November 19, 2019
(4 p.m. EST) -- When Mardi Gras, Carnival's next new ship, launches in summer 2020, it will feature the motorcycle-inspired BOLT roller coaster-style ride, three water slides in the WaterWorks Aqua Park and the line's longest ropes course. All will be located within the two-deck Ultimate Playground.
The centerpiece of the Ultimate Playground is BOLT, a motorcycle-inspired roller coaster-style attraction that features two-person "vehicles" that follow an 800-foot-long tack suspended 187 feet above the sea -- dips and hairpin turns included.
The all-electric metallic red- and blue-striped vehicles can achieve speeds of up to 40 miles per hour; a digital speedometer lets riders know how fast they're going. Cruisers can choose their own speed, so they can always throttle back if the speedometer scares them.
Cameras will be located along the track, as well as within the vehicle itself, giving riders the opportunity to purchase photo keepsakes.
"Whether guests want to get an adrenaline rush or take it slow and enjoy the breathtaking views, BOLT will have it all," said Christine Duffy, Carnival Cruise Line president at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Conference in Orlando.
BOLT will not be the only exciting feature found in the Ultimate Playground, one of Mardi Gras' six themed zones. Spanning Decks 18 to 20, the Ultimate Playground will also have the largest WaterWorks aqua park and ropes course in the fleet.
WaterWorks will have three slides: Blue Lightning with 312 feet of high-speed twists and turns; 229-foot-long Orange Thunder, a drop-down slide that propels riders into a splash zone; and the line's signature Twister slide, featuring 265 feet of twisty turns. WaterWorks will also have a 150-gallon PowerDrencher tipping bucket and numerous water toys and water elements for kids of all ages.
Cruisers will find the 600-foot-long ropes course in the expanded SportSquare recreation center, complete with a short zip line.
Also in SportSquare will be a nine-hole mini-golf course, a jogging track, a basketball court and outdoor fitness equipment.
Currently under construction at the Meyer Turku shipyard in Turku, Finland, Mardi Gras is scheduled to enter service August 31, 2020, in Europe before repositioning to New York for a series of sailings. After that, it will head to Port Canaveral for year-round weeklong Caribbean cruises beginning October 2020.
The vessel will feature several new-to-Carnival dining venues, including the first at-sea restaurant for Emeril Lagasse, an open-air food truck-inspired venue called Street Eats and the second at-sea appearance of Shaquille O'Neal's Big Chicken Restaurant. It will also offer the first-ever Excel suites, which come with exclusive access to a suites-only pool and sun deck.