When a cruise line has around 24 ships in the fleet with even more on order or being constructed, it can be easy to lose track. Carnival Cruise Line is the largest cruise line in the world, and there are several different class ships with each being built and joining the fleet at different times. We’re going to keep track of the Carnival ships by age, so you don’t have to.
Which is the Newest Carnival Cruise Ship?
The very first Carnival cruise ship was the Mardi Gras, she wasn’t built for the cruise line but was the first ship for the newly formed Ted Arison Carnival Cruise Line at the time. The ship started sailing for Carnival in 1972 and ever since the “Fun Ships” have kept coming! Mardi Grad was over 27,200 gross tons which is a huge difference from the current newest ships in the fleet which is Carnival Panorama at 135,000 gross tons.
However, Carnival Panorama which joined the fleet at the end of 2019 will be the final ship in the Vista-class and the new Excel-class ships will take the cruise line into a new era. The larger cruise ships will start with Mardi Gras in February 2021 and then another sister ship named Carnival Celebration in 2022, they will both be over 180,000 gross tons.
We’ve already put together a list of the smallest to the largest Carnival cruise ships which you can take a look at here.
Carnival Cruise Ships by Age
- 2022 – Carnival Celebration (Excel-class)
- 2021 – Mardi Gras (Excel-class)
- 2019 – Carnival Panorama (Vista-class)
- 2018 – Carnival Horizon (Vista-class)
- 2016 – Carnival Vista (Vista-class)
- 2012 – Carnival Breeze (Dream-class)
- 2011 – Carnival Magic (Dream-class)
- 2009 – Carnival Dream (Dream-class)
- 2008 – Carnival Splendor (Splendor-class)
- 2007 – Carnival Freedom (Conquest-class)
- 2005 – Carnival Liberty (Conquest-class)
- 2004 – Carnival Valor (Conquest-class)
- 2004 – Carnival Miracle (Spirit-class)
- 2003 – Carnival Glory (Conquest-class)
- 2002 – Carnival Conquest (Conquest-class)
- 2002 – Carnival Legend (Spirit-class)
- 2002 – Carnival Pride (Spirit-class)
- 2001 – Carnival Spirit (Spirit-class)
- 2000 – Carnival Victory (Transformed to Carnival Radiance in 2020)
- 1999 – Carnival Triumph (Transformed to Carnival Sunrise in 2019)
- 1998 – Carnival Paradise (Fantasy-class)
- 1998 – Carnival Elation (Fantasy-class)
- 1996 – Carnival Sunshine (Transformed from Carnival Destiny in 2013)
- 1994 – Carnival Fascination (Fantasy-class)
- 1993 – Carnival Sensation (Fantasy-class)
- 1991 – Carnival Ecstasy (Fantasy-class)
Older Carnival Ships
Carnival Cruise Line goes back beyond the older Fantasy-class vessels such as the Holiday-class and more. The very first was Mardi Gras which we already mentioned further up, then came Carnivale which is, in fact, the oldest built ship. She didn’t start sailing for Carnival Cruise Line until 1975.
Festivale was built in 1962 but joined the fleet in 1977. Tropical was the first new cruise ship built for Carnival Cruise Line in 1982. The new Holiday-class vessel also built for the cruise line helped grow the Fun ship fleet with Holiday arriving in 1985, Jubilee in 1986, and Celebration in 1987.
Here’s the list of the former ships which have either been sold to other operators or scrapped:
- 1996 – Carnival Inspiration (Fantasy-class)
- 1994 – Carnival Imagination (Fantasy-class)
- 1990 – Carnival Fantasy (Fantasy-class)
- 1987 – Celebration (Holiday-class)
- 1986 – Jubilee (Holiday-class)
- 1985 – Holiday (Holiday-class)
- 1982 – Tropicale
- 1977 – Festivale
- 1975 – Carnivale
- 1972 – Mardi Gras
We look forward to the future Carnival cruise ships with the new era of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) powered ships entering service. These new generation ships will grow Carnival even further bringing new features and innovation to the cruise vacation experience.