1st time Carnival cruiser (DREAM) complete review & pictorial (from a NCL cruiser)

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OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010


This is what the boys did after lunch





Don't worry, we didn't allow it to go on too long.

A few sand castles for the day






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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
Alabama
1,898 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Enjoying your review!

Here's what Playa Mia looked like the last time we were there:



There wasn't ONE chair vacant that I could see! REALLY!
You were really lucky!
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Chuck

Sailed:
Celebrity Silhouette- 03/2018
RCCL Navigator of the Seas- 03/2017
RCCL Liberty of the Seas 11/2016- Roatan, Belize City, and Cozumel.
Celebrity Summit- sailed 03/2016- Dominica, Martinique, St Kitts, St Thomas, and Tortula
HAL Ms. Eurodam- sailed 11/08/2015- Grand Cayman, Falmouth. Key West, and HMC
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Princess Ruby Princess- sailed 11/2012- Princess Cay, St. Maarten, St Thomas, Grand Turk
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OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
One last play in the sand and then I had to drag her out and it was time to say goodbye.





Someone looks a little...um...RED. I'm not gonna say I told you so but...I told ya so.



This would continue to haunt us for the next few days.

Oh, I almost forgot...there was a guy walking around when we first got there (well about an hour after arriving) that had 2 macaws and they put them on Sakari's arms to hold. Right when I got ready to snap the picture, he yelled at me and told me if I was to take the picture, I would be asked to leave. Um, ok. Then he proceeded to take her picture...of course. He then told us that they would come back around to let us see it or tell us where to buy it at in a little while. They never did come back. I later had my husband go inquire about it and he was told "we're closed now and you can't get the picture". Way to go photographer....NOT. It kinda ticked me off that I was yelled at for nothing and I had every intention of purchasing the picture. I always bring extra $$ for things just like this. Too bad this place didn't get it after all.

They also walked around with an iguana you could hold. Sakari didn't get to hold that one.



We decided it was time to go and headed for the entrance to grab a cab back to spend an little more time at the port taking more pictures before getting back on the ship.

When we got out front, there were several iguanas walking around.





A cab pulled up within 5 minutes of getting out there and actually had to wait on us since we were busy taking pictures and looking at the iguanas.

We arrived back to the port in about 15 mintues. No problem Mon. Oh wait, that's Jamaica and was one of last years cruises. Oh well, I'm practicing up since we'll be there again in 6 months, 17 days, 12 hours, 43 minutes and 18 seconds...but who's counting.

So my final thoughts on Playa Mia.

It was a nice place. Beautifully decorated and landscaped. Bright, bold colors like I like.

The place was HUGE. There's plenty to do. I wish they had the water toys out in the ocean and we are sad we missed it.

I didn't like or appreciate getting yelled at or the several "rules" they implied on us that day, but hey, rules are rules so whatever.

The food was good...not great, but good enough to fill our bellies.

We are glad that we chose to do the smaller package because it allowed us to come and go as we wanted instead of just the allotted time frame the ship has for the excursion. Yes there were others there that day as you can see in my iguana picture, but I'm guessing no more than maybe 20 people there that day including us??? I can guarantee these people were people that took the higher package with the cruise ship because they were not there that long. I believe the ship allows like 3 or 4 hours there and you have to head back. We were there basically all day for a cheaper price. I have to say that if you are in port with a lot of cruise ships, I can't imagine being here. You seen the rows and rows of chairs and the place is huge and will accommodate a lot of people. I can only imagine what this place is liked packed. I sure know I wouldn't want to be there. I've been in port on days that there were 7 cruise ships there. I would head to an AI or Chankanaab on a day like that.

So would I recommend this place. Yea, with the exceptions above...a lot of cruise ships. It was a nice day.

Would I recommend it over my favorite place to far (Chankanaab)? No, not even close. We have been to Chankanaab twice for a reason. We have now tried Nachi Cocom and now Playa Mia. Neither compare to our beloved Chankanaab.

Would I go back to Playa Mia? Nope, it's one of those been there done that and I'm checking it off my list now.

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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
Rhode Island
3,653 Posts
Joined Aug 2001
Originally posted by cruisinqt
On the first night of the cruise the kids club is always closed because it can't accommodate the mass influx of passengers wanting to sign their kids up for camp carnival. So they have a welcome aboard orientation meeting in one of the show lounges. There's usually games and prizes too. Then later on there's usually some family activity planned like a scavenger hunt or dance party in another lounge area or disco. So if you go to camp carnival it will be empty. Just be sure to check the info sheets in our cabin because there will be info about it.

Also, if you go to camp carnival during the week when they're supposed to be open and no ones there its usually because they are off in another area of the ship. They often go to the lido for ice cream eating contests or to lounges to play games with Funship Freddie. We have found if you're even 5-10 minutes late they may already be gone.

Btw, loving your review. Keep it coming.
This is true. On every cruise we have been on, the first night right after dinner is the Camp Carnival Welcome Aboard party in the Disco... and then a family activity. This was indeed the case on the Dream last year. They also had orientation late in the first afternoon, where we were given a specific schedule of Camp openings and closings, and the rules about picking up, Camp Dinner, late night activities such as the Late Night Owls Program.

Did anyone tell you that the second level of the Lido Buffet area is the Pasta Bar? I am not sure if that was explained. Certainly a miss during lunch time if you never found it.

Great review so far, but it seems although you are a seasoned cruiser, you are certainly finding rookie Carnival issues.... looks lke you will have to go on another Carnival cruise to figure it all out!!
Catrin
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19 Carnival Cruises!!
Review of 2012 Liberty Cruise http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1757587
Review of 2013 Splendor Cruise..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1894153
Review of 2014 Magic Cruise..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2037569
Review of 2015 Conquest Cruise .. http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2205948
Review of 2016 Sunshine Cruise ..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2349469
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
So we got back on the ship, showered and changed and did our usual. Once we snacked and waited on sail away, the munchkin wanted to go to visit with her friends at CC. I sat out on the deck outside of the club and the hubby took her in to drop her off. They questioned him about the phone. He told them that I had the phone in my purse and was sitting right outside the door on the deck. They hassled him about it and grumbled like always. Grrr He came out and told me about it and I said if they didn't believe you all they had to do was call the number and I would have answered.

Kendra and family took a nap. We didn't see them until later that night. I believe we did our usual and headed for the casino to burn up a little bit of money. However, it was a good night. I walked away an extra $97 richer and the hubby won $30 something. It was a good night. Time to do a little shopping.

We went to the shops on board and purchased a few tee-shirts for Sakari, not only for a souvenir but so that she would be able to have one to wear the next day on our cave tubing excursion. (The one she had on all today was Braydens). I purchased some post cards for a cafeteria employee at work that is just so nice to me. He buys my soda every day I work and calls me "Fergie" because he claims I look like her and anyone nice like that is good in my book. He has never been out of our state and he always request post cards to places people go. It was the least I could do for him. I just love him to death.

Later that night they were having a RED party. I was excited. I love going to NCL's White Hot party. Kendra and I go out and my an outfit just for the occasion, boa's and all. Well I knew I was really going to miss this. But whoda thought...they have a red one...but I don't have anything red to wear. Oh well. I'm going anyhow to dance the night away.

We showed up, I located Kendra and we danced our butts off. Well, not really, I added more to mine on this cruise. But it was nice and everything was red, lights and all. Julie was up there getting everyone going and some of the staff was showing us dance moves. It was awesome as always. Sakari LOVED this night. Her and daddy were up there dancing away. Guess what???? She was caught on video by the camera man too. So now she was going to be on the big screen and the tv's in the rooms playing just like mommy was all week. LOL She was excited every time she seen herself on tv.





We knew we had to get up early in the morning to go cave tubing, so it was time to head back to the room and get things packed and get to bed.

Tonight, she received a new "friend" and of course a mint for each one of us. I told her "Look at the monkey" and her reply was "It's not a monkey mommy, it's a gorilla can't you tell?" Geesh, kids. She will correct you every time. She doesn't call animals by their general names, she has to know the exact type of animal and she's pretty good at it. It's not a "bird", it's a parrot, a flamigo, a pelican and so on. I should know this by now...I'm an adult, but still get corrected. So she introduced her "gorilla" friend to her new pink dolphin friend we bought her at the gift shop tonight. (She always gets to pick out 1 toy, some times 2 depending on the price, each cruise. It's always either a dolphin or a whale).




Good night day 3. Time for some sleep for day 4 and our second port day...Belize.
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by Catrin
This is true. On every cruise we have been on, the first night right after dinner is the Camp Carnival Welcome Aboard party in the Disco... and then a family activity. This was indeed the case on the Dream last year. They also had orientation late in the first afternoon, where we were given a specific schedule of Camp openings and closings, and the rules about picking up, Camp Dinner, late night activities such as the Late Night Owls Program.

Did anyone tell you that the second level of the Lido Buffet area is the Pasta Bar? I am not sure if that was explained. Certainly a miss during lunch time if you never found it.

Great review so far, but it seems although you are a seasoned cruiser, you are certainly finding rookie Carnival issues.... looks lke you will have to go on another Carnival cruise to figure it all out!!
Catrin
Yes, seasoned cruiser, yes first time Carnival cruiser. I have a lot to learn that's for sure and I plan on giving it another shot!

Since I had never been on Carnival before, I had no way of knowing that they had this "meeting" prior and the activities or games/prizes. I wish I would have known that. I would have definitely went. When we went up to CC, the only thing they said is that "We're not open yet and sign up isn't until 9-10pm tonight. Come back then and you can sign up your kids and view the place." No mention of anything prior to that. But then again as the week goes on...I would expect nothing less from these guys.

No, I did not know about the pasta bar...until starting this review and people have mentioned it when I ask about it. It just always looked closed so we never went up there. I don't even know how to access it from up stairs. I don't think I ever found that. Is it a pay place? No one has answered that question for me yet.
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Ok, so I'm pulling out my Camp Carnival Welcome Aboard for the 2-5 year olds and I can tell you that even the schedule they have on there is not correct or what they did that day.

First of all, had they given me this when I FIRST went up there after getting on board and they told me to come back after 9pm, I could have read about the Orientation.

Then it says on here that between 8-10pm is "Late Registration & Cell Phone Sign Out". They told me to come back at 9pm...not 8pm. It says the welcome aboard party was at 8-8:45pm at Caliente Club.

I just missed it all I tell ya.

-------------------------------------------------------------

Now, we went to a show that had the break dancers called Fun Force Break and we were told that they would be working with all of the kids to put on a "show" on the last sea day and all parents were invited. I was real excited about this because on NCL on our last cruise (STAR) they had a circus show and all of the kids from each kids club was in the show. It was amazing and we loved it and Sakari loved it. I mean it was just awesome to see all the hard work they did with the kids that week to prepare for the parents. Sakari was so proud and smiling from ear to ear. Well, I figured this was kinda the same thing but the kids dancing. We were told that they would be practicing all week.

I'll go ahead and finish this story now...they only picked a "few" I guess, because Sakari was there every day and she never once practiced a dance or seen these break dancers according to her. We went a few times to check on her or pick her up and the kids that were in the show were in a different room with the music going and practicing. Hmmm...ok. I was a little disappointed. I didn't go to the show at the end.

More to come on this "Camp Carnival"....
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
Rhode Island
3,653 Posts
Joined Aug 2001
Originally posted by mitsugirly
Yes, seasoned cruiser, yes first time Carnival cruiser. I have a lot to learn that's for sure and I plan on giving it another shot!

Since I had never been on Carnival before, I had no way of knowing that they had this "meeting" prior and the activities or games/prizes. I wish I would have known that. I would have definitely went. When we went up to CC, the only thing they said is that "We're not open yet and sign up isn't until 9-10pm tonight. Come back then and you can sign up your kids and view the place." No mention of anything prior to that. But then again as the week goes on...I would expect nothing less from these guys.

No, I did not know about the pasta bar...until starting this review and people have mentioned it when I ask about it. It just always looked closed so we never went up there. I don't even know how to access it from up stairs. I don't think I ever found that. Is it a pay place? No one has answered that question for me yet.
Sounds like CC did a terrible job this cruise... which is really too bad. It really depends on the mix of the girls.. we have had amazing weeks in CC, and other weeks that were just OK. It is too bad you were not greeted by a CC councilor when you boarded. We have always been handed a postcard with that info as soon as we get on the ship. They certainly missed the boat on your family.

And the phone thing? What a pain. The best thing about our daughter turning 6, was that we no longer had to carry that stupid phone.

Ok.. the Pasta place... on the Dream, it is Free... and open only during lunch. The stairs are accessible from the Lido Deck Buffet area, near the large dessert selection. When you go upstairs, you are handed a card. You fill out the card with the type of pasta you would like, plus the additions.... sauce, meat, veggies, etc. You take a seat and then they bring you your finished dish, along with bread and salad, if desired. We loved this place.. and my middle son visited there three or four times during the week, since he is a pasta freak. But the funny thing... he just wanted plain pasta with cheese.... you should see the weird looks they always gave him.... but that is what he got!!

Looking forward to the rest of your review!
Catrin
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19 Carnival Cruises!!
Review of 2012 Liberty Cruise http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1757587
Review of 2013 Splendor Cruise..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1894153
Review of 2014 Magic Cruise..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2037569
Review of 2015 Conquest Cruise .. http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2205948
Review of 2016 Sunshine Cruise ..http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2349469
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by Catrin
Sounds like CC did a terrible job this cruise... which is really too bad. It really depends on the mix of the girls.. we have had amazing weeks in CC, and other weeks that were just OK. It is too bad you were not greeted by a CC councilor when you boarded. We have always been handed a postcard with that info as soon as we get on the ship. They certainly missed the boat on your family.

And the phone thing? What a pain. The best thing about our daughter turning 6, was that we no longer had to carry that stupid phone.

Ok.. the Pasta place... on the Dream, it is Free... and open only during lunch. The stairs are accessible from the Lido Deck Buffet area, near the large dessert selection. When you go upstairs, you are handed a card. You fill out the card with the type of pasta you would like, plus the additions.... sauce, meat, veggies, etc. You take a seat and then they bring you your finished dish, along with bread and salad, if desired. We loved this place.. and my middle son visited there three or four times during the week, since he is a pasta freak. But the funny thing... he just wanted plain pasta with cheese.... you should see the weird looks they always gave him.... but that is what he got!!

Looking forward to the rest of your review!
Catrin
Yes, they definitely missed the boat with my family. I haven't even got to the good part yet that thoroughly pissed me off. My daughter always begs to go to the kids club, this was one cruise she begged not to go to after a few days. Definitely stay tuned on that one....

The pasta bar sounds wonderful. I know exactly where you enter. We tried several times just to see what was up there. They always had a sign up saying on entrance so I thought maybe there was another entrance somewhere. I just wrote it off as a "pay" restaurant that was only open during certain times of the day and never pursued it. Do the other Carnival ships have it? (Like the Breeze or Magic?). Those are the only other 2 I'm considering...I know the Sunshine will probably be too expensive for awhile.
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by retiring soon
Hi all!

Kim ~ loving your review, thanks. I too went on the Dream for my 1st Carnival cruise in April & liked it so much I'd do it again. I'm platinum on RCI
& gold on NCL but reallly enjoyed Carnival so much. I loved how spacious the theatre was too especially after the cramped one on Dawn! It was nice how they provided paper towels to open the w/c doors & had a garbage outside to dispose of them.

I just learned 2 dings of the elevator bell means going down which was the same on NCL.

Looking forward to the rest of the review when you get your work done.

~ Jo ~
Oh my gosh, I assume that the Dawn is just like the Star since they are sister ships and the Star was a nightmare in the theater. I got my toes crunched by a lady and her heels. It was not a good night for me. This Encore theater was amazing...simply amazing to sit in.

YES....the paper towels for the doors AND a basket outside of the door. Greatly thought out!

I have to admit the public restrooms SMELLED LIKE HEAVEN!!! EVERY ONE OF THEM!!! Really. Another nice touch.


WAIT, WHAT? NCL has the 1 and 2 dings? Are you fricken serious? Why do I not know this by now? Hanging my head in shame!
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
48 Posts
Joined Jul 2011
Great review. I will be sailing in August can't wait.

Btw The pasta bar is free
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Carnival Inspiration 8-27-2011
Carnival Ecstasy 8-27-2012
Carnival Dream 8-24-2013


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Tulsa, OK
5,174 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by mitsugirly
The pasta bar sounds wonderful. I know exactly where you enter. We tried several times just to see what was up there. They always had a sign up saying on entrance so I thought maybe there was another entrance somewhere. I just wrote it off as a "pay" restaurant that was only open during certain times of the day and never pursued it. Do the other Carnival ships have it? (Like the Breeze or Magic?). Those are the only other 2 I'm considering...I know the Sunshine will probably be too expensive for awhile.
It is on the Breeze & Magic. On those 2 ships (not the Dream), that spot is an extra-pay Italian restaurant, but the pasta bar at lunch is still free. Sunshine has the Italian restauarant on lido deck aft, not sure about the free lunch pasta bar. It looks very tiny on the Sunshine's deck plans.

Awesome review, by the way! Great pics, great explanations of everything. You picked a great ship to be your first Carnival ship. In my opinion, the Dream is by far the best Carnival ship. I've sailed her twice, with another one booked, even though I usually prefer not to repeat ships. This one is just too good! I have sailed both Magic & Breeze. There are a few extra nice things on those ships, but for me, Dream has them both beat by a mile. Drinkers like the Red Frog Pub on those, that Dream doesn't have. Burger people like Guys on those, that Dream doesn't have. My dad loved the ropes course on those, that Dream doesn't have. I can do without those things. The decor, feel, & far superior entertainment of Dream beats out those things for me.

I visited Playa Mia back in 2005 after Cozumel was hit by a hurricane. It's nice to see how far that place has come. I barely recognize anything in your pics. Since then, I'm usually next door a ways at Paradise Beach. Been to Chankanaab & enjoyed it too.
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Past cruises: Celebration 9-4-2003, Celebration 9-11-2004, Elation 12-12-2005, Valor 4-22-2007, Conquest 4-26-2009,
..................Holiday's final sailing 11-2-2009, Carnival Dream 4-17-2010
..................Carnival Triumph 11-8-2010, Carnival Miracle 4-4-2011, Carnival Dream 11-5-2011, Carnival Magic 3-18-2012,
..................Carnival Triumph 12-3-2012, Carnival Breeze 4-13-2013, Carnival Dream 1-25-2014,
..................Carnival Splendor 11-1-2014 (San Juan to Miami)

Upcoming cruises: Carnival Breeze 11-3-2018 (14-day Journeys)

k2 is in reference to the mountain known as K2, not a reference to the drug. Mountain highs are greater than any drug high!
Tulsa, OK
5,174 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by mitsugirly
After awhile, an employee came by and told us that we were not allowed in the water park with the kids. Um, ok. What if we had a toddler that couldn't go by themselves? Are you telling me that we would not be able to get in the water with them? At first I thought this was strange, then I remember taking this picture. Yes, Kendra again being a big kid and I have a feeling that is the reason they said this.



It's not like she was actually playing on the slides. She simply went up for me to take a picture of her. However, after she told me they said that, I completely ignored it because I'm not sitting in the hot sun while I watch my child play in the water, not being able to get in and not being able to leave to go over to the pool because she is playing at the water park. Sorry senior.
I missed this earlier. I love it! I am just like Kendra. I'm always wanting to do everything that the kids are doing. I'm just a big kid too. I hope we never lose that. On the waterslides on the ship, I'm always going on them over & over & over.......

If you try the Drainpipe again, clasp your hands behind your neck, elbows sticking out or preferably up in the air while laying down. That keeps me from having my head thrown back when I shoot out into the bowl. I consistently go around the bowl 4 times on Dream because it's a strong one, stronger than Breeze & Magic.
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Past cruises: Celebration 9-4-2003, Celebration 9-11-2004, Elation 12-12-2005, Valor 4-22-2007, Conquest 4-26-2009,
..................Holiday's final sailing 11-2-2009, Carnival Dream 4-17-2010
..................Carnival Triumph 11-8-2010, Carnival Miracle 4-4-2011, Carnival Dream 11-5-2011, Carnival Magic 3-18-2012,
..................Carnival Triumph 12-3-2012, Carnival Breeze 4-13-2013, Carnival Dream 1-25-2014,
..................Carnival Splendor 11-1-2014 (San Juan to Miami)

Upcoming cruises: Carnival Breeze 11-3-2018 (14-day Journeys)

k2 is in reference to the mountain known as K2, not a reference to the drug. Mountain highs are greater than any drug high!
San Diego, CA
5,282 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
Great review so far!! I can't wait for more!!

I cruised on the Dream a few years ago and loved her. It is great to see pictures of her again!
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Ecstasy- March 2003 (4 Day Baja Mexico)
Carnival Pride- February 2007 (7 Day Mexican Riveria)
Carnival Spirit- November 2007 (8 Day Exotic Mexican Riveria)
Carnival Freedom- February 2008 (7 Day Western Caribbean)
Carnival Elation- February 2009 (4 Day Baja Mexico)
Carnival Spirit- July 2009 (7 Day Southbound Alaska)
Carnival Dream- November 2010 (7 Day Eastern Caribbean)
Carnival Liberty- March/April 2012 (7 Day Eastern Caribbean)
Carnival Miracle-July 2014 (7 Day Alaska)
Carnival Inspiration- September 2016 (4 Day Baja Mexico)
Carnival Imagination- January 2018 (4 Day Baja Mexico)
66 Days at Sea and Counting!
663 Posts
Joined May 2004
I'm really enjoying your review. I haven't been on the Dream yet, but it looks like so much fun, we may have to consider it.
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Carnival Ecstasy Baja Mexico 2002
Disney Wonder Bahamas/WDW 2003
Disney Magic Mexican Riviera 2005
RCL Enchantment of the Seas Western Caribbean 2006
RCL Soveriegn of the Seas Bahamas 2006
NCL Pearl Alaska 2007
Carnival Glory 2009 Eastern Caribbean
Carnival Valor 2010 Western Caribbean
Carnival Liberty 2012
Carnival Conquest 2013
RCL Majesty of the Seas 2014
Carnival Valor 2016

Carnival Victory 2018
2,949 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by Catrin
Sounds like CC did a terrible job this cruise...
I agree- I have never read such a negative review of camp carnival. (I have no personal experience with it.) This is also the first time I've heard about the phones.
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Carnival Spirit- Mexican Riveria 01/01//08
Carnival Freedom- Eastern Carribean 01/01/11
Carnival Triumph- Progesso/Cozumel 4/14/12
Celebrity Xpedition- Galapagos 9/28/14
Carnival Magic- Western Carribean 09/20/15
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by k2excursion

If you try the Drainpipe again, clasp your hands behind your neck, elbows sticking out or preferably up in the air while laying down. That keeps me from having my head thrown back when I shoot out into the bowl. I consistently go around the bowl 4 times on Dream because it's a strong one, stronger than Breeze & Magic.
I wish I knew that prior to going on it. I didn't even realize that your were suppose to lay down. My neck hurt me for 2 days and the rest of my body was sore the day after, but I kept trucking on. I wasn't about to let it ruin my day and I worked out the kinks by doing more activities.

I went around the bowl several times on the Epic's bowl and it was a blast. On the Dream, I only made it around 1 1/2 times.
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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
I'm going to try to get in just a little before heading off to school. It's going to be a long day for me. So, I'll get our port info in for now if I can.

We started out the day much earlier than the previous day. Same routine of eating runny eggs and the fight for more bacon. Then up to the pool deck to wait on the slow daughter and her family to arrive.

This was a tender port of course, as everyone knows, and I wasn't looking forward to it. The last time we were here in December we decided to fore go the tendering process and booked Bannister Island with the cruise ship because they picked you right up from the ship and dropped you back off there.

We headed down to get our tender tickets and it wasn't early like I did the last time we had to tender. So, we were tender #7. They had us wait in one of the lounges and the nice thing about this is that we weren't just "waiting" in a room like I have down previously. They had the big screen tv going and it was playing something like Funniest Home Videos. It was hilarious and it passed the time away quickly. Everyone was laughing and having a good time. A+ Carnival for having "some" type of entertainment while you way. That was an awesome choice.

So when they called the next set of tenders, they called about 4 or 5 different tickets...which included us. Yippee. (I think they were on tender 4 when we walked in and I thought it was going to take forever).

We boarded the tender and away we went. They made the normal safety announcements once we started moving and added in their little humor to the mix which was nice. They told us it would be a 20 minute ride over to the port. It was nice out and there wasn't a lot of waves.

We arrived at the port. We had our excursion booked for cavetubing with .bz. We had used them a few cruises back and had a great day. Since Kendra wasn't with us on that cruise, she wanted to try cave tubing out and talked me in to going again. She used her normal excuse of "We have beach days planned for every other port, we need to break it up a little." She doesn't understand I thrive on going to the beach in the Caribbean. I would go there every day if I could. But I gave in. The last time we went my camera battery died before we made it in the water and caves and I had left my other one back at the van. So, I figured this was a good opportunity to get the pictures that I didn't get last time.

We made our way to the exit of the port. Yep, it still looked the same this time around too. We knew exactly who to look for and where to go. The bright yellow shirt guys.



They led us down the road to their parking space, which is always the last parking spot along the road there before heading out.

Just like last time, they had us stand outside by the vans, along the wall and wait for the rest of the people to arrive that would be going on the excursion with us. I'm still not sure why they do this instead of putting you in the van with the a/c on.



Our Dream out there waiting for us to come back from port day.





The vans they used. I believe they have new vans since the last time we went with them. I know the van we had before, the a/c didn't work. The tour guide had told us that it would get colder as we got moving, but it never really did. I was hoping to not have a repeat this time around. It was hot.



This would be the only time you would see this little guy happy for the entire day I believe.

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NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
OH
25,374 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Ok, I am off to school and will return later when I need a break from studying.

Everyone have a wonderful day. It's going to be 88 degrees here...makes me want to be back by the beautiful Caribbean beach again.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
NCL:
EPIC SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination Conquest Magic
ARUBA: Arashi Beaches Animals Sites
BAHAMAS:Great Stirrup Cay Half Moon Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Paradise
BARBADOS:Boatyard
BELIZE:Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Shark Ray Alley Goffs Rendezvous
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Snorkel Park Tobacco St Catherines Achilles Jet Ski/boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue KayBlueKay
COZUMEL:Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion Island Palancar Money Bar Paradise
CURACAO Diving
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC:Saona
GRAND CAYMAN:Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK:BohioGovernorsGibbs
ROATAN: LFKey LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK scuba
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS:Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN:Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS:Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths