For us, this is our 8th cruise, third w/ Carnival. We booked a balcony on the spa deck for $980/person back in January that included spa access (lounge/hot tub/ oriental steam/ eucalyptus steam/ heated lounge chairs) for an extra $145- well worth it to us as we used it every morning.
Ship- The Magic, for being only 8 years old looks in pretty rough shape. Lots of rust on the exterior, especially at the water line and throughout there were signs of wear. Lots of missing tiles in the spas 12th floor hot tub, large rust spot on our interior window and they definitely went ALL IN on the color green for the interior...wow!! Probably the ugliest ship we've ever sailed on. Windows in the dining room and throughout the ship were dirty and in need of cleaning. Never seen this issue on any other cruise we've been on.
Departure- No issues getting on board, got processed quickly and baggage was delivered by 2pm.
Dining Staff- We had 6pm in Northern Lights dining, did the buffet on Thanksgiving as we didnt want to dress up for second formal night and went to the steakhouse once. Its the service that really makes a difference, though, isn't it? That makes a cruise feel special if we are treated special at chow time. Our staff was ok, not the best, not energetic or happy but also did do their job competently and that is just the roll of the dice...whether you get a fantastic group or terrible ones or somewhere in between.
Room Staff- Room was cleaned and kept up and had little interaction w/ our steward, which is fine.
Food- I thought the food was some of the best we have ever had. I do feel that generally, Carnival Cruises have the best food. My only knock were the fruits- cantaloupe, grapefruit, strawberries, pineapple, oranges, apples all of it was poor. The menus were very strong w/ lots of options and my daughter fell in love w/ the Indian vegetarian dishes.
Entertainment- I felt the after dinner, main stage group was a bit below average with only the one Rock & Roll show being competent. The lounge acts were fantastic, we especially loved the 3 violinists and bought their CD.
Casino- We usually spend a good amount of time gambling but due to the smoking allowed in the casino, we rarely went. Maybe 30% of our normal amount.
Ports- Loved the itinerary but was VERY disappointed that our power snorkel in Grand Turk did not go the wall, which is the only reason we booked it. Still fighting w/ Carnival over that one.
Disembarkation- Does anyone ever have a smooth one? We're all unhappy to leave, we're getting up waaay too early, and no one knows what is going on.
Signed up to go to the 'Wall', the 7000 ft drop off. Guides didnt take us there, went to some run of the mill reef. Very disappointed.View All 208 Snorkeling Reviews