25 Unforgettable Things to Do on Carnival Cruise

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Going on a cruise with Carnival Cruise Lines means exploring beautiful destinations and enjoying numerous onboard activities. From water adventures at the Carnival WaterWorks to friendly competition at mini golf, there is something to do for everyone.

WaterWorks on Mardi Gras, a vibrant aquatic playground with multiple colorful waterslides, splash areas, and spacious decks, all under the watchful eye of the ship's distinctive winged funnel.

But amongst all these activities, there are a few that you absolutely cannot miss out on. This article outlines the top 25 things to do on Carnival Cruise you cannot afford to skip on your upcoming cruise.

1. Relish a Burger From Guy’s Burger Joint

Guy's Burger Joint on Carnival Liberty, featuring a classic American diner theme with a warm wooden interior and nostalgic decor. The serving counter is adorned with signage celebrating the "Hot Rod" and "California US 101," evoking the spirit of vintage car culture, while guests can enjoy watching TV as they wait for their freshly grilled burgers.
Guy’s Burger Joint on Carnival Liberty

A visit to Guy’s Burger Joint is a must when sailing on Carnival. This spot serves some of the best burgers and fries in the world. Guy’s Burger Joint is famous for its lip-smacking burgers and breakfast sandwiches served each morning. It is based on the lido deck, and it’s included in the price of your cruise.

A mouth-watering burger from Guy's Burger Joint on Carnival Spirit, served with seasoned fries and a cold beer, ready to be enjoyed in a casual dining setting.

2. Start Your Day With a Breakfast Burrito at Blue Iguana

Another culinary delight that awaits you on your Carnival cruise is the Blue Iguana Cantina. This spot is perfect for grabbing a quick breakfast.

The BlueIguana Cantina on Carnival Celebration offers a tantalizing display of fresh ingredients at the salsa bar, with a clean, inviting design featuring warm wood tones and vibrant blue accents, ready to serve up delicious Mexican fare to cruise guests.
BlueIguana Cantina on Carnival Celebration

Start your day with their delicious breakfast burritos or tacos, made fresh and served fast. Nothing says good morning better than a flavourful breakfast burrito from Blue Iguana.

A deliciously prepared burrito from BlueIguana Cantina on Carnival Spirit, accompanied by a refreshing glass of water with a lemon slice, served on a decorative plate for a flavorful meal experience.

3. Enjoy an Authentic Italian Meal at Pizzeria del Capitano

For a taste of Italy on your Carnival cruise, head over to Pizzeria del Capitano. Located on the Mardi Gras, this pizzeria offers freshly-made pizza round the clock. From Margherita to Quattro Formaggi, the variety of hand-tossed thin-crust pies will leave you spoilt for choice.

Pizzeria del Capitano on Mardi Gras, a stylish pizzeria with a modern design, featuring a red and white geometric counter and an open kitchen where fresh pizzas are prepared and displayed.
Pizzeria del Capitano on Mardi Gras

You can also order a gluten-free pie or a Caesar salad. And if you’re still hungry, check out Cucina del Capitano for more Italian fare.

Elegant outdoor dining area of Cucina del Capitano on the Mardi Gras cruise ship, featuring red checkered tablecloths and a serene ocean view at dusk.
Cucina del Capitano on Mardi Gras

4. Other Dining Experiences

For more delectable dining options, Carnival Cruise offers an array of choices that cater to every palate. If you’re a fan of chicken sandwiches, you’re in for a treat. Shaq’s Big Chicken serves up mouthwatering chicken sandwiches that are a must-try.

Guests enjoying a meal at Shaq's Big Chicken on Carnival Mardi Gras, a vibrant eatery with ocean views, featuring a casual dining atmosphere with a fun basketball theme and a sign encouraging 'sauciness'.
Shaq’s Big Chicken on Mardi Gras

Alternatively, you can head to the Lido Marketplace Buffet for a more varied selection of cuisine. The buffet boasts a wide range of global dishes, ensuring you never run out of new flavours to explore.

Spacious and well-lit Lido Marketplace dining area on Carnival Vista, showcasing a fresh fruit station and comfortable wooden seating for a relaxed mealtime atmosphere.
Lido Marketplace on Carnival Vista

5. Face Your Fears at Carnival’s SkyCourse

High up on the ship’s decks, you’ll find the Carnival’s SkyCourse, one of the sea’s most thrilling ropes courses. This heart-pounding adventure course will put your courage to the test as you traverse high above the deck.

Whether you’re a beginner or an adventure-seeker, there’s a course level that’s perfect for you. If you’re up for the thrill, don’t miss this incredible experience!

An adventurous guest navigates the high ropes of the SkyCourse on Carnival Breeze, with the expansive blue ocean and clear skies in the background, adding an element of thrill to the cruise experience.
SkyCourse on Carnival Breeze

6. Take a Breathtaking Ride on the BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster

Get ready for the ride of your life on BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea. This top-deck, electric-powered roller coaster differs from anything you’ve ever experienced. As you zoom around the track, you’ll enjoy stunning ocean views and feel the rush of the wind in your face. It’s an addictive thrill ride that you’ll want to experience over and over again. So strap in and enjoy the ultimate sea coaster on your Carnival Cruise.

Passengers enjoy a thrilling ride on the BOLT Sea Coaster aboard Carnival Mardi Gras, with a sweeping ocean view in the background and the ship's colorful deck below.
BOLT Sea Coaster on Mardi Gras

7. Play in a Mini Golf Competition

Indulge in a friendly game of mini golf, perfect for families and friends. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, you’ll have fun spending quality time together, enjoying the fresh sea breeze, and maybe even scoring a hole-in-one. So grab your putter and get ready for some fun on the greens!

A group of friends enjoying a round of mini-golf on the colorful, sunlit deck of Carnival Mardi Gras, with the ship's vibrant water slides in the background.
Mini Golf on Mardi Gras

8. Play a Round of Ping-Pong

On a Carnival Cruise, fun activities are abundant for adults and kids. Another exciting activity to try is ping-pong (table tennis). Carnival cruise lines often hold tournaments where you can put your skills to the test and challenge other passengers. It’s a spirited and fun way to pass the time and make new friends.

A vibrant game of ping-pong in full swing at Carnival cruise's Sports Square, with players enjoying the sunny deck and the calm ocean serving as a picturesque backdrop.
Ping-Pong at Sports Square

9. Entertain Yourself With Trivia Games

Carnival Cruises are not just about physical activities; they also offer plenty of opportunities for mental stimulation. For instance, you can put your knowledge to the test with a variety of trivia games. From general knowledge questions to Harry Potter-themed puzzles, there’s something for everyone.

Enthusiastic passengers participate in a trivia game on Carnival Breeze, raising their hands in excitement as the host energizes the crowd with a microphone in hand.
Trivia Game on Carnival Breeze

10. Soothe Your Muscles at Cloud 9 Spa

One of the best places to relax on a Carnival Cruise is the Cloud 9 Spa. This spa, courtesy of Carnival, is equipped with a thermal suite where you can soothe your tired muscles.

The spa offers heated tile loungers, steam and dry heat chambers, and rainfall showers, promising a relaxing experience. You can get a day or week-long pass to the thermal suite and enjoy the ultimate relaxation. But remember, the spa area is capacity-controlled on the Carnival Breeze, so make sure to secure your pass in time.

The serene tepidarium of Cloud 9 Spa on Carnival Breeze, bathed in golden light with a row of heated loungers overlooking the tranquil sea.
Cloud 9 Spa on Carnival Breeze

11. Get a Tan While Playing in the Waterpark and Waterslides

Head to the waterpark and waterslides if you’re up for a more energetic relaxation. You can get a golden tan while enjoying the thrilling water rides. The newest ships in the Carnival fleet offer winding slides and water features that aren’t just for kids; adults can have just as much fun.

The BOLT Rollercoaster on Carnival Mardi Gras, a thrilling ride that twists above the deck, next to a colorful water park with slides and pools, offering fun and excitement against the backdrop of the open ocean.
WaterWorks on Mardi Gras

12. Experience the Peace of the Serenity Adults-Only Area

Imagine a secluded oasis aboard the Carnival Cruise ship where you can escape the lively atmosphere and find tranquillity. This peaceful haven is known as the Serenity Adults-Only Area and is exclusively for guests aged 21 and above.

The area is less crowded than other parts of the ship, allowing you to enjoy some quiet time. You can relax in private clamshell loungers, soak in the hot tubs, or even indulge in a light meal from the salad bar.

The Serenity Adult-Only Retreat on Carnival Celebration features a chic pool area shaded by elegant white canopies, with luxurious daybeds and a bar in the background, all designed to provide a relaxing and sophisticated atmosphere for guests to enjoy the sunshine and sea breeze.
Serenity Adult-Only Retreat on Carnival Celebration

13. Revel in the Relaxing Ambiance of the Hot Tubs

What could be more inviting than a soak in a hot tub after a day filled with adventures and activities on the Carnival Cruise? Several hot tubs are scattered throughout the ship, including in the Serenity adults-only area near each pool.

As you dip into the hot tub, let the warmth and bubbling water massage away any lingering fatigue. Lounge chairs are also available nearby, perfect for drying off or relaxing with a good book. While the hot tubs can sometimes get crowded, they offer a great way to unwind and meet fellow cruisers.

Joyful cruisers relaxing in a hot tub on the aft pool deck of a Carnival cruise ship, with the ocean horizon extending into the distance under a soft evening sky.

14. Attend Punchliner Comedy Club

Another must-visit spot on the Carnival Cruise ship is the Punchliner Comedy Club at the Limelight Lounge. Known for its outstanding comedy shows, it’s a favourite among guests. The Punchliner Comedy Club hosts family-friendly and adult-only shows throughout the cruise, offering plenty of laughter and fun.

The Punchliner Comedy Club on Mardi Gras, featuring a chic, dimly lit interior with emerald green walls, modern spherical lights, and plush brown seating, ready for an evening of entertainment.
The Punchliner Comedy Club on Mardi Gras

15. Watch an Outdoor Movie Under the Stars

Head to the Lido Deck for an outdoor movie under the stars. Many Carnival Cruise ships feature large video screens over the deck that showcase films in the evening.

You can sit back, relax, and enjoy a movie in the open air, surrounded by the calming sea breeze. The deck also hosts dance parties on special nights, adding to the festive atmosphere. Watching a movie under the stars on a Carnival Cruise is a magical experience you shouldn’t miss.

Twilight view of the Seaside Theater on Mardi Gras, featuring a large outdoor movie screen above the pool deck with cozy loungers, creating a perfect setting for 'Dive-In Movies' under the stars.
Seaside Theater on Mardi Gras

16. Enjoy Live Music at the Piano Bar

Immerse yourself in the enchanting tunes at Carnival’s Piano Bar 88. Usually located on deck 6, this venue is the perfect place to unwind after a day of activities. A variety of live music performances will keep you entertained throughout your cruise.

You can plan your visit using the Carnival Hub app, which provides a comprehensive schedule of who is playing and when. Whether you’re a jazz, blues, or pop fan, there’s something for everyone at this lively piano bar.

Piano Bar 88 on Carnival Sunrise exudes a cool, jazzy ambiance with plush velvet chairs, vibrant artwork on the walls, and a sleek grand piano set against a backdrop of soft blue lighting.
Piano Bar 88 on Carnival Sunrise

17. Sing-a-Long Session at the Karaoke Bar

Unleash your inner pop star at the Karaoke Bar. Even if you’re not the type to take centre stage, you can still join the fun by singing with a group to your favourite hits.

So grab a drink, gather your friends, and let your voice be heard. This is your chance to shine or enjoy the camaraderie of singing along to some of your favourite songs.

18. Experience a Mega Deck Parties

Prepare yourself for an evening of unforgettable fun at Carnival’s Mega Deck Parties. These events highlight every Carnival cruise and will surely get your adrenaline pumping. From electrifying music and captivating performances to vibrant lights and high-energy dance-offs, these parties are spectacular.

Don’t forget to attend the Sail Away party, a unique celebration that marks the beginning of your exciting journey. It’s the perfect way to kick off your vacation and mingle with fellow cruisers.

Vibrant Lido Deck party in full swing on Carnival Vista, with guests dancing under the night sky as the large screen illuminates the deck with colorful visuals.
Lido Deck Party on Carnival Vista

19. Attend the Hilarious Love & Marriage Game Show

Make sure you attend the Love & Marriage Game Show for a dose of laughter and lighthearted entertainment. This Carnival staple is reminiscent of The Newlywed Game, and it’s guaranteed to have you laughing out loud.

Usually, three couples from the audience become contestants and are asked private questions about each other and their marriage. The goal? To match their partner’s answers. Whether you’re participating or just watching, this game show offers a delightful blend of humour and romance to make your cruise experience even more memorable.

20. Camp Ocean: An Exploration Voyage for Kids

Imagine a place where kids aged 2-11 can have their own adventure while you enjoy your cruise. This place is Camp Ocean, a fun-filled paradise for children. Kids can engage in arts and crafts, video games, and group activities here.

For the older kids, Carnival offers teen hangouts where they can come and go as they please. If your children are fans of Dr. Seuss, they will be thrilled by the Seuss-a-palooza parade and Seuss Bookville. It’s a unique voyage of exploration and fun, making your cruise enjoyable for the whole family.

Related reading: How much does carnival charge for children?

Dr. Seuss Bookville on Carnival Horizon, a colorful and whimsical reading space inspired by the beloved children's author, with polka-dotted walls, bright furniture, and shelves full of books inviting young readers to explore.
Dr. Seuss Bookville on Carnival Horizon

21. Explore the Thrills of the WaterWorks

A world of aquatic excitement awaits you at the onboard waterpark, a favourite among thrill-seekers and families. Located on deck 7 of select ships, this waterpark is home to the spectacular Twister waterslide.

Brave the Blue Lightning or the Orange Thunder, both offering an exhilarating ride down. But the fun doesn’t stop there. With a 150-gallon power-drencher tipping bucket and a dedicated splash zone, the WaterWorks will provide a fantastic day for all.

The Splash Zone on Carnival Magic boasts an array of colorful water slides arching gracefully over the sun-drenched deck, against the backdrop of a calm blue sea.
Splash Zone on Carnival Magic

22. Take a Stroll Around the Promenade Deck

One thing I love to do on any cruise ship is stroll around the Promenade Deck. Whether it’s the first light of dawn or the vibrant hues of sunset, it’s always a delight. You can enjoy the gentle ocean breeze and ambience with a cup of coffee. So, take a moment to slow down and enjoy the beauty of the sea.

23. Partake in a Carnival Kitchen Cooking Class

Are you eager to hone your culinary skills while on a Carnival cruise? The Carnival Kitchen offers a unique opportunity for you to do just that. You can participate in diverse cooking classes, from sushi-making to cake-baking. These classes are conducted by Carnival’s culinary experts, providing you with top-notch guidance.

Each class is designed for small groups, typically with no more than 18 participants, ensuring you receive personalised attention. Don’t forget to sign up online as early as possible, as these classes are pretty popular and tend to fill up quickly. Note that they cost roughly $30 to $59 per person plus an 18% gratuity.

Carnival Kitchen cooking class in session, with a chef guiding guests through a culinary experience, surrounded by modern kitchen equipment and ingredients ready for preparation.

24. Enjoy Carnival’s Signature Seaday Brunch

One of my favourite things to do on a Carnival cruise indulging in the Signature Seaday Brunch. Held in the main dining room, this brunch offers a leisurely and delightful start to your sea days.

With a menu featuring a variety of dishes, from french toast, huevos rancheros and loaded mac n cheese, there are plenty of options. Remember to take your time and explore the menu using the HUB app while you wait for your table. The Seaday Brunch is an experience not to be missed on your Carnival cruise.

A close-up of a creamy coffee being poured during Seaday Brunch on a Carnival Cruise, with a basket of assorted pastries in soft focus in the background, inviting a leisurely morning.

25. Savor Carnival’s Signature Chocolate Melting Cake

Carnival’s Signature Chocolate Melting Cake is a must-try for dessert. This warm, gooey, and decadent dessert stands out on the menu and is a favourite among cruisers.

You can order it in the main dining room and savour the rich chocolate flavour. This dessert is a treat for your taste buds and a perfect ending to your meals on board the Carnival Horizon or any other Carnival cruise ship. Make sure to save some room for this sweet delight.

Carnival Cruise's signature Chocolate Melting Cake served on a white plate, accompanied by a scoop of vanilla ice cream and garnished with fresh strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries, with chocolate pieces in the backdrop.

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I'm Hannah and I've been cruising for as long as I can remember.

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