Carnival Ships by Size and Age

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Carnival Mardi Gras Rendering sailing in open ocean ariel view

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Welcome aboard our voyage through the Carnival Cruise Line’s Fleet. Carnival has long been a favorite for its family-friendly atmosphere and budget-friendly options. Whether you’re planning your first sea adventure or a seasoned sailor of the high seas, understanding the diverse fleet of Carnival’s ships can help tailor your perfect cruise experience.

Carnival ships are famous for their signature red, white, and blue whale tail funnel, a symbol of fun and excitement on the open sea. This iconic design marks the ships’ distinctive profile and encapsulates the essence of Carnival’s brand—a world of fun, sun, and exploration.

In this blog post, we’ll navigate the waves of choices within the Carnival fleet. We’ll compare Carnival ships by size, age, and class to help you select the best one for your next cruise vacation.

Carnival Ships by Size

A view of the port side of Carnival Spirit sailing through Juneau Alaska with trees and mountains in the backgroundPin

Carnival’s fleet offers a variety of sizes catering to different passenger preferences, from those seeking an intimate experience to a thrill-packed city at sea with endless activities.

Larger Carnival cruise ships have more things to do, while smaller vessels offer a more relaxed and laid-back experience.

Below is a comprehensive guide to Carnival Cruise Line’s ships, categorized by size.

Ship NameClassGross TonnageLengthPassengers
Carnival CelebrationExcel183,900 GT344 m5,374
Mardi GrasExcel183,900 GT344 m5,282
Carnival JubileeExcel183,900 GT344 m5,347
Carnival FirenzeVista135,225 GT324 m4,232
Carnival VeneziaVista135,225 GT324 m4,232
Carnival HorizonVista133,500 GT322 m3,960
Carnival VistaVista133,500 GT322 m3,934
Carnival PanoramaVista133,500 GT322 m3,930
Carnival DreamDream128,251 GT305 m3,646
Carnival BreezeDream128,052 GT306 m3,690
Carnival MagicDream128,048 GT305 m3,690
Carnival SplendorConcordia113,573 GT290 m3,016
Carnival FreedomConquest110,320 GT289 m2,984
Carnival LibertyConquest110,320 GT290 m2,978
Carnival GloryConquest110,239 GT290 m2,984
Carnival ConquestConquest110,239 GT290 m2,984
Carnival ValorConquest110,239 GT290 m2,984
Carnival SunshineSunshine103,881 GT272 m3,002
Carnival RadianceSunshine101,509 GT272 m2,896
Carnival SunriseSunshine101,509 GT272 m2,984
Carnival Luminosaluminosa92,720 GT294 m2,260
Carnival SpiritSpirit88,500 GT292 m2,124
Carnival MiracleSpirit88,500 GT292 m2,124
Carnival LegendSpirit88,500 GT292 m2,124
Carnival PrideSpirit85,920 GT292 m2,124
Carnival ParadiseFantasy71,925 GT262 m2,124
Carnival ElationFantasy71,909 GT260 m2,188

List of Carnival Ships by Age

The Bolt Roller coaster and Carnival Cruise Line’s signature whale tale funnel visible on the Carnival Celebration cruise ship while docked at San Juan, Puerto RicoPin

The ship’s age is an essential factor when planning your cruise vacation. Newer cruise ships, like Carnival Jubilee, offer newer technology, better amenities, more activities, and a broader range of entertainment options. In contrast, older vessels, like Carnival Spirit, are quieter and focus more on traditional cruise activities.

The table below shows Carnival’s cruise ships from newest to oldest.

Ship NameClassYear BuiltBuilder
Carnival JubileeExcel2023Meyer Werft (Papenburg, Germany)
Carnival CelebrationExcel2022Meyer Werft (Turku, Finland)
Carnival FirenzeVista2021Fincantieri (Marghera, Italy)
Mardi GrasExcel2021Meyer Werft (Turku, Finland)
Carnival VeneziaVista2019Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival PanoramaVista2019Fincantieri (Marghera, Italy)
Carnival HorizonVista2018Fincantieri (Marghera, Italy)
Carnival VistaVista2016Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival BreezeDream2012Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival MagicDream2011Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival DreamDream2009Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival Luminosaluminosa2009Fincantieri (Marghera, Italy)
Carnival SplendorConcordia2008Fincantieri (Sestri Ponente, Genoa Italy)
Carnival FreedomConquest2007Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival LibertyConquest2005Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival MiracleSpirit2004Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival ValorConquest2004Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival GloryConquest2003Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival LegendSpirit2002Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival ConquestConquest2002Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival PrideSpirit2001Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival SpiritSpirit2001Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival RadianceSunshine2000Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival SunriseSunshine1999Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)
Carnival ParadiseFantasy1998Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival ElationFantasy1998Kvaerner Masa-Yards (Helsinki, STX Finland)
Carnival SunshineSunshine1996Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)

Although the cruise ships at the bottom of the list are very old, they receive regular refurbishments every three to five years. So, even if you aren’t sailing on the newest vessel, the ship won’t show its age.

Carnival Cruise Ship Classes

Carnival Liberty departing Port of Miami in FloridaPin
(Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line)

Carnival Cruise Line has eight cruise ship classes.

ClassGross Tonnage (GT)
Excel Class180,000 GT
Vista Class133,500 GT
Dream Class130,000 GT
Splendor Class113,300 GT
Conquest Class110,000 GT
Sunshine Class102,000 GT
Sprit Class88,500 GT
Fantasy Class70,367 GT

Carnival Cruise Ships on Order

Carnival Cruise Line currently has one unnamed Excel-class ship on order. We’re expecting Carnival’s fourth Excel-class ship to arrive in 2027 and be identical in size to the previous Excel cruise ships.

The 180,000 gross-ton cruise ship will be powered by liquified natural gas (LNG) and is under construction at the Meyer-Werft shipyard in Germany.

FAQs

Which Carnival Cruise Ship is the Biggest?

The biggest Carnival cruise ship is the Carnival Jubilee. The Excel-class cruise ship has a gross tonnage of 183,900 GT, a length of 344 meters, and can accommodate 5,374 passengers.

Which Carnival Cruise Ship is the Smallest?

Carnival’s smallest cruise ship is the Carnival Elation, which has a gross tonnage of 71,909 GT, a length of 260 meters, and a 2,188-passenger capacity.

What is the Newest Carnival Ship?

Carnival’s newest cruise ship is the Carnival Firenze, which entered service for the cruise line in 2024. Firenze was built in 2021 for Carnival’s sister brand, Costa Cruises. Carnival acquired the cruise ship, and it entered service in 2024.

What is the Oldest Carnival Ship?

The oldest Carnival ship is the Carnival Sunshine, which launched in 1996.

How Many Cruise Ships Does Carnival Have?

Carnival operates the largest ocean cruise ship fleet with 27 cruise ships.

What Was the First Carnival Cruise Ship?

Carnival's first cruise ship Mardi Gras moored at Montreal on August 28, 1979Pin

The first Carnival Cruise ship was the TSS Mardi Gras.

The vessel (named RMS Empress of Canada at the time) was built for Canadian Pacific Steamships Ltd. in 1960 before being bought by the newly formed Ted Arison Carnival Cruise Line.

Empress of Canada was a little over 27,000 gross tons, a considerable difference from the 180,000 Excel-class ships.

Article by

Marcello De Lio

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