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AryMay

Aug. 15th Legend Family Cruise...with Photos

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Yup, we're on the Legend as well - there's been so many reviews for the Legend lately & that's really helped build the excitement for me. This one, of course, being the best of all those reviews! :D

And yes, we're booked with Vitalino for the 22nd, too! There's 4 in our group, how many with you? We might be paired up together :) Sounds like a fun way to spend your birthday, that's for sure!

 

Awesome! We will also be 4 (but my dh doesn't know that-hope he doesn't read this) My friends from England are joining us & they won't let me tell him, so that it will be a surprise for him when we get on the ship. It is killing me to keep it secret, but only have to hold it for another 1 1/2 weeks.

 

So it is a good chance that we would be paired together. I thought that it was a great way to spend my birthday too. Hope all goes well. Bought new water shoes for all of us yesterday.

 

I agree that this is one of the best reviews & so love the pics. Guess I'll see you soon! Can't Wait!

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Awesome! We will also be 4 (but my dh doesn't know that-hope he doesn't read this) My friends from England are joining us & they won't let me tell him, so that it will be a surprise for him when we get on the ship. It is killing me to keep it secret, but only have to hold it for another 1 1/2 weeks.

 

So it is a good chance that we would be paired together. I thought that it was a great way to spend my birthday too. Hope all goes well. Bought new water shoes for all of us yesterday.

 

I agree that this is one of the best reviews & so love the pics. Guess I'll see you soon! Can't Wait!

 

You will have a great time. Legend is our favorite ship so far (the only one that we have ever booked a repeat cruise on) and the ports offered are wonderful. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of Grand Cayman (I plan on enjoying a quiet day on the ship that day) but Cozumel is always fun, and Roatan and Belize are awesome!!!

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Not trying to start an argument, but www.cave-tubing.com is not the operator using the large yellow tubes. Yhonny and his group use the same black tubes that your operator apparently does (unless things have changed since April 2009). When we were there, the big yellow tubes were used by the operators of the "cruise line" booked tour.

 

It was apparent to us that the independant operators, such as www.cave-tubing.com gave their customers a much better tour experience than the "yellow tube" folks got.

Anyway.....we were so impressed by Yhonny and his folks at www.cave-tubing.com that we are booking with them again for our upcoming April 2011 cruise.

 

Hmmmm...I guess I assumed that these were folks from cavetubing dot com since we were parked next to their large motorcoach bus in the parking lot. I will be the first to admit I could be wrong!

 

Perhaps someone else can say whether they have switched to the yellow tubes or not. From what Vitalino has on his website ALL of the cave tubing companies will have to be using the large tubes by next month.

 

If you want to book a tour, my suggestion is to read as many reviews as you can here on CC and also on trip advisor dot com and then make up your mind which cave tubing tour is best for you! Although there weren't too many reviews of Vitalino's tour on CC, there were MANY on TA and they were overwhelmingly positive.

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What a wonderful review! We're looking to book the Legend soon, and all of your pics and detailed info was great. Thank you for taking the time.:)

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Belize continued...

 

Back at the parking area, we changed clothes and loaded up the van for the ride back. (There were separate restrooms and changing rooms…all much cleaner and more modern than what we experienced in 2004.) We hadn’t driven too far when Vito, Jr. stopped at the home of his aunt (Vito, Sr.’s sister’s house). There was an outdoor patio area built on to the side of the house with plastic patio tables and chairs.

 

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Fabulous took our drink orders…we had our choice of several flavors of Fanta pop or rum punch. DH got pineapple Fanta and the rest of us…the punch. (Interesting way to serve rum punch, huh?)

 

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Several minutes later we were served a meal of chicken, rice with beans, and coleslaw. After all of our walking and tubing the food was delicious! We were offered as much as we wanted...and the guys all took them up on the offer for seconds!

 

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There were a few small crafts for sale here as well as Marie Sharp’s hot sauce. After trying the hot sauce on our meal, the kids bought several bottles to take home. After looking at these pictures I also remembered that DS1 bought a bottle of cashew wine as well.

Edited by AryMay

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Belize continued...

 

DS1’s roommate has a chihuahua so he had to get a photo of his cousin.

 

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For booking the tour, Fabulous gave me one of their yellow cavetubing dot bz t-shirts (which I passed along to DH!) Here are the girls with Vito and Fabulous.

 

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The long ride back to the pier was very, very quiet. DH stayed awake and had an interesting conversation with Vito, Jr. as he drove, but the rest of the van took a siesta…even Fabulous!

 

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Back at the terminal, DS1 decided he needed to do a little last minute shopping to buy gifts for some friends back home…but the rest of us were beat and just wanted to get back to the ship. We got lucky and the line for the tender wasn’t too long. I sat next to a couple of girls that I figured out were Carnival staff. It was interesting to listen to their conversation. From what they were saying it sounded like life on the ship was a bit of a soap opera (and much like what I read in Cruise Confidential!)

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Friday night (Elegant Night)

 

That evening (Friday) was the second elegant night on the ship. DIL and DS2 lookin' good...

 

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As we were eating dinner the ship passed by a small island…

 

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…and then another slightly bigger island.

 

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This is what I ordered for dinner. I can’t remember exactly what this dish was called…but they announced that it had won some sort of award in an international competition. Yes…it was good!

 

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If anyone is interested in more food photos I can post some. We didn’t take pictures of everything…but by having several cameras we did get a nice selection…just don’t expect me to know what each dish is!

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we just booked our first cruise on Carnival on the Legend (after waffling btwn cruiselines and ships for days!) This has been HUGELY helpful in allowing me to feel like we made a really good choice.

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I didn't see that you are signed up for our m&g at sailaway. Have you visited our rollcall for the Legend sailing on the 17th? http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1129241&page=30

 

I didn't sign up for the roll call because I doubt we'll make it to the m&g. I'm the only one of the 4 of us that's on CC, so I'd probably be the only one excited about the m&g.

I can't believe you're managing to keep a secret like that form your DH - I would be bursting by now! I'm bad at surprises, I always want to tell people the exciting news right away.:o The only surprise I've managed to keep for this cruise is that I bought DH & I a 4-pack of drink coupons each :rolleyes:

I'm looking forward to this cruise even more recently - we've found a house we want to buy so now we have to get this house ready to sell. It was all a bit spontaneous, we weren't planning on moving for about a year - until we found our perfect house a few weeks ago! So I've been a *bit* stressed about all this, I'll be happy to have a week where I can't do anything about the house & I'll just have to relax. Sigh. I can't wait!

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I didn't sign up for the roll call because I doubt we'll make it to the m&g. I'm the only one of the 4 of us that's on CC, so I'd probably be the only one excited about the m&g.

I can't believe you're managing to keep a secret like that form your DH - I would be bursting by now! I'm bad at surprises, I always want to tell people the exciting news right away.:o The only surprise I've managed to keep for this cruise is that I bought DH & I a 4-pack of drink coupons each :rolleyes:

I'm looking forward to this cruise even more recently - we've found a house we want to buy so now we have to get this house ready to sell. It was all a bit spontaneous, we weren't planning on moving for about a year - until we found our perfect house a few weeks ago! So I've been a *bit* stressed about all this, I'll be happy to have a week where I can't do anything about the house & I'll just have to relax. Sigh. I can't wait!

 

I am the only one from our group that is on CC too, but if we don't run into our friends from England before, I told thento be at the m&g. You might just witness my dh having a heart attack when he finally finds out that they are coming along! I have been saying that I'm about to burst, from the excitment compounded by keeping this secret. My mother & step-father almost gave it away already, but I don't think that the dh caught the slips that I managed to salvage.

 

I know how stressful & exciting the unexpected house move thing is. I have always managed to sell my own houses & getting it ready & preparing for the move is very taxing on the nerves. Nothing a couple of nice drinks on a nice ship can't cure though! Good Luck!

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Do you recall if you ever changed times on the ship? I'm trying to figure out what time it will be in Cozumel when we get there for a private fishing excursion. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

 

Snow bunny

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Do you recall if you ever changed times on the ship? I'm trying to figure out what time it will be in Cozumel when we get there for a private fishing excursion. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

 

Snow bunny

 

I always get so confused with local times when we cruise. On this trip we did NOT change our watches...we just stayed on Eastern Daylight Savings Time. On past cruises we have changed our time...I'm not sure why some cruises do make the switch and others don't.

 

Most of the time local tour operators are aware of the ship schedule so check with them to make sure.

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Saturday...Last Sea Day

 

Saturday was our last day…a sea day. The schedule went pretty much as it did on our first sea day…breakfast in the dining room and then some sun time around the adult pool at the back of the ship. There was a difference though…on Monday we were anticipating the whole week still ahead of us. On Saturday there was this nagging feeling that the cruise would soon be over and we would be back to real life.

 

I had barely been in the shops on the ship so on Saturday afternoon GF and I both checked out the $10 Bijoux Terner shop and the two of us each bought a couple of watches. It felt like we were buying a special souvenir of our cruise until we saw all of the same watches in a shop at the Tampa airport. Oh well…we both like our watches and you can’t complain about the price!

 

The Farewell Party was held at 4:30 that afternoon. It was listed on the day’s schedule in the Fun Times, but very little explanation was given in the Fun Times. Here is what was written in the Fun Times:

 

We’d like to thank each and every one of you for vacationing with us on the Carnival Legend this week! We’re not done yet and we’ve got a celebration you won’t want to miss. Live music, special guests and lots of fun! Join us in the Follies Lounge at 4:30 pm. This was at the bottom of the back page…something that was very easy to overlook.

The fact that there would be free drinks was not mentioned. I truly believe this is a cost cutting tactic by Carnival…get rid of the Captain’s party and replace it with the Farewell party and then don’t let people know about it! But…from reading CC I did know about the party so our whole crew showed up. There were lots of free drinks and Fun Freddie (who must have been the special guest mentioned in the Fun Times?) even showed up. But…the lounge was fairly empty…especially compared to the crowds that we used to show up at the Captain’s party. It will be interesting to see if this party gets phased out over time as well.

 

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From the Farewell party we headed to the sushi bar. Just a heads up…after the first night the sushi bar was not listed in the Fun Times at all. I talked to Jen (the CD) about this and she said it is open every night except formal nights. She insisted that it was in the daily schedule, but I have the Fun Times to prove that it was not. Tea time was also held on the last sea day but in order to get the packing done and get to the Farewell Party we didn’t make it.

 

My one goal for the week was to get a nice family photo done. I couldn’t convince anyone to pose for the professional photos during the week and the only other attempt we had made was outside. It was very windy and everyone’s hair was going wild...there was no way we could get a decent picture that time.

 

I insisted that we make one last attempt so after the kids were done with their sushi we tried. At first we tried setting the camera on a table and using the timer…but it was too low and the camera angle was weird. Eventually we had the lady from the Future Cruise Certificate counter take a couple and they turned out better. The kids all gave DS1 a hard time for this photo because he insisted on sitting in the chair (they said he looked like he was trying to be the king)…but I like it! In a weird sort of way it portrays some of our family dynamics!

 

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At dinner GF celebrated her birthday. DH got to the dining room a little early so he was able to let Ken Byrne (the maitre ‘d) know to announce it as he did his nightly speech. There was a little more napkin waving that night and then it was time to say our good-byes to Mario and German. Mario told us how much he enjoyed being our waiter and I truly believe he meant it.

 

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Conclusion

 

After dinner we went outside to enjoy one last sunset. What a beautiful way to end our week!

 

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That night was the Legends Show featuring ship guests portraying various singers…Britney Spears, James Brown, Elton John, Ricky Martin, Gloria Estefan, Elvis Presley, Madonna, Garth Brooks, Frank Sinatra and Aretha Franklin. Outside of the gal who was “Aretha” (who was excellent!) the others were at best just OK and not particularly memorable. Back in 2005 when we cruised on the Victory the passenger talent show was designed to be more like American Idol…I think I enjoyed it more. Does anyone remember a Carnival entertainment staff member named Hector? He played the Simon Cowell role in the show and was hilarious!

 

We left the Follies lounge through the upper level so that we could go directly back to our cabin on the Deck 4. DS2 took this photo of our family right outside the lounge.

 

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The next morning we had breakfast in the main dining room and listened as they repeatedly called the names of non-U.S. passengers who had failed to show up to go through customs. Until the non-U.S. citizens had been processed, no one else was allowed off the ship. Over and over they kept calling names and cabin numbers but I guess these folks just wanted to take their good sweet time about getting off the ship.

 

Once debarkation did begin it seemed to go fairly quickly. We found our luggage, went through customs and then walked across the street to the parking garage where we were to meet the Holiday Inn Express Rocky Point shuttle that was to be our ride back to the airport. When we called we were told it would take 20 minutes and it was exactly that when the van arrived.

 

During the time we were waiting another shuttle driver tried to convince us to go with him (can’t remember the name of the shuttle company right now) by telling us that he was the “back up” shuttle for the hotel. We told him the shuttle was on the way and we would wait. Once he knew that we weren’t going to go with him, then he became rude telling us that we weren’t allowed to stand where we were. He insisted he was “in charge” and we had to listen to him. The boys called him on his bluff and we stayed put.

 

I’ll spare you the details of the rest of the day which consisted of a lot of sitting in the airport and then a 3 hour drive back home from Minneapolis once our flight landed.

 

Reality hit quick once we were home. I started my first day of school the very next morning and we began the 2 week countdown to GF and DS3’s wedding! So much to do and such a short time left!

 

They were married on September 4th in a beautiful ceremony on an absolutely gorgeous day. In SW Minnesota a day without wind is rare and to have a calm day with 72 degree temps was more than we could have ask for! What a blessing to be able to share this day with all of our friends and family!

 

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It has been almost 2 months since our cruise and I apologize that this review has taken so long to complete. Thanks so much to those of you who have stuck with me. Thanks also for the kind comments…it made it so much easier to keep writing knowing someone was reading!

 

For those of you getting ready to cruise on the Legend...I will be looking forward to your review and photos!!

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I loved reading your review! Thank you for writing it. You have a very beautiful family.

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i loved reading your review! Thank you for writing it. You have a very beautiful family.

 

ditto!

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Thank YOU for a fabulous review. I have enjoyed it so much. My DD and I are eagerly waiting for March to arrive!!!

 

It brought tears to my eyes to see the wedding photo. I feel like I know you all.....

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Thanks again for the review! You have a beautiful family!

 

Question - Why was the other shuttle driver trying to get you all into his van? Was the Holiday Inn shuttle free and he was trying to charge you a fare? :confused:

 

I noticed the same thing about the farewell party my last 2 cruises - very little advertisement (you actually had more posted on your Fun Times...I think my last cruise it was just a line item on the time schedule) and light attendance. I think they're trying to phase out the free drinks as well.

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Thanks again for the review! You have a beautiful family!

 

Question - Why was the other shuttle driver trying to get you all into his van? Was the Holiday Inn shuttle free and he was trying to charge you a fare? :confused:

 

 

You are correct. I "think" it was Blue One Shuttles that were lined up in the parking garage trying to get customers. Essentially he was trying to "trick" us into paying him a fare when he said they were the "back up" shuttle for Holiday Inn.

 

Once he realized that we were not going to go with him, then he got rude and tried to keep us from standing by his shuttle. He insisted we go to the far side of the parking garage and wait there...which we did NOT do.

 

When he tried the line "I'm in charge of this garage"...my son just replied...no you aren't...you are a shuttle driver acting like you are in charge."

 

And as I said...the Holiday Inn shuttle showed up exactly when they said they would and the driver was very friendly.

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Just out of curiosity, what does DS1 do for Radisson?

 

I am curious why you are curious. ;)

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I see Bethel College shirts in some photos...

Do you kids attend the one in St Paul?

My brother graduated from there...

 

Yes! My DIL graduated from Bethel in St. Paul.

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Hi Just read your freedom review. Did DH finish his paramedic training? Love your reviews.

 

I just realized that I didn't answer this question...or at least I don't remember if I did. :o

 

Yes...my husband did finish his paramedic training this past March! When we cruised on the Freedom in July of 2009 he spent much of his free time on the 4 sea days studying.

 

The cruise this year was so much nicer for him knowing that he didn't have any tests or board exams looming in the near future...and I know he was able to enjoy the time much more because of it.

 

He still does the paramedic job in addition to his "real job" so on the days he is on call he puts in some really long hours. Today is his birthday and he just flew out the door to respond to a 9-1-1 call...while the rest of us wait for him to return so we can enjoy his birthday cake!

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