Cruise Ships

Carnival Has Exciting News For Mid-Atlantic Home Ports

For the longest time, people who lived in the Mid-Atlantic states in the US got left out when it came to cruising. If you wanted to go on the latest or greatest cruise ship in the US, you typically had to fly to the southern ports like Miami or Fort Lauderdale. Occasionally, a newer or bigger ship would come up for a season or two, but your choices were severely limited in the North East and Mid-Atlantic. Thankfully, Carnival has some exciting news that will change that for guests in the New York and Virginia regions.  

New York is getting the Carnival Venezia

Back in June, Carnival announced that it’d be borrowing two of its sister company’s ships; the Costa Venezia and Costa Firenze. They call the program “Costa by Carnival,” which tries to combine the look and feel of the Costa ship with the Carnival staples attractions and features. 

carnival venezia ship

Yesterday, Carnival announced the sailings for the Venezia. It will homeport in New York City starting on June 15, 2023 and will offer 22 different itineraries. It will also sail year-round from New York, giving those in the area a lot of choices of when to cruise. 

During the summer, the Venezia will alternate between 4, 5, 6, and 8-day sailings visiting popular ports in the Caribbean, Bermuda, and Canada. Then in September 2023, it will switch to 8 and 12-day cruises to the Eastern Caribbean and Southern Caribbean with stops like St. Thomas, San Juan, and Aruba. 

Carnival Venezia Italian Themed Atrium
The Carnival Venezia gets rid of the large LED funnel found on Carnival’s Vista-class ships and goes for an Italian flare

This news is exciting because the Venezia is a newer ship. It’s technically a Vista-class ship, so it’s generally similar to the Vista, Horizon, and Panorama. The North East never really got to enjoy these ships, so now it introduces a whole new class of ship to the region. 

That being said, we haven’t yet seen what “Costa by Carnival” really means. Current deck plans don’t show staples like the Alchemy Bar, Guy’s Burgers, or Blue Iguana Cantina. They may be added in the future, as the deck plans are not yet finalized, but it’s hard to book a cruise not knowing what you’re in for. 

If you want to see the sailings, visit Carnival’s website.

Norfolk gets the Carnival Magic for half the year

While Carnival has been sailing from Norfolk since 2002, it was typically the older and smaller ships in the fleet. Then, back in May, Carnival brought in the Carnival Magic to become the largest ship to embark guests from that port. 

New Hull Design for Carnival Magic
Carnival Magic was the biggest ship to sail out of Norfolk

The Magic would sail during the spring and summer but split that time between New York and Norfolk, limiting the number of sailings. Since the Venezia will be homeporting in New York, Carnival decided to move the Magic down to Norfolk for a full six months a year. 

The Magic will sail four- to ten-day itineraries to the Eastern Caribbean, Bermuda, Canada, and New England. 

While the Magic isn’t the newest or largest in the Carnival fleet, it’s part of the Dream-class that is a favorite of many. Its large but not imposing size and variety of restaurants and attractions make it a solid option for cruisers. 

Carnival Magic Lido Deck Area

Carnival has proposed a full-year cruise program for Norfolk starting in 2025. As part of that initiative, they discussed with local leaders the optimizations and improvements they’d need at the Half Moone Cruise Center to accommodate this extra traffic.

Learn more about the Carnival Magic sailings out of Norfolk on the Carnival website.

CruiseSpotlight is an Amazon Associate. We may earn a commission when you click links to retailers and purchase goods.

Randy Young

Randy Young is the founder and editor-in-chief at Cruise Spotlight. He has been in marketing for 19 years and has been cruising for just as long. Over the years, he's worked with products like TVs, copiers, light bulbs, and EV chargers, but cruising has always been his passion. There's nothing Randy likes more than the first couple of hours on a ship, exploring every nook and cranny and seeing how it's different from everything else out there. He's known for providing detailed and analytical coverage of cruising to help cruisers get a comprehensive picture of a ship's offerings.