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Carnival Panorama Review

Find a Carnival Panorama Cruise from A$613

Carnival Panorama
4.5 / 5.0
71 reviews

West Coast-based ship; plenty of free activities and dining options
Noisy; service can be hit or miss
Bottom Line
A fantastic value for families and groups




Passenger to Crew


Shore Excursions
Sails To
Mexican Riviera
Sails From
Carnival Cruise Deals
Dori Saltzman
Cruise Critic Contributor

Carnival Panorama Overview

If you're looking for a cruise ship that's big and diverse enough to keep even the most active person happy, it's hard to do better than Carnival Panorama.

The third vessel in Carnival's popular Vista Class of ships, 4,008-passenger Carnival Panorama has something for everyone. Kids will love the gigantic water slides and water park that take up a significant chunk of top-deck real estate. Couples looking to escape the crowds will find a haven on the adults-only Serenity sun deck. Thrill-seekers will enjoy the SkyRide, the SkyCourse and -- new to Carnival -- the SkyZone trampoline park. Add in the constant stream of activities around the ship, most of them free, and you'll see how Carnival Panorama delivers on value.

Also new for a Carnival ship -- and already one of the most popular activities onboard -- is Carnival Kitchen, a dedicated space for cooking classes. There, you can learn to make the line's signature warm chocolate melting cake from scratch or how to cook tasty Indian dishes. The classes are fun, not at all pretentious, and you get to eat what you make.

Foodies will also appreciate all the specialty restaurants, particularly some standout pan-Asian offerings. But what's particularly great about Carnival Panorama is you don't have to shell out money to have a tasty meal. There are plenty of included restaurants, and while service in the main dining room leaves something to be desired, the food is generally yummy.

What Carnival Panorama is not is quiet. The flow of passengers works well -- we rarely encountered bottlenecks or crowds, even at full capacity -- but there's a lot of banging around and noise within the hallways. That's partly due to the sheer breadth of passengers, from kids who wake up early with energy to burn to party-hearty types who stumble home late from the bars. (Walls and ceilings have little soundproofing, so you hear it all.)

Still, Carnival Panorama shows that the line's ships have much more to offer beyond late-night revelry (although there's plenty of that). It's a fantastic ship for families, as well as groups of friends or celebratory events, such as birthdays or reunions. On your cruise, you'll see groups wearing matching T-shirts or hats that are bound to make you smile (even though we predict you were smiling already). You have to work to not have fun onboard.

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Included with your cruise fare:

  • Meals in the main dining room and buffet, and at Pizzeria del Capitano, Guy's Burger Joint, BlueIguana Cantina; also select room service items and lunches in some specialty venues
  • Shows in the main theater and the Punchliner Comedy Club, deck parties and live music around the ship
  • Use of the Carnival WaterWorks splash park and waterslides, SkyCourse (ropes course), SkyRide, SportsSquare (including mini-golf) and the Sports Court 
  • Use of the fitness center, excluding classes and personal training
  • Most daily activities, unless otherwise noted
  • Access to the adults-only Serenity sun deck area
  • Movies at the poolside Carnival Seaside Theater
  • Use of Carnival's Camp Ocean kids club until 10 p.m. for children aged 2 to 17 

Not included with your cruise fare:

  • Daily gratuities ($13.99 per person, per day, in standard staterooms; $15.99 per person, per day, for those in suites)
  • Automatic gratuity on beverage purchases, as well as spa and salon treatments (18 percent for both)
  • All drinks with the exception of water, tea, coffee and select juices in the buffet
  • Select room service items, plus pizza delivery ($5)
  • Entry to the SkyZone trampoline park
  • Meals in most specialty restaurants
  • Use of the thermal suite and thalassotherapy pool in the Cloud 9 Spa
  • All spa treatments, along with most fitness classes and personal training
  • Specialty coffee
  • Shore excursions
  • Wi-Fi Packages
  • Casino play
  • Activities like Carnival Kitchen cooking classes, bingo, liquor and wine tastings, and Build-A-Bear workshops
  • Arcade games
  • Photos, portraits and artwork 
  • Purchases from onboard shops
  • After-hours babysitting in the Camp Ocean Kids Club

Top Carnival Panorama Itineraries

Carnival Panorama
8 day mexican riviera cruise

Los Angeles, Cabo San Lucas, Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta, Los Angeles

8 Day Mexican Riviera Cruise

Carnival Panorama

View All Carnival Panorama Itineraries (3)

Fellow Passengers

With its Long Beach homeport, Carnival Panorama draws a large number of passengers from California, as well as nearby states, including Arizona and Nevada. Expect a large number of families in the summer months and during holidays. Big groups of friends and families also find the ship a draw.

Carnival Panorama Dress Code

Daytime: Casual is just fine on Carnival Panorama, and during the day you'll see all kinds of T-shirts, shorts, sundresses and bathing suits with cover-ups. You'll want to pack according to the climate and bring appropriate clothes and gear for shore excursions and other activities. Note that even in the Lido buffet, shirts, bathing suit cover-ups and footwear must be worn.

Evening: There are two evening dress codes on Carnival Panorama: "cruise casual" and "cruise elegant." On casual nights, men will want to wear longer dress shorts or pants -- jeans are OK -- and a collared shirt. Women can wear sundresses, skirts and tops, dress shorts and capris.

Cruise Elegant nights, of which there are usually two on a seven night cruise, calls for a slightly fancier outfit, such as dress slacks and dress shirts for men and dresses, fancy blouses and pants or skirts for women. You'll see some people going all out in long gowns or a suit, but that's the exception, not the norm.

Not permitted: Flip-flops, sleeveless shirts (for men), cut-off jeans, T-shirts and gym shorts are not permitted in the dining room.

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

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Carnival Panorama Ratings

Public Rooms4.04.2
Fitness Recreation4.04.2
Value For Money5.04

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More about Carnival Panorama

Where does Carnival Panorama sail from?

Carnival Panorama departs from Los Angeles

Where does Carnival Panorama sail to?

Carnival Panorama cruises to Los Angeles, Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta and Ensenada

How much does it cost to go on Carnival Panorama?

Cruises on Carnival Panorama start from A$613 per person.

Awards and Recognition

Carnival Panorama Member Reviews

Carnival Panorama
Sail Date: Jan 2020
Carnival stressed that the Panorama was the line's flagship, and it was readily apparent in the level of service we experienced. Dining.... Read More
Carnival Panorama
Sail Date: Feb 2020
It follows the Carnival layout for the most part. However, for those of us who need accessibility features, Panorama is vastly better than its predecessors.... Read More
Carnival Panorama
Sail Date: Feb 2020
After 15 Carnival Cruises (since the 1990's), I think I am really done with Carnival for a long time. The Panorama crew and their service was impeccable and personable.... Read More
Carnival Panorama
Sail Date: Feb 2020
We still meet the Panorama staff and some very nice cruisers. I certainly would said again on the Panorama, especially with this crew.... Read More

Carnival Cruise Line Fleet

Carnival Ecstasy
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

1118 reviews

Fun and friendly with a laid-back vibe; highlights include waterslides, a singalong piano bar, nightly Punchliner Comedy Club and mini-golf; carries some 2,500.

Carnival Ecstasy Cruises to the Bahamas View All Carnival Ecstasy Cruises
Carnival Elation
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Elation is the seventh of Carnival's eight Fantasy-class vessels (debuting in 1998), and went through a significant upgrade in 2009.

Carnival Fantasy
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Carnival Fantasy may be the oldest vessel in the Carnival fleet, but it certainly has style, and a warm and friendly atmosphere.

Carnival Fascination
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

The 2,052-passenger Carnival Fascination debuted in 1994 and went through a significant upgrade to public areas, top-deck spaces and cabins in 2010.

Carnival Imagination
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Fun and friendly with plenty to do from sunup to sundown including high-energy pool deck fun and stage shows, plus waterslides, mini-golf and more.

Carnival Inspiration
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

A smaller ship packed with energetic fun all day long; highlights include nightly comedy, enthusiastic karaoke, waterslides, mini-golf and 10 bars and lounges.

Carnival Paradise
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Smaller ship with a fun and family-friendly atmosphere: highlights include short warm-weather itineraries, a waterslide and mini-golf; carries about 2,500 people.

Carnival Sensation
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Fun, friendly vibe with a packed lineup of daily activities, nightly comedy, energetic stage shows, silly pool deck fun, and a multi-slide waterpark.

Carnival Victory
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Fewer attractions than other Carnival ships but only offers short sailings; highlights are the comedy club, four pools and water slide; about 3,000 passengers.

Carnival Spirit
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Family-friendly, 2,100-passenger ship, based full-time in Sydney, has the Green Thunder water slide, great dining, free poolside food, lively entertainment and fun crew.

Carnival Pride

Lively and fun with a dizzying art-through-the-centuries decor, nightly standup comedy, two waterslides, four pools, and lots of bars and lounges; can carry about 2,500.

Carnival Legend
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

More than 2,600 passengers can enjoy the Green Thunder slide, Serenity Retreat for adults, Playlist Production music shows and excellent kids activities.

Carnival Conquest
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Unpretentious vibe with pool-centric fun and water slide, plus Hairy Chest and Mr. and Mrs. Conquest contests; also 11 bars and 9 eateries; carries about 3,500.

Carnival Glory

Lively entertainment and activities include nightly stand-up comedy, high-energy Playlist Production stage shows, twister water slide, and a nonstop schedule of daily activities.

Carnival Miracle

Fun, family-friendly ship focused on Carnival signatures like the high-energy Playlist Production shows, nightly comedy, RedFrog Pub and line dancing deck parties.

Carnival Valor
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Silly poolside games, piano bar sing-alongs and PG- and R-rated stand-up comedy give this smallish mega-ship its fun vibe; also features the RedFrog Pub.

Carnival Liberty
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Fun, friendly vibe focusing on Carnival signatures like the Punchliner Comedy Club, gut-busting Guy's Burger Joint and cocktail-focused Alchemy Bar; holds about 3,500.

Carnival Freedom

Fun, laid-back and friendly; highlights include nightly comedy, high-energy stage shows, twister water slide and the popular RedFrog Pub; holds about 3,500.

Carnival Splendor
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Can hold upward of 4,000 passengers; features indoor/outdoor pool with retractable dome, Twister water slide, mini-golf and just one extra-fee restaurant.

Carnival Dream

Fun, friendly vibe; features Guy Fieri's Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse, family-friendly and adult stand-up comedy, nightly karaoke, water park and mini-golf.

Carnival Magic
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Holds about 4,000; highlights include water slides, the RedFrog Pub, two-bathroom family cabins that hold up to five, a ropes course and Carnival's signature fun.

Carnival Breeze

Nonstop activities and attractions include top deck water park and ropes course, 4D Thrill Theater and nightly standup comedy; can hold up to 4,700 cruisers.

Carnival Sunshine

Fun and friendly with nightly stand-up comedy and short, energetic stage shows, plus a calorie-packed burger joint from celeb chef Guy Fieri; holds about 3,500.

Carnival Vista

Holds a bit more than 4,000 passengers; offers a waterpark, suspended-in-midair recumbent bike thrill ride, ropes course and the first IMAX cinema at sea.

Carnival Horizon
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Carnival's newest megaship, holding some 4,000 passengers, launches April 2018; highlights include new barbeque/brewery and Teppanyaki restaurants, an IMAX movie theater, waterpark, beer brewery and ropes course.

Carnival Sunrise
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

A completely reimagined ship, Carnival Sunrise is Carnival Triumph transformed with new venues, entertainment options, and a whole new Fun Ship look.

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