Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Cruise Buffet

There are so many options on a cruise ship, that you do not want to spend your time only eating at the buffet.  We never ate the buffet for breakfast, ate there almost every day for lunch and snacks, and then only ate there once or twice for dinner.

When you first board the cruise ship, the only place open is the lido deck buffet.  I had heard that Carnival introduced a pasta bar onto this ship, so we wanted to try it out before everyone else knew it existed.  Sadly, it wasn't as good as I thought it was going to be.

Jason tried out the chicken alfredo pasta and he loved it.  I had penne pasta with clam sauce and it just wasn't as good as I hoped for.  The pasta was not cooked all the way through and there were barely any clams at all.

Sadly, I don't have pictures of most of the food we ate on the Lido Deck.  I really slacked off on that part.

Our original seating assignment for the Main Dining Room had us sitting with 8 other people, so we decided to skip out of dinner the first night until they could get us a table for two.  We went up to the Lido Deck and I was very disappointed with the choices.  They had a lot of the same food as the dining room, but they had been sitting on a buffet line for so long that it didn't taste near as good.  I wish they would have had a few more options since it is supposed to be an alternative to dining in the dining room.

I'm a huge lover of the pizza on Carnival ships, so most days I ate margherita pizza and french fries.  Absolutely delicious and the perfect thing to fill you up after being the Caribbean sun.

There was a Mongolian Grill on board that my husband had to check out.  You stand in line and put all the mix-ins that you want into your bowl.  When  you get up to the cook, you had him your bowl and he cooks everything on a flat top grill right in front of you.  J said it was delicious and would definitely try it again.

Sorry for the lack of pictures in this part of the series.  I promise tomorrow I'll make it up for you because I took a picture of every single dish we ate in the Main Dining Room.


  1. We cruised with Carnival a couple years ago and loved it, but I have to admit that I like the dining format on Norwegian, which we just cruised with for our honeymoon, much better. They have two main dining rooms, but you don’t have an assigned table or meal time. They also have a about five specialty restaurants, some of which charge an additional fee, but which are really good. The food in the buffet section was also great.

  2. Carnival now has anytime dining. When you book your cruise, they will ask you your dining preference and you tell them that you want anytime. One dining room is assigned to the anytime dining passengers. You can go anytime between 6pm and 9pm (I think those are the times) and get a table. There's a wait at times, but they give you a beeper. From what I've heard, when there is wait, it's not longer than 10-15 minutes.

    I prefer the traditional dining because I like to have a particular time to eat. I also enjoy having the same waiter every night.

  3. Royal Caribbean also has the anytime dining, but supposedly it's helpful if you make reservations to not have a wait. But I'm with you in liking to go to the traditional dining... we always had our drinks from the bar sitting on our table by the time we arrived and there is just more personalized service (I think).