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Sail Date: August 2019
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any ... Read More
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any future cruises. If you have the money for a suite, it is 100% worth it. EMBARKATION- Being a suite guest, you have your own entrance and get escorted to your own personal attendant. My family and I were checked in via a tablet, had our pictures taken, and were on the boat in under 10 minutes. Fantastic. I was also carrying a bit of an injury and was limping about, but was very delighted that I was offered assistance by at least 6 people making my way to the ship. MUSTER DRILL- A note on everyone's favorite muster drill. I have been on 6 cruises all on different ships and the muster drill on the Harmony of the Seas was by far the worst of all. Most of the muster stations are located on the promenade level and not even in actual locations (i.e. the Casino or MDR). They are just located in "areas" of the promenade (mine was near the bionic bar), and they cram so many people in these "areas" and they want you to watch an instructional video on 40" TVs. The video also was made to "entertain" as you are following a spy across the ship and on the mission, the spy comes across "tips" to follow in the event of an emergency. I would assume it was not very easy to follow for most and due to the noise level of all the guests around you crammed into these stations, it is not easy to hear. Knock on wood that there is never an emergency on the Harmony, because I have the feeling it would be a disorganized mess. DEBARKATION- Another suite guest perk is that you meet in the fabulous coastal kitchen at 3 pre-determined meeting times. There was breakfast or hors d'oeuvre being served by 7am and then groups are personally escorted by the concierge all the way down in a priority elevator which makes no stops to the luggage pick-up location. Probably took us 10 minutes to get off the ship. SHIP - I have also sailed on the Oasis of the Seas and if you have been on that ship, you have been on the Harmony. Sure the Harmony has a few more amenities and entertainment, but it honestly didn't feel like I was on a completely different ship. Elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation (if not a suite guest) and immediately after shows or events as all guests filter out of them. I didn't ever feel like the ship was crowded at all, even in the pool areas on sea days (the pools are another story). I also mentioned to my wife that I didn't think the boat was anywhere near capacity either, so that could have been why. There need to be more pools or the pools need to be bigger. On sea days the pools are packed, so basically you are just standing in the water. My son likes to move around in the pool, so he didn't enjoy them as much and spent most of his time in the kids water area. I stayed away from the pools because I don't need to be in a pool with 50 people all with drinks in their hand which they are probably spilling. I'll pass. Another perk of being a suite member is that you can get towels without scanning your seapass card. Other guests must scan their seapass to get a towel and if not returned, you get charged $25. Suite gets get as many towels as needed and don't need to worry about returns (although we always returned ours). ENTERTAINMENT - Only caught two shows as we chose to relax on sea days. Did see the ice skating show 1887 which I liked, but wasn't very interesting according to the wife and son. The Line water show was great and we even ran into some of the performers on the non-performance days. KIDS CLUB - Hours are 9-12, 2-5, 7-10, and after hours which you pay $7 an hour for. My son who is 6 enjoyed the activities and was even asking us to take him on sea days! Must be good! FOOD - Suite guests get access to the coastal kitchen and to my family the Coastal Kitchen was the star of the cruise. They serve Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and hors d'oeuvre and there is a happy hour between 4:30 and 8 where select alcohol is free. Let me repeat this for all my alcohol consumers, there is FREE alcohol on a cruise ship. To me, that alone was worth having access to the Coastal Kitchen and my family had dinner there every night. It is also a more relaxing environment as there are 100x less people dining there as in the MDR. Breakfast and Lunch are your standard fare and the selection is the same everyday. But the dinner menu changes nightly and the food was very good. There was lamb, filet mignon, lobster, duck, salmon, you name it. There really was no need for us to eat in the MDR. The Coastal Kitchen was also were we met the service star of the cruise Rico. Wow, Rico was one of the best servers I have had the pleasure to meet anywhere. Knew everyone's name and beverage of choice on Day 2. Never let your glass hit empty before the next drink was on your table, gave excellent recommendations to eat. Rico is a treasure on this ship. Sorrento's - Decent "fast food" pizza. Johnny Rockets - Breakfast is free and the food is good. Serve omelettes, breakfast sandwiches, and pancakes. Windjammer - Horrible. Cold, Bland, Tough, all adjectives you don't want associated with your food. STAY AWAY! Park Cafe - Decent selection of "healthier" options like panini's, salads, pre-made sandwiches and salads. Nice eating area in Central Park Boardwalk Dog House - Pretty good dogs, that tasted fresh. I went with the Coney Island Dog with onions and sauerkraut. EXCURSIONS- Perfect Day at CocoCay was great. We were the only ship in port and as I stated earlier, I don't even think our ship was at capacity, so the island did not feel crowded at all. My family rented a cabana in the Water Park, which was very nice and convenient with a personal waiter, locker, and plenty of water as it was HOT. I was able to get on all the water slides (note that two of them get long lines the slingshot and the daredevil's peak (the tallest slide). My advice is to hit these slides right when you get off the ship or right at the end of the day or else you will be waiting in a long line. There was a storm off the island that caused the park to shutdown for about an hour, so many guests left back to the ship as Royal was refunding half day passes. My family also went up in the Hot Air Balloon which was cool, but not worth the money for the 10-15 minutes you are up there. Note for those with kids that 48" is the magic number to get on most of the slides. My son is 44" so he was limited on the slides he could get on, but he LOVED the wave pool. It was HOT, but being in the water felt great. San Juan - We did the El Yunque Natural Rainforest walking tour from El Yunque Tours which is a bit a ways from the ship. There is a 45 minute narrated bus ride to the site, where the guide gives you background on the history of Puerto Rico, the impact of the hurricane, and the El Yunque site. When you get to El Yunque, you have four stops. A brief 15 minute stop at an observation tower, which gives you great views and picture taking opportunities, a 5 minute stop at a waterfall on the side of the road to take a group photo, a stop to gear up where you are provided with backpacks, bug spray, water, snacks, umbrellas, and towels. Very high marks for the tour company for providing all these items. They say they are the "one stop shop" operation. Last stop is a good walk to a natural river pool to swim swim for about 20 minutes before heading back to the ship. High marks for Angel, Jorge, Michelle, and the owner Mike who are very knowledgeable and informed about the island. Returned to do a bit of shopping around the port. Shopping is better in Saint Maarten. St. Maarten- I did the Snuba Adventure through Snuba SXM. Great team of 3 (Sheldon, Mitch, Jonas (captain), are very laid back, but very knowledgeable. They stated that the hurricane had damaged 90% of the coral on the island and you could tell. I have done Snuba on 3 other occasions in different locations and I saw the least amount of fish in Saint Maarten. The water is nice and clear though and they have the staged helicopter and shipwreck underwater you can see. Still fun. My wife and son did the Pinel Island excursion and said they had a great time on the white sand beach. Iguanas everywhere that you can feed, my son loved that!. Did some shopping at the shops in the port area and found great deals on souvenirs, alcohol, and jewelry. Better deals than seen in San Juan for sure. Overall, the family had a great time and my son was asking if we could stay on the ship for a few more days. I have always been a fan of Royal Caribbean and we are looking to do a Mediterranean cruise next year. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
This ship is new and beautiful. There are a few things that I would recommend them adding and changing such as, the soda package comes with a refillable plastic cup which is nice and eco friendly but the problem I am having is there is ... Read More
This ship is new and beautiful. There are a few things that I would recommend them adding and changing such as, the soda package comes with a refillable plastic cup which is nice and eco friendly but the problem I am having is there is only about two soda machines accessible and most of the time one is closed your forced to go to the one at the pizza restaurant. Also, I would recommend longer hours for things such as food places etc. if you don't make it to dinner your stuck eating the same thing late night m, your two options are pizza or this small sandwich spot across from the pizza place thats all... on a cruise you expect there to be things like food places open for a much later time with much more options. Also, ice cream spots are very limited as well at close at 7pm so if you want some later on in the evening its not open. Now on to other things the ship itself is very nice and new we loved the ship. I do recommend more pools as it gets very packed on sea days. Staff all around has been amazing. Our house keeping lady Nancy is truly the kindest person ever!!! She always checks in with us and greets us at all times & helps us with anything we need she is amazing!!! Thank you Nancy! Your hard work is truly appreciated. For entertainment we saw the Greece show which was awesome! We also saw the Aqua show that was one awesome show as well very talented actors. Over all it was an amazing cruise with a few changes it would be the best cruise. I do recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Usually good. Limited choices Poor quality, poor service in main dining room. Buffet cut choices by more than 1/2. Afternoon is a burger or pizza. Not a whole lot more. Long lines at buffet, pizza took forever to make. Long line as well ... Read More
Usually good. Limited choices Poor quality, poor service in main dining room. Buffet cut choices by more than 1/2. Afternoon is a burger or pizza. Not a whole lot more. Long lines at buffet, pizza took forever to make. Long line as well there. Deli: forget it. One person helping long line, and selections have changed. Found many areas dirty. Public bathrooms not cleaned enough. Ship showing its age. Rust around doors. Shows: well boring. Not the best. Not great for kids. Same show we saw on another Carnival cruise. Oh, but if you want to have stuff sold to you every minute, well then come on board. That they excel at. Will sell you anything and everything, and pushy to make you buy. Drinks were good, but some bars took quite a while to serve you. Hey not every Carnival cruise can be the best. This one did let me down in many ways. Hopefully we’ll give them a try again in the future. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
This is our fourth Carnival cruise and second time with our teenagers. The ship seemed very well maintained and clean. It clearly showed how hard working staff they have on board to keep the ship clean and enjoyable. My husband and I were ... Read More
This is our fourth Carnival cruise and second time with our teenagers. The ship seemed very well maintained and clean. It clearly showed how hard working staff they have on board to keep the ship clean and enjoyable. My husband and I were also impressed at how thorough the staff was in cleaning the upper pool deck area each and every night. The extent of the staff draining the pool water nightly and literally scrubbing the entire pool and pool area was so good to see. We felt very welcome and most all staff was always smiling and very helpful. Our cabin was very clean and I always looked forward to coming back in the evening to a new towel animal lol. I cannot say enough about our stateroom stewardess Vasy and we hope this compliment makes it to her. She was very welcoming and thorough. She made us feel very comfortable and went out of her way to accommodate us and our teens which stayed in a seperate cabin. Dinner was amazing. There were many choices each night from your appetizer to the main dish followed by dessert. Another shout out to our service team in the dining room. Team Headwaiter Aldie,team waiter John and assistant team waitress Pascual. They were all so polite and thorough. We cannot say enough about them and again hope they see this and deserve a high five for all their hard work and pleasing the customers. My husband Tony and my son Nick and daughter Marissa as well as myself Bobbie Jo thank them all for a wonderful and memorable experience aboard Carnival Elation!!!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This cruise was by far the most terrible as far as customer service. Dining room room experience was awful, had to wait 15mins for water, bread was very hard and food was not at all appetizing. Attitudes were displayed as if the wait staff ... Read More
This cruise was by far the most terrible as far as customer service. Dining room room experience was awful, had to wait 15mins for water, bread was very hard and food was not at all appetizing. Attitudes were displayed as if the wait staff was irritated. It was very stuffy, a.c. Was not working to full capacity. Bar staff in the club was awful, attitudes, very slow and unenthusiastic with the exception of Sean (China) Santosa (Indonesia)@ the red rum bar they were AWESOME!!!! Give them a raise!!!! The public facilities were at minimal use, the dryers were broken and washers half washed the clothes. Pool areas were congested, maybe consider an adult only pool area. Food selections were always the same in the buffet area. Debarkation was very very slow and not very organized. Not very pleased with this cruise. This was my 6th cruise, hope things get better. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
EMBARKATION-Very organized, quick, and easy DEBARKATION-Easy and well explained the night before and the day of leaving SHIP-Exceptional, elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation,also after the popular shows. Best ... Read More
EMBARKATION-Very organized, quick, and easy DEBARKATION-Easy and well explained the night before and the day of leaving SHIP-Exceptional, elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation,also after the popular shows. Best to take stairs, if you are able. Staterooms are very adequate for three people, four people would be tight. Bathrooms are definitely a one person only. Definitely bring your own shampoo and conditioner (none provided). Our room 12581 & 12580 were well appointed and very quiet. Water slide lines can get long, but they move quickly and they are well worth the wait. The Abyss, dry slide, is fun, but not as challenging or scary as they make it sound. Many of the activities are well supervised and cover everyone’s choices from small children to adults. SPECIALTY RESTAURANTS- 150 North Central, Chops Grille, and Izumi Hibachi are amazing. Service was outstanding and menu choices covered anyone’s pallet from meat to vegetarian. Beef choices was excellent and very good quality. Seafood was very tender, large portions and the shrimp was large and meaty. AMERICAN ICON GRILL DINING ROOM-Service was excellent and main entree choices was excellent. EXCURSIONS-Perfect Day at CocoCay for our day was cut short due to severe storms. While we were able to go on the slides before the storms rolled in, were a lot of fun and yes, the lines do get very long. If there is lightning within 10 miles of the island all water slides get shut down. They do reopen when they get the “all clear” signal. Unfortunately their was such a severe storm that hit the island they shut down the island and very efficiently had everyone get back on the ship. Royal Caribbean is such a high class ship they refunded everyone’s money if they paid for the Thrillpark portion of the island. St. Thomas-We had seen the town and did shopping on pervious cruises, so we opted for the St. John On Your Own. DO NOT , I repeat DO NOT. Do this tour!! This was totally misrepresented in the excursion detail. It showed and explained that you would be dropped off at a beach and be picked up at a designated time to get back to the ship. WRONG! We were dropped off at a pier and told if you want a beach you had to walk three miles one way in very unsafe conditions. Dirt, rocks, and stones on a man made path. Nobody knew that we went this way and we were all in bathing suits and flip flops. Finally made it to Honeymoon Beach, no chairs, no drinking water, and nothing around. Please do not do this tour especially if you have younger children. St. Maarten- we chose the Power Boat tour with lunch. Well worth the money and excellent narration of the island and the many different areas. Overall this was more than all of us ever expected. Looking forward to going on another Royal Caribbean cruise in two years. Have to save money for the newer ship in 2021. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
The service at dinner was great. And the visit to Magen’s bay was fantastic. Other than that, the weather was quite unpredictable, coco cay was not perfect, all excursions cancelled because of stormy weather, we were able to enjoy part ... Read More
The service at dinner was great. And the visit to Magen’s bay was fantastic. Other than that, the weather was quite unpredictable, coco cay was not perfect, all excursions cancelled because of stormy weather, we were able to enjoy part of the day. Be warned that you cannot do lap swim on the ship, the pool is very small, crowded and dirty. Jacuzzi was good. They put the smoking section near the swimming pool. You will smell quite a bit of ship exhaust in the sports area and the aqua theater. The surf rider if you don’t know what you are doing don’t ride the surf, you can get seriously injured. The food was okay, most of it was salty. The breakfast and lunch have little variety, if you have a balcony get it at mid or front section to avoid the exhaust. We did not do the tour on st marten , the beach there are many scammers trying to get you pay fit chair and umbrella. It is not a bad cruise, we had plenty of bad luck, it is definitely one of the worst I had gone, the cabin lock did not work at first Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We had a 4 family group of 14 and could not have asked for a better cruise. We celebrated a birthday, a graduation and a couple of wedding anniversaries. The cruise director MarQ is a dynamo. I am not sure when this guy sleeps. As one of ... Read More
We had a 4 family group of 14 and could not have asked for a better cruise. We celebrated a birthday, a graduation and a couple of wedding anniversaries. The cruise director MarQ is a dynamo. I am not sure when this guy sleeps. As one of my fellow cruisers stated, if you aren't enjoying this cruise, you need to have a drink and relax. The food and service was wonderful. The Blush dining room staff was fantastic, "Som and YumYum" provided wonderful service and were loads of fun. Our cabin steward, Korn was wonderful. We could not have asked for better service, the room was alway clean and appointed. This ship was at full capacity, there were lines but they never seemed to take long. Embarkation was quick and simple. Debarkation was completely flawless, of course we handled our on bags as were were parked in the garage across from the terminal. Guy's Burger Joint and the Red Frog Pub were big hits with our crowd. The water slides were enjoyed by everyone from "57 year old me" to the youngest 17 year old in our group. The pools were very crowded, so you simply needed to step into one of the many provided showers to cool off. If you can't adapt a little I suggest you don't go on any cruise in the middle of the Summer, when every ship is at or near full capacity. The shows were a mixed bag, a couple were really good a couple just average. The string trio playing in the Atrium was wonderful, and the solo guitar player that played around the ship was very impressive. I would give both an A+. We took one excursion through Carnival, a catamaran sailing from St. Thomas to St. John, Honeymoon Beach. This was a wonderful sail with a fantastic crew, I would recommend it to anyone. Now for a tip, in Grand Turk, we took a taxi to Bohio Dive Beach area. All beaches in Grand Turk are public, so don't bother with an excursion. There was a store just up the beach selling beer and such, nice walk, nice water. Understand that there are very little in the way of amenities at the beaches of Grand Turk. If you are not adventurous just stay at the beach beside the ship and enjoy the crowds. On a final note I have read some recent reviews of this ship and wondered who these people were and what ship they could possibly have gone on? Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but understand we had 14 people of various ages and the only complaint we could come up with was the one 17 year old had a hard time getting into the "18 and over only locations". Certainly not Carnivals fault. Did we cheat a few times? Of course! I sometimes think these people could not be happy with anything, or they are just trying to impress someone with how refined they believe themselves to be. Sorry for the rant, but we really enjoyed this cruise, even with the big crowds. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We had a great time, but there could /should have been more for the teen age group to do. For example there was a dodgeball tournament , but for adults. Kids ran around the ship a lot, unsupervised. There were several fights in the ... Read More
We had a great time, but there could /should have been more for the teen age group to do. For example there was a dodgeball tournament , but for adults. Kids ran around the ship a lot, unsupervised. There were several fights in the arcade that lasted long enough for my son to video and security knew nothing about it. There were tons if activities for adults and they were all great. The staff is excellent, very helpful, friendly and accommodating. The room was nice, clean and our steward Mudi, was great! At night, the room temp was warm and the air did not seem to be working at its fullest, but not terrible. Getting on and off was very easy for the cruise as well as for the excursions. Food was good and there was plenty of options and choices. Our cruise director marQ was awesome and heand many of the cruise staff learned and remembered many of the guests names. This made it very personal and fun as well. Excursions: amber cove- we did the horseback riding at Seahorse ranch and it was great. Horses are beautiful and Fausto, our guide was very informative on our way there. San Juan: the rainforest and Old SanJuan, very nice and interesting St. Thomas: snorkeling sea turtle cove, this was beautiful and we wish it would have lasted longer Grand Turks: the beach had a lot to do for everyone the water was beautiful. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
I traveled on this cruise with my (extended) family, including 2 children. We had a great time. The kids loved the buffet, and one enjoyed the kids' club and the sushi classes. I took the other on the "all access" tour--it ... Read More
I traveled on this cruise with my (extended) family, including 2 children. We had a great time. The kids loved the buffet, and one enjoyed the kids' club and the sushi classes. I took the other on the "all access" tour--it was expensive as heck, but I don't regret spending the money. The food at the buffet was good, especially the curries. The MDR did a decent lunch and an elaborate-looking buffet. My cabin was nice--the porthole window was great. My steward was attentive and nice--I actually ran into him "too" often because the facilities he needed were close by. He always seemed to be standing in the corridor when I went to my cabin. The shows were all wonderful, although the comedians were a 7 out of 10 at best. Labadee was fantastic. Maho Beach was theoretically very good, but that excursion didn't go terribly well for me in a few ways. All of the members of my party took issue with the safety video at muster, with one going so far as to address it with an officer. I really hope Royal does something about it. It's a waste of time AND doesn't impart the needed safety information. It fails in every way. Another member of my party was upset at being unable to book our group into dinner (MDR) a good 3 or 4 days in advance. Someone else went to Guest Services over it and got it fixed, leading to the first person being even more upset that it seemed to be about who you know or "who" is asking--in other words, why deny the first request and then have another crew member override it? People shouldn't have to go to Guest Services for a simple dinner reservation. Embarkation went fine. The transfer to and from the airport also went fine. I was on Symphony of the Seas not long before this one, and they were pretty indistinguishable. I'd be happy to sail on either one again if it fit my plans and needs. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise specifically because it had childcare service for our two year old toddler. We are a family of four with 2 kids a nine year old and the toddler. The itinerary was ok as we have been to the Caribbean many times but ... Read More
We chose this cruise specifically because it had childcare service for our two year old toddler. We are a family of four with 2 kids a nine year old and the toddler. The itinerary was ok as we have been to the Caribbean many times but not to Labadee and we’re eager to explore San Juan. The ship is beautiful and embarkation was a breeze. The ship is tastefully decorated and a welcome relief from the garish decor of the Carnival ships. There is lots to do and we took advantage of all of it - the pools, slides, carousel and the zip line. We chose a boardwalk view cabin to save on cost. The room was small but had good storage. The bathroom was small but adequate. The balcony is teensy. There was a partial ocean view. We did not partake in much of the entertainment but what we did see was top notch. The bars were all very good but beware of high drink prices - think $13 Mojitos. Basic beers are $8 plus the high tips just makes the drinks even more expensive. We did not buy the drink packages and our final tab confirms we did not drink enough to justify it. We like to stay in shape and the fitness center was well equipped but sometimes very crowded. There is access to a very nice jogging track. I like to use the sauna to detox and relax but there is none - except in the spa for a fee. :-( The food was hit or miss. I had high expectations with RCL but was frankly disappointed. The Windjammer was fine good choices and mostly tasty but the food in the main dining room consisted of over cooked seafood or grisly steaks. My wife, a vegetarian was lacking in choice as there we nearly none. Desserts were blah. Service was spotty as well. The cabin steward was ok but we received towel animals only two nights where on Carnival it’s every night. My kids get a kick out of it. In the main dining room we chose my time dining due to the lack of information on the babysitting service prior to sailing.. I didn’t realize My Time meant waiting 30-45 minutes for a table! All this while paying for child care. :-( Ports: LABADEE We loved Labadee so many activities and very nice. Wish we were provided a list of activities or a map beforehand we could have planned it better. The zip line looked real fun. SAN JUAN We didn’t go due to protesters in San Juan. i understand the reasons for safety sake, but no alternative ports offered as well as no credits. Not good customer care if you ask me. ST MARTIN We took an independent excursion to the beach it was just ok. The island is very dry right now and recovering from the hurricane. PROS: Our kids loved the ship my toddler especially loved the carousel. The camps and baby services were excellent. The pools and amenities were really good, lots to do. Entertainment was top notch. Good and varied bars. CONS: Average food especially in the MDR. High drink prices, and the TIPS. Oh my you are now paying $58 per cabin for a family of 4 PER DAY! Plus drink tips! Yikes. I also felt that RCL should have offered something for the loss of one port. We got nothing. Wait times in the MDR were ridiculous. Would I sail RCL again? Probably not, at least for a while. They charge a premium over the other lines such as Carnival and NCL, presumably for better food and service. But the gap is closed and I don’t see the need to spend the extra $$. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
The cruise was amazing. Food at Palo (brunch and dinner) were exceptional. Rely (brunch with champagne pairing) was incredible. Kids Club my kid was glued to it and constantly wanted to be there. Pirate Night was fun, and I realized that I ... Read More
The cruise was amazing. Food at Palo (brunch and dinner) were exceptional. Rely (brunch with champagne pairing) was incredible. Kids Club my kid was glued to it and constantly wanted to be there. Pirate Night was fun, and I realized that I could have enjoyed the fireworks from our veranda, but hey, it was fun to be with everyone. Excursions, we did National Parks at British Virgin Island Gordo, and walked Devil’s Beach and The Baths. This was amazing, water, felt great, the walk in the caves was very adventurous (climbing down steep rocks, at times using a rope to hold on to, or walking down steep stairs so be warned) and very fun. St. Thomas was a trip to Coral World which was very relaxing, and very interesting to learn about sea life, animals and coral. Castaway Cay was the worst experience I have ever had. I set out to do the 5K which I walked. Lots of water, and beautiful stuff to see. I met my family and noticed that the weather was getting very hot. We found some chairs under an umbrella and sat. My son swam in the water, and I am not sure what it is with the heat and moronic people, but obscenities started to happen in everyday conversation. After discussing it with the people that were using it, and receiving a “Sorry” we decided to move to another area. Really, why do you have to use that language in front of your kids and mine? Come on! Wife started to get really hot and headed back to the ship. My son and I stayed for about 20 minutes longer, and as we headed back to the ship a Coast Guard helicopter landed next to the ship. I found out later, that the Coast Guard was called in because someone was suffering from Heat Stroke. THAT IS HOW HOT IT IS. Just know if you go out on the island, there is nothing to do except be in the sun or the water. When in the water, its a little cooler, but not much. No air conditioning on the island, and the air is pretty still, not a lot of breezes. The food for Castaway Cay left a lot to be desired we had a burger (son didn’t even finish it), and chicken burger. Both of which were the worst part of the food we had on the ship. I did drink a lot of Powerade which made me feel a bit better, but didn’t make anything taste any better. My son and I headed back, got on the ship and my son and I rode the Aqua Duck 17 times in a row....AND IT WAS SO MUCH COOLER! The Stateroom Host was incredible. Our head waiter, waiter and assistant waiter were amazing. The food was fantastic, all in all, you have to do a Disney Cruise if you haven’t. You don’t have to do the excursions obviously, you can enjoy a movie, or show, but enjoy that cruise. It really makes you feel special! My family is currently trying to figure out where to go next and when we can do it. This was my very first cruise, and having heard about other cruise lines, I may be a bit snobby and only cruise with Disney! :) Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I went on a family reunion cruise with 11 of my family members with 3 rooms being balconies and the other three inside cabins. We picked the Breeze for the family vibe and the islands and it was a good trip but Carnival had its ups and ... Read More
I went on a family reunion cruise with 11 of my family members with 3 rooms being balconies and the other three inside cabins. We picked the Breeze for the family vibe and the islands and it was a good trip but Carnival had its ups and downs. Pros The food was very good. We especially liked the dinners in the hall and the specialty burger, bbq and tacos places. The buffet was perfectly acceptable but there could have been a few more to keep the lines down. Nobody got sick from the food so I consider that a good cruise. The drinks were tasty and we enjoyed a couple fish bowls at the Red Frog bar through out the cruise. Lots of booze and worth the money (especially if you go during the half price times). The photographers were excellent and there was a ton of different back drops and places to get our family pictures done. Photos were A+. The $5 onboard app made it very convenient to plan where people wanted to go which would have been a nightmare on past cruises. Cons The pools were terrible! I'm use to a central pool which was the focal point of the boat but on the Breeze you get two tiny pools and a water slide play area. Just way too small pools for the number of people on the ship. Lines - Lines - Lines are everywhere. The dining area is just a madhouse with kids and people everywhere. Just felt cramped and no organization which distracted from being able to relax. Getting around when everyone was on board was just crazy. And don't get me started on how packed the comedy club gets! I typically cruise on Royal and the people on Carnival were just uncouth. Slamming doors, kids running up an down the corridors at night - just a lack of manners compared to what I experienced on Royal. I know this ship is billed as the family boat but I'd not recommend it for anyone who has cruised before just due to the luke warm taste it left in my mouth. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
A little about us. Family of 5, grown kids ages 18,19,23. Been cruising for 25 years. Over 30 cruises. Generally like different aspects of Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian. To be more specific, enjoy the ship amenities of RCCL, we ... Read More
A little about us. Family of 5, grown kids ages 18,19,23. Been cruising for 25 years. Over 30 cruises. Generally like different aspects of Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian. To be more specific, enjoy the ship amenities of RCCL, we love the Haven experience on NCL and we have always thought Carnival had the best food and service. Unfortunately, this Carnival cruise did not meet with those expectations. I will comment on a few major areas. CABIN: Standard cabin. Basic size. Balcony slightly larger than other lines. Bathroom basic and no concerns. Problem was poor AC. As others have said on Carnival Board, the AC simply does not cool down the room. Furthermore, the standard heavy duvet makes for very warm conditions. Even though my wife does not like our bedroom as cold as I do, she complained of how hot the room was during the day and night. (Note: the duvet would have been great had this been a winter escape to the Rockies). Mattress also did not seem to have as much support as on previous ships. Pillows were older, inconsistent and offered limited cushion FOOD: Chef's Table was very good. A- grade. Superb service, variety of foods that we would not usually order including Quail and Veal. Was a little disappointed with the wine offering which was Layer Cake Cab. On RCCL, there are 5 different wines served usually with Caymus with tenderloin for last course. Cucina del Capitano: C grade. We had mediocre service. Food was OK. Better than dining room, but just OK. Slightly better than Olive Garden. Only $15 per person. But probably would not spend extra for this quality of food. Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse: A- grade. Great service. Food very good. Steak quality good....perhaps not to quality of Ruth's Chris or other national steakhouses, but definitely much better than Outback and Longhorn as others have commented. BIG HINT.....on the first night, they offer a free bottle of wine with dinner. Do not get this...instead take advantage of the 50% off any bottle deal. We enjoyed 2 bottles of Caymus at half price. And I would note that wine prices all of the ship were very reasonable and much better than RCCL. Caymus was priced at $90 per bottle....it is ~$130 on RCCL. So we had 2 bottles of our favorite wine for $90 on the first night. Main Dining Room: Service was good, although it seemed poorly organized. More importantly, the food quality was just not good. As stated in intro, we have always thought main dining room food on Carnival was much better than competitors. No longer the case. Plenty of tasty appetizer options, but some did not live up to expectations. On the other hand, there weren't that many dessert options. Melting Chocolate Cake is often the only good option. Entrees were so-so most of the time. Lunch Options: Awesome....Guy's burgers, Pizza, Mexican buffet, and BBQ. All awesome. ENTERTAINMENT: This is by far our biggest complaint. At a time when competitors are providing plenty of entertainment options including 90 minute Broadway shows, Carnival continues to offer the 40 minute song and dance deal with taped music and cruise ship dancers. 3 different shows. Same thing each time. Very similar to the shows of the 1990's before everyone else stepped up their game. The only good entertainment was the comedy venue which is larger and better than RCCL. Good performances. SO....at night, the only good options are the comedy club and the casino. Perhaps that is what Carnival is looking for. MISCELLANEOUS: We didn't really sense that most of the staff was happy. Service was adequate, but not usually friendly. CRUISE DIRECTOR continued to make announcements that were unnecessary. Average of 6 public announcements throughout the ship each day. Some were really poorly timed including a Wake up on Sea Day at 9:30 to tell us Shops are open. Excuse me.....folks are sleeping. Another notable message was to announce in cabins that there would be an emergency drill at 9am on a port day. Some people were not going to shore and were sleeping. There was no reason to wake folks up to tell them there was a drill going on. Loud younger teens running through the hallways from 11p-2a. No supervision and security would not answer the phone So, all in all, we will likely not travel with Carnival again. Carnival cruise prices are often a little lower than competitors. But that price difference is definitely seen in total experience. Food quality no longer superior and more importantly, entertainment options in evening are severely lacking. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Long lines everywhere. Forever to get drinks at some bars. Room steward MIA.. Room service Non existent. TRIED 4 times. Once food never showed up Once received COLD horrible food. Twice received message that room service unavailable..even ... Read More
Long lines everywhere. Forever to get drinks at some bars. Room steward MIA.. Room service Non existent. TRIED 4 times. Once food never showed up Once received COLD horrible food. Twice received message that room service unavailable..even though ordered during "open" hours. We will not be booking any further MEGA ships. We did the same things and had as much fun as we have on smaller less expensive ships. It's impossible for the crew and ship to keep up with that volume of people!! Staff are overworked and stressed out. Not all. There were some that were great. Putra and Mark at pool bar were great..even though Putra was in the aqua show in addition to bartending 12 hours at pool bar. He would leave do the show and come back to bartend. ???? Staff spread toooo thin!! We still had a fabulous cruise. Ports were amazing !! Too big is a thing!!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I had a great time and enjoyed being with my friends but there were pros and cons to the ship. I’ve been on six RCL cruises over the past 30 years so compared to my first cruise 30 years ago some things have gone downhill. My first ... Read More
I had a great time and enjoyed being with my friends but there were pros and cons to the ship. I’ve been on six RCL cruises over the past 30 years so compared to my first cruise 30 years ago some things have gone downhill. My first cruise years ago was amazing. Every bite of food was absolutely delicious. The ship was gorgeous and the guests were treated like kings and queens. The staff was overly friendly and accommodating and would practically knock you down to say hello with a big smile on their face. I understand that with over 6000 passengers it’s a different experience but even The Majesty of the Seas, that I went on several years ago, the quality of the food had gone down. Pros HOTS- The entertainment was amazing! I loved the ice skating shows and the comedians were great. I was so glad they celebrated the 4th of July with the National Anthem and 2000 balloons. The ship was beautiful, especially Central Park. Cons- The food- Some things were good . I enjoyed the seafood and desserts but the meat and chicken were not good . They basically had the same menu each night except for one or two entrees and one or two desserts would be different There was no midnight buffet with the beautiful ice sculptures. That used to be one of the highlights of a cruise. There was no where to sit inside to enjoy the ocean view. All the bars and public places were in the center of the ship with no views. They charge you for a lot of things that used to be included. Also, they add on high gratuities on everything. We have always tipped well but now they automatically make you tip. Probably because some people didn’t tip well. I think for families it’s a fun ship but if you are looking for something a little more upscale for couples another cruise line might be a better choice. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We took our adult kids and grand kids (19 in total) and chose this ship because we had done Oasis in the past and the kids liked it. Also, we live in central Florida so it was easy to get everyone to the ship. The Harmony was nothing ... Read More
We took our adult kids and grand kids (19 in total) and chose this ship because we had done Oasis in the past and the kids liked it. Also, we live in central Florida so it was easy to get everyone to the ship. The Harmony was nothing short of spectacular. We parked at Park Port Canaveral lot and got to the ship fairly early (noon) so check-in was a breeze. We were hesitant to do the buffet on embarkation day so we went to the Solarium buffet instead. It was much quieter and the food was fine. Dining: We had early dining for the group (2 tables of 10) and the only disappointment was that they have moved the dining to 5:00. That is very early, particularly on a port day. But we couldn't do my-time dining for a group of 19. The ages ranged from 5-up and all enjoyed the food immensely. We had 2 different waiters and asst. waiters and all were some of the best we have had on our 42 cruises. Nobody had a 'bad' meal any evening. Even the free steaks were quite good. Our teenaged grand kids are huge eaters and the waiters seemed to love trying to fill them up. We usually ate breakfast and lunch in the restaurant also and the food and service were great. We did have lunch at Jaimie's Italian in Central Park one day and it was fabulous. I highly recommend it. Ports: The revamped Coco Cay is beautiful with much better seating and more food options. Some of our group paid for the water park and were disappointed with the very long lines and crowds. They said that they would not do it again in the future. St. Thomas and St. Martin were simply standard Caribbean islands. Certainly nothing special. The kids all did water-related shore excursions and were happy with them. Entertainment: Here is where we had some disappointments. Usually we love the ice skating and aqua shows. The shows on the Harmony were terrible. They made no sense and were not well-choreographed. Neither show did a good job of showing off the talents of the young performers. Everyone leaving the Fine Line Aqua Show was saying 'what the heck was that all about?'. Really bad. 'Grease' was fine (singing, acting all ok) but we were surprised at the amount of sexual innuendo since we had 9 kids under age 18 there. The one bright spot was the group Mo5aic. We had seen them on the Oasis and they were fantastic. Activities: There seemed to be the standard activities and nobody seemed bored. We had good weather so the kids spent a lot of time on the water slides. We like to dance, though, and found there was basically no chance for ballroom/swing type of dancing. We were on the ship on the 4th of July and they did a great celebration. The running track was great as usual as was the gym. All the staff seemed happy and seemed to enjoy this ship. Complaints (gotta have a couple): This ship has the HOTTEST elevators we have ever experienced. No air conditioning and very crowded. Everyone was talking about it. Miserable when you were stopping at every floor. Prices of drinks. It used to be that drink prices were about half of what you would pay in a restaurant. Now they are more than you would pay. We paid $42 for a bottle of wine that we purchase regularly for $12. Our kids were glad that they had carried on wine and just had a glass in their room before dinner. Also, a glass of fresh orange juice at breakfast was $8. REALLY, $8?? Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I have been on a total of 5 cruises, this was my 2nd time on Royal Caribbean. This was by far the worst experience I have had. There are those experiences you look forward to once you finally make it on the ship. You hear people talk ... Read More
I have been on a total of 5 cruises, this was my 2nd time on Royal Caribbean. This was by far the worst experience I have had. There are those experiences you look forward to once you finally make it on the ship. You hear people talk about the giant party at the beginning as you sail away from the dock. You can't wait to see it for yourself, well my family and I where all ready for the sail away party but NOTHING no music or dancing on the top deck just tons of people confused. Apparently on this ship they try to crame 6500 people on deck 5 where you can't even move or see anything. Just imagine being in a small mall like setting, trying to watch a concert or show. With 6500 other people. No bigger them a basketball court. Having little kids with that many people is not safe. So we missed out on a lot of activities on that floor due to the safety of my children. And of you are interested in food at anywhere close to that time you are out of luck if you want to sit and eat as a family on your family cruise. The food was just ok nothing blew me out of the water. I have been on other cruise lines where the food was fantastic this was by far the worst food. Same thing over and over nothing different and the same all of the ship. You want the same burger you have 4 different places to get it but nothing different. The desserts were pathetic!! The pop machine where broken so you get flat 2 litters of Sprite to drink!! I mostly come on cruises for the food and energy you get from all the music and staff that make it fun. But I didn't get that energy till the last day on the ship. Kids things this was by far my most frustrating part of this cruise. If you say you are going to have face painting from 230-430 and someone gets there at 345 and they tell you sorry that your kid can't get it done because the line is too long is not ok!! This happened multiple times to use and not just on the face painting. It also happened on the moon light rockwall climbing which we got there an hour before it was supposed to close and was told no. If you tried to rock wall climb in the daytime your hands got burned so needless to say that was out. But once we walked back by the face painting booth to see all the kids with face paint and see different people at the end made me furious. They picked and chose who got to get the face painting done. Not a happy momma!! I also purchased the Deluxe Beverage package for my husband and I. I did this so I could order whatever I wanted and not worry about the bill at the end of the cruise. We that didn't work because I would get charged anyway even with my package. So I would have to take time out of my day to go down and sit in the line to talk to the guest service and explain what I ordered. One day while i was at guest service ( which i had to go to at least 5 times) I asked about the wrist bands you could purchase instead of your card. I was told they didn't have anymore which I thought was crazy because it was only the 1st full day of the cruise. He told me the inventory was gone. I am sorry were we not just docked so you could restock your inventory?!? Don't have something for certain guest and not all 6500 people. If I want to purchase something then I should be able to purchase it. And if I waited till maybe day 3 or 4 and they had sold out, I would have understood. But don't say you just don't have enough for everyone. That is crazy to me. Don't plan on using their app to message back and forth while on the ship. You spend more time fighting to keep it up on your phone and miss out on the messages you thought sent. The TV in your room was pointless!! Other cruise lines give you some type of free movies to watch and decent TV. Not on this ship! This ship you get to watch Duggie Hauser family matters and cricket! And the next day can watch the same episode again!! For a ship to not have a huge sporting event on somewhere in the ship is crazy!! On the same cruise line I have been talking about throughout this post they put the the world series games on over the pool so anyone who wanted to watch could and also had a pub in side that had it on aswell. Which means people with kids could still let the kids play while they watched the game. But you could watch Cricket anytime of the day. So as my mom was sick in bed the last 3 and half days she hated the TV! The kids splash pad was great except you had no room to move on the deck around it. The chairs with stools where on top of each other and if you had time to stand up and move you would trip on the one next to you. Another problem I had was this all inclusive?? What does that mean?? Because you had to pay 2.50 per bag of popcorn the side of a juice box! How is this all inclusive??? Other ships give you blankets as much popcorn as you want and a great movie!! The Icecream was so monitored you couldn't even make your own cone!! The kids always look forward to coming back from dinner and seeing what animal they made well we only received 3 out of 7 nights. My other cruise line we received 7 or 7 ! It is all about how your staffs energy reflex on to us as passengers! We really looked forward to this cruise because it was geared more towards kids then before. I will say of you have young kids this is not the ship for you!! Go on the Carnival you will have the time of your life and worth every penny. I do want to say that I had one great experience on this ship and that was our very last night our server Joseph and his right hand man made my girls laugh so hard and finally got to see what I was hoping for the whole cruise! They did magic tricks and even got to see the "pet" mouse!!! They truly made the last night special. I even had to head back early to make sure our luggage made it out by the door in time. He helped my husband carry all of our desserts from the hall back to our room!!! Thank you for making that one night special!! Needless to say I will most likely not go back on this ship while my kids are young. Thanks Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Best Family Vacation we could have asked for. 2 early 50s adults with 18 and 22 y/o. Had two rooms (not together - decided late in process to get the 18 and 22 a separate inside room - best decision ever.) We had room 9594 - with large ... Read More
Best Family Vacation we could have asked for. 2 early 50s adults with 18 and 22 y/o. Had two rooms (not together - decided late in process to get the 18 and 22 a separate inside room - best decision ever.) We had room 9594 - with large balcony. Food - we ate in MDR each night. Loved our waitstaff and was generally pleased with dinner options. The staff was very accommodating if our food wasn't exactly what we wanted. Breakfast and Lunch were mainly in the Windjammer or Solarium. LOVED Park Cafe in the morning - they had breakfast sandwiches/burritos - which broke the "buffet" style offerings. We had to change from My Time Dining to Second Session dining (b/c we made the room switch and ALL my reservations - dinner and shows were cancelled - DUMB way of doing it). But 2nd session worked great with our schedule. Stayed late at the pool or didn't have to rush when we were in port. Doors open at 7:45 and stay open until 8:15. Mini Bites was awesome if we wanted late snack to hold us until dinner. Room - Was awesome. We had balcony/ocean view. We had the larger balcony which gave us lots of room. Before dinner was heaven just sitting there watching the ocean go by. Our room steward was Ricardo - and he was a pleasure to work with. He even went out of his way for our kids room - b/c they were in the inside rooms and we couldn't find their steward. RC had them as one King bed and he called down and got it separated into 2 twin beds. Excursions - we hit a home run in both St. Thomas & St. Martin. CoCo Cay - we just went to beach, snorkeled on our own, visited the Oasis Pool, played in the Sand VB tournament, and ate at the Chill Island Grill. CHAIRS are everywhere. No need to worry about that. St. Thomas - we did the Champagne Snorkel Tour. TOP NOTCH! Staff was awesome, takes you to National Park on St. John - great snorkeling, ride back was super relaxing. A bit of traffic getting to and from so not much time to do anything else, but there are great little shops right at the dock, so easy to grab a few t-shirts before getting back on boat. St. Martin - we did the Rhino Rider tour. Again - excellent staff, FUN boats, they take you to a beach, let you snorkel for about 30 mins (snorkel are okay - nothing too exciting) and then you head back. Heading back they allow you to go rouge a little bit so was fun racing through the waters). After the excursion, the original bus driver had asked if anyone wanted to go to Maho Beach (were the planes fly over) and had a small bus ready to take us and another family over, leave us for a couple of hours and then came back to take us to the boat. We ate lunch and watched the planes. 2 hours there was too much time - but a fun experience. It is super crowded there. Ship - so much to do. We found the shows a little long and repetitive, but was glad we had made reservations. There were always seats for those that didn't make reservations, so don't stress on that part. The planned activities (i.e. - Pool VB, Belly Flop contest, Cannonball contest, etc. were a hoot and made our kids trip). The Bionic Bar was so fun...the drinks we made were hilarious and often tasted like cough syrup but is worth spending time there. Enjoyed Dazzles - was late to the talent show - but heard it was awesome. Casino seemed hopping. Didn't spend a lot of time there. And all the different little bars with music playing was very enjoyable. Really liked the Solarium when you wanted down time...soft jazz music played here (I read a complaint that there was no music here - but we had music every time I went in) Pools - pool for everyone. 2 middle pools were for everyone. 1 adult pool (16+ and life guards stick to that policy), 1 kiddie pool. And again - always found a chair. Sometimes not exactly where I wanted to be - but usually one would open and I could move. And lots of chairs in the shade too. (Never made any of the hot tubs - but SEVERAL on the pool deck) Drink Package - we did the Deluxe package with alcohol and felt like we got our money's worth. Always grabbed bottled waters on way to room. Great way to try new drinks, had wine at dinner, also includes milk shakes at Johnny Rockets...so a little of everything. Bartenders and Pool Runners were always around and never had to wait long. Check in/check out was a breeze. We did send our luggage down the night before and it was right where they said it would be. Customs looked like long line but went fast. What I would change: Bring back plastic straws (or at least give you that option) - and yes I understand the environmental aspect...but the paper straws fell apart before you could get a drink down. I bought a "special" cup that had lid and straw at CoCo Cay and poured my drinks in it all week. Highly advise. Photos - give more details on checking out your picture package. LAST NIGHT was disaster in this area. Pictures were supposed to all be picked by 11 PM. At 9 PM all the computers were going offline and people were getting frustrated. I think if they would let you look at them in your own room, this area would not get crazy. Make the store near Mini Bites - open at better times. If in port it was closed, and during sea day it was only open for 2 hours. Always crowded. And you might want to add a few more "phone" accessories. As one child needed ear phones and other charger - and no where to get either (that we found). All in all - GREAT vacation. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
This was the third multi generational family cruise for our family which included three staterooms for my family, my inlaws, and my sister in law and her family.. Perfect stateroom location on lido deck 10290, 10286, and 10282. Literally ... Read More
This was the third multi generational family cruise for our family which included three staterooms for my family, my inlaws, and my sister in law and her family.. Perfect stateroom location on lido deck 10290, 10286, and 10282. Literally could not get any closer to the lido deck if you tried! This was the second time I've stayed in a balcony on lido deck, (last time starboard, this time port) and it is so incredibly convenient in the mornings for breakfast, and all day on sea days. My father in law has mobility issues so that made this and even better location for him. This completed my "grand slam" on the Dream class and honestly, I'm done with Dream class for awhile. I do believe Breeze was the prettiest of the Dream class ships, the lido restaurant with its "trees" and "cabanas" was very nice. But we love ships. We cruise because of the ships first, ports second, and once you've done a ship three times, its time to move on. lol Again, cabin location GREAT, but 10290 was right behind where the windows at Blue Iguana jut out so you had a bit of a blockage looking forward. Not a big deal though. Food: same old same old. It's time for Carnival to update menu. The dining room menus have not changed and quite frankly there were some preparation issues. Our dining room waiter told us first night, "please be patient" and for the rest of the week we were the last table almost every night. The head waiter personally served our table all week so I believe someone was either let go, or quit, right before our cruise began. Amit was as attentive as he could be though and very friendly. Gede, the head waiter did what he could but it was just one of those things. We treated my inlaws to Chef's Table on this cruise for their anniversary. We did this last summer on the Dream and i do believe the food was prepared better on Dream. Of course we still loved Chef's Table. Entertainment: I thought there was no way we could top the Dream entertainment and i was 100% correct. Sadly, the entertainment on Breeze was VERY disappointing. I was talking up all the shows to our family, and nobody was impressed. I know that Dream has the best entertainment staff in the fleet, but Breeze was not even close. Schwartz. LOVED Schwartz! The first day, during muster I though, ugh this guy is boooooring, but he turned it up the next day during his morning show with Kimbo. Those two have such a chemistry and for the first time in 9 cruises I watched the morning show EVERY single day!!!! Love Schwartz and Kimbo!!!! New ebarkation at port canaveral super easy. We arrived at port by 1030am, we all had Faster to the Fun, got my father in law a wheel chair, and as soon as priority began boarding, we were on our way. On ship by about 10:50. Debarkation super easy too, we choose self debarkation. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Overcrowded cruise, pools wall to wall people, no way I would get in, had to wait in lines for food, water ice. Only one floor on the entire ship to get water, lemonade and tea. They give you tiny kid cups to drink from. Food was average. ... Read More
Overcrowded cruise, pools wall to wall people, no way I would get in, had to wait in lines for food, water ice. Only one floor on the entire ship to get water, lemonade and tea. They give you tiny kid cups to drink from. Food was average. The ship windows were dirty. Everything costs extra. If you buy a soda package for kids, they have go to the bar to get a soda, and carnival adds tips on everything. The staff were hard working, however this is clearly a mismanaged company with an owner who is only interested in making money. Don’t pay for the Wi-Fi, we added this and it only worked about a 20% of the time. Major overcrowding problems on this cruise. We’ve been on Disney and it was first class. The families we were with will never do Carnival again. Think twice before you book, I would not recommend. Posts were full of trash, Grand Turk beach and ocean had cups, trash about. Horses on island thin looked unhealthy. Other passengers told us they snorkeled to view trash and that Carnival had been fined for dumping trash in the ocean. Stateroom hot, we were told the temperature was within carnivals accepted range. They brought us fans. Halls often smelled of sewage. The owner of Carnival should go on this trip! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Great trip! We were worried about sailing on a mega ship but we were pleasantly surprised. The only time we had issues with crowds were during evening dinner hours. The elevators were extremely busy during this time but we had to wait ... Read More
Great trip! We were worried about sailing on a mega ship but we were pleasantly surprised. The only time we had issues with crowds were during evening dinner hours. The elevators were extremely busy during this time but we had to wait due to one member of our party using a scooter. We enjoyed the food in Windjammer, American Icon dining room, Small Bites, and Johnny Rockets. There were plenty of activities for children on board. My 6 year old had lots of fun on the abyss, mini-golf course, rock climbing wall, and carousel. He was disappointed that he was not talk enough for the water slides. Cocay was a fun stop for the kids. The water park was great and we also had fun snorkeling. We took a private handicapped accessible island tour on St. Thomas and a snorkeling excursion on St. Martin. Harmony of the Seas is a great ship and we can't wait until we can cruise again. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Hi, I have received so much help from posts on Cruise Critic, I thought I would pay it forward with my own review of our seven-day cruise last week on Harmony of the Seas. First, a little info about us. I was traveling with my DH, ... Read More
Hi, I have received so much help from posts on Cruise Critic, I thought I would pay it forward with my own review of our seven-day cruise last week on Harmony of the Seas. First, a little info about us. I was traveling with my DH, his three siblings and their families. There were 11 of us (six cabins) and we were all on Deck 9, forward. My DH and I have cruised many times on RC, but none of the other folks had ever been on a cruise. Since our nieces are in college and our nephews in high school, we didn’t experience Adventure Ocean or the teen programs. We all arrived in Cocoa Beach the afternoon before and stayed at the Holiday Inn-Cocoa Beach, next to the Publix. We hit a slight snafu when the hotel decided to arbitrarily change our hotel rate ($40-per-room increase). We had a copy of our confirmation with the rate displayed, but we were told that they could change the rate at check-in. The desk staff was not very friendly and we had to call corporate to get it resolved. Not a great way to start a vacation, but we vowed not to let it damper our trip. Because of the way we were treated and spoken to, I can’t recommend this hotel to anyone. The next morning, we took a private shuttle, booked via Larry’s Limos, and arrived at the terminal at 10 a.m. since I like to get to the ship early! In fact, we also used Larry’s Limos for our shuttle from MCO to the hotel the night before and I highly recommend them. Very fair rates, and they were very prompt and friendly! Security and check-in were a breeze and we were walking on the ship around 11 a.m. Of all the embarkation ports we have used, Port Canaveral was the easiest and quickest that I have experienced. They have really figured it out! We headed to the Windjammer for lunch and then spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the ship. Muster went very smoothly and we set sail promptly at 4:30 p.m. The rest of the review, I will break down in categories. CABINS We were all on Deck 9 forward, near the elevators. Two of us had balconies and had the divider removed. The other four were inside cabins directly across the hall. My sister-in-law had connecting cabins with her two sons. All of us commented that there was plenty of storage room. I was impressed with how the bathrooms were laid out. Plenty of storage and the shower seemed bigger than smaller ships we have sailed on. Because there was so much to do on the ship, we really didn’t spend much time there other than to sleep and dress. DINING We did not eat at any specialty restaurants, so I can’t comment on them. We had breakfast each morning in the Solarium Bistro and loved the quiet atmosphere versus the Windjammer. It’s the same food, but less people and a more relaxing area. We also had lunch either in the Solarium Bistro or Windjammer, based on what part of the ship we were at once we realized we were hungry! I realize food is very subjective, but we enjoyed the breakfast and lunch offerings at both locations. For dinner, we had early Traditional Dining in Silk. Our oldest niece has severe food allergies and the staff was wonderful in addressing her concerns and providing her meals each night without the worry of an allergic reaction. In fact, the waiters and entire staff provided top-notch service to all of us each night. The food was very good, and my only “criticism” is that I have noticed over the years that the offerings tend to repeat more than they used to. SHOWS We had reserved all the shows prior to sailing, so we had no problems seeing them. The Fine Line was fabulous! By far the best show at sea I have ever seen, especially considering we were on a moving ship as they were performing their high-flying acrobatics. The second aqua show later in the week was fun, if not a little “campy.” We also enjoyed Columbus and the ice show, 1887. Again, Columbus was a little “campy,” but it was funny and enjoyable. The comedians on board were also very good and provided a lot of entertainment. I did not see Grease, but those in our group who did attend really liked it. The only show none of us made it to was the Headliner Show. GENERAL ENTERTAINMENT We saw a few entertainers at Dazzles. Very good singers and the variety of music offered something for everyone. Some of us participated in karaoke and we only wished it was offered earlier than 11 p.m. so we could have participated more often. CASINO The casino was a pretty good size and we never really had trouble finding a seat at the blackjack table. Half of the casino allows smoking and the ventilation system worked pretty well in keeping the air pretty good. I wish they didn’t allow smoking at all, but it didn’t bother us too much. The wait staff was a little slow at times bringing drinks. OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES We were lucky to have fabulous weather the entire week, so the pools and whirlpools were always crowded. That being said, our group never had trouble finding lounge chairs by the pools and we never had to deal with “chair hogs.” The kids enjoyed the water slides as well. We also played mini-golf and table tennis. None of us dared to try the flow riders, but enjoyed watching those who did. A couple of us experienced the Abyss and zip-line and enjoyed those as well. COCO CAY Since my husband and I aren’t really “beach people,” we decided to stay on the ship and explore. The rest of our family spent the day there and really enjoyed swimming and hanging out at Chill Island. They all said they would love to go back again. They did not use the water park or other “paid” options. ST. THOMAS We did not book an excursion, but took a taxi into Charlotte Amalie and went shopping for jewelry and other souvenirs. All the taxis have specific rates posted based on where you want to go, so no one needs to negotiate or worry about being taken advantage of. After shopping, we took another taxi from downtown to Magens Bay. We took a wild ride over the mountains to see this beautiful beach. The roads are very narrow and the locals seem to have no fear when navigating them! We really enjoyed Magens Bay before heading back to the ship. Our taxi driver also stopped at a couple of lookout points for us to take pictures. All in all, we all enjoyed St. Thomas. ST. MAARTEN This was my first time back to St. Maarten since the hurricane and you can still see restoration projects in process. Our group took the ship’s excursion to Maho Beach. Many in our family are aerospace enthusiasts, so we really enjoyed spending the day watching the planes land. This really isn’t a swimming beach (there was noticeably less sand than our previous visit before the hurricane), but our nieces and nephews did take a dip in the water. The adjacent restaurant, Sunset Beach, offers a great outdoor space to sit and have lunch while watching the planes land. We all enjoyed having a Guavaberry Daiquiri with our meal. The food was excellent and plentiful as well. Typically, I am not a big fan of large groups on a tour. However, this time, it worked well since we were only going to one location and no one on the bus was interested in stopping for optional photo ops or stopping in downtown for shopping. PORT CANAVERAL I have cruised out of many different ports over the years and this was by far the best experience I have had with a port. From baggage handling to check-in to customs and ground transportation, it was such a smooth experience. I look forward to many more cruises out of Port Canaveral! GENERAL OBSERVATIONS We booked this specific cruise because we knew Harmony would offer something for everyone. Harmony is a beautiful ship and in great shape! It was so smooth, it didn't feel like you were on a ship. Before the cruise, I was concerned about potential crowding problems. These concerns were unfounded as the layout of the ship and “neighborhoods” really spread folks around. The only time I really noticed the crowds was when the shows let out and at lunch at the Windjammer. Almost everyone on the ship seemed to be having fun and we only observed a couple of people who weren’t in the best of moods. This was a fabulous vacation for our entire family and are thrilled that our “cruise newbies” really loved the cruising experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Sailing on the Harmony is like sailing on a mini-City. There’s always something to do and always something new to explore. Embarkation- well-organized. The parking lot is a little crazy, but once you’re out of your car it’s ... Read More
Sailing on the Harmony is like sailing on a mini-City. There’s always something to do and always something new to explore. Embarkation- well-organized. The parking lot is a little crazy, but once you’re out of your car it’s smooth sailing to the ship. Cabin- the cabin is a cabin. Go for the balcony room. There are inside balconies that overlook the central area of the ship, but the outside balconies offer much more privacy. Luggage fits nicely under the bed and out of the way. Closets and drawers offer more space than I expected. Our attendant was outstanding. Fitness- The fitness center is quite large. Many cardio machines and many weight machines. Free weight area could use an upgrade. The running track is extremely nice (although it has only one running and one walking lane). I ran 4-5 miles every day. My only complaint here is that there is no free sauna and steam room. No excuse for that. Outdoor activities- the Solarium is the quiet place to hide out! Designed for 16+ guests, it offers plentiful seating, a bistro, and several hot tubs. It would be nice if there were a pool here, but it’s a minor drawback. The main pool deck is pretty routine with salt and fresh water pools. The biggest problem here is that no ship with 6500 passengers is ever going to have enough pool space for sea days. It’s just super-crowded. Other activities include water slides (OK), zipline (pretty lame), rock climbing (definitely fun), flow rider (super fun), scuba lessons in the pool (we didn’t try that), and ice skating (my family enjoyed it but each session is only 20 minutes and the ice gets pretty rough). I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but you get the idea - LOTS of stuff to do. Entertainment- our sailing offered some of the best entertainment I’ve encountered on a cruise. You have to be early to get a good seat and be sure to reserve a seat online before the cruise. Tip for first time cruisers - if you go to nothing else, go to the Love and Marriage game show. It’s a must. WiFi- They advertise the fastest internet on the Seas. Fastest speed test I ran was 3.76 down/2.01 up. It was also a little spotty and downright awful at times. It’s the most overpriced choice on the ship, but they know people will still buy it. At least you can stream shows and the picture is decent. Main Dining Room- We ate in the American Icon for My Time Dining. They were totally disorganized the first few nights. The lines to get in looked like Wal-Mart lines for Black Friday. It got better as the week went on. We ate there 6 nights with 3 different wait staffs. Service was good only twice. The menu was pretty repetitive and I thought the food was rather bland. My family’s favorites were the spaghetti (offered 3 nights), chicken bread (offered most nights), and chicken parmigiana (offered only once). The biggest disappointments were the turkey and the ahi tuna. Desserts were very ordinary. On the bright side, breakfast in the American Icon was very very good. The offer a buffet as well as a la carte dining. I highly recommend the American Icon for breakfast - but check the hours. Windjammer- the main cafeteria gets pretty crowded, so seating can be a problem. Lots of variety in the food and, if you don’t like something, just get something else. Upgraded dining- with tons of free food available every moment of the day, we’ve never felt the need to pay in one of the specialty restaurants, but on this trip we had vouchers for one lunch and one dinner. For lunch we tried the Mexican restaurant on the Boardwalk. My wife thought the guacamole was the best she’d ever tasted. Otherwise, nothing special. For dinner, we visited Chop’s Grille. The steaks were very good and the sides were a little better than what is available in the main dining room. Desserts were very good - definitely better than the main dining room. It’s also much quieter. Overall, Chop’s Grille is a nice choice if you don’t mind spending a lot of extra money. My family won’t be. Best other choices- Solarium for breakfast. Park Cafe in Central Park, and Sorrento’s Pizza all day long. Those 3 are always good. Cleanliness- the crew do an amazing job. The ship is very well maintained. Route- the Eastern Caribbean isn’t a very good route. Our cruise had 3 stops and, while RCs waterpark at CocoCay is fun, none of the ports are the kind you’ll remember the rest of your life. While I would gladly sail on the Harmony again, I would never sail this route again. Excursions- CocoCay was fun. We spent the extra money for the water slide area and it was worth it. On St. Thomas we chose the BOSS undersea adventure. You get 30 minutes to snorkel and 30 minutes on your underwater jet ski-like rider. It was a fun day although there weren’t as many fish to see as I expected. We did the horseback ride on St. Maarten. It was maybe a 45 minute walk along the coast with a short plunge into the water. Maybe a little boring for most, but we liked it. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Trip details: This was our third cruise on a Carnival Fantasy-class ship and we will likely do it again. Despite their age, Carnival’s refurbishment program has done a good job at maintaining and updating these vessels. Having done ... Read More
Trip details: This was our third cruise on a Carnival Fantasy-class ship and we will likely do it again. Despite their age, Carnival’s refurbishment program has done a good job at maintaining and updating these vessels. Having done our pre-cruise homework, we knew exactly what to expect and were not surprised by anything. Getting to the port terminal: We stayed at the Residence Inn by Marriott Cape Canaveral Cocoa Beach the night before sailing, which is about one-mile from the cruise terminal. Thus getting to the terminal was a breeze. Signage at the Port Canaveral terminal is excellent in directing you to your ship, luggage drop-off and parking – traffic was very light at 11:00 AM. Embarkation: We were dropped off in the covered luggage area at 11:06 AM and drug our bags up a short ramp (100 feet away) into the terminal facility. We were immediately greeted and directed to an empty security line. After clearing security, we were likewise directed to a check-in station with no line. Our documents were scanned and Carnival pulled our photos from our embedded passport RFID – no photos to take. We were then directed to the waiting area and found seats proximately adjacent to the boarding gate. There were several hundred guests already waiting and Platinum/FTTF boarding was underway. With an 11:30 – 12:00 check-in appointment, and boarding group A01, they called us to board at 11:26 AM. 20 minutes from arriving to boarding – UNBELIEVABLE! Needless to say, embarkation was the best we have ever experienced for any ship at any port. FTTF would have been a complete waste of money for this cruise given the ease of access at Port Canaveral and both of our Ports of Call. Settling-in: Once onboard, we found seats in an air-conditioned area near Blue Iguana/Guy’s Burgers and enjoyed our leisurely Mexican food lunch. Lines were short to non-existent and food was good/plentiful. After lunch we casually strolled around the atrium decks and ended up next to the Coffee Shop on Deck 9, where comfortable seating was plentiful. Cabins were available at 1:30 PM as advertised and we were fully moved in prior to the obligatory safety briefing. Underway: We were underway on time and all of the cruise was so smooth (typically Beaufort 4) that it was hard to know you were moving at 19+ knots unless you were up on an open deck. Elation was the first cruise ship to be equipped with an Azipod propulsion system. The pods give Elation better maneuverability compared with her sister ships. Our course was direct to Amber Cove and Grand Turk, making each right on time. The weather was excellent and rain virtually non-existent; we had headwinds heading south and quartering tailwinds returning. One should be so lucky every cruise. Port & shore excursion reviews: Our first port was Amber Cove, DR. The 25 acre port complex developed by Carnival is secure and quite comfortable. We did not plan an outside excursion, opting to stay in the Amber Cove Aqua Zone, with swim-up bar and lazy river. Being one of the first to disembark, we found loungers in the shade of a palm tree. Umbrellas were available to rent for $20, but if you are early, you can find shaded seating. There is the usual port shopping, but the nice thing is there are no ‘locals’ trying to get you to but their T-shirts or take a tour to see their cousin’s chicken farm. We were the only ship in Grand Turk on the day we ported there and thus it did not feel crowded. The Grand Turk Cruise Center is a world-class, beach front cruise facility nestled among nearly 18 acres of landscaped grounds. The beaches are public, and the clamshells, beach chairs and umbrellas at the Grand Turk cruise center are free to use, so a beach tour, to us, seemed superfluous. Following the guidance of past visitors, upon entering the center, we went to the beach on the right and had our choice of clamshells in which to relax. The water was semi cloudy from swirling sand, but you could still see a few fish and swimming was easy. Hint: Get off the ship early for best seating and wear water-shoes at the beach. Food: We selected early dining and had the same table-for-two for the full cruise. Because we did our homework, we knew what the Main Dining Room (MDR) would offer and were again not surprised. There was always an entrée we wanted and multiple appetizers. Staff were OK, but not top-shelf. A few mistakes were made in our orders, but always corrected. Hint: About two weeks before you cruise, send an email to the Maître’d with any seating requests. As to Blue Iguana and Guy’s Burgers, the food was good, but be ready for lines at peak times that can move a bit slow. We timed our visits to be while others were ashore when lines were short. Tiffany’s is a small buffet, but the deli toward the back was quite efficient. Chris Anne (from St. Lucia) was wonderful at the coffee shop and we visited her often for iced tea and cappuccino. Entertainment: The stage shows were disappointing and we elected not to attend the last one. The comedians were a bit repetitive and the late shows laced with lots of unnecessary profanity. Because we have enjoyed the dueling pianos on NCL we hoped that Duke’s Piano Bar would offer something similar. Regrettably, it is not scheduled to open until 10:00 PM and even by 11:00 PM, we never saw a pianist in the bar. I think he missed the cruise. The Elation has a cute mini-golf course up on Deck 14, but was closed for high wind on our southern sailing. When we found it open, it was typically busy. There is a club and ball rack as you enter, but it was always empty. We came to learn that you had to check these out at the towel station on the Lido deck. Final Notes: One of the Atrium elevators was non-functional for the entirety of our cruise. The other had to be repaired mid-cruise. This was a minor inconvenience as there are forward elevators nearby. Finally, we had a pool towel fiasco as we were preparing to disembark. Upon boarding, our room steward provided two pool/beach towels. We turned in the dirty ones to him after Amber Cove, but only got one clean towel back. We borrowed two from the pool for Grand Turk and informed her of the situation. Again our steward collected the dirty towels upon our return. Minutes before disembarking, I got an alert from my bank that Carnival was charging us $44 for two missing towels. No one on the ship had bothered to inquire of us about the towels; just billed us minutes before leaving. It took 45 minutes with Guest Services to challenge this charge, who refused to issue an immediate credit. It took a call to my bank from Guest Services to dispute the charge, where they finally relented and agreed to take it off my final bill. Lesson to the wise – review your account right up to the final minutes on-board lest you get stung with an improper charge as you leave. Read Less

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