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September 13, 2013
by Keith Henderson
Image: Carnival Legend © Keith Henderson
My wife and I sailed on the Carnival Legend leaving on September
13th, 2013 out of Dover, England as a 12-day cruise to several
ports around and near the British Isles. The cruise's original
itinerary had us leaving from Dover, England with stops in five
countries that started with Norway (Stavanger), then Scotland (Invergordon,
Edinburgh, and Glasgow), Northern Ireland (Belfast), Ireland
(Dublin), and France (Le Havre) before returning to Dover. It
was to be our first visit to Norway, Scotland, and Northern
This was our 6th cruise with Carnival and 21st overall. We have
sailed with Norwegian Cruise Line 14 times and Royal Caribbean
We had booked this cruise as soon as it was listed by Carnival
in mid-2012. I have always wanted to visit Scotland. Finding an
affordable cruise that let us start in England and see so many
ports around the British Isles was very appealing. We do not
understand why the major cruise lines do not offer these more
often. Our only concern was the length of the cruise which made
it the longest trip we had ever attempted. The Legend is a
sister ship of the Carnival Miracle. We had sailed on the
Miracle and liked its layout, so we knew we would be comfortable
while on board the Legend.
Arrival in England
We flew into London Heathrow landing on a late rainy
evening two days before our cruise out of Dover. We wanted to
spend a day in London before our cruise and hopefully recover
from the jet lag of our flight by spending two nights there. I
do not sleep well on flights, so we chose an early morning
flight out of Newark that landed at Heathrow around 9:30 pm. A
bonus with this flight is that going through Heathrow
immigration is much faster when arriving at night versus first
thing in the morning when most flights are arriving from the
States. The local currency is the British Pound where one £
equals about $1.55.
Our original plan after getting luggage was to take the Heathrow
Connect train (£9.50/$14 each) to its last stop at Paddington
Station which was near our hotel. But due to construction on the
line, the service was limited late at night. We decided to
arrange for a taxi to take us to the hotel (£29/$47).
The Stylotel was only a few blocks away from Paddington Station
in Sussex Gardens. We booked a 2 night stay there for £230/$348.
It was a room with 2 twin beds and included a full English
breakfast. We booked the hotel for its location. The room was
cramped for space and had an ensuite bathroom (with shower) that
was smaller than what we would have on the Carnival Legend. But,
it served its purpose as a place to sleep and being close to the
Tube stations in London.
Our day in London started as a slightly rainy day that then
turned to just overcast in the afternoon with temps in the high
60's F. After our breakfast, we walked back to Paddington
station. We bought one day travel passes (£9/$14 each) for our
London transportation needs for the day exploring the city. I
have been to London a few times, but this was only the second
trip for my wife. We wanted to visit a few places that we had
not seen on our previous trip together.
Using the Tube (subway), we first headed south to the
Westminster Station and walked to the Queen's Horse Guard Parade
building and grounds to view the changing of the Queen's Horse
Guards. (We had seen the changing of the guard at Buckingham
Palace on a previous trip). We watched as 12 horsemen arrived
from Buckingham Palace to the Horse Guard Quarters. After the
ceremony, we walked down Whitehall Street past Downing Street
(home of the Prime Minister with very heavy security) and then
went to visit nearby Westminster Abbey (£16/$24 each) which has
so much history associated with it. We had walked by it on a
prior trip, but now we had the time to go inside that amazing
building which includes the tombs of several English kings,
queens, and other notable persons. We were not allowed to take
photos inside the actual church, only outside and in the
After leaving the church, we walked across the Westminster
Bridge to admire the view of the Parliament Building and the
tower with Big Ben. From there, we took the Tube north to the
St. Johns Wood Station which is the closest stop to Abbey Road.
We walked across the road and then sat on a wall as we watched
group after group of Beatle fans stop traffic in order to have
their pictures taken as they walked across the iconic zebra
Our last stop for the day was to take the Tube east to visit the
British Museum where I showed my wife the Rosetta Stone and the
Elgin Marbles (pieces of sculptures from the Greek Parthenon).
Just a note regarding National Museums in Great Britain; most
have no admission fees. There is a box at the entrances asking
for donations, but you are free to just walk inside.
We ended our afternoon by heading back west to Paddington
Station to have an early dinner in a local pub. We did stop by a
market we found in the station to pick up some 6-packs of Diet
Coke to bring with us to the ship.
Day 1 – Embarkation Day Dover, England
In the morning, we woke up and went downstairs for our
breakfast in the hotel. It was a rainy day with temps in the low
60’s F as we checked out of the hotel. I had arranged for a
driver through Dovertransfer.com to pick us up in a sedan at the
hotel and bring us to the Dover cruise ship terminal for
£130/$196. We thought of taking a train from St. Pancras station
to Dover, but after looking at the costs of buying tickets for
the tube and train as well as a local taxi in Dover, the cost
would have been near £110. We figured not having to schlep our
luggage on the tube and train was worth the extra £20.
It was a 2 and 1/2 hour ride from the hotel to Dover. It took
almost an hour to cross London before getting to the highway
towards Dover. The cruise terminals are on the western docks
opposite from the ferry terminals which are located on the other
side of the harbor. We could see parts of the famous white
cliffs and Dover Castle behind the ferry terminals. We arrived
at the terminals at 12:45 pm; the Legend was the only ship in
port that day.
When we walked into our terminal, there was a very short line
for security before lining up for the sign-in process. I had
previously registered on line and provided all of our
information, so we only needed to wait to get our keycards.
Next, we went to the door leading to the pier. It was here that
they took our photos to match with our keycards. We walked onto
the ship in less than 15 minutes after entering the terminal.
This was easily the fastest processing prior to boarding a ship
we have experienced.
As we came on board, we thought it was odd that they did not
have the day’s Fun Times. We went to our cabin to find that it
was already cleared for us to use, so we dropped off our
carry-on luggage and headed up to grab a bite and then explore
the ship. Our room for the cruise was an inside cabin (room
5255) which was near the aft stairwell on the upper deck.
As we were in the Unicorn Café buffet on the Lido deck, we heard
a lot of passengers mumbling about a changed itinerary and then
heard an announcement from the Cruise director that there would
be a quick discussion in the Follies Lounge Theater at 3:00 pm
to go over the details. Around this time, they had started to
handout Fun Times newsletters with the updated information
including the meeting in the Follies Lounge at 3:00 pm.
Since we had planned for this trip quite a while ago, we were
nervous about the potentially bad news. On our last Carnival
cruise, our ship was diverted to 2 different ports of call due
to a hurricane in the Caribbean. The Follies Lounge was packed
with passengers eager to hear the news. The CD, John Heald, came
out and explained that due to a large fierce storm forecasted
for the North Sea, a decision was made to change the itinerary
of our cruise. They had been spending the last day finding
cruise ports to switch with. They were competing with other
cruise lines trying to do the same thing with their ships that
needed to be diverted from Norway as well. He announced that
instead of starting our cruise by heading north to spend a day
crossing the North Sea before visiting Stavanger in Norway, we
would now be heading south to go around England to visit
Liverpool, England on the west coast. We would visit all of the
same ports as originally planned except for the cancellation of
Belfast in North Ireland, which Liverpool replaced. The order of
the ports visited and dates would be changed though. We had not
many any real plans for Belfast, so we did not miss seeing that
port, but it would have been nice to visit as we have not been
there before. We were actually really happy to hear the news
about our visit to Liverpool as we are big Beatle and British
Invasion music fans. Liverpool is the home to so many of those
Our only concern was for two ports in Scotland where I had
arranged for private tours and were worried that the guide would
not be available for the new dates. I had made the arrangements
to have 3 other couples from the ship join us and they were
concerned as well. I went to the internet cafe and bought a time
plan (which I had to planned to do anyway). I then sent off an
e-mail to the guide in Scotland to check for his availability
with the new dates in port. I left a message with the other
couples that I would get back to them as soon as I had heard
from the guide.
We continued exploring the ship a bit more before heading down
to our assigned station for the muster drill at 4:00 pm. We did
not have to bring our lifejackets to the muster which was
located outside by the lifeboats assigned to our cabin area.
After the drill, we headed back topside to find a spot in the
aft Serenity area under cover from the rain for the 5:00 pm sail
For this cruise, we had chosen the “Your Time” dining option. We
went to the Truffles Restaurant for dinner, which is the only
main dining room on the ship. The dress code for this evening
was Cruise Casual. The show for the evening was the “Welcome
Aboard Show” show in the Follies Lounge at 10:15 pm. The Follies
Lounge holds almost 1,200 people. The show was hosted by Mr.
Carnival himself. John Heald is the senior cruise director for
Carnival and has a funny blog site with Carnival. He welcomed us
to the ship and then asked a few guests to come up on stage to
participate in a fun game which had everyone laughing.
Day 2 – Day at Sea
It was a partly cloudy day with temps in the 60’s F, but
very windy. The day was spent sailing around southern England
and Wales. By noon, we had reached Lands End and were heading
north into the Irish Sea. There, we saw quite a few dolphins
chasing after schools of fish.
The ship has two large pools mid-ship on the Lido deck. One pool
had a cover closed over the pool which cut out the wind and made
it comfortable. This was one cruise where finding a chair by the
pool was not a problem. There were a lot of activities during
the day that included trivia contests (which we enjoy) as well
as pool games on the Lido deck, cooking and food demonstrations,
seminars, and even a movie shown on a big screen in the Firebird
I went for a 5-K run on the deck 3 outer promenade in the early
afternoon. Checking for e-mails, I did get a reply from the
guide in Scotland stating that he was available for both ports
on the new dates which made our day. I contacted the other
couples right away.
Since we did not have a chance to research the port of Liverpool
and wanted to be sure that we visited Beatle sites, we went to
the excursion desk and booked an afternoon tour covering the
Beatle sites in the city ($89 per person). We normally make our
own arrangements in port.
For dinner in the Truffles Restaurant, the dress code for this
evening was Cruise Elegant. On the menu was lobster and prime
rib which is always a big hit with everyone. The evening’s
entertainment in the Follies Lounge was a production show called
“Jazz Hot”. We thought it was a good one. The show band had 10
pieces and they sounded terrific. The dancers and singers worked
well together. After the show, we went to see the comedians the
Punchliner Comedy Club in the Firebird Lounge. They had comics
performing on a few nights during the cruise. The comedy club
offered family friendly shows early in the evening and adult
humor in the later hours.
Day 3 – Liverpool, England
It was a dreary day with occasional rain and temps in the
50’s F and very windy. We arrived at the dock by 08:00 am and
were the only ship in port which is where the River Mersey meets
the sea. I was told that this was the first time the Legend ever
visited Liverpool and may be the first Carnival ship to so as
We slept in and had a late breakfast before I headed up to the
Sun deck 10 for another run during a break from the rain. At
1:00 pm, we headed out to get onto the Beatle tour excursion bus
along with a lot of other excited Beatle fans that would be
taking the same tour. After we got onto the bus, we were all
disappointed to hear the tour guide explaining that the tour
around the city was being cut short due to a scheduling conflict
with the Beatles Story Museum which we would visit as our last
stop of the tour. We started off with a brief visit to Mathew
Street, the location of the former and new Cavern Club which was
where the Beatles and so many other Liverpool bands made their
mark as they achieved fame. After that, we drove by the schools
where John, Paul, and George attended when they met and then the
building where John married his first wife. Next, we drove to
Penny Lane where we got off for a short walk and to take photos.
Before we went back to the port to visit the museum, we drove by
the gates to Strawberry Field (an orphanage where John played in
his childhood). The Beatles Story Museum (located a few blocks
away from the ship) was interesting and we wished we had more
time to look over everything that they had on display.
Looking back, we could have gone off the ship on our own, walked
over to the Beatles Museum and then hired a cab to take us to
all of the Beatle sites in town for probably half the price of
what we paid. We just did not realize how close everything was
to the piers. We got back to the ship after the tour around
05:30 pm before the last call to come back on board.
Sail away was at 06:00 pm. As we left the port and headed into
the open water, it was very windy. Passengers in the open on the
forward top decks had to hold onto the railings with both hands.
We passed by wind farms and saw many oil platforms as we sailed
north to our next port of call which was Greenock, Scotland. The
sea was rough that night.
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. The main show
in the Follies Lounge was an entertainer named Brett Cave. He
played piano and sang along with the backing of the Legend Show
Band (10 pieces). He very funny and it was a very good show with
plenty of Billy Joel and Elton John songs being performed.
The comedians were back in the Firebird Lounge. But, we decided
to get some rest before our port day.
Day 4 – Greenock & Glasgow, Scotland
It was a windy day with off and on rain and temps in the
Greenock is the cruise port center for Glasgow. It is located
about 30 miles west from the center of Glasgow. Glasgow itself
is only 71 miles west of the capital, Edinburgh. Glasgow is
reachable by train and bus service from Greenock. Since Scotland
is part of the United Kingdom, the local currency is the British
Pound. This was our first visit to Scotland, a land where my
great-great-great-grandfather had emigrated from in the
We arrived at 07:30 am and they started letting passengers off
the ship by 08:00 am. We were the only ship in port. While they
had a small cruise terminal building, the dock area by our ship
had cargo containers stacked next to each other to create a
barrier to prevent us from walking around the pier area beyond
the ship and the terminal building.
I had made prior arrangements with a tour guide for the day. The
guide, K Thomson of Exquisite Scotland Tours, has a van that can
accommodate 8 passengers. He lives near Invergordon, but agreed
to drive down to Greenock to give us a tour of the area. I had
posted the tour I had arranged with K on cruise critic.com and 3
couples from our ship signed on with us for the day’s tour as
well. We met in a lounge before getting off the ship to meet K
at 08:30 am in a parking lot near the dock. He arrived a few
minutes after we reached the parking lot and after introducing
himself, we climbed into the van and headed out for our day's
tour of the area.
We started by stopping at a place called Luss located on the
shore of Loch Lomond. It was a quaint little village with small
houses and a charming church. After our visit we headed east
towards Stirling to visit the famous castle located there. On
the way, we passed through a town called Alexandria where K
pointed out a large building that was formally a tobacco
factory. Once we reached Stirling, we drove up a back road
located behind the castle from where we walked up to the
entrance. We had purchased Scotland Explorer passes prior to
leaving home for £29 each, so we did not have to get in line for
tickets. As we walked in, we met up with a group of visitors
that had a Castle guide explaining the history of the place. We
stayed with group for a few points of interest before we split
off to tour the rest of the grounds alone with K. The tour of
the castle took a few hours. As we left, others in our group
asked about making a stop for a quick lunch. K drove into
Stirling and stopped near a shop that had sandwiches.
Next, we headed to the Falkirk area. On our way, we stopped in
Dunmore region where we visited a large estate near Airth that
had a building called the Dunmore Pineapple (built in the 1760’s
to raise pineapples in greenhouses for the wealthy). The
building has a huge stone pineapple on top of its center
building. The estate had lovely gardens and trees all around the
building. From there, we drove to Falkirk where we saw the
amazing Falkirk Wheel in action lifting a canal boat up from one
canal to another. Our guide K is very well versed in the flora
and fauna of Scotland as well as its history. We returned to
Greenock via the highway just getting back to the ship before
the last call to be on board. We had passed a Carnival excursion
bus at the last few miles before the port, so we knew we would
be okay to make it back onto the ship (whew!). Our cost for the
day’s tour with K. Thomson was £50/$79 each.
We arrived back at the pier by 05:30 pm and sail away was 06:00
pm. While we were away on our tour, they had a show in the
Follies Lounge with Scottish pipers and dancers for those people
that did not get off the ship. As we sailed away, there were
pipers at the dock to see us off. That evening we were sailing
southward to our next stop; Dublin
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. In the
Follies Lounge, they had Scotty McLean doing jokes along with
some magic tricks. He was funny at times and then not quite so.
Day 5 – Dublin, Ireland
It was a rainy day with temperatures in the mid 50’s F.
The ship arrived in port by 8:30 am due to the tides. Our
planned sail away was 08:30 pm for the same reason. Passengers
were walking onto the pier by 8:45 am. The Legend was the only
cruise ship at the docks located in an industrial area of the
city. Just like Greenock, they had improvised a secure dock area
for the ship with stacks of containers lined up to form a
parking lot for buses, vans, and taxis. There was a trailer with
a sign that said tourist information at the edge of the area.
The local currency is the Euro where one € equals about $1.32.
We have been to Dublin a few times, so we did not have any tours
booked. They had shuttle buses making runs from the pier to
Kildare Street in the center of the city near Trinity College
which was a few miles away from the port. The ride into town was
free, but you had to buy a return ticket for €9 in advance to be
able to use the shuttle to get back to the ship. (In hindsight,
we could have grabbed a cab back to the ship for about €10 for
the both of us)
We got off the ship in the late morning and got onto the
shuttle. Once we reached Kildare Street, we started walking
north past Trinity College and go over the O'Connell Bridge to
get to the Pro-Cathedral for the last mass of the day. After
that, we walked backed towards the Liffey River and walked
across the Ha' Penny Bridge into the Temple Bar area. We stopped
by a few shops for some souvenirs after which we popped into two
pubs (Auld Dubliner and Gogarty's) on Fleet Street to have a few
pints of beer and to listen to local musicians play. We enjoyed
our time in Dublin that afternoon. The shuttles were only
running back to the ship until 05:30 pm that day. We walked back
to Kildare Street and jumped on a shuttle at 4:30 pm. Sail away
was at 08:30 pm.
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. The main
shows for the evening were the MacDonald Brothers. They were two
brothers that were finalists in the European X-Factor show. One
brother sang and played the violin. The other sang and played
several instruments (accordion, guitar, and piano). They were
tremendous and everyone we spoke with afterwards thought they
had the best show of the entertainers we had seen on the cruise.
Day 6 - Sea Day
Oh my gosh, the sun came out! It was a nice day with
mostly sunny skies. The temps were in the mid 50’s and it was
very windy with choppy seas as we sailed north to go around the
northern and then the eastern sides of Scotland on our way to
our next port visit at Invergordon. By noon, we were halfway to
Invergordon and entered the Shetland Channel. Around 3:30 pm, we
passed the Isle of Skye that seemed to have the sun put a
spotlight on it between the clouds.
With it being so windy, I decided to run on a treadmill in the
gym located on deck 10 forward. The treadmills were facing
forward and this would have given me a wonderful vantage point
of the water except that each treadmill had a silly TV monitor
in front of my eyes and could not be moved. It was a shame
missing the view I could have had. When running on a treadmill
you have to be paying attention to the rolling of the ship and
not watching a TV show.
We played a few trivia games including a Motown Music game by
the pool where we answered every question correctly and won the
coveted 24 carat gold covered plastic ship on a stick. So now we
have one from each of the 6 Carnival ships we have sailed on.
For some reason, they seemed to be short of the trophies and
were handing out Carnival medals instead most of the time. But
after winning a bunch of these, we just wanted a ship on a
The main show in the Follies Lounge was an illusion show called
“The Magic & Dance of Justin Illusion”. The show was your basic
illusion act, but with loud rock music and the show dancers to
add to the atmosphere. About 10 minutes into the show, the lead
dancer (contortionist) had gone into the box that has the people
push multiple blades into her while she ducks into a compartment
underneath. When she did not appear after they pulled back the
blades, the illusionist went up the box and open the front door
slightly and then waved to the side of the stage before walking
off the stage. They abruptly ended the show at that point. They
cancelled the second show as well. It turns out that the dancer
had injured her ankle getting into the box. They did announce
the next day that she was okay and that they would put on the
show again at the end of our cruise with a new dancer doing the
contortion tricks. They had comedians in the Firebird that
night. Since we had a port day the next morning, we just watched
one of the comedians before heading back to our cabin.
Day 7 – Invergordon, Scotland
Entering the harbor at 6:45 am, there was a pretty pink
sunrise that turned into a showery morning that cleared in the
afternoon. The temps were in the mid 50’s F with a calm breeze.
Invergordon is located on the
Cromarty Firth and is about 180 miles north of Edinburgh. We
pulled into the pier at Invergordon at 7:30 am and we were able
to walk off the ship shortly afterwards. Once again, we were met
by the tour guide K. Thomson and his van. He came from his
nearby home to meet us. The same couples as the Greenock tour
joined us for that day’s tour of Invergordon and points south
and east. He was waiting for us at the pier in his kilt and soon
we were heading off in his van.
Leaving Invergordon, we first stopped at a small village called
Evanton and drove down a single lane road where we pulled off to
park near a trail. We walked down the trail for a half mile to
reach what is called Black Rock Gorge. There were two bridges we
crossed to view the Gorge 40 meters below us. The River Glass
has been carving the gorge since the ice age. Next, we were
heading south to cross the Cromarty Firth towards Inverness. We
saw seals basking along the shore even though it was raining.
Our next stop was at a place named Munlochy where we visited the
Cloutie Well. The well goes back to ancient Celtic days and it
is believed that drinking the water from the well has
therapeutic abilities. People would leave pieces of their
clothing as part of the tradition.
Heading south, we stopped in Inverness to visit the cathedral
there before we continued to a place called Dochgarroch which
has locks as part of the Caledonian Canal which connects the
west coast to the east coast in Northern Scotland. We watched as
the lock master opened up one side to allow 2 boats to enter and
then be raised up to the next loch. A short drive away was the
northern end of Loch Ness. We stopped along the roadway to look
at Aldourie Castle located on the opposite side of the Loch.
Before stopping for a quick lunch, we drove up a side road that
gave us a nice vista of Loch Ness.
For those that wanted some food, we stopped in the village of
Drumnadrochit (try saying that 3 times fast) located found about
halfway down the 23 mile length of the Loch. We went into a
quaint pub called the “Fiddler’s”. While others ate, I had a
delicious pint of a black stout from a local brewery that was on
tap. After our break, we went to a nearby roadside spot that
overlooked famed Urquhart Castle and the Loch Ness. The castle
was destroyed in the late 1600’s and has been in ruins since
then. Not much to see except the ruined walls, so we not waste
time going down to visit it.
We left Drumnadrochit to make a stop in Balnain. On the way, we
pulled over when we spotted some Highland Cattle taking a rest
in a field. These shaggy haired cattle have large horns and have
adapted to the harsh conditions of the highlands. As we drove
through the tiny hamlet of Balnain we drove up a narrow lane to
a house located on top of hillside. Our guide has an
acquaintance that owned the property and he wanted to show us
the view from there. It was an amazing sight as we got out of
the van. We were overlooking the Glen Urquhart and the River
Enrick below. It was something out of a postcard.
Our final stop of the day was at the beginning of Glen Affric
where we drove down another single lane road where we had to
stop to open a gate (that kept the cattle within the property)
to drive through to a hamlet called Tomich. We got out and
walked about a half mile up a trail and its steep hill to reach
the Plodda Falls. The roaring falls are about 50 meters high and
the sight was quite breathtaking. Leaving the falls we drove
past ruins of where the first golden retrievers were bred.
Checking our watches, we saw that we needed to head back to the
ship before the last call for boarding. We rushed down the
narrow lanes before reaching the highway north of Inverness. We
pulled up to the pier at 5:30 pm, just in time for last call.
But, it would have been nicer not to have cut it so close. K was
very knowledgeable and wanted to show us as much as possible. We
would suggest asking him to go the farthest point and work back
during the day to allow oneself time to get back with plenty of
time. I know using the Carnival excursions have the security of
the ship waiting for you, but our tours with K Thomson could not
have been made with 50 passenger buses. Our cost for the day’s
tour with 8 passengers was £42/$67 each. We walked onto the ship
at 05:40 pm. Sail away was 6:00 pm as they had pipers to send us
off as we pulled away from the pier.
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. In the
Follies Lounge was a juggle named Jonathan Stamp. His show was
okay, but not worth seeing again. The comedians were back in the
Firebird again. And again, since we had a port day coming up, we
left after one quick show.
Day 8 – South Queensferry & Edinburgh,
It was a day that was mostly sunny with a steady breeze and
temps in the 50’s F.
We arrived at the port of South Queensferry around 7:00 am. This
would be the only port on our cruise that required tender
service to go ashore. It is located about 7 miles north of the
capital city of Edinburgh and is on the south shore of the Firth
of Forth. We were anchored near the iconic Forth Bridges. On the
north shore of the Firth in North Queensferry, I could see a
small cruise ship which may have been the Black Watch of the
Fred Olsen cruise line. Off in the distance to the south, I
could see the city of Edinburgh with its famous castle
dominating over the city.
Around 7:30 am, they were lowering the ship's tenders into the
water. They were bringing guests to shore by 08:00 am. The
tender ride would take about 15 minutes once they cast off. But,
with about 70 passengers per tender, the 5 tenders could only
bring over a limited number of guests per hour.
Our plan for the day had been to just go into Edinburgh on our
own. We knew it would be awhile to get off the ship as
passengers with booked excursions and priority status would be
the first to get off. We took our time having breakfast before
preparing to head off the ship. I just could not see paying for
an excursion for each of us in order to get off the ship sooner.
They made announcements that any guests not assigned to an
excursion had to report to the Follies Lounge with their entire
party before being assigned a tender number. We showed up at the
Follies Lounge at 9:45 am to find the theater filled with guests
already waiting for a tender number to be called. We had to wait
45 minutes before our number was called. We finally arrived at
the tender pier of the port around 10:45 am and it was low tide
so the whole pier was exposed above the water. This allowed
multiple tender boats to dock and unload guests.
We had planned to take the train into Edinburgh. Facing the
shore, we walked to the end of the pier which faced the Hawes
Inn. There was a piper playing at the end of the pier to welcome
us to the port. We took a left and headed a short distance to a
walkway on the right that led us to steps up a long and steep
hill that ended up at the Dalmeny train station located near the
end of the Firth of Forth Rail Bridge. At the station, they only
had a vending machine for tickets which required a European
credit card with a computer chip and pin number. We purchased
return (round-trip) off-peak tickets for £4.20/$6.50 each on the
train from a conductor. There was a train to Edinburgh leaving
every 15 minutes or so for the 20 minute ride to Waverly station
in the center of Edinburgh (third stop from Dalmeny). They did
offer a shuttle bus that left every hour (20-30 minute ride) for
about £8 each.
Edinburgh is a place of two cities; the old and the new. Leaving
the train station, we immediately headed left over to the
Edinburgh Castle located at one end of the old city. It took
about 20 minutes to walk up the steep hill in order to reach the
castle situated on a huge rock formation that rose above the
rest of the area. We used the same Scotland Explorer Passes we
used at Stirling Castle for visiting the castle so we were able
to avoid the long lines queued up at the ticket window (about
100 or so people were waiting).
We spent about two hours at the castle exploring the many rooms
and halls. The only real line we had to get into was to wait to
go inside a building to see the Crown Jewels of Scotland and the
Stone of Scone (Scoon). The Memorial Hall for the fallen
Scottish soldiers was very dramatic. At one o'clock, they had a
firing of a cannon at one point of the castle wall. This day,
they had a U.S. Army Sergeant from Ohio having the honors to
shoot the howitzer.
Leaving the castle, we headed down hill and walked along the
area known as the Royal Mile for a little while. Here is where
we visited a few shops for souvenirs and went into St. Giles
Cathedral which was very interesting. Before heading back to the
train station, we paid a quick visit to the Hard Rock Cafe
located on George Street in the new city area. It was my 65th
different HRC site to visit. We walked to the end of George
Street with the Melville Monument towering over the street and
turned right to go back to the train station.
We reached the pier area at 3:45 pm. It was now high tide and
most of the pier was submerged. This only allowed one tender at
a time to dock to pick up guests. We waited about 45 minutes
before being able to get on a tender. A couple we met on the
tender said that they waited 1 1/2 hours to get on board the
same tender. Just as we were getting onto the tender, a local
excursion boat (Maid of the Forth) pulled up onto the other side
of the pier and starting to take on guests to bring them to the
ship. The last tender back to the ship was scheduled to be at
05:15 pm. Sail away was delayed until 6:30 pm to gather up the
tender boats before we headed north to our next port of call,
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. Later in the
Follies Lounge, they had a show singer/violinist named Simone
Welsh. She was entertaining. With a sea day coming up, it would
have been fun to have comedians late at night. But, they did not
have anyone this night.
Day 9 – Sea Day
It was a partly cloudy day with calm seas and
temperatures in the 60’s F.
We slept in late and after going up for breakfast we saw on the
monitors that the ship was only going at a speed around 12 to 14
knots per hour which is much slower than her top speed. But, we
were easily halfway to Norway. As we sailed along, we passed
several oil platforms. By the end of the day, it seemed that we
would have to start doing circles outside of Stavanger before
pulling into the port the next morning. The day was spent
playing trivia and going for a run on the deck 3 promenade.
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Elegant. In the
Follies Lounge, they had another production show called “The Big
Easy” which was very good. It was the best production show we
saw on the cruise. Down in the Firebird Lounge that night, they
had the ship’s solo guitarist (Edd Carr) along with the 10 piece
show band playing rock songs. It was well received as the lounge
was packed and he got a standing ovation at the end.
Day 10 – Stavanger, Norway
We arrived in the port of Stavanger around 08:00 am. It
was raining with steady winds. the temperature was in the low
50's F. We were the only ship in port.
Stavanger is a major oil industry port for the country. The
local currency is the Norwegian Krone where one US$ equals about
5.5 NOK. We were told that they do not accept Euros or other
foreign currencies there. But, we saw signs in the few shops
that were open (it was a Sunday) that they would accept Euros,
Pounds, and Dollars.
Near our pier, they had excursion boats that you could take to
view the nearby Lysefjord and a rock formation found there
called the Pulpit Rock. The trip takes about 3 hours and they
were charging NOK 400/$72 per person (paid in advance online or
on the boat itself) versus $149 for what Carnival was asking for
the same excursion. With the rain and fog for the day, anyone
that tried to buy a ticket at the pier was told not to bother as
there was nothing to see. But, those with the excursion tickets
went and came back complaining about the limited visibility.
While Stavanger itself is the fourth largest city in Norway, the
old city center is one you can easily walk around in a short
period of time. There are a few museums and shops to visit. Most
of the buildings in the old city area found right off the cruise
ship docks are from the 17th and 18th centuries and were very
quaint. I had brought a Norwegian phrase book with us. But, the
few people we saw in the shops spoke English, so language was
not an issue.
We walked off the ship to go to a mass at a local Catholic
church located about 3/4 of a mile from the ship. The mass was
in Norwegian (There was one in English earlier in the morning),
but we were able to figure out what to do. The population in
Stavanger is diverse due to the oil industry. For example, this
church offered services in Polish, Vietnamese, and Filipino.
Leaving the church, we headed back towards the port passing by a
small lake that had a large fountain in its center. The lake was
called Breiavatnet. It was surrounded by a park and was located
next to the Stavanger Cathedral. The large church built by a
British Bishop in 1125. It was destroyed by fire in 1272 and it
was rebuilt in a Gothic style.
We walked back to the port passing a Burger King where the price
of a Whopper was $15. The cost of living is very high in Norway
and their prices reflected that. Since it was the end of the
cruising season in Norway, the few souvenir shops that were open
had limited inventory to sell. We ended our day in the port
walking up and down a few streets in the old city area. By the
end, we were soaked from the knees down even though we had
Once back on board, we changed into dry clothes and shoes and
found a spot for the sail away. Just before sailed away at 6:00
pm, the sun came out! As we left the port, we had wonderful
views of the lush green landscape as we headed south towards
France and our last port of call in Le Havre. It was one of the
prettiest sailaways we could remember. Other than the scenic
beauty of the nearby fjords, Stavanger is not an exciting port
of call. I would have been more interested in Amsterdam or
Hamburg as a European port of call from Dover.
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. In the
Follies Lounge, they had a show with a mentalist named Alex
Crow. It was not very entertaining for us, so we left after
about 15 minutes. Down in the Firebird Lounge that night, they
had the 10 piece show band back the 5 vocalists from the
production shows. Again, the lounge was packed and everyone
seemed to enjoy the show.
Day 11 – Day at Sea
It was an overcast day with calm seas and temperatures in
the low 60’s F.
That afternoon, they had 2 receptions for Past Guests with Gold,
Platinum, and Diamond status in the Follies Lounge. We so many
on board, they needed to have 2 separate ones. They offered free
drinks and small hors d’oeuvres. They had the show band and a
singer performing during the reception. In the middle of the
reception, John Heald came out to thank us for our continued
support and then showed a small film about the history of
Carnival and all of the ships they have had in their fleet. The
captain did not make an appearance and they did not give out any
The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. In the
Follies Lounge, they had a show with a singer named Sinead
Blanchfield who was very good. Down in the Firebird Lounge that
night, they had different comedians. But, with a port day coming
up, we left early.
Day 12 – Le Havre, France
It was beautiful mostly sunny day (hurray!) with little
wind and temperatures in the low 70’s F.
The ship arrived in port by 6:30 am and passengers were walking
onto the pier by 7:15am. There were no other cruise ships in
port. A few passengers debarked to spend their last vacation
days in Paris. Le Havre is one of France’s busiest ports and is
located by the mouth of the Seine River. The cruise terminal is
about 2.5 miles from the center of town and its railway station.
Just like Ireland, the local currency is the Euro where one €
equals about $1.32.
The planned sailaway was 8:00 pm. For passengers wanting to
visit Paris, it would require at least 3 hours of travel time
each way. Even though we had a few extra hours before leaving
port, time to explore Paris would be limited for those deciding
to make the trip there and back.
For this port, we chose to go out on our own. We had made prior
reservations for a rental car with “Rent A Car” which has a
counter at the Welcome Center inside the cruise terminal. We had
arranged for a small Fiat Panda (standard transmission) and a
GPS unit for the day at a cost of €100/$134 plus gas and tolls.
I had picked up an International Drivers Permit through our
local AAA office a few months prior to our trip. I had read
conflicting reports about needing an IDP, but got one anyway
just in case.
Our plan was to drive south to visit the city of Bayeux and then
go over to the Omaha Beach area before driving back along the
coast with a brief stop in Honfleur. We walked off the ship
around 8:45 am and walked into the cruise terminal to find the
rental car counter. There was one couple in front of us and they
were asking a lot of questions. By the time we had our contract
and inspected the car, it was 09:30 am before we were in our car
and heading towards the highway.
Leaving Le Havre, we went over two huge bridges that crossed the
Seine River near Honfleur. We then followed a toll highway
passing Caen and arrived in Bayeux about 90 minutes later after
driving past wonderful scenery of the countryside. We visited
the museum (€9/$12 ea) that has the Bayeux Tapestry on display.
(www.tapestry-bayeux.com) The tapestry is a large embroidered
cloth (230 ft. long) made in the 1070’s that describes the story
of King Harold of England and William the Conqueror with the
events that led up to the Battle of Hastings in 1066. This is
when King Harold was killed and William become the new King of
England. We were given audio guides that described what you were
seeing for the 20 minutes to walk from one end to the other.
After that, we walked over to the nearby Bayeux Cathedral (Cathédrale
Notre-Dame de Bayeux) which was impressive with its architecture
that contains Norman, Romanesque, and Gothic features. The
center of Bayeux had narrow streets and was very quaint.
Leaving Bayeux, we drove 10 miles north to the seaside town of
Colleville-sur-Mer where we visited the American Cemetery
located there. This is the cemetery shown in the movie “Saving
Private Ryan” with almost 10,000 crosses marking the graves of
fallen soldiers. The cemetery overlooks parts of Omaha Beach.
You could see how difficult it must have been for our soldiers
to make it up the hill after landing on the wide open beach
We drove back to the ship arriving around 04:30 pm in Le Havre
where we stopped by a gas station to fill up the tank for our
rental car. Our cost for the day’s drive in addition to the car
rental was €19.40 for tolls and €26 for gas. Driving on the
highway was such a different story that what we experience in
the States. In France, everyone stays in the right lane unless
they are passing someone. After getting the gas, we drove back
to the cruise terminal and parked the car. The rental car
counter was closed until 6:00 pm, so we boarded the ship and
packed our suitcases for next day's debarkation in Dover. Just
before 06:00 pm, we walked off the ship and checked in with the
rental car agent.
Sail away was scheduled for 08:00 pm for the short cruise across
the English Channel to return to Dover, England. But, we were
delayed waiting for an excursion bus to return from Paris. By
8:30pm we were sailing out of the harbor.
We had been given luggage tags and information on disembarking
the ship the next morning. If you wanted to have your luggage
brought down by the ship’s porters, you had to have your luggage
outside your cabin with your luggage tags attached before 10:00
pm. You also had the option for self assist debarkation which
allowed you to carry your entire luggage yourself and leave the
ship prior to others that wanted to use the porter service. The
luggage tags had assigned numbers.
After dinner, we put out our luggage for the porters to take
away. The dress code for this evening was Cruise Casual. In the
Follies Lounge, they had the illusionist show repeated with a
new lead dancer. Since we were not impressed with the beginning
of the show from the first time, we chose to just listen to
music in the lounges instead. Down in the Firebird Lounge that
night, they had the comedians performing.
Disembarkation Day – Dover
It was an overcast foggy morning with temperatures in the
low 60’s F in Dover. This would be the Legend’s last stop in
Dover as it would be sailing back to the United States after our
We were scheduled to arrive in Dover by 5:00 am. Our
instructions had told us that we needed to be out of our cabin
and off the ship by 8:30 am. This was to allow the cabin
stewards to have their cabins cleaned and ready for new
passengers later that day.
Our flight home out of Heathrow was not until 04:00 pm this day.
I had made arrangements with Dovertransfer.com for a driver to
pick us up at the cruise terminal in a sedan and drive us to
Heathrow with a short stop in Canterbury (£130/$196). By 4:30
am, the ship was in the Dover harbor and was docked at 5:00 am.
By 5:30 am they were making announcements that passengers using
the self assist debarkation process could get off the ship on
deck 2 midship. Around 7:00 am, we headed up for breakfast
before returning to our cabin to finish packing our carry-ons.
Around 08:30 am, we heard the call for our tag number and we
headed down to deck 2 to walk off the ship.
In the terminal, we easily found our luggage and then walked out
of the terminal to find our driver waiting for us. As we were
walking out, several new passengers for the next sailing were
arriving. This was the Legend’s last port of call in Dover and
the European market. After our cruise, she would be returning to
the States where she will be based out of Tampa for the rest of
the year and most of 2014 before being repositioned to Sydney,
Australia in August of 2014.
From Dover, it was a quick ride to visit the cathedral in
Canterbury which we toured for an hour. The Cathedral is found
in the center of the old walled city area with tight narrow
streets. It cost £9.50 each to go into the church. This was the
church where Saint Thomas Becket was murdered and they have the
spot marked and they also have a candle noting the site of his
shrine that was ordered destroyed by King Henry VIII. They had
the tombs of King Henry IV and Edward, the Black Prince in one
area. After that, it was a 1 and 1/2 hour drive to Heathrow to
end our vacation.
The ship –
The ship was built in 2002 as part of the Spirit class
for Carnival and had renovations in 2011. The godmother of the
Legend is Dame Judi Dench. Her sister ships are the Spirit,
Pride, and Miracle.
The capacity of the ship is close to 2,100 passengers along with
960 crew members. The theme of the ship is based on the great
legends of the world. All over the ship, we found examples of
places and people from legends such King Arthur, Jason and the
Argonauts, Robin Hood, etc. The ship is scheduled for an upgrade
in the near future.
Fitness and Spa –
On the lido forward is a large fitness center which
equipment on two floors. It gave wonderful views of the front of
the ship. To find it, you had to walk through the Fountain of
Youth Spa area. There are a wide variety of treadmills,
ellipticals, stationary bikes, and other pieces of equipment
available at all times at no extra charge. All of the equipment
faced out to windows. They offered spinning and pilates classes
for a fee of $12 a session. There was an indoor hot tub found
here as well that was available to everyone. The Fountain of
Youth Spa has several treatment rooms. They offered spa
treatment specials during port days.
I enjoy running and the running track was found on the Sports
deck. A sign posted stated that it takes 15.2 laps to complete a
mile. On the same Sports deck was a small basketball court
surrounded by a net and the mini-golf course.
My favorite place on the ship was the outside promenade on the
Atlantic deck. It wrapped around the ship from the Enchanted
Forest on the port side to the aft and back to the starboard
side of the Enchanted Forest which was about 2/3 of the ship. I
have always enjoyed watching the waves go by on sea days. Like
other carnival ships, there were no deck chairs to be found,
which is disappointing. We enjoyed walking along this part of
the ship where the only sound you heard was the waves going by
the ship. For my 5k runs, I only had to make 6 laps (port to
starboard and back to port) on this deck compared to 48 laps on
the sports deck where I had to dodge people playing mini golf or
just walking around.
Pools and Serenity areas–
The Legend has 3 main pools. The Avalon Pool and Camelot
Pool are found mid-ship on the Lido deck while the Serenity Pool
is found aft. The Avalon Pool has a retractable roof cover and
this is where all the poolside activities occur. All of the
pools are 4 ft 6” deep. There are hot tubs next to each pool.
There are no covers over any of the hot tubs to provide shade on
sunny days. On the Sports deck was a small kid’s pool that was
not near anything and the entrance to a water slide that did not
end up in a pool. An Adult-only Serenity area is found aft on
the Lido Deck with a swimming pool and a hot tub along with
lounge chairs, hammocks, clam shells, and a drinks bar.
They had plenty of musicians on board to entertain people
at various locations and times. They had rock and pop hits
played by a solo acoustic guitarist named Edd Carr who was good.
There was a male guitarist/singer and female singer act called
the Dimas Duo that played international pop hits along with
pre-recorded music. In the Billie's Piano bar, they had Bruce
playing sing-a-long songs. The dance band was a quarter named
the Highlights. The best band on the ship was the Legend show
band with its 10 musicians. They were terrific and as tight as
any show band we have ever seen on our cruises. They played once
in the Atlantis Lounge with a singer which was a terrible forum
for a band to play in. The walkway to the dining room goes right
through it which limited the seating and dancing area. They had
the Highlights play here quite often also. IT seems that people
complained about noise when bands played in Satchmo's, so they
were relegated to this spot near the dining room. They had DJ's
playing on the Lido deck by the pool and in the Medusa's Lair
disco. We miss the days when a live band would play by the pool.
Our cabin –
We prefer inside cabins. With the Legend, the inside
cabins, ocean view cabins, and most of the balcony cabins are
all 185 square feet inside. Our cabin had more than enough room
for the two of us. There were three closets. Two came with bars
with 10 hangars each while the other closet had shelves. We
stored our luggage under the beds. There is a safe and a small
fridge in the cabin. The safe could be locked with a credit card
or a driver’s license that had a magnetic stripe. You could not
use your room keycard.
The bathroom had a shower with a cloth curtain with dispensers
for body wash and shampoo. It has a European style shower head
that allowed you to adjust the height or hold it in your hand.
The hair dryer was located in a drawer by the mirror inside the
room. The TV was an old tube one and will be replaced in the
The location of our cabin (5255) was only a few steps from the
aft stairway on the Main deck. It was 4 decks below the Lido
deck and 2-3 decks above the decks below with dining and
lounges. We tried to use the stairs as much as we could. My
morning routine was to walk up to Unicorn Cafe buffet with
insulated mugs to get our morning tea while getting ready to
face the day.
Public areas for entertainment –
The main show room was the Follies Lounge located forward
on the ship. It holds close to 1,200 passengers and has
entrances on 3 decks (Promenade, Atlantic, and Main). There are
some poles to contend with. We always tried to arrive 30 minutes
before a show to get a decent seat on the side of one of the
main aisles. By show time, most people coming in were scrambling
for a seat.
The Firebird Lounge found forward on the Riviera deck was the
location for the comedy shows as well as a few other activities
during the cruise. The stairs to the lounge were on the
Promenade deck next to the entrances to the Follies Lounge.
Satchmo’s is located on the
Promenade next to the Dream Team Sports Bar. They had the dance
band play there during the first few days of the cruise.
Billie’s Piano Bar is found on the Atlantic deck forward by the
Hollywood Boulevard promenade.
There is a disco called Medusa’s Lair that has a light-up dance
floor. The entrance was found next to the Atlantis Lounge. As
you walked in, there is a bar area that overlooks the dance
floor below. You had to walk down a circular set of stairs to go
to the dance floor and additional booths, chairs, and tables.
Other general info –
A nice quiet area of the ship with seats and views of the
water is found on the Atlantic deck forward. It is called the
Enchanted Forest Interior Promenade.
We found navigating around the ship was easy because of having
just the one large main dining room that is situated aft. For
the most part you could walk the length of the ship on each
The hallways with odd number cabins were on the starboard side
while the even numbered cabins were on the port side of the
The ship has a large atrium area. On deck 2, there is a lobby
where they have a bar with a small stage behind it for
musicians. But, there were limited seats and tables there. On
deck 3, they had a wraparound area that overlooks the lobby
below. This is where they had the photography department
Laundrettes – There are 5 small
laundry rooms located around the ship. They each have 2 washers,
4 dryers ($3.00 per load using a key card) along with an ironing
board and iron. They also had dispensers for soap packets ($1.00
each with a key card).
As with most cruise ships nowadays, there were several dining
options on the Legend. Lunchtime provided the most options.
For breakfast, you could go to the Truffles Dining Room for a
sit down meal or to the Unicorn Cafe buffet on the lido deck.
The Lido buffet offered multiple stations where you could get
omelets made to order along with other hot foods such as grits,
oatmeal, sausage, potatoes, beans, bacon, and toast. They had
plenty of different pastries and cold cereals as well.
For lunch, you could go to the Truffles Dining Room for a sit
down meal or to the Unicorn Cafe buffet on the lido deck.
Inside the Unicorn Cafe, they had several stations which
included an Oriental station, a Deli sandwich bar, a salad bar,
a carvery station that offered different carved meats each day
long with a fish and chicken option, an Italian station, and a
24 hour pizza bar. They also had a coffee bar where you could
buy Starbucks style of coffees. They also had grills on the Lido
deck by the Avalon pool that offered hamburgers, hot dogs, and
For dinner, the Legend has only one large main dining room with
assigned early and late seatings, the Truffles Restaurant. It is
found aft on the ship and takes up two floors. Those with
assigned dining times, used the first floor on deck 2. For those
that had signed up for “Your Time Dining”, you could show up at
the restaurant on the second floor on deck 3 anytime from 5:45
pm to 9:30 pm and when they had an available table, you would be
seated for dinner.
In addition to the Truffles for dinner, they have the Unicorn
Cafe buffet style restaurant on the Lido deck and the Golden
Fleece Steakhouse found on the Sun Deck.
The Golden Fleece Steakhouse had an added fee of $35 per person
and required a reservation. Its dress code was cruise elegant
every night. We did not dine at the Golden Fleece, but we did
speak with fellow passengers who enjoyed their meals there.
For dinner, the choices of foods in the Unicorn were very
limited compared to what was available at lunch. They only had
one station open along with the deli sandwich station and pizza
bar. You had a choice of a carved meat, a fish and then either a
chicken or pork selection with limited salads. There was no
Oriental or Italian food option, or even a chance to get a
hamburger and fries.
They offered 24 hour room service with a limited menu.
There is a taste bar (no fee) just outside of the Dream Team
Sports Bar and the Legends’ coffee and pastry bar from 05:30 pm
to 08:30 pm. Here they offered small samples of different types
of food. The Legends’ Cafe on deck 2 forward offered coffees and
pastries for a fee.
For those that wanted a more full cuisine experience, they also
offered “The Chef’s Table”. For a fee of $75 per person, you
would have a personal meal with the executive chef who would
provide a private galley tour and a multi-course meal for a
small group. You needed to make a reservation for this event.
During breakfast in the lido buffet area, they had fountains
with OJ, Passa-Guava Juice, Apple Juice, and unsweetened ice tea
along with water. For the rest of the day, these fountains
offered lemonade, iced tea, and water.
Bar Service –
There were plenty of places on board to buy alcoholic
On the promenade deck, you had Satchmo’s Jazz Club, Dream Team
Sports Bar, Club Merlin Casino, Legend Lobby under the atrium,
Atlantis Lounge, and Medusa’s Lair Disco.
On the Atlantic deck, you would find Billie’s Piano Bar and the
On the Lido deck, you could go to the Avalon bar between the
main pools and the Serenity area bar.
In addition, you could have bar service in the Golden Fleece
Steak House and Truffles Restaurant when they were serving food
and in the Follies Lounge during shows.
At the beginning of the cruise they offered the “Cheers Beverage
Program”. For $43 a day each person could order as many
alcoholic drinks as they wanted. The price did not include tips
and all adults in a cabin had to buy into the program. I guess
this may make sense if one drinks the expensive drinks like
martinis or Scotch. But, we would never come close to drinking
enough beers per day to justify that cost.
We are beer drinkers and Carnival offered beer bucket specials
where you would get 4 beers (mix and match) with a $2 discount
for the bucket. But, you could only buy buckets at the lido deck
bar, the Firebird Lounge, or the Sports Bar. A few days into the
cruise, they started offering $5 off on beer buckets of either
Miller Lite (ugh) or Coors Light. Towards the end of the cruise,
they started offering 2 for 1 specials for pints of the Carnival
Thirsty Frog Red Ale at any bar that had it on tap. My wife did
not care for it. I thought it was a decent ale, but tasted much
better when it was cold. So, I always had one sitting on ice in
the bucket we bought.
They did have daily drink specials as well, but I never paid
attention to the types and prices.
Past Guest Program –
We are rated as Gold Members of Carnival’s Past Guest
Program (VIFP) and we were invited to the Past Guest party that
was offered to Gold, Platinum, and Diamond members. We were each
given a free drink certificate ($9 value) which could only be
redeemed in the Truffles Dining Room during breakfast, lunch or
There were plenty of other things to do on aboard for all
interests. They had the usual bingo games, art auctions,
poolside games, and informational seminars. We took advantage of
the several trivia games (which we enjoy) they offered during
The casino is open during times at sea. We do not gamble, so we
cannot comment on the slots and gaming tables.
John Heald (England), the cruise director was always at
the stage shows and a few other gatherings. With his duties as
senior cruise director for Carnival and his blog, he has his
team take care of the day to day activities on board. The
assistant CD, Calvyn (Canada) has the dourest appearance of any
CD staff member we had ever seen on our cruises. But, he had a
clever wit and was funny to listen to. He and John had a daily
morning show on one of the TV channels that was amusing at
times. The rest of the cruise staff were very friendly,
especially Keely (England), Matey (England), Katie (England),
Taylor (USA), and Stevie G (Canada).
We did not see the captain on this cruise. He may have been in
the lobby during the first elegant night sea day for photos with
Our room stewards, Dasna and Wayan were assigned 28 cabins to
service during our cruise. They took care of any requests we
made which included getting an ice bucket and having it filled
twice a day.
We enjoyed our cruise on the Legend. It was a treat to
visit some many ports even if it was so rainy. But, we do not
feel the need to return to Carnival unless there was an
itinerary that appealed to us.
We do not understand why they do not have more cruises going
around the British Isles and Ireland. We would definitely return
if they did.
Photos we took on our cruise are here
Photos we took of the Carnival Legend and her public areas can
Guide & Cruise
Cruise Diva's Blog
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