Carnival Countdown

With just 24 days until our Carnival cruise onboard the Vista it is time to start making those final arrangements.

I have travel insurance with my bank account but after investigation it doesn’t cover us for a cruise as you need specialist cruise insurance cover. I picked up a good level of insurance for a family of 6 for under £30.

The great thing about Carnival cruise line is that you can check-in, book childcare clubs, restaurants, spa treatments and arrange excursions all before you board.

As it is Kian’s 16th birthday whilst we cruise we have organised it for the cabin to be decorated and a birthday cake with our evening meal.

There are dozens of excursions to choose from and you could not fit them all in, even if you tried and it is a tough choice. We have decided on three:

Mount Etna: We have decided against the full visit as the kids are too young, however we will travel through vineyards and valleys of stratified lava, until reaching an altitude of 6500 ft. Along the way we will be able to observe the vegetation that grows in striking progression, alternating the Mediterranean maquis of the low altitudes with a whole series of mountain forms that become increasingly bare as you travel upwards. From the top of the Silvestri Craters we will be able to admire the volcano in its entire spectacular, and at the same time terrifying, charm.

Mount Etna

The Ruins of Pompeii: For this excursion we will have a guided tour of the amazing city of Pompeii, possibly the most famous excavation in the world. Twenty thousand people lived in this provincial town, of which 2,000 perished in the horrifying eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D. Twenty feet of ashes and pumice stone covered Pompeii, and much of this has been removed during the last 200 years to reveal all the details of everyday life. The mosaic floors and the brilliant frescoes shine forth in all their undiminished glory. 

The theatres and the luxurious villas, even plaster casts of the locals at the moment of asphyxiation, are there for our inspection. And looming over all is Vesuvius.  Afterwards, a stop at a cameo factory will be made to see how this delicate work is created. 


Leaning Tower of Pisa: A guided visit to Miracle Square, the home of the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. Walk 15-minutes to the Square; enter the Pisan Romanesque-style Cathedral and view the marvellous facade adorned with colonnades, arcades and imposing bronze doors. 

Visit the inside of the breathtaking circular Baptistery. The highlight of the tour will be the close-up exterior views of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. 


There is lots more we would have liked to have done, but there is so much to do onboard the Carnival Vista that spending time on the ship and enjoying everything it has to offer is a must too with the ropes course and sky ride top of our list of must do’s, well we are their thrill seeking ambassadors after all.

So now it is time to think about what activities onboard to book, what to pack and which cocktail I want to try first.

If you want to find out more about what the Carnival Vista has to offer families who want to cruise, check out these reviews of the ship from Tinbox Traveller.

Have you been on a cruise before?

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23 thoughts on “Carnival Countdown”

  1. Oh, you will love Etna so much! It’s a very special place, on top if feels like you are on the moon and the atmosphere gets even better when clouds are passing by. Remember that up there it’s very cold, and bring some jackets 🙂

  2. I’ve never been a cruise before but I’d love to one day. I hope you enjoy your cruise and visiting all those fab historic sites.

  3. Been cruising once and absolutely loved it! It’s great that they sort everything out and make those special times even extra special by adding cute birthday decor etc :). Great pics!


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