Carnival Vista Cruise Review by Jodyca
- Sail Date: May 2016
- Destination: Western Mediterranean
- Cabin Type: Premium Balcony
The Vista is a very large ship with a capacity of over 3900 passengers. I think our sailing, the second sailing for this new ship, was totally booked. So, because of the volume of passengers, there were lines. There were long lines at embarkation. There were long lines at the buffets. The elevators were always crowded. The excursions included LOTS of people. The lines at the Must See destinations were very long. It was raining at one of our destinations, and standing in line, in the pouring rain, with hundreds of travelers from several different ships was a bit of a challenge. (Translated, that means pushing and shoving and people trying to cut in line because they all have to be back at the ship at the same time......) That was pretty frustrating....but totally not related to the services Carnival provided...
We used the formal dining and our wait staff was very attentive. The food was good and always there are many choices. We ate in the steakhouse one night and the service was phenomenal. We are pretty casual travelers and the formal service was simply amazing. The food was memorable. I think I will make the photo of my cheesecake the screensaver on my phone!!!!
Our itinerary was pretty challenging so we didn't use all the entertainment options, but we went to the piano bar (people were really enjoying themselves) and we watched a musical performance that was really really good.
Everyone on the ship was friendly. The Cruise Director seemed to be always available and was helpful and cheerful every time I saw him.
We enjoyed all of our ports. We went on ship excursions in Marseille and Ephesus, had a private excursion in Naples and took trains everywhere else we visited. The winery and Papal palace in Avignon were great. We managed the trains to Pisa and Lucca (Lucca is a beautiful medieval walled city). We were able to take the train to Rome. In Naples, we had a small private excursion by a company called Italytours.EU. There was a little confusion at first, but we had a lovely day and our driver was handsome and charming. Pompeii was so crowded I can't say we really saw much, again, there were many ships in port that day. In Ephesus we took a ship excursion. Our guide was very good. We very much enjoyed that day.....and there was a minimum of heavy-handed rug sales pitches.....Crete and Rhodes were wonderful islands to visit and we finished up with two nights in Athens. Rhodes is especially pretty and the entrance to the old city is a short walk from the port. We did have a wonderful time!
There were a few disappointments. Carnival scheduled a Mix and Mingle for our Cruise Critic roll call group and very few people attended. (to be fair, it was scheduled during a port visit and probably the other cruisers were not back yet.....) Because it was Cruise CRITIC, some of the attendees used that time to complain. The Carnival representatives listened intently to the complaints which were mostly about the food and pretty much about individual preferences.
The ports in Italy were pretty far from the iconic sights. The days we took the trains were a little nerve-wracking when we were on such a tight schedule. The crowds were really frustrating. We usually travel in the off season and we have previously visited many of the same sights in Italy as independent travelers. The huge lines were new to us.
I will cruise on the Carnival Vista again and I look forward to it. The itinerary in the Mediterranean is really ambitious. My personal choice will be the caribbean!! And MAYBE I will consider a smaller ship in the Carnival fleet!!
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
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