While on your cruise, you may want to take advantage of the onboard activities and excursions. Here are some practical tips for making each day aboard a great one!.
The “cruises for 18 year-olds without parents” is a must do while on board. These are the 21 things you should be doing while on the cruise.
Carnival Mardi Gras made her debut as Carnival Cruise Line’s flagship in summer 2021, operating from Port Canaveral for the first time.
Carnival’s largest cruise ship is organized into six themed “zones” and contains a variety of entertaining activities and cutting-edge technology, including the world’s first sea-based roller coaster.
On this new Carnival Fun Ship, it’s simple to let the good times flow with more than 20 dining choices and almost as many bars and lounges.
There’s so much to see and do during the Carnival Mardi Gras that we’ve put up a list of “must sees” for visitors planning their trip.
I asked Carnival officials, journalists, crew members, and scores of visitors to describe one or two “don’t miss” events on board while sailing on Mardi Gras in late October.
Carnival Mardi Gras: 21 Things to Do
Here are the most popular suggestions, as well as some insider information:
BOLT: The Ultimate Sea Coaster is the first game in the BOLT series.
(Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
BOLT is the world’s first roller coaster at sea, and it’s a thrilling experience. Don’t miss it because it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen on a cruise ship. BOLT is addicting, and I rode it three times on my trip.
BOLT is a top-deck electric-powered roller coaster in the Ultimate Playground zone of Mardi Gras. Popular Science magazine just awarded this unique roller coaster the “Best of What’s New” engineering award.
The ride’s elevated track stretches over the top decks of the cruise ship and includes 800 feet of exhilarating twists, dips, and turns, including a speeding hairpin loop around Mardi Gras’ tri-colored funnel. BOLT’s motorcycle-inspired vehicles can reach speeds of up to 40 mph while providing 360-degree views of the water 187 feet below.
Riders that want to go fast advised using full throttle throughout the session and utilizing your vehicle’s boost on the straight portions of the circuit as well as just before a dip. To get the most out of each boost, wait a few seconds between each one.
BOLT will cost $15 per person for a two-lap ride as of December 2021. If you need to reschedule due to weather, try to book reservations during the early portion of your cruise.
Carnival SkyCourse is number two on the list.
(Carnival Cruise Line provided this image.)
Carnival Mardi Gras’ 600-foot ropes course, located in the Ultimate Playground zone, is the longest in Carnival’s fleet.
This exhilarating ropes course has two levels, one for novices and the other for those looking for a real adrenaline rush.
Unlike other cruise ship ropes courses, the Mardi Gras ropes course includes a zip line that carries riders out over the ocean with nothing but water below them. It’s thrilling!
You’ll probably want to tackle this free ropes course again and again after you’ve completed it.
3. Cooking Class at the Carnival Kitchen
On Mardi Gras, there’s a Carnival Kitchen.
Do you want to enhance your pizza-making talents or your grilling skills? On Mardi Gras, take a Carnival Kitchen cooking class and learn from Carnival’s culinary experts.
There are a variety of lessons offered, ranging from sushi-making to cake-baking seminars. Each week, a limited number of sessions for groups of 18 or fewer are conducted — occasionally two or three per day.
There’s also an evening workshop session when you’ll make (and consume) a delectable meal, which may include Carnival’s famed Warm Chocolate Melting Cake.
Guests aged 12 and above may participate in classes, which vary in fee based on the class. Make sure you sign up as soon as possible on the website – they sell out quickly!
4. Brunch on a Sunday
(Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
Enjoying a peaceful Seaday Brunch aboard a Carnival cruise ship is one of my favorite things about sea days. The free Seaday Brunch is hosted in Mardi Gras’ main dining room, and it was just as delicious as it had always been.
Due to the popularity of Carnival’s Seaday Brunch, we opted to use the HUB app to avoid waiting in line. Our table was available in about 10 minutes, and we used the HUB app to go through the menu as we waited.
You’ll be pleased you have the additional time since the Seaday Brunch menu at Carnival has a lot to offer. There are plenty of alternatives to please any appetite, from burgers and fried chicken to huevos rancheros and 12 hour French breakfast.
5. Canival Mardi Gras WaterWorks
(Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
The gigantic onboard waterpark aboard the Carnival Mardi Gras is now the biggest in the whole fleet. The waterpark, which is located in the ship’s Ultimate Playground zone, is a favorite among fun-loving youngsters and families, thrill-seekers, and the young at heart.
The 312-foot Blue Lightning, the 229-foot Orange Thunder, and the 265-foot swirling Carnival Twister waterslide are among the attractions at WaterWorks.
On a sweltering day, zipping down these splash-tastic water slides is a great way to cool down. A 150-gallon PowerDrencher tipping bucket and a splash zone for youngsters with a variety of cool water features are also available.
Rudi’s Seagrill is number six on the list.
Rudi’s Seagrill is a restaurant that specializes on seafood.
For years, Rudi Sodamin, Holland America Line’s amazing Master Chef, has been wowing Carnival’s sister line’s guests. Chef Rudi has now extended his amazing abilities to Carnival Mardi Gras with the opening of Rudi’s Seagrill, a specialist seafood restaurant.
Rudi Sodamin’s multi-course meal is outstanding and well worth the $38 per person price tag. Crab Stuffed Lobster Tail, Roasted Halibut, Crab Cake, Dover Sole, and Grilled Colossal Shrimp are among the seafood entrée options.
Rudi’s Seagrill’s 14 oz. New York Strip Steak, Berkshire Pork Chop, and Free Range Chicken are guaranteed to impress even non-seafood eaters.
Rudi’s Seagrill is a popular restaurant, so make your appointments early.
MORE: A Picky Eater’s Guide to Mardi Gras Dining at Carnival
1396 Emeril’s Bistro
(Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
Emeril’s Bistro 1396, the famed chef Emeril Lagasse’s first restaurant at sea, is the crown gem of Mardi Gras’ French Quarter zone.
Emeril’s Bistro 1396, located on Deck 6 in the center of the French Quarter, serves genuine New Orleans cuisine from Emeril’s hometown.
The famous chef devised the restaurant’s menu, which includes individually priced small plates, “A Little More” entrees, “A Little Sweet” desserts, children’s meals, a raw and chilled seafood bar, and even a morning menu.
Sizzling Cast Iron Shrimp Scampi, Fried Oysters, Emeril’s New Orleans Style Barbecue Shrimp, Roasted Duck & Andouille Sausage Gumbo, Lemon Ice Box Pie, and Bananas Foster are among the menu dishes with Emeril’s characteristic Creole flair.
Perdued Pain (French Toast)
Emeril’s cuisine is incredibly good, and the pricing are quite fair. Throughout our voyage, we dined here many times.
Breakfast at Emeril’s is not to be missed. The Pain Perdu, Sweet Potato Waffles, and freshly brewed New Orleans coffee are all delicious.
8. Carnival Mardi Gras Bar Crawl
Cocktail with a Crystal Ball (Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
Onboard, visitors will find around 20 fantastic bars and lounges, which is ideal for a Fun Ship named after New Orleans’ most spectacular party of the year.
On this cruise, there are several new speciality cocktails and bars to sample. Discover some fantastic new pubs and beverages, as well as old favorites, on a fun Mardi Gras Bar Crawl.
In Mardi Gras’ French Quarter, there are two must-see attractions. The Brass Magnolia has a New Orleans feel to it, with powerful Hurricanes and live jazz music on the menu.
Another fresh new bar for Carnival Cruise Line is the Fortune Teller Bar, which is also situated here. Make sure to try the Crystal Ball drink, which is both strong and Instagram-worthy.
In the Italian-themed La Piazza zone, another new Carnival bar, Bar Della Rosa, offers espresso beverages throughout the day and Italian cocktails and wine at night. Two bars are located in the Grand Central atrium, making it convenient for anyone watching a performance to have a drink.
Popular favorites including the Alchemy Bar, Havana Bar, Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse, and Piano Bar 88 are all part of the Carnival Mardi Gras bar lineup.
On Mardi Gras, the RedFrog Rum Bar has been extended into the two-story RedFrog Tiki Bar, which will delight Carnival ship passengers.
Don’t miss the fantastic views at The Watering Hole in the Summer Landing Zone, and while you’re there, pay a visit to the Heroes Tribute Bar & Lounge. Carnival will give a share of the proceeds from the sale of a specialty drink or beer served in a commemorative glass to Operation Homefront.
Guy’s Burger Joint is number nine.
On Mardi Gras, Guy’s Burger Joint
Guy’s Burger Joint is Guy Fieri’s first Carnival Cruise Line dining establishment, and it’s as popular as ever during Mardi Gras. Guy’s Burger Joint, located on Deck 17, provides the same handmade burgers and fries as the rest of the ship. The Guy’s Burger Joint aboard this ship is not only the biggest at sea, but it also serves breakfast sandwiches every morning.
Guy Fieri’s second restaurant, Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse, is located on Deck 8 and serves amazing smoked meats, comfort cuisine sides, and home-brewed beer. On Mardi Gras, all meals at Guy’s Pig & Anchor are presently free.
Big Chicken, No. 10
(Nancy Schretter provided the photo.)
On Mardi Gras, the much-anticipated Big Chicken restaurant opened, and it’s immediately a smash success.
Big Chicken, which was created by Shaquille O’Neal, Carnival’s Chief Fun Officer, provides a variety of delectable chicken sandwiches, chicken strips, and even a fried chicken basket. It’s also the first time a Big Chicken has made an appearance aboard a cruise ship.
Guests may order things with fries and sides including jalapeo slaw, potato salad, and sweet and spicy pickles, as well as white or dark meat (grilled chicken is available on request).
Big Chicken also has a wide toppings bar, and “We Encourage Sauciness,” as the restaurant’s sign proclaims. A fantastic Shaq sauce, barbecue, buttermilk ranch, and buffalo hot sauce are among the sauces available.
Big Chicken serves lunch and supper everyday, as well as breakfast till 3 p.m. Make a point of trying the morning biscuits; they’re delectable.
On Carnival’s Mardi Gras, Shaq’s Big Chicken gets a review.
Shows and entertainment at the Grand Central Atrium
Voodoo Moon is a show about voodoo (Photo courtesy of Nancy Schretter)
One of Carnival Mardi Gras’ six themed zones is the inventive three-deck-high Grand Central Atrium, and it’s a winner.
Guests may enjoy spectacular sea views from the atrium’s massive 3,000 square-foot glass panels carved into the ship’s side. It’s a great location to unwind while listening to live music or participating in activities and competitions.
The Grand Central Atrium becomes a multi-story theater for spectacular concerts including outstanding performers, aerial acrobatics, and special effects at night. The 16 huge LED panels of the Grand Central Atrium may show films, lasers, and other unusual effects, creating an ever-changing background.
The ship’s New Orleans Celebration, complete with a Mardi Gras-style procession and an outstanding “Voodoo Moon” show, is not to be missed. It’s one of the most incredible entertainment events I’ve ever seen on a ship.
Chef’s Table (12.)
On Mardi Gras, a Chef’s Table (photo courtesy of Carnival’s Brand Ambassador John Heald)
On Mardi Gras, foodies enthuse about the Chef’s Table. This small group multi-course dining event, priced at $95 per person, is a luxury, but it’s a VIP experience for just 14 diners, overseen by the Master Executive Chef.
Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres precede a one-of-a-kind menu of appetizers, entrees, and desserts at the Chef’s Table. On Deck 5 Aft, it has its own area. To participate, visitors must be at least 12 years old. Make your reservations as soon as possible since seating is limited.
Capitano’s Pizzeria (nineteenth)
Pizzeria del Capitano
Pizzeria del Capitano, located in the La Piazza zone during Carnival Mardi Gras, provides amazing freshly prepared pizza 24 hours a day.
Margherita, Funghi (mushroom) Pepperoni, Quattro Formaggi (four cheese), and Prosciutto are just a few of the hand-tossed thin-crust pies offered. A gluten-free pie or a Caesar salad may also be ordered.
Panini Piazza, a counter-service sandwich cafe next door in the La Piazza district, is likewise open 24/7.
Guests may get traditional deli sandwiches like Reubens and meatball subs, as well as exquisite paninis like the Caprese panini (served hot or cold) and meat-lovers’ options like Carne and Salumeria. After 8 p.m., delicious sweets are offered.
The best part is that both Pizzeria del Capitano and Piazza Panini are completely free.
14. Carnival Mardi Gras Street Food
Street Eats’ Steam Dream is a part of the Street Eats series.
Street Eats is another new eating concept for Carnival Cruise Line, and it’s located on Lido Deck 16 near the Mardi Gras Beach Pool area. Street Eats is a collection of three open-air counter-service booths inspired by food trucks and street eateries: Steam Dream, Mad Sizzle, and Time Fries.
Mad Sizzle offers kebabs and satays, while Steam Dream offers exquisite bao buns and potstickers. Chef-created french fries, such as Cheesesteak Fries, are available at Time Fries.
Street Eats is available for lunch and is free of charge. Menus are always changing. If you like these types of food booths, don’t miss the Seafood Shack’s lobster rolls (available for an additional fee) and the Lido Marketplace’s free shawarma and hot dog stations. The complimentary gelato at the Lido is also a major draw with both youngsters and adults.
15. Live Family Feud
Live Family Feud
It’s only right that Carnival’s brand-new Fun Ship debuts with a thrilling new gaming show. For our trip, Family FeudTM Live debuted on Mardi Gras, and it was a sell-out.
The set for this high-octane event is identical to the one seen on the renowned TV game show. The entertainment experience on our trip was fast-paced and enjoyable thanks to our cruise director and the teams that participated in Family FeudTM Live.
Chibang is number sixteen.
(Photo courtesy of Nancy Schretter)
Another first for Carnival Cruise Line is this innovative restaurant that mixes Chinese and Mexican cuisines. Chibang! is located on Deck 8 and serves breakfast, lunch, and supper.
I wasn’t expecting to be dazzled by this restaurant, yet we ate there twice on our trip.
Build-your-own-bowls are on the lunch menu, while supper is a multi-course event with Chinese and Mexican options. Sweet & Sour Shrimp, Kung Pao Chicken, Steak Ranchero, and Pescado Frito are just a few of the dishes available to mix and match from both sides of the menu.
Despite the fact that this Carnival Mardi Gras speciality restaurant was initially intended to collect a fee, most dishes are now available for free.
The tableside carving of the Golden Roasted Duck for two is well worth the $15 per person up-charge, and the multi-dish entrée is well worth the $15 per person up-charge.
Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse (#17)
Dessert by Art at Your Table
On Mardi Gras, there are more than 20 dining options, making it difficult to squeeze them all into a seven-night trip. On this cruise ship, the Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse is a fantastic dining option, but reservations are required.
This upmarket speciality restaurant is situated on Deck 7 and charges $38 per person for a fantastic four-course dinner that is well worth it.
Baked Onion Soup, Lobster Bisque, Smoked Fresh Oysters, and Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail are among the appetizers, which are followed by a variety of salads. A 14-ounce New York Strip Loin Steak, an 18-ounce Cowboy Steak, Filet Mignon, Surf & Turf, Broiled Lobster Tail, and Grilled Lamb Chops are among the entrees available, which are complemented by a variety of delectable side dishes, sauces, and artisan salts. The desserts are amazing, and the “Art at Your Table” experience is unique, tasty, and entertaining.
BlueIguana Cantina is number 18 on the list.
Mardi Gras at BlueIguana Cantina
On Carnival Mardi Gras’ Deck 16, this poolside Mexican cantina restaurant provides complimentary burritos, tacos, and other scrumptious lunch meals cooked with fish, chicken, or pig. There’s also a fantastic toppings bar here. Breakfast is also served at BlueIguana Cantina, which is a lesser-known treasure. Breakfast burritos with scrambled eggs are a must-try. They’re fantastic!
Punchliner Comedy Club is a comedy club based in New York City. is a 19-year-old comedy club in New York City
Punchliner Comedy Club
Carnival Cruise Line’s Punchliner Comedy Club is well-known, and it’s especially popular during Mardi Gras. There are both family-friendly and adult-only performances aboard the ship.
With many performances provided daily, lineups developed far before showtimes. Throughout the voyage, several of our group’s attendees organized their nights around the Punchliner Comedy Club presentations.
Relaxing in Serenity or the Loft 20.
Loft 19 has Cabanas (Photo courtesy of Nancy Schretter)
On Mardi Gras, the adults-only Serenity Retreat is a beautiful paradise featuring a pool, whirlpool, cushioned loungers and clamshell chairs, the Serenity Bar, and a Fresh Creations salad counter. It’s a relaxing place to hang out with friends.
Loft 19, which is located one level above the main deck and is a beautiful spot for relaxation, is yet another first for a Carnival cruise ship.
On the Carnival Mardi Gras, guests staying in Excel Suites have complimentary access to the exclusive Loft 19 area for the duration of their voyage, as well as first priority for cabana rentals. Plush beach chairs and a massive infinity whirlpool are available at Loft 19, but the area’s 12 five-person cabanas must be booked separately.
If a cabana is available, additional Mardi Gras attendees may buy entrance to Loft 19.
Children under the age of 21 are not permitted in the Serenity area, however they are welcome in Loft 19 with valid access.
Cloud 9 Spa Thermal Suite is number 21 on the list of the best spas in the world.
(Photo credit: Carnival Cruise Line)
If you don’t want to leave the ship or don’t like the sun, getting a Cloud 9 thermal suite pass for the day or week is the best way to spend the day. To relieve tension, there is a mineral pool, heated tile loungers, steam and dry heat chambers, and rainfall showers.
This region is capacity regulated, which means that only a specific number of passes are sold each week until it is declared sold out.
In addition to these 21 “must-do” ideas, a number of visitors suggested that guests book Mardi Gras again. It’s hard to see all this cruise ship has to offer in a single voyage.
Carnival Cruise Line’s new Mardi Gras has so many amazing elements that visitors keep coming back for more.
Carnival Mardi Gras Cruise
READ NEXT: Everything You Need to Know About Loft 19 and Its Cabanas during Mardi Gras
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Carnival Cruise Line is a cruise line that offers cruises to the Caribbean, Mexico and Canada. The “21 Must Do’s While Onboard” are things that you should do while on board the ship. Reference: carnival cruise.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you go on a cruise alone at 21?
A: It depends on your definition of alone but, yes. You could book a cruise that only has one trip per day so you wouldnt be traveling alone from the moment you get to the ship until it leaves in 24 hours later.
What do you do on embarkation day?
A: On embarkation day, I would say that it is better to be calm and collected. It is important not to have your emotions run wild on the first day of a cruise because the ship can give you lots of different things depending on where they are going!
What should you not forget on a cruise?
A: You should not forget an umbrella if it is going to rain, you should also bring enough clothes for the entire duration of your cruise and make sure that they are wrinkle-free.
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