We are a family of three, mum, dad and teenage son. This is our first family cruise.
We left from London Heathrow on a wet and windy morning, no delays the flight left on time, direct to Barcelona. The Carnival representatives that met us at the airport were not in our opinion very friendly, abrupt and very flustered, not the best first impression of Carnival. We had pre booked transfers with Carnival, so our luggage was taken from us and then delivered directly to our stateroom on the ship. Excellent service, and we would recommend this to other guests. Make sure however that you pack some shorts in your hand luggage to change in to as weather was very hot and luggage took a couple of hours to get to the room.
Once on the bus we had a short transfer to the ship. The process to check in and collect our sail and sign card, and ship deck map was very straightforward, and took no more than 30 minutes from arriving at the port. The staff are extremely well organised with 4500 guests they needed to be!.
Carnival Magic is very well designed, with some very good attention to detail. Our son loved the glass lifts and the atrium area. The shopping floor could have been larger, this area in the evening got very busy and it was difficult to walk round comfortably with our pushing guests as you walked through. The Red Frog Pub on deck 5 was a great addition to the ship, my husband loved the Thirsty Frog Beer. The Comedy club had some very good comedians, and a nice friendly atmosphere.
The Carnival band were excellent, and helped to bring the shows in the Showtime Theatre to life. My husband found John the Cruise Director hilarious, watching the morning shows on the repeat channel on the TV.
The TV's in the cabin allowed you to view your sail and sign accounts, and all those guests that are linked to your booking. A good way of keeping check on what your children are spending on the ship. There were a few TV channels, and a film channel.
The choice of food was good fresh, and nicely presented. We eat mostly in the Lido restaurant on deck 10, We had the your time dining time, but the restaurant was very formal, great for adults but not when you have children who want to eat with no waiting. The plates were too big, a small plate and a tray would have been better. We found ourselves walking backwards and forwards to get cutlery, drinks etc, making the dining room feel busier than it maybe was.
We took three of the Carnival excursions, Easy Rome, Mount Etna, and Marseilles and Cassis. Very well organised, with knowledgeable tour guides. The tours gave you a very small snap shot of the place you were visiting, in comfort and ease. In the other ports we took the coach from the ship to the local town and explored ourselves, for only 5 euros each. Children free in Italy.
Our son thought Circle C was great, we hardly saw him, the activities were good well planned and managed. A great opportunity for him to make new friends.
The staff should be congratulated, they all worked so hard to keep the ship in prime condition. Always cleaning and clearing, polite and efficient.
We loved Carnival Magic, and hope that this review has given you an insight in to their newest ship, thank you Carnival, we had a great time on our holiday.