We're back! Our cruise was 4/29-5/4. It was hubby and I plus our 4 kids (15, 12, 7, 3). I'll try to keep this short and sweet. 😉
Check in was fairly easy.
Our stateroom wasn't what we expected. We originally were going to book 2 connecting oceanviews, but went with the advice of costumer service and got a room that should fit all 6 of us! It was category 1k, suppose to be 351sqft. It was decent but smaller than expected and having 2 bathrooms would've been better. Beds were super hard, and no fan for white noise. 😕
The view out the front of the ship was amazing though!
Food was ok, desserts were awesome. Windjammer is crowded at times but there's plenty of seating. Only complaint is buffet isn't open late enough.
Activities were unfortunately lacking. They had more activities offered during port days which made no sense obviously. Then there would be things going on during the times the kids rooms were closed. Adult shows were often after 10pm, when you would get charged for using the kids rooms (which we didn't do). The last night, there was a farewell comedian in the Royal Theater at 7:15. He was done a little before 8pm. We took our 2 older kids to our room to get their bathing suits on, they went to the pool. Hubby and I went right back down to the Star lounge for an adult show (finally something we could go to). Well, we get there and there's no seats and people were standing! They know this is a popular show, why not have it in the theater?? So we left. 😞
Excursions....in Costa Maya we did the Chacchoben ruins, booked through Native Choice. We really liked it! However, I wouldn't recommend for kids under 10. They just don't care, lol. One of our tour guides were awesome...he kept an eye on our little one so hubby and I could somewhat pay attention to our other guide. Highly recommend them.
In Cozumel, we took the ferry to Playa del Carmen and went to Xcaret. The ferry wasn't bad, 45mins and then a bus ride which was maybe 10-15mins. Xcaret was nice, but again wouldn't recommend with young ones if you plan on doing the river. Our 7 year old did good but our 3 year old, no. We didn't know until just before hopping in the "cold" water while signing the waiver that you can't touch bottom. So we had to not only swim, but take turns swimming while holding a 3 year old. Fun! And, there's bats in the caves!! I'm glad we experienced it, but wouldn't do again. The rest of the park was nice and well taken care of. Took the advice of the tour guide on where to eat, he even walked us there, and he must've known the owner because we ended up spending $100. But unfortunately couldn't find menus with prices before our trip, so oh well.
All in all it was a great trip! Would I do RC again, not sure. The ship was just too big and confusing. Sorry to say, but Carnival are called the fun ships for a reason. 😉 However, the Independence is a beautiful ship, I just would prefer a smaller ship.
P.S. We got to see the Carnival Fantasy again! Sailed on her 5 years ago. Was docked right next to us, it was cool.