by P Schroeder
February 12, 2005
Overall I would have to rate the whole Cruising experience this time around on The Glory as a 4 out of 5. We sailed as a Family of 4 with our two teenage sons.
Embarkation went smooth considering how many people need to board the ship. It took 45 minutes from the Bus stopping at the Port Canaveral to being in our cabin. Very smooth operation.
The Balcony cabin set-up for a family of four was very roomy with lots of closet and drawer space for all of our stuff. I recommend the Balcony cabin for the view but not Deck 6. You need to be careful as to what you are located over top of. We were over top of the Amber Lounge and being early to Bed (11:30 p.m.) were kept up most every night.
Open spaces on a ship this size can still be found. Very few people seemed to use the very back of the Lido deck for eating Breakfast in the morning. Very nice view and not many people around. The Hot Tubs at the back of the Lido Deck will be empty in the evening and are Adults only. These hot tubs are not that hot so it makes for a pleasant evening at the back of the ship. If you go forward all the way on either deck 6 or 7 to the left or right there are doors leading to the outer decks. These are small forward decks but no one is out there. Great view at night out the front of the ship in the dark.
The dining and food that we had in the Platinum Restaurant was all well done with very good service. The Serving Team led by Daniel provided top notch service with a smile every evening. We did not think there was any point in going to the pay restaurant.
The Staff on the Glory were all generally cheery with few exceptions. Our Room Steward was a very bubbly kind of guy and attentive to his duties. The room was kept clean and we had the Towel figures done very night. Anything we asked for he took care of.
Shore tours we only took at Key West and Belize. Key West we did the Bike Tour. That was interesting and a nice way to get around. The company had old bicycles that experienced a few break downs holding up the tour. They could use some new bikes.
At Belize we did the Goff's Caye Snorkel Tour and that was great. Well worth the money. They pick you up right from the ship and take you to Goff's Caye a small island right on the Coral Reef about 12 miles form the Ship. The Boat ride is on about a 35 foot boat with 600 HP outboards, so it moves right along. They take you to the Island and you have the choice of snorkelling from the Beach or off the boat. The boat will take you off shore over top of the reef for about an hour of snorkelling. The snorkelling was great with lots of fish and coral structure. The water is warm and clear. The you go back to the island for about an hour and half. It is a beautiful island, right out of a Gilligan's Island show, complete with drinks, snacks, barbecue and souvenirs for purchase. If you have someone in your party that odes not snorkel the trip to the island is worth the price.
In Cozumel we walked off and took a cab into town in the morning. The afternoon we went to Mr. Sanchos by cab. This is a beautiful free beach with nice sand and OK snorkelling. They have different vendors for Beer, snorkelling and water toys etc. The snorkelling is better further out form the middle of the complex. This is our second cruise and both times we have ended up at Mr. Sanchos in Cozumel without being disappointed. Recommend this Beach for a nice afternoon.
In Progresso we just took the Bus into town for shopping. Take the $2.00 per. Person 20 minute tour around town in the funny looking double Decker Bus. It was fun and informative. The stop was kind of interesting due to Progresso being more of an old Mexico town. If you buy a Beer in town, get a Beer strap to hold it around your neck as you walk. It was real hot the day we were there and you needed the Beer. On the way back if there is a line up for the Bus just take one of the Vans for $$, it is way more comfortable. There is shopping back right by the ship and a .99c store with lots of little Mexican souvenirs. Progresso was short stop but and interesting one.
If you overnight in Orlando, before or after, be careful about water damage to Hotels. The Crowne Plaza Orlando Airport still has damage, the rooms smell musty, pool is closed and numerous rooms closed. None of this was forthcoming at time of booking.
Our previous experience with Carnival was on the Paradise when it was the Non Smoking ship. On the Glory, the smokers did not hesitate to throw Butts over the side to either end up on the ocean or on a lower deck ??? Also having Smokers on both side of your Balcony is unpleasant. Carnival could do a better job of splitting up the Non-smokers Cabins from the smoking crowd. I found the Second hand smoke along with the obvious danger of allowing smoking on a ship with 3,000 passengers enough to lower the Glory's overall rating. Still a good value (4 star) for your dollar.