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Fresh off the Fascination


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Just got home after a 4 day cruise on the Fascination. We arrived at the Jacksonville Port around noon and we were on the ship and eating in the Lido deck by 12:20. The absolute smoothest embarkation I have ever had. The rooms were ready at 1:00, and we were settled in and waited on the muster drill. Then it was time for the sail away. We cleared the inlet, and the cruise was underway. The next afternoon, we were in Freeport, and we chose to stay aboard and sun and have a massage. They offered a three treatment special for $129, which was reasonable for the services rendered. That night was elegant night, which we chose to not deal with, as this was a cruise to rid ourselves of stress and didn't want to dress up. The third day was a stop in Nassau, and Carnival was pushing its excursion to "Barmoral Island" we opted for the deluxe, which included a lunch and one free non-alcoholic beverage. This was sold as a private island, with a white sandy beach, with chairs and umbrellas, cabanas for a fee, and a plunge pool. After a 15 minute walk around the pier to the boat which was waiting for us, it was a 25 minute ride with 100 of your closest friends. The weather was spotty, and we hit rain on the way to the island. Once we arrived, we observed that we actually shared the island with Sandals resorts, but there was a wall separating our side and the Sandals side. Although the staff was top notch and did their best to provide entertainment, and the facilities were new, we noticed some thing lacking. There were plenty of rocks just out past the waterline to make the swimming unenjoyable. Some parts of the facilities were unfinished, such as where the sidewalk was missing a 25 ft. spot. There was also a lack of beach equipment. The only water sports offered were masks and fins for rent at $25. Frozen drinks were $14.95 each and an up charge of $2.00 if you wanted alcohol! ($16.95 +gratuity) meals were $11.00-$14.00 each and consisted of burgers, fries, hotdogs, and chicken tenders. The only up to it was you used you sail and sign on the island too. They also offered a dolphin experience, which we did not choose to do, which was open to view and only about 20 yards from the beach swimming area. I turned my camera to catch some shots of the dolphins doing aerial tricks and quickly had a staff member tell me no photos allowed. When I didn't turn away, they came over and stood right in front of me. The worst part was there was no way back to the ship until he allotted time had elapsed and the boat came back. So, that was $119.95 for the two of us, that we could have saved and stayed on the ship and had more fun. Guest services had only sympathy for us not enjoying our excursion. If they had not had this as a featured tour, we would have chosen something else. The remainder of the cruise was wonderful, my DW actually struck a $180.00 payout on the penny slots, so I guess we are even with the excursion issue! Debarkation was the same as every cruise we have been on, out of your room by 8:30 and waited until our zone was called, which was about 9:55. We enjoyed it and made some new friends along the way! Oh yea, and for the NFL fans, they do not have the Sunday ticket, so you only get the network games out of the Miami, FL market.



Sea Ya!

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Bummer to hear about Balmoral. I have this excursion booked on my breeze cruise next week. It's gotten really mixed reviews. I'm thinking of canceling and just going to Junkanoo beach.



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