CYBER MONDAY DEALS! Get discounts on top-rated cruises. View Deals
  • Newsletter
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

Carnival Panorama Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
123 reviews

Great Cruise but some room issues

Review for Carnival Panorama to the Mexican Riviera
User Avatar
Chewbecky
2-5 Cruises • Age 30s

Rating by category

Cabin
Family
Value for Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Fitness & Recreation
Service

Additional details

Sail Date: Aug 2022
Cabin: Interior with Picture Window (walkway view, obstructed view)

This was my first time on the Mexican Riviera Itinerary and sailing out of Long Beach. The embarkation process was overall very smooth, there were lines for each boarding time, and it progressed smoothly. Once onboard, the ship was great. The atrium is really pretty with the holographic center, but it was kind of underwhelming too compared to the older ships with the extravagant atriums. The elevators took some getting used to on the first day and people kept forgetting to select it multiple times if there was more than one person so sometimes it would be overcrowded. After the first day, the elevators were easy to navigate. I snagged a deal on room 6201 which is an Interior w/Picture Window w/obstructed views at the very bow of the ship and looks out onto the "secret deck." I was initially concerned about noise from the Liquid Lounge on Deck 5 but honestly never heard any noise from it. The room was almost as large as a regular room but didn't have a couch, only 1 closet, and the window didn't open. The view wasn't even really obstructed but looks out on the bow and gives you a great 180-degree view of the front of the ship. The deck though would sometimes be closed off due to high winds and the doors to open it were heavy so not easy to get out there. The fridge in the room didn't actually cool anything and the steward said it is actually a cooler and not a fridge so the temp would never be significantly lower, so definitely don't store food in there. The steward did start bringing me an ice bucket each day after I mentioned it which was a nice touch. The carpet in the room was strange though because it made a plastic crunchy noise when I stepped in the certain areas. there was also an issue with the room lock where it would flash green with my card, but the locking mechanism wouldn't turn, and I couldn't get in. They had an electrician come in and replaced the batteries which helped but the locked still stuck quite a bit. The room itself was perfect for one person and I enjoyed it overall. The TV was especially nice since the last cruise I was on, they only had a rotating schedule of movies, so you often missed parts of it. This TV had movies on demand, and you could select free movies and start them anytime you wanted, or you could pay more for a premium movie too. The layout of the ship was easy to navigate and flowed quite well. The overall decor was more of a nice hotel vibe instead of extravagant like my first cruise on the Conquest. The main dining rooms were more neutral in color palettes, and I wasn't especially impressed. The menus in the MDR weren't great either and I found myself checking the menu on the Hub App early so I could decide if there was anything I wanted to eat in the MDR or if I should go eating at one of the Specialty Dining Restaurants. I loved the Jiji Asian Kitchen and the Steakhouse dinners I had. Guy's Pub and Cucina weren't especially interesting in the food overall. The shows on the ship were incredible. They had the shows for Rock Revolution, Soulbound, and Celestial Strings. Soulbound was my favorite cause there was a narrative behind it and it was really well done. The Celestial Strings show featured Sky Breeze, the onboard violin trio, that played in the atriums, and they were phenomenal! The traditional Carnival Deck Parties were great as well. I was especially happy with the Silent Night party where you were a headset and can choose the DJ/Station you wanted to dance too. I'm normally a pretty shy person but it was fun cause it is awkward all around if you take the headphones off and see people dancing wildly to various music. I was rather disappointed in the selection of available excursions in these ports and there weren't a lot of options and sometimes the excursions would go to the same place but be named differently. The excursions I took were great overall and I did the Exclusive Majahuitas Beach Cove experience in Puerto Vallarta (amazing lunch!), the City Tour of Mazatlan, and the Arch Cruise/Beach/Tacos/Shopping tour in Cabo. The only disappointment in the ports was that the shops all carried the same items, nothing really special or unique. I managed to snag some tile paintings from a street artist but most of the shops were carbon copies of each other and the store owners were very pushy in trying to get tourists to come into their shop. I learned though that the other cruise lines send their West Coast ships to Seattle for Alaskan itineraries in the summer, so Carnival is the only one sending ships to Mexico in the summer, so the shops are bit desperate for the business. I had mostly a spa/relaxing focus on the cruise and got a facial and massage down as well as snagged the 7-day thermal suite pass. The spa staff push the extras like products to take home so be prepared for it and ask how much it is and don't be afraid to say no! the thermal suite was great, and it really helped with sore muscles and detoxing. It was a great trip overall and the weather was wonderful, the water was smooth, and the sun was shining. We even saw two pods of dolphins on our way back. I would recommend this cruise to anyone especially if you are on the West Coast.

Cabin Review

Interior with Picture Window (walkway view, obstructed view)

I snagged a deal on room 6201 which is an Interior w/Picture Window w/obstructed views at the very bow of the ship and looks out onto the "secret deck." I was initially concerned about noise from the Liquid Lounge on Deck 5 but honestly never heard any noise from it. The room was almost as large as a regular room but didn't have a couch, only 1 closet, and the window didn't open. The view wasn't even really obstructed but looks out on the bow and gives you a great 180-degree view of the front of the ship. The deck though would sometimes be closed off due to high winds and the doors to open it were heavy so not easy to get out there. The fridge in the room didn't actually cool anything and the steward said it is actually a cooler and not a fridge so the temp would never be significantly lower, so definitely don't store food in there. The steward did start bringing me an ice bucket each day after I mentioned it which was a nice touch. The carpet in the room was strange though because it made a plastic crunchy noise when I stepped in the certain areas. there was also an issue with the room lock where it would flash green with my card, but the locking mechanism wouldn't turn, and I couldn't get in. They had an electrician come in and replaced the batteries which helped but the locked still stuck quite a bit. The room itself was perfect for one person and I enjoyed it overall. The TV was especially nice since the last cruise I was on, they only had a rotating schedule of movies, so you often missed parts of it. This TV had movies on demand, and you could select free movies and start them anytime you wanted, or you could pay more for a premium movie too.

Port Reviews

Cabo San Lucas

I did the Arch Cruise/Beach/Tacos/Shopping Excursion in Cabo. As soon as we got off the tender, we were sent onto another boat to go see the Arch which is right at the tip of the bay. They took us pretty close to it and we got to see Lover's beach and then on the other side Divorce Beach (LOL). The water was pretty choppy and a lady did get seasick so keep that in mind. They brought us back to the Marina where we lined up to take coach buses to the beach resort Case Dorado where we were going to enjoy the beach there. there were restrooms and massage parlors available ($40 for 50 minutes) and we also got our lunch tacos there as well. The water was pretty strong, and some jellyfish were spotted but it was lovely. Only downside was the street vendors who patrolled up and down the beach selling their wares. They typically stayed beyond the rope where it is public beach vs the private section for the resort, but they would line up along the ropes blocking the view and constantly trying to get people's attention. After that we boarded the bus again to go to the shopping district where they dropped us off in front of a shop that let us use their restrooms to change and told us to be back in an hour. The shops were largely the same and the owners were pushy in trying to get people to come inside. We were brought straight back to the marina to board the tender to the ship. I did hear from others who did more water-based excursions that many people got very seasick because the waters were so choppy so make sure to take meds if you are prone to sea sickness.

Mazatlan

I did the City Tour of Mazatlan in this port. They ushered us onto a coach bus right away and took us around the city. We went to see the cliff diver show, the cathedral, the shrimp ladies, coast lines, and a harbor tour of the bay. The tour guide Letty was great and had lots of great info for us and it was overall a great tour experience, especially if you haven't been to Mazatlan before.

Puerto Vallarta

I chose the Exclusive Majahuitas Beach Cove experience for this port because I didn't really see any other great beach excursions in the other port and I wanted some dedicated beach time. The weather was iffy in the morning but cleared up later in the day and never got too bad. They took us on a tender to the beach location and the crew was great. Chai was the team leader and introduced the whole gang including Omar, Andre, Mikey, and others. They had a ramp available to get us from the boat to the beach without getting wet which is something I appreciated since I saw other boats having their passengers swim to shore. The beach resort is great and the seating is plentiful. they had us make reservations based on party size and had seats/tables reserved for us. The water was pretty choppy due to the weather and boats coming in. The sand was rocky and we sunk a lot in it so it was difficult to move. They had water activities like kayaking, paddle boarding, banana boats, etc ready for the the guests. They brought out our lunch and it was amazing! so much food and it was all delicious. The drinks were great too and the service was amazing. Coming back from the resort the boat crew put on a hilarious and amazing show where they dressed up and lip synced to songs. It was hilarious watching what I thought were very serious people break out in song and dance and put on an amazing show! It was really the highlight of the trip.

Los Angeles

After I disembarked I did a City tour of LA through Sunseeker Tours because they offered an 8hr tour of LA and picked up at the cruise terminal and dropped off at the airport. They were super professional and lovely and picked me up at the terminal with my luggage. We traveled across LA (around 130 miles overall) and visited Griffith Park, Walk of Fame, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Venice Beach, Marina Del Rey, and ate lunch at Mel's Diner. It was a great choice to spend my last vacation day since I had a red eye flight and about 14hrs to spare.

4 Helpful Votes
previous reviewnext review

Find a Carnival Panorama Cruise from $349

Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy and Cookies Statement and Terms of Use.
About UsCruise DestinationsFirst Time CruisersFind A Cruise

Share your feedback

International Sites

© 1995—2022, The Independent Traveler, Inc.

  • Privacy and Cookies Statement

  • Terms of Use

  • Site Map

  • Cookie Consent