Port Canaveral’s newest ship, the totally transformed Carnival Sunshine, will depart on its inaugural voyage from the Space Coast when it sails on a special two-day cruise to The Bahamas later today.
Carnival Sunshine will then kick off a year-round schedule of five- to eight-day voyages visiting spectacular destinations throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas and Florida beginning April 19.
Carnival Sunshine is the first ship to feature all of the line’s fantastic Fun Ship 2.0 bar, dining and entertainment innovations which were added during a massive 75-day, $155 million makeover that was the most comprehensive in the company’s history.
Carnival Sunshine continues the line’s nearly 25-year relationship with Port Canaveral while further bolstering its leadership position at the port. Including Carnival Sunshine, along with Carnival Sensation and a third year-round ship launching service next month, Carnival will carry a record 600,000 passengers annually from Port Canaveral – more than any cruise operator. Carnival’s three Port Canaveral-based ships will operate 200 three- to eight-day voyages a year visiting 18 tropical destinations throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas and Florida.
“Not only does Carnival Sunshine bring all of our Fun Ship 2.0 innovations to the Space Coast, it offers a lineup of cruises featuring the greatest diversity of destinations and cruise lengths ever offered from Port Canaveral,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival’s president and CEO. “Central Florida is one of our fastest-growing markets and our continued growth at Port Canaveral would not be possible without the tremendous support from the Canaveral Port Authority, numerous community leaders and many highly valued travel agent partners,” he added.
“Port Canaveral is proud to homeport the latest innovative ship from Carnival Cruise Lines and we look forward to the continuation of this long-time successful partnership,” said Port Canaveral CEO John E. Walsh. “Carnival Sunshine will provide our community with expanded business opportunities and more vacation choices for both our residents and visitors.”
Exciting On-Board Innovations
Carnival Sunshine offers an entirely new seagoing vacation experience from Port Canaveral, with on-board features and facilities catering to guests of all ages and interests.
These include a tantalizing variety of dining options – from casual favorites like Guy’s Burger Joint, developed in partnership with Food Network star Guy Fieri; the Cucina del Capitano family-style Italian eatery and Ji Ji Asian Kitchen to Fahrenheit 555, a reservations-only steakhouse serving gourmet cuisine in an intimate and elegant setting. Guests can also check out the full-service Bonsai Sushi, the 24-hour Pizzeria del Capitano, Lido Marketplace offering an array of international cuisines and only-on-Sunshine choices like ShakeSpot and JavaBlue Café.
And while the youngsters are enjoying fun, supervised activities and play areas designed for three age groups, grown-ups can relax and get some “me” time at Serenity, a stunning three-level adults-only retreat featuring its own pool, a waterfall, oversized umbrellas and comfortable chaise lounges.
Other popular features include the poolside RedFrog Rum Bar, BlueIguana Tequila Bar and Blue Iguana Cantina, along with top-deck attractions such as WaterWorks, featuring a 334-foot-long Twister water slide – the longest in the fleet – and SportSquare, an outdoor recreation area highlighted by a suspended ropes course offering breathtaking views of the sea 150 feet below.
Entertainment offerings include the high-energy Playlist Productions revues; the family-friendly Hasbro, The Game Show, with larger-than-life adaptations of the brand’s popular games; and hilarious performances at the Punchliner Comedy Club presented by George Lopez, a partnership with the popular comedian and TV personality offering dozens of adult-oriented and all-ages comedy shows each voyage.
Port-Intensive Caribbean Itineraries
Carnival Sunshine will operate three different five-day eastern Caribbean sailings departing Sundays and featuring calls at Key West, Nassau, and Freeport; Nassau and Grand Turk; or Nassau, Half Moon Cay and Freeport.
Port-intensive seven-day cruises depart Saturdays to the eastern Caribbean and call at Nassau, St. Thomas, San Juan and Grand Turk, while week-long western Caribbean trips depart Saturdays and call at Cozumel, Belize, Mahogany Bay (Isla Roatan); and Costa Maya.
Two different eight-day eastern Caribbean cruises depart Fridays or Saturdays, and call at Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas and St. Maarten; or Grand Turk, St. Thomas, Tortola and St. Maarten. Eight-day southern Caribbean sailings depart Fridays or Saturdays and include Curaçao, Aruba and Grand Turk.