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Magic S. Caribbean trip report


kctwinmommy
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We did a lesser known beach in Aruba, but it was fine. We spend a few hours there. It's right near the airport.

 

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We didn't go down by it, but there's a water playground thing here

 

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I don't know which one, but this was dinner from one of the formal nights...

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Most of the Circle C itinerary

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I apologize that I didn't finish this earlier, I just got sidetracked with the holidays. I'm going to put up some pictures too.

 

Day 6 - Another sea day - Once again, the biggest problem is the hogging of chairs. We could see that there were rows & rows of chairs right by the pool with stuff on it from in the morning and nobody ever came to use them. We had a spot on deck 11 above the pool and could see it. I just wish Carnival would actually enforce the rules regarding this practice.

 

We did find a nice spot in the corner of deck 11, which was close to our rooms. It was in the corner so there was a table for us to eat at, parts of it were shaded and some sunny, so we could all get what we needed. We spent most of our day hanging here, people in our group coming and going. Our friends went to Cucina for lunch and said the service was very poor that day. I get that being a sea day more people will come, but they said it took well over an hour to have lunch, and over 20 minutes just to get their order taken. My husband and I had Guys again, and eve at the noon time, there was almost no line. Their fries are just awesome! And I'm not normally a seasoned fries kind of person!

 

We saw the new show, Flick, which was very good. We enjoyed it and the theater was packed! As many others have said, get to the theater early if you want good seats. We also had our formal pictures taken that night, with some nice results, so the next night we actually purchased a canvas of one of our pictures.

 

A few more comments.

 

We also saw flick. Huge number of people were saving lots of seats. Lucky to get a good seat even by getting there a half hour early. Show was good but many times had no idea what movie they were doing.

 

Dr E a very interesting guy. He did a Q and A one day and really impressive fellow.

 

One reason we booked cruise was PBE Elizabeth Setzer. Sailed with her once before and she is great. Was great this time but came down with something mid cruise and was out three days.

 

See no reason to tip MD. Did nothing for us other than when he came around one night to see how everything was I asked him if the ship had table magician as we had not seen him. He brought him over to the table one night and he did a few things for us.

 

Waitstaff was excellent. We were well aft and about as far from the galley as can be and our food was brought out promptly and hot.

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Day 7 - Grand Turk - We got off at 8 a.m. to make sure we beat the crowds of the 2nd ship that was heading our way. We had rented one of the cabanas at Margaritaville, which we really enjoyed. As I probably said early on, there were 7 of us, and technically, it's for 4 people, but nobody really cares. There were 2 nice chaise lounges on the deck, plus there's chairs/sofas inside. We actually pulled some of that out on the deck too, just open both of the doors. It was nice to have the fridge there, plus an a/c place to cool down when needed.

 

The other wife and myself mostly hung here the whole day. She actually had surgery a month before the trip, so she had to stay out of the sun for the most part, so it was perfect! The husbands and 2 boys went down by the beach like 3-4 times to do snorkeling. There's a ton to see right there, so if you want, save your money and just bring your own gear! They loved it! I realize some people want to go much further and do more, but if you're looking for easy and simple, it's perfect. We did use the waitress service, which was OK. Early on, she came by a few times, but then when we pushed the button, there was no way to know if it was actually working, and it took like 15-20 minutes before someone else came, our waitress was busy. Not a huge deal for us, it's not like we needed our stuff immediately, but just if you're going to do this, don't wait until you're starving! LOL! We ordered some cocktails as well as calamari and the nachos - which were awesome! We stopped at the shops on our way out and picked up a few things. Nothing truly local, but just a t-shirt or 2, plus a Christmas ornament.

 

Dinner that night was fine. Someone ordered the sea bass and said it was OK, nothing great. We also went to see a new comedian, CeeJay Jones. He was pretty funny, much more R rated than the other 2 that we saw earlier in the cruise. And again, the lines were super long, so get there early.

 

The view of our ship from our cabana

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Our nachos!! Yum!!

 

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Edited by kctwinmommy
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A few more comments.

 

We also saw flick. Huge number of people were saving lots of seats. Lucky to get a good seat even by getting there a half hour early. Show was good but many times had no idea what movie they were doing.

 

See no reason to tip MD. Did nothing for us other than when he came around one night to see how everything was I asked him if the ship had table magician as we had not seen him. He brought him over to the table one night and he did a few things for us.

 

Waitstaff was excellent. We were well aft and about as far from the galley as can be and our food was brought out promptly and hot.

 

Oh we knew all the movies, except one! LOL!

 

And yes, I don't see any reason to tip the MD either. We had a table right near the front, so we saw him go by us several times. We did get the table magician though, twice! But we had the teen boys at our table, so not sure if he gravitates towards those tables more or not. But he was pretty entertaining.

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How did you get to Cocoa Beach from the Airport (assuming you flew and flew into Orlando.)

 

Also, what time did you go out to get chairs when they were all taken up? My husband usually gets up early and sits out there until I join him and finds a seat. Just wondering what time he needs to get out there haha.

 

What did you do about transportation from the port to the airport if you flew? This is our 16th cruise but our 1st leaving Port Canaveral so I am lost :eek:. There are 5 of us and I'm trying to figure out the most cost efficient way to get us to the port as early as possible.

 

Thanks!

Edited by sturderick
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Oh we knew all the movies, except one! LOL!

 

And yes, I don't see any reason to tip the MD either. We had a table right near the front, so we saw him go by us several times. We did get the table magician though, twice! But we had the teen boys at our table, so not sure if he gravitates towards those tables more or not. But he was pretty entertaining.

 

We enjoy table magician and wonder how many tables he visits each night. We have been on cruises and never even seen him walking around the DR.

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How did you get to Cocoa Beach from the Airport (assuming you flew and flew into Orlando.)

 

Also, what time did you go out to get chairs when they were all taken up? My husband usually gets up early and sits out there until I join him and finds a seat. Just wondering what time he needs to get out there haha.

 

What did you do about transportation from the port to the airport if you flew? This is our 16th cruise but our 1st leaving Port Canaveral so I am lost :eek:. There are 5 of us and I'm trying to figure out the most cost efficient way to get us to the port as early as possible.

 

Thanks!

 

We've always used Cocoa Beach Shuttle. We used them almost 10 years ago for the first time and went back to them again in 2015 & 2016 when we cruised from there. No problems at all. I feel the price is best for the 3 of us and I don't care about waiting 15-20 minutes for our van to arrive, I'm not in that much of a hurry. I know some want/need a private car, but that was much more expensive. I think we paid like $130 round trip for the 3 of us. So we have the reservation for them to pick up at MCO, take us to the Radisson in Cocoa Beach, and then we have the return reservation for when we disembark. There are a ton of other companies around there, so you just check in at a central desk by the parking garage and they let the drivers know how many they're picking up. Looking at their website, it looks like it's $88 one way for 5 people.

 

We didn't get out to the decks until around 10ish maybe. I realize that's later, but I would also look at the video in our room, that shows the Lido deck cameras, and still, at like 8 a.m. there were chairs covered in stuff with barely anyone around. So even when we got out there, later on, the same stuff was still sitting there. Honestly, one day I couldn't find ONE single chair along the entire pool deck (10 or 11)!! That was the day I ended up on deck 5. I just wish that Carnival would actually enforce people hoarding the chairs.

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We enjoy table magician and wonder how many tables he visits each night. We have been on cruises and never even seen him walking around the DR.

 

We did too! And yeah, not sure how many tables he can get to in one seating. I mean, he spent like 10 minutes at our table. And I saw him go to a table nearby, with some kids as well.

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We didn't get out to the decks until around 10ish maybe. I realize that's later, but I would also look at the video in our room, that shows the Lido deck cameras, and still, at like 8 a.m. there were chairs covered in stuff with barely anyone around. So even when we got out there, later on, the same stuff was still sitting there. Honestly, one day I couldn't find ONE single chair along the entire pool deck (10 or 11)!! That was the day I ended up on deck 5. I just wish that Carnival would actually enforce people hoarding the chairs.

 

We were on the Splendor in October and they were actually enforcing the chair rule. I was so excited!! Thanks for all of the information. You have been very helpful.

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We didn't get out to the decks until around 10ish maybe. I realize that's later, but I would also look at the video in our room, that shows the Lido deck cameras, and still, at like 8 a.m. there were chairs covered in stuff with barely anyone around. So even when we got out there, later on, the same stuff was still sitting there. Honestly, one day I couldn't find ONE single chair along the entire pool deck (10 or 11)!! That was the day I ended up on deck 5. I just wish that Carnival would actually enforce people hoarding the chairs.

 

We were on the Splendor in October and they were actually enforcing the chair rule. I was so excited!! Thanks for all of the information. You have been very helpful.

 

We like the clamshells on serenity and very hard to get one. They are being hogged by tribe of towels for hours on end.

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We did too! And yeah, not sure how many tables he can get to in one seating. I mean, he spent like 10 minutes at our table. And I saw him go to a table nearby, with some kids as well.

 

He did 2 tricks for us maybe 5 minutes. Always wondered if you slip him a 5 or 10 will he keep coming back?

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He did 2 tricks for us maybe 5 minutes. Always wondered if you slip him a 5 or 10 will he keep coming back?

 

Well, I can say that we didn't tip him anything. I really do think that if there are kids at the table, he's more likely to come by. On the Legend during the summer, we actually found the guy on the Lido deck, hanging out. So we sat down and he did a couple things. Then a couple of tweens/teens nearby even came over.

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You mention renting a cabana at Margaritaville. Did you rent it when you got there or from a website? We have a large gruop also and that would be a good spot to come and go from. Thanks.

 

It's only done as an "excursion" through Carnival's website. And if you're going to do it, book as soon as you can. There's only 10 of them, and on our day, there were 2 ships in port, so they will sell out.

 

https://www.carnival.com/shore-excursions/grand-turk/poolside-cabana-rental-440035

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Well, I can say that we didn't tip him anything. I really do think that if there are kids at the table, he's more likely to come by. On the Legend during the summer, we actually found the guy on the Lido deck, hanging out. So we sat down and he did a couple things. Then a couple of tweens/teens nearby even came over.

 

Dont think this guy did but some of them will put on a show in a lounge during the cruise. One asked people to put something on comment card that we liked his show as he wanted to become a flyon.

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Dont think this guy did but some of them will put on a show in a lounge during the cruise. One asked people to put something on comment card that we liked his show as he wanted to become a flyon.

 

Oh this one did have a show the one night. And maybe I'm confused, but it may have been because of a cancelled comedian. I can't remember. But I know he told us that he was going to have a show one night, but we didn't make it to see it.

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Here's a few more pictures before I finish the report...

 

Passing by the Dominican Republic on our way to Grand Turk

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The view from the Margaritaville pool, you can see the Magic there

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The 2 ships docked in Grand Turk

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Snorkeling near the ship in Grand Turk

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Edited by kctwinmommy
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Day 8 - Sea Day - Once again, the standard issues arose, but since we had found our little table and chairs in the corner, it was all good. This time, the brunch was a bit better. We only had to wait like 10-15 minutes for food. We of course had the standard last night dinner with the waitstaff, same singing/dancing. We went to the Ship stars show, this time was quite good. They even had a couple do a dance routine, which was different.

 

We did have the table magician come by again. His name was Sameer. We found him to be quite good, so I'd recommend stopping to see his act if you come across him. I realize they don't always do shows on the ships, but we've found them in the Lido buffet area, later on night, or if you see them at dinner and they can stop by - ask.

 

Oh, and we did go to the balloon drop on the last night, with all the notes people write inside. It was OK, but I thought there was more of a purpose for writing the notes we placed in there. We also bought a canvas this time, our first one. We've often bought a formal picture, but never a canvas, so we thought we'd get one this time. It really came out pretty! Although on that last night, when we picked ours up (we ordered it the night before), the sales counter was understaffed and very busy. People were waiting 15-20 minutes just to get helped. I think there was some miscommunication on who was supposed to be doing what. A worker came over from the other side to start helping and seemed frustrated that there weren't more workers there.

 

My overall notes, general impression of the Magic - The lines for things were definitely longer than we've dealt with in the past. It's a big ship though, so there's a lot to do and see. I liked having more options for food. I felt that there was more motion/movement than past ships/cruises. But I also realize that could be due to the ship, the weather, etc... I also learned early on about the light control by the door. I saw the piece of paper sticking out of the slot, by the front door, and took it out to look at, then put it back in. Maybe everyone else knows about it, but what they expect/thought people would do is put their S&S card in there. We didn't, neither did the previous guests, nor did our friends. People stick a piece of paper in t here. This is how your lights are able to stay on!

 

Debarkation - We walked off, after having breakfast on the Lido deck, at 7:50 a.m. It took us about 15 minutes to walk off and go through customs. And we took all our luggage with us. Then we had to wait about 20 minutes to get our shuttle (Cocoa Beach) to go to Orlando airport.

 

Dr. E hosting the balloon drop

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The waitstaff at the farewell dinner. The one on the far left (in the red frilly thing) was our head waiter, William.

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  • 1 year later...

Just booked the Magic for a similar southern Caribbean itinerary in June 2019. It looks like my kids will really love the ship :) I normally sail Royal and don't spend a lot of time at the pool, but with all those slides I know my kids will want to. Apparently I need to get there early to get chairs!

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Just booked the Magic for a similar southern Caribbean itinerary in June 2019. It looks like my kids will really love the ship :) I normally sail Royal and don't spend a lot of time at the pool, but with all those slides I know my kids will want to. Apparently I need to get there early to get chairs!

 

Well, if they're busy in the pools and slides, you might not need that many chairs! LOL! But yes, it was kind of a pain. I don't know how old your kids are, but we did find some seating areas just above the pools too. I didn't need/want to be right next to the pools. I wanted the sunshine! ;)

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