Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Travelin' Tuesday: Cruising the High Seas

My first cruising experience set sail back in 1998 and I've been hooked ever since.  I love the inclusion of all  meals, the fun on board activities, and the option to see different islands and ports all within one week.  I love these family vacations because we always have the option to explore on your own or enjoy what is available with the rest of the crew.

Chris' first time on a ship was our last family cruise in 2009, right after we got engaged.  Since the itineraries were similar (two of the ports were the same), the next couple of weeks will include pictures from our 2009 trip as well as the one we took a couple of weeks ago.

The rooms on a cruise ship range from inside (with no windows) up to awesome suites.  I've roomed in an inside and can honestly say that I felt like I lost so much time on that trip.  This was due to sleeping in and thinking it was still early (because it was so dark in the room) and then learning it was actually almost noon. I'll always remember one cruise with Corinne's family where Corinne and I had to run to the spa because we overslept for our massages.  I have wised up over the years and now remember to bring a portable alarm clock just in case, and have also shelled out a little extra money for outside cabins (ones with a window)

or balcony rooms.

The rooms on Carnival are pretty generous in size (for a ship) with two twin beds, that can be pushed together to make a king, and a sitting area with a couch and chair.

Every night a daily guide of the following day's activities will be placed in your room with a cute towel animal.

They have everything from pool contests, trivia and bingo to karaoke, wine tastings and the casino.  Some of those activities are free while others come at a minor cost, such as bingo, a mixology class, wine tasting and the casino.

Food & Wine Pairing

Mixology Class

With our favorite master mixologist Ioana

Martini Tasting

The meals on board are pretty tasty...then again, I would enjoy anything when I don't have to cook for a week.  Some of my favorites:

Strawberry Bisque, Lobster & Shrimp, Warm Chocolate Melting Cake, A study in Sushi

On this past cruise, I really wanted to try some foods that I have never tried before.

Cured Salmon & Candied Tomato, French Onion Soup, Chateaubriand, Smoked Duck & Caramelized Oranges

Carnival has started to incorporate a specialty dining restaurant that you can opt to enjoy for $30.  The delectable meal is a special treat and great for any celebration.

Chef's starter of Salmon & Parmesan, Ahi Tuna Tartare, Shrimp Cocktail, Surf & Turf

Caramelized Washington Apples

Our latest cruise ship, Carnival Liberty, was one of the first ships to go through the 2.0 upgrades with features such as the BlueIguana Cantina with made to order burritos and tacos (a favorite of Chris')

Guy's Burger Joint, with a menu crafted by Food Network personality Guy Fieri

Serenity, which is an adult only retreat area

And several nice bar areas like the EA Sports bar, Alchemy Bar where you can create your own concoction from their unique ingredients, and the Piano Bar.

While the ship is an experience in itself, traveling to exotic locations is the part I love most about cruising. Stay tuned for a look at each port and our exciting excursions.

Have you ever cruised before?  Were you a fan?


  1. Ohhhhhh cruises! My favorite! We are heading off for one in July and I cannot wait - there is NO other way to vacation, in my opinion!

    1. I hope you share pictures from yours! Love reading about other cruises and what people like to do on them :)

  2. you are cruising machines! seems like you guys make the absolute most out of your trips--how fun!

    1. We try! Even though it looks packed, I definitely had time for some naps and relaxing on that trip :)

  3. I LOVE cruise food! I was just like you, had to try all sorts of things I knew I'd never get a chance to try at home!

  4. Ahh, I want to go on a cruise, the food looks delicious! Id probably just eat the whole time >.>

  5. I love cruises. I haven't been on one in awhile. The Disney one has been my favorite so far. The food really is good!

  6. I've always wanted to go on a cruise, but my husband gets so sea sick he can't even sit on a surf board :-( Great recap!