Carnival Cruise Line has a growing fleet of ships. This year features the arrival of Carnival Horizon. Carnival Panorama will go into service in 2019. Both new ships will be packed features that reflect Carnival’s trademarked ‘Fun’ element which weaves its way throughout the entire experience. Still, The Fun Ships did not get that way by accident.
Five Carnival cruise ships you need to sail on bring a wide range of travel experiences. Let’s take a look.
Carnival Paradise – The youngest of eight Fantasy class ships, Carnival Paradise started as a completely non smoking ship. It was an experiment of sorts that paved the way for smokers and non to exist nicely together. Way ahead of its time, Carnival Paradise eventually gave in to smokers but not before recording the experience in the cruise line’s history book. This was a first. That lesson learned would carry forward to new Carnival Vista.
On any other cruise line, the smoky casino bar would waft over into other areas of the ship. On Carnival Vista, it is positioned to be convenient for gamblers and not make the rest of the ship smell like smoke. Everybody wins.
Nearly 20 years later, the 2,052-passenger ship would be first to deliver U.S. citizens to Cuba with many other cruise lines following right behind. That jumpstart brings an additional ship to Cuba for Carnival’s second season. View Prices on Cruises on Carnival Paradise
Carnival Victory – Not long after the launch of Carnival Paradise a new class of ships came into service. Carnival Destiny was first and would eventually be transformed into a different ship (see below). Sister ship Carnival Victory is a good next choice among Carnival cruise ships for a variety of reasons.
Also, a larger ship than Carnival Paradise, it’s the next logical step for working your way through the brand. View Prices on Cruises on Carnival Victory
Carnival Legend – Carnival Legend is a Spirit class vessel like Carnival Spirit, Carnival Pride and Carnival Miracle. We like Carnival Legend because it is the second Carnival ship to feature the unique Green Thunder at-sea water slide and it sails seasonally from Australia.
Carnival Dream – Carnival Dream as well as sister ships Carnival Magic and Carnival Breeze were launched with the widest variety of activity, dining, and entertainment options of the entire fleet. Dream class brings a more diverse selection of stateroom accommodations, making the ship perfect for family travel.
Carnival Sunshine – Carnival Sunshine is actually 1996’s Carnival Destiny, skinned down to bare metal and transformed into basically a new ship. 25 branded elements of Carnival’s Funship 2.0 initiative were added during a $155 million dry dock, Carnival’s most ambitious to date. We mention Carnival Sunshine last but this one is usually one of the better values offered. This is also the class of Carnival cruise ships of which there is just one.
All the ships we see here have the exact same children’s programming, many of the same bars, restaurants, dining venues and entertainment. They sail from home ports scattered around the United States, making driving to the port a real possibility. Don’t let the vintage of Carnival cruise ships cloud your judgement when choosing. All are frequently refurbished and made nearly new from time to time.
Chris Owen shares frank, inside information about cruise vacations on ChrisCruises.com