19 Carnival Magic Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

We booked this cruise because it was visiting some of the sites we have not previously been too, such as Dubrovnik and Mt Etna. We booked a SPA package and Suite. The Suite did not disappoint. More than ample room. Very spacious and ... Read More
We booked this cruise because it was visiting some of the sites we have not previously been too, such as Dubrovnik and Mt Etna. We booked a SPA package and Suite. The Suite did not disappoint. More than ample room. Very spacious and clean with a spa bath of our own and separate area for our clothes. We were more than impressed with the cleaning staff who worked around us and we never came back to a messy room after breakfast. We loved the way they put the towels in the shape of different animals on the bed each night. While we had chosen anytime dining as we are early to bed early to rise people we found that although we asked for a table for two on every occasion we were seated at large tables for breakfast constantly and although we kept asking to be moved the dinning staff were not impressed. I had a cold so did not wish to share my germs with others around me. The Food was superb only one night could I not eat the main meal. The breakfast menu never once changed. The main buffet was quite good but I hate ques. The drinks however were overpriced. Minimum $8 for a house wine. One glass mind you not a drop more. I believe that they should be slightly cheaper when in the dinning room at night. The Spa and Gym were fantastic areas if a bit small. State of the art equipment and the Steam rooms felt like luxury best ever on a cruise. Entertainment was fantastic. Great music, Great comedians and entertainers all round. The Water Slides were exciting, what was missing was the children. This cruise we were on was more for the young couples and elder couples. Kids were missing. The decor of the ship was a little lacking IMO not so garish as other cruise lines I've been on but still a little too boring. The Internet access was very good. The pools a bit small. Tours with the cruise line are way overpriced. We wanted to go on a Sorrento Amalfi Positano tour and it would of cost us approx $180 per person for the day. We walked off the ship and with another couple from the cruise hopped in a limo with our own taxi driver who knew all the sites for $200 all up. We had a wonderful day at our own lesuire and saw all the sites we wanted to. I cannot understand why the tours have to be so expensive on the ships. Overall I would use this cruise liner again but maybe for only 7 -10 nights. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We originally booked this cruise because John Heald was supposed to be the cruise director. Much to our chagrin he left the ship a few weeks early. We were quite disappointed and this set us up to be very disappointed in his replacement. ... Read More
We originally booked this cruise because John Heald was supposed to be the cruise director. Much to our chagrin he left the ship a few weeks early. We were quite disappointed and this set us up to be very disappointed in his replacement. But other than that, this was a great cruise. The ship is by far the nicest of those we have been on previously. We found the decor to be less gaudy and more tasteful and our stateroom was great. While we were disappointed with the CD, we found the rest of the entertainment staff to be great, better than any we had experienced before. In fact, there were several we felt would make a more entertaining CD than the one we had. We were also a bit disappointed with the evening shows. The ones we had were great but they seemed to be fewer in number than we had experienced in the past. Port Reviews My port ratings are really not for the port but rather for the tours we took at the port. We took tours at each port and only saw a bit of the port itself. One thing I saw on this trip was that the European tour companies know their business much better than I have experienced elsewhere. Marseilles (4 out of 5) This tour took us to Avignon and stopped at a winery and a candy shop. The winery gave us a very nice tasting experience, great wine and sizable samples to taste. Avignon was very interesting, especially for a Catholic who has a modicum of knowledge of church history.Savona (4 out of 5) At this port we took a tour to Monaco and Monte Carlo. Although it was a bit of long bus ride it was worth the time to see Monaco. We toured the palace, saw the changing of the guards (not as impressive as I have seen at a Marine base) and went into the cathedral where Princess Grace is entombed. Rome (Civitavecchia) (4.5 out of 5) Our tour took us to the Vatican, St. Peters, and the Sistine Chapel, what more can I say. I do drop the score a bit because Rome is not the most pleasant place to visit due to crowding and traffic. Naples (5 out of 5) We had booked a boat tour of the Amalfi coast to be followed by a tour of Pompei. The boat tour was cancelled due to expected rough seas so we took the bus tour instead. The bus drive along the coast was beautiful and eyeopening. Just experiencing the bus ride on those narrow roads and switchbacks plus narrow streets in the villages was a treat. Dubrovnik (4 out of 5) I probably would have given this a 5 if it had not been for the rain. Again we had booked a boat tour that was cancelled and replaced it with a bus tour into the country side. It was interesting but would have been much better if the weather had cooperated. After the cruise we walked the wall around Dubrovnik. This was a great experience. Venice (5 out of 5 and 4.5 out of 5 two tours) Ah Venice. This is the one port we did see up close and personal. The ship arrived about 1 pm and stayed overnight. The first day we went into Venice on our own in the afternoon and took a gondola ride in the evening. Fantastic evening! The next day we took a boat tour of 3 islands, Murano, Burano, and Torcello. This was quite interesting. The three islands are quite different from one another. Messina (4.5 out of 5) Here we went to Mt. Etna. Our tour took us as high as you can safely go (2900 meters or 9500 feet). We went into craters that had erupted within the past few years and that were still releasing steam. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
Having sailed on Carnival in the past we knew pretty much what to expect. We liked being on a new ship and the itinerary. A few glitches we noted: The cabin temperature was "too cold" so we notified the room steward who ... Read More
Having sailed on Carnival in the past we knew pretty much what to expect. We liked being on a new ship and the itinerary. A few glitches we noted: The cabin temperature was "too cold" so we notified the room steward who called the Director of Housekeeping. She arrived in the cabin and got an ambient temp of 72 degrees. We told her we wanted it adjusted and that our thermostat didn't seem to effect the cabin temp. She informed us that this was controlled by their central a/c/heating mechanism and that it was "the policy" to keep the temp between 72-74. We asked her to raise it. Three days later we again complained to the steward who reminded us of our earlier complaint. We insisted and she reappeared. Same story. We protested and she said she "might contact Maintenance". Shortly someone from maintenance appeared and denied the Housekeepers version of cabin temperature controls stated "she's new" and promptly diagnosed the problem as a "blown fuse on the thermostat" After repair we were able to adjust the cabin temperature from the individual thermostat after being uncomfortablly cold the first week. We booked our Rome excursion ($189) each with Carnival and missed their chartered bus by 5 minutes because there was no on in the lobby to assist passengers with the "sign-in" process. We inquired as to their lack of staff and organization. They eventually refunded our cost and rebooked on a similar one in the afternoon that included only half our tour. At their prices you would expect that they could provide a few underpaid staffers to assist with the thousands who were waiting for shore excursions. We overheard several employees reporting that other guests had missed their tours as well. Guest services staff were visibly flustered. Otherwise staff were very pleasant. Food generally good in MDR. Didn't try specialty restaurants. Lido buffet over-crowded; Indian food when available good; sushi so/so; lounge hogs selfish and unregulated; the cruise line should come up with better system; mixed drinks better if you watch them prepare them; ship very clean; cove balcony a nice addition; spa staff need education on service and communication; wish they would cancel Steiner group; gym adequate; didn't attend any shows; bands and duos mediocre to good. We went for the itinerary primarily. Otherwise would have selected a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We had an aft balcony on Deck 9 just below Lido deck. We had smokers on both sides and because there was not a positive air flow on the back like you would have on the side balcony, we were driven back inside because Carnival allows ... Read More
We had an aft balcony on Deck 9 just below Lido deck. We had smokers on both sides and because there was not a positive air flow on the back like you would have on the side balcony, we were driven back inside because Carnival allows smoking on balconies. Also we constantly heard chairs moved around above, sometimes waking us.My recommendation is DO NOT get aft balcony on the deck 9 or if smoking bothers you. Guest services could not do anything for me since it was allowed. I suggested to have smoke free decks or smoke free ship but they were afraid to alienated the smokers. The cabin service and dining staff were excellent. Curiously, we were seated with french speaking Canadians on the second night. They were not happy and were moved to 2 person table. We met new friends who wanted early seating and the maitre D' moved us to a table for all of us. We had 3800 passengers and there was a lot of hurry up and wait on excursions. Best part was meeting great people from all over the world. Bad part is that the ship is so big you may only see them once in 12 days of cruising. We made great friends.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
This is not our first cruise, and my husband and I have sailed with Carnival, Celebrity and Princess. I was not going to write a review, but I got tired of the negative comments directed at Carnival. I am a former Travel Agent and although ... Read More
This is not our first cruise, and my husband and I have sailed with Carnival, Celebrity and Princess. I was not going to write a review, but I got tired of the negative comments directed at Carnival. I am a former Travel Agent and although I have not been on 50 cruises like some fortunate people, travel was my business and I have a lot of experience in the cruise Industry, that being said this is only my opinion just like everyone else's. I find it very sad that people love to bash carnival when quite honestly one has to think is it just because they are rude people and find negatives in everything. Firstly I don't particularly like Celebrity, but I know many people who do, so I would never say anything negative about them. Okay lets get to the cruise. We sailed on the September 25th, 12 day cruise out of Barcelona. This is an extremely port intensive cruise, and yes the excursions are 10 to 12 hours long depending on what you want to see, with an extreme amount of walking, but to bash Carnival for trying to give people a chance to see as much as possible is ridiculous. Obviously some excursions are not for people with walking difficulties especially in Naples and Rome if you do Rome at its Best and in Naples if you choose Pompeii, Capri and Sorrento. These tours are extremely tiring and very well organized, but people need to keep in mind that for older people with walking difficulties they need to choose something else, which unfortunately many people did not and it made some of these tours difficult, because people got mad when they could not keep up, this is not Carnivals fault, people need to book excursions to their level of fitness.I read many previous reviews on how expensive Carnivals shore excursions are, and yes they are pricey and they are also the same rate every other cruise line is charging. I would highly recommend using Carnivals excursions, because all the hassle is taken away from you and Carnival is highly organized at handling so many passengers. You never have to worry about being left if something unforeseen happens and yes sometimes the itinerary is changed due to strikes or weather, this is not Carnivals fault, and to listen to people complain and want their money back is unbelievable, unfortunate things happen on cruises everywhere and on every cruise line. My husband and I met a lot of wonderful people on this cruise and hopefully will be able to continue those new relationships. That being said YES there was many rude people on this cruise, I don't know why and I will not say which nationalities I thought might be the cause, but to blame peoples ignorant attitude on Carnival is also ridiculous. We had the pleasure of trying out all types of food on this ship, and we were not pleasantly surprised, it was what we expected on Carnival. Other reviews said the food was disgusting and that they felt sorry for people who thought it was good, that there must be something wrong with them. Well I have ate at 5 star restaurants and I have ate at dumpy burger joints, I am not and idiot and I know good food when I eat it. Carnival has great food are some things better then others of course. But the hamburgers don't sit for a week, they are grilled fresh in front of you. The steak house has an amazing atmosphere and great great food, if memory serves me I do believe that Cruise Critic says that Carnivals steak house is one of the best!!! They are right. The Italian restaurant is absolutely delicious and the service amazing. Our dining room service was never slow, the food never cold, and everything was very good, if you didn't like something all you had to do was ask for something else and they will bring it to you. The lido deck buffet has the best selection for food that I have seen and the choices are endless and the food is great there, especially considering how many people they are feeding. The deli sandwiches are fantastic.My husband had the pizza and thought is was quite good as well. We also enjoyed the Red Frog and for a very minimal charge, you get a lot of yummy finger food. The ship is spotless and beautiful and it should be, it is only 6 months old. The employees work endlessly to keep it that way as well. Is the ships decor to every-one's taste maybe not, but why criticize it, obviously some people think it is beautiful, and there is many many beautiful places on this ship, the adults only sanctuary, all the pool areas. The restaurants, the soaring atrium, just to name a few. Our cabin was fantastic, we had the premium vista balcony, with a huge balcony, but there was a lot of room in our cabin as well, plenty of space for our clothes, 3 closets attached together and under the bed we could fit all our luggage, which included 3 large suitcases and 2 carry-on cases. Is the bathroom small, I guess if you compare it to your own at home, but it is very functional, and we had no problems, if the bathroom is to small, book a suite. We had room service every morning and excellent service, the coffee my husband mentioned is not great, it is much better in the dining room and on the lido deck. Embarkation and Debarkation was a breeze from beginning to end, it just took as long to get on and off the ship as how fast you could walk. About 15-20 minutes to get on the ship and more or less to get off. And a very nice feature you don't have to worry about you luggage until you get to the airport, if you booked a transfer with Carnival. I know this is a very long winded review and I just hope it helps anyone who is nervous after reading negative reviews, just take all reviews with a grain of salt including mine and enjoy your trip for the wonderful experience that it will be, if you just let it, enjoy!!!! WE DID!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Sailed on the Carnival Magic on a 12 day Mediterranean cruise in September 2011 Ship was lovely as was expected being new; staff were very friendly and helpful. Our one large complaint was the lack of transportation provided by Carnival ... Read More
Sailed on the Carnival Magic on a 12 day Mediterranean cruise in September 2011 Ship was lovely as was expected being new; staff were very friendly and helpful. Our one large complaint was the lack of transportation provided by Carnival at our ports of call. If you were on a tour off the ship then it was okay but if you wanted to do your own thing and get into town fees ranged from 5.pp to $10.00pp in Dubrovnik. This ended up getting a bit pricey by the end of the cruise. A fee was charged at every port to get off the docks, except Monte Carlo where we were right in town and Venice. You were unable to walk at some of the other ports as you were in an industrial area. We can only surmise that due to the size of the Magic we were moored in container shipyards instead of nearer the town centres. One other smaller complaint was the lack of visibility of the senior officers and captain. They were never seen even at the formal nights which had no sense of purpose, not quite sure why we were dressed up, there seemed to be nothing happening to warrant the occasion. Lots of photographers to take your photo but there was no captains greet and meet or champagne fountain. No midnight buffet with carvings. A behind the scenes tour of the ship which included the bridge and engine room was $95.00. So many places to eat that you were spoilt for choice. At meal times you had plenty of choices. Tandoori, bbq, grill, pizza, deli sandwiches. In the buffet you had a choice of Mongolian wok or carvery, piazza bites for fresh coffee and the most amazing looking cakes and in the evening sushi and nibbles were available. The Italian restaurant charges a surcharge in the evening but you can eat there for free at lunchtimes. Meal was very good. Did not try the steakhouse. It was pleasant to have a drink in The Red Frog bar. Drinks were the usual ridiculous prices but you are a captive audience. Shops were okay with everything in US dollars. Unable to get in to see the shows in the evening as the Showtime lounge was too small for the amount of passengers. Spoke to one person late one evening who asked if we had seen the show. I said no we could not get in, which show did they see the early or late show to which she replied, both shows. Explains why we could not get seat if people are watching both shows. One other complaint was the lack of enforcing of the rules on saving sun beds with towels. This was in the fun days magazine, I complained at 8am in the morning that I could not sit by the pool as 85% of the chairs were empty but had towels on them, I was told it was in the funtimes magazine that saving beds was not allowed. Even though I and other cruisers complained, nothing was done. This happened every sea day. I do not sit in the sun all day long but even the chance to have a couple of hours by the pool was negated by the people who were absent most of the day but had saved themselves a chair. The ship seemed too small for the amount of people sailing on sea days as sun beds seemed to be put out every where around the ship. We were glad we had a balcony to sit on. Our itinerary was changed due to industrial action in Italy, not Carnivals fault in any way but this seriously detracted from the tour for us as we had to visit Marseilles instead of Naples, absolutely no comparison. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Don't get me wrong we had a great itinerary on the Carnival Magic 4-16th Sept 2011 (had it not been for the strike across Italy we would have gone to Naples instead we ended up in Marseille so they could enusre we visited Rome). ... Read More
Don't get me wrong we had a great itinerary on the Carnival Magic 4-16th Sept 2011 (had it not been for the strike across Italy we would have gone to Naples instead we ended up in Marseille so they could enusre we visited Rome). Embarkation and Debarkation were very efficient Staff didnt always seem very happy,they were curteous enough but no polite conversation or equiry about how the food or service was. We were on a table of 8 for late dining in Northern Lights restaurant and our food was most of time just about warm enough to eat. We did bring this to our waiters attention but it was still very hit and miss on the temperature of the meals. The quality of the food was good so Carnival can sort this problem. The waiters appeared to have more tables to manage on this cruise and so were very busy, something which will impact on service. Not got it right on this new ship, they need to improve it when it goes to the Caribbean. Wine packages- they ran out of wine and only 3 out of the 6 white/rose wines were available from Day 2-that is rather odd don't you think? The cabin attendants and dining room waiters were attentive and we enjoyed the singing and dancing in the dining room with the waiters. Well done There were no captain cocktail parties, or anything to make formal/elegant nights at all special so it made these evenings a bit of a non-event except for the opportunity of photographs of course. We both felt that drinks on deck and bars were expensive and really noticed that not many people were buying beers or cocktails because of this. I must commend guest services for rearranging our Leaning Tower of Pisa tickets. Because of re-routing for Italian strike, our tickets needed putting back a day and they got it sorted for us, and printed me off a new booking confirmation. Would I travel with Carnival again, possibly. They just need to up their game a little and it would be fabulous Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Carnival Magic is an amazing ship, still new and all the time spotlessly clean. Staff, with the exception of one, who shall remain nameless, were always polite and helpful. The food choice was incredible and sooo much of it. One small ... Read More
Carnival Magic is an amazing ship, still new and all the time spotlessly clean. Staff, with the exception of one, who shall remain nameless, were always polite and helpful. The food choice was incredible and sooo much of it. One small criticism is that in the Northern Lights, if you sit in certain areas, your dinner will be cold (so will you) as here the air conditioning blasts from overhead. Despite making staff aware of this, nothing could be done, which is a shame, as we hate cold food. The cabins were great. The excursions were ok, although, I wouldn't choose 'in the godfathers footsteps' Sicily again. The coach rocked from side to side and then with the hairpin bends, I felt decidedly queasy by the time we got there and really there is nothing much to see. Monaco, was brilliant, as was Dubrovnik, (don't miss this one). Wasn't impressed with Florence, but if you want to do it, do Florence on your own as its cheaper. Room service breakfast a bit hit and miss as to what they left off the tray, but generally not too bad. The onboard italian restaurant is FABULOUS, with a lovely warm atmosphere, do go! Didn't really have any issue with the sunbeds...yes, people do put their towels on them, but we only once had a problem getting them. It would have been an issue had all 13 of us wanted to be together possibly though. Messina Sicily. Not great and definitely not what I expected. Thought it would be beautiful, but disappointed. Would I recommend this ship, YES. But a word of advice, if you take teenagers 18 or 19 years old, remember they can't drink as USA rules apply, so this was the down side for us and would look for a non US ship if taking my son next year. Special mention to Viyorika, who was very good in the northern lights with exceptional service, well done Viyorika!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
My wife & I had sailed with Carnival once before (on the Pride) & were looking forward to our 12 day Mediterranean cruise. It turned out to be the voyage from hell. Over 3750 guests on board and 90% of them impatient & rude. ... Read More
My wife & I had sailed with Carnival once before (on the Pride) & were looking forward to our 12 day Mediterranean cruise. It turned out to be the voyage from hell. Over 3750 guests on board and 90% of them impatient & rude. Tours off boat were disorganised, over priced chaos and after the 3rd one we gave up trying. The food in the main was very ordinary. The sit down dining servings were small, predominately just warm and boring. The Lido deck "hot" (& I use the word hot loosely!) was disgusting. The only thing you could get hot for breakfast was freshly cooked omelette or fried eggs and for lunch, wok fried Asian meals. Bacon was either fried to a crisp (American style) or raw and cold English bacon. Toast was lukewarm & soggy. If you're American, you'd be satisfied with the burger, hot dog, burrito etc fare. The pool deck was minimally supervised and although it was supposed to be not allowed, people would come down at 5 or 6 in the morning and reserve pool lounges. The ship pool crew never policed this and with over 3700 people on board, trying to swim in 2 bath tub sized pools was just too hard an exercise. The pushing & shoving for meals, tours etc is endless. The cruise also allows disabled and very old people and whilst they have a right to cruise, they cause long delays on tours and everyone has to compensate for a minority few. We booked a12th deck cabin & that gave us 24hr access to the Cloud 9 Spa facilities but it could be bought and for the number of times you use it you could save a fortune & book a lower deck level. Lift waiting time at peak times is unbelievable & you end up doing a lot of stair work. Time in some ports is minimal & given the cost, the crush to get off & on & the time you lose waiting that someone who won't play by the rules, & believe me there's always at least 1 pair or family, you just give up trying. Our room steward, Clemente from India, was outstanding & did his utmost to help us enjoy ourselves. His team of cabin stewards also deserve a good rap. The Casino Manager Troy K. was also a great bloke & did his best to help us Poker players make the best of a terrible location. Texas Holdem by the way is only available by playing computer tables 2 of the them seating 10, & they're beside the smoking allowed poker (slot) machines in the publicly announced Non Smoking Casino! The casino bar & cashier's desk closes at 2am, even when you're having a "Fun Day at Sea".you can continue to play poker & slots, but there's no staff. The "Red Lion" Pub is an oasis of escape, as is the "Piano Bar". There's 2 other restaurants on board where you can pay but neither rate a mention. The ship's shops, open when at sea, are set up to narrow the passageways to the dining room and encourage impulse shopping. It just makes getting to dinner a chore because people will just get consider others. Not lastly, on board Internet costs, like everything else are astronomical & it's a slow server gee, I wonder why that is? If you really want to cruise, consider a smaller guest size line & avoid the "K-Mart" standard money raking line like the plague!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
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 ... Read More
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. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Embarkment was easy and very quick, disembarkment was a bit manic. This was my 1st cruise but my parents 19th, their 1st with carnival, I was impressed with cruising and am now hooked but my parents were very disappointed with carnival and ... Read More
Embarkment was easy and very quick, disembarkment was a bit manic. This was my 1st cruise but my parents 19th, their 1st with carnival, I was impressed with cruising and am now hooked but my parents were very disappointed with carnival and will not be traveling with them again. There is something missing on the Magic, not sure if Carnival wasn't prepared for the majority being Brits, Americans and Canadians and is more set up for Eastern Europeans??? The Magic is a beautiful ship and very clean, decor was bright and colourful, cabin 8437 an inside cabin for 3 was fine. I went with 2 14 yr old girls who had an amazing time, they said that the clubs for kids wasn't set up right with ages, up to 11, then 12-14, then 15 -17,think it should be changed as they said their group was rather young for them as they are nearly 15. Also i like to spend time at night with them dancing and having fun but there wasn't a disco for us both, just over 21 s or their clubs. I hardly saw them all holiday, just a few check ins in the day and evening meal. The entertainment was very poor, i was expecting big shows nightly, we had an illusionist which was good, a female signer and a male signer and that was it! The comedy club was great fun, Percy Cruise was hilarious. John the director was a very funny man. The food was really good even in the marketplace at lunch. We went for anytime dinning but i wouldn't recommend this as we have to wait around 30 Min's every night, the ladies on the door are lovely but some of the waiters are miserable and ignore you, you don't get the same table/waiters at all. After complaining because we received 3 starters and my daughters main meal at the same time and when i asked for the waiter to take my daughters main away whilst we ate the starter he walked off! We never got put back on that table again, they made sure we got the nice staff. Staff around the ship are pretty miserable to start with, taking a good few days to learn to smile and speak to you. The red frog is a fun place to hang out with 2 great guys on guitars, the plaza bar is good to with some good bands playing. The piano bar is a nice way to end your evening. The itinerary was perfect, we went to some fantastic ports. Overall i had an amazing time and met some great people, i will definitely cruise again. One last thing,a little tip, on sea days, the sun bed situation is mad!!! You had to be up by 6am to grab a bed Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Before I start let me tell you something about us so you can see the kind of people we are. I cruised with my girlfriend. I am 38 and she is 43 (had her birthday on the ship). We have been on 2 Carnival Cruises before on the Carnival ... Read More
Before I start let me tell you something about us so you can see the kind of people we are. I cruised with my girlfriend. I am 38 and she is 43 (had her birthday on the ship). We have been on 2 Carnival Cruises before on the Carnival Conquest at Christmas 2009 (Western Caribbean) and Carnival Glory at Christmas 2010 (Eastern Caribbean). We enjoyed both of those cruises so were really looking forward to the Mediterranean Carnival Magic Cruise. We live in a small island called Guernsey in the Channel Islands which is in between the UK and France. The island is a UK Crown dependency although we do not like to think as ourselves from the UK. We are Guerns ! This is a 100% honest review and as much as I love Carnival and its product I am not going to say Carnival is amazing and the staff are the best and the food was perfect etc. There were some good and bad points on this cruise and we will write them here. Please remember these are our opinions which we are entitled too. Here goes! We left Heathrow Airport in the UK on time and flew to Barcelona where we were met with some Carnival representatives. We gave them our details (we had pre booked transfers) and they took our luggage from us and that was the last we saw of it until we got on the ship. This was really nice to not have to worry about luggage and drag it round with us. We highly recommend the pre cruise transfer. It enables you to relax as soon as you give your luggage to the porter. We then had to wait about 30 minutes for other people who had just flown it before getting on the bus to go to the ship. This was quite a long wait, especially as there seems to be a very serious lack of seats in Barcelona airport which of course is NOT Carnivals fault. We also found a lack of seats when leaving Barcelona airport too. Once on the bus we had a 30 ish minutes drive to the ship. Once at the pier the check in process was the best. We did not have any luggage of course as the porters had it so we were able to just walk into the terminal building to check in. Other people were outside trying to sort their luggage out. We went through security in minutes and then went to get our sail and sign cards and again that took minutes. We then just got straight on to the ship with no queuing. I really cannot see how this could be improved when you think about the number of people trying to get on the ship the embarkation was excellent. I think I would have been aggrieved to have VIP embarkation as I can't see they would have got on the ship any faster than us. We went to try to find our cabin and when nearly there we saw some signs saying we could not get into our cabin until at least 13:30. We later found out that it appears that the whole ship is like that and not just our deck. It would have been nice to have known this in advance even though it is not a big issue as we just went to the Lido deck to have lunch. At 13:40 we went to see if we could get into our cabin and sure enough all the signs had gone and we got into our cabin to get changed. On this cruise we decided to go for an interior cabin on deck 1. In the past we have had an interior cabin on deck 7 and a balcony on deck 8. I have to say that I was never really a fan of having an interior cabin on deck 1 but we decided that it cost so much more for a balcony that we could use the saved money to pay for another cruise! (Some negatives on the way! Keep reading as positives on the way too :-)) Now our cabin was number 1357. The cabin itself was fine. Just your normal run of the mill Carnival interior stateroom. The problem as we soon found out was the noise. The walls when you touched them vibrated 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Before booking this cabin I looked on the deck plans and I could see a large area behind our cabin of just white. That raised my suspicions straight away but I was not able to find out what was in this large area. Now I think it was an air conditioning room (not 100% sure). When you walked along the corridor to and from the stateroom you could feel the floor vibrating. Was this a problem ? Not really. In a way it was quite soothing. The noise was not loud just always there. It certainly did not stop you sleeping. My girlfriend said it helped to send her to sleep. The noise meant that you could never tell if the ship was at sea or docked. To be honest I don't think we will be staying on deck 1 again in the future on any cruise. I like my balcony room too much! The other reason we did not get a balcony was because of the itinerary. We got to ports early in the morning and then left quite late so there would not be much time to enjoy the balcony really. While I am on the subject of the cabin we did notice a smell of sewage from time to time. I thought when I had read this in the past it was not real. Unfortunately on certain decks at certain times you can smell sewage. It seems to me that this smell appears when there is a lot of wind outside. Almost like the sewage vent is to close to the air conditioning vent and the smell gets sucked into the air conditioning. I am no expert but that's what it seemed like to us. My girlfriend said you can smell your way to our cabin because of the smell! No it wasn't us! The shower was great and did not flood the floor like past cruises. We also noticed the smell of fuel oil being pumped into the ship. Then we had an announcement to say the ship is being refuelled so everyone is to refrain from smoking everywhere. That smell did not last too long. One day we had the smell of white spirit too but again that did not last long. Where do these smells come from? Our room steward was not as good as on our previous cruises. I don't want to name him as maybe he was having a bad day. The first 3 nights we had chocolates left in our stateroom. After that none! Also one day he took the cushion covers off and left them in the room. Then moved them in the evening. Sometimes the cushions where stuffed into the bed side cabinets and other times not. Also had the same with pillow cases. The old ones were left in the room then later on removed. We also had no ice on several occasions as he forgot to fill up the ice bucket. One night our fun times was just pushed under the door instead of being left in the cabin. Now don't think this bloke is really fussy. We are not. This certainly did not stop us from enjoying our cruise. This is just something we have not experienced before on Carnival. We still gave the steward an extra tip as the room was always clean. This brings me on to the subject of the amount of people on the ship and the staff. OUR PERSONAL feeling is that there are too many people on the ship and not enough staff. Maybe this is why the room steward appears to forget stuff ? Maybe he was too busy ? Staff in the rest of the ship do not seem to happy either. In the past you walk past staff and they smile or say hello. We did not see so much of that on Magic. Again I think the staff are worked too hard. Also I think that so many of the passengers were not able to speak English or were so rude to the staff that probably the staff did not want to be friendly! The staff we met and spoke too were all friendly which I think backs up my theory about them being too busy most of the time. (John Heald has also said this was his worst Mediterranean cruise so maybe this was a one off) The tables on Lido deck did not seem to be cleared quite as quickly as we have seen in the past. I think that again this was down to the sheer number of people on the ship and the staff already working flat out. We were also surprised to find quite a few staff that really had a limited amount of English. The nice thing was that they did try to speak to us in English even if they struggled a bit. This was difficult sometimes when trying to order just a cheese burger with no bun. I have a wheat allergy so I cannot eat wheat. I am not so allergic that if something like a bun touches the burger I can't eat it I can but it is a waste of food. In the past this was not an issue as the burgers sees to be prepared as you need them. On the Carnival Magic the burgers are prepared in advance and put in a tray for you to help yourself. This is a brilliant idea (usually) I tried to ask the cook for just a burger but he did not really understand. I still ended up with a bun I cannot eat. I felt so guilty for wasting this food. The Pizza station was better but for some reason I got a huge gluten free pizza. The cook was upset because I did not take the whole pizza! How can I eat a whole pizza! They make the goats cheese pizza quite small so why don't they make the gluten free ones that size? I can only assume they buy the gluten free pizzas in? An issue we did not like are these new plates on Lido. The plates themselves are great but with no tray to carry stuff there are more people milling around going backwards and forwards. For example at breakfast on Lido we would get our cutlery (which I would put in my pocket) and then get a plate and a bowl. The cereals went unopened in the bowl and some milk. The spoon went in there too. The scrambled eggs etc. went on to the place. Now how do I get a cup of coffee? I have no spare hands. A tray would have been ideal. You have to go and put your food down and then hope that the hard working staff do not clear it away while you have gone to get your coffee! PLEASE bring backs trays! I am nearly finished with the negatives. I have to say that Calvyn the assistant cruise director is so irritating he drove me mad! Make up your own mind but be warned! One thing that we did find that was nice on previous cruises was the fact that staff were really good with remembering our names. This did not happen on Carnival Magic. There is a face recognition system in place for the photographs that are taken on board. For some reason it just did not work. We had 2 photographs available for the whole 9 days. We had photographs taken during the 9 days but they never turned up. Even when you click on the photos not displayed button they still did not appear. It did not bother us as we don't like photos and in the end it just got to be a bit of fun, have a photo taken just to see if the photo recognition worked! It is a really good idea but it does not seem to be quite right yet. The final negative was the lifts. The lifts are always busy. Normally that would not bother us as we use the stairs but due to having a cabin on deck 1 and the lido being on deck 10 it was along walk. It was very rare to just press the call button and the lift would be there. It usually took quite a few minutes of waiting for the lift to arrive. When it did arrive lazy people would get in to go up or down 1 deck! Makes the lift very slow. The lifts themselves were well decorated but due to what I think is a design fault some of them were damaged. I think this is due to people with ruck sacks getting in the lifts and walking backwards into the aluminium lighting. Also tiles were damaged which I think was due to people accidentally kicking them. Its such a shame people can't take more care! OK No more negatives. Only positives ! The Carnival Magic design is brilliant. Just brilliant. It is definitely the best ship in the Carnival Fleet. The extra area on deck 5 and the hot tubs are a really good idea. The Serenity deck is brilliant even if it is too close to the water slides. The hammocks and clam shells are really comfortable and a good way to spend many hours. Instead of having 1 Internet Cafe Carnival Magic has what are called Fun Hubs. These fun hubs are Internet connected computers which you can use (for a fee of course). I like the fact that there are so many all over the ship. The Carnival Magic is very clean as you would expect and the staff work hard to keep it looking like that. One of the best bits of Carnival Magic is on deck 5 and its the Red Frog Pub. Such a good idea. The pub has an amazing atmosphere. Has live music and of course has the Thirsty Frog Beer. Try it! That's all I can say. You won't regret it. The Carnival Magic beds are the same as the rest of the fleet and that is really comfortable. We slept so well. The Gym is very well appointed. In fact I think it has better equipment then our local land based Gym! I unfortunately had to visit the medical centre. I always vowed I would not get sun burnt but I did this time and it hurt so much I had to visit them. They were not exactly friendly but professional. I suppose the amount of idiots like me that get sun burnt must drive them mad. Anyway the doctor sorted me out and I was out of them within a few minutes. With a reasonable bill too. The cabin televisions have interactive capabilities that allow you to book shore excursions on the television. We found that really helpful. The television also has your sail and sign card statement, restaurant menus, audio fun times, messages etc. You can see the bridge web cam and the Lido deck web cam as well as the statistics on where the ship is and the speed etc. You can use it to watch TV too ! :-) The food on the ship is brilliant. I have already mentioned that I have a wheat allergy and I made sure to tell Carnival before we sailed. I had a really helpful lady called Alina who would come and see me each night to choose what I was going to eat the following night. She was really helpful and friendly and made sure I always had something I wanted to eat, not just what they had made. I know I said no more negatives but I must get this one in. The Gluten Free bread on the ship is awful. It is not just Carnival Magic but Glory & Conquest too. I can only assume they buy the bread in from the same place for all the ships. It has a horrible after taste of Bicarbonate of soda (I think). I am not ungrateful. I still ate it and I am very happy that Carnival could provide it. We were in the Southern Lights dining room with the Maitre D Ken Bryne. He was really good. He would sing a song and then the servers would dance. The cruise director was John Heald. We found him very funny. He was also informative when he needed to be and did not bombard us with PA announcements trying to sell stuff! The shows he was involved with were good. The other ships shows were also good. It was hard sometimes to find seats in the theatre and I don't know if that s because the shows were so popular or because people went to the late show instead of the early one or maybe because are there so many people on this ship? Well that's just about it. We loved Carnival Magic and if you get a chance to cruise on her do it. We did not particularly like the Mediterranean itinerary but maybe that is because we live in Europe already. I can imagine the Carnival Magic in the Caribbean is going to be amazing. There will be such a vibe that you don't get on a Mediterranean cruise. Unfortunately we won't be cruising on Carnival Magic while she has a home port of Galveston. We found the Texans to be, well rude. Not all of them but a lot of them. They don't seem to be able to say please or thank you! (Just our opinions) That saddens me as I really do believe you will not be able to beat Carnival Magic in the Caribbean. I hope you found our review helpful. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Our family sailed on the 8/14/11 voyage of Carnival Magic. We had a wonderful time - warm, sunny weather and calm seas. The ship was new and clean. The decor was nice. We enjoyed the same great service as on our previous Carnival cruises. ... Read More
Our family sailed on the 8/14/11 voyage of Carnival Magic. We had a wonderful time - warm, sunny weather and calm seas. The ship was new and clean. The decor was nice. We enjoyed the same great service as on our previous Carnival cruises. Our cabin steward - who had a long Thai name that we shortened to Mr K - was wonderful. He always had our room looking great and was just a nice guy. My mom and son had a connecting cabin and their steward was named Wasan and he was equally as wonderful. The food in the dining room was delicious, the buffet was typically frenzied and the food was okay. One low point was some pushy passengers in the buffet areas and people who refused to wait in line. As always we loved the Tandoor, the room service and getting a continental breakfast delivered in the morning before we got off the ship. The new Ropes Challenge course and game area on the top of the ship is a lot of fun. Our sons were always asking to go up there. We also loved the waterslides and the new water playground. Camp Carnival did it's usual fantastic job. Those girls work so hard. My sons were excited to meet up with a counselor or two they knew from previous cruises! We loved having John Heald as the cruise director. He doesn't blab constantly over the PA so you know when he comes on that it's something worth listening to. He is a really funny guy and his morning show with Calvyn is hysterical. All in all it was another fantastic vacation and we enjoyed Europe and the newest Carnival ship very much. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We are a family of 4 adults - our children were 18 and 21 this summer and to celebrate we chose this cruise. We were not disappointed. There was something for everyone. We flew to Barcelona with Easyjet and were slightly delayed so ... Read More
We are a family of 4 adults - our children were 18 and 21 this summer and to celebrate we chose this cruise. We were not disappointed. There was something for everyone. We flew to Barcelona with Easyjet and were slightly delayed so were some of the last to embark (3.30) We took 30 mins to complete the embarkation procedures and we were enjoying a cool drink as we left port.We had two spa cabins -one for us and our 18 yr old and the other for our 21 yr old and her boyfriend. Both were spacious and comfortable and the balcony was perfect for the sun and watching sunsets. Our room steward was excellent providing outstanding service every day always smiling. We had late dining in the Southern Lights restaurant and the service and food were excellent. The waiters shows were original and fun. We loved the Serenity sun deck with its comfy sun beds and gorgeous views. The live shows and casino made the evenings fun and the Red frog was a big hit -one singer being particularly good. We did not book any Carnival trips as a friend who is an experienced cruiser advised us of the best public transport ( train from Citiavecchia - Rome EURO 5.30) and private taxi (from Naples to Pompeii EURO 90 return for 5 adults including 2 hour wait - booked at tourist info desk in Naples harbour. Did not get off at Marseille or Palma as have visited before and loved being on the ship in port as there was so much room and we could enjoy the pools. Although ship was busy on sea days there were still plenty of loungers and the spa and lots of other things to do. Will definitely choose a Carnival ship again if we can afford it Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Just back from a 12 night cruise aboard the brand new Carnival Magic ship in the Mediterranean (Barcelona, Monaco, Citivechia, Livornon, Naples, Dubrovnick, Venice and Sicily). This is a fantastic ship and if youve a family then ... Read More
Just back from a 12 night cruise aboard the brand new Carnival Magic ship in the Mediterranean (Barcelona, Monaco, Citivechia, Livornon, Naples, Dubrovnick, Venice and Sicily). This is a fantastic ship and if youve a family then there is something for everyone so lets keep this simple. Activities Waterpark - Fantastic for kids and adults with 2 x full size slides. SkyCourse - Brilliant idea for kids to climb safely above the deck. Sports square - Fully enclosed football and basketball court fantastic Crazy golf - very fun Gym and spa - Excellent Restaurants Northern lights - Food good buy on many nights queued 10 deep for a table. Lido market place - Plentiful but sometimes bland Del Capitano - Good service food average Rib House - Good food and service Indian, Deli, Burger bar and Pizza bar - excellent considering how many they have to make per day Ports Barcelona - Great city but need excursions Monaco - Fabulous, you can walk from the ship directly into the town Citivechia - Very industrial - need excursions Livorno - Yuk! Naples - Yuk! definitely need excursions Dubrovnik - Beautiful, again you can walk from port to town Venice - Majestic, and you can walk into town (dont bother with the water taxi or electric train) Sicily - Mmmm...its ok but you need an excursion Excursions - Here's the catch...Carnival excursions are incredibly expensive. The average trip was between $150 -250 per person. For a family of four it was a major expense and all you really get is a coach laid on with a guide. They will try to scare you by saying that if youre not on these trips and are late back then the ship will sail without you. We used the local taxi drivers who you simply agree a price with and they will look after you and only accept payment at the end of the day. We saved 75% on each trip! Gratuities and Tips Beware, this is not detailed enough. You will pay $10 per person per day. So a family of 4 sailing for 12 days = $480. But it doesnt end there, everything you purchase (drinks, sweets even opening a water in your room) adds a 15% gratuity, by the end of the trip its immense. We spoke to a member of staff and here's the deal - The staff do not receive any salary from Carnival (except a $75 a month retainer) gratuities and tips are actually their salaries. You are pretty much obliged to pay this fee. In the UK, a Tip is classed as a reward over and above their salary for good service and you choose to pay it or not. Beware this gets expensive. Debarkation Tricky one this as I know they need to get the ship ready quickly for the next set of people, however, from 5.45am they repeat constant tannoy announcements advising you to leave the ship as taxi's are hard to get, theres another ship docking and you dont want to be caught in the mad rush. Every 15 mins they tell you this and remind you its better to leave early. personally, this is my final thought from what was a brilliant cruise. I got the feeling of...'We've had youre money now get off'. A more civilised exit would of ended the holiday nicely. Overall 8 outa 10 just beware the costs Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
good bits. food in the restaurant was fantastic, every meal that we had was as good as a top restaurant and our serving team were fantastic. buffet food excellent but choose your time to go as 8am - 9am is very crowded.cabins spotlessly ... Read More
good bits. food in the restaurant was fantastic, every meal that we had was as good as a top restaurant and our serving team were fantastic. buffet food excellent but choose your time to go as 8am - 9am is very crowded.cabins spotlessly clean and room boy was always available and very friendly.ports of call excellent but you did not always have time to go far. very much enjoyed pompeii but take a tip if like me you are over 65 take your passport as members of the european community can get in free.and a tip if like us you arrive back in barcelona early and have many hours to kill, get a taxi back to thr airport and put your cases in left luggage then take the free shuttle to the other terminal and get the train to central barcelona (4 stops).it will cost you about 6 euros return and give you an extra day out.bad bits. the groups on the ship although musically brilliant were so loud. the worst area was around the pool where in was deafening. there was supposed to be a dress code although they allowed people in the restaurant in shorts and baseball caps. it seemed to get better as the week went on so i expect that somebody must have complained. we mentioned it to the maitre di but he brushed ir aside and avoided us for the rest of the week.overall i would score the criuse 7 out of 10 but the restaurant 10 out of 10 Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
I will begin with the registration in Spain, the smoothest check-in ever. Then our rooms were great. The excursions, that we booked through Carnival met our expectations and beyond. Our guides were so knowledgeable and we saw everything. ... Read More
I will begin with the registration in Spain, the smoothest check-in ever. Then our rooms were great. The excursions, that we booked through Carnival met our expectations and beyond. Our guides were so knowledgeable and we saw everything. Please keep in mind this cruise is very port intensive. We made a stop every day and then we only had one day at sea. That does not leave a lot of time for "fun Ship" activity time, and many people took a break near the end of our cruise, but not us... We went everyday non-stop we can rest when we get home. In Rome, which I would like to refer to as "Rome on Roller skates" due the fast pace that our guide took us, but Paola was wonderful allowing us to see so much in such a short amount of time. TAKE WATER with you. The guide in Pisa, Simona was wonderful too, we arrived at Pisa fist thing that morning and when we left that was when the crowds got very heavy. Make sure you bring change for the bathroom. R-R-Rosanna in Pompeii and the Amalfi coast was great! and Ignasio in Messina was the best! Let me say that if you are over 21 take the Mt. Etna and Wine tour. We were treated like family and the food was fabulous. WATCH YOUR TIME! Always take the Fun Ship newsletter with you so you know when to return to the ship. Allow time to get back to the ship. Many of our ports require you to go to a location either by bus, or shuttle. Make sure you watch the clock so that you don't end up at the dock waving good bye to the ship. We were told to hang on to our purses and wallets because there are people with sticky fingers. I didn't experience this, but I did keep up with my bags. John the cruise director was the best, he made us all laugh and we will never forget Pat Patterson and his wife Mary. They were the hits of the cruise. He also took time to read letters that passengers wrote to loved ones on the ship. That was a great way to honor the guest on the ship. All of the staff was helpful and the trip was the best ever. We are looking forward to Magic's arrival in Texas, but my husband and I will never forget this trip as long as we live. Thank you Carnival for such a wonderful time in Europe. We can't wait to take our children with us the next time. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
Just sailed on the 4th cruise of Carnival's New Magic in Europe. You're going like this ship. Very well thought out especially for the "family" oriented itineraries they're planning from Galveston, Texas this ... Read More
Just sailed on the 4th cruise of Carnival's New Magic in Europe. You're going like this ship. Very well thought out especially for the "family" oriented itineraries they're planning from Galveston, Texas this fall/winter season. Lots of space and planned programs for your kids 2-17. They divide them up well, age wise. Our 17 year old teenage girl loved the club style area for her age group. She met tons of other kids her age and they all seemed willing to hang out and have fun. Saw the 6-10 year olds a couple times eating and they were always smiling. The NEW adult Serenity area was nice for getting away. It's quiet, great for reading or just resting without crowds. LOVED the canopy beach beds. Comfy cozy. A hot tub was right there for those who needed relax. A big hit is the water slide. It was BIG and had enough twists and turns to make lots of people go back again and again. Lots of action on the rope walk too. Harnesses were very secure and safe. The cabins were fine, what can you do with a certain amount of space they've tried to make efficient. The cabin staff was outstanding, friendly, and very polite. Hopefully they go to the Caribbean too. Still doing the cute animal towels. Tried the open seating dining and liked the convenience of no time constraints. Only had one tough pork chop all week, didn't have many veggies for dinner menu. The buffet was well supplied and diverse from Burgers to burritos to sushi. New Italian restaurant was delicious, they would add peppers and sausage if you asked. Overall very surprised by the NEW carnival. Doesn't have to be a "party" boat anymore. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
We always wanted to visit Italy and when we found out we could also be on a ship's Inaugural Cruise we thought that was an opportunity not to be passed up. We really didn't know what we were in for being on the first cruise of a ... Read More
We always wanted to visit Italy and when we found out we could also be on a ship's Inaugural Cruise we thought that was an opportunity not to be passed up. We really didn't know what we were in for being on the first cruise of a ship, but to be honest, with very few exceptions, and some special events, you wouldn't have even noticed it was the first time out for the ship and crew. Embarkation was a breeze, they had a great system setup and we were on the ship very fast. Rooms were ready as it was the first cruise. We were on the ship at 1pm. The crew did a great job and showed no signs of being unfamiliar with either the ship or their jobs. Our Room Steward Edwin was the best we ever had. Before I get to that, let me talk about the ship. The Magic is not hugely different in appearance than the other 3 Carnival Ships we have been on, the Pride, Victory and Legend. The dEcor of the ship was tasteful and not overdone with a mixture of wallpaper with Tropical Birds and lots of Chrome and Glass Sconce lights that constantly changed colors. The balcony stateroom looked pretty much the same as the last one we were in with a few modern updates. Flat Screen TV's. A safe that you don't need a Credit card to open and close (You program a code and can change it as often as you like). When you first enter the room you have to put your room card in a slot in the wall to activate the cabin light switches. When you leave the room and take your card, the lights all go off in about a minute to save energy. Bathroom layout was exactly the same as the last ship we were on. Our room was 3 decks above the Red Frog Pub smoking area and we enjoyed second - hand smoke on our balcony most of the time. The ships layout took a little getting used to. The Atrium and main lobby (glass elevators) were the forward most elevators and very close to the Main Theatre. There were also a couple elevator stops that were specifically for the Forward Dining Rooms and if they were closed your were at a dead end when you got off the elevator. (Central Elevators Deck 3 and 4 for example) You just needed to learn to avoid them unless you were going to the Forward Dining Room to eat. Pools were nice, lots of room and rarely had a problem finding lounge chairs. Too cold most of the cruise to use them though. We did use the Hot Tubs on either side of Deck 5 that overhang the railings. Very cool, although the one nearest our cabin was again in a smoking area that made it unpleasant, The water Temp was also only 95 degrees which is not a very hot Hot tub. The Serenity Lounge was nice but hard to get one of the Clamshell seats for two. They weren't always occupied mind you, but always seem to have someone's towels and books and shoes on them with no one around. I think the ship will need to address that looking forward. Another oddity was there were only two bars open on the Lido Deck sometimes and they were both on the starboard side. Not a big deal unless you sat down on the port side in the buffet and then realized you needed a soda. It was about a 100 yard walk each way. Food was the usual fare, not a lot different except for the Asian Food stop which seemed pretty popular. One very positive change we noticed was NO trays in the dining rooms on the Lido deck. Instead you get a huge plate that was plenty big for lots of food. We actually liked this better than trays, and one by-product of this chang (not sure if the was intended) was there was noticeably less clamor of trays and carts from the bus persons. We ate at the Steakhouse one night,great food, small and cozy with a Japanese feeling dEcor, bright reds and dark woods with no tablecloths. Service was perfect. We didn't try the Italian Restaurant for Dinner, always seemed to be out of time, but we did go there for lunch and it was great. There is a $10 cover for dinner but not for lunch. The Red Frog Pub seemed very popular, ran out of beer once for a day or two, and was always packed. Almost made me want to take up drinking again. Almost.Entertainment: Overall. Pretty good. John Heald is very entertaining as Cruise Director and did a great job of embarrassing a few selected guests for the benefit of the rest of us. That's why I sit in the upper deck. We took in all early shows because we had long excursions almost every day. The usual big production was absent on this cruise except for the last night. Individual singers and/or comedians were the show most nights. Motown singer Mark Anthony put on great show, and Female Impressionist Karen Grainger did an outstanding show. The final night was the debut of the ship's singers and dancers and it revolved around Magician Jason Byrne. The show was pretty good, a very technical show with lots of disappearing and cutting a girl in two etc, and a great laser show. On the rest of the ship we enjoyed "Blood Power", a very entertaining rock group from the Philippines'. Excursions: We did all private excursions and used "All Around Italy" with Fabrizio, the Company Owner as our guide, most days. I will simply say he was the best, entertained us all day and was a riot driving us around Italy. Can't say enough about him. If you can book early and get him as tour driver, you won't be disappointed.Internet on Board: Tried it, it didn't work with my I-Phone and I got my money back. Heard a lot of complaints regarding down time. Ended up finding Hotspots at Port or paying a few Euros for an hour at the dock when we returned to the ship in the evening. We skipped Monaco due to High winds in the harbor. Special thanks to our Captain, Giovanni Cutugno for sailing us past the island of Stromboli and geeting us great nightime views of an erupting volcano. Never expected to see that in my lifetime!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
Carnival Magic Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.5 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 4.5 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.1
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.1

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