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Carnival Vista Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
964 reviews
4 Awards
Carnival Vista (Photo: Carnival)
Carnival Vista Dining
Carnival Vista Cabins
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Editor Rating
4.5
Very Good
Dori Saltzman
Cruise Critic Contributor

Carnival Cruise Line's 3,954-passenger Carnival Vista might just be one of the line's most fun with so much to do from scheduled activities to outside attractions and a nightlife that doesn't slow down till late.

Even on a 10-night cruise, we weren't able to get to everything. We did the SkyRide (an elevated bike ride), but not the ropes course. We tried out the outdoor Twister board, but never got a chance to play mini-golf or outdoor billiards. We never hit the water park either. We went to the 4D Thrill Theater movie theater but never saw an IMAX movie. We saw four Playlist Production shows in the main theater, but skipped the magic show in favor of an evening of comedy. We made it to only one RedFrog Pub & Brewery trivia session, and never got to try one of the pour-your-own-beer taps or enjoy a drink in the pub's outdoor seating area.

Cruisers we spoke with had the same experience -- so much to do and not enough time. Yet, despite the constancy of activities, Carnival Vista never felt manic. There was no sense that if you didn't do it all you were missing out. Perhaps that's because our fellow passengers were all laid-back, as ready to chill out as they were to have fun.

While you can find places to be solitary and quiet (the adults-only Sanctuary, for instance) if that's what you're looking for, Carnival Vista is not a ship for wallflowers. It's an extroverted ship full of friendly people, most of whom come from English-speaking countries, though you'll hear a fair amount of Spanish as well. And watch out during school holidays; the ship's passenger count can get pretty close to 5,000 with well over 1,000 kids during the busiest months.

Between the laid-back and friendly passengers, always-smiling crew and plethora of onboard activities, Carnival Vista maintains a vibe that is young at heart and down to earth.

Health & Safety

Carnival Cruise Line is mandating a fully vaccinated policy for those 12 and older on Vista sailings from Galveston. Within the limits of the CDC's definition of a "vaccinated" cruise consisting of 95 percent all passengers and crew, vaccination exemptions are possible with preapproval, including for children.

Carnival ships are sailing with reduced overall capacity, currently around 70 percent.

Before Boarding

  • Proof of travel insurance covering COVID
  • Proof of completed vaccination at least 14 days prior to sailing for over-12s
  • Negative PCR or antigen test within 72 hours of embarkation for all passengers, regardless of age
  • Pre-embarkation online health questionnaire
  • Online check-in and arrival appointment required
  • Masks required for all guests over age 2 during the entire embarkation and debarkation process, and while on any form of transportation

Onboard

  • All passengers age two and older are required to wear face masks in elevators and in designated indoor entertainment areas, all retail shops, and in the casino, except when eating or drinking.
  • Additional screenings, testing, and contact tracing as needed
  • No capacity limits in bars or restaurants
  • Cabin service once daily (rather than twice), with guests allowed to choose morning or evening
  • Bar and restaurant menus, The Fun Times, and safety drill are provided via QR codes and the Hub App
  • Sanitizing and hand-washing stations all over the ship
  • No supervised Camp Ocean children's activities for children under age 12

Off the ship

  • Vaccinated guests may participate in Carnival operated tours or explore independently
  • Some ports, including Grand Cayman, Belize, and ports in Jamaica may require additional testing or screenings before disembarking
  • Masks may be required on tours, in some ports, and in some businesses

Pros

Tons of fun with a water park, IMAX, ropes course, sky-high bike ride and brewery onboard

Cons

Dining room menus repeat too often and dishes dubbed too fancy by Carnival's passengers

Bottom Line

An action-packed ship with more activities than you can possibly do in seven days

About

Passengers : 3954
Crew : 1,450
Passenger to Crew : 2.73:1
Launched : 2017
Shore Excursions : 207

Sails From

Inclusions

Included with your cruise fare:

  • Two main dining rooms, the buffet and select other eateries
  • All theater shows and the comedy club
  • Use of the SkyRide, ropes course, water park, mini-golf and other outside SportSquare activities
  • Most daily activities unless noted below
  • Use of the gym, but not most classes

Not included with your cruise fare:

  • Gratuities ($13.99 per person, per day or $15.99 per person, per day for those staying in suites
  • Automatic beverage (18 percent) and spa tips (15 percent)
  • All drinks beyond water, tea (including iced tea), coffee and select juices in the buffet
  • Spa treatments
  • Shore excursions
  • Wi-Fi
  • Activities including, but not limited to the IMAX and Thrill theaters, arcade games, bingo and Build-a-Bear
  • Photos and artwork

Carnival Vista Dress Code

Daytime: Casual, with shorts and T-shirts most common inside the ship and bathing suits and cover-ups de rigueur on the pool deck.

Evening: Fairly casual (though shorts and tees are typically replaced by long pants and nicer tops) except on "cruise elegant" nights when men are asked to wear long pants and collared shirts and women are expected to dress up a bit. Suits, sport jackets and gowns are not required. On cruise elegant nights you can dine in the buffet without dressing up at all.

Not permitted: Cutoff jeans, shorts and swimwear are not permitted in the main dining room or Fahrenheit 555 steakhouse.

For more information, visit Cruise Line Dress Codes: Carnival.

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Find a Carnival Vista Cruise from £75

More about Carnival Vista

Where does Carnival Vista sail from?

Carnival Vista departs from Galveston

Where does Carnival Vista sail to?

How much does it cost to go on Carnival Vista?

Cruises on Carnival Vista start from £75 per person.

Is Carnival Vista a good ship to cruise on?

Carnival Vista won 4 awards over the years.
Carnival Vista Cruiser Reviews

Our Best Cruise Experience Out of Many

Fun was Carnival typical. Staff on the ship was friendliest and most welcoming of any cruise I have been on - they went out of their way to engage and say hi, etc. Room was well kept.... Read More
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dpreichert

10+ Cruises

Age 60s

Great everywhere but ONE place

The Carnival Vista Rock Band absolutely a must see… we spent lots of time listening and dancing… Amazing group.... Read More
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amyvann

2-5 Cruises

Age 50s

Back at Sea

We cruised on the Vista in 2019 and had an extended aft cabin and loved it. This time we booked a spa cabin on 14 since the afts were booked..... Read More
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Sharonlee912

10+ Cruises

Age 60s

My Return To The Ocean & My Honey's First Cruise

Can not wait until our next sailing on the Vista!... Read More
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CNCTexas

10+ Cruises

Age 50s

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