In the most nostalgic way possible, this one is a personal one for me! I sailed on the Carnival Horizon with my mom and sister June 25th, 2018-July 3rd, 2018 from New York City, and we had a blast. We are relatively frequent cruisers (this was my 7th) and have been on ships by Disney, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Carnival, and Norwegian. So many people are turned off by cruising because they think they will feel “trapped” or “claustrophobic”. To each their own, but these ships are huge!!!
(Side note: I have such a strangely squishy spot in my heart for cruises…like, I will sit down and watch cruise documentaries for hours on end and I may or may not shed a few tears………permission to judge granted.)
I’ll go into some of the highlights of Carnival’s newest baby, but first feel free to watch these vlog-montage video things created by my sister and I! (I’ll list hers first so she doesn’t get mad. Watch in hd if you can!
Super cute, right? Now here’s mine:
I’m happy to answer any questions that may arise upon seeing some snippets from our trip for your own eyes, but here are a few details about our trip!
Date: June 25th, 2018-July 3rd, 2018
Port of Departure: Manhattan Cruise Terminal (we’re from Long Island so we drove into the city which was an adventure in itself)
Ports of Call: Grand Turk (Turks and Caicos), San Juan (Puerto Rico), Amber Cove (Dominican Republic)
The highlights of the ship are going to overlap with what our favorite parts were, so let’s just jump right in!
#1: Food (duh)
I can’t even break this down by meal because we kind of just ate whenever we felt like it (so like…all the time).
We had breakfast at the Marketplace every morning, which is where you’ll find your buffet as well as some other cool treats throughout the day, including a 24/7 ice cream machine! During lunch they would have these awesome cakes out, and they also had gelato. Buffet selection was good! A lot of people complain but those are presumably picky eaters.
Our favorite place by far was Guy’s Burger Joint. I have no idea what they put in the sauce but wow…………………………wow. People complain about having to wait on line for as long as 45 minutes but we never waiting more like 5 minutes because we didn’t go during peak lunch times.
We were assigned to “Your Time Dining” on this trip which means that for dinner we could go to the dining room anytime between 6 and 9:30 rather than at a set time like many other people did. We only went to the dining room 3 times, but it was nice to take a break from the greasy burgers and pizza and have a healthier meal.
Some of the other food options we took advantage of were Pizzeria del Capitana, Blue Iguana Cantina (another big favorite of ours), and the Seafood Shack.
#2: Pools n Stuff
Now, it feels weird calling a pool on a cruise ship a highlight of a cruise ship because they seem to have gotten smaller as these ships become bigger. Still, it’s where we spent the majority of our time on sea days. We were almost always at the pool on Deck 10 Aft because it was a liiiittle bit less crowded and a liiiiittle more laid back….But who can complain when you’re basking in the sun 10 feet away from a bar in the middle of the ocean, Strawberry Daiquiri in hand?
There’s also a Dr. Seuss-themed water park which at least keeps some of the splash-obsessed kiddies away from the other pools. All ages seemed to be welcome so have at it!
Pictured below is probably the best spot on the ship, but unfortunately for us mere peasants it was only open after 7pm. It is a pool and hot tub area for those who paid for the “Havana” rooms. Totally worth the extra cost in my opinion. My sister and I went for a dip in the hot tubs down there on the first night.
If you can afford it I would definitely recommend getting a balcony stateroom. There is nothing like sitting out there watching the vast ocean go by. We had one on deck 10 (shoutout room 10240), which was awesome because we were just a 30 second walk from the pool, buffet, Guy’s Burger Joint, and Blue Iguana Cantina.
As far as room size goes….look, you’re on a boat with 4,000+ people…you have to know what you’re getting into and be okay with it or don’t waste the money! Our balcony stateroom was able to comfortably fit 3 girls (emphasis on girls because naturally, we all overpacked). It’s no Deluxe Suite but like the entire experience, it’s what you make of it.
So these were the things that stood out to me and that I felt were worth mentioning. Like I said before we are experienced cruisers so we can spot a bad cruise when we see one and this was definitely not one of them! I was ready to book my next one the second I stepped foot back onto the smelly streets on NYC.
I’m happy to answer any questions so do not hesitate to ask!