Jump to content
agc291

4 day Destiny Review-Thanksgiving

Recommended Posts

Amanda (22) & Mike (24) 4 day on the Destiny from Miami to Key West & Cozumel over Thanksgiving

 

We were fortunate enough to be able to take our second cruise this year. We took our first in the spring and I am addicted! We decided to take this cruise because it worked out with me taking time off work over the holiday. Our original plan was to fly down Wednesday and come back Monday after we debarked however Thanksgiving airfare was horrendous. We ended up taking a 6 am flight from IAD to MIA on Thanksgiving and staying an extra day on South Beach. Our flight was uneventful, we stopped at a Walgreens to buy 2 12 packs of soda which were a whopping $5 each. The cab fare was prorated to $25 to the port from the airport, we paid him a couple extra for taking us to Walgreens. We got to the port around 930 and were one of the first ones there! We easily used the kiosks (they didn't have these in the San Juan terminal) and were given our sign and sail cards along with zone 1 boarding pass. It didn't get too packed until 10:30 or so and they started allowing us to board around 10:45. Embarking was easy, we headed to the lido grill to eat and then laid out on the aft loungers until our rooms were ready. They were finally ready around 1:30 and so we took a nap before the muster drill ( I was up all night doing some last minute packing). The muster drill went by fairly quickly and then we went to the Lido again for sail away. Everyone was waving to us from the cars as we left and it was really nice to go past South Beach as we were leaving.

 

DSCN7296.jpg

 

DSCN7300.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our room was 9121 which was on the Lido, forward. We were on deck 10 forward before so we enjoy being so close to the Lido Deck. I thought the secret decks were on the 9th floor but the are actually on 6 & 7. I think next time we will try to be on 6 to be closer to everything else although it only takes a couple of minutes to get anywhere on the ship so it doesn't really matter. I forget our room stewards name but she was great, made sure we always had ice since we had order a bottle of Jim Beam from Bon Voyage and had brought on soda. Before our room steward had us get up by 8:30 to clean our rooms, although we appreciated his efforts we enjoy our sleep. She didn't mind skipping our room in the morning if we were still in bed which was great.

 

DSCN7308.jpg

DSCN7307.jpg

DSCN7306.jpg

DSCN7305.jpg

DSCN7304.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After sail away we walked around and learned our way around the ship. The Victory and the Destiny are pretty identical so it was pretty easy to get used to. We preferred the decor on the Destiny than the Victory but we preferred the Victory overall. The ship is showing some wear but is still overall a very nice ship. The pizza was a lot better on the Destiny, but the ice cream suffered as it was more a frozen yogurt consistency and just never seemed to be ready. My boyfriend enjoyed the buffet but the lines were quite long, while during the day I mostly ate at the grill or had pizza. We had dinner in the MDR 3 of the 4 nights, all except the formal night. We did the Pub Crawl in Key West so we napped and then didn't feel like getting a gussied up. The food in the MDR was pretty good, not as good of a selection as I remember the last cruise having but that may be because this was a 4 day. We had ATD which we have enjoyed both cruises. We were seated immediately every night and had average wait staff. Night 1 was Thanksgiving and I wasn't in the mood for the turkey so I had the fried chicken from the southern comfort section. It was good but the mashed potatoes side is small (do not recall the appetizer i had) and my BF had the steak and ribs. 3rd night I had the gazpacho which I didn't realize was chilled but was still good and the lasagna which was terrible, it didn't have much of any sauce and had a lot of spinach. My BF had the escargot which I also tried and thought it was very good and had the fried chicken for dinner. The 4th night I had spinach & artichoke dip and meatloaf which were both good. My BF had the sushi plate and steak. Sushi was a huge point for him on this cruise as he had at least 2 plates a day, the last night he had 6 including the plate in the MDR. I do not care for sushi but he says its delicious. We had room service a couple of time which was slow sometimes and other times came right away, always exactly what we ordered and great. We had the deli a couple of times which was also good and the line was never too long.

 

I heard a lot before this cruise that the short 3 & 4 day cruises were "party/booze cruises" but we didn't encounter that at all. I'm not sure if it was because it was over thanksgiving but besides the casino bar they were never really packed and there wasn't a lot of people up late in the disco where we spent a couple of nights. We went to one of the adult comedy shows for Louis Ramey which was really funny and also caught the Love & Marriage show which was also good. We participated in the scavenger hunt on the day at sea but it was pretty unfair. They gave people points for things even though they got them wrong but didn't do it for everyone. The list for the scavenger hunt was pretty good and some things you need to think outside the box for.

 

DSCN7337.jpg

DSCN7384.jpg

Edited by agc291

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Key West

We arrived at Key West on schedule but we didn't get off until 9:45 for our ship excursion. We booked the Key West Pub Crawl which was soooo much fun. Our tour guide was Beau and we hopped on a trolley to Mallory Square with a group of about 20. The crawl gives you a ticket for one drink at each of the 5 bars you stop at as well as a t shirt. The ticket covers either a domestic beer or well drink ( a drink with one shot of alcohol and one mixer , a cranberry & vodka or a rum & coke etc) or some had a house special. The first drink was a Bahama breeze or something which was pretty good. There is also a pizza place next door which was really good but $3.50 a slice. The 2nd bar was the flying monkeys saloon which was our favorite stop. They have slushie style drinks here which were amazing I had the chocolate one and my BF had the "grain train" which was 3 types of grain alcohol ( also a slushie style) which he said was also good, both were covered by our ticket. Next we stopped by the Schooner Wharf bar which was just past the recording studio Jimmy Buffet owns which was cool to see. We got the house special here which was just ok, this was our least favorite bar but it was right on the water which was pretty. Next we stopped by the Lazy Gecko which was kind of cool. Here they didn't have a special but they did offer you a deal that if you paid $1 you got to add an extra shot to your drink. I had malibu and orange juice and my BF had jim beam & coke with an extra shot. Next we went across the street to Ricks which was owned by the same person as the first bar so they also had the Bahama Breeze as the special. After this we walked around and shopped a little. We found a CVS for some pepto and then shopped some more. We had to be back by 1:30 so we headed toward Mallory square which had a HUGE line. We were docked at the navy pier so we couldn't just go through the port area. They stopped the trolley and checked the IDs and then we waited again to get back on board. As I said earlier we took a nap so we missed formal night but walked around the shop some more, looked at pictures and then went to latin music party in the down beats lounge. This was a pretty relaxing area, there was a large family that was dancing and having a great time. After this we just went up to lay on a lounger on the lido.

 

I do wish that the itinerary was switched around so that we would be able to be in Key West at night or longer because there was not enough time there.

 

DSCN7309.jpg

DSCN7310.jpg

DSCN7312.jpg

DSCN7317.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We apparently had to slow down at night due to rough seas, I didn't feel this at all but we were delayed pulling into Cozumel until 1:30 instead of 1. The lines were EXTREME to get off the boat which worried me because we had booked the Discover Scuba excursion which was scheduled for 2. The lines moved pretty fast and we were off by 1:45. We got to the area where we were meeting but come to find out it had been cancelled due to rough surf. I really was not impressed on how this was handled as this was a carnival excursion. We were late docking and I'm sure there was plenty of time to call Carnival so they could let us know. We found one of the excursion people who gave us a book and told us we could get refunded or pick a new excursion but we had only a few minutes to do so. We decided to hang around the port since we didn't get a chance to really look over our options and had done very little research on anything because we had decided to do this months out. We had done this in St. Thomas and were looking forward to it very much. The port area was nice but we did have a negative experience with some of the store owners. I wont go into the long story but they really do not know how to price things based on the other stores around them for certain items. The sunglasses were very cheap and they wanted $45 there were other items priced a minimum of $20 more than what the store next door was charging and I was constantly harassed to buy jewelry that was insanely overpriced ( i know because he dropped a ring for $600 to $200). After doing some shopping we got back on to eat some at the buffet and grill. Afterwards we went back out to shop a little more and then drank at Fat Tuesdays, which seemed fairly priced but didn't seem to have much going on. We sat by the fountain for a while and then went back on at about 8:30. We had dinner in the MDR, saw the comedy show and then went to the disco until late since the next day was at sea. We were surprised that there weren't more people out.

 

DSCN7343.jpg

DSCN7346.jpg

DSCN7355.jpg

DSCN7354.jpg

DSCN7362.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Day at Sea

We actually ended up sleeping until at least noon. We LOVE the beds on Carnival, super comfy!!! We were hoping to go to lunch in the MDR but didn't have time so that is something to try the next cruise. We got the usual at the buffet and grill. Its amazing how many people are on the ship. There were people laying out everywhere! We did the love & marriage show and the scavenger hunt and then hit the casino! We used some of our refund for our excursion there and I found a slot machine I loved, the Rich Little Piggies. I doubled my credits at one point but of course decided to hit the big money button and got NADA from it! Oh well it was fun anyways. We got some sushi for Mike and then some more! We went to dinner. We went to the disco again tonight, there obviously weren't so many people out tonight since it was the last night but it was still fun.

DSCN7374.jpg

DSCN7379.jpg

 

 

We were given zone 6 debarkation which I found odd since we didn't fly home until Tuesday but we opted to carry our bags off anyways so it didn't matter. I was too tired to pack the night before so i got up and did so the next morning. We were asked to be out of our stateroom by 8:30 am so we gathered our stuff and went to the Lido where we discovered it was raining. Since we were going to our hotel we stayed in the buffet until last call and then headed off. Debark was simple enough, we got in the cab line and we had some issues. We were quickly assigned our cab but I am positive this guy ripped us off. The fare was supposed to start at $2.50 and then go up $.40 per 1/6 mile he added $1 for an additional passenger and then and extra $2 for an unadvertised $1 pp fuel surcharge. He had asked us for our hotel name I said it was the Ocean Reef Hotel and gave him the address, he took us to the wrong hotel and then argued with me that it was the correct one. He said "oh all i heard was ocean so I brought you to ocean drive" SERIOUSLY? We finally got to our hotel, the driver stopped in the middle of Collins Ave and had us get out, we were just happy to be at our hotel. The ocean Reef was nice, $128/ night with tax right on Collins very close to the beach. We were able to check in at 10:30 and were upgraded to a suite since our room wasn't ready. The suite was more of a studio, which is what the regular rooms are, with a divider in front of the bed. Nice accommodations for one night, we would consider staying here again. South Beach was an awesome post cruise day after the rain cleared up we were able to walk the beach, which were filled with regular jelly fish that had washed up along with Portuguese Man of War jellyfish. There are a lot of bars, restaurants and shops along Ocean Ave, all of which were quite busy. We did some souvenir shopping, showered and changed to go out. We had gotten subway earlier so we went to Wet Willies and had some fries which were amazing and some drinks. We went up to the 2nd level and sat outside and had some of their slushie style grain alcohol drinks which were very good. We had the special drinks which were 2 or 3 mixed together. These drinks were as strong as people had left reviews about but you could still feel them. We walked around some more and called it a night. We checked out at 11 the next morning but had an evening flight so they kept our bags for us. We walked around the blocks further back from the beach, ate some lunch and then hung out at the beach collecting shells until around 3. We had arranged for Super Shuttle to take us home using our debit card points. They were there a couple of minutes early and took us right to the airport, traffic wasn't too bad so it didn't take long at all. The driver seemed a little too comfortable driving as he was weaving in and out of traffic( we find this a lot when we travel, kind of scary).the airport wasn't busy, we buzzed through security and our flight home was uneventful.

 

Overall we had an amazing vacation. We did find that the 4 day cruise was too short for us and will continue to take 7 days in the future. The ship was nice as was the itinerary. We were lucky to have such nice weather and a stress free Thanksgiving. Please let me know if you have any questions. Its been about a week since we got back so I have forgotten some things and tried to keep it as short as possible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Love your review. I will be on her Jan 5th doing the same itinerary and am glad that you enjoyed it. Love your pictures as well.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for taking the time to write a great review. We will be on the same cruise Dec 22nd with the same itinerary. It is our first cruise and we wanted to try a short one to see if we liked it. This cruise worked out great with my days off over Christmas. I really enjoyed seeing all of your pictures. Can't wait until our trip.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Enjoyed your review and pictures! Key West is still on my bucket list.

 

 

 

Key West was awesome- although if you stop on a cruise try to get an itinerary that has a longer stop! We are definitely considering a land vacation back there.

 

 

I also have the fun times if anyone is interested or has any questions. I tried scanning them in but it wasn't working at first.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm very interested in the fun times and anything else you have from this itinerary!! If you could, please email it to me at Rosanna0702@me.com or post it here. Thanks again for the great review!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review! We loved the 4 day Destiny cruise. Next, you should try the 5 day- I thought that was even better. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for the review! I too am from Northern VA, and will be on the Destiny w/ my boyfriend in March on the same itinerary! We've been thinking about doing the Key West Pub Crawl. Did you have a little extra time in Key West after, or did you have to go right back to the ship?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I will try to scan and post the fun times tomorrow. The pub crawl was so much fun but we were disappointed that it did take so much time. It started at 10 so we couldnt really do anything before that and then it ended about 12:30... since you have to be back on by 1:30 we were able to walk around some but the line for the trolley back ( if you dock at the naval pier) was beyond long. Our tour guide let us walk around shops while stopped at the different bars and he blows a conch shell to let you know that it is time to go.

 

We are definitely going to either take a cruise with a longer stop or doing an extra couple days there next time pre cruise.

Edited by agc291

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad to hear you had a great cruise. We are thinking of booking a back to back (10 days) over halloween 2012 but because of so many bad reviews we havent yet. Was there anything you didnt like about the ship? and what was your favorite things about the ship? Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For us it really isn't about the ship, we will have a great time regardless! With that being said, I did notice here and there paint was fading on tiles around the aft pool, long lines at the buffet, etc but there was nothing bad about this ship that would make me think that someone wouldn't want to come on this ship. We read a lot about the ship smelling which we didn't experience.

 

We like the layout of the lido with the stadium seating (also on the Victory) but I have seen that a lot of people do not like that. We spend a lot of time on the secret decks and found a couple loungers out there some days. We love ATD but did notice this time that the waiters were somewhat slower than our last cruise. However I cant believe that it takes some people 2 hours from start to finish because of this. We were never in there more than an hour, the dining room was never full so we never had to wait. The crew were always super friendly to us as we walked by.

 

We would cruise on the Destiny again!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AGC- thanks for the email. I have printed and started highlighting things that I do not want to miss. I NOTICE THAT THE PHONE CALLS WERE .99 cents a minute. I hope that's what it is when I get on. I need to check on my husband and digs.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the review & pictures! What was the temp in Cozumel that time of year? It looks like you were wearing a tank top, but was it warm enough for the beach? Thinking about a 4 day on the Destiny 11/8-11/12, Miami to Cozumel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the review & pictures! What was the temp in Cozumel that time of year? It looks like you were wearing a tank top, but was it warm enough for the beach? Thinking about a 4 day on the Destiny 11/8-11/12, Miami to Cozumel.

 

 

We didnt go to the beach so i cant be sure but it was pretty warm. I seem to remember the temps being in the early 80s when we were there. If it helps any, we staying in South Beach a couple days after and there were plenty of people swimming there. Id say the temps were fairly close.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We didnt go to the beach so i cant be sure but it was pretty warm. I seem to remember the temps being in the early 80s when we were there. If it helps any, we staying in South Beach a couple days after and there were plenty of people swimming there. Id say the temps were fairly close.

 

Thanks for the info!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We didnt go to the beach so i cant be sure but it was pretty warm. I seem to remember the temps being in the early 80s when we were there. If it helps any, we staying in South Beach a couple days after and there were plenty of people swimming there. Id say the temps were fairly close.

 

 

Great review. :p Thanks for writing that up. We are heading out may 24th. I would love to see the Funtimes. Would you email a copy to me at rossplumbing@yahoo.com, if you still have them? Thank you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Great review. :p Thanks for writing that up. We are heading out may 24th. I would love to see the Funtimes. Would you email a copy to me at rossplumbing@yahoo.com, if you still have them? Thank you!

 

 

Just sent them out to you. Let me know if it doesn't work and I can rescan and resend them!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review! I noticed it in your sig from another post and had to come check it out. I'm looking forward to my first cruise on Destiny in November :). Again great review and thanks for taking the time to post. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did this itinerary on the Imagination for Thanksgiving 2010 and felt the same way about the times in port. I loved Key West and wished we had more time there. The shops in Cozumel are funny. One guy tried to sell me a pair of earrings for $200. By the time we were leaving, I had a matching necklace, bracelet and a blanket for $50...LOL! Needless to say, I walked..:)

 

I am on the Destiny in May for the 5 day. Loved your review about the ship. I was suppose to be on her in October 2011 but it got chartered. I knew I would be on her someday.

 

Thanks again for the review.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your review, especially of the pub crawl in Key West, we are planning on doing it also.

 

We will be doing the same itinerary on our first leg of our B2B but we will be on the Victory.

 

What time was the pup crawl scheduled for? we will also be departing for 2, just wondering if we would have time to look around before or after the crawl.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for your review, especially of the pub crawl in Key West, we are planning on doing it also.

 

We will be doing the same itinerary on our first leg of our B2B but we will be on the Victory.

 

What time was the pup crawl scheduled for? we will also be departing for 2, just wondering if we would have time to look around before or after the crawl.

 

 

We were docked at the Naval Pier so unfortunately we had to take the trolley to and from the port area so we couldnt do much before the pub crawl. I believe we met up at like 9:30 or so in front of the ship. We walked around in between the bars (the guide will blow a shell to let you know it is time to leave). We also walked around after for maybe 30 minutes. The tour is about 3 hours long. The line to get a trolley back was terribly long, I am not going to lie we cut through a shop and meshed into the line:cool:. Awful I know but I chalk it up to the drinks I had ;).

 

AHHH the Victory, our first ship!!! We are looking to do one of her itineraries once she moves to Miami.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for reading my review and liking it :) I love the Destiny (she gets a bad rap) and this itinerary!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Explore the Night. Sweepstakes - Enter now for a chance to win win a free cruise for two with Azamara Club Cruises!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Community Contests
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×