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just returned Elation 4/17-4/24


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Hi everyone. We just returned from a great cruise. If you have any questions I would be glad to answer them. I will be posting a review shortly. One thing I must say is that they have greatly improved the port area in Belize City. It was much more shopper friendly. THis time we went out in the street past the wrought iron gate. It looked scary but we had no problems.

Progresso is now charging $2 for a Corona and last year it was only $1. They quickly learn that we will pay the price. This was also our first time at Paradise Beach and I would be glad to answer any questions you might have.

We have taken 9 cruises so I may have a different perspective from that of a first time cruiser.

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I can't wait to read your review, please let us know when you post it. I will be on the Elation 07/03/05. I want to hear about what you did in each port. How did the ship compare to other Carnival ships? I have sailed on the Celebration and Conquest. Did you bring home a copy of the excursion times and prices? Thanks!



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I'll give you a mini review.Yes I do have a list of excursions. First let me say that I took this cruise same time last year. This year we opted to do our own thing instead of ship excursions. In Progresso we simply walked to the beach and we were there with the Carnival excursion. Of course we had to pay $2 for each corona and $1 for a canned soft drink but we were with everyone else. Many went to the ruins and liked it but said it was VERY HOT. In Cozumel we usually snorkel but this time we took a taxi $12 to Paradise Beach and loved it. It was clean, friendly and had everything, umbrellas, chairs, Trampoline, iceberg, kayaks, jet skis, parasailing, food, drinks, clean bathrooms, shower. When you arrive you have a choice of paying $5 for use of activities or Free chair and umbrella if you buy a drink or food. We opted for the drink and food. We spent the day relaxing on the beach. Not too crowded in the AM but in the PM it was full. Since we did the GOffs Cay snorkel in Belize last year we simply went to Belize City and then back to the ship. Many cancelled their excursions due to sunburn and because they were exhausted. Spoke to those who snorkeled and they had a great time as we did last year. Noticed an improvement in Belize City but not much has changed in Progresso. Except for the inexpensive drinks progresso was not the favorite port. It is very primitive but will probably be like other ports in a few years. The main drawback is the water. Its color is not the beautiful aqua blue because of their location they get lots of silt in the water and it looks green at the beach instead of that beautiful blue by the ship.


As for the ship. I have cruised on the Celebration twice. Once new and once 2 years ago. I always had a great time but the ship is definitely older and lacking some of the things on the newer ships. The Elation was Carnivals first venture into Wood and away from Neon. It is a classy ship and a medium size. Good traffic pattern with the atrium. We loved our cabin on Empress. It was so convenient to everything The largest ship I have been on is the Legend. The Elation is much smaller than the Legend. Since we sailed the Sensation we pretty much knew what the Elation layout would be. Plenty of deck and chair space. Beautiful dining rooms. My son was on the Conquest and said it was always freezing. The Elation was very comfortable.


I must note that this year we stayed on the Empress deck and there were new mattresses, down comforters, new pillows and sheets. We slept wonderfully. We even received new towels. The other decks had the old ones. Perhaps they are giving the Empress deck some extra amenities now or gradually doing this to all cabins.


If you have any other questions please let me know.

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When you were in Belize, where did you have to go on the ship to get your tender tickets? What time did you have to show up to get them? How much longer than the Carnival excursions people did you have to wait after to get off the ship?


Also...there is a time zone difference I think? The cruise info says you are in Belize from 8-6 but the capers say something else....so what time do you have to be back to the ship and not miss it? :)


Thanks for the great mini review. I can't wait to read the long version!

We were upgraded to the Empress level and in the mid ship section...so I am SO glad we get new matts, comforters, etc

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We are leaving in 13 days for a cruise on Elation! Did you find that the beach at Progreso was dirty or had a lot of vendors (enough to be annoying)?? Also, we are trying to decide between Nachi Cocum and Paradise Beach in Cozumel. It's tempting to go with Nachi Cocum because of the all-inclusive price... But, how did you find the prices for food and alcohol at Paradise Beach? Did you talk with anyone that went to Nachi Cocum?


Can't wait!!! Thanks for your input!!



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I don't have the tender insert to the capers but as I remember we left the ship a little after 10 and there was no wait. You turn your watches back an hour Wed. night and then after Belize turn then forward 1 hour. Many excursions leave from the ship as ours did last year and we left about 8:30. I believe that if you wanted to leave before 10 you went to the Mikado lounge early in the AM for tender tickets. If you leave after 10 you don't need them.


Water slide was open every day.


Progresso was cleaner than last year. There are some vendors but they are very polite and not a problem as compared to Jamaica and other islands.


Paradise beach had beer for $3 , soft drinks $2 and mixed drinks about $5. We did not eat there but the prices were reasonable. Did not hear of anyone going to Nachi Cocum. Since there were so many first time cruisers they don't really venture out so most did the carnival Excursions to playa mia. The taxi driver gave us a brochure about all inclusive beaches so you might ask when you get into the taxi. We were not looking for that but the prices seemed reasonable.


We were in E99 and it was a great cabin and great location.

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We are on the same sailing .... what deck is your cabin on?


We are doing paradise beach in Cozumel. I've just heard too many people say only good things about it!


On the Roll call board... there are about 7-8 of us that are sailing on 05/08/05! Come say hi! :)

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We had one last year and I do believe that we had a refrig and there were wine, champagne and drink glasses, a VCR but no tapes available. The Cat 11 suites are not much larger than the oceanview rooms and the balcony looks over a deck where passengers walk. You are not directly on the water as you are on the larger ships. Some have lifeboat obstructed views. The lower numbers have no obstruction. We enjoyed ours but it was different from others we have had.

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I see you've been on Rhapsody and the Elation. Which did you like better? I'm leaning toward Rhapsody because of the different ports. We've been to Cozumel and Playa del Carmen several times and anxious to try something different.

I've always wanted to go to Key West and the Cayman Islands.

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Thanks for the great information! The Elation sounds wonderful, we also have a cabin on the Empress Deck. I would love to see the excursion list...can you email it to me? hilltoptravel@earthlink.net If not, I understand, what is the price of the cave tubing in Belize? I'm leaning towards Paradise Beach for Cozumel, still not sure about Progresso. We will be traveling with 3 adults and 3 boys, 14, 14, 10. I haven't found anything I think they will enjoy for Progresso yet.

Thanks, djk

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Cabe tubing in Belize is $93 per person.


As for Rhapsody and Elation. Rhapsody is a little larger, more glass, Solarium pool area.

Rhapsody also has more balconies. The ship is lovely and the ports are nice except not much to do but shop in Key west( NO BEACHES TO SPEAK OF) and it is very hot in the summer. If you have not been to the Caymans you would like it. But check to see how they are doing after the massive damage due to last years hurricane. I hate to take a cruise and go to a US port that I have vacationed in so Key West was not a biggie for me. Honestly. I paid about $200pp more for the Rhapsody and could not justify it. There is nothing different except Rhapsody is a quiet ship and we saw almost no one late at night. We loved the entertainer Mark Price a former member of the Lettermen and we bought his CD.( I am feeling old) The food was not as good as Carnival but we could always find something to eat. The luggage was interesting. We and many others could not find our luggage on Rhapsody and we walked down the hall and here was this area of luggage thrown in a huge pile and people were stepping on it etc. We found ours and just took it. Never had that problem on Carnival.

What bothered us most was that at any opportunity there was Carnival bashing. If we were asked about previously cruising and said Carnival , the bashing began and we were tired of listening to it in the dining room, on deck and everywhere. I don't bash cruise lines. I tell what I like and don't like. They still think that Carnival serves Hot dogs in the dining rooms and guest are drunk and vomiting in the pools. We did like the Meet and Mingle that only RCCL has. It was ice with drinks and finger foods. Crew was comparable

I thought prices were a little high on RCCL especially for the wine and cheese party.

You can't go wrong on the Rhapsody if you get a good price. If you have only cruised Carnival it would be interesting to see what you think. I think of Rhapsody as a sedate cruise and Elation as a fun cruise and I am 53!. Good Luck deciding. You can't go wrong with either it's just suits you taste! We have sailed the Elation twice but not for the ports for the ship! We have already been to all the there ports in the Eastern Western and Southern carribbean.


My daughter 23 sailed RCCL Serenade and my son 27 sailed Rhapsody. Both agreed that there is nothing to do at night because everything closes down.

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Thanks for the comparison and contrasts. You brought up several points that are important to me. I don't go for the bashing either. I don't always do much night life but want the option. After all I'm on vacation!!

We sailed Elation when she was still doing the Mexican Riviera, and loved the ship. Even a hurricane and several port substitutions didn't dampen our enthusiasm.

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Pirate over 40 .

Let me ask you about the mexican riviera. How is that cruise and when is the best time weatherwise to do it? We usually cruise in April or May now that we have the time. How are the ports?


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