Find out what a cruise on the Carnival Vista is really like…
Recently we were lucky enough to be invited onboard the Carnival Vista to experience first hand what the ship and Carnival experience is really like. Over the past several months we’ve booked hundreds of passengers holidays on the Vista so we thought we’d ask one of the group, Sam (our Product Manager) to share her memories of the trip with you so that you’ve got even more reason to be excited about your holiday on the Carnival Vista.
We travelled from London Gatwick to Rome and were picked up from Rome Fiumicino Airport and transferred to Civitavecchia cruise port via coach which took around 1hr 20 mins. We boarded the Carnival Vista and were allowed some free time to visit our cabins, freshen up and have lunch. We had balcony cabins on deck seven overlooking the Havana Cabins which are a new grade of cabin for the cruise line. Our cabin was spacious and light and a big plus were the USB hubs to charge your phone (always handy if you manage to forget your adaptor!).
After freshening up, we made our way to the Lido deck for a bite to eat, and were enticed by the amazing smell of Guy’s Burger Joint – we each decided on a Cheese Burger and Guy’s Special Fries. In the burger joint area you’ll also find a topping station where you can load your burger up with extras like onions, mushrooms and sauces. Guy’s Burger Joint is one of the most popular eating spots onboard and whilst you might find there to be a queue when you walk by, it does go quickly and it’s well worth the wait! For those of you who haven’t heard of Guy Fieri who’s behind the burger joint in collaboration with Carnival, he’s a hugely popular American celebrity chef, author and TV presenter.
After eating, we made our way to the theatre for a safety briefing and then on to the Limelight Lounge where we were welcomed with cocktails by the always brilliant Carnival Fun Team and the fantastic Cruise Director Matt Mitcham (who we actually met on the Carnival Breeze too!). Matt is one of the best Cruise Director’s you’ll find across the industry (look out John Heald) and he knows how to get everyone involved. You can check out his Facebook page here.
After our drinks reception we were free to explore the ship. Here’s some of the photos we captured on our tour:
We met for dinner at Reflections restaurant. The menu was fantastic and has lots of choice for everyone! Options included prawn cocktail, crab cakes, steak, chicken, soup and of course the absolutely divine (made famous by Carnival) ‘Melting Chocolate Cake’ for dessert. We were pleasantly surprised by the evening entertainment which was a magician who made his way around the tables showing cruisers his mind boggling tricks.
After dinner, we made our way to Ocean Plaza where the cruise director Matt was hosting a game – ‘name the song’ – this is a really fun way of getting everyone together and there were lots of laughs! The game ended with a DJ joining in, he then continued playing a brilliant selection of music into the early hours and lots of people spent the evening here dancing the night away.
When the DJ finished playing, the go to place was the casino – it was filled with lots of passengers placing bets into the small hours!
Today the Ship docked at Naples and we had the opportunity to disembark the ship and explore at our leisure. First though, the Carnival team had planned some fun activities for us – a lap around the thrilling SkyRide, a tour of the Red Frog brewery (whilst sampling of course!), a day pass to the amazing Cloud 9 Spa or an experience of the fantastic IMAX and Thrill Theatre.
I chose to experience the SkyRide and to take the Spa Day Pass. We met at the SkyRide at 11am and I was absolutely petrified but determined to try out the SkyRide! I was firstly presented with a full body harness which freaked me out at first, but I felt much safer when the harness was actually clipped to the bike itself! To get around the SkyRide track you have to peddle – a lot! But once I got into it, it wasn’t so bad! Just remember to use the breaks when you get to some of the downhill sections!
After the SkyRide, I went for a tour of the Cloud 9 Spa where I picked up my day pass. The spa is beautiful and spacious – there are lots of areas for passengers to lounge and 5 different Sauna’s/Thermal Rooms to choose from! The best thing about the Spa for me was the Thalasso Therapy Pool – it was just amazing and completely relaxing!
After our tour of the spa, we decided to disembark and explore the city of Naples for a couple of hours. Naples is a great city to explore on foot and appreciate the Italian culture. The shopping opportunities are also particularly great here. I would suggest that if you have a full day at Naples, you take a tour to Pompeii, Positano or even venture further afield to the beautiful Island of Capri!
We decided to head back to the ship for the afternoon and take advantage of the beautiful spa, as this was a port day the spa was much quieter than what you would find on a sea day – this was great for us as we had the spa area pretty much to ourselves most of the afternoon.
The spa started to get a little busier the closer it got to sail away, we decided to grab a small bite to eat at the buffet restaurant and spend some time by the main pool. There are a choice of two pools onboard the Vista – the main pool at the middle of the ship and a second pool at the aft of the ship. The choice of two pools as well as several hot tubs means that guests onboard are more spread out, giving you more space and peace and quiet.
We chose the main pool – this was partly because of the entertainment that was played on the big screen and partly because of the easy access to the Red Frog Rum Bar and the Blue Iguana Tequila Bar! Both were VERY popular!
It is also worth mentioning that in the evening the main pool area is sometimes used for Carnival’s ‘Dive in Movies’ where you can relax on a lounger with free, freshly popped popcorn to watch some of the latest films to enter the box office.
For our evening meal, we had been invited to the speciality restaurant ‘JiJi’s Asian Kitchen’, so retired to our cabins to prepare ourselves for dinner at 7pm. After arriving and being seated at Jiji’s, we were talked through the menu by a fantastic waiter who knew everything there was to know about the cuisine. He answered every question we threw at him and we valued his recommendations. As we were guests of Carnival, we were offered a sampling menu so that we could try a little of everything. The highlights for me were the Nanjing Style Duck starter, the Kung Pao Chicken Main, the Himalayan Basmati Fried Rice and the absolutely mouth-watering Rose Crème Brulee dessert. The food at JiJi’s Asian kitchen is probably the best I have had at sea and I cannot recommend it enough!
After dinner, we decided to head to the Red Frog Rum bar where we played some Foosball – this was extremely popular with some of the American guests and things soon got competitive! We then made our way to Havana Bar where we enjoyed a live Spanish band – the atmosphere was incredible and the dancing was out of this world!
Today was a Sea Day, but also one of my favourite days as it gave me an opportunity to really experience the ship! I spent the day visiting every area of the ship possible, including the Thrill Theatre, The Warehouse Video Arcade (I’m a big kid at heart!) and the Cherry on Top Sweet Shop. There is so much to do on this ship, you could easily spend a whole day exploring each of it’s unique areas, those travelling with children can be rest assured that there is an abundance of things for little ones to enjoy onboard.
After a thorough self-tour of the ship, I retired to the main pool area – where there was a big party going on!! Cruise Director Matt Mitcham, was hosting a dance along by the pool and the DJ was playing the most amazing feel good music to get everybody in the mood for a party!! When the dancing had calmed down, I decided to re-fuel with a burrito from Blue Iguana Cantina – these burritos are to die for! They are so fresh and yummy my mouth waters just thinking of them.
For our last evening aboard the Vista we were invited to experience the highly regarded Fahrenheit 555 – I had heard that this is the place for the best steak at sea, and I must say I agree! The food and service was outstanding and well worth the cover fee as a speciality restaurant. To start I decided on the Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail (served in a Martini glass for added effect), the Broiled Filet Mignon with a side of Sautéed Mushrooms and Three Peppercorn Sauce for my main and the gorgeous Caramelized Washington Apples for dessert.
After dinner, we decided to head to Liquid Lounge and watch the show – ‘Flick’ – I won’t give away any spoilers, but the show was fantastic and the presentation amazing! Liquid Lounge transforms into the nightclub when the show is over, we decided to stay here for the evening and make the most of our last night aboard dancing into the night and making lots of friends!
I had the best time aboard the Carnival Vista, this ship has something for all ages and a range of activities from the more relaxing to the fantastically thrilling!
If you’re interested in a cruise with Carnival, take a look at our deals page for the cruise line.