Three blasts, ropes off, OMG I think we are going to wipe out the bridge ... off we go. Guests on the Green Thunder, others in the pool, as we leave Sydney Overseas Passenger Terminal. Opera House view from the bistro with drinks are flowing. The pilot boat guides Carnival Spirit out of the harbour, and if you are lucky enough, you may catch a glimpse of the pilot changing boats. The odd whale can be seen and game fish, if lucky. Enjoy the blue sea beyond, I found we were always heading east.
Explore the ship time,
Deck 1 Versailles's Lounge. Comedy Club go to the early sitting or the late sitting (no holds barred) or dance the night away at the Dancin' Dance Club.
Deck 2 The Concierge. Purchase upgrades such as unlimited soft drink, and alcohol packages. Book Tours, have photos taken. Watch your day on TV – video available for purchase at the end of the cruise.
Fine Dine at The Empire Restaurant, set dining for Deck 2. The food is superb. Every night, the entertainment is a show stopper, the staff and guests all get involved.
Artists Lobby (purchase is available), Dancin' Dance Club, Lobby and Atrium, Louis XIV Casino, Champions Sports Bar, Club Cool Jazz Club, ATM, Fountain Cafe.
Pharaoh's Palace Main Show Lounge. The shows are spectacular, theatrical and magician shows, if you are lucky enough you may be asked to participate in a show. There are early and late shows to cater for all families. Bingo is also available at additional cost.
Deck 3 The Empire Restaurant has two decks, Deck 3 is open seating. Requests to join a mixed table are no issue (this is only Deck 3). The Empire had two elegant dress nights otherwise it was smart casual.
Serious shopping at The Fun Shops, the Jewellery will make your jaw drop, stunning pieces available for all budgets. Daily specials and raffles, dresses, hats, sunscreen, cigarettes, alcohol something for everyone. You may like to visit the Shanghai Piano Bar, Chapel, Library, Internet Cafe, Kids area – the Jungle, and Pharaoh's Palace.
Pharaoh's Lounge; this is the main entertainment area and is over a few levels. Circle C (Kids Club)
For me, Deck 9 was my one stop area that had it all.
The bistro area, a large communal open space plan, a little bit of everything. Sorry I lie, plates are loaded to the spilling stage as guests sit down to full sea views. La Playa Grille, Lido Restaurant. Bars, two pools and outdoor spas, that are cleaned nightly, sea water is pumped in and out.
Wish to be pampered, have your nails done, Spa Carnival the place for you. This is an additional service. or relax in the child free no go zone, "Serenity".
Activities are constant and varied and are for all ages, some of the favourites are the ice cream challenge, limbo, bean bag toss, spoon on nose, ping pong, golf/basketball challenges, you can do all or you can do nothing its up to you.
Night time activities are often found to be held on Level 9 or you can sit and enjoy the night while being attended to by Carnival's staff. For smokers you can go Level 9 or 10 outdoor, one side only.
Did I forget to tell you, ice cream free all day long. You must try their cocktails - they are unbelievable and you can purchase the glass as a souvenir.
Deck 10 and 11
Nouveau Restaurant (additional cost) , Twister, Green Thunder. Power Drencher, Spa Carnival, Sports Deck, where you can play mini golf (but not on a windy day), basketball at the bow of Level 10. The stern of Level 10 hosts the Power Drencher, for younger kids, Twister (yellow half tube slide) and The Green Thunder, the wildest free fall waterslide. For the faint hearted, try the easy yellow Twister water slide, or for the young at heart, The Power Drencher, with a bucket of water that tips once full.
Through out the entire Cruise liner, in every stairwell are unbelievable showcase stoppers. Each deck is adorned with different art or prints. The lifts provide a fabulous take of the interior design and I love the port holes internally.
Cabins vary we had a 4 berth cabin with balcony, no complaints except not enough sleep due to partying. The cabin staff surprise you every night with a new animal towel.
Carnival Spirit was my first cruise ever and certainly not the last, I had a blast, my son – well, I never saw him except, when he was begging for more Kids Club. Whether you visit the Islands or stay on board I guarantee you the time of your life. Recommend for all families, this is a cruise definitely focused on children.