The Ship - Carnival Dream
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- My mom, sister, and I went on the Carnival Dream cruiseline on Oct 15-21st. We went to Cozumel, Belize, Roatan, and Costa Maya. I've never been out of the country before and this was my first cruise, and it was amazing. This was my mom's third and sister's second. If you ever get the chance to go on a cruise, I so highly recommend it! So much food and amazing shows and I can't even begin to go into what all you can do just on the ship itself and not adding in all the ports.
So this is a map of where our cruise ship went, in case you were like me and had no idea where any of those locations were!
And here is the ship! It is currently the biggest ship in the Carnival line, though I think another is getting released soon (or might have been recently? Not sure). It dwarfed all the other ships at the ports and it was unreal to see in person. You do a hell of a lot of walking on that ship.
The Dream compared to another Carnival ship, the Elation.
Here is our room, minus the bunk bed that came down from the ceiling on the right side. I slept in the bunk bed.
Here is the Atrium of the ship, and the picture does not do it justice. It was so bright and shiny and colors everywhere. The elevators changed colors and there was a piano on the winding glass stairs and it was just incredibly pretty.
The casino, which was quite large. I'd never really gambled before and put $20 into the machines. Ended up with a $100 profit so I'd say I did well!
This is the Encore! theatre, where all the shows were held. They had 5 shows during the week and it is incredible how well the cast are able to perform on a constantly rocking ship, and since there were really only two singers they sang all of the songs on the roughly 50min long productions, twice a night. Don't miss the shows and get there plenty early so you can get a seat if you ever go!
This is the dining room where we had our sit down dinners every night. Aptly called the Crimson Dining Room, it was very very red. We had the best seats in the house by some stroke of luck. See that first table on the picture, the one right at the foot of the stairs? That was us. The waiters and Maitre d' would do the shows there during dinner and we had the perfect view.
Here is my family and our table mates, some really nice people from South Carolina. My sister is on the left, I'm in the middle, and my mom is on the right.
Speaking of the Maitre D', here is ours. I think every lady (and probably a few men) wanted to stuff him in their luggage and take him home. He is from Ukraine and I am sad that we did not get a better picture of him.
A few of the water slides onboard the ship.
This is one of the chairs on the adult only deck, Serenity. Possibly the most comfortable thing aboard that ship.
Towel animals! They made us a new one every night.
The really neat looking sushi bar.
I'm in the middle of this shot, though you can't really tell. I went up to participate in one of the trivia game shows, unfortunately this round had to do with music that was mainly from the early 70s, long before I was born. The other two contestants were just as stumped as I was though so the audience was answering most of them lol.
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- Our first port was in Cozumel, Mexico. It was rather pretty and had some neat shops, though we didn't have much time for shopping here sadly. The excursion we had booked was called Adventure Park - Zip-lining and Snorkeling. I have never gone snorkeling and it was insanely fun, though sadly I don't have pictures of it currently as we haven't got the underwater film developed yet. The guides were great fun and so nice. They brought fish food with them and would toss it at people so the fish would flock around you. They pointed out several critters, including a baby moray eel, some lobsters, starfish, and best of all a sea horse. They dragged a couple of us down to where the sea horse was anchored to let us get a closer look. It was a male seahorse carrying the eggs! Very neat.
The zip-lining was fun though not really actual zip-lining. There were four tall concrete climbing walls spread on the beach with various zip-lines and rope bridges strung between them.
There's the port of Cozumel. Not a very attractive port from far away, lotta construction going on around the beach.
The shopping area was rather nice though and I'm sad we didn't get more time to poke around.
As we got off the boat they had a pirate on stilts with a skeleton puppet that you could get your picture taken with. My mom, me, then my sister.
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- I couldn't believe how utterly poor Belize was. I saw houses that were little more then two walls and a leaning roof, or just a frame covered by some cardboard. I complain about milk prices being high here in America whenever I go to the store, but a single half gallon will cost you $6 over there. A single tube of chapstick was $4. It was just unreal seeing how the people over there lived.
My sister and I went on a Mayan cave tour, which was incredibly fun. We had a little over an hour bus trip to get to the caves and the road was nothing but loose gravel almost the entire way. It had just rained in Belize for a couple days straight so the mosquitoes were horrible and even with spray I had approximately 50 bites on my legs and arms. Needless the say I itched the rest of the cruise Once we got in the caves though there weren't any, thanks to the multitude of bats flying around. On this tour we got to do a bit more authentic zip-lining, repelling, etc. It was a lot of fun but I wish trekking through the caves and been a bit longer.
We had to take boats (called tendering) to the port on Belize since it wasn't nearly big enough. We "parked" quite a ways out and had about a 20min ride each way.
Sister and I in our gear, getting ready to head to the caves. And a walking happy meal for the thousands of mosquitoes at the moment.
See that water jug? Ancient Mayan technology right there!
Inside the cave. Kinda crappy shot, but well, it was dark!
We saw hundreds of these guys flying around.
Me climbing down a set of ladder rung things.
Zip-lined through the cave.
And through the forest.
Here is a nursery there.
Their police station. I guess crime is very low there and on average there is less then 40 people in jail at any one time.
Pray you never have to go into a retirement home in Belize!
The zoo was very nice however! My mom went on the zoo tour while we hiked in caves. Most of the animals were rescues and used to people so the keepers could get them to do tricks and such. You were very close to all the animals, as you can see by the simple chain link fence in the Jaguar exhibit.
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- Roatan was kinda a bummer. The night before it was a literal downpour. The floor above us flooded when water gushed in through the balcony doors! As such we didn't get into port until very later in the day and all the excursions were cancelled. We were able to get off and go shopping for a little bit however and it was by far the prettiest port we saw. We ported at Mahogany Bay.
There were also a lot of nice shops around.
You can see the beach had taken a beating and there were downed trees everywhere. The beach was littered with seaweed and crap from the ocean so we just walked along it for a little bit.
Making friends with a pelican.
Not sure what i was doing, but it is an amusing picture.
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- Costa Maya wasn't terribly exciting sadly. We didn't have any excursions booked here so just wandered the area for a few hours. It was neat, but most of the stores had all the same touristy stuff so shopping wasn't great.
Port. We had a very long walk from the ship to the city. That was only half of the pier, it had a turn on there.
Neat little free swimming pool with a swim up bar.
They had a swimming with the dolphins excursion and you could sit right outside the beach area and watch it all.
All those stunning pictures in his booth? Made with spray paint. I'd never seen anything like it and I never imagined that anyone could do such amazing things with a can of paint. There were all sorts of different scenes from tropical islands to waterfalls to space and planets. I bought two of the paintings, one he had already made (the waterfall on the top corner with the sold sign) and commissioned one. Took him about 10 minutes to actually make and when he was done about three people wanted to buy it then and there. Wish I was half as talented as this man is.