Cruise lines are well known for their endless eats. On Carnival Cruise Line, each ship offers a variety of delicious dining options included in your cruise fare, from the great variety of the Lido buffet restaurants to the gourmet menus in the main dining rooms to extra snacks through room service, pizzerias, delis, ice cream machines and more.

While you can dine quite sumptuously on a Carnival ship without ever spending extra on food, there are a number of delicious options you may want to consider spending a little more to enjoy.

Why Pay More for Food?

With so many free dining options available onboard Carnival ships, why would passengers want to spend more money on dining extras? While the free dining options are delicious, there are exclusive extras available only from the extra-charge dining venues.

Couples who want a romantic dinner, for example, may prefer to pay for a restaurant that offers a more intimate atmosphere than the large dining rooms, and where they can be assured of getting a private table instead of being grouped with tablemates.

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Specialty restaurants often offer exclusive menu options that aren’t available elsewhere on the ship, and may even incorporate local flavors to represent ports of call along the itinerary. Portions may be more generous, and the food quality could be superior even to the already excellent options available elsewhere on board.

Some extra venues also feature different experiences, such as cooking demonstrations, exclusive wine pairings or even the opportunity to dine with the ship’s captain or another high-ranking officer.

The exact restaurants available vary on each Carnival Cruise ship, and different venues charge differently. Some feature a per-person surcharge regardless of the menu choices, while others have a-la-carte pricing that depends on each individual selection.

Payments are charged to the dining passenger’s sail and sign account, however, so there is no need to worry about other forms of payment when indulging in these delicious options.

Also Read: Free Carnival Cruise Dining Options

Carnival Horizon Steakhouse
Photo By: Russell Otway

Extra Tastiness Worth Paying for on a Carnival Cruise

Every Carnival ship has at least a few dining options that may cost a little more, but are well worth the fee for their deliciousness.

Cucina del Capitano – This restaurant serves a homestyle dinner menu that blends Italian and American cuisine. Meals are served family-style, and while reservations are not required, they are recommended.

Bonsai Teppanyaki – This intimate, interactive restaurant features Asian fusion cuisine for lunch and dinner. Seafood, meat and tofu options are available, and meals are accompanied by a cooking show.

JiJi Asian Kitchen – A range of Asian menu options are available for dinner at this delicious venue with its restful Asian décor. The full service menu also includes amazing drink options to enhance each meal.

Steakhouse – Most Carnival ships include an elegant steakhouse featuring surf and turf options, appetizers, salads, sides and desserts, along with an extensive wine list. Reservations are recommended.

Seafood Shack – Enjoy the fresh catch of the day for lunch or dinner at this fun New England-themed venue, pleasantly positioned so you can always see the sea while you enjoy your lunch or dinner.

Bonsai Sushi – Enjoy your favorite sushi, sashimi, sake and other delectable tastes for lunch or dinner at this fun venue with its counter seating so you can watch each bite as it is expertly prepared.

Chef’s Table – The ultimate in cruise ship dining, this guided dinner is a very intimate experience that features a gallery tour, expertly paired wines and an exclusive menu as part of the culinary event.

JavaBlue Café – Get your caffeine fix with hot and cold drinks at this exclusive coffee bar, where you can opt to indulge in luxurious desserts such as tarts, cookies and cakes at the same time.

Shake Spot – Nothing says vacation fun like indulging in a handcrafted shake or float. From classic tastes to tropical creations to adults-only spiked treats, this venue will shake up your taste buds.

Guy’s Pig & Anchor BBQ Smokehouse | Brewhouse – Richly smoked meats, classic sides and delicious homebrews are on the menu at the smokehouse, exclusively on Carnival Horizon and coming soon to Carnival Panorama.

Late Night Room Service – If you’re feeling snacky after hours, Carnival’s late night room service menu can cope with all your cravings, including specialty salads, wings, pizza, sandwiches and desserts.

No matter what tastes you prefer or what your budget may be, there are delicious options waiting on your next Carnival Cruise!

We've got some great cruise tips for Carnival cruise dining options worth paying for.
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