Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Carnival Conquest Review Part 3

This edition of my review will cover the entertainment and ports of call.

The Entertainment:

Boo!  That should pretty much sum it up.  There were 4 comedians onboard during this cruise.  One was very funny (Mutzie), one was ok and 2 were simply awful.  This was also the first cruise out of 6 where there was not some form of show every night in the main theater.  They opted for “adult laser tag” instead on some nights.  But after watching a couple of the shows...I see why.  They tried to make up for the lack of dancing and singing talent by wearing practically nothing (at least for the ladies in the production).  These were not family shows.  These were Vegas showgirl style shows.  I am sure the costumes cost a lot of money, but maybe they should try to pay for better performers instead and go with cheaper costumes.  We always try to see the shows, but we missed at least 2 of them on this cruise and we wish we would have missed at least 2 of the comedians and one more of the shows.  We have seen a lot of shows at sea and these were the worst by far.

The cruise director was heard but not necessarily seen.  All of my previous cruises had a cruise director that would come out before each show and talk to the crowd and joke and sort of get things started.  Not on this cruise.  Chris Jefferson would be heard over the speaker as an intro voice, but rarely made an actual appearance.  The same was true for the comedy shows.  You would hear an announcement by him before the show, but it was always one of the assistants doing the actual introduction.  They played Bingo in the main theater every night right up until it was showtime. 

The musicians were good.  The calypso band (duo) that played out by the pool were excellent and kept things “groovy” as they liked to say.  The best entertainment we found on board was us actually going down the water-slide which was a real hoot for us.

But the overall entertainment onboard gets a C- grade and that is me being nice.

Ports of Call:

Jamaica.  We have been to Jamaica before so our intent with this port was to hop off the ship, buy some goodies in the cruise ship center, and hop back on to take advantage of a practically empty ship.  We stuck to our plan and did just that.  Jamaica is not a port that I feel visitors should get out and explore on their own.  Safety is a concern and I only recommend doing “planned and organized” excursions through reputable companies.  We heard a few comments from folks who did planned excursions and some were not thrilled with how far most excursions are from where the ship docks in Montego Bay.  Jamaica is not our favorite port which is why we opted to take advantage of the quiet ship

Grand Cayman.  In contrast to Jamaica, this is a port that is easy to get out in and explore on your own.  We opted for a nice leisurely day of shopping so we waited until about 9:30am to try to tender into shore.  Carnival’s tendering process went very smoothly.  We were actually “anchored” very close to shore compared to some of the other ships in port that day.  We were onshore in about 10 minutes.  We took in some of the scenery, shopped and then found “Breezes” for lunch.  You get good food and a GREAT view from Breezes so I recommend checking them out the next time you visit Grand Cayman.  The cruise lines need to skip Jamaica and offer an overnight stay in Grand Cayman my opinion.

Cozumel.  I love the Puerto Maya area where our ship docked.  Good places to eat right there by the pier and lots of shopping.  We chose to do an excursion that we booked through  We took a short 5-10 minute taxi ride ($10 each way) to the Fiesta Americana where we had full access to their pools and beach.  Lunch and open bar was also included.  The staff at the resort were great.  The food was good and it was a great day.  It was a bit windy, but still warm and enjoyable.  Give a try when looking into excursions.

Stay tuned for part 4 in which I will summarize the experience and give my overall grade. :)

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