Carnival Dream Family
The happiness of Carnival's youngest passengers is not an afterthought. The ship has 19,000 square feet of space and a lengthy list of activities devoted to those 17 and younger.
Camp Carnival, which takes up the entire midship area of Deck 11, is divided into two parts, with those ages 2 to 5 on one side (babies are not accepted), and two other groups -- ages 6 to 8 and 9 to 11 -- on the other. Activities for the youngest set include art projects, songs and face-painting. The older kids get more sophisticated organized activities, such as rehearsals with the Fun Force acrobatic troop, plus access to Wii and PlayStation 2. Hours are long, with the camp opening between 6:45 a.m. and 10 a.m., depending on the day. When the organized activities end, usually at around 10 p.m., on-site babysitting for ages 2 to 11 ($6 an hour for the first child, $4 an hour for each additional child) is available until 3 a.m.
Two inviting and well-designed teen clubs for ages 12 to 14 and ages 15 to 17 are located side by side on Deck 4; both are generally open from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. on days in port and from noon during sea days. Circle C, for the tweens, has a dance floor, video jukebox and Internet stations, and activities include dance parties, game shows and Wii competitions. Club O2 for the older set also has a full array of gaming consoles, a dance floor, music-listening stations and soda bar, plus activities such as karaoke, dance classes and midnight mini-golf forays. Both have dedicated directors.
For both big and little kids, the Warehouse, next to Club O2, features more than a dozen arcade games and air hockey.