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Carnival Sunrise review - 4 day Bahamas Feb 2020


geneparmesan
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My wife and I went on the Carnival Sunrise a couple weeks ago for a 4-day Bahamas cruise (Sea Day, Half Moon Cay, Nassau) from Fort Lauderdale. I couldn't find very much info on the Sunrise (other than some good picture reviews from its Bermuda trips out of NY). There are also a lot of negative posts out there, so I wanted to give my view in case someone is considering the ship.

 

Pros:

  • I did not think the ship was too crowded - I was concerned about this from the other feedback I'd read prior to cruising, but there were always pool chairs available, we barely waited in any lines for the buffets, and even the Lido buffet "pinch points" weren't that bad (sometimes you had to wait for one or two people to pass). It was easy to get seats for shows in the main lounge, and we walked right into the late night comedy show without waiting in a line or anything.
  • The refurbished decor was nice. I liked the Atrium area with the stage elevated behind the bar.
  • The Red Frog Pub was huge. It was pretty lively there during trivia, karaoke, and an acoustic band set.
  • Check-in for Your Time Dining on the Hub app was seamless and convenient. 
  • Embarkation was really efficient. I was worried because our arrival appointment time was 12:30pm (later than I would have liked). However, we showed up at about 12:10 and pretty much walked onto the ship - I think it only took 25 minutes from walking into the terminal until we were on the Lido deck.

 

Cons:

  • There was a noticeable lack of music at the back Tides pool. On the first sea day, it was so quiet back there. Another passenger eventually brought out a portable speaker and the rest of the pool were all thanking him.
  • On the Half Moon Cay day, the Tides pool was closed all day. One crew member said it was due to an "issue" with the water, but no one seemed to know when it would re-open (it ended up being that evening). The main pool was showing a movie. So again, there was not a pool to just relax and listen to music. I believe I only saw the DJ at the main Lido pool on the sail-away day. The pools in general were pretty small and the water became "scummy" in both pools by the end of the sea day (due to sunscreen / drinks?).
  • It's ridiculous that Cheers doesn't apply on Half Moon Cay. What a money grab. 
  • The Serenity was only good for relaxing quietly in the seats. The bar up there was often closed, so if you wanted a drink you would often have to walk down many stairs to the main Lido pool bars. There was no pool in the Serenity area, only a hot tub that was too warm for the good weather, and also really awkward to sit in (the benches were too deep or the wrong angle).

 

Others:

  • The flow of the ship was a little disjointed due to the short Promenade that also goes through the casino, but it didn't bother me that much. I feel like on every cruise it takes me a couple days to figure out which decks are the best to walk on to reach different areas of the ship.
  • I didn't purchase the Carnival WiFi package, but in the end I didn't need it as I had cellular service from the Bahamas most of the time (even at times on the sea day).
  • We reached the Bahamas area by the morning of the first sea day, then cruised around the area at high speeds the next 3 days. We were always going 13-15 knots - is that normal even when there's nowhere to "go"? I haven't cruised in a few years, so I can't remember, but we both thought we'd slow down a little at least for the sea day. I took a picture of our cruise map on the TV before debarking (see below).

 

Overall, I liked the Sunrise for the most part. I would book it again if I loved the itinerary/price, but otherwise would probably try another ship just to keep experiencing new things.

 

 

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Thanks for this review, especially because - like you mentioned - there don't seem to be that many reviews of this ship.

 

We will be on her for 9 days starting May 25 and I hope the Tides pool and Serenity are as quiet then as they were during your cruise, since I love to find quiet places to camp out to just read and watch the water slide by. The music around the main Lido pool usually drives me away by late-morning.

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I am glad to hear that you didn't find crowding to be much of an issue and were able to find deck chairs available. I have a Sunrise cruise booked for the fall and agree that the limited feed back on the ship so far hasn't been a glowing endorsement. Your review is helpful, thank you for posting.

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15 hours ago, SRQbeachgirl said:

Thanks for this review, especially because - like you mentioned - there don't seem to be that many reviews of this ship.

 

We will be on her for 9 days starting May 25 and I hope the Tides pool and Serenity are as quiet then as they were during your cruise, since I love to find quiet places to camp out to just read and watch the water slide by. The music around the main Lido pool usually drives me away by late-morning.

You're welcome! I agree, if I were on the ship for 9 days, I would've liked to have a quiet place to relax some days as well, and the Serenity would've been perfect for that. I hope you enjoy your cruise!

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2 hours ago, Denverdonkeys said:

i am here to tell the OP he has a great CC pseudonym!

 

Gene parmesan-

"ahhhhh"

Haha, thanks. I chose this name many years ago when I needed to register to search... Now I'm (happily?) stuck with it, but I'm never sure who recognizes the meaning.

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Thanks for posting this! We leave on 3/26 - taking our grown children and their SOs. We booked the Private Oasis at HMC, so I am mostly excited for that, but I also am anxious about the ship since we haven't taken the kids on a cruise since they were little and it will be very different with them all going their own ways now! 

 

Did they have the 80s party on your sailing? 

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1 hour ago, ohitssunshine said:

Thanks for posting this! We leave on 3/26 - taking our grown children and their SOs. We booked the Private Oasis at HMC, so I am mostly excited for that, but I also am anxious about the ship since we haven't taken the kids on a cruise since they were little and it will be very different with them all going their own ways now! 

 

Did they have the 80s party on your sailing? 

You're welcome! They did have the 80s party on our sailing on one of the evenings - I believe it was in the Atrium lounge, but I didn't attend. I could try to upload the Fun Times later if that helps!

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