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Found 351 results

  1. Any recent cruisers can tell me what movies they were showing at the Dive in Movies or at the IMAX?
  2. So I am booked on a havana cabana on the Horizon for the week of 03/17. Payment is due Jan 1st and now I am worried spring break may not be the best time to go. Any advice?
  3. Looking to book flights what time has the Horizon been typically getting back to Miami?
  4. Carnival has added new balconys on deck 2 of the Horizon, in family harbour area. They are aft extended balconys ( these are not on Vista) I am lucky enough i suppose, to have them booked for a B2B in January 2019 Question, if you look at the deck plans, the balcony for rooms 2497 and 2482 are HUGE which happen to be both rooms we have 2497 first week and 2482 second week... same room not available for both ( wonder if i could find the person who has either booked and say would you like to switch up for the exact mirror room so we dont have to change? haha) anyway.. my question, on the deck plans both these balconys show something, not sure what, almost like a staircase /////// anyone know what this actually is, here is link to deck plan https://www.carnival.com/cruise-ships/carnival-horizon.aspx#deck-plans thanks in advance
  5. Well we did it...we booked a Havana Cabana and now my husband wants every cruise to be in a Havana room. It is AMAZING! Just off the 6 day cruise out of Miami yesterday. We were on a ship with 4,000+ and felt like we were on a ship of 100. Obviously we will not be cruising in Havana every time since currently only Vista and Horizon have that option but what an amazing experience. From the room, to the walkout balcony to the hot tubs/pool to the Havana bar it was awesome!
  6. First and foremost, I posted a few weeks ago if I should pay $800 to upgrade to the Havana area. I think most people thought I was nuts, but wow. The Havana area was our entire vacation. Best $800 I've ever spent! I truly don't know if we'll be able to cruise in the future on a ship that doesn't have this area. It was that good. I attached a picture I took of the sunset from the Havana area. The good: Havana! The bartenders and bar staff made the cruise. Best bar staff I've ever encountered. They were amazing and just made our vacation so much better. The Havana pool is a bit small, but was never full. The hot tubs were huge! Almost as big as the pool! They could have been hotter, but the staff did increase the temperature every time it was asked. Everyone in this area was just SO NICE! Best passengers we've ever cruised with. Pig and Anchor was great. It was the best pay restaurant IMO. And half the price of the Steakhouse or Teppanyaki. We ended up eating at Pig and Anchor for 3 out of the 6 nights. I really liked the decor and didn't miss the glass elevators at all. I'm a little bit confused now by everyone saying how much they didn't care for it. Carnival has finally entered the modern times and doesn't look like a floating Atlantic City casino. The elevators also were great. They were a bit slow at times, but so much more efficient. I'd love it if every hotel or big venue goes to this type of elevator. We didn't spend too much time up there, but we liked the Dr. Seuss splash pad and water slides. The water was warm and they were fun. Also embarkation! We just walked right on. We didn't have anything special and I would have been pissed if I paid for FTTF. I didn't hear one person who said they waited in line to board at all. Still happily shocked at how quickly the process went. Debarkation also was easy peasy. The average: The food. We only went to the dining room the first night. It just wasn't that good. Carnival's schtick of making you pay for better food definitely worked on us. The breakfast was the best breakfast at sea I've ever had. Lunch was pretty good too. I"m not a buffet person, and typically dislike all cruise food. However, between the Great Wok, Pig and Anchor, and Cucina for lunch, we did well. The sea day brunch is also still amazing. We did the Sky Ride. It was fun, but not worth waiting in a long line for. We went in port and didn't wait. I would have been disappointed if we waited more than 10 min for it. I did enjoy Guys and was surprised I did, I was not expecting to like it. Blue Iguana was fine too. The bad: The Steakhouse. I am honestly really disappointed. Before this cruise, I was team 'the steakhouse is the best meal ever and well worth the money!". Now I'm like 'ehhhh.....' Every course we had from appetizer to dessert was just...fine? Nowhere near worth the money we spent on it. My free filet at the sea day brunch well surpassed my filet mignon from the steakhouse. We also didn't love Teppanyaki. It was also just okay. Not worth the money at all. Pig and Anchor is literally half the price on average of these other two restaurants and so much better. Our Havana interior room was also just too small. There wasn't the standard interior couch or dresser. We had to basically live out of our suitcases under the bed for the week. Please note that although I greatly disliked this, my husband thinks I'm overreacting and he had no issue with it at all 🙂 Last note that has left such a sour taste in my mouth is how many people we saw removing tips. I knew from here that it was thing, but not to the extent it was. The moved the line to the Havana bar because the grand atrium couldn't handle all of the people. People were waiting 2 hours in line to remove them. It was insane and ridiculous to me. I thought it was like 20 people per cruise, not 1/4 of the ship! I wish Carnival would just remove them all together and just increase the cruise fare the $150 it cost. Any questions? Just ask!
  7. I am just wondering which games on the Horizon sports desk require a fee of some sort. For instance, I am sure that mini golf would be free as it is on most, if not all ships, but what about pool etc.
  8. If you book a Havana Cabana due you get a early on board
  9. We haven't sailed Carnival in awhile and noticed that there is now an arrival time to choose. We are platinum, sailing in a spa suite on Carnival Horizon out of Miami. According to our travel agent, we can show up at the port anytime we want to. Does anyone have any recent experience with this? Thanks for any information!
  10. EMBARKATION Arrival at the Port/terminal facilities: Grade B. We arrived about 1030 am after taking a free rental car shuttle from the port (we drove from our home that morning in a rental). The Port itself is very busy but once inside the terminal, the new Carnival check-in process where they scan your passport upon entering the terminal and your boarding pass is your “room key” until picking up your permanent key outside your cabin is slick and flawless. My 2 bottles of wine and 2 cases of Pepsi sailed through without any problem and no corkage fee on the wine! We waited in the priority area which had a cooler of lemonade. We began boarding about 1130 which was quick and easy. There are vending machines in the terminal inside the secure area that are reasonable (snacks $1.25 and sodas $2) so you can take your drink / snacks on board. THE SHIP Overall; Grade A. The ship itself is nearly new, easy to navigate, and the color scheme and decor are neutral earth tones with a modern feel. Some of the lines can get long during peak times at some of the food areas (pig and anchor, blue iguana, pasta bar, Mongolian, and deli), but overall passenger flow was good. The crew was friendly and professional. Some specific comments: CABINS: Grade B. We had an inside cabin on deck 1 (we booked three days prior with only two cabins left). I don't think we have ever been on that low of a deck which wasn't bad since all the activities are on decks 3-5 (except lido on deck 10), and it was very quiet. The one downside being on the lowest deck fwd was a frequent shudder as if the bow hit a large wave Rooms were large, the shower worked well, the AC system worked well, and beds were very comfortable, and there was plenty of storage space. Note the room service default must be no evening turn-down service. We've always been asked on past carnival ships if we wanted evening turn down service which we always decline, so the fact it wasn't offered was no big deal. We also had a problem getting our funtimes delivered each evening which we have never experienced--on 3 of the 7 nights, it was never delivered and only arrived at various times the next morning. I began to have a theory that either they put all the new room stewards, or possibly those on probation, on deck one where all the “low rent” cruise passengers are cabined! POWER OUTLETS Grade C:. There are two 110 outlets, one european style outlet and two USB ports all above the desk. Surprisingly for a new ship there are no USB ports near the bed(s) REFRIGERATOR Grade A. This is the first refrigerator we've had in awhile that did not have mini bar items making you remove all the items to put your own sodas in. The refrigerator worked good and kept items very cold (which hasn't always been the case on recent cruise ships) TV:. Grade C (for Republicans) Grade B (for Democrats). I normally give grades of F and D since most carnival ships have the lousy no name TV's with remotes that seem to have a mind of their own and that use the older menu interface. On the horizon, it's a complete 180--the TV's are 40” (possibly 32”) LG flat panels, the remotes work well, and the menu interface is the new style where you can view your pictures, see your account activity, etc. The channel lineup is still lousy though. The choice of channels leaves conservatives with a migraine after having to watch a week of CNN as your only news choice. (There is Headline News to watch in the morning which is good) Not sure when Carnival did away with its networks (abc, CBS, nbc) but they are sorely missed. Gym / track: grade A. The track goes around the back of the ship to about mid ship. 7 times around is one mile. It was rarely crowded but very windy most of the time. The gym was one of the larger gyms I’ve seen and had plenty of equipment that was brand new and rarely busy in the morning (the photo was taken at 7am on a port day) FOOD Overall Grade A. Overall I think Carnival has an excellent food and dining operation Their lunch offerings and variety are the best at sea in my opinion and the evening dinners are on par with all the other mass mainstream cruise operators. Specific venues: GUYS PIG & ANCHOR BBQ: Grade B I began my cruise on embarkation day by visiting the pig and anchor on deck 5 which opens at 1130 on embarkation day. The food was excellent and may be the best BBQ at sea; however I downgraded my overall grade to a B. The one port day it was open it was not as good--both the beef and pork were dry and the sauces were very good (I was first one in line so I would recommend waiting 30 minutes or so if you don't mind waiting in line a bit). I ate there 4 times for lunch--2 were excellent, one was good, and the one I just described was just average. NOTE:. PIG and anchor is only open on embarkation and sea days EXCEPT if you have a port day that ports after the lunch hour. On our itinerary we didn't arrive arrive San Juan until 1:15pm so the pig and anchor was open that day. The lines on embarkation day were short, but the sea days the lines were VERY LONG so go early! (There was a minimal line on the San Juan port day because I don't think many people knew it was open) Also, the Pig & Anchor brewhouse turns in to a specialty restaurant in the evenings (see the photo below for the menu). GUYS BURGER JOINT: Grade A. I then headed up to guys burger joint after BBQ on embarkation day. It was not too crowded yet and was quickly served what I consider the best burgers being served on the seven seas. The lines were generally longest when it first opened and about 3pm or so when all aboard time was 4ish but quickly become short because of how efficient the burgers are served. GARDEN BUFFET: Grade C. On embarkation day after hitting the guy fieri's venues, I then meet my wife in the garden buffet and sampled several items which were all hot. The line at the first buffet line after entering from the pool area was moderate to long, but the best kept secret is to keep walking to the aft buffet because no one was there and no lines. I give the garden buffet a grade of C for two primary reasons: 1. The lines tend to get long at peak times; and 2. The breakfast does not open until 7:30 on sea days which is late for early risers leading to a big line right at 7:30 when it does open. The lines on port days when it opens at 7:00 were much shorter but still a fair number of people especially for the omelet line (which I attributed to an older crowd coupled with return of standard Time the second night of our cruise and it was light by 0530 each morning). It generally started getting very busy around 8:00. Otherwise the food is on par with other cruise lines. Self serve beer taps grade 😄 there are four self serve beer taps near the back of the garden Buffett. They are all .29 cents an ounce. On one side is Miller light and red frog red. On the other side is red frog and dos equis. I love the self serve beer taps and the only reason for the C grade is about half the time it was a lot of foam DELI. Grade B. The sandwiches are good and freshly made to your liking which would have received a grade of A except I downgraded because the service can be described in three words: SLOW, SLOWER, and SLOWEST, primarily due to only one guy making the sandwiches MONGOLIAN WOK: Grade A. Great mongolian / Asian food. On the Horizon it’s up on deck 11 with the pasta bar (which is the Cucina Capitano Italian Specialty restaurant in the evening) and you place your order and receive a pager which works great compared to the older system of standing in line and all the smoke from the wok blows in your face making you cough! PIZZA: Grade B. The pizza on Carnival is very tasty--fresh made in an electric grill that mimics wood fired. Lines can be a bit long at peak times but it’s open 24x7. BLUE IGUANA. Grade A. Another great Tex-Mex option with great tacos, burritos, and taco bowls. You can get shrimp tacos as well (although shrimp is not listed on the taco side it is available on the burrito side). Lines for both the tacos are normally short and fast but the line on the side for the burrito / salad bowl can get long during peak times. PIG AND ANCHOR BREWHOUSE aka REDFROG PUB. Grade C on this ship (On the Vista I would give it an A) My wife and I headed to what we thought would be the redfrog pub on deck 5 but is the "Pig and Anchor Brewhouse" hoping it had half off happy hour on embarkation and port days like the redfrog on Carnival Vista did. Much to our chagrin and disappointment, no such luck on the horizon. Further disappointing was the lack of self serve beer taps like the Vista. If you want to drink Redfrog beer you'll have to go up to the self serve taps on 10 or order it at one of the bars. MAIN DINING ROOM (MDR) Grade B I normally ask the waiter each evening what their best appetizer and entree are and if your waiter has been on the ship for any period of time, their recommendations are spot on. I even had a waiter on one cruise, with a good sense of humor, identify their WORST dishes and would bring one out for me at random to try just to prove it! I identify which items were recommended each evening Day 1: waiter recommendation: strawberry bisque, Vietnamese roll, sweet and sour shrimp. My selections: Strawberry bisque: A this is like a strawberry smoothie that tastes more like a dessert than an appetizer but it's excellent whenever you choose to eat it. Sweet and sour shrimp grade B. This was very good. You'll want to order a second entree if very hungry. DAY 2 (first formal night): waiter recommendation: lobster and prime rib. My selections: Sicilian meatball soup grade A. prime rib and lobster Grade A. All of the items were excellent. Day 4: Waiter Recommendation: Flatbread and Lamb Shank. My Selections: Flatbread Grade B; Lamb Shank Grade A: I’m not a big fan of lamb but this dish was excellent--extremely tender and great flavor. Day 5: Waiter Recommendation: Seafood Newburg and Beef Wellington. My Selections: Bing Cherry Bisque Grade A (identical to the Strawberry Bisque except cherry flavored); Penne Siciliana (ordered as an appetizer) Grade A; Beef Wellington Grade A. All of these items were outstanding. A great evening menu. DAY 6: Waiter Recommendation: Chicken Skewers; Penne Mariscos; Chicken Milanese. My Selections: Chicken Skewers Grade A; Steak & Cheddar Soup Grade B; Penne Mariscos (ordered as an appetizer) Grade C; Chicken Milanese Grade B. Day 7 (2nd formal night): Waiter recommendations: Stuffed mushrooms, Filet, and Teriyaki Salmon Filet. My Selections: Stuffed mushrooms Grade A; Chesapeake crab cake Grade B; Grilled jumbo shrimp B; Filet Grade B (I had the $20 surcharge filet on a recent Carnival cruise which was better than the filet on this menu). DAY 8:. Waiter recommendation: Prime rib; My Selections: Baked onion soup Grade B; Penne shrimp & bacon (ordered as an appetizer) Grade B; Prime Rib Grade A. PORTS: I won't provide any port reviews because I doubt they would be helpful to anyone. When our kids were younger and cruised with us we used to get off at every port and do an excursion, go to the beach, etc but now we generally stay on the ship and if we do get off, well walk around the town or cruise village or town, have a drink, and return in a couple hours. I will say we enjoyed this itinerary because San Juan, St Kitts, and St Maarten are all very nice and you're not accosted by tour operator etc when walking around. FUN TIMES DAILYS EMBARKATION DAY DAY 2 AT SEA Day 3: GRAND TURK DAY 4 SAN JUAN DAY 5 ST KITTS: DAY 6 ST MAARTEN DAY 7 SEA DAY DAY 8 SEA DAY ENTERTAINMENT Overall grade B. Overall the entertainment was very good. On the plus side is the variety of options each night, the plethora of live music options, and all events start promptly on time. On the negative side, the playlist production shows in the main theater each evening are somewhat “cookie cutter” with the same group of singers and dancers doing each show--it’s a little like going to a MLB game and watching a game with all utility players and middle relievers--skilled and competent performers but not real exciting. Carnival is being outpaced in this area by the other lines with Broadway inspired shows where the cast is contracted only for that show and isn't later running the bingo or trivia games like you see on carnival. The performers themselves are very talented but when they have to do four different shows it's not going to compare to the other cruise lines who spend substantial sums to bring in Broadway shows, eg Jersey boys, Mama Mia, etc. (It's quite impressive that the performers on Carnival perform so well the choreography and singing for four different production shows!) The comedy shows in the punchliners were great--a lot of shows each night and they even flew in two new comedians mid cruise. Here’s are my comments on some specific entertainment: Cruise director Mike Pack:. Grade A. Mike did a great job. He's a middle age guy from the UK that really did a nice job keeping the energy level up, was enthusiastic, articulate and seemed to like his job and genuinely likes interacting with the passengers. He was everywhere and his “signature” was giving hugs to all the passengers which came across as genuine affection for folks. LIVE MUSIC: Grade A: The live music quality, variety, and quality is fantastic. We also greatly appreciated how Carnival publishes the lineup for the entire week outside of each venue. Here’s the lineup on the week. Atrium Acts: Electric violins with new age, demage, and Owen Stephen: grade A. All these acts were excellent. New agen, a violin trio that plays modern hits on violin accompanied by recorded music, was our favorite. The atrium was our favorite pre-dinner venue. SHOWTIME PLAYLIST PRODUCTION SHOWS IN THE LIQUID LOUNGE (MAIN THEATER): Showtime Soulbound: grade C While a somewhat “typical” carnival dance and singing production show, this show was actually pretty good--it was high energy, and got the audience involved in singing clapping etc. If you like R&B hits from the 60s 70s and 80s you'll like the show. The pre-show activities, which started 15 minutes before Showtime, were entertaining too. Then the end of the show “spills over” into the atrium for a final two songs and passenger dancing etc. It was a good time and recommended. I liked it the best of the three showtime shows. Showtime Amor Cubano. Grade 😄 this show was billed as the sounds of modern Latin America. It was another “typical” carnival production except a live orchestra accompanied the singers and dancers which always adds to any live theater show. Showtime vintage pop. Grade C. The live orchestra playing in the show was the highlight for me but otherwise it was just average and on par with the other shows Showtime celestial strings. Grade B. The CD was touting this all day as the best theater production show at sea exclaiming you could only see it on the horizon, and predicting it would win the cruise industry award for best new show. While I don't think I'd go that far, I would say it was the best of the four playlist production shows. The violin trio that played in the evenings were the featured musicians (hence the name celestial strings) but most of the time the violins were drowned out by the pre-recorded music and singing. Many times when the violinists were playing you couldn't even hear them. Showtime Viva variety: Brent and Sarah non stop laugh riot. Grade A:. This is a married couple that does a comedy magic show. They were flown in to do this show so I'm not sure they perform on every horizon itinerary. They were very good and entertaining for the entire family. The show lasted approximately 40 minutes. MISC ENTERTAINMENT EVENTS: Clue: Grade B (for families) Grade D (for everyone else) Based on the board game clue, on the first night all the suspects (Mr Green, Ms peacock, colonel mustard etc) explain why they couldn't have been the one to commit the murder. The passengers are then to gather clues the rest of the cruise to figure out “who dunit” on the last night. I only saw one other event advertised to get a clue so if you do choose to participate, you have to pay close attention during the week where to get clues. I attended the last day (right before Bingo) when the murder was solved and from the hands that went up of passengers that participated, there were not a lot of passengers that partook during the week. 60 minutes to win it: grade F. Many of you have probably seen this show where contestants have to complete tasks in 60 seco day or less but this was not that show. Instead it was one member of the fun squad leading various contests with passengers like a scavenger hunt, a trivia type game etc. This is the second carnival Cruise in recent months that has done this--i'm not sure why except maybe carnival got in to a licensing dispute with the original creator of the 60 seconds or less game show and can no longer copy the model. Hasbro the game show. Grade A (for families). This show is a lot of fun--especially for families with smaller kids. Two teams (teams are kids with one adult captains) compete in various Hasbro games on stage. Some of the kids say some really funny things and it's a fun one hour show Dive in movies on the pool deck:. Grade A. On nice evenings it doesn't get much better sitting outside eating fresh popped popcorn (at the redfrog bar) and watching relatively new release movies. The breeze would show a matinee on port days and two in the evening at 7 and 930. All the chairs would normally fill up within 15 minutes after the movie starts so arrive early if you have more than 2 and want to sit together. Park West art auctions:. They are no longer on the horizon. I wonder if this is the beginning of the end for park west's relationship with carnival? Instead, on the horizon they sell metal prints of photographs under carnivals “pixels” photo studio brand. Egg drop event in the atrium: grade B:. This was very popular--probably 40 guests entered. It was a fun sea day event to kill some time. The crowds were big so arrive a few minutes early. Battle of the Sexes Grade and Love and Marriage Shows: Grade C Both of these shows are usually entertaining and are heavily dependent on the team members and the CD for how entertaining they are. COMEDY IN THE PUNCHLINERS:. The punchliners is always one of our favorite entertainment events. Couple things that may be helpful. All the shows started right on time and were finished in 30 minutes--every now and then a show may go 35 minutes but I think carnival must stress to the comedians to keep it to 30 minutes. The 530 family shows don't get too crowded but all the shows after 730 normally fill up. I'd recommend arriving at least 15 minutes early and if the line stretches back to the casino, don't worry--you'll still get in. We saw approximately twelve shows by four different comedians over the course of the cruise. We saw both the family and adult shows and my wife and I thought they were just OK--some of them were pretty funny and others were not quite our style of humor. Carnival does a great job of scheduling comedy at a variety of times to suit almost everyone. DISEMBARKATION: Grade A. We did the self-assist early disembarkation for platinum guests. We received clearance right at 7:00 a.m. and we were out to the shuttle by 7:30. CONCLUSION: Our cruise aboard the Carnival Horizon was a fantastic 8 day cruise and I think anyone who enjoys cruises would thoroughly enjoy the Horizon. I hope the above review helps you plan your vacation on the Horizon and you have a great time!
  11. Carnival introduced a new sea day brunch menu, titled American Brunch, on the Carnival Horizon today. The new menu features a few old favorites, as well as many new ones. The menu also features a new cold pressed juice menu for a $5 upcharge, as well as Lobster Benedict, Peel & Eat Shrimp, or Garlic Crab as upcharge entree options. The new menu is attached.
  12. Both have Southern Caribbean itinerary. The Magic sails from FLL, the Horizon from Miami. Magic ports are HMC, Grand Turk, Curaco, and Aruba. The Horizon sails to Grand Turk, La Romania, Curaco. and Aruba. Looking at Dec. 2019. Please help me decide! The prices are similar.
  13. Hello All!! Our family is planning a Reunion Vacation on the Horizon for January, 2020. I am a light sleeper and have been reviewing the deck plans before booking to determine the best balcony for my husband and I on Decks 8 or 9. Has anyone stayed in the Havana Aft Balcony on Deck 8? How much music/noice will the cabins get from the pool area and for how long? Also, the Premium Balconies (Deck 8) are close to the Havana Aft Balconies; does this cabin get music/noise from the Havana area? Thanks
  14. What's the deal with the muster drill now? Is it still outside?
  15. Can you pour beer into your own mug or must you use a Carnival glass? Is there a minimum or maximum amount? (Love the full gratuities on self serve!)
  16. I just got off Carnival Horizon, (full review will come later). While on the ship we came across the acoustic musician Owen Stephen. It was his first week on the ship. Owen plays different types of music from country to classic rock, besides his own music. Very talented and willing to sing almost every song that was requested. He plays in the pig and anchor, the atrium and a couple of times in the ocean plaza. Try and see at least one of his shows during the cruise.
  17. Hello~ My 3 friends and I will be going on the Horizon in January. We currently have 2 adjoining balcony rooms, on deck 7. We were considering moving to a Havana suite, on Deck 5. So, there would be 4 women and 1 bathroom. I think 2 of us would have to sleep on the couch. It would be an extra $200 for each of us. Should we switch to the suite or stay where we are? Is the Havana area worth it?? Thanks!
  18. So there's the free Dive in series, right? What's the deal with the Imax and isn't there one other type of movie on board? What's the cost?
  19. Does Carnival Horizon offer the Behind the Scenes excursion? Has anyone done it?
  20. How many plugs are in the room? At the desk? Nightstand?
  21. Hi all, I have been watching You Tube videos and do not see any pools that are walkin. It appears that all entrances/exits are ladders. Does anyone know if any pools that have stairs to get in and out of?
  22. Looking for Horizon 8 Day Fun Times with ports Grand Turk, La Romania, Curacoa, and Aruba. Thanks
  23. Hi, I'm looking to book two rooms on deck 2 that are part of the Family Harbor series. I've talked so a few people and they said there was so much noise from above. One had a room below the club/bar and one below the Galley. The Galley takes up a huge part of deck 3. I really don't want to pay a premium for these rooms to then not be able to sleep. Anyone have any other experience and can tell me which rooms you booked. We currently have 2409 and 2423. Thanks
  24. After reading so many negative reviews, I feel the obligation to post this review here. I'm happy to answer any questions, and I'd love to hear from those who had a negative experience to see where things went wrong. My review follows: After reading countless negative reviews of the Carnival Horizon, I feel the need to clear the air. This was my 29th cruise, and one of my top few. I traveled with my octogenarian, but very active father. He's a lifelong Bostonian, and I live in Albuquerque. We sailed an 8 day cruise to Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Kitts, and St. Maarten on 10/6/18. My Dad stayed for a few nights before the cruise at the Fountainbleu Hotel on Miami Beach. I can't speak to it personally, but he really enjoyed it, and has stayed there multiple times. The ship was one of the major draws for us, as we like all the cool things you can do on the Horizon. We were quite disappointed when we got an email a few days prior to sailing stating that the Sky Ride would be down for the duration of our cruise. We were lucky that they got it up and running on the fourth day, but more on that later. The bottom line is that the ship did not disappoint. She is a beautiful ship that was very well maintained. The activities on the ship were many. If you happened to read my Splendor review from June, you'd know that besides one ping pong tournament, there were no organized sports activities. I wasn't sure if this was a trend for Carnival, but I'm happy to report that there were several different sports tournaments: ping pong once, dodgeball scheduled three times but played twice due to rain one day, volleyball twice, soccer once I believe, and basketball knockout twice. I think there were also pool games one day. Besides the staff run tournaments, there were plenty of other activities. The aforementioned Sky Ride was a thrill. The lines could get long, so I'd suggest either going early or on a port day. The Sky Course was also a lot of fun. My Dad and I did each several times. The wait for the Sky Course ranged from 0-5 minutes. I'd recommend doing the course without grabbing your harness for support. Most people did the course while holding their own harness, and it defeats the purpose of the obstacles. The mini golf course was one of the best at sea. They also had cornhole, foosball, ping pong, billiards, and soccer billiards (that will be a new one to most, as it was to us). I also played several rounds of trivia of various subjects. The staff did an excellent job hosting these events. Service onboard was excellent. Our room steward was very capable. We had My Time Dining, and ate at around 6:45 most nights (which I'd consider around the peak time). We only waited on one night for about 15 minutes (the first formal night). All other nights we were assigned a table right away. All of our waiters (and we had different ones each night) were exceptional. Food was delivered quickly and our orders were always correct. Food was not always piping hot, but that is to be expected given the circumstances of serving several thousand guests. Speaking of dining, the food was really great. Horizon shines at lunch time. One negative thing that I read about before sailing was that the wait times at lunch venues was intolerable. I can tell you that for my sailing, we hardly waited at all, and we tried all of the lunch options. Our faves were probably Guy's BBQ and Guy's Burgers, but there isn't a bad choice in the bunch. I love the menu options in the main dining room - there are so many good choices that I ate way too much! I'm a lover of Royal Caribbean as well, and I have to say that Carnival far exceeds Royal in the MDR. Royal only has a few selections of each category, while Carnival has double the options. They even have special menu items based on the port you were in each day. Oh - check out the buffet at lunch, even if you eat elsewhere. They have 5-6 awesome cakes and a couple types of gelato, all of which are different each day. We stayed in an interior cabin on the 8th deck in the center of the ship. This was a very quiet area and we were easily able to get to the Lido deck only two floors up and the entertainment decks just a few decks down. The cabin was simple but very functional with two desktops and two 110v plugs, two USB plugs, and a European outlet. The fridge in the room was empty (as it was on Splendor), so you don't have to mess with freeing space for your own stuff. The beds were very comfortable. The entertainment on this ship is arguably the best in the Carnival fleet. I'd still say that Royal holds an edge here on Oasis Class ships, but Carnival's singer/dancer shows were extraordinary. I read reviews that said the show venue is too small and has poor sightlines. This is true, but if you arrive 20-30 minutes before the show starts, you will get great seats. The performers frequently come into the audience to perform, and it results in a really great show - as long as you get there early. The same goes for the comedy shows. For the late night performances, you definitely need to get there at least 15 minutes early to get a seat. The earlier shows do not fill up, so you can arrive just before showtime. I do love how Carnival offers so many comedy shows on their ships. We had late flights heading out of town, so we booked the Carnival Everglades trip with airport drop off. This was a great trip at a very fair price. The only negative is that you have to meet to get off the ship at 7:45am. I wish they offered a later option for people with really late flights like us. We were at the airport around 12:30pm, about five hours prior to our flights. All in all, we had an excellent trip at a great value. I look forward to cruising the Horizon or a sister ship in the future.
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