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navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 10:52 PM

Carnival Freedom 6 Day Review with Pictures 01/22/2012
Good evening! Just returned from our cruise on the Carnival Freedom yesterday and thought I would start the review while everything is fresh in my mind.

A little background information:

This cruise was to celebrate mine and my husband's 2 year anniversary. I'm 25 and my DH is 28. We're from Tallahassee, FL. This was our 4 cruise on Carnival. We have previously sailed on the Celebration, Dream, and Inspiration. The only port on this cruise that we previously visited was Grand Cayman.

This is going to be a pretty long and detailed review with tons of pictures (we took over 1000 this trip). I also have plenty of food porn to share. I kept all the Fun Times, so please let me know if you have any questions. I will try to upload them at the end of the review. Please be patient with me as these reviews can take a while. Feel free to ask any questions you may have and I will answer them as best as I can. Enjoy!

Jimmy Geegitz January 29th, 2012 10:55 PM

Looking forward to your review. Thanks for posting!!

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:03 PM

I know some people don't like to read long reviews, so before I start, I'll post my general thoughts and cliff notes.

Overall Cruise: Great! There were some issues, but nothing that we let ruin our cruise.

Overall Thoughts on the Ship: The layout took a little while to get used to as it was different than any other class we have ever sailed on, but once we got the hang of it, we loved it!

The decor was very muted compared to most Carnival ships and I'd have to say it wasn't one of my favorites. I don't cruise for decor though, so this wasn't a big deal.

Loved the addition of Fish and Chips to the Conquest class and it's nice to have additional seating area for the buffet. We ate up there whenever we had a meal on the Lido deck.

Overall Thoughts on Food and Dining: I'm not such a fan of the new menues. All the food that I ate was delicious, but there were some nights when I had trouble finding something I liked on the menu to order. It seems like they've moved all of my favorite foods onto the same nights.

Most days we didn't like the offerings on the main buffet in the lido so we ate at one of the individual stations. There are so many choices though that you can always find something on lido to eat.

Overall Thoughts on Entertainment: Both of the shows we went to were great! Ticket to Ride was by far the best show I've ever seen on a Carnival ship.

The entertainment staff had a lot of activities to participate in and we always had something fun to do. Brad, the cruise director, was very funny.

boaterette January 29th, 2012 11:12 PM

I am looking forward to your review. Is it done yet?:D

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:12 PM

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Since we live in Florida, we always drive to our ports. Normally we book cruises that leave on Saturday, so we have to leave immediately after work on Friday to drive to our hotel.

This time though, the cruise left on a Sunday, so we had all day Saturday to get to our destination. Made it so much less stressful.

We finished packing the night before and put some of the suitcases in the car so we didn't have to worry about them in the morning. We got up at 6am and grabbed breakfast from McDonalds. We finished packing up the car, grabbed the dog, and headed for the boarders. We dropped the dog off and headed on our way.

Since we had the entire day to travel, we decided to head down to the Orlando area for a visit with my parents. We stayed there for a couple hours before heading the rest of the way.

We were staying with my grandparents in Stuart, FL instead of worrying about a hotel. We drove an hour and a half from my parents to my grandparents and arrived in Stuart around 6:30pm.

After dinner, a quick stop at Walmart for some batteries, and a shower, we were in bed, ready to head to the cruise port in the morning.

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:31 PM

Sunday, January 22, 2012

I woke up at 6am ready to go, but everyone else was still sleeping. I hate sleeping the night before a cruise because I'm always so antsy.

Finally, everyone woke up at 7am and we got breakfast from this delicious bagel restaurant down the street. The name of it was Bagel Break. They had the most delicious cinnamon sugar bagel though.

My grandparents were driving us to the port so that we didn't have to pay for parking. It's an hour and a half drive from Stuart to Ft. Lauderdale. We printed off directions from Map Quest and headed on our way.

While driving down I-95, I glanced over and got my first glimpse of the cruise port.

Yelling about a whale tail in a car with two non-cruisers gets you some really strange looks...

While looking for our exit, we passed the exit that said Port Everglades. That wasn't the exit Map Quest told us to get off on, so we just kept going. Finally, we got to our exit. The Map Quest directions were great until they told us to turn right onto Cordova Rd. We turned right where Cordova Rd. should have been and it drove us right into a Publix shopping center. I ran into Publix and asked for directions and the told us to keep driving down 17th and turn right right before the bridge at a Walgreens and we would drive right into the port. So, be weary if you're using Map Quest directions because they're not accurate.

When we arrived at the port, security asked to see identification for every passenger in the car. Security directed us to terminal 19 and we were on our way.

Then I saw our home for the next 6 days!

We made the turn towards terminal 19, but it was clearly marked so we had to keep stopping and asking for directions. Finally, we found where we were to get dropped off at. It was around 10:30am. We said goodbye to my grandparents and went on a search for the porters. Got the normal tip talk from the porters, gave them a couple dollars, and headed to security.

There was no line to get into the terminal. The security guy asked for our passport and boarding pass. He said that they don't normally start boarding until about 11:30am, so we'd be waiting for a little while. We didn't mind.

We went through the security scanners and then headed to a line to check in. There were only about 5 people in front of us. We checked in and were handed zone 5. We did not have to do a health questionnaire. They asked if we had had any flu symptoms within the past 2 days and that was it.

We took a seat and waited for them to finish debarking the previous passengers. There was a lady in the terminal entertaining everyone while they waited. She did some Carnival trivia and then started singing and dancing. A passenger who was waiting pulled out an accordion and started playing along with her.

Finally, around 11:30am, they called our zone number. We took our pictures and then headed onboard!

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:52 PM

First thing we did when we boarded was head up to the Lido deck for lunch. Since we were one of the first groups on the ship, it wasn't crowded at all. We went up to the Fish and Chips area and grabbed a table. I sat with the luggage while DH went to get his lunch.

DH ended up getting Mongolian (this was a trend on the Inspiration as well as our Freedom cruise) and I decided to try the Fish and Chips. Both were very good. The fish was a little too greasy for my liking, but still yummy.

We then grabbed a few desserts to share. We got some Dulce de Leche cheesecake, Banana gateau, and Apple Crumble.

After lunch, we walked around the ship and took pictures until rooms were ready.

Since you can only do 6 pictures per post, the next few posts will all be pictures of the ship.

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:55 PM

Habana Lounge (used to be the cigar bar, but it is non-smoking now)

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:57 PM

Victoriana Theatre

navybaby1113 January 29th, 2012 11:59 PM

Trophy Case -- This is located outside the Victoriana Theatre

Viennese Cafe

Club O2

Sushi Bar


70's Disco

navybaby1113 January 30th, 2012 12:02 AM

Bar Neouvea

Scott's Piano Bar

Some other lounge that I never saw anything held in

Internet Cafe -- Located in the Habana Lounge

Chic Dining Room

navybaby1113 January 30th, 2012 12:05 AM

Posh Dining Room

gapearl January 30th, 2012 12:10 AM

Awesome review so far! I skimmed through some of your pictures on Facebook but didn't get through them all since I had to leave for work. Gotta go leave some more comments on those. Looking forward to reading more! I'm reminiscing on my Freedom cruise from 2 years ago....... ;)

navybaby1113 January 30th, 2012 12:25 AM

We headed down to deck 2 around 1:25pm to go to our rooms. The doors were still shut. Two older ladies came down and walked straight through the doors like they owned the place. I hate when people don't think the rules apply to them. The doors opened up at 1:30pm and we headed to our room.

I did my research before the cruise and noticed that room 2470 was a lot larger than a normal oceanview. We walked in and it was huge! It was probably close to the size of a suite, plus it had two windows.

Continued in the next post...

navybaby1113 January 30th, 2012 12:29 AM

The room was in the very aft of the ship, so we expected to feel vibration and movement. You could definitely feel the thrusters when entering and leaving port. We had a couple nights where the seas were a little rough and you could definitely feel it more in our room than anywhere else on the ship.

Even though there was a lot of noise and movement, I would book the room again. It was a huge and we loved the extra space.

mainescout January 30th, 2012 07:42 AM

Thank you so much for your review so far. We are on the Freedom in less than three weeks. I am getting so excited reading and looking at your photos.

Did you happen to snap copies of the daily menus? Finding menus for the 6 day cruise is next to impossible.

Your room sure was good sized.

Looking forward to reading more as you post.

loveJake January 30th, 2012 07:52 AM

[quote=navybaby1113;32198124]I know some people don't like to read long reviews, so before I start, I'll post my general thoughts and cliff notes.

Overall Thoughts on Entertainment: Both of the shows we went to were great! Ticket to Ride was by far the best show I've ever seen on a Carnival ship.

On the same cruise and I thought Ticket to ride was the worst show I had ever seen, that girl could not sing.

gelo7 January 30th, 2012 07:57 AM

Nice start.

navybaby1113 January 30th, 2012 11:06 AM


Originally Posted by mainescout (Post 32200469)
Thank you so much for your review so far. We are on the Freedom in less than three weeks. I am getting so excited reading and looking at your photos.

Did you happen to snap copies of the daily menus? Finding menus for the 6 day cruise is next to impossible.

Your room sure was good sized.

Looking forward to reading more as you post.

I didn't snap pictures, but I'll look on Zydeco Cruiser's website and see if I can find which ones we had every day. I'll post them with the pictures from dinner every night. Hope that helps!

Poitiers January 30th, 2012 12:43 PM

Hi Navybaby 1113;

First, are you by chance a Navy Brat (sorry, I know Navy kids are called something different, but can't remember what!). I ask cause I'm an AF Brat, and proud of it, although certainly a whole generation older than you!

But on to my real question - is there someplace other than here in roll calls I can access all your photos of the Freedom? I ask because in celebration of my husband's 70th birthday, we're taking our three grown children, our daughter-in-law and our three grandchildren on the Freedom. We're unfortunately not doing the same itinerary you were on, so I can't ask for help about the ports. We'll be stopping in Grand Turk, La Romano in the Dominican Republic, Caracao and Aruba.

But my grndkids are 10, 13 and 15, and I'd like to share your ship photos with them. Neither they nor their parents have ever cruised before, and I think seeing photos of the ship might be of interest to all of them.

I know the kids are big into Facebook. I have an account too, but seldom go to it. However, I certainly could go to see your photos, and maybe could direct the kids there to see them too. Although I guess we have to be 'friends' to do this.

At any rate, since I'm only on the roll call for the 3/10/12 sailing of the Freedom, would you email me at my regular email? It's [email protected]

Thanks, Kathi

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