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8 Night Southern Caribbean Cruise from Miami

8 Night Southern Caribbean Cruise from Miami

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Carnival Horizon (Photo: Cruise Critic)
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Itinerary

  • Day 1
    Miami
  • Day 2
    Cruising
  • Day 3
    Cruising
  • Day 4
    Aruba
  • Day 5
    Bonaire
  • Day 6
    La Romana (Casa de Campo)
  • Day 7
    Amber Cove
  • Day 8
    Cruising
  • Day 9
    Miami

Carnival Horizon

Carnival Horizon - Carnival Cruise Line

Pros

Activity-packed ship with plenty to do without massive upcharges

Cons

Finding a spot for some peace and quiet is tricky

Bottom Line

Great value, perfect for families


Cruise Reviews

Sail Date: June 2019
I chose this cruise because of the destinations. Some of the staff were a little so aggressive for my taste (eastern European women). The dinner check in was aggravation and dining on the last few days felt a rush and not much effort was ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the destinations. Some of the staff were a little so aggressive for my taste (eastern European women). The dinner check in was aggravation and dining on the last few days felt a rush and not much effort was put in towards the food. The cabin was an ok size. Ship was beautiful. Elevators could be a little confusing and way too crowded because of how it's set up. The liquor store did not have the jamaican cream rum I wanted. I was told they would not have it until the ship return to port in Miami (that was day 2). Not really enough on board activities. We had to wait in line about 2 hours in the hot sun to board the ship because Carnival was late letting people get on. It was a nightmare. All in all it was a good trip and a fun experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
I commend the Cruise Director, entertainment staff and Playlist Productions on a wonderful experience. The Celestial Strings was by far the best production i've seen on any ship. This was quite a stunning performance and the team is ... Read More
I commend the Cruise Director, entertainment staff and Playlist Productions on a wonderful experience. The Celestial Strings was by far the best production i've seen on any ship. This was quite a stunning performance and the team is very talented. The Cruise Director Mike is so entertaining and has so much energy and really knows how to pump up the crowd and include everyone. He was EVERYWHERE ensuring fun! Our family loved him. The dining room staff was upbeat and they had a few really good dancers surprisingly. The food was average and I recommend ordering from the Grill. There were several dishes I had to send back, but overall we were satisfied. The salmon was amazing and the lobster was very good! The buffet could use some healthier options and wish it was open after long port stays when pizza or burgers were the only options....i love guy's burgers but really dont want to live off them for days. I would like more fruit and green options as well for breakfast. Would be nice to have more than one cook on omelette station. The bar service was great and so was the pool service. Rarely had to wait for drinks. They were really on top of it. I had a balcony room, 7223 and our cabin steward was Arnell. He was by far the best i've had on over 10 cruises. The room was spotless and we always had fresh pool and bath towels. We were so impressed. I tend to do my own things for excursions and rented a jeep in Grand turk. This was such a great option for us as we got to go offroad to a few "off the beaten places" and felt completely safe on this island. Love this island and the snorkling here is topnotch. We rented a van in Aruba with another family and again, this was a great way to see the island and go at our pace. We took taxi in LaRamona to the beach which was 25 mins away. There were many "sales" people every 2 minutes trying to sell stuff but the service for chairs/food was nice. The beach was clean but we were not impressed with this port and would not want to return. No areas to walk too and many people didnt feel safe as there have been many issues in the country for tourists recently. Curacao was beautiful and we taxi'd to Mambo beach in the afternoon and enjoyed walking the city for shopping in the morning. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
Many months ago, we chose this cruise primarily because of date availability and number of activities for our 3 grandchildren, ages 6-14. When we realized booking in the Family Harbor was basically the same price as a regular interior, we ... Read More
Many months ago, we chose this cruise primarily because of date availability and number of activities for our 3 grandchildren, ages 6-14. When we realized booking in the Family Harbor was basically the same price as a regular interior, we went that route because of the private lounge for gaming, snacks, coffee, television, etc. This was the first time we have tried doing a family cruise with 11 of us. There were some challenges with that. But overall, it was still super. My wife and I have cruised about 12 times on various ships, but this was the largest ship we've booked and there is good and bad that goes with that. The embarkation was very smooth. We chose to park our cars off-sight, so we did a drive-through the Port of Miami to drop 9 people plus all our luggage. The 2 drivers then headed off to park the vehicles on the mainland, catch the shuttle back to the Port, and get with the family. Family was dropped off at 12:00 noon, and we boarded the boat at 1:00 pm. We couldn't get to our rooms right then, but with a little sweet-talking, they did allow us to head into the Family Harbor area just to drop off our carry on's at our room before heading on to lunch. We chose Guy's Pig & Anchor on Deck 5 for our lunch rather than head to the Lido Buffet. Overall, a good decision. The food at the BBQ was not quite what I had hoped for, but it was good, and it was even better when very few people seemed to opt for that choice despite it being free on sailing day. Overall, meals were good--above average. Nothing just wowed me at dinners, but all was good. We chose Anytime Dining, but after our first night of meeting our waiters that night, we zeroed in on making a point to get to them each night. "Big G" was our waiter---he was phenomenal with our kids! He was a grandfather of 3, and I think our 3 must have reminded him of his own grandkids. He made them feel so special. So, as the week wore on, our "Anytime Dining" was driven by our ability to get to Big G's table. The process of getting your Anytime Dining seating was a little different. You had to go to the coffee bar on Floor 5 to "check in" and show your entire party. At that point, you would be sent back to floor 3 to the dining hall, or given a beeper and told you would be called in a while. Sea Days were incredibly busy in the Water Parks area and Ropes Course/SkyRider. On the day the boat was in Cozumel, we made a decision to stay onboard with the grandkids so they could have complete access to those activities without the long lines. I would advise thinking about doing that as well. Pick a day you are not going into a port and use the ship's activities without all the hassles. All of those activities also have limited hours. The Water Park closes at 6:00 pm every evening. Check the hours on your Carnival Hub regularly to make sure you don't miss opportunities to do things. We found the Deli line and Pizza Line to not even be worth the hassle in the late evenings. I don't ever recall being on a cruise where I didn't hit up the Pizza Place at least a few times late in the evening. One night on the way to the Ice Cream dispenser, I hit a line and asked the people what it was for. "The Deli" was the answer. I refuse to wait 45 minutes for a Reuben at 10:30 at night. That was probably the biggest downer on the cruise for us was more long lines. We knew with the bigger ships, that might be an issue. It was a little more than I was comfortable with. Guy's Burger Joint on the Pool Deck on Sea Days was at least 30 people deep for hours at a time. Sea Days, normally a favorite of mine, were uncomfortable due to the crowds. I also acknowledge if we were not traveling with kids, there were other options available for adult pools and areas. Highlights were our excursions of Mystic Mountain/Jamaican Bobsled Run & Dunn River Falls climb in Jamaica. Our oldest son and wife took the 3 kids on a swim with the stingrays trip in Grand Cayman. They had a real blast doing that as well. Both of these excursions were great. My wife did not care for the Promenade Shops at all on this boar. They are good for expensive watches, perfume, or liquor. The normal shops where you can walk around and look at clothes and knick-knacks just weren't there. In her eyes, this was a major bummer. PIxels photo lobby was great--had not been on a cruise since the photo shops have gone more modern. Now you just log in and look at your photos vs. see all the photos lined up on the wall. Much smoother. Debarkation was a disaster for some reason. We were very, very late getting off the boat. In fact, still sitting there at 11:00 waiting for number to be called. This was contrary to everything I'd read about the new procedures in Port of Miami being smoother. I will assume it was an anomaly, but on this particular day, it was a long, long wait. We were beginning to think we'd get to sail away with the next group of passenger. Overall, it was a great trip with family. A memory maker. We didn't care for the long lines, the shoppes, casino (super small), but there were plenty of activities, wonderful dining room staff, nice sea day brunch, and plenty of positives. We enjoy Carnival--just understand it is what it is---low cost (for the most part) carrier with not a lot of the frills, bells and whistles you might like, but it got the job done for the 11 of us. Read Less
View All Carnival Horizon Reviews
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