32 Carnival Magic Group and Theme Cruise Reviews

This was a chartered cruise adventure and i plan to address my issues with that group as well but many problems that i had personally made me want to go home by day 3 of a 7 day adventure. My cabinmates mainly kept our cabin clean prior ... Read More
This was a chartered cruise adventure and i plan to address my issues with that group as well but many problems that i had personally made me want to go home by day 3 of a 7 day adventure. My cabinmates mainly kept our cabin clean prior to service coming in but i was disappointed to see that an obvious makeup spill on my bunk stayed all week which let us know that bedding not changed. Food service lines were ridiculous and menu selections were bad. Dining room service was slow/2 hours to completely get our meals which caused us to miss shows. The entertainment venues were hot and air conditioning was also scarce in other parts of the ship. Mostly, this was an all-adult cruise that we had always had the option of hot tubs 24/7. The pools/hot tubs all shut down at 8p. Embarkment was a nightmare! It took 3 hours to find my final piece of luggage and i embarked in the first group. I loved the casino but smokers and poor ventilation made it difficult for me with my asthmatic condition Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Was on this cruise as part of a baseball camp/cross cultural game experience. I have cruised many times with both Carnival and Norwegian and have also cruised on Princess and Royal Caribbean. This ship has the most pleasant and ... Read More
Was on this cruise as part of a baseball camp/cross cultural game experience. I have cruised many times with both Carnival and Norwegian and have also cruised on Princess and Royal Caribbean. This ship has the most pleasant and accommodating staff that I have come in contact with in quite some time. They were all very welcoming throughout the course of the week unlike some ship reviews which have stated the staff appeared worn out and miserable. The food was also very tasty and the wait staff at our 8:15 seating were very accommodating. The buffets as usual were very crowded during peak times and even the dining room for breakfast had a wait. My cabin steward was excellent. Room kept in great condition, ice left as requested with towel animals further beautifying the cabin everyday. Didn’t see any of the shows in the main theatre but found the live music to be outstanding. Attended the Quest which was definitely R rated, and also experienced one comedian that was very good and another who should be fired. Arrived at around 1:30 and the lines moved briskly. Debarkation to the various ports was frustrating because people refused to follow directions and created traffic jams on the stairs and corridors as one person tried to stay a step ahead of the other person while at the same time trying to keep their group together. This brought things to a crawl. People did much better when we disembarked in Miami. The Magic as a ship is mid sized not too small but not so large that you become exhausted going from one end of the ship to the other. I would certainly go on the Magic again should it visit some ports that I have not experienced. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
This was my first cruise. While staying in the first dek my Stateroom Steward made my staying amazing . We were at Orlando the date before departure. Embarkation and disembarkation went smooth. The places visited (excursions) ... Read More
This was my first cruise. While staying in the first dek my Stateroom Steward made my staying amazing . We were at Orlando the date before departure. Embarkation and disembarkation went smooth. The places visited (excursions) transportation and eating was great. The activities , specially movie time was great. Love the comfortable sitting. Also, the eating areas, restaurants, pools, gym, we're impresive. The accommodations along the ship we're well distributed. All the ship services were great , service personnel were remarkable. We knew how to get along in the ship and all our questions were answered thanks to our Steward that was always there to help. Thanks to the great 7 great , magnificent days. The only thing I did not actually like was disembarkation in Belize. Actually there was no port to get in and we had to take these small boats not comfortable at all. Will like in a future no far away this can be taken care of . Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Turned out to be very good cruise and very interesting, diverse group of old and new friends. Captain Vito was wonderful, friendly and courteous to all. DJ Cookie is one of the best new entertainers to enjoy. Absolutely hilarious, ... Read More
Turned out to be very good cruise and very interesting, diverse group of old and new friends. Captain Vito was wonderful, friendly and courteous to all. DJ Cookie is one of the best new entertainers to enjoy. Absolutely hilarious, Cookie that is! :) First time I have not eaten every day on the Lido deck! Food was great for breakfast in the Main Dining Room with meeting and enjoying new friends. Did the Italian restaurant twice and enjoyed to the fullest. The waitresses and waiters sang both times; first time was way to loud but did enjoy and the second time was just right (sound). Other than an embarrassing incident by a guest, really enjoyed the restaurant. The Chef dinner was good but would have preferred to be in a private room, not the galley....hard of hearing and sounds bouncing off the walls (left early). Enjoyed Steakhouse so much couldn't eat breakfast! Did not have to order from Room Service and did not have ice cream.... All-in-all would cruise again on the Magic with or without same friends. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
First of all I was very pleased with the embarkation and disembarkation process, it is a faster process shorter lines. And instead of a cluster of people trying to get on the boat they call you by groups. I loved the ship, the cruise ... Read More
First of all I was very pleased with the embarkation and disembarkation process, it is a faster process shorter lines. And instead of a cluster of people trying to get on the boat they call you by groups. I loved the ship, the cruise Director DR, E WAS THE BEST!!!!!! we had a balcony room and it was very nice, We liked our cabin steward CHA CHA VERY ATTENTIVE . The Food was awesome, our waiter was nice and fun, Toshe and his team. I love Carnivals activities on the their ships, always a blast!! We did quite a few excursions that we booked threw Carnival , B.O.S.S underwater Scooters a must Do and we did Cave Tubing with lunch it was great as well. Guides were very fun and knowledgeable about the island very informative. One of the best Birthday trips, we were celebrating retirement, birthdays and anniversaries. We flew in early and stayed at the Residence Inn in Cocoa Beach the hotel stay was great. They have shuttles to take you to the cruise port. Dont forget the GREAT MASSAGES ON THE BOAT!!! the best Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Chose this cruise as part of a crochet cruise. We had a group of about 100 on board, with daily meetings in the conference space. With only 1/2 the conference center available to us (Park West was permanently in the other side), it was a ... Read More
Chose this cruise as part of a crochet cruise. We had a group of about 100 on board, with daily meetings in the conference space. With only 1/2 the conference center available to us (Park West was permanently in the other side), it was a bit crowded using tables with all of us working, but it was manageable. The cruise was originally an Eastern Caribbean but got rerouted to the Western route after hurricanes flattened all the eastern ports. We were on a back to back, so got to go to all the same ports twice. This review covers both weeks. Cabins: Our first week cabin was an upgrade - an exterior view cabin on Deck 1. Carnival had offered us the upgrade for $70. The cabin felt much more spacious than our usual interior, with enough space for a couch (pull out), and the porthole right above the gangplank - fantastic for people watching. The cabin also had two bathrooms - with the second one having a "bathtub" that might fit a small pre-teen for soaking and a sink (no toilet). However, it made a fantastic shower, and it was nice having the two rooms. Ship Info: Holds about 4700 people, but didn't feel massive. On sea days the Lido deck got crowded (as always), but there was always quieter space elsewhere. Smoking areas - a definite drawback on this design. The casino is smoking and open to the interior in both the 10-story closed atrium and the inside of deck 5. That left no place un-smoked. The Vibe nightclub on 5 is also smoking, and when in operation, the doors are left open. If you have issues with smoke, this may be a problem for you - our group avoided the nightclub after the first 10 minutes. Entertainment - not much to say here, as I skipped a lot of it. My favorite hangout was the Red Frog Pub on 5, next to the nightclub. The music there is predominantly country, and was mostly ignored by the patrons (good music, just not hitting the right mix for that gang). Reportedly the piano bar was fantastic, but I never got over to it. The various entertainers on the Ocean stage on 5 were ok, but nothing I found memorable. There was a classical duo performing in the atrium some evenings that was quite good, but more often it was over-amped singers or DJs. Dining - the Pig and Anchor Smokehouse is FANTASTIC!!! Too bad it's only open on embarkation and sea days - the lines were long but worth the wait. On Lido, Guys burgers were always a big hit, as was the Blue Iguana tacos. For lunch, the Mongolian Wok did a great mongolian grill, but the pathetic ventilation required lungs of steel to be anywhere near it due to the burning peppers - find a friend who can't smell, and has solid lungs to fix you a bowl and eat it elsewhere. The buffet was, well, Carnival's buffet - solid, reasonable variety, but not something to dance about. The Deli is open 11-11 and offers pre-made sandwiches that are heated up in ovens (no longer panini-pressed). They were able to offer me gluten-free rolls for the sandwiches which were fantastic. Outside the Tandoor indian station makes a great selection of kabobs and curries daily - well worth the stop in (they also know and can tell you whats in each dish if you have allergies). The pizza was apparently fantastic for the regular pizza, but the gluten-free crust (as with most GF crusts) tastes more like cardboard than anything else. The pasta bar on 11 was excellent - my preferred choice most days. You select the pasta you want, and the toppings and they're delivered to you. This restaurant was never over-crowded when I went, which provided a nice respite from the hordes. Dinner I had in the main dining room each night. The selection in the American Table is considerably more limited than some other lines but adequate - 4 main dishes plus a vegetarian curry plate most nights, with 6 or so appetizers to pick from. There's also "standard" items including grilled chicken (rubber - don't bother), pork chop (good), and flat iron steak (good) every night as choices or you can splurge and spend $20 for lobster or fancier steaks from the steak house (I didn't). The food was well prepared, but if you have food allergies, BEWARE! This was my 6th/7th cruise with Carnival, and I have never had to worry about getting hit with allergens before. There were three of us at the table with allergies (we consolidated the allergy gang week 2 at one table), and it was a game of "how are they going to try to kill us now" every course. On previous cruises, Carnival has done a fantastic job assisting me - usually with the maitre d' taking the order and checking. This now falls on the way overworked wait staff - who have apparently no training or understanding about the menu and allergies. The final dessert course was the home run - each of the three of us was served a dessert (chef's choice) that contained the first allergen on each of our lists. This put a severe damper on our experience, although we did turn it into a game (and we spoke to the head chef multiple times - each time, the offenses got worse). Embarkation was superbly smooth, as was disembarkation at Canaveral. We showed up at the appointed time, and moved swiftly through the various lines and onto the ship. Onboard, I found plenty of places to hang out with my fellow crocheters - although we congregated on 5 near the pub and at the back of Lido most times due to the delightfully damp weather the first week and the stiff breezes the second week. The chairs and couches are adequate, but get uncomfortable after the first hour or so throughout the ship. Ports: Cozumel - it was pouring rain week 1, so I stayed on board. The second week, we had reservations at Mr Sanchos' Beach Resort (the romance package, with chairs, a cabana and massages for two). We brought another couple along to share the cabana etc, and the four of us declared it was the best excursion ever - go for the grilled shrimp, best any of us had ever had. Belize - Week 1 we had a ShoreTrips excursion to the Belize Zoo and Altun Ha. Unfortunately, a tropical depression decided to form, so we had a monsoon during the entire excursion, for which we were unprepared. The zoo was fascinating, although the cats were smarter than the tourists - they stayed inside and dry. The tapir and monkeys made the trip worth it. Given the state of the ground, about 1/2 the group, including us, decided to skip the ruins and head back to port. Apparently the deluge stopped once they got to the ruins, letting loose a plague of insects (of course, it's a rain forest..), but everyone enjoyed it. Belize Week 2 - Carnival excursion Reef Snorkel and Starfish Island. Great excursion - they take great care to make us all feel safe snorkeling, and the rum punch flows liberally *after* the snorkel. The reef is beautiful, and many interesting things were seen. Starfish Island is 100% beach with a pay bar, and a hamburger stand, neither of which we took advantage of, choosing to sit in the comfy chairs and couches under the awning and read. The trip back to the ship featured entertainment by the catamaran crew, and was fantastic - worth the excursion fee by itself. (And that's not the free rum punch talking - I was drinking pure water, having taken Dramamine... the entire boat was rocking with most of the folks dancing along with the crew). Roatan - Week 1 - had reservations at little french key, but the tropical depression had followed us so we skipped it. I stayed on board while my wife shopped the port. Week 2 we both shopped the port - good way to kill an hour. Others headed for the attached beach for sun. Beware, though - I saw at least one port shop taking peoples passports over to the credit card machine with the passport pages open, and a burnt out light above it - possibly being photographed for duplication (although I may be overly suspicious) - don't let them get their paws on your ID, and use drivers licenses as ID for safety. Costa Maya - Week 1 - the depression was headed for Florida, leaving us with a nice clear day. Walked the port shops and back to the ship. This is a VERY short stop, so didn't do anything much. Week 2 we took advantage of the Carnival Beach excursion for $40 and were transported to a nice beach with free drinks, and beach chairs. Pleasant enough, except it got rainy, so we headed back relatively early. Probably would skip this stop in future. This was our 5th or 6th time on the Western Caribbean circuit, so we'd done much of the stuff before, and our light excursion schedule is a result. Cabin Week 2 - 7434 - Interior. Like every other interior :D Small, but only there to shower, change & sleep. Overall review summary - nice ship, well laid out. Only awkward routing - can't get fore to aft on 3, and on 5 the smoker (casino) is not bypassable so to get to 3rd floor Southern Lights cross on 4. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
This cruise was taken based upon a group vote of various cruise lines and itineraries. We had a group of 46 on board, embarkation was fairly quick and smooth. Staff was friendly and helpful. We had an interior cabin on deck just below pool ... Read More
This cruise was taken based upon a group vote of various cruise lines and itineraries. We had a group of 46 on board, embarkation was fairly quick and smooth. Staff was friendly and helpful. We had an interior cabin on deck just below pool deck, do not recommend that again as when they would move chairs around at night you could hear it in the room. Cabin was a decent size for an interior, about a foot of room on either side of bed to walk around. The shows in theater were good, mostly musicals of some sort. Comedy was ok, but not that funny. There didn't seem to be as many activities on Lido deck as I thought there would be, but the overall amount of things to do seemed to be good. Service was excellent, I was really surprised the staff wasn't as pushy with selling drinks as they had been in the past. Really liked that. Loved DR.E as cruise director, he was awesome other than one disappointment. One thing our group as a whole was upset about was the Cruise Critic Meet N Mingle party we sort of didn't have. Our group attended, but didn't see any of the others that had enrolled there. There were two ladies from housekeeping, and no one else at first. One officer showed after a bit, and another gentleman, they left to go find Dr. E as he was the one that was supposed to "head up" the meeting from what we were told. He never showed, nor did anyone ever come back to let us know what was going on. I called down from the meeting room before we all left to Guest Services, and they said they would see if they could find him but nothing was done. Later that day I went down to Guest Services, and they brushed it off saying that our party was only from 5:30 to 6 pm. I explained that yes, we knew that but that someone was supposed to be there and no one was. They just said they were sorry and that there was nothing they could do. We were NOT happy campers/cruisers at this point feeling let down as we have been to other Cruise Critic parties and enjoyed them. I think the best thing about this cruise for one, was the Guy's Burger Joint. My husband ate there every day. We did finally get to try the Barbecue place of his, and surprisingly weren't too thrilled with it. For one, it's not open every day, and only for a very short period of time. The food there was just ok, nothing to write home about like we were expecting. The pool on the Lido deck was quite small, but the hot tubs on the sides were very nice sized. Overall, it wasn't a bad experience, just not our most enjoyable one on Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
The ship is laid out well. Highly recommend the spa pkg - enjoyed the heated tile beds and steam rooms. Food was very good. We sampled the following food venues: Tandoor, buffet, Pig & Anchor, pizza, Guys Burgers, dining room ... Read More
The ship is laid out well. Highly recommend the spa pkg - enjoyed the heated tile beds and steam rooms. Food was very good. We sampled the following food venues: Tandoor, buffet, Pig & Anchor, pizza, Guys Burgers, dining room (dinner & breakfast), Blue Iguana Cantina, room service (breakfast) - we enjoyed all of them! Wish they had more available time for Pig & Anchor as it is only on sea days for about a 2 hour window. Drinks were great and not watered down. The dining room staff had good and bad days - sometimes service was a bit slow. However, they were always pleasant and fun. Lots going on all the time. Enjoyed the décor and our cruise director: Reverand Dr. E. The sail away party was lots of fun. Disembarkation was a bit disorganized. They provided information that seemed like it would work well, but they did not stick to it which let to confusion and quite a few "bottle-necks" on the way off the ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Dining was good. Comedians was very good but rest of the other entertainment not so good. Smell of sewage was real bad. Embarkation and disembarkation was very very slow. Very crowded but it was Super Bowl 2017 Cruise. We ... Read More
Dining was good. Comedians was very good but rest of the other entertainment not so good. Smell of sewage was real bad. Embarkation and disembarkation was very very slow. Very crowded but it was Super Bowl 2017 Cruise. We had an Oceanview cabin on the first floor. Never again will I ever stay on first floor of any ship again. The noise was terrible and not from above but from below. Beating and banging all the time. Hard to sleep sometimes. The smell after just one day coming up through the shower drain and sink drains, toilet also was very bad. I have very sensitive smell. Which is bad on my part. Even though there was pros and a lot of cons I will still continue to cruise just not Carnival Magic.. My husband and I are frequent cruisers & this was our first time on the magic. Out Steward Raul was the best. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
The Northern Lights dining area service was not up to our normal expectations. Staff seemed overwhelmed at times and getting seating for a large group was near impossible. We waited hours that is correct more than an hour for a table ... Read More
The Northern Lights dining area service was not up to our normal expectations. Staff seemed overwhelmed at times and getting seating for a large group was near impossible. We waited hours that is correct more than an hour for a table multiple nights. The food was also sub par. The meat was overcooked and the food luke warm at best. Service at the bar areas and other common areas was great but not in the Northern Lights Dining rooom. We also noticed a strong "sewage" odor on all floors in the aft ship area including the rear common area. Staff either are used to it or were ignoring it as they never responded to complaints or offerred solutions. Ship activities seemed plentiful but in every common area that we tried to enjoy a quiet drink the music was VERY loud. I even complained a couple of times with the staff stating that this was normal so everyone could hear. I couldn't hear myself think! Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
My husband and I have been on five cruises together and each have been on a few before we met. Our last three cruises were all on Royal Caribbean ships with the last two being on the Oasis and Allure. Though we love the Royal Caribbean ... Read More
My husband and I have been on five cruises together and each have been on a few before we met. Our last three cruises were all on Royal Caribbean ships with the last two being on the Oasis and Allure. Though we love the Royal Caribbean ships and some of their shows, we found the nightlife options lacking for people in our age group (low-mid forties). This time we went in search for a ship that had entertainment options that would appeal to us, and in that we very much succeeded in booking the Carnival Magic. After we booked this cruise, we ended up having two other couples, also in their 40s, join us. We all loved most things about this cruise. Our room was a balcony room mid-ship, cabin 8291. It was pretty roomy for a cruise stateroom. I was very happy with the layout of the room and the size of the balcony. It's also a great central location to use as a starting point for getting around the ship. The cabin attendant was not quite what we have grown used to on the RC ships, though. He never came to introduce himself when we first arrived. We finally met him halfway through the cruise in the hallway. Our friends in the cabin next to ours had to call to have their cabin cleaned again because when they first arrived to their cabin, there was sticky stuff on the couch and hairs on the toilet. There were other small things like if we brought a drink back to our room, the empty glass would be left in the room for days and not taken when it was cleaned. These were not huge giant things and certainly didn't ruin our time in any way, we've just been spoiled in the past where our room attendants were so perfect that now these little things stood out as unusual. We absolutely loved our dining room attendant. We ate early dinner in the dining room each evening. We unanimously all thoroughly enjoyed our meals every day and had a very sweet, very attentive dining staff. They ran out of Moscato on the ship a few days before debarkation, which was a disappointment, but otherwise everything was great with dining. We were so pleased with the food choices on this ship, that we never tried any of the dining upgrades. Guy's Burgers were FANTASTIC! You wouldn't think that burgers being produced for the masses beside a pool could be one of the best burgers you've had, but they are. The Pig and Anchor BBQ on deck 5 was also super delicious. My husband also enjoyed the pizza enough to have some almost every night. :) I was so obsessed with Guy's Burgers that I personally never had the burrito bar but my friends said it was great, too. If you go on the Magic, make sure to visit the Alchemy bar, which was our favorite, by far. Not only do they have delicious, unusual drinks on their menu they also had the best bartenders who would be happy to whip you up something to your liking. By the 2nd day we figured out this was by far the best bar and we'd head there to get a drink before heading somewhere else. The Red Frog Pub was our least favorite. We liked the setup of it and it looked like a cool, fun place but they had a bartender in training in there who kept messing up the drinks. For instance, we ordered something off the menu that was a chocolate drink. We had it the day before and it was delicious. Then on this order, we received something fruity with coconut rum (yuck...I hate coconut rum). We told them it wasn't what we ordered so then they bring us new drinks. They look right, they at least look chocolate. We all take a drink and it's obvious that someone took that initial fruity/coconut drink and somehow added chocolate -- which was a weird, very bad combination. By this time we had been waiting forever and still didn't have what we ordered so we just left. Not a giant deal because the Alchemy bartenders did everything perfect every time so we just learned to always to there. Now, let's get on to the FUN part of the fun ship. In comparison to the RC cruises we have been on, I'd have to say the Magic was definitely a huge step up on the fun scale. The DJ played fun, popular dance type music by the pool. The shows had rock-n-roll and movies themes. The comedy club was hilarious. We loved the piano bar and went there nightly (as it gets later in the night the dirtier jokes come out in the piano bar... and we appreciate that kind of humor). They held karaoke in multiple venues but sometimes it was in the big theater. There were some 80's themed parties. It was exactly what we were hoping for as far as finding a cruise ship more aimed at our age group. When we were looking more for some relaxation, the Serenity Deck was perfect for that. Our last sea day we explored some other parts of the ship that might be aimed a bit more at the kids, but are also fun for those of us who are still kids at heart. The water slides were fun (the red one with the toilet bowl at the end was more fun as it went faster). We tried the rope courses which were pretty cool and had a mean game of bean bag toss. The one disappointment for my husband was the casino. He generally enjoys gambling some on cruises but they do not divide the casino in any way. RC ships have smoking on one side and none on the other. Although the smoke still drifts over at least you can gamble without someone right next to you blowing smoke in your face. He tried to go gamble our 2nd day and didn't make it more than 10 minutes before the smoke started to get to him (and he used to be a smoker). Unfortunately, you have to walk through the casino to get around the ship so you're forced to go through the smoke over and over again. Nobody we traveled with smokes, though half are former smokers, and each of us really hated passing through the casino. If there is one thing they should focus on as a top priority it should be figuring out how to filter out that smoke better or giving a smoke free side. It was seriously gross. We got the fastest internet package because we had to do business from the ship. It was okay, nowhere near as good as the internet we had on RC Oasis and Allure. Wi-Fi calling worked, but not well. It didn't work well enough to use. Text messages took sometimes up to 8 hours to come through. We found that we communicated better using apps like Facebook Messenger and I was Snapchat texting my daughter at home. I couldn't stream Pandora half the time so though they said they supported things like NetFlix, there's no way that would work well when Pandora didn't. Our cruise director, Schwartz, was great! He was full of energy and funny and just overall a likable guy. For me, the good far outweighed the bad. I would most definitely go on the Carnival Magic again. Now, onto the ports and excursions. Our first stop was Cozumel. We've been to Cozumel many times and it's one of our favorite cruise stops. We headed to Chankanaab and did the Dolphin Swim, Push, Pull buffet lunch excursion. This is the third time my husband and I swam with dolphins at this park and we've each done it elsewhere. This is, by far, the very best place to swim with dolphins! My mother-in-law is a travel agent and "professional cruiser" and she'll tell you the same. Be *sure* if you are signing up for a dolphin swim in Cozumel that it's Chankanaab that you do it at. There's another location they do dolphin swims and it doesn't compare. The buffet lunch was horrible but it included free drinks so that's fine. Just plan to snack there, there will be plenty of food on the ship when you get back! LOL. Allow yourself extra time to explore the park. It's a great destination in itself. One warning on the dolphin swim... they won't let you bring cameras and will want to sell you exorbitantly prices photos at the end. They will barter on the photos, so do yourself a favor and don't just pay full price right up front. We went to Belize next. We had read that there's a lot of crime in Belize so we wanted to pick an excursion where we weren't driving around Belize City. Based on reviews, we chose the Shark, Rays and Island Getaway. Sounds scary, I know...but DO THIS EXCURSION!! It was soooooo awesome! We took an hour boat ride out to Caye Caulker where we did a quick bathroom stop. From there we headed out to a reef and did some snorkeling. Then we got back on the boat and drove a short distance to a shallow area where they lured in nurse sharks and sting rays. Nurse sharks do not bite and they are big but not huge. You get in the water with your snorkel masks on where the sharks and rays swim around your legs. The sharks were much more skiddish than the rays and left faster. It was so neat to get so close to those creatures! We then went back on the boat and went to Caye Caulker, a really cute island where we had lunch and a little time to walk around and explore. We then got back on the boat and they took us to a spot with these giant fish, Tarpon. They handed us small fish and we held them out of the water where they jumped out and grabbed them from our hands. I got a couple little scrapes from their razor sharp teeth on my fingers, but it was worth it. Then we headed back. Oh, I should also mention the tour guides were great! Friendly, informative and fun. Mahogany Bay was next. We had a wonderful beach day there. There was a lot you could do there and all kinds of equipment rentals. After two big excursions the days before, we wanted a day of relaxation. We rented floats for the water and just went between water and beach chairs. There were waiters there to bring us drinks and fun music coming from the restaurant. The water was very calm there and it was perfect for just floating around and enjoying the beautiful day. It's a gorgeous stop and we all really loved it. Our only complaint was that, even though it is a private location for Carnival guests, our sail and sign cards didn't work there, which meant our drink package didn't apply and food wasn't included. When you are at a Royal Caribbean private stop, your food and drinks work the same as if you were on the ship... free food and your drink package includes drinks at that stop. That's the one thing Carnival could do to make that stop even better. Our final port was Costa Maya. Honestly, we had to be back on the ship by 1:30 so that day wasn't a great day for planning much. If you like to shop, you will like the Costa Maya stop. Shopping isn't my thing so we just got off the ship for a short while. In summary, if you are looking for a more upbeat, FUN experience then I definitely recommend the Carnival Magic. That is what we had in mind and that's what we got. We, three couples in their 40s, had a blast. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We chose this cruise because of the dates and ports to visit. We always try to visit at least 1 new port every time we cruise. We had a group of 7 this time, most of us in our 50's, one 75 and 1 was 19 (our son). We had a blast and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the dates and ports to visit. We always try to visit at least 1 new port every time we cruise. We had a group of 7 this time, most of us in our 50's, one 75 and 1 was 19 (our son). We had a blast and were pleasantly surprised that there were not more drunks being obnoxious all over! Many families and people of all ages. We have sailed from Port Canaveral many times and it usually goes very smooth. We stayed overnight in Cocoa Beach and our hotel has park and cruise guests processing in and out down to almost perfect timing. There were many of us departing on a cruise that day. Embarkation went quite smoothly. Once we were allowed onboard, we found that the dining room was opening in about 10 minutes so we waited for that vice going to the Lido, which is usually quite hectic and confusing. We ate most of our meals in the dining rooms vice the Lido due to allergies and just enjoying not having to stand in lines or fight for a drink. Guy's burgers were great and most of the dining room food was good, hot or at least very warm. Sometimes some of the choices were not to my liking but mostly because of my allergies, but our waitstaff was great. was a bit disappointed with the "American Table theme tho. They memorized our names immediately and were very helpful even when they were so busy. We did hate walking thru the casino due to the smoke, but otherwise, we were not bothered by smokers very much. We played a lot of trivia which we always enjoy. Always a good time. Most of the service in all areas of the ship was pretty good. We had a cabin (handicapped accessible) in the spa area of deck 11 and that was great! Our son, 19, hung around with someone from the group part of the time and by himself the rest of the time but said he really enjoyed the cruise. Meals were always fun and we loved all the kids thinking my husband was Santa (he is actually)!! so many little ones had their vacations made by "Santa" taking a photo with them or talking with them. We have sailed a variety of the lower priced cruises and still enjoy most of our Carnival ones. The Military reception was really great and informative, and Schwartz was a great cruise director! Was not impressed with the shopping expert. She was long winded and repeated information too many times. We didn't do excursions in every port, but 3 of us did the Monkey Jungle in the Dominican Republic and had a blast. Then we 3 also went snorkling in Grand Turk and it was fun too, but getting dropped off on the beach and having to find our way back to the port area was NOT fun. I had a really hard time walking in the sand and ended up using my scooter for the rest of the time onboard due to pain in my knees and ankles from walking in the sand. The crew on the boat was very good and helpful, highly recommend the Ultimate Snorkling adventure and the Monkey Jungle. We would go again on this ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
I chose this cruise mostly because it fit into my very short Christmas break this year. I am a teacher and I have a 14 year old who is also in school. We also have never been to Belize so we pick this cruise. This is my 5th Carnival ... Read More
I chose this cruise mostly because it fit into my very short Christmas break this year. I am a teacher and I have a 14 year old who is also in school. We also have never been to Belize so we pick this cruise. This is my 5th Carnival cruise so I moved up to gold status. It was also my favorite ship. Nicely done... not tacky with weird color schemes. They did a wonderful job celebrating Christmas. Lots of holiday decorations including Hanukkah. The food was spread out throughout the ship so lines were long at all I wish the of the specialty food sections were open longer or in the evening. If you went on an excursion you missed some of them. The entertainment was okay at first but got better. The last show America Rocks was fantastic. I wish they had more activities beside trivia. There were no line dancing or other dance group lesson like all the other ships I have been on. Wish there were more live music dancing bands. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This was our first Halloween Cruise. I loved being able to dress in costume and not be the only adult. Some of the costumes were questionable but there were a lot of great ones. The ship didn't seem to crowded even with 4000 ... Read More
This was our first Halloween Cruise. I loved being able to dress in costume and not be the only adult. Some of the costumes were questionable but there were a lot of great ones. The ship didn't seem to crowded even with 4000 people. There was plenty of room for everyone except for when we were all waiting to get into the one and only musical production they had for the entire week. Some of the other cruisers were pretty rude during this trip, but the staff was excellent and made up for any bad experiences. My biggest complaint was the night club was closed most of the time for "private event". I missed getting to dance every night. Aside from only having one big show production, the entertainment was very good. I missed the comedians because there was always something else I wanted to do instead, but my friends said that they were good. I loved getting to watch movies under the stars. It rained on and off the entire week so it made the chair selection thin because there is limited space under a cover, but you can't fault Carnival for the weather. Dr. E was the best. I thoroughly enjoyed his morning messages and his Q&A was hilarious. In fact, everything he did was hilarious. The food was really good and plentiful. I never had a problem finding a seat on Lido. There was never a dull moment. There were several things that I would have liked to do but just didn't have the time. I will have to cruise again and skip the excursions so I can enjoy all the ship has to offer. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Who Cruised : My Fiancee, Myself, My mother, My sister, and 4 friends. Cruise Purpose : Wedding and Honeymoon Cruise Dates : 9/24/2016 - 10/1/2016 Departure Port : Port Canaveral Ship : Carnival Magic The Wedding ... Read More
Who Cruised : My Fiancee, Myself, My mother, My sister, and 4 friends. Cruise Purpose : Wedding and Honeymoon Cruise Dates : 9/24/2016 - 10/1/2016 Departure Port : Port Canaveral Ship : Carnival Magic The Wedding ------------ My now wife and i booked this cruise for an in port wedding and honeymoon cruise with some family and friends. We chose this because it seemed pretty reasonable in price in comparison to a more standard wedding and because we thought the built in honeymoon would be a blast. Wedding Positives : 1) The food was delicious. Honestly way better than it had any right to be and was far superior to anything i ate on the cruise for the rest of the trip. 2) The open bar had top shelf liquors and good quality pours. No complaints from any of our guests about that. 3) The photographer was awesome. He was everywhere he needed to be and was completely out of the way at the same time. Props to him. 4) The venue on the ship was pretty nice for what it was. Its not going to rival some giant chapel or anything but it was elegant and clean. 5) The wedding planner was on top of everything and was extremely good about calming and reassuring the bride. 6) The service at the wedding was amazing. Wedding Negatives : 1) The did a hand pat down of the bride when we went through security. That felt a bit crazy. Who is going to spend thousands of dollars booking a wedding and a cruise a year in advance to try and sneak a weapon in on the bride? C'mon port security thats ridiculous. 2) We were the 2nd wedding on the ship (each cruise allows 2) but because we booked 2nd we could only get the 1 hour reception which honestly felt way to short. Im not even sure the bride and i had time to go around and talk to everyone. The reception felt pretty rushed because of this. 3) The price of the photo packages can only be described as absurd. Seriously. $500 for the lowest package with is 30 total photos and no digital copies. The wedding video is an extra $500 dollars. We bought the video because it was exceptionally well done however the price we felt was almost extortion. 4) Once the wedding party was allowed through security everything felt chaotic. Everyone was split up so we lost the mother of the bride and she wasn't able to get to the bride's cabin before the wedding. This felt poorly planned by the wedding coordinator and port security. 5) The wedding staff ASSURED ME they would save the wedding cake for us to have for our anniversary. However once on board the ship we were guaranteed that customs would not allow us to take the cake off the ship and to not even bother as "50 other weddings have tried it and it never works". I'm here to tell you to give some of your cake to a trusted friend who isn't cruising and have them save it for you. Wedding Overall : Honestly despite the complaints above, everyone had a good time and i think it was worth the money. I'd give it an 8/10 for the overall experience. The Cruise ----------- Both my fiancee/wife and i were first time cruisers so please keep that in mine while reading this review. I do however feel like we did a pretty good job in preparing knowledge wise for the cruise itself. The Room --------- We got a inside room on deck 12 which is the Serenity Spa Level on the Carnival Magic. This cost a little more but gave us access to the hot tub and other spa amenities for the duration of the cruise. It also put us on the top floor which had some pluses and minuses. Room Positives : 1) I think we were both pleasantly surprised with the size of the room. It felt reasonably spacious for a place we didn't plan on spending much time in anyway. 2) They added some great touches because of the wedding. Rose petals on the bed, writing on the mirror, cute little heart towels designs etc. It made the room feel special. 3) The bedding felt great. I thought the bed had a good firmness to it and the sheets felt great on your skin. My wife liked the pillows but i personally thought they were too thin. 4) Room was decorated nicely and was very clean when we got it. 5) The water pressure in the shower was excellent. Honestly i have had far worse water pressure in many hotels or apartments than i did on this trip. 6) There was a pretty reasonable amount of storage for everything we needed. We did find that while there was no good storage for luggage we were able to slide them under the bed which saved a lot of room. Room Negatives 1) It was WARM in the room. Like all the time. The entire cruise. We had the thermostat cranked all the way down and it seemed to be just a decoration as we saw no change in the temperature. Keep in mind we are from Florida and are used to the heat. In fairness to Carnival i didn't complain about this to anyone because it wasn't until the trip was almost over that i went in anyone else's room and found out it wasn't the normal temperature. 2) The room needs more hangars. We simply didn't have enough of them to put all of our clothes up. However again in fairness i didn't ask for any extra hangars, i just folded the stuff and moved on. Not the end of the world. 3) The shower was not big enough for two people. This may not matter for the most part but on a honeymoon cruise it sort of put a damper on some activities. Room Overall : 9/10 The Spa -------- We made pretty decent use of the Spa since we paid to book a room on this level and quite frankly this ended up being the largest disappointment for me on the trip. Spa Amenities Positives : 1) The only TRUE hot tub on the deck is here and its amazing. It was large and comfortable and setting was just great. 2) They offer a large menu of services. Spa Amenities Negatives : 1) The labeling of some of the services varies depending on your point of view from terrible to downright deceptive. My wife and i ordered the following item. Please note this description is VERBATIM from the Spa Offering sheet : Villa Massage and Bathing Ritual Spend some quality time with the one you love or the one you love to be with in the privacy and seclusion of our exclusive Villa Suites. Enjoy a deeply relaxing Couples Massage as you lie side by side and then immerse yourself in a warm, relaxing Bathing Ritual that will renew your spirit and enhance this special occasion........................75 minutes This is an outright false description. The bath, which we were honestly looking forward to the most, could not be farther from a "warm relaxing bath". It is an ICE COLD seaweed bath that we didn't even stay in for the entire allotted time because we were both so uncomfortable. When i mentioned this to the Spa Employees they told me it was supposed to be that way. For the incredibly high price of this treatment we were not at all pleased and honestly would like a refund. 2) I ordered a shave. To be exact this specific treatment : Elemis Pro-Collagen Grooming Treatment with Shave. One would expect when paying for a shave that a straight razor is used or at least a safety razor as has always been the case in literally any other shaved i have ever received from a barber. However in this case they basically used a Mach 3 Gillette razor which is not at all relaxing and i simply could have done it myself. While the advertisement for this service does not specifically mention a straight razor shave, i think it is assumed. Also the "hand and arm massage" was about 30 seconds per arm. I don't think it even counted. 3) The spa personnel spent as much time trying to sell me and wife things at the end of the treatments as they did performing them. For the amount of money i'm paying for the service i don't need the mandatory up-sell at the end at all. It absolutely ruins the relaxing mood you are in at the end of a massage. Spa Overall : 2/10 This is the only thing i hated on this ship and i would never under any circumstances recommend anyone else utilize this on board the Magic. The Food --------- Ahh yes the thing every first time cruiser hears so much about! The magic had listed a pretty large variety of places to eat but by the end of the trip i was ready to be eating something else. Instead of giving you negatives and positives, i will review each place to eat on the Magic. 1) Guy's Burger Joint : Maybe it was the alcohol, maybe they are just really good, but our whole party ate way to many of these burgers on this trip. The line was reasonable and fast moving the vast majority of the time. The patties are very thin so i recommend a double and they give you like 6 fries so i would ask for extra. However the quality was on point. 8/10 2) Pizzeria del capitano : Basically the only thing open on the ship at night and our go to before bed snack. We tried every pizza they had. Get the pepperoni and don't even THINK ABOUT the others. This is not "good pizza" but when you are drunk at 3am its good enough. 7/10 3) Guy's Pig and Anchor BBQ : The thing i looked forward to most on this trip as i LOVE BBQ. However this thing is quite literally NEVER OPEN. Was able to eat there once in seven days. Its also hidden on the outside of the 5th deck with no sign visible from the inside so its a pain in the butt to find. The food was ok but nothing compared to a real BBQ place. 4) Mongolian Wok : I literally was never able to try this as i think it was only open on days that start with Q and coincide on a full moon. Is it good? Who the hell knows. No one i could find was able to eat there at all. 5) BlueIguana Cantina : Honestly the star of the ship. Skip the buffet and the restaurant and get the breakfast burrito here. By far the best morning food you will find on this boat. I recommend you get the regular eggs instead of the Mexican eggs as the latter seemed very watery. 10/10 6) Chef's Table : Didn't spring for this extra experience. 7) Seaday Brunch : An absolutely bizarre experience. The steak an eggs is server with filet mignon which tasted twice as good as the tough piece of mean i got from the steakhouse. However the pancaked where clearly formed out of some space-age material not meant to be consumed by humans. Try this place once if you want or just skip it and get breakfast burritos. 5/10 8) Carnival Steakhouse : Our 8 person party ate here the first night on the boat (our wedding night) and 4 of us hated our steaks so bad we went and ate elsewhere afterwards. The other 4 people shared theirs with us and they were absolutely delicious. We never went back here because $35 dollars for a so-so steak seemed like a rip-off. 9) Lido Buffet : This was OK. As expected the lines were crazy and the food was decent. Nothing to write home about but no one got food poisoning so that's a win. 6/10 10) Dining Room : This was hit or miss. The desserts were excellent and the appetizers were generally on point. I recommend the french onion soup and the shrimp cocktail. The main courses were extremely random. Some were amazing, some might not have been edible. The nice thing is, if you don't like what you get, just get something else because it's included. Food overall : 6/10 Service : ---------- All im going to say about this is that the service was impeccable. Every single person i spoke to or relied on was excellent in almost all situations. These people don't get paid enough. 12/10 Entertainment -------------- There were plenty of things to do on this ship. The vibe nightclub was alive past midnight, the comedians were pretty good overall, the slides were fun to go down and there was almost always some kind of show on. So i'm only going to discuss the negatives below. However please don't think i didn't have a fantastic time because i did. 1) The comedy shows were generally at 9:30 and 11:30. Sometimes there was an additional show at 10:30. If you have an 8:15 dinner time its not ever possible to make the 9:30 show as you have to be in line about 30 minutes prior to the show starting to get a seat. 2) Some shows like the burlesque show are not possible to see unless you are in the front. The seating arrangement is not at all good in the spotlight theater. Some extra special highlights : 1) The cruise director "Reverend E" is simply incredibly. He must wake up and put his game face on every single day because you can't catch him not being contagiously funny and enthusiastic. If he is putting on an event, you want to see it. It's that simple. 2) The lady who was singing at the Piano bar was freaking awesome. Great voice and personality. 3) The lovely lady signing at the bar on the 3rd floor lounge was absolutely killing it. Excursions ----------- 1) Our first stop was the Dominican Republic (Amber Cove). We chose to not schedule an excursion here and instead our group of 7 just found a cab right off the pier for $90 total for the day. Luis, our driver too us all over the city to an Amber Museum, rum factory, chocolate factory, and a delicious local restaurant. Other than the food, total cost was about $15 dollars a person. No way you are getting a better deal at this port. FAIR WARNING : If you are a nervous person the driving here may scare the crap out of you. It was nothing for a few of us who have been in the middle east but some of the girls were very scared at times. 2) Our second stop was St Thomas. We bought an excursion here for a Eco-hike, kayak and snorkel trip. No complaints here except we were absolutely starving at the end of the trip. I'd pack some food with you for this one. 3) Third stop was San Juan. We literally walked the city for 5-6 hours. This was everyone's favorite place. So much to see. The food was amazing, good shopping, awesome forts to explore. 4) Finally we stopped at Grand Turk. We were all looking forward to this one as it had the only excursion we pre-booked which was a catamaran snorkel and beach trip. This was far and away the worst excursion we took. We literally snorkeled for 20 minutes and were at the beach for maybe 35 minutes. The vast majority of the time was spent going 5 mph in the water so the crew could dance with people. Do NOT book this excursion. All in all this was way more fun than i expected and while there were some things that annoyed me about the trip (again namely the spa and the food) over all i had an incredible time. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Got a great rate when we booked this cruise.....after the week...it may be a while before we sail Carnival again...just way too many drunks! I enjoy a cocktail or 3, but when people get on board and spend the entire week drunk, it's ... Read More
Got a great rate when we booked this cruise.....after the week...it may be a while before we sail Carnival again...just way too many drunks! I enjoy a cocktail or 3, but when people get on board and spend the entire week drunk, it's just too much. CD was very good, but his parties in the evening should have been on deck rather than inside the ship....too many people in the lobbies made it hot and uncomfortable! Finally, don't know if it's just me, or if anyone else noticed the lack of personality of the service staff....often hard to get a server (especially in the casino) to order a drink...and I saw quite a few staff talking to each other while working-never noticed that on our previous cruises. As for the entertainment....I'd struggle to give a lot of it 5/10! You couldn't hear yourself singing karaoke....the piano bar was too full of drunks to enjoy....the Carnival Quest was in a room too small for the crowd, and too quickly went for the lowest common denominator-when women were encouraged to twerk the CD and then "serenade" him with orgasm sounds, we had enough! Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was a different experience and a new boat for us. I certainly learned the hard way about using gift cards to fund my sign and sail pass. Bare with me through the rant. I was short on cash this trip-and unlike the previous sailing ... Read More
This was a different experience and a new boat for us. I certainly learned the hard way about using gift cards to fund my sign and sail pass. Bare with me through the rant. I was short on cash this trip-and unlike the previous sailing on the liberty of the seas, I had always just used a credit card attached to my sail pass. I was on a budget this year-and needed to use gift cards. 1. you cannot load cash into your sign and sail with giftcards from the carnival website-you must go to the guest services desk and have them load them onto your account. This is where all the trouble began. I literally had SEVEN $100 gift cards. So the gentleman loaded them all and then he said to me 'better keep them on hand just in case'. Literally by the next day my sign and sail card was declined and I had to go to the desk again. None of the mastercards went through-ONLY the american expresses took without issue. The girl behind the desk let me use their satellite phone to call the credit card company. I was told there was a 7% fee for using the card, so when the gent first loaded them-none of them took. The girl then had to reload ALL of the mastercards for a lesser amount. When I got home I checked all the balances leftover and they were crazy all over the place. Moral of the story? Don't save your gift cards, just use cash or one credit card if you can help it. 2. the purchasing of water was cheaper this time, about $4.50 a case, and is easily delivered to your state room on the first day. The drink restrictions have changed-but you can still carry on 1 bottle per adult, and a 12 pack of whatever beverage [cans] you want to haul around. No more coolers though. 3. We hit 4 ports this round, Amber cove [went atv'ing it was boring but a nice breeze made it worth while]. Also in Amber cove is a really nice pharmacy-take advantage of it! I purchased prednisone and wished I got more. St. Thomas [I highly recommend china king [next door to hooters], they have the best mongolean beef ive ever eaten. The jewelry shops there are a joke. Don't bother thinking you're getting a good deal any more-I spoke to several jewelers about random diamond pieces they had in their shops [and we're talking 1-2cttw rings of melee diamonds] and they were OUTRAGEOUSLY priced. Then we hit up San Juan and took an ATV excursion there to a 2200 acre working farm. READ the instructions on your tickets! You need your drivers license and a credit card for damages to the ATV [of which you get back your full receipt if there was no damage] and it was WELL worth it. Not for the light of heart, you will get banged up and bruised if you're afraid of the machines. It is some serious hard core riding. Two hours worth to be exact. I came home muddy from head to toe. Another GREAT surprise in San Juan are the street vendors!!! Every accessory you could ever hope to own ladies [and I DO mean every-especially hand bags.. wink wink, and WALLETS!] just gorgeous. Our last port was Turks and Caicos. The entire island is one big white sand beach. But this is not for the faint of heart. I hope you have an umbrella of your own-because fighting an entire cruise ship for a spot on the beach outside the dock was more than we could handle. There is not a lot of shade..plan on bringing the strong block and melting, the heat and humidity on the 4th excursion day did us in. Let's talk about the boat, the staff and the amenities for a moment. This is my 3rd or 4th cruise with carnival now and until this point we never wanted to pay extra or feel the need to seek dining experiences outside of our designated dining time. But we were flexible this trip and ventured out. Guys pig and anchor was only open for about 2.5 hours during lunch, and if you didn't get there early you were forced to stand in line that sometimes went to the back of the boat [even though it is located in the middle of the boat]. To experience it once was well worth it. Guy also has his burger joint open for most of the afternoon and we made SURE we got one of those daily! It was delicious. Dinner one night was at Cucino del capitano, the Italian restaurant. For $15 a person, you received a hearty appetizer, a large entree and a delicious dessert. I know the main dining room is awesome but don't miss out on this experience, the food was wonderful. The only thing we did not try, was the steakhouse, because we could have gotten a $20 uptick steak at dinner in the regular dining room, vs paying $40 each in the steakhouse. Let's talk about the buffet....it was cold and nasty, every time we tried to eat there at breakfast-so we stuck to the sea day brunch and breakfast in the dining rooms. They were great. This was the first cruise on carnival where we avoided the buffet [except for the mongolean wok for lunch]. Big praise to our head waiter Sheldon and his partner Lehron on the Magic. They were OUTSTANDING. We had the 2nd largest suite on the ship, room 7372. The beds are SO small.. but the room itself was enormous. The closets are disjointed and in 2 different places. The balcony is oversized [really nice]. There was a deep jet tub to soak your bones if you wished, and the cabin steward was awesome. The bad and the ugly The casino was nothing more than a giant ashtray. The air quality in it was poor, and my $50 casino credit [promised to me 2 cruises ago but was never delivered] was once again not on file. This is the 2nd cruise in 2 years they have ignored my credit, but promised it would be on the next one. For this reason [and because im tired of looking like an idiot going to the cage and asking for it when they deny me] I didn't gamble at all. But you can smell the casino clear across the hall down to the end of the shops on level 5. It's really kind of gross. The comedy club was entertaining [not as funny as the 4 women in the front row were] but it was good enough for the evening. Bingo has gotten more expensive im afraid. There are *AUTO* gratuities on all your drink tickets now, that was something we had not experienced before. So look out for those. I found out that I can remove the auto gratuity at the end of the cruise [I didn't know I could before] because I tip daily, all of the staff I encounter that provide service, and one big tip to the waiters in the dining room on the last night. I have never seen the inside of the red frog pub until this cruise. I must have been CRAZY not to go in there. SO much fun during the day, all kinds of great drinks, snacks, games.. GREAT way to fill some time on your sea days. We played a lot of trivia this go around as well, just a good time to be had by ALL..THANK YOU CARNIVAL! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Our first cruise........... We went with friends who had cruised before and that was a big help! No children with us this time. Actually there weren't many on the ship at this time of year. Our only complaint was embarkation and ... Read More
Our first cruise........... We went with friends who had cruised before and that was a big help! No children with us this time. Actually there weren't many on the ship at this time of year. Our only complaint was embarkation and disembarkation (Galveston TX). Way too many people and way too much waiting all in one place! I think half the problem was people who were clueless. This process needs to be revamped! SERIOUSLY The ship was fun, our cabin (balcony) was great! The only way to cruise! If you are cruising I would imagine you love the ocean and want to sit out on the balcony and enjoy this part. I loved the fact that you had the same room attendant and dinner waiters. That made it an awesome experience. I looked forward to coming back to my cabin and finding it perfect. The ports were fun and enjoyable. Service at some of the restaurants on board had some real crabby workers. That was a bummer. We liked the photographers around the ship. They took some memorable photos. Entertainment was average. I would like too see carnival improve on this. One more complaint........ We aren't smokers so unfortunately we didn't do much in the casino. It smoke was horrible! Other than that is was fun and we are planning on going again! Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
It's been a few years since I've cruised with Carnival and I saw major decline in quality since then. (I'm a "gold" level) The entertainment wasn't as it was before, still nice to have, but not like before. ... Read More
It's been a few years since I've cruised with Carnival and I saw major decline in quality since then. (I'm a "gold" level) The entertainment wasn't as it was before, still nice to have, but not like before. Food was sub par, where I remembered it being fabulous. The meat I ordered seemed chewy/old and I stopped ordering it by the 4th night. Smoking indoors is unacceptable-which included many places on the ship. Areas were very crowded and getting on/off the ship was less than enjoyable. Free perks they used to have aren't available any more, i.e. chocolates on pillows, Welcome Back party, etc... If not for my great company, excellent drink servers, and dinning room wait staff, I would have been disappointed overall. Ports were fine-felt rushed as expected. Jamaica was dirty and super crowed, as usual, but we managed to find a little spot on the beach to tan. Grand Caymen was beautiful and we had a great time there at the Royal Palms resort. Cozamel was nice, but our original excursion was canceled due to weather, so we went to Chankanabb (not spelled correctly). It was beautiful and they had tons to do. If we go back, I wouldn't buy the excursion package. You'd be better off just paying for the main restaurant and regular bar drinks. We only had an option of one tiny, inconvenient bar and the buffet, which wasn't good. Also, everything shut down at 3 and we had to leave 2 hours early. :( Ship was always clean and most of the wait staff were amazing, but my biggest complaint is in regards to the way guest services (and the security guard at the time) handled a situation involving another guest vomiting all over me (and four other women) in the night club. Nothing was done to reprimand that guest, including "kicking him out," or flagging his account, etc. After having to clean off my face, my hair, and my dress in the bathroom, I saw that particular guest sitting at a slot machine in the casino-with a beer in hand-still drinking! When I brought this to the attention of the woman at guest services, she refused to do anything helpful and I had to suggest paying for my dress cleaning and drink that was wasted. Even when I asked for a security guard to be called down, since she could not leave her "post," she refused to call for one-only called to discuss what happened with the security guard in the club (whose only consolation to me was, "I've called someone to clean it"). She told me that she was making notes in my account, and I told her I'd speak to someone else the next day, but I was so through with the excuses and fake apologies I didn't go back. I didn't want to rehash that horrible situation and put myself through more anger. Needless to say, I have never had such a disgusting thing happen to me and would never expect it to happen on the second night of my vacation. That night was ruined (and followed by crying). Later I was afraid to go into areas where people were drinking, for fear of over-serving and people getting sick. I understand that people occasionally vomit, but projecting all over people is not okay. Bodily fluids can by hazardous! In the real world, the police would be called and that person would likely be cited for Public Intoxication. In the least, that person would be "cut off" and not allowed to continue publicly drinking! Maybe this is an indication of the type of people that now cruise with Carnival, so for those reasons, the lack of concern for my well-being, and many other reasons I will NOT travel with Carnival again. I rather spend more for a better experience and a better crowd. :/ Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
our children have been on other cruises and they prefer carnival, it was very nice and all the staff goes out of their way to be helpful funny and friendly. the ONLY issue I had was being in a wheelchair when boarding they should have ONE ... Read More
our children have been on other cruises and they prefer carnival, it was very nice and all the staff goes out of their way to be helpful funny and friendly. the ONLY issue I had was being in a wheelchair when boarding they should have ONE elevator specifically for the disabled as I waited 2 hours to get to my room. travelers would cut me off almost tipped over my wheelchair shoving to get on elevator. on our excursions the staff put me on private elevator was very nice not to have to fight a crowd. we are traveling in nov 2016 on the breeze I hope they take note of this review and do something for those of us who are in need of assistance other than that the cruise director dr e was superb kept us in stitches . hate to see him moved to Miami. we booked our next cruise before we left it was so enjoyable the excursions were fun we did private beach with all inclusive loved it no children only one other couple with us, swam with stingray got ripped off with pictures there but had fun and played with starfish too windy to parasail but will next time hopefully Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We planned for a family reunion on a cruise ship so no one would have to host Thanksgiving at their house; no cooking, no cleaning, no entertaining, and plenty of distractions. Fifteen of us in 7 cabins. We love each other...in small ... Read More
We planned for a family reunion on a cruise ship so no one would have to host Thanksgiving at their house; no cooking, no cleaning, no entertaining, and plenty of distractions. Fifteen of us in 7 cabins. We love each other...in small doses. ;-) I chose Carnival over RCC because of the price per cabin advantage I received. I chose the Magic for the waterworks, rope course, and size. I chose the Magic over the Breeze for the itinerary. I chose an Ocean Suite for the balcony and the whirlpool tub in the bathroom. We flew into Houston the night prior to the cruise and stayed overnight in Galveston. We barely beat the massive ice/snow storm as flights after ours were getting cancelled. We arranged transportation through the hotel shuttle. A short stop by the local Walmart allowed us to get last-minute items we didn't want to pack--sodas, straw hat, Lysol wipes/spray, pool toys, etc. The weather channel in the hotel showed a huge storm in the gulf between us and our first port, Mahogany Bay. The rain and wind prevented us from walking along the shoreline across from the hotel. Check-in could not have gone smoother. The hotel shuttle took our family to the port at 1100. My family went through the "express" lane; my mother had arrived at the port 15 minutes before us and I was sure that I would be able to get onboard and wait for her. We had no lines and went straight through security and right up to the Sign and Sail desk; as I got my S&S cards, I got a text that my mom was already onboard! Gold Star for Check In. We went straight up to our deck, but the corridors were not open yet--they were still cleaning the cabins. We went down to the atrium to gather/plan lunch. It couldn't have been more than 15 minutes before our cabins were ready. We dropped off our luggage and made a beeline to the Cuchina del Capitano--lunch is free, dinner is $12/person. We wanted to get there on the first or second day (before the rest of the ship realized that lunches were free). Lunch was good. Remember that storm I saw on the weather channel? We found it. There is a reason why they have hand rails in the corridors. It felt like airplane turbulence that would not stop. Our family were OK, but it got to my sister and my nephew. Sleeping through it was no problem...it probably helped. The 2nd day wasn't any better. My son leaned over the balcony rail (we were on the 7th deck mid-ship)) and pulled his head back soaking wet from the ocean spray as the ship bumped through the 8-ft swells. Cruising through storms=no bueno. We arrived in Mahogany Bay, Isla Roatan (Honduras) at around 7:00 am. We purchased the Ultimate beach Package (8-11 am). I watched from the balcony as the rain came in waves and the lightning flashed in the sky. I took my tickets to the excursion desk, but they had already cancelled all water activities and refunded patrons. We bought plastic ponchos and walked through the shops. Harley T-Shirt ftw! We tried the Steakhouse and paid the $35/person surcharge. I cannot begin to describe who good that meal was. My normal haunts are places like The Olive Garden, Applebees, Golden Coral, etc. I went in expecting those, I sorely underestimated the cuisine. Definitely on the to-do list next time. Our MDR waiters (Sinat, Fritz, and Biliana) in the Southern Lights dining room were a riot. We came to have fun, they did not disappoint. Again, I expected Golden Coral and got more than we thought we would. By the time we go to Belize, we finally saw the sun poke through partly cloudy skies. We went on an ATV tour (got muddy), cave tubing (cleaned up), and zip lining (dried off). Butts Up excursions took good care of us even though our tender was running late (we did not book through Carnival and therefore had to take the later tenders). We not not have time to do any shopping at the port, but I didn't mind. Our last port of call was Cozumel, Mexico. This time, we did book through Carnival to go on the Mayan ruins of Tulum. We took a high-speed ferry to mainland Mexico in very rough seas. I knew it would be an adventure as they started handing out motion sickness bags before everyone was seated. For several people, the bags were well utilized. We went to Playa del Carmen to catch a bus to Tulum. I don't know if it was the bright sunshine, the roller coaster ferry ride, or the European flair of the buildings, but folks, if your itinerary includes Cozumel, you have to go to the mainland! As we drove through town, I saw at least a dozen activities I would like to try on our next visit. Tulum was OK. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. Cruising back to Galveston was smooth, comparatively speaking. We enjoyed the rope course, miniature golf, waterworks, and spa activities. The illusion show was muy bueno. We went to the family comedy show [thumbs up]. The slot machines were extremely tight, but the blackjack tables allowed me to break even. Debarkation was nearly as quick as embarkation. My son had a 11:20 flight from Bush Intercontinental Airport to be the best man at a wedding. We have VIP privileges (because of the cabin class rather than anything I have done). We left our cabin at 7:30. We were off the ship by 7:50 and waiting for the shuttle by 8:05. Ironically, we waited longer for the shuttle than the time it took to get from our cabin to the shuttle stop. Overview: I am not sure we will cruise out of Galveston again. The cost and inconvenience of getting there can be reduced if going to a different port. I am probably not going to cruise across the Gulf of Mexico in the winter again. I would like to try it again in the summer (maybe from Miami?). Carnival gets a thumbs up for cleanliness, friendly crew, and cost/experience ratio. I did not take into account how the size of the ship (and negotiating the flights of stairs) would affect my arthritic knees. I spent more time in the whirlpool tub than on the balcony, but I blame the weather equally. The swimming pools were small (both of them). The jacuzzis were always crowded. We always found empty chairs on the Serenity deck. The only time we couldn't find an open chair on the Lido deck was during one of the contests. Again, the weather played a factor for most of the cruise. While in Cozumel, we docked next to the Carnival Sunshine. That will probably be our next ship. ;-)) Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
Hello my name is Carla my husband Ken and I live in Oklahoma. The cruise we just stepped off of was Carnival's 7 day . We flew into Galveston on Saturday and was picked up by friends. We chose to stay Saturday night at the LaQunita ... Read More
Hello my name is Carla my husband Ken and I live in Oklahoma. The cruise we just stepped off of was Carnival's 7 day . We flew into Galveston on Saturday and was picked up by friends. We chose to stay Saturday night at the LaQunita Inn on South Seawall. Alot of people made this same choose, if you stay one night before or after a cruise you can park your car there for free. They will drop you off and pick you back up after the cruise. ( besure to get the drivers name, when he drops you off). We always cruise Carnival and this time we had a few problems, but nothin that will keep us away. We have a Carnival charge card and choose to cash in our points for drink coupons there was a bit of confusion where and when we were to get the coupons. FYI::: regarding the purchase of drink coupons. IF YOU GAMBLE IN THE CASINO AFTER A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF MONEY IS SPENT DRINKS ARE FREE. This would have been nice to no in advance as we wouldnt have purchased so many drink coupons. None the less after visiting the front desk we were told to bring our remaining coupons back and they would let us use them. SHORE EXCURSIONS::::Our first port was keywest, we choose the PUB CRAWL as our shore excursion. It was a 9... Great shore excursion a great way to get free drinks, tshirt and learn all about the island. Our second port was Freeport, my mistake was as a group we desided not to do any excursions and that wasnt such a good idea. People say oh just go off on your own.. My question is WHERE??? hello I am not from here and dont no what to see and do. Spend a few dollars and atleast learn about the island. After all you are visiting and dont have long. Our 3rd stop was Nassau, I did a little research and found a great excursion an all inclusive. All eats and alcohol were included. Very fun day!! big hit with our group... One other thing I would like to mention, hubby and I did the couples massage. It was expensive but a great massage. However the spa is just below the basketball court. LMAO not very relaxing when you are listing to 60 minutes of bouncing balls. LOL. Food:::: Food was best in the dining room buffets were maybe a 4 on a scale of 1 to 10. Mexican buffet food was very cold. But as always hamburgers and fries were great. And for those ice cream lovers. you can't go wrong... They keep you in ice cream and always coming back for more. Entertainment: Casino is 10 hello we are gamblers. The illusionist and adult comedy shows were also great. We dont care much for the broadway type shows as alot of people would say.... It's hard to please everyone regarding MUSIC TYPE... CABIN CHOICE: We always like empress deck for several reasons. It's where the suites are so the best cabin stewards are assigned to this deck. So even if you have no suite you get star treatment. We always pick cabins on the back of the ship just before the wrap around balconies. CHECK CABIN 7455.. This type cabin can be found on deck 6 also because its the last cabin on the side they have balconies MUCH LARGER than others. Balcony size is 75 feet compaired to the normal 35 feet. Room is shaped a bit different but larger balcony for us IS A BIG PLUS. You can also find a youtube video I posted about this particular cabin. 7455 on Carnival's Magic.. One of the things we miss MOST: is guest involvement with games and activities. There seems to be less and less of that on each and every cruise we take. We enjoy Carnival and already have another cruise booked. Hope our review helps someone if you have any questions we will be happy to answer any questions just send me a message........... HAPPY SAILING......... THERE IS NOTHING BETTER.............SEE U AT SEA!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
When deciding how to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary it was not very hard to agree on a romantic cruise aboard the Carnival Magic. Our seven day cruise took us into three of the most beautiful Caribbean port of calls, Isla of ... Read More
When deciding how to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary it was not very hard to agree on a romantic cruise aboard the Carnival Magic. Our seven day cruise took us into three of the most beautiful Caribbean port of calls, Isla of Roatan, Belize and Cozumel but it was the Carnival Magic that was the crown jewel on this romantic vacation. From the first step aboard this ship we felt the magic, pardon the pun, entering into the sparkling atrium it was apparent the Carnival designers outdid themselves when they built the Magic. The color scheme flowed throughout the ship with incredible lights and paintings, the Magic Hat Casino glistened like polished black marble. The food selection was great from deli sandwiches to prime rib, the pizza and hamburgers were only beat by the Oceanside BBQ where they featured mini hamburgers called 'sliders' chicken tacos and quesadillas. The entertainment venue covered a broad spectrum from the hairy chest contest at poolside to Las Vegas caliber shows in the Showtime Theatre. The alcohol flowed freely among many of our fellow passengers but we witnessed zero altercations yet a lot of laughter and fun even if we were spectators. Did we enjoy our Carnival cruise aboard the Magic? Well we have already booked our next Carnival cruise in April 2013. If you want to escape the world we highly recommend you choose Carnival as they whisk you away into tropical paradise aboard the Magic. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
During the third week of August, 2012, 18 memebers of our family cruised on the Carnival Magic From Galveston, Texas we visited Isla Roatan, Cozumel,and Belize. It was our 6th cruises with Carnival. The Magic is our favorite cruise thus ... Read More
During the third week of August, 2012, 18 memebers of our family cruised on the Carnival Magic From Galveston, Texas we visited Isla Roatan, Cozumel,and Belize. It was our 6th cruises with Carnival. The Magic is our favorite cruise thus far. The Carnival Magic has a huge number of improvements over the other Carnival ships we've sailed on. Even though I had done quite a bit of pre-cruise research about the Carnival Magic, I was really surprised once I got onboard and started noticing the combined overall effect of each of the little things Carnival had improved upon... it was clearly a superior ship over the others I had been on. I had read several reviews that were less than complementary after already booking this cruise and was a little worried since we had so many family memeber going along, some of which were first time cruisers. I think all came away feeling this was one of our best family vacations and all are "hooked" on cruising. Here are some of the things we liked most 1. Better, "tamer" decor and color scheme The decor inside the cabins is more neutral and less loud than on other Carnival ships I've been on. Kids really liked the lights in the main atrium with the glass elevators that turned colors. Not bright obnoxious colors but cool blues and purples. 2. Safe uses a combo Loved that we could open with numbers after setting it up ourselves rather than using license or credit card 3. SeaSide BBQ They serve sliders (small hamburgers), hot dogs, and grilled tacos on sea days They also sell some soft drinks (Coke, for example) by the can. It's a nice alternative to the other lunch options on the ship. The kids especially liked this option for lunch 4. Serenity Retreat It is larger than on other ships, and with more seating. The double hamocks and round chairs were heaven. Adults could be away from the little ones and relax here for awhile. 5. Ease of navigating ship Of the 6 Carnival ships I have been on, this is the only one I never got lost on. I have always had trouble getting front to back to get to a show or back to my room etc. This time everything was laid out in a great flow pattern and I never had to back track to find my way. 6.The mid-ship pool Tiki-style huts offer shade for parents who want to keep an eye on their kids swimming in the main pool. There are wooden benches surrounding the pool, for people who want to sit adjacent to the pool without getting fully in to it. The pool is surrounded by an area with about 2 inches of water so you can sit and keep your toes cool. The pool is salt water and there are showers of fresh water to rinse off with. A little cool at times, The kids loved it. 7. Outdoor deck goes all the way around deck 5 It is great to be able to walk all the way around the ship on deck 5. You do have to go inside to go to the other side, but much better than most ships. 8. Fun hubs Instead of having an Internet cafe tucked away in some dark corner of the ship like most cruise ships do, they are in public-access computers all around the ship. Sometimes it's one computer by itself, other times it's two to four of them They were easy to get to. Nice Macs with big wide screens. They also had a special price for unlimited internet for the entire cruise. I didnt use it but my daughter did. I think it was $129 for entire cruise. She had her own computer, dont know if that made a difference. 9. Dining rooms do not block off the ship There's a hallway that takes you past the main dining room in the middle of the ship, unlike other ships where you have to go up and over (or down and under) to get past the dining room. We liked going to see the pictures taken previous day before/after dining 10. Quality of beds I dont think I have slept as well on any other cruise. Even the 6 mo old slept through the night. No one had a complaint (from out group) about the linens or the mattresses. Wish I could be back on my cruise. 11. Seaside Theatre Great picture quality on the big TV out by the pool. First time we have been on a ship that I have watched the big screen TV. The ones I had seen just didnt seem worth watching. Had decent movies on too. 12. Sky Court Most cruise ships have a basketball court up on the top deck, but the one on the Carnival Magic is the best I've seen. My grown kids and their kids spent quite a bit of time up there. They all loved the mini golf which went on two decks. They used the basket ball and weight equipment as well. Much nicer to have exercise equipment outdoors than to be stuck in a gym. My husband and I utilized the seating around it to watch everyone have fun. It was also great to play miniature golf without having to check out clubs and balls. On the Carnival Magic, they're out for anyone to use at any time. There's also an outdoor pool table, foosball table, and an outdoor video game system hooked up to a big screen. There's also a ropes course. There is also a ropes course which none of us got time to try. To many things to do and see in one trip. Guess we have to go again and try the ropes course!! 13. Food options We save for awhile to be able to go on a cruise so dont use the cost option dining. Loved all the new free food options such as the SeaSide BBQ, the Taste Bar, and the Hot Dog Stand, Mongolian BBQ, Pizza, buffet, Italian resturant (only free for lunch) and probably more I have forgotten. Loved all the options as there was always something for everyone. 14. Safety briefing in the main theatre, with seating Our safety briefing was held in the comfort of the main show lounge. We have always had to stand around and be packed like sardines on one of the decks by the lifeboats before. I LOVED this!! 15.Waterworks The WaterWorks area is great. This area on the Carnival Magic is somewhat wind-protected. The Spa and the Serenity Retreat sit in front of the WaterWorks area and this tends to block some of the wind when you are at sea. The little ones loved the small slides and older ones had a great time on the big slides. Something for eveyone. Fun Ship is RIGHT The long waterslide was a nice long ride, and you got some speed going. The other WaterSlide, which ends in a bowl where you circle the rim, is a bit short although still fun, esp for the kids. 16. Gym I think they had more options for the fitness minded in this gym. My daughter did a boot camp that she said "kicked her behind". She said it was worth the cost to get moving every morning before the rest of us bothered to get up. Negatives One thing I missed from the Spirit and Conquest classes of ships was a sliding dome that could cover one of the pools during bad weather. We actually on our sea days, and it would have been nice if one of the pools had a dome that could have been closed. The other thing I had a problem with is no swimming pool on the Serinity Deck. That would have been heaven!! I do have to say that I am not a fan of Carnival's way of hiring their entire cooking staff. If I want a Burrito at the Burrito Bar I think it would probably be better if it was run by Mexicans, and the food at the Mongolian BBQ would be better if the people there knew how the food really should be cooked. We like both types of food and they just were NOT what they should be. I know Im not going to change the way kitchen staff are hired, but think overall the food could be prepared better if the cooks "knew" the food and how it should be. I found the majority of the staff to be helpful and pleasant even when guest were less than pleasant. I did find the Filipino folks to be the happiest and more willing to help. Some of the others seemed to be angry most of the time. Oh well, maybe they were just having a bad day when I came across them. Our cabin Stewardess was efficient, but not as outgoing as all our previous ones. Our main waiter in the dining room each night was wonderful as usuall. He learned all the kids names and remembered what they liked best. Always did something special for them each night. Earned him a good extra tip. Our bartender in the main dining room had our drinks waiting for us each and every night (after the first one of course) which we truly appreciated and for which he was compensated for at the end with extra tip. To sum it up... I can hardly wait til I can afford to go on the Magic again. Hope it is soon. Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
This was my second Carnival cruise and I must say I was not disappointed. In general the newest ship is very nice. Embarkation/Debarkation processes were extremely quick compare to Long Beach. If you were a VIP check in, you probably ... Read More
This was my second Carnival cruise and I must say I was not disappointed. In general the newest ship is very nice. Embarkation/Debarkation processes were extremely quick compare to Long Beach. If you were a VIP check in, you probably waited a bit longer than the normal cruiser. Our Stateroom was on Deck 10 Fwd and it quite large for a corner stateroom. The only disadvantage was when we had rough seas, you felt it and its also next to the room stewart closet where they fill their buckets up. Our Room stewart Hadu was the best. Food was above average which was good, but on my last night I actually sent my mahi mahi back and asked for something else for which out waiter accomodated my request. We had anytime dining which is growing in popularity and this work out very well. We were treated to the singing waiter from the Philipines who I believe needs to team up with Ken the maitre D and do a duet on stage. Otherwise the dining experience was good with no real complaints. Red Frog pub is must as the Amber Ale is grrrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeeeattt! Entertainment wise, I was a bit disappointed in the quality of the shows as they were not Carnival's best in my mind. The Punchliner comedy club was as always very funny. The main atrium where the lobby, photo gallery and fun shops are on decks 3,4 and 5 are typical and cramped with passengers which made getting around it challenging at times. I was also disappointed by the lack of an adult pool on board, but spent much time on the serenity deck in the hot tubs. The sports court, sky course, and water slides were alot of fun especially for this 52 yr old. There is always opinions on if people should take Carnival tours or do something on their own. I booked a carnival tour and we were late getting back to the ship so they waited for us. This would not have been the case had I booked tours on my own. The itinerary was good Montego Bay, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel. Just wish Grand Cayman would build a pier. Would also prefer to dock in Ocho Rios as well. When i compare the magic to the splendor the magic wins in my my mind. Generally had a great time and a great cruise. yeah a few things could be better, but I know that Carnival will make them right. Read Less
Sail Date March 2012
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 3.9
Family 4.5 3.9
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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