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Carnival Cruise Lines: Carnival Magic

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
  • New

Jun 15, 2016

western caribbean

I am a platinum member with Carnival. My husband, myself and our granddaughter had a fabulous time on the Magic. We had the best cabin steward!! He was there for our every needs...Always greeting us in the hallway with a big smile. The cruise director was the BEST!!! He made us laugh everyday, either when he was making an announcement or during the shows. Our balcony room was just as expected,.. we had plenty of room for 3. Service in restaurant

was excellent. Food was the same as all cruises. We always try to do breakfast in dining room to avoid the lines on the lido deck. But we were very surprised, for a ship that was sold out, there were never any lines. We loved this ship and are going back in September with the family! Happy sailing everyone

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Apr 18, 2016

Western Caribbean

My friends (8) and I planned this cruise for one year. This was my 3rd cruise on the Magic, but nothing could have prepared me for the disaster we encountered. I will NEVER cruise with Carnival again. Service was NIL. Asking for toilet paper was like you were asking for a roll of gold. No more drinks left in the room. Have o call room service for a bucket of ice...sometimes 3 times..3 beds in our room and were given 2 wash cloths and 2 towels. For

our dinner seating we sat at different tables each night. We were told just came out of dry dock for multimillion make over..ship was in dire need to repairs still. Cracked light fixtures and some walls cracking. I am sure this review will not posted but truly a trip from H E DOUBLE HOCKEY STICKS. from now on ROYAL CARIBBEAN OR PRINCESS...

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Mar 14, 2016

Carribbean

This was my 2nd cruise and husbands 4th on the magic and this was the most horrible cruise either of us have been on. the ship had just come out of dry dock and it was obviously not ready to be out yet there were wires hanging down, brown glass on windows and doors, the projectors and stuff wouldn't work for shows, and the hot tub 1 if not 2 were shut down everyday due to maintence or broken items in it. We were very dissatisfied with all this and

have made contact with Carnival on the ship and after we returned home with no help from them at all. The breakfast food was good as long as you didn't get orange juice from room service which was warm and nasty, and a lady sitting next to us had fixed her a bowl of raisin bran and took a big bite only to discover the milk was soured and when she looked at date it was out for 2 weeks. lunch and dinner in the buffet was not as it use to be the meats were either severaly over cooked and dry or undercooked and raw with blood. My husband got a tune sandwhich only to find the tune was spoiled. Dinner in the dining room (we had late dinning) it started at 8:15 and was after 10:30 before we got out due to service being slow, lack of items on the table (butter etc) and the waiter looking confused. The food itself in there was excellent except for one night my husbands steak had about half of it being tough that wouldn't cut with knife. This part of our trip was great and we are very glad it was as we spent a lot of time in our cabin due to the situations being so bad. Our room steward was really sweet and helpful and made sure we had everything we needed. There was hardly any activites in the day time other than trivia, the shows at night were the same exact thing we had seen on our previous trips and many of the selling seminars couldn't be seen due to the lack of the projectors working. We didn't plan any excursions we planned on shopping. Our ports were wonderful and we enjoyed our days there very much Very disappointing due to all the issues we were really ready to get off boat this time. 3 of our 7 days the serenity deck, water park, rope course, and putt putt were closed so kids used what hot tubs were open as pools, and rode the elevators up and down making us wait to change floors.

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By Rick_CR

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Sep 23, 2015

Bahamas

Overall expectations were met or exceeded. Cruise was provided as advertised. No problems were encountered. I do recommend the cruise for others. Food was great. High quality, good selection, and food servers were great. Great cabin, enjoyed having the window and more room than a normal inside room. Evening stage shows were great. One lame show was the first night cruise director. Excursions were great. We were rained

out in Freeport, but received a prompt refund from Carnival. It was a very enjoyable, relaxing experience.

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Feb 22, 2015

Western Carribean

Easier boarding and exiting the ship than I have found in the past. Overall I think the cruise experience has been cheapened. Decreased quality and options on the menu. Extra charge now for lobster or better quality meat items. We had poor service and food in the dining room and only ate there 3 times. Our table for 8 was empty most nights. Other nearby tables were empty after the first night. Nice stateroom, great staff, willing

to go the extra effort. Our room -6323-was above an exterior door on deck 5. The door slammed continually until late at night. Hard to sleep in in the AM and hard to get to sleep early in the evening OK shows and entertainment, but the drinks were smaller and expensive. The usual cruise ship owned or approved "Mini Mall" at the end of the pier. Costa Maya and Progreso were a disappointment. Nowhere to walk to but the junk stores. I think we will go back to Celebrity or Norwegian for future cruises.

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Jul 27, 2013

western Carribean

We had a family vacation, 4 grandparents, 4 grandkids, with their mom and dad. The kids loved it the water slides the pool the activity. the 2 grandfarhers loved the red frog pub. but best of all was the evening dining experience. We had a table of 10 at the rear of the boat with wall to wall windows overlooking the sun setting in the gulf of mexico every evening. Words don't do it justice. We all enjoyed the food. the kids loved to try something

different and exotic ,like frog legs. I loved the grill out the back of the boat for sandwiches for lunch. absolutely fine cabin and the kids loved the towel creatures made by the staff. great for the kids and young adults. we did the dolphin excursion in Cozumel and it was a terrific time for the kids. Can't wait to try this again.a great family get together.Our travel agent was Maggie at Cruise Brothers and we look forward to relying on her again for the help and information and great travel deals she provided.

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Jul 17, 2013

Western Caribbean

Carnival Magic was the largest ship my wife and I have been on. This was our first cruise with family members; son & daughter and their spouses, eleven grandchildren and our children's spouse's parents for a total of 23 people. Everyone had an enjoyable time from start to finish. For the most part the food was very good. Buffet foods had a good selection and were good. I believe everyone tried various meal selections and a couple times if

dinners weren't to your satisfaction, they were replaced with another selection without question. When is doubt, there was always pizza for the kids! We had a four person balcony room on the six floor. Very good room, no issues. The activities were good, although me and my wife spent most of our time with grandchildren, going here and there throughout the ship. We spent a large amount of our time at the Water Works swim area, which is very well designed and keeps kids and grownups busy. As for the grandchildren; we had 2 in Club O2, two in Circle C club and six in Camp Carnival. From what I heard from the children; Club O2 was very good, Circle C left a little to be desired and Camp Carnival was fair. The kids were in and out of the clubs throughout the day, never complained. Our 21 month old grandchild stay with his parents or us throughout the cruise. There was a sitter program, which we didn't use. First port of call, Jamaica, children and grandchildren totally enjoyed a zip line excursion. Second port of call, Grand Cayman, the whole family, except for our 21 month old grandson, enjoyed a swim with the dolphins and stingrays. This appears to have been the most memorable excursion on the cruise. Third port of call, Cozumel, each family were basically on their own, which most of them went swimming and snorkeling. Overall the cruise was very enjoyable and the first cruise for a few of our grand children. I believe everyone enjoyed the dancing and singing in the Southern Lights dinning room each evening. Our waiter and staff really did a good job in getting our grandchildren involved. Most of all it was a memorable trip and will always be cherished by each family member.

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By Matt_CR

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Jun 4, 2013

jamaica

Carnival Cruise lines has lost a customer for life. My wife, son and I were going to leave on the Magic from Galveston, TX...BUT we forgot our passports but got copies of our birth certificates. Mine and my sons were ok, but my wife's was "unreadable" according to customs....but Carnival and everybody else could see it was fine. Since it was our 20th anniversary celebration we didn't go. Carnival at the port (a supervisor, Team lead and team member)

said to call a number they gave us and for a rebooking fee we could go on a later sail. I called the next day, Monday, fought with folks and lost to their lies. Bottom line is we are out $2,627.00...no vacation this year. I guess its back to Kuwait & Afghanistan for me and we'll try another cruise line for our 21st. You would think with a sinking, standed ship and several bad news reports they would want to help their reputation, but I guess I just tell everybody at Fort Hood to stay away from the lies of Carnival. n/a n/a n/a stay away from Carnival said to call a number they gave us and for a rebooking fee we could go on a later sail. I called the next day, Monday, fought with folks and lost to their lies. Bottom line is we are out $2,627.00...no vacation this year. I guess its back to Kuwait & Afghanistan for me and we'll try another cruise line for our 21st. You would think with a sinking, standed ship and several bad news reports they would want to help their reputation, but I guess I just tell everybody at Fort Hood to stay away from the lies of Carnival.

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Feb 26, 2013

Western Caribbean

Overall the Carnival Magic has a lot of activities to keep you entertained while at sea. The food was good, there is a pizza stand that is open 24/7, although it does close for 20 minutes each day for cleaning. Dinner was sit down restaurant style, the food was good and they had good diverse menu with really good service. There was a Dive-In theater that played movies each night and they had free popcorn, and free rent a blanket. There was also

a sports deck that included mini golf, running track, workout area, basketball, fuzz ball, and a pool table. Breakfast and lunch were served on the Lido deck (10th floor) and is buffet style. There are 2 elegant nights, ours were the Monday night and Thursday night but you don't have to do elegant night. You can choice to have dinner on the Lido deck instead and pretty much the same food. Buy the Fun Book Shopping Guide, it is $20 and has a ton of free coupons and other great discounts if you plan to shop at any of the ports. You are allowed $800 of merchandise per person tax free, and 2 Liters of alcohol per person tax free. Here are a few things that we did not care for or wished we had known a head of time: There were some activities that did cost extra: bingo, laser tag. If drink a lot of soda, the soda card is the way to go for you but you have purchase it within the first 2 days (while you are on the ship is cost $2.24 per can of soda), I would suggest brining the 12 cans of soda per person that Carnival allows you to bring onboard. The food on the Lido deck was o.k. there were time when the food was cold, and kind of bland. The dinner lines can get bad (really long) for Your Time Dinning. The process of disembarking in Jamaica seemed very unorganized, we waited a good 30 minutes and we had to get to excursion. IF you get a interior stateroom there is only one power outlet in the room, I would suggest bring a power strip. There are a lot of photos taken, all around the ship, every time you get off the ship, each night at dinner, but it $15 to purchase one of those photos. Make sure that you bring cash with you when you go one the excursion trips because tips are not included and they are expected. There are some good deals and there are some over-priced things of the on the ship, like 15.99 for aloe when you get sunburned. First Port: Montego Bay, Jamaica We booked the Dunn's River Falls excursion. Pablo was our tour guide, and he did a great job. There was another gentleman (Richard I think was his name) that was our videographer, which you could purchase at the end for $40. Getting to Dunn's River Falls was interesting. It was a 2 lane highway down the coast line from Montego Bay to Ocho Rio (about 2 hours away). There was one stop at a shack of a store that charged $2.50 for soda and $4 Redline beer (Jamaican beer). Stop on the way back at same place for jerk chicken ($12.00 per plate). There was a very small selection of snacks to choice from. At Dunn's River Falls, bring water shoes, they say that you cannot wear tennis shoes but we saw several people that did anyways and they did fine. Of course you can rent water shoes for $7.00 or buy some new ones for $17.00. The hike through the water was really neat, a little intense at times and lots of picture taking opportunities. On the way back to Montego Bay there are 2 stops, one at the same little shop so that you can get jerk chicken, drink and go to the bathroom and then at a souvenir shop that was way overpriced, $24 dollars for tee shirts. Second Port: Georgetown, Grand Cayman We did not book an excursion for this port, we decided that we would just walk around and shop. There are a lot of really cool shops, some pricer than others but deal can found. My wife really like the Del Sol shop, which has the color changing shirts (they change color in the sun light) and they are $25 each. We also visited Margaritaville and had a delicious margarita. Last Port: Cozumel, Mexico This was the final port and booked the Fly High Adventure Zipline and Resort excursion. The Fly High Adventure Zipline was awesome, we had a great time. It was super fun, very safe and extremely caring and genuine guides that make you comfortable even if it yours first time. You go 2 rounds of 6 zip lines per round, it last about 2 hours including the safety brief and fitting of the equipment. The resort included a very small beach area, expensive food, 1 free drink per person 1 hour scuba dive equipment, with a view of cruise ships, oh and 1 free towel rental per person. The resort did have Wifi but you have to ask for log in at the front desk. After the resort we did a little shopping and ate at 3 Amigos. Some really cool things about Cozumel: 1. Dos Equis is like Budweiser In America its everywhere. 2. After you get past the first round of shops, the second and third layer are the same products just cheaper. 3. There was a limited number of restaurants to eat at. 4. Most items in pesos (outside port stores) so know the conversion ratio. 5. There are a ton of tax and duty free alcohol and cigarettes, so if that your thing you will be in paradise.

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Jan 23, 2013

Bahamas

The staff was amazing! I loved everyone they were all so nice and knew me be name, I just felt bad cause I didn't know theres. I really did not have any fun we plan on taking another honeymoon cause this one was a complete bust. I will never go on another cruise either this was a terrible experience. The food was AWFUL, the dinner service was the only food that we enjoyed and the shows they put on were great! The buffet was terrible they were

never opened when they were advertised to be open and the food was disgusting when they were open. It helped my diet cause the only thing I enjoyed was the salad. We just really HATED the food, and room service was just as bad I think they just went down to the buffet and got the leftovers from there. The rooms were extremely small, I wasn't expecting a huge suite but I was expecting a little more space. My in laws had a balcony suite and it was tiny as well I expected that one to have a lot more room, they could have done without the coffee table that would have made it more spacious in my opinion. There was nothing to do on the ship, I've never been on a cruise but per my in laws raves about cruises I thought there would never be a dull moment, boy was I wrong. There were a couple of things that were fun but when you spend most of your time on the ship you should get way more entertainment. There was a day that I wanted to just relax in my room and watch some television, well dont do that! there are only 2 channels that dont show strictly news about the ship or what they filmed the night before and those 2 channels only play 2 movies a day, unless you want to spend an arm and a leg to rent something. All in all we had planned a wonderful honeymoon/family vacation that we thought was going to magical since we were on the Carnival Magic, but we were completely disappointed. I will never go on a cruise again and I would not recommend this ship at all, stay away!

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Jan 23, 2013

Bahamas

The staff was amazing! I loved everyone they were all so nice and knew me be name, I just felt bad cause I didn't know theres. I really did not have any fun we plan on taking another honeymoon cause this one was a complete bust. I will never go on another cruise either this was a terrible experience. The food was AWFUL, the dinner service was the only food that we enjoyed and the shows they put on were great! The buffet was terrible they were

never opened when they were advertised to be open and the food was disgusting when they were open. It helped my diet cause the only thing I enjoyed was the salad. We just really HATED the food, and room service was just as bad I think they just went down to the buffet and got the leftovers from there. The rooms were extremely small, I wasn't expecting a huge suite but I was expecting a little more space. My in laws had a balcony suite and it was tiny as well I expected that one to have a lot more room, they could have done without the coffee table that would have made it more spacious in my opinion. There was nothing to do on the ship, I've never been on a cruise but per my in laws raves about cruises I thought there would never be a dull moment, boy was I wrong. There were a couple of things that were fun but when you spend most of your time on the ship you should get way more entertainment. There was a day that I wanted to just relax in my room and watch some television, well dont do that! there are only 2 channels that dont show strictly news about the ship or what they filmed the night before and those 2 channels only play 2 movies a day, unless you want to spend an arm and a leg to rent something. All in all we had planned a wonderful honeymoon/family vacation that we thought was going to magical since we were on the Carnival Magic, but we were completely disappointed. I will never go on a cruise again and I would not recommend this ship at all, stay away!

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Dec 18, 2012

Eastern Caribbean

We were disappointed that the ship was so large, but with the same amenities so the lines are longer and the areas are more crowded. I found the bed to be absolutely miserable due to the springs that were sticking me in the ribs. I asked for a topper, but was told there was not one. Cost cutbacks were particularly noticeable in the food. Lunch in the dining room is now more of a brunch with an emphasis on breakfast foods. The midnight

seafood buffet is long gone and, as of this cruise, so is the sushi bar. The Lido buffet is miserable and it bothers me to see all the food wasted. The room was tiny and very hard to get around for people of our age. The mattress was miserable and the springs poked me in the ribs. Our cabin steward was fabulous and kept everything in perfect condition although our friends' passports were stolen out of their safe. I think there was considerable lack of communication. I would show up for an activity and no one came and then would be told later that the paper was left out for us to take and do on our own. Now, I have been on many cruises so I am well aware of the fact that there are puzzles left out. Another was a scavenger hunt that was mentioned as an aside on the daily sheet and only two teams showed up. The nightly reviews were cut down to about two real shows for a week long trip. That was a big disappointment. Now there is more emphasis on the comedy shows held in a tiny lounge at the other end of the ship where you have trouble even getting a seat. The ONLY real positive on this trip was that the dining room dinner menu and food were outstanding.

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Nov 11, 2012

Western Carribean

Just returned from our cruise. The service on this cruise was great and our cabin on the 7th floor was more than I expected. The cabin stewards were very attentive and provided wonderful service. We were very disappointed in the food. It was not very good and most of the time was served cold. The buffet is very poorly run and the hours they are open is not customer friendly. There was a Mexican Midnight Buffet open from 11 to 12:30, There

was only two open lines and one was closed 45 minutes after it opened. People were still trying to get through the line. The room service offerings were slim and very disappointing. Entertainment was not very good. If you are in to nothing but partying and drinking and nothing else this may be the cruise for you otherwise beware.

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Sep 25, 2012

Western Caribbean

I arrived at the terminal around 1pm and was on board ship by 1:40,I guess it paid off getting to VIP Status with Carnival. For some reason we didn't leave Galveston until around 5 pm so I had plenty of time to spend eating,and drinking on board. My room was on the main deck with a balcony it was 3 of us single guys and we had plenty of room. The room attendent was nice and very helpful. Had one problem at the omelet station on Lido

deck,the guy would not fix my egg omelet the way I asked him to put cheese on it while it cooks,he said he would mess up his skillet. Other than that we all had a wonderful time met a lot of pretty women and cant wait to go on our next Carnival cruise Everything was good as far as food choices and quality. The cabin had plenty of room for the 3 of us. The shows and music were enjoyable. I did not go on any tours. Overall it was the best cruise for the money I have ever been on.

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Apr 19, 2012

Barcelona

The new ship lacked the class of the Carnival Liberty. The rooms were much smaller, the service not at all up the scratch and the ship tended to part so far out at locations where the harbor was at its cheapest and ugliest . MSC is much better . They make sure their cruise ships stop close to the centre of the historic port and arrange shuttle boats to take us straight into town. Carnival could learn from this. I was annoyed about the Euro 12 they

charged just to take us into Marseille from the harbor. What a cheek! It was fine but not at all up to standard in comparison with the Carnival Liberty of 4 years ago and MSC. Small . MSC has much better cabins with dressing rooms, even for inside cabins that are not expensive. Costa Concordia (2009) also and better cabins Limited. They should have more activities like P&O cruises who used to have painting lessons; French lessons; art appreciation classes; real interesting port talks and not just cheap sales talk to get tourists to the shops they want but to tell them about historic interesting locations. The entertainment on P&O was much higher quality ( better class performers) Even in 1995 P&O had better quality performers, lecturers to talk on ports etc. Much more finesse. One can easily see that carnival hires people who have no real experience. The cruise itinerary was great except for Barcelona as the start point, the most dangerous city I have yet visited, where the sirens go off every 10 minutes for police in town. If they would just stop closer to the city old ports where all the beautiful building are it would be so much better. The ship was otherwise ok. Be mindful they charge VAT on products you buy in the shop, even if the ship is outside of local waters; I found this annoying as it should then be tax free. many people don't realize it. I enjoyed the stops in the various cities. The accommodation was fine and they always put shower jel in the bathrooms, which was nice. It annoyed me that they were not good with putting people of the same age group together at tables during meals.

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Feb 6, 2012

Western Caribbean

We have been on 2 other cruises prior to this but this doesn't even come close to either of those. The overall planning is a total disaster and the cruise director should be tossed overboard. The crew is all very young and don't seem to know anything, can't answer any questions and barely can speak or understand english. The food in the main resturant (Southern Lights) was very good but if you didn't dine there you were pretty much out of luck.

For the most part the food on the LIDO deck (deck 10) was the same every meal. The quality of the food there was poor at best. The hamburger/hot dog/pizza areas were a travisity. The service except for the Southern Lights resturant was like it was an effort for the crew. The sandwich bar aft deck 10 was as if they had to go out of thier way to wait on you. The only service I saw that was good was at the bars and only then if you were buying alchol. We were told when we booked the cruise the room would be a king/2 twin beds with a couch that made into a bed or a bed that pulled down from the wall. When we got there we found the third bed actually pulled down from the ceiling and was a problem for us as we were all seniors. To get in the bed you had to climb up a ladder with very narrow steps. This is unsafe especially if you had to get up during the night. The entertainment was the worst we or anyone we talked to has ever seen on a cruise ship. There was one show per night plus some comedians which started immediately following the main show in the theater but was at the opposite end of the ship. The comedians were the only shows with early and late shows which were held in a reasonably small lounge (spotlight lounge) but the people attending the early shows just stayed for the late show and there was no room. For the most part you had to pick the main theater show or the comedians but you couldn't see both. The absolute worst two things was the trip down to Cozumel was very rough because we lost about 5 hours having to return to Galveston with a passenger who needed medical treatment. We ran full steam all the way down without the stabilisers to try and make up the time. The other was the disembarkation when we returned. We were told if you hand carried your luggage you would be able to diembark early and we has some family that needed to get to the Houston airport so that is what we did. Many of the passengers congerated and were put in the main theatre until time to disembark. Apparently something happened to the ramp and everyone had to get from the 3rd deck to the 0 deck and with no secse of control the word came for everyone to go to floor 0. It became a free for all. The elevators were overloaded with handicapped people so the staff told everyone go down the stairs. Now you have 300 or so older people trying to carry thier luggage down 6 flights of stairs. God was watching over us because he knew the crew really didn't care. After we were off the ship and on a bus to parking lot the woman beside me said she had been on 31 cruises and this one was the most disorganized, worst food, and total lack of entertainment or any cruise she has been on. I don't think you can find a better testimonial than that. With a new cruise director, some planning, some entertainment, and some crew training this might be a pretty good cruise, but is seriously have my doubts.

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Dec 27, 2011

Western Caribbean

This was my first cruise however there were 12 adults and 5 kids on our group and collectively the adults have taken over 30 cruises. The ship is big and beautiful but Carnival has not figured out how to perfect the food and service yet. If you build a ship to accomodate 4700 guests then please figure out how to serve good food and provide good service. There were many good things about this cruise but the things that were not good were so glaringly

obvious that we agreed we would not cruise this ship in the future. You can get a better breakfast any day of the week at Denny's or IHOP and even at most drive-thru restaurants. Eggs Benedict arrived with fully cooked yolks and the Hollandaise had all the moisture sucked from it from a heat lamp. The Hollandaise was hard and looked like the top of a creme brulee. This should have never been allowed to leave a kitchen. Buffet food was flavorless and cold and was worse that anything you would eat at casual dining chains in the U.S. Food in Southern Lights dining room was very mediocre at best. Steakhouse and Italian restaurant are good and the upcharge is worth it. Eat at the pasta bar daily for lunch as there is not upcharge then and the food rocks. Be prepared for long lines in the two good buffet areas on days they are serving the Mongolian or Tandoor foods. Oceanside BBQ was burnt burgers and cold hotdogs with cold pork and chicken tacos. Eat at the ports if you want food with flavor or spice since it is hard to find on the ship. Overall, food was terribly disappointing. Tight but clean and comfy. Four of us in room 7429...two adults and two kids, 6 and 8. Great service by room steward. Nice balcony for good reviews and sun. Just so-so when hosted by ship's crew. Nice water park, basketball court and putt-putt as well as a ropes course. Pools very small and crowded and this ship had 1500 kiddos so it was very busy. Trivia games and the like for those inside as well as a smoky casino. Only 3-4 shops on the ship. Good enough ship for 3-4 night cruise but not enough variety for an 8 night cruise. Book on your own and save big cash! Booked cave tubing with Vitalino in Belize and it was terrific and 1/2 the cost Carnival charges. Booked zip-lining and beach trip off the boat in Roatan and save 55% over Carnival cost. Great time with family celebrating Christmas and parent's 50th wedding anniversary but we all agreed we would not sail the Magic again. Food and service were not up to our expectations and we spoke with many other guests who echoed our comments. If you only had to eat the food for 3-4 days you could deal with it but we were on an 8 night cruise so it was painful the last 3 days....lots of recylced food, lack of creativity, hot food was cold, lacked seasoning, just downright bad. Ship is beautiful and we sailed over Christmas but were disappointed that Carnival did not get in the spirirt of the holiday. Only Christmas decor was some garland in the lobby area and a small tree. There was no service offered Christmas day, not even a non-denominational service, although there was a Jewish service for Hannukah offered each day at 5:30pm. On Christmas morning Carnival showed informercials on the huge screen around the Lido deck pool...not one holiday or Christmas movie or show was shown and they continued to show infomercials for 1.5 hours even though several guests asked them to change to programming. It is hard to not leave feeling Carnival sold out to infomercials and did not offer any type of service recognizing Christmas. I know you have to respect all religions but to not even offer a non-denominational service is inexcusable and will not be forgooten.

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Dec 12, 2011

western Caribbean

This was our first Carnival cruise. The allure of a big new ship sailing from Galveston won us over. We decided to give Carnival a try. Overall, based on my pre-mind set on Carnival, I was plesantly suprised and pleased with the experience. The ship is beautiful, the food was better than I had expected and the service was equal to most other cruise lines. While the main theatre is lovely, it doesn't eaisly accommodate such a large

number of passengers. One huge problem was that the bingo games were scheduled just prior to the evening's early show. The bingo players remained seated after the bingo was over which meant that the other passengers coming from dinner had no chance for obtaining good seats. There was also a problem with folks being allowed to "save" multiple seats for their other friends. The on-board crew entertainers did well, but their talents were not up to par with other cruise lines. The special effects, lazer and lighting effects were sometimes over powering. One of the best shows was the Legends using passengers in the part of great legends of entertainment...Elvis, Cher, Sinatra etc. Very well done. We stopped in Cozumel, Cayman and Montego Bay. Our first ship booked tour was in Cayman. It was a kayak, snorkel tour called Grand Cayman Kayak Safari. It was a great experience and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in trying either kayaking or snorkeling. The whole tour was in relatively shallow wate & close to shore. It would be a great intruduction to either sport for a novice while having interesting surroundings for others too. Our guide was Jay Henderson and he was great. He is obviously a guy who loves nature and is well versed in all things aquatic.the snorkeling took place around a large coral rock which he described as making you think you were looking at a salt water aquarium...many different fish species all in shallow water and easy to spot.I would definately recommend this tour. The second tour was on Montego Bay. It was the Appleton Estate Rum tour. The tour of the factory itself took about 30 minutes. The drive there was almost two and a half hours over very winding, rutted roads for much of the time. I don't think 5 hour driving time (two and from) was worth the 1/2 hour tour of the Appleton Estate. I wouldn't recommend this tour. I thought the waterslide was great fun. Unfortunately, the "yellow" one wasn't running all the time so I only got to try the "orange toilet bowl" one. It was a blast. The rope course was something else I wanted to try. My mistake was not doing it the first day. I was in my sandals and was too lazy to go back to the cabin for my tennis shoes. The rest of the trip it was so windy the rope course was mostly closed. It did look very interesting and I enjoyed watching those who had the proper shoeson the first day. Word to the wise....be sure to do it first opportunity since it isn't always open. The miniature golf was lots of fun. We played it several times. Suggestion: there should be a sign reminding players to return their putters & balls to the proper place after play. One big dissapointment was the lack of "mature" danceable music with a decent place to dance. We really missed that. For such a large ship, the final debarkation was handled smoothly. The process of being tendered on Cayman was another story. Mass confusion and long waits. Overall, for the convenience of sailing from Galveston on a lovely new ship it was a good cruise. Would I sail Carnival again?....not sure. The food was a very plesant suprise. I had heard that Carnival was at best mediocre. I found that not to be true. The beef wasn't the best in the world, but other dishes were fine. The speciality restaurant, Cucina Del Capitano was quite good both at lunch (no charge) and at dinner with a nominal fee. I was disappointed that the usual complimentary multi-flavor ice cream by scoop was not available. Soft serve just isn't the same and I thought the pricing for ice cream was a bit much. The stateroom was fine. I liked the really dark curtains for late morning sleeping. It would have been nice to be able to hear the loud speaker anouncements in the stateroom via the TV if we chose to do so. Sometimes it wasn't convenient to open the door to be able to hear well. The onboard activities were definately geared to the younger traveler. I missed organized bridge and a good dance band and dance floor as previously mentioned. Stay away from the Appleton Estate Rum Tour unless you like to ride in a bumpy bus for 5 hours. See above.

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  • New

Dec 3, 2011

Key West and Bahamas

Just returned from the Carnival Magic 11-20-11-27 out of Galveston. It was the WORST cruise ever. Thought going on this ship as inauguration would be great, but was not. We have been on over 20 prior cruises and this does not compare to any of them. The staff was very rude and unfriendly. To the point they told you they did not want to be there. Dining staff threw forks and knifes on the tables and were rude to everyone. Could not even get

water. The cruise allowed minors to gamble on their parent's laps, allowed minors to be in the Serenity and use the hammocks and allowed a man to stay on the cruise that exposed himself to teenagers in the hot tub. The Serenity area is suppose to be adults only. No one would tell them this. Had 16 drink coupons purchased prior to disembarking by a relative. They charged on Sail and SIgn for them plus for the drinks that were suppose to be included with the coupon. Still trying to get all this rectified. Watch your charges on your sail and sign card. Also, this ship is NOT handicapped accessible to go down the halls out of your cabin. We were on the 9th floor. All day long from 5 AM to 11 PM the stewards had all their carts, vaccuums, laundry bags etc in the hallways so you could not push a wheelchair down them. There were only 3 handicapped restrooms in the middle of the ship. Horrible on sea days. Especially if you were in rear or front of ship. Very difficult to get around in wheelchair. There is so much more but I will not go on to bore you. Just beware. Carnival has gone down hill over the years, not only with food but service. We will not be going back. Will sail with others. The food was HORRIBLE. Never had one item the whole week that was warm or even slightly cooked correctly. Should have known when we boarded the ship and had under cooked pasta, freezing cold with no sauce. Don't really feel as getting dressed up to go to dining room to have MEATLOAF was appropriate for the main dining one evening . A little low class for me. The smell in the hallways were horrible. Across from our balcony cabin was this horrible musty, moldy, sour smell. Even got into our cabin and made clothes etc smell by the end. The noise level on the 9th deck is horrible from the thrusters. Could not even stay in bed at night. The shaking and rattling was unbearable. Also, the balcony cabin in the back of deck 9th has the horrible noise of people moving around the deck chairs by the pool ALL night long. We had two cabins, that were suppose to have joining balcony, but could not open door between the rooms on the balcony because it would block one room from getting out of their cabin. The teen club was great for our son. He did enjoy himself with the others. In Nassau, 6 mega-ships were in port the same day, same time. Could not even get around there were so many people. Can you image 15,000 people disembarking at the same time. Ended up returning to the ship after the crowds were not passable. The people were 9 deep and thick in the city on the streets. Can imagine what Atlantis would be like with all those people. Hated this port.

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By Ryan_CR

  • New

Sep 12, 2011

Mediterranean

We had a great time aboard the Carnival Magic. The ship itself is new (as of 2011) and enormous. To be honest there are more than a few decks I never even got around to visiting. The ports of call were all interesting (volcanoes everywhere) and the excursions range from adventurous to relaxing. We elected to do an excursion at every port but that may have not not been best decision. Excursions every day meant the pace was high: get up at 6 am and

have a great breakfast, shore excursion for 8 hours, back on the boat to do whatever you want for a few hours, dinner at 815, pass out from exhaustion at 10, repeat. Day(s) (I can't remember if there was more than one) at sea were a fun reprieve from the standard pace. Pretty much everyone was out on the decks enjoying the sunshine and it was one of my favorite days on the cruise. The captain of the ship was nice enough to deviate a little so that we could pass by really close to the erupting volcano, Stromboli. A cruise ship with everyone on deck cheering whenever it erupted was a great experience. Since most of the days were spent ashore I usually only experienced breakfast on the Lido deck (10th floor buffet) and dinner in the Northern Lights dining room. The Lido deck has everything you could want for breakfast and some things I've never tried before but enjoyed. Omelettes, English breakfast, waffles/pancakes, cereal, really anything in a standard breakfast they have. We tried the sit down breakfast once (Southern Lights) and it was delicious, but felt we had to rush in order to finish before our excursion started and didn't go back again. The one time we had lunch on the Lido deck the food was alright but didn't really compare to the Italian food we'd been having on our excursions. Drinks were always limited: juices/iced tea/lemonade/water/coffee/hot chocolate and that's about it. Dinner consisted of a 3-course meal and was always enjoyable. If nothing looked appetizing that night you could choose from a "default" menu that had the standard gourmet burger (got it once, amazing), steak, fish, and chicken. Some of the main courses were a bit on the light side, but I always left feeling stuffed. We ordered room service a few times when the big restaurants weren't open (the non-dinner eating times seemed to change all the time, Lido was only open for specific hours). There are about 10 hot or cold sandwiches you can choose from which are good but small. I would usually get two. Service always came within 20 minutes or so, no matter what the hour, and it was free! Our stateroom was on the 12th floor (Spa deck) and very conveniently located to everything. The room itself never felt cramped although the bathroom/shower maybe could have been a little more accommodating. This was offset by the great service the staff provided; they never seemed to miss an opportunity to clean our room. Having a balcony was convenient especially with the crowded areas of sunbathers. There were only one or two days at sea the rest were in the major ports. This meant that time spent on the ship was given to eating/sleeping and a couple hours each night to do whatever you wanted. That said I didn't participate much in the onboard activities aside from using their exercise facilities. It's great getting up really early and running on their top-deck track in a new city every day, then exploring it in the morning/afternoon. Our first excursion was in Tuscany (I believe it was called "Hidden Treasures") to Grotta del Vento and the town of Lucca. The caves were amazing and Lucca was a nice place to walk around in. The Vesuvius/Pompeii (Naples) and Mt. Etna (Sicily) excursions were fantastic and shouldn't be missed (Etna + Taormino wasn't that amazing except for the Greco/Roman Theater with Mt. Etna in the background). We hiked up to the crater at Mt. Vesuvius (about a mile of quite steep walking) and had a small tour followed by a very in-depth tour of Pompeii. The tour guide was extremely knowledgeable and never seemed to take a breath. We had a guided tour separate from Carnival for Rome (Civitavecchia), but the Rome sights are definitely worth seeing. The more forgettable tours were the city tour of Mallorca/Majorca (they have shuttles you can take to the interesting parts) and Les Baux de Provence (hour+ drive to and from Les Baux for a couple hours to walk around in a small, but nice medieval town). I never felt cheated out of any of the excursions as they were all pretty affordable. Considering all the amazing sights we saw this trip was definitely worth it. The ship felt a bit crowded at times, but as long as you stay away from the main pool area during peak hours, the environment will be lively and roomy. We had a large group (20+), but everything went smoothly and the staff were fantastic. A nice room, awesome food, an abundance of sights, and lots of interesting people made this trip one of the best cruises I've been on.

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By Dan_CR

  • New

Aug 28, 2011

Western Med

Carnival has managed to make a large ship feel small and a new ship feel old -- no small feat! The ship is poorly laid out and is not big enough for the 4500 passengers we traveled with. Although it is new (only a few months old when we sailed) the Magic is more like a ship of the 1990's and is certainly not on a par with the Oasis or Allure of the Seas (Royal Caribbean). There is a definite lack of large open spaces and the competition for deck loungers

is crazy. The food was actually a pleasant surprise - especially in the dining room. However, the ship was constantly running out of things: chocolates on the pillow disappeared after the second night; ice cream cones were not available for the last four or five days of the cruise; cups for cold drinks ran out several times during the day; and I could go on! The rooms are small, which may be one reason they are able to advertise a capacity of almost 3700 (double occupancy). When 1000 or so children and young people are added to the total, the overcrowding is unbearable. We have sailed on other cruise ships with lots of young families and have enjoyed the experience. This was not the case on the Magic. The Adult-only "serenity deck" is advertised as a retreat where "kids are neither seen nor heard." This is not true! The area is right beside the waterpark and not far from the main pool area, so the sounds of loud music and screaming kids are never far away. There is no pool for the adults and the two small pools on deck ten are always overcrowded. The hot tubs are all closed by 11 PM, even those located on the serenity deck, so no midnight soak! The shows were adequate but the theatre itself is too small. In addition, about 20% of the seats are blocked by support columns or give only a partial view of the stage. The movie screen on deck ten is nice but is under-utilized. The destinations are the best part of the cruise! How can you miss with Rome, Venice and Dubrovnik on the itinerary? We had booked excursions with our travel agent, so I cannot comment on the quality of the shore experiences. We had a wonderful time with the friends we travelled with. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the destinations, the meals and the conversation. Next time we will do it on a ship other than the Carnival Magic.

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  • New

Aug 18, 2011

Western Mediteranean

Overall experience was OK., but we will probably not take another Carnival Cruise is this is representative of the Cruise line. Our group consisted of husband and wife and our three young adult children ages 23,21,19. The good: ports of call, length of time in port, excursions available, friendly staff on board, our balcony stateroom, ease of getting on and off the ship. In addition the young adults had a good time "on their own" especially at

night on the ship. Not so good: food see below. The common areas of the ship are not large enough for all the 4500 passengers. The ship is large but the common areas don't seem any larger than a ship with 3000 passengers. Internet is a waste of money- forget about it -it is useless- I received a partial refund after being frustrated for abut 60 minutes. No "fun" in that. Pool- see below Activities- see below Suggestion to Carnival: let the passengers decide whether they want the announcement speaker to be on or off in their stateroom. The only way to hear the announcements is to go out in the hall or they will miss the announcement. Just a simple switch could turn the speaker on or off. Let the passengers decide. The food was mediocre at best and sometimes just plain bad. Lido deck buffet dining was terrible. Most times there was lots of "nothing to eat" at lunch and dinner, and you had better check each and every day for the time it is open,because the time changes. Why? I do not know. If you do not commit to a dining time at the Northern or Southern Lights Dining, expect a long wait 20 minutes up to 45 minutes. The menu is limited but the food is good in these two dining rooms and the staff is very nice. Don't pick this ship if food is one of your top priorities. (On the bright side we only gained a total of 12 lbs- less than 3 lbs each) Our two balcony staterooms were fine and the balcony was adequate for two chairs and a table. Quite limited. The main swimming pool for a ship with 4500 passengers was 18 feet by 36 feet. No room at all! There were hot tubs sprinkled around the ship and a smaller pool in the rear of the ship. The entertainment at night was mixed- good magic show, good dance show, and good audience participation show- but other nights, not much. The "Showtime Theater" cannot hold nearly enough people and if you don't arrive early, forget it- no seat for you! The possible excursions on this trip were good and the time in ports was good. Of course the Carnival sponsored excursions were quite expensive. The two we took from Carnival were the "Florence on Your Own" (abut $89.00) and "Rome at it's Best" (about $185.00). I would recommend these two as the time distance from the port to both Florence and Rome is about 75-90 minutes and your on time return is guaranteed. The Rome excursion gets you into St. Peter's and the coliseum with little waiting, otherwise-it is a long, long wait in line. The other stops are easily arranged on you own- In Naples we hired a cab right off the ship for the 5 of us for $220 Euros for 7 hours plus a $40 euro tip, and we went to beautiful Sorrento. In Messina we rented a car at Hertz- right near the ship- for about $200 Euros for the day, but you could easily just walk around. (My grandfather's home town of San Per Niceto was 20 miles away so we drove there.) Monte Carlo- just get off and walk around, same for Marseille.

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  • New

Jul 30, 2011

Mediterranean

The Carnival Magic is a beautiful ship overall. What we missed on this ship as compared to other ships we have sailed on is a lack of activities during the day. While it's true that many passengers were planning to go ashore to Rome, Florence, Sicily, etc., we wanted to spend one day on the ship to relax after a long flight from Houston to Barcelona. As we read over the daily newsletter, it was clear that very few activities would be offered during

the day. Since this is a new ship (first sailing in May, 2011) perhaps the cruise director has not put together a plan as yet to offer any daytime activities. We had an assigned table at Northern Lights and had great service there for all but one night when, without any explanation, we were told that our table was not available for that evening. The six of us ended up going to La Cucina for a fairly good meal. When we told the wait staff that we were turned away from Northern Lights the night before, they said they had no idea as to why this had happened because they anticipated that we would be coming to our usual table. The food at Northern Lights was good. (We loved the chilled soups.) The buffet at the Lido was not as good other buffets we have experienced on other ships. There was simply not as much variety at the Lido. The specialty areas around the Lido: tandoori, burrito bar, mongolian wok were always too crowded to try. The only specialty area we managed to utilize was the burrito bar - and that was delicious. Our cabins were on Deck 11, and going to the Lido (only thing open for lunch) meant that we had to go through the main pool area where sunbathers were lounging in a mass of suntan oil and tattoos. Not very appetizing. Our stateroom was well designed with lots of storage space. Our room included a Spa package. We loved the Spa, and this was the highlight of our cruise for the six of us. Our stateroom was always kept immaculate by the cabin crew. Entertainment offered at night was so-so. We went to a magic show in the main theatre and another smaller show with a puppeteer. As mentioned, there were few, if any, planned activities offered during the day. We missed that aspect because we have enjoyed lectures and demonstrations on previous cruises with Princess and Norwegian. Our group of six went on a variety of excursions. Not to be missed is Rome, but stay away from the long bus ride and opt for the private train that takes about half the time. Also try and avoid boat rides because the waves can be choppy. An excursion to Capri had all passengers throwing up (including the tour guide). Enjoyed the Spectacular Riviera excursion because of the beautiful coast of Monaco. Also enjoyed the Wines of Tuscany because we sampled some local wines along with a variety of cured meats and cheeses. For the most part, very enjoyable. Carnival is new to Europe, and it has some kinks to work out. We will be cruising either on Royal Caribbean or Celebrity on our next cruise.

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