This Once Popular Carnival Cruise Ship Has Almost Gone

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The remains of the Carnival Fascination, a once luxurious and fun-filled cruise ship, have been reduced to an empty hull at the Gadani ship-breaking facility in Pakistan. A recent image of the vessel shows the front of the hull on the beach, with only the bow thrusters remaining visible. 

The ship was beached on February 18, 2022, and workers stripped the vessel of all valuable items in just under a year. Gadani is a ship-breaking yard located on the coast of Pakistan, near the city of Karachi. It is one of the largest ship-breaking yards in the world and deals with decommissioning large vessels, such as cruise ships.

Carnival Fascination is Just an Empty Hull

Sometimes, it really is just the memories that remain. Carnival Fascination was once a fun-filled cruise ship that sailed from Southern Florida to the Caribbean with thousands and thousands of guests onboard over the years. Now she is just an empty shell, sitting on a beach in Pakistan. 

A recent image shows Carnival Fascination, or at least the remains of the hull, sitting on the beach at the Gadani shipyard in Pakistan. The photo shows the bow thrusters just visible above the sand, but other than that, very little remains of the cruise ship.

Scrapped Carnival Fascination Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Eric Topcu

Carnival Fascination was a Fantasy-class cruise ship, measuring 70,367 gross tons and capable of accommodating over 2,000 guests and 920 crew members. It was built at the Helsinki New Shipyard and floated out in 1994. Initially named Fascination, the Carnival prefix was added later as a part of a rebranding program for Carnival Cruise Line.

Since 1994, Carnival Fascination has operated from various Florida ports, with most cruises sailing from Jacksonville. Carnival Cruise Line sold the ship during the global pause in operations in November 2020. 

It was purchased by Chinese cruise operator Century Cruises, which renamed her Century Harmony and intended to use her, in addition to the various river vessels the company has sailing the Yangtze River in China. However, the strict measures in place in China prevented those plans, and ultimately the ship was sold for scrap.

Century Harmony Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Century Cruises

The image of the remains of the Carnival Fascination serves as a reminder of the harsh reality of the ship-breaking industry. The ship-breaking process is a necessary step in the lifecycle of a vessel, although memories of fun-filled vacations onboard remain. 

Carnival Fascination is the only Carnival Cruise Line ship to be broken up as scrap metal in Pakistan. Due to the somewhat questionable practices in Gadani, Carnival has always opted to use the Aliaga breaking yard in Turkey. Because Fascination was sold to a Chinese company, the cruise line had no say in where she would be broken up.

Several Ships Scrapped Since 2020

Since March 2020, several Carnival Cruise Line ships have been sold for scrap. The global pause in operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted the cruise industry, and many companies were forced to sell their older vessels.

The first ship to be sold for scrap was the Carnival Fantasy. The vessel was built in 1990 and was in service for over 30 years before it was sold to the Aliaga ship-breaking yard in Turkey. Both Carnival Imagination and Carnival Inspiration were scrapped in 2020.

Carnival Ecstasy was the last Carnival Cruise Line ship to be scrapped earlier this year. After 31 years and 2,300 cruises, she concluded her final voyage on October 15 and reached the shipbreaking yard in Turkey on November 7. 

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