I recently traded my scrubs for a swimsuit and enjoyed a Spring Break vacation with my Husband. We dubbed this trip a “late Honeymoon” and Graduation Present to one another, all in one. We spent most of our time eating and resting – a perfect vacation in my opinion! Our cruise was a short – 3 day cruise, but with both of our busy schedules, it was exactly what we needed.
Here are some tips if you’re thinking about taking a Carnival Cruise:
- Do everything the ship has to offer – or don’t! The cruise has activities planned for literally every hour of the day and night. It’s tempting to get caught up in all that’s to offer and want to do everything. We did a few things each day, but didn’t do so many of the activities that we were worn out. What we needed was a break – not busier days than we already face! So my advice is to take advantage of the activities offered, but remember what vacation is all about – rest and yummy food . . .
- Explore the food options. We loved dressing up for dinner each night and going into the Dining Room for a fancier dinner. This is where we were able to try new and different foods. Our three dinners included escargot, roasted duck, fried alligator, crab ravioli, shrimp, and scallops. These dinners, which would typically be incredibly expensive, were included in the price of our cruise. We loved leaving the table without ever seeing a bill. However, you don’t ever have to dress up if you don’t want to! Room service is free! And an all you can eat buffet, with more options than you could ever imagine, and it’s very casual. You can also eat multiple meals each evening, or order multiple entrees. No one bat’s an eye.
- BYOB – Bring Your Own Bottle. I have a plastic water bottle that I refill and drink from literally every day of my life – that I somehow managed to forget when we went on our cruise. Which was a real shame because in the middle of the night one night, I was so thirsty that I caved and drank the $4 bottle of water that came in our mini bar. (Yes, $4! Ouch!) If only I had that stinkin’ water bottle. I could have filled it with ice cold water at any one of the dozen drink stations throughout the ship. I won’t make that mistake again.
- Get off the boat. The shore excursions offered by Carnival are some of the best (and safest!) ways to see the island. We had an absolute blast snorkeling one of the reefs just off Nassau.(Check out the Video my Dad made for us using the videos we took with his GoPro.) We also enjoyed exploring the Straw Market and buying souvenirs from the locals. The best way to see your port is to explore it – but always use good judgement and common sense when it comes to being safe.
- Take lots of pictures. The ship has photographers set up every evening, plus when you get on the boat initially and when you get off the boat at port. They will take your photo for absolutely free. Let them! It’s a lot of fun, the photographers are so kind and funny, plus you can see your photos the next day. There’s no pressure to buy them, but buying them is a sweet souvenir to take home. Also, take lots of your own photos. Drew and I really disconnected from our phones while we were on vacation, but I wish we had taken more of our own photos.
Bonus tip: Get your passport if you don’t already have one. You can cruise with just a valid drivers license and a birth certificate, but having a passport was much easier, and much quicker to get back into The States with. Plus, having a passport literally puts the world at your fingertips. I know after spending as much money as we did on our passports, we better get lots of use out of them!
I highly recommend a cruise for your next vacation, especially if you only have a short period of time to go. It was affordable for the two of us and really easy to plan! I’m already planning our next vacation, even though it will be awhile before we can take another trip, due to both of us starting our careers soon. Until then, I’ll be daydreaming of white sand and blue water!
Have you ever cruised? What advice would you offer future cruisers? What are your vacation recommendations for us?
“Many waters cannot quench love…” – Song of Solomon 8:7