1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We had some time off for spring break. There were four of us all adults who were out of school for the week and in need of some relaxation and vitamin sea. We picked this cruise for the 8 days and haven't been to any of these ports ... Read More
We had some time off for spring break. There were four of us all adults who were out of school for the week and in need of some relaxation and vitamin sea. We picked this cruise for the 8 days and haven't been to any of these ports before. I personally think that vacations are what you make of them. They can be as busy as you choose or as relaxing as you choose. No not everything will always be perfect but if you let people or things stress you out then shame on you, it defeats the purpose of vacationing. This cruise was absolutely AMAZING. We have never been on the Sunshine before and we loved the different layout than those ships we've been on in the past. We loved how they had all the food places in the different areas of the ship. We always love the DELI, and GUYS burgers did not dissapoint. We didn't try the italian or wok place except for breakfast so cannot comment on that. They had food/snacks in the Havana Bar and by the Ocean plaza that were never as busy as the lido buffet. Food in the dining room this cruise was superb. Every single night we each tried multiple appetizers or entrees and loved them all.(oops not ALL there was one pasta dish that I didn't like the sauce of) Some appetizers we liked we ordered seconds or thirds of and had no problem getting them served. Lobster night and filet mignon nights were delish, prime rib was done perfectly, in the past we've had problems with steaks or lobster being too done but not this time. Enjoyed a good variety of desserts with baked Alaska being my fave. We did have my time dining every night and it went fairly smooth. We had to wait for a few minutes each night but that wasn't a problem, we just signed in online & it texted when our table was ready so we'd have a drink at the Red Frog Pub or Alchemy Martini Bar. Unfortunately not the same wait staff each night but we still had pretty good service. We also did do breakfast in the dining room most days and the food/staff were just as good early morning. I loved the steak & eggs(yes same filet mignon at dinner) and the brunch mac & cheese was almost as good as Noodles & Company. We definitely put the midnight pizza bar to the test. Hit it all but one night after casino, shows, or piano bar and it was good and very very busy(so take your patience with you). The cruise director MIKEY is awesome. I think he was the best we've seen. Always energetic and friendly. Don't miss the 80's trivia in the atrium bar IT WAS A BLAST. Get seats to enjoy the entertainment and laughs :) His assistant Nicky from England was fun and top notch as well. We did play trivia throughout the week and the hosts were fun and witty. Music around the ship was plentiful and enjoyed by all. We loved Cassidy Rae Wilson in the Piano Bar. It was her last week working so she is back to Australia until the fall, but we hope to cruise with her again. The gentleman that plays on the stairwell outside of the sports bar, pixels photo area, and above atrium bar was so good. I feel bad that I forget his name but he played tunes that everyone enjoyed, oldies thru current definitely a good singer. The duet of Young Patches were pretty good as well they played through different areas of the ship. They are from Cali and definitely look hipster :) RB & The Sunshine Band always had good tunes as well. Their 80s night was great!! Don't miss the Red Frog Bar on this ship . 1/2 price happy hour every day with fish bowls and other special drinks. They have karaoke, shuffleboard and foosball in the back as well. The Punchliner Comedy Club had some good talent for sure. Missed one night but they sure did put smiles on our faces. ADULT SERENITY AREA ALL I CAN SAY IS WOW !! This is the best from our 13 cruises. We've been on Carnival and 2 RCCL and this was just so relaxing and had so much room and on three decks. LOVED IT :) Aruba: what a beautiful place. We spent the day at MooMba Beach, Aruba and it did not disappoint. We changed clothes at the Holiday Inn and very much enjoyed this port. We had booked on our own a sunset sail with The Jolly Pirate and had an amazing time on that 5:30-7:30pm excursion. It was good for adults as well as the several families aboard seemed to have a good time. Curacao: another beautiful place. We spent the afternoon at the Renaissance hotel right at the port. It has two infinity pools and a small beach. It was nice, quiet and very relaxing. Absolutely breath taking and not very crowded at all. You can get a day pass at the resort by just walking up. Amber Cove Dominican: we had heard there were lazy rivers, pools, zip lining, volleyball etc..... right at the pier so we did not make any plans for this day. We slept in, ate breakfast and spent a few hours here. They have $10 buckets of beer and lots of fun stuff to do. You can zip line all day for $20/person. Everyone we saw here seemed to be enjoying themselves. We will definitely do this again. The other couple we were with tried to get a taxi to the beach but it was on the other side of the island and they wanted $60 each way for a taxi, needless to say they enjoyed the area right at the port. PS) As you made read in other reviews from this week DISEMBARKING was not fun. There were delays and our ship arrived late plus we had to clear customs. Lots of people were not off the ship till 10:30 or later and people were pissed.......... This is why cruise lines suggest you fly out in the afternoon in case of issues. Lots of people missed flights etc..... sad for those who had this happen but it is what it is and hopefully everyone made it home safely Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We stayed at the Quality Inn in Cocoa Beach(??). The price included our room, transportation from the Orlando Airport to the hotel, shuttle to the ship, and transportation from the ship back to the airport. A real bargain. We ... Read More
We stayed at the Quality Inn in Cocoa Beach(??). The price included our room, transportation from the Orlando Airport to the hotel, shuttle to the ship, and transportation from the ship back to the airport. A real bargain. We chose this cruise because of the itinerary; islands that we had never visited before. Embarkation went very smoothly; disembarkation.....not so much. We have been on numerous Carnival ships, some larger, some smaller. But, for some reason, this is the first time I have ever felt that the ship was crowded. I feel as though when Carnival refurbished the ship, they tried to cram too many things into the space. Some areas seemed underutilized; others, such as the Comedy Club were packed with standing room only, and some people not able to get in at all. Too have to stand in line for 45 minutes or more, just to get into the Comedy Club (and not sure you will get a seat) seems a little ridiculous. Our cabin was great (we were offered an upgrade and took it); the staff was overworked, but kept our cabin clean. Dining - we only went to the main dining room once (it takes too long to get through a meal) That dinner was good. There was plenty of food at the Lido buffet, and at all of the other food areas around the ship. The Deli always had a line waiting for food and sometimes had only 1 person to wait on everyone. Guy's Burgers always had a long line that often blocked people trying to get from one area of the Lido deck to the other. I miss the old style of desserts at the Lido Buffet. I used to like to take a couple of the small desserts that they used to have, to sample. On the Sunshine, they had whole cakes, and a few pies, that they cut to serve you. They were all very delicious, but one slice of one kind of cake was enough. Mikey, the Entertainment Director, knows how to pull the people into the activities. He always had the crowd up and into the spirit! There were other activities going on throughout each day, although on one of the first sea days, the activities were very dull and then we had a port day and there were lots of interesting sounding things going on back on the ship! I managed to see two of the comedians; Diane Ford was great, both at the PG show and later at the 18+ show. The male comedian wasn't even good; I had heard some of his jokes before and the ones I hadn't heard before weren't that funny. Then I caught a cold and didn't feel like going to see the comedians that came later in the week. Service was always good with many of the crew members going around with a smile on their faces. Alexis, from the Red Frog Pub, was absolutely my favorite! The ports were all beautiful. We took excursions in Aruba and Curacao with guides who taught us a great deal about their islands and took us through many areas, both ending at beautiful beaches. In Amber Cove, we did our own thing and enjoyed wandering around the town. Would I go again? Yes, to the islands, but not on the Sunshine if I can help it. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We joined two other couples with whom we were stationed in the military 20+ years ago for a reunion cruise. We knew it was during Spring Break so we expected lots of children, which was the case. It wasn’t too much problem until late ... Read More
We joined two other couples with whom we were stationed in the military 20+ years ago for a reunion cruise. We knew it was during Spring Break so we expected lots of children, which was the case. It wasn’t too much problem until late night (late for us, like 10:00 pm!), when the teenagers were running through the ship. However, it really wasn’t too intrusive. The embarkation was very smooth. We were on the ship smoothly and our cabin was ready as promised at 1:30. Conversely, the disembarkation was a cluster. Our ship arrived two hours late, and we waited hours to leave the ship. Our bags were in a large room, sorted by zones, but it appeared everyone disembarked at the same time. It was very disorganized. We stayed at the Radisson the night prior to our cruise and utilized their parking service. I would advise everyone to avoid this service due to the incredible rudeness and poor organization at disembarkation. The gentleman driving the scooter (perhaps due to a foot injury) was particularly rude. The food on the cruise was just ok. The service and food has certainly declined in the past few years but is what we expected. The food was plentiful, of course, with plenty of different venues. The highlight of the cruise was the cruise director, Mikey. We enjoyed having him as our cruise director on the Fantasy last year and we feel he is the best cruise director we’ve ever had. It is worth following him and booking the cruise on which he is the cruise director; he’s that good! Overall, it was a good cruise! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
3/16 to 3/24 West Indies cruise to Turks & Caicos, Puerto Rico, St. Kitts & St. Maartin (9 day). The ship was a lesson in contrasts. Overall, I prefer to take the smaller, older classes of cruise ships over the new mega-ships ... Read More
3/16 to 3/24 West Indies cruise to Turks & Caicos, Puerto Rico, St. Kitts & St. Maartin (9 day). The ship was a lesson in contrasts. Overall, I prefer to take the smaller, older classes of cruise ships over the new mega-ships because I find the crowds more manageable. The Carnival Sunshine fills this desire perfectly. Sections of the boat are a bit dated and you can still feel the 1990's original construction in the common area, the casino, the small pool sizes and the bathrooms/staterooms. It's all very clean and in good repair, just feels like a well broken in decor all around. We stayed in cabin 7174, which is a U-type suite, for three people (My Wife and I and our seven year old). The room was spacious with a nice vanity area and a balcony overlooking the water around mid-ship. The only complaint about the cabin is the location with regard to special events and evening entertainments in the common room on deck 3. We turn in early and were kept awake most nights until after 11:00 pm.. Bring foam ear plugs. Thank God I did. Dining was actually better than I expected. I thought overall the dining rooms had better quality and tasting food than Royal Caribbean's mega-ships. That really surprised me. The lido deck serves average breakfast and lunch fare with the only complaint being a lack of variety with the same basic choices (especially breakfast). Tip: Visit the alchemy bar near the coffee shop next to the casino for a more un-crowded breakfast and lunch dining option. The main dining room had very good quality food and we had six pm dining. We did go to Fahrenheit 555 for dinner one night but wasn't impressed. My Wife's lobster tails were char grilled and burnt and my steak was average. We found a hair in one of the gummies that came with the "Chef's Art at the Table" dessert and couldn't eat it. When brought to staff's attention, nothing was done, so we left. The entertainments and activities were good, except for the lounge singers hired for the common area. The solo guitarist was always flat (cringe worthy vocals dude) and the Cheech and Chong looking duo were likewise awful. As to the daily activities, you'll just have to explore and find your own path. They were all good: Ocean club, the waterworks, the serenity pool deck, movie nights, magic show, comedians, main performers and Mikey the cruise director held it all in check. The service is excellent and the staff will go to great lengths to spoil you and make sure you're having a good time. We fell into a slightly scary experience with a tween-ager that was on the pool deck without adult supervision. My Wife and I had noticed the girl before at many of the events we'd taken our own daughter to (build a bear, ocean club, etc..) and she was oddly always alone with no parents in sight. Long story short, the girl slipped walking down the stairs from the hot tubs to the pool deck and whacked her head very hard against the steps (fell backward). Her towel and personal things were right next to me and she sat down very dazed and confused. Several parents and grandparents immediately asked if she was our daughter (she wasn't) and how they'd witnessed her fall, and after she failed to respond to our questions, we called cruise emergency 911. A nurse and the hospital wing staff arrived about a minute later, thoroughly questioned the adults that had witnessed her fall, realized she was probably concussed and safely moved her to a wheelchair to wheel her down to medical for further treatment and observation. I hope the girl was okay, we never did find out how she was but she was in good hands. I'd hate to see her parent's medical bill for it but the kid was fairly neglected by their absence for the cruise up to that point. Kudos to the medical staff for a fast response. We availed ourselves of excursions in three of the four ports, skipping San Juan for just a margarita at Senior Frogs and a walk up and down the port park. At Turks and Caicos, we took the glass bottomed boat tour and beach break and that was amazing. Beautiful unspoiled reefs and iced blue waters on a beautiful beach afterward. Free rum punch on the boat tour put all of us in a good mood. In St. Kitts, we did the rain forest 4x4 island tour and beach break. The rain forest area was full of monkeys and the elevated views of both sides of the island were breathtaking. The beach break was short (only an hour) and we spent it at the bar getting lunch. The last excursion we booked was the air conditioned bus tour in St. Maartin with lunch/beach break. Our driver showed us the level of devastation caused by Irma and Louis and both the French side and the Dutch side were totally ruined, but the French side on the Atlantic got it so much worse. Rebuilding continues but expect to see the remains of a horrible hurricane history. The driver stopped at a French side market to let us shop, then took us to a private beach near the airport (not the famous airport landing strip beach but very near it). Lunch was amazing (snapper) and there was an expansive crescent shaped ice blue water beach for us to swim in. Beautiful. Tips: Mid ship cabins around the common room elevators on deck 3 are a lot louder than you'd think for noise. Book fore or aft midship and you should have quiet. I'd totally book this cruise again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We were in hurricane Michael disaster from panama city ( cat 4, more 5ish) and needed time away knowing these other islands suffered like us 2 years ago. It was nice to see the recovery and beauty they restored with hope we will do the ... Read More
We were in hurricane Michael disaster from panama city ( cat 4, more 5ish) and needed time away knowing these other islands suffered like us 2 years ago. It was nice to see the recovery and beauty they restored with hope we will do the same. The staff on board were amazing. Comedian Chis W. was awesome and Mikey and staff were amazing. We felt so welcomed and my 3 kids enjoyed every minute of our experience. Would I travel again on Carnival Sunshine....oh whoot whoot hell yah! The team fun and entertainment were awesome, kids had camp....which they actually got mad when i had to pull them out for meals...everybody was friendly and awesome. So much entertainment. With over 3000 guests the crew quickly learned your names, kids, drinks of choice, and just fun things about you. They really made you feel like family. These memories with the crew will stay with my kids for a lifetime. Thank you! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This was my first time on the Sunshine. After just coming off the Breeze 4 months ago, it was shocking how much smaller this ship is. There are far too many passengers for the small space. Lines for lunch were far too long. Havana bar ... Read More
This was my first time on the Sunshine. After just coming off the Breeze 4 months ago, it was shocking how much smaller this ship is. There are far too many passengers for the small space. Lines for lunch were far too long. Havana bar area is the best place to relax and eat. In general, the food was blah.....boring and no seasonings.....Carnival really needs to take the flavors up a notch. Desserts and breads were horrible. The Library area was always closed due to Chefs table dinners. Cruise director Mikey is awesome. Far better than CD on the Breeze. Curaçao was by far my favorite port. It is nice to be able to shop at places that are not the normal run of the mill cruise port shops. Balcony cabin was smaller than most, and cabin steward was not the best. The beach at Grand Turk is the best.....shopping it's the worst Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Pros: ports, crew, made to order food Cons: Too much walking, too many people, awful seasickness, terrible WiFi Ports were great, Dominican my favorite. Abject poverty behind Carnival’s front of shops and bars. Crew was great, all ... Read More
Pros: ports, crew, made to order food Cons: Too much walking, too many people, awful seasickness, terrible WiFi Ports were great, Dominican my favorite. Abject poverty behind Carnival’s front of shops and bars. Crew was great, all of them. We had an outstanding steward named Anthony. Made to order omelettes, Guy’s burgers, JiJi Asian, all fabulous. Just too much walking for me and people everywhere. Waited often to get on elevators. Unsupervised kids running amok. WiFi package useless, didn’t work. Very few quiet places on the ship. Not enough pools for all the people and people fighting over chairs on several decks. The ship was all over the place, bumping, creaking, rocking, bouncing, it was awful. Captain told us at one point to hold on to rails. High winds both ways. Missed captain’s dinner and last night of 80’s bands & trivia because of terrible seasickness and I was prepared with Seabands, meclizine, and ginger chews. Spent more time in stateroom than anywhere else unless at port. Showered only when ship was docked. First and last cruise. I didn’t pay all that money to feel like that. Know that if you go on a cruise you are at the mercy of the ocean. Cruise director just annoying at times to me like the Rachel Ray of cruise directors, constantly on the PA system, waking people up and making Carnival sound like they were the most fabulous trip in the world not knowing how many people were sick below on the decks. Really annoying. The crew works hard. There was a language barrier with some which could be a bit frustrating, but we managed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
My family chose this cruise because we wanted a 5 day cruise and we love Amber Cove. We have been on 10 or more cruises. We don't have high expectations. We just love to get away and relax and enjoy cruising. The Sunshine is in very ... Read More
My family chose this cruise because we wanted a 5 day cruise and we love Amber Cove. We have been on 10 or more cruises. We don't have high expectations. We just love to get away and relax and enjoy cruising. The Sunshine is in very good condition for an older ship. Here goes my opinion. The ship is much to small for the amount of people on board. It has been re-furbished. The serenity deck is awesome. The Havana Bar area is beautiful. The Lido marketplace have the least amount of food options of any cruise I have been on. The lines for Mongolian Wok and Blue Iguana at lunch were terrible. We noted some people waited as long as 30 minutes. Guys burgers are great. Crowded but the line moved fast. Main dining room good on the one night we attended. Had my time dining. No wait if you go early. Main pool area too small and not enough chairs for amount of passengers. If you went to a show you need to go at least 30 minutes early to get a seat. Very small area. I don't smoke but some family members do. Smoking area on deck 10 very small with very limited seating. The staff was pleasant but obviously to busy to be very personable except for our room steward who was great. Cruise Director was Mickey and he was great. Amber Cove is very beautiful and relaxing. Grand Turk seemed like more locals were following you around on the beach and harassing you to get chairs etc. I would definitely suggest an excursion at this port. I will continue to Cruise again with Carnival but not again on the Sunshine. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We went on this cruise with 2 other couples after booking a year in advance. We had been on this same ship shortly after the major renovations for a 9 day Europe cruise and loved it. This was our 7th Carnival Cruise. First time out of ... Read More
We went on this cruise with 2 other couples after booking a year in advance. We had been on this same ship shortly after the major renovations for a 9 day Europe cruise and loved it. This was our 7th Carnival Cruise. First time out of Port Canaveral. Absolutely everything about this cruise was wonderful. Embarkation was smooth. Spa Room on Deck 11 was great and contrary to another reviewer, we are not platinum yet but we did get twice a day cleaning of our room. You are given a choice by your steward at the beginning of the cruise. We spent most of our time on the Serenity deck, and after a few days on Deck 11, we started hanging out on Deck 14 - easier to get chairs and not quite as busy. The umbrella tables and the bar stool type section that overlooks the ship were great fun. We never smelled cigarette smoke as other reviewers reported - perhaps it's location specific but we did not notice. Breakfast buffet never had lineups. Lunch choices were numerous including the free Italian and Japanese at the back of the ship. Our dining room waiters were the best ever and were funny, accommodating and attentive. We were offered coffee every night, I noticed someone said they were not so not sure why. The food was mostly very good - prime rib two different nights were a choice and filet mignon on another night was an option. Entertainment was very good and the cruise director Mikey was the absolute best ever. Another reviewer said he was bland but that is the furthest from the truth - he had more energy and was more entertaining than any cruise director we have ever come across. His goal was to talk to each and every passenger during the cruise and true to his word he came and introduced himself to our group. He got more participation out of the cruisers in events than I have ever seen. The musical show we went to was very good and the 2 comedian shows were good. Ports of call were Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Kitts & St. Maarten. Went to the rum factory in San Juan on our own (25 cents for the ferry each way) and of note - St. Maarten is very much rebuilt and lots of shops and restaurants overlooking the beach. The only thing I wish different was that they didn't remove the news channels on the room tv. Otherwise, this cruise was perfect and was probably my favourite Caribbean cruise ever. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
The shows were the best part. The performers were very talented The cruise director kept the entertainment flowing well The staff was accommodating when asked. The dining experience was poor in the dining room. A few too many ... Read More
The shows were the best part. The performers were very talented The cruise director kept the entertainment flowing well The staff was accommodating when asked. The dining experience was poor in the dining room. A few too many cold over cooked foods for our small group of four One guest needed special food preparations due to food allergies The food was not prepared as well as it had been on other ships The choices were limited and were often served plain without flavor We booked 3 excursions through Carnival basically bus tours due to the mobility of one of our group. These tours always depend on the tour guide you get Unfortunately we did not luck out with oue San Juan tour. He was not very good.not engaging at all Our guide in St Kitts was informative and you felt at ease to ask questions The last was of St Martin the bus driver as well as the tour guide were very good. Our trip was wonderful I hope when The Sunshine starts sailing out of Charleston the dining will improve Read Less
Carnival Sunshine Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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