm probably used to inside cabins but aside from the balcony, the usable interior space found in the balcony seemed quite comparable. We flew in the night before and stayed at a local FLL hotel before taking our pre-arranged shuttle to PortMiami. We received an email from Carnival saying that boarding would be delayed by an hour and not to arrive until then. I did switch out my shuttle reservation for the later time but they called that morning saying there were a lot of delays from others and that if we wanted to leave a half hour earlier than the new time I chose, we could. We took them up on it since they were saying it could further delay if we waited. We got to the port just after the time that was originally selected on the Carnival.com site during online check in. Check in was a breeze and so was security. We sat around waiting for our number to be called for about 15 minutes and were finally onboard just after 12pm. We signed up for communication package through the Carnival Hub App for $5 pp. On iPhone, you need to keep it open in the background in order to receive the text message through the app. A battery drain for those that use iPhone. We had a great steward Mauricio. He was able to sneak in and out of the room to tidy up during some short stints out of the cabin. I found it odd that the towel animals were done during the morning cabin tidy rather than the turn down service. The Your Time Dining option was really poorly run. Someone from your party will need to go to Deck 5 JavaBlue Cafe in order to let them know you were ready for dinner and then go down to deck 3 to be seated. No one mentioned that you can do it in the app until after we switched to a 5:30pm dining time. That's all we really wanted to begin with. We were then lucky enough to be waited on my Olimpiu from Romania. The nicest guy you will meet and full of great stories and experiences. His whole Team was quite helpful and had enough attentiveness to feel like you weren't neglected or waiting too long for anything. Even repeat entrees or replacement entrees were brought up quickly. Food tasted great and at the right temperature. I wish they had more Indian food to offer. There was one vegetarian option that stayed all week in the MDR but absolutely NOTHING in the buffet at all. Generally, lunch in the Lido buffet was the disappointment. There was one section of the buffet open and in each of the four corners was the same 7 or 8 items. On other lines I've sailed, the lunch buffet would have a number of different cuisines and variety for each. The alternative was to eat at the pasta bar, Mongolian wok, Guy's burger, Pig and Anchor. I know, I know... the horror of eating at those places. But it would be nice not to have to wait for a table at the first two, or in a line for the last two. Pig & Anchor didn't disappoint on sea day lunches. A little fatty with the brisket but so tasty. Guy's burgers was/is my favorite and I was looking forward to them as soon as I booked the cruise. Pizza was great!! Enough said. Desserts could have been better. Ice cream was plentiful so that filled the gap. Guest Services would take folks standing in the Platinum Diamond line first but when they realized the people were not either status, or, they were standing beside a friend that was that status, they continued to serve them. Another cruise where the Sky Ride wasn't working. Apparently there was a short period of time where there were two workers in there looking at the bikes. Though it still wasn't fixed for our sailing. Apparently, it was probably a better use of your time to just go to the gym rather than wait in line for the Sky Ride. They did have Sky Fitness for some basic elliptical, hip, walker, pull ups, abs and triceps exercises. I thought it was better than even going to the gym since when can you say you were working out on the deck sailing on the seas. My kids who were in the penguin and sting ray groups seemed to have enjoyed themselves the 3 or 4 times they did go to Camp Ocean. I can't comment much beyond that. Ports of call in order: Grand Turk, La Romana, Curacao, Aruba. We did not take any ship sponsored excursions. The first two were new for us and the last two were return trips from a cruise 17 years earlier. I go into these ports oblivious to what to expect. Grand Turk was great. We are not beach people but still stayed on the island for 2-3 hours and had fun swimming by the beach as well as in the large, expansive pool in the back. La Romana was more of a walk around and back to the ship. We took an open air bus ride around Curacao for $20/adult. We got into Curacao after 1:30pm and by the time the tour dropped folks off at the beach, it was closer to dusk. We went back to town and walked along the Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge at night and there were nice lights to look at as well as a tall Christmas tree at the other end as well. We took a similar tour as Curacao in Aruba but in an AC van. Great driver and tour of the area. Apparently Eagle beach is the place to go for all you beach lovers. Entertainment times were odd. There were many shows that only ran once an evening. So if you missed it, that was it. No 7:30pm or 9:30pm showings. Comedy in the Limelight was great. We had two comics leave mid cruise and replaced with two others which weren't as great. Disembarkation We had an early flight out of MIA. 11am. So we did the Express Disembarkation program they offered. This has been far and away the most efficient and well run disembark I have ever had in 20 cruises. We were told to meet in Liquid Lounge by 7am. By the time we were there a few minutes after 7, they were already calling decks to leave at the starboard side entrance to disembark the ship. They have a Global Entry line in the terminal but if you're off that early, it seemed that the regular line was SLIGHTLY quicker since there were more officers vs the 1 Global Entry officer. This line works for those that carry Nexus as well. Random observations The ship seemed "older" than it really was. There were some stalls in the restrooms that you would need to pull extremely hard in order to close. Then you feel like you can't get out afterwards. This is the men's room near the Blue Iguana. There was no push to sanitize your hands before entering the buffet or MDRs. I like the fact that they're not announcing that bingo is about to start each and every day. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Cabin was clean and bright, balcony was nice. Crew was outstanding and the food was excellent everywhere we went, especially the Steak House. The Steak House was outstanding! It was not only a visually delight but extremely delicious as ... Read More
Cabin was clean and bright, balcony was nice. Crew was outstanding and the food was excellent everywhere we went, especially the Steak House. The Steak House was outstanding! It was not only a visually delight but extremely delicious as well! The entertainment was good. The number of different shows was limited but what there was available was entertaining. The Casino was not well ventilated for those with asthma as many of the smokers congregrate at the bar and puff away for hours on end without playing in the casino. Bingo was held in the largest theatre room on the ship which allowed for many to join in keeping the cost down and the rewards up. The ship was easy to navigate and the Trivia games were newer and enjoyable. This is definitely a cruise that we will take again and hopefully with our grandchildren. Excellent value for the cost of the cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
We have been busy doing other life stuff and had not been able to cruise in the last 4 years we wanted a ship that had a lot of activities for my DH and Son. I loved this ship, I didn't love the buffet but I use the dining room as ... Read More
We have been busy doing other life stuff and had not been able to cruise in the last 4 years we wanted a ship that had a lot of activities for my DH and Son. I loved this ship, I didn't love the buffet but I use the dining room as much as possible anyway. The Gelato station was a hit! Beer by the ounce would have been great but I only wanted a few ounces and you get warm foamy beer. This ship had a fabulous at Sea brunch menu which was open longer hours. There are many things that made this ship a hit, lots of really cool stuff to do. I wish the Movies would have been open during the day hours more. The cabin was wonderful Cove Balcony 2nd floor mid ship was the absolute best and we had an adjoining cabin with other family members. The shows in Main theater I didn't care for, but plenty of people seemed to like it so that's just me. Plus there are plenty other things to do. So no complaining. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
the cruise was actually introduced to me by my mother and i was skeptical about it but surely glad that i went on it. I love the service food and activities. i also want to give a special shout out to Lawrence the cabin maintenance worker ... Read More
the cruise was actually introduced to me by my mother and i was skeptical about it but surely glad that i went on it. I love the service food and activities. i also want to give a special shout out to Lawrence the cabin maintenance worker for always keeping my room clean when i got back Cabin 7362 and 7364 and Marius and lindo my waiters for dinner table 229. Marius, Lindo and Lawrence made me feel very welcome and comfortable, Marius, Lindo and Lawrence hospitality was also amazing they remembered my name for the whole cruise trip. It was experience i would never forget thanks to them. Mr Liu also made very good omelets for me the fun squad made sports and activities very exciting. The only negative thing i have to say is the casino. The smell inside of the casino was horrific and nasty i had to cover my nose when walking through the casino the smell of the smoke was unbearable. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Ok, so, I'd read quite a few negative reviews on this site about Carnival Horizon which made me really not look forward to my cruise. I was expecting a ship with a horrible clientele, rude crew, awful food, a Sky Ride that didn't ... Read More
Ok, so, I'd read quite a few negative reviews on this site about Carnival Horizon which made me really not look forward to my cruise. I was expecting a ship with a horrible clientele, rude crew, awful food, a Sky Ride that didn't work and unclean public spaces. What I got was quite the opposite. I loved this cruise from start to finish. I loved the Dr Seuss waterpark and waterslides (my 13 year old daughter spent hours here whenever we were on board); I loved the Sky Ride too. I was expecting it to be a gimmick that wasn't too exciting, but it was much better than anticipated, whizzing up at certain points like a rollercoaster ride and taking me dizzyingly over the sea as well. I didn't try the high ropes course, but my daughter did - she found it tamer than other ships, but still liked it. Yes, the swimming pool areas were busy (although the slides never got too busy when we were there) but it you want to find a quiet sun bed, there are plenty of spaces where you can get away from the throng. Other reviews said that the bar staff didn't want to serve them. I didn't find this the case at all. I found ALL crew extremely friendly and bar staff were even happy to serve me regular iced waters for free. The vibe on the ship was always unplifiting, with a fun (but not in your face) entertainment team. We didn't spend much time at the shows (we did dip in and out of the theatre, but nothing took our fancy) because we LOVED the live music on board, more than we have on any other ship. We kept following the sounds of different music. An accoustic guitarist in the Pig & Anchor bar; then a pianist in the piano bar; then a live Latino band in the Havana Bar. We particularly liked the Havana Bar and went there most nights after dinner to enjoy the music and dance to a few tracks. It was a lovely place and really felt like we were in Cuba - very atmospheric. Food - this was heavily criticised in some reviews I read. What I do agree with is that the food in the Lido restaurant is limited. It's not that the food itself isn't tasty, it's that the range of dishes was not usually so healthy - like deep fried chicken, mac and cheese. There were rarely any steamed vegetables, for example - just a boring salad bar. BUT, there were so many other great places to eat on the ship that we just didn't care. The specialty restaurants are free at lunch time, so we went to them then - we loved the Mongolian Wok and the Pig & Anchor especially. We also found Horizon's BEST KEPT SECRET. This is Ocean Plaza on deck 5. We had breakfast there every day. It has a small selection of hot and cold dishes, no queues, and its own al fresco eating area on the promenade deck next to it. We were practically the only ones there most days. It was a heavenly start to every day. We could have had lunch there too - there are salads etc and soups, but my daughter isn't a mad salad fan, so we didn't do that. And as for dinner, we ate in the Meridian restaurant and found the food to be pretty good, ditto the service. It wasn't slow ever. Most often we just had two courses and we were in and out in about an hour. Equally we could have lingered and had desert if we had room. We did try specialty restaurant Ji JI's one night - it is sensational, especially the duck and pork belly. We LOVED our meal. We also tried Cucina del Capitano (the Italian specialty restaurant) and the food here was excellent too - great meatballs, GREAT risotto - I love rissotto and this was one of my favourites ever. Ports were great too and we did exciting things from them all. If you want to check out what the whole cruise was like (ship and ports) then this video should give you a good idea: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqRkOdBb4P4 Now for the ports: 1. Grand Turk: we did the ship eco kayak excursion - it was a nice gentle excursion with only 8 people on it. We liked it, but we didn't LOVE it, although my daughter really enjoyed the sea life the guide kept fishing out the water: sea cucumber, sponges, star fish, urchins, brittle stars etc. And we kayaked to a remote beach where we pootled around, looking for conches (we left them all there, don't worry) and finding lots of wild donkeys. There are lots of donkeys roaming free on Grand Turk. And then afterward we had time to chill on the beach by the ship for an hour or so before we had to get on board. 2. Dominican Republic: we didn't like the look of the ship excursions so we went to a gorgeous deluxe resort hotel near the port (Casa de Campo) for the day instead. It was gorgeous. There were ship excursions to this resort, actually, but they only took you to one bit of the resort and we wanted to decide what we did. In the end we stayed on their beach and went horse-riding at their ranch for an hour. 3. Curacao - I almost don't want to tell you what I did, because what we did was very untouristy and I don't want to drive the masses there, but we found a local beach an hour away from port called Playa Piscado which locals told us was home to green turtles. The beach isn't beautiful, but the turtles were there and we went snorkelling with them. It was AMAZING. We did this by ourselves. 4. Aruba - again, we went away from the crowds, on a guided hike I organised before coming through the tourist board. It was on the southern point of the island called Seroe Colorado and we clambered over rocks until we reached this amazing cenote (a Mexican word for swimming hole). Read Less
Carnival Horizon Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.5 0.0
Enrichment 1.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0

Find a Carnival Horizon Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise