22 Reasons to Cruise on Carnival Spirit

How many reasons do YOU need to go on a cruise with Carnival Spirit?

Well, when you’re on a ship that’s nearly the length of three football fields and 12 decks tall of things to do, see, taste and try I can recommend a few good reasons whether you’re after an action-packed holiday or just want to relax and unwind.

Here’s 22 good reasons to cruise on Carnival Spirit:

1. Sail from Sydney

In case you haven’t heard, from October 20th, 2012 Carnival Spirit will be making it’s home base in Sydney. If there is a more stunning harbour in the world than Sydney I haven’t seen it. Just imagine starting and ending your cruise with Sydney Harbour as your back drop.

Carnival Spirit will be the first Carnival ship to be based outside the US permanently, and the largest ship based in Australia year round. Year round cruise options will include New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. This could be your view…

Carnival Spirit
Sydney Opera House and skyline

2. Interconnecting Family Rooms

Whilst there are heaps of staterooms and suites to choose from to cater to everyone’s needs and budget, it was the interconnecting staterooms that were ideal for us as a family. It’s basically where two rooms become one, like in a hotel. If you have kids and want them close but you still need your own space then this is the room for you.

Our room was quite spacious and well appointed with ample storage. It had a flat screen TV in each room, a bathroom in each room, and a  joint balcony. It was a great haven for us as a family to rest and relax after a full day of cruise activities…

Carnival Spirit
Interconnecting Stateroom

3. Over 40 Activities Per Day

As they say you can go from zen to adrenaline and every speed in between. There are over 40 activities per day including dance classes, a bartender program, fitness classes, dodgeball, cooking demonstrations and much more…

4. Serenity Deck

At the very back of the ship is the Serenity Deck which is an adults only sanctury (18yrs +) that is a free area to enjoy at your leisure. For us the Serenity Deck fitted perfectly with the words “Kids Club”. As busy parents to two young daughters it’s not often we get much down time, so the idea of relaxing uninterupted on Serenity Deck whilst Kalyra was happy socializing with kids her own age in the Kids Club was very appealing.

This kid free haven has padded turquoise deck chairs, cabanas, comfy lounges, a pool, a heated spa, and soft music playing in the background. So grab a drink, or a book and enjoy the 270 degree views of the ocean…

Carnival Spirit
serenity in the cabana
Carnival spirit
Serenity Deck

 5. Hit the Pools

It wouldn’t be a cruise without hanging by the pool. And with two family friendly pools and spas on board, plus the pool and spa in “Serenity” you and your kids can swim, play, or relax till your hearts are content.

The pool deck is pumping with live music and fruity cocktails. Each day there is a cocktail of the day, ours was a Pina Colada inside a pineapple…

Carnival Spirit
Kalyra and Daddy
Carnival Spirit
Cocktails by the pool

6. Bar Hop

Want a drink and a place to relax? With 16 bars and lounges to choose from featuring live entertainment and shows you are well catered for. There’s a sports bar, piano bar, pool bars, nightclub, comedy club, karaoke bar, a casino, and more…

Carnival Spirit
Mojito time

7. The Jogging Track

Want to take your daily run (or walk) whilst on your cruise then never fear as the Spirit’s upper deck transforms into a full-size jogging track. The sun lounges are removed to make way for the steady stream of active people both morning and night.

For us, it was great to take our family stroll whilst watching the sun set over the ocean…

Carnival Spirit
Evening sunset walk

8. The Fitness Centre

The two-deck fitness centre is another way to stay active and in-shape whilst on board. It has recently benefited from an investment in new cardio and weight machines. Need a fitness assessment on board? Then make an appointment with the full-time gym instructor…

9. Yummy Food

There are food options galore for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There are three sit-down restaurants as well as a cafe and sushi bar with endless options from sushi to steak and pizza to chocolate melting cake. We really enjoyed the Nouveau Steakhouse (nominal charge) where you dine under the stars at this spectacular two-level restaurant located within the glass-covered funnel.

And your kids will not want for anything, with Kid-friendly options always on the menu…

Carnival Spirit

Carnival Spirit
sushi time

10. Eat Ice Cream and Pizza 24/7

Your kids will jump for joy at the 24 hour Pizza and Ice Cream on offer in the Lido deck. If the major restaurants and cafes aren’t enough, you can top them up here at any time of the day…

11. Kids Club

One of the great things about Carnival Spirit was the youth programs. Not only will your kids love the activities and hanging out with other kids their own age, but it’s a welcome time out for us busy parents.

There are three different youth programs catering to different ages:

  • Camp Carnival where kids ages 2-11 have their own space, games, paints, crayons, scavenger hunts, and pool area. Kalyra loved her time at Camp Carnival and the counselors were fantastic.
  • Circle “C”. Teens 12–14 hang out for late-night movies, night time swims, sports, latest video games and dance parties.
  • Club 02. Teens 15–17 gather in their own lounge area to play the latest video games, dance on the state-of-the-art dance floor, or just relax and chat with friends at the non-alcoholic drink bar.
Carnival Spirit
Kids club

12. Mini Golf

Everyone loves a game of mini golf here and there. How about enjoying a round with uninterrupted ocean views on the top deck of your cruise liner! We had so much fun playing with Kalyra on the 9 hole mini-golf course. On Carnival, you have unlimited time and games to enjoy with the whole family…

Carnival Spirit
Kalyra and Daddy

13. The Waterpark

Once Carnival Spirit begins sailing out of Sydney in October, this will be the largest waterpark at sea in Australia. The younger kids will love the mini-slide and “splash zone” which comprises of a giant splash bucket that once full drenches everyone in it’s path below…

Carnival Spirit
Mini racing slides
Carnival Spirit
Splash zone

14. Green Thunder

The adults and older kids will love Green Thunder, the fastest water slide in all of cruising. Your adrenaline starts pumping as the count down begins to the floor beneath you dropping away as you shoot vertically downwards at high speed, twist over the edge of the ship, and then shoot out the other end.

It is a surreal experience. The attendant counts you down and before you know it you are dropping and shooting through the water tunnel at speeds that can only drive your costumes up your butt…

Carnival Spirit
Green Thunder
Carnival Spirit
Green Thunder

15. Room Service

If there’s one thing we highly recommend you do on your cruise, it’s have breakfast in your cabin. Being able to lay in bed, look out the glass sliding door of your balcony over the water, and then have breakfast delivered to you was very pleasureable.

How often do you get the chance to sit on your balcony in the fresh air and enjoy a nice breakfast and a coffee whilst watching the sun rise over the ocean. Just do it…

Carnival Spirit
Breakfast in bed
Carnival Spirit
Coffee on our room balcony

16. The Chocolate Extravaganza Buffet

Yep, if all the restaurants, the 24/7 ice cream and pizza, and the room service experience isn’t enough, then look out because here comes the chocolate. Just wait until your kids set their eyes on the chocolate extravaganza buffet. Remember the jogging track and fitness centre I mentioned? You might be needing it…

Carnival Spirit
Chocolate extravaganza

17. The Sports Court

Up near the mini golf course is a multi-function sports court. You can shoot some hoops, participate in a game of dodgeball, and I believe game’s of cricket will be incorporated into the activities now that Spirit will call Australia home…

18. Sunsets and Sunrises

One of our favourite things about taking our first ever cruise was witnessing the awesome sunsets and sunrises each day with uninteruppted views from either the top deck, or our own private room balcony…

Carnival Spirit
sunset over the ocean

19. Relax

If you normally have busy schedules like us, then you will appreciate the opportunity to just do nothing.

After you’ve checked out the ship and participated in all the activities, there is ample room such as the upper deck, serenity deck, or even your own balcony to grab a book, grab some sun, or even an hours sleep and unwind and rejuvenate…

Carnival Spirit
get some sun

20. The Chef’s Table

For a truly unique dining experience sign up for the Chef’s table, which is a dinner hosted by the Head Chef. Your VIP experience starts with a tour of the galley where you witness the behind the scenes operation of what goes into the preparation and making of the meals on board.

The evening concludes with a multicourse full-service dinner of amazing appetizers, entrees and desserts not found on the regular dining menus with wine pairings for every course. Limited to 12 guests and it costs a very reasonable $75 per person…

Carnival Spirit
Galley tour
Carnival Spirit
just one of the many courses

21. Jimmy’s C-Side BBQ

This new restaurant will offer backyard and beach BBQ delights such as Aussie sausages and grilled chicken breasts.

22. “Aussiefication”

If you like all things Aussie, then with Spirit’s move downunder comes the transformation into an Aussie equipped ship. There will be Aussie power points, no automatic tipping required, Aussie coffee and beer, and the onboard currency will be Australian Dollars.

QUESTION: So, which reason do you like best?…

Disclaimer: We travelled as guests of Carnival Cruise Lines

Craig
Craig Makepeace is the founder of yTravel Blog and has been traveling the world since 2002, first with his wife Caz, and now with his two daughters. Get his free email series on the 4 best ways to reduce travel costs. Follow him on Google+

38 Comments on “22 Reasons to Cruise on Carnival Spirit”

  1. Ummm okay I will say yes to just any one of those if I get to come along! Can we babysit for you next time on the boat :)
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  2. So the food is looking pretty good, you may be convincing me that a cruise is in my future!
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  3. The closest we’ve ever come to a cruise was our Galapagos Islands trip, but that was a fish from an entirely different kettle. First of all, the ship was tiny– only 20 passengers. Second of all, because it was tiny, we were getting tossed about so much that often the only thing I wanted for dinner was to lie down and try not to hurl. I’ve been told the big ships are much, much better, and it certainly looks like this one was as upscale as you could hope for. But I’m not a huge fan of crowds, so I’m still on the fence. The food looks great though!
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  4. Hey Bret,

    Yeah I’m not a fan of rough seas either, but these cruise ships are so large and have stabalizing systems in place so we found it pretty smooth sailing and didn’t really get the “sea legs” thing.

    As for crowds, there’s plenty of places to escape to. Never fear :-)
    Craig Makepeace recently posted..22 Reasons to Cruise on Carnival Spirit
    Craig Makepeace recently posted..22 Reasons to Cruise on Carnival Spirit

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    • Bret,
      I’ve also cruised on Carnival, one of the smaller ships and hurling was one of my biggest concerns as well. I took along some medication to help with that but never used it once. I fully enjoyed the food including trying escargo!!! Not bad. Sailing to Jamaica and the Carribean also made for some great photos.

      Give it a try, escargo is optional :)

      Reply
  5. We’ve never been on a cruise and it’s definitely not our style. However, it seems like it’s a good “no need to think about anything” option to relax, especially with kids.

    Reply
    • Eric,

      Absolutely! The kids love it, and we appreciated the option to do nothing, or go CRAZY :)

      Reply
  6. Your photos definitely make us want to take another cruise! The cabana on the Serenity Deck looks like a fantastic place to relax in. Do all of Carnival’s cruise ships have a water slide like Green Thunder? I’d definitely want to be on a ship that has one :)
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    • Hey Dani,

      As far as I know Carnival Spirit is the only ship with Green Thunder on board, but I assume they all have a water slide of some description! Just come to Sydney, problem solved :-)

      Reply
  7. I don’t know if I see a cruise like this in my near future. I’m kinda worried about getting sea sick, so I rather save my boat courage for Antarctica one day :) However, gotta say that the list and photos you have here are convincing, so who knows….
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  8. Christi

    We are leaving on the Spirit on July 31st from Seattle to Alaska. We are very excited to try out the new Green Thunder and love cruising with the kids. Sad to see her leave the states but happy for you.

    Reply
    • You will have a blast Christi! Say hit to Stu for us the Cruise Director. He’s a lot of fun. Don’t miss his ultimate dance party!

      Reply
  9. I am booked on the Spirit on 8th November – CAN’T WAIT…. and thank you for telling me about the chocolate buffet, now I have something else to look forward to!!!!

    Reply
    • I know! Get there early as there will be a long queue. Where are you sailing to?

      Reply
  10. John Griffiths

    Woo Hoo,

    Just hope Carnival hasn’t done too much Aussiefication. No Boguns.

    Reply
  11. I’ll be using reason # 4. Thank you. They should have upped the age to (25+).

    How long does each cruise last?

    Reply
    • They have different lengths. I think from 5 to 11 days. I think 7 days is optimal

      Reply
  12. This cruise line seems to be loads of 24/7 fun! The water slide looks like so much fun and chocolate extravaganza…yummy! I have never been on a Carnival cruise, but it sounds like a blast! I love that htey have the adult only area too! Anyone know of any great fall Carinval vacation deals?

    Sally

    Reply
  13. I’ve always wanted to go on a cruise, but haven’t yet. I hear the Carnival is usually the cheapest way to go, but you kind of get what you pay for. Either way, I’d like to take a cruise and get some of these pictures for myself.

    Reply
    • I think the Carnival is really good. So far it has been the best of the cruises we have been on and I would say value for money. The new Spirit coming to Australia has heaps of cool features

      Reply
  14. I’m booked on the 8th November as well. We will be on our honeymoon and can’t wait!!!! Yee haaa. Looks romantic, fun, entertaining, exciting, relaxing and dreamy!!! What more could you ask for!!! Anyone else booked for the 8th nov?

    Reply
  15. This was so useful and looks like you guys have a blast…

    Our only concern is as we are a twenty something couple ….how “couple friendly” are these cruises I have read reviews about older children/teenager being quite nasty and disturbing everyone around and the staff turning a blind eye to it.

    For that reason only should I consider P&O which has a limit on under 18 persons ?

    Having said that we would definitely try carnival once we have kids….. :)

    Reply
    • Hi Supriya!

      The Carnival is actually very couple friendly. Craig and I would love to go on it without the kids. The Serenity Deck is my favourite- an adult’s only retreat at the back of the ship. It is the perfect place to laze around in tranquility. There are also plenty of bars and activities to do as a couple.

      I have never noticed any bad encounters with children or teenagers. Everybody has been well behaved and to be honest I barely even noticed any onboard. They have so many fun activities for their age groups that they do, you don’t even see them. There are lots of places to escape on the ship.

      Reply
  16. I always freak out that kids can climb on the rails ??? Is it safe for wild 4 year olds boys

    Reply
  17. In just over 3 weeks I’ll be doing the 10 night cruise to Noumea, Mystery Island, Lifou Island and Port Vila with my little sister. It’ll be our 3rd cruise.

    This post has gotten me very excited for it :) Especially since it’ll be the first cruise I do as an adult. Hello kid-free zones!

    Our previous cruises have been with Royal Caribbean (great cruise line) from Vancouver to Alaska and LA to Mexico. Both amazing cruises.

    Reply
  18. Hi Thank you for all this info, being a first timer on an actual cruise ship is exciting (as opposed to being a migrant on a 5 week UK to Australia voyage which was HORRENDOUS to say the least) it has taken me 37 years to get my husband back on to a ship, yes it was that bad!
    I wanted to ask about the Adult only area. I have heard that people get up at the crack of dawn and lay a book down to reserve a bed and then not bother coming back for hours or maybe not at all so many people miss out whilst something sits empty. Did you find this? I don’t want to have to get up at 3am to reserve a sun lounge. Also if you do reserve something, what happens if you come back and your day bed /book is gone!
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    • Hi Janette,

      This was something I know people suggested Carnival Cruise make a rule about. I think there could be a no reserving seats rule– if you’re absent for 20 mins, your seat can be taken-sort of thing. So I would keep an eye out and just take the seat off them. I wouldn’t bother about getting up early to book a seat. The adults only area is pretty big, you’ll probably get a seat. The one we went on was during Spring break in Mexico so there were heaps of students there who overtook the place. I don’t think it’s typical

      Reply
  19. This sounds, and looks, wonderful! We are taking our two and a half year old on this ship next April and I’ve been feeling nervous about it, but your post has been very reassuring! I’m terrified we will hit rough seas though and I ( or my daughter) will be struck down with sea sickness. Did you hit much rough sea on your cruise and if so could you feel it much on the ship?

    Reply
    • We did hit rough seas coming back to San Diego, but I didn’t notice it too bad. They have stabilizers in the water which helps. You can get sea sickness tablets, which might be good to take if you are prone to sea sickness. There is always a doctor on board in case you get struck down with it. Ginger tablets are good for motion sickness. I didn’t have a problem with it though. You get used to the motion by the end of the first day and then you won’t even notice it.

      Reply
  20. Sue Taylor

    I am going on a cruise on the carnival spirit on july 23rd till august 1st…so looking forward to it …just wondering what the temperatures will be like at that time re what to pack??

    Reply
    • That’s great Sue. Where is your cruise to exatly?

      Reply
    • It depends on where you’re going on the cruise. If it’s Southern hemisphere it will be cold. If you’re heading to the PAcific, it will be warmer but still possibly cool in the evenings. I just do a quick google search to see

      Reply
  21. We are first timers travelling with 2 young children in November to the Pacific Islands and wondering what international currency is required and roughly how much we might need? Thanks

    Reply
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