Last week, I wrote about my first impressions of the Carnival Magic rooms and other public spaces of the new ship. Today I’m going to review the outdoor activity spaces, including the WaterWorks park, with the line’s longest Twister slide yet.
The rope course at sea, which hangs over part of the sports center, is another new feature for Carnival. It appealed to all types of passengers, including pre-teens and teens who sprinted through the course with agility. There is an easy part of the course, which is the inside track, and the more challenging course, which is on the outside track.
I know this woman looks worried. But everyone who goes on the course wears a harness that fits over both of your legs and wraps around your chest and shoulders. There is NO way anyone is going to fall – if you lose your balance, you are just going to hang from the metal frame structure of the course which is, at the most, about 20 feet above deck. I get vertigo sometimes on very high structures, but I didn’t find it scary. Plus, the harness is super secure and the deck below is padded, much like a kid’s playground.
While there were some lines for the rope course, it rarely took more than 10 minutes to get hooked up (Carnival had 2 guys helping people with harnesses). There’s also a pod of lock boxes where you can keep your valuables and camera.
The area underneath the ropes course houses various outdoor activities, such as billiards, ping pong, and mini-golf, as well as seating areas to hang out and soak up the sun.
In the beginning of our cruise, the activity area stayed quiet because of rainy weather. But on the nice days, it filled up with people making the most of the sun.
The area drew all ages – families with kids, of course, but also adults challenging each other to games.
Besides the outdoor SportsSquare area, kids can to go Camp Carnival, an inside activity area.
Not everyone gains weight on a cruise. I noticed a number of people running the track, which circles the SportsSquare, as well as several pickup games on the basketball court. This guy really worked up a sweat, boxing.
The Twister in the WaterWorks section was pretty intense (although a little more so for me because I was trying to do video at the same time). Click on it if you want to hear me scream.
The Twister really throws you around and is very fast. I was a little dizzy when I got to the bottom, but the staff members were very solicitous and seemed to get a kick out of guests’ reactions. Overall, the Twister is probably best for kids who are older than 10, but parents should check with staff to see if it’s appropriate.
The other slide is pretty tame for first timers who want to give it a try before taking on the Twister.
Overall, the outdoor activities and WaterWorks weren’t as crowded as I thought they might be. On nice days – at least on this European cruise – people seemed to gravitate more toward the pools than the waterpark. There also weren’t as many kids on the Carnival Magic inaugural cruise than there might be on others.
Carnival Cruise Lines sponsored this trip, but the opinions are those of the author.
Don Faust | Partner, Contributor and Photo Editor of the travel site www.caroundtheworld.com, winner of 2010 Lowell Thomas travel writing award.