Last Updated on November 26, 2023 by Ray Roman
On June 3rd, we boarded the Carnival Vista to embark on our 7-day Western Caribbean Cruise. Our itinerary included the following ports of call: Roatan, Honduras, Belize, and Cozumel.
We set sail from Galveston, TX, and had decided to arrive in Galveston the previous day to have breakfast at our favorite restaurant Miller’s Seawall Grill.
Morning June 3rd, 2023 (Saturday)
After getting up and about the morning of the 3rd, we checked out of our room and headed to Millers. After a short wait of 45 minutes, we were seated. (PS: A 45-minute wait is short as Miller’s is quite popular, and wait times are usually longer.
We ordered mimosas and their famous Lump Crab Benedict. The Benedict is two over-easy eggs on top of our Lump Crab meat & grilled crab stuffing covered in a smooth Hollandaise Sauce and a side of hash browns.
Embarkation Day 1 (Saturday)
On our last cruise, Tammy scheduled us for an early embarkation, which didn’t leave us enough time to go to the Galveston seawall. On that cruise, we boarded and only had a slight delay boarding. It wasn’t terrible, but it was March, so there were probably fewer travelers.
This time Tammy scheduled us for a 1:30 PM boarding time. The lines were a lot longer this time around. The lines did move at a nice pace, but boarding did take longer than our previous cruise on the Carnival Cream, but there were more passengers, about 5,200, half of which were first-time cruisers.
Suffice it to say Carnival Cruise lines have their embarkation process down to perfection. Though others might have had delays onboarding, you should be fine if you have all your paperwork and your luggage is tagged correctly.
Upon boarding, we headed to the bar for our customary first drink and “muster.”
For those unfamiliar with what “muster” is, it is simply directions on what to do if there is an emergency on the boat, such as where to meet and how to strap your life vest. This used to be tedious before Covid, but now it is simple and takes 3 minutes.
We typically don’t do much on the first day of our cruise. Often we are tired from the previous day’s drive from Lake Texoma. The drive can be anywhere from six to eight hours. We went to our room on this cruise, then headed to dinner. We then returned to our room for a well-deserved night’s sleep.
You can view the menu on our Facebook page.
Day 2 Fun at Sea (Sunday)
Getting to our first Port of Call (Roatan, Honduras) takes about two days, so Sunday was our first Fun Day at Sea.
I’m an early bird, so at around 7 AM, I went upstairs to the Lido Marketplace to have some coffee. The Lido Marketplace is buffet-style. It is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. On the Carnival Vista, it is located midship on the 10th-floor Lido deck.
This is the area where I’ll sit for an hour or two blogging, thanks to Carnival Cruise Line wifi.
Around mid-morning, we headed to the pool to relax, and people watch and have a few drinks. On this cruise, a free Cheers Package was included. The Cheers package allows you up to 15 drinks (spirits, wine, beer) and unlimited premium coffee, soda, etc.
Our Carnival Cruise agent instructed Tammy to buy her Cheers package after boarding. Here is the reason why.
You cannot buy the drink package for yourself if you are cruising with another adult. You are forced to buy the package for every adult in your room. Since I already had my Cheers Pacakge, Tammy had to go to Guest Services and get approval to buy her own after Carnival had confirmed I already had one.
Yes, it is a bit of an inconvenience, but for us, it’s not a big deal as I get offers for free Cheers Packages and a room all the time.
We hung out at the pool for most of the afternoon and met some friendly folks (Delaney, Roman, Elizabeth, and Mad Max, lol.)
In the evening, we went to the Havana Club Karaoke bar, where our new friends did some singing. Then off to the casino for an hour and straight to bed.
Day Three More Fun At Sea (Monday)
Day three of our Carnival Cruise is another Fun Day at Sea. We had lots of expectations for the day. Besides spending most of the afternoon in the pool,, we planned to partake in an 80s music show on the Lido Deck at 9:45 PM.
After the afternoon in the pool, we headed to our room to get some closed-toe shoes, as that is the only permitted footwear if you are going on the Skyride.
After riding the Skyride, we headed to our room to shower and prepare for dinner. We made a quick stop at the casino, then dinner.
After dinner, I convinced Tammy we should walk the ship for a bit, well, that walk cost us $480. One of our favorite adult beverages is Sheridan. Sheridan is a liqueur that was first introduced in 1994.
According to Wikipedia, it’s uniquely bottled, consisting of two separate sections, separated by glass, but fused together. One section is filled with a black liqueur consisting of coffee and whiskey flavors, while the other is filled with a white liqueur of milk white chocolate.
We bought two cases.
Day 3 Roatan Honduras (Tuesday)
Our first Port of Call was Roatan, Honduras. We disembarked around 10 am and headed straight to Mahogany Beach. You can walk to this free beach from the port area or ride a chair lift.
We opted for the chair lift. I’m glad we did; the chair lift view is pretty awesome.
Once on the ground, we headed to Fat Tuesday for a drink. I ordered a pina colada, and Tammy ordered a margarita. Both drinks were delicious. For $17, you get 32 ounces and a souvenir cup which we both agreed was a decent price.
We also ordered some food. The nachos serving was huge and were also delicious. Later in the day, I ordered the jerk chicken with plantain fries, which was also very good.
Once back onboard, we headed to the 12th deck to cheer on the passengers returning late to the ship. The side of the ship with a view of those boarding is usually lined with spectators. It’s a fun spectator sport.
Day 4 Belize
On day four of our 7-day Caribbean cruise, we arrive in Belize. The waters around the Belize port are shallow, so we have to tender from the ship to shore. The tender took 15 minutes and dropped us off at Terminal 2.
We didn’t plan any excursion for Belize and just strolled around the port until we found The Wet Lizard, a small restaurant where we decided to have lunch and a few drinks.
We sat at the bar, where Tammy ordered a pina colada, and I ordered a Belkin, which is the local beer.
Our food order consisted of the following:
- Buffalo French Fries
- Coconut Shrimp with Rice
Day 5 Cozumel
In Cozumel, we decide to do an All-Day inclusive at Mr. Sanchos, with our newly found friends Delanie and Roman. (Yes, his first name is my last name). Mr. Sanchos, as of the writing of this article, is just $68 per adult and includes unlimited food and drinks from their menu.
You get a table, chairs, beach recliners, and your very own server. Mr. Sanchos has several pools, two swim-up bars, a buffet restaurant, music, and more. It is one of our favorite places to go in Cozumel.
During this leg of the cruise, and fellow passenger had a medical emergency. We had already departed Cozumel but had to return to Cozumel (we were already 1 1/2 hours from Cozumel) so the passenger could receive medical treatment.
This created a 3-hour delay.
Day 6 Fun At Sea
On day 6 of our cruise, we thought we would rest in our cabin. It turns out we didn’t. We ended up at the casino for several hours, then the Lido deck pool for the remainder of the day.
Dinner consisted of lobster.
Day 7 Galveston Disembark
As I mentioned earlier our fellow passengers’ medical emergency added 3 hours to our trip. We hoped the time would be made up during Day 6, but we didn’t.
We arrived in Galveston at 10:30 AM instead of the scheduled 8 AM. Due to the next cruise leaving the same day we arrived, we had to leave our room at 8 AM so they could start cleaning. We sat on the 4th deck from 8 AM until we disembarked at around 1:30 PM.
Note: We have been on many Carnival Cruises, and the delay on this cruise has never happened to us before. Carnival runs a tight ship (pun intended), keeping to their schedule; however, passenger safety is critical and takes precedence over schedule.