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wannacruise

Carnival Pride - Mexican Riviera

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I'll be booking my first cruise soon. Taking the Carnival Pride to the Mexican Riviera in January 2006. We will be docking in Cabo San Lucas, Puerta Vallarta and Mazatlan. Has anyone been on this cruise? Any tips or advice? Did you like the ship - food/service etc.? What excursions did you go on?

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Loved the Pride. Our first cruise was on the Glory - and she is very large and kind of confusing - but then - so am I lol. The Pride is beautiful - very easy to get around - and the artwork - very educational - especially the more than life sized statue of David - parts of him almost smack you in the eye when you take the glass elevator (yes- those are the parts I mean!) We did Randy's Happy Horses in Mazatlan - I would recommend this one to anyone - great way to see the area and the ride was great! The Jungle tour in Puerta Valarta was kind of cheesy - I would have rather just taken a cab into the old town area. We did whale watching in Cabo - whales were scare but the tour of the shoreline and Los Arcos made for some great photo ops. And it was all you can drink as well. Afternoon tea was really nice- food in both the dining room and buffet was very good. Lots of bacon for breakfast at the buffet and really good deli sandwiches as well. If you want milk just ask for it and the will give you those little cartons! And must have - the omeletes - cooked to order at the buffet - yum! Warning - you will gain weight! So pack some stretchy clothes for the way home The Casino was very generous to us as well! ANy questions just ask away - congrats on your booking! TTFN Jennifer

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We were on the Carnival Pride last September. Finally, Carnival has put one of their better ships on permanent duty for those that travel from the left coast.

The Pride is a Spirit Class ship, which IMO, is the best Carnival has. At neary 90,000 tons, it's large enough, has only 1 main dining room which makes getting around the ship much easier, has 80% outside cabins and 80% of those have balconies. For a Carnival ship, it's very pretty.

Staff aboard the Pride is excellent and the food is much better than Carnival used to offer. The Pride has several dining options: The Normandie Restaurant, Mermaid's Grill, Outdoor Lido grill and David's Supper Club. Mermaids layout is a little confusing, but offers quite a bit including 24 hour pizzeria, deli, sushi bar, chinese kitchen plus the usual buffet fare. I liked the minute steak sandwiches at the outdoor Lido grill.

The entertainment is typical Carnival. If you've been on a Carnival Cruise, you know what I mean. If you haven't, it'll be new to you.

Puerto Vallarta has many fun things to do. Las Caletas, Canopy Tour, party boats, tequila factory tours, shopping, jungle tours etc. There's an outdoor restuarant in the jungle that we really enjoyed. I can't recall the name, but any tour van driver will know.

In Mazatlan I, like every other person, highly recommends Randi's Happy Horses. She is a blast and the best value for your money. $49 pp includes all transportation from the ship to Stone Island, a nice ride on the beach and through a coconut plantation and your first drink at Victors. Some people have had trouble recently making reservations through her website. Email her directly at randi@randishappyhorses.com. The rest of Mazatlan is ok, there's some nice beaches at the Golden Zone, which is about a 20 minute cab ride. Randi's drivers will take you there.

Cabo is great. The Pride spends more time there because her cruising speed is 3-4 knots faster than ships from Princess, Royal Caribbean and NCL. Lover's beach at Land's End is nice, there are alot of places to party like Cabo Wabo etc. and the place is just plain laid back. You'll really enjoy Cabo.

Embarkation: You can do early check in aboard the Queen Mary. They'll give you your sail/sign card and handle all of your docs. Take time and tour the Queen Mary. You can get a nice view of the Carnival Pride if you take the Promenade deck all the way aft. When it's boarding time, you just have to pass security and pose for the first of many DUMB photo ops ($$$ for Carnival). Boarding times vary a lot in Long Beach. I don't think the customs is very efficient there. Depending on when they clear the ship from the previous cruise, boarding can start as early as 11:30 or as late as 1:30.

Disembarkation is SLOW. I think it's totally random. We weren't off the ship until 11:30.

You'll have a great time. The Pride is a nice ship, the itinerary is fun and the people on board are fun. A good cruise is what you make of it.

We'll be on the Pride in two weeks (4/17). We had such a good time in October, that we're taking my parents and our kids.

Any more questions, just ask.

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