The title may be a little misleading. I was in New Orleans and I'm sure somewhere in the city there was a Carnival taking place. I mean, this city needs no reason to throw a good party. Just stroll down Bourbon Street if you don't believe me. Even in middle of winter you will find people partying too much and street performers out by the droves catering to the tourists and their preconceived notions of what New Orleans is all about.
The Carnival I speak of in this instance is Carnival Cruise Line. I was in NOLA for the first time ever (that's an entirely different story) so I could inspect the Carnival Dream and the Carnival Elation. Another first, I had never stepped foot on a Carnival ship, although I do have a cruise booked on the Triumph in January.
I must say, I was pretty impressed. I wasn't prepared for the level of detail and luxury that Carnival puts into their ships. I mean, they are known as the 'fun ships' not the 'luxury ships'.
That is some massive detail in those lounges. And the themes are perfect for these ships to port in NOLA!
The cabins on the other hand were a bit bland, but hey how much time does one stay in their cabin anyway? Although the suites on both of these ships were smaller than what I've seen in the past with Royal Caribbean, they were very well appointed. I was also impressed with the size of the bathroom and dressing area in proportion to the Grand Suite itself. It rivals luxury ships any day.
The Elation just came out of dry dock in October and despite all the upgrades, the bathrooms in the regular cabins we were allowed to see, were still a little dated and worn looking. Hopefully this will be addressed in the next dry dock and it doesn't represent the majority of the bathrooms on the ship.
As for New Orleans, I didn't have too much time to sightsee. We had a vacation rental in the French Quarter just two blocks off of Bourbon Street. It was the perfect location. Close enough to walk to everything downtown (including the cruise port if I had wanted to) but yet far enough away from the action so when you ready to sleep it wasn't an issue. Vacation Rentals isn't one of my specialties for nothing. ;)
Of course we walked all around the French Quarter and ate AMAZING Cajun classics. We also took the St. Charles Street Trolley through the Garden District. If you are short on time, I highly suggest taking in the sights on one of the trolleys. Not only will you rest your feet for a bit or avoid dealing with traffic, but you'll meet some colorful people along the way.
I look forward to returning soon to NOLA and spending some quality time checking out the city and the surrounding area. In the mean time what is your favorite neighborhood in NOLA?
Our travel adventures and missteps. Sometimes on our own, sometimes with our kids, but always having fun!