And that is the brilliance of the latest Vista-class ship from Carnival — launched this week in the Med — the vast liner has fun for all AND the chance to escape and relax.

If you fancy full-on, high-octane thrills, take to the two waterslides, climb aboard the SkyRide to pedal your way around the top of the ship or scare yourself silly with the IMAX theatre 3D shows.

The main Lido Deck — complete with pool, Seaside Theatre, two poolside bars and fantastic Guy’s Burger Joint and Blue Iguana Cantina — is a big, brash party spot 24/7, complete with hundreds of loungers and chairs.

No matter the time of day or night, you can find a spot for a bit of calm, relaxed chilling.

The Serenity Deck is your go-to in the day, as well as the Tides Pool, complete with New England-inspired Seafood Shack and fresh slices from Pizzeria Del Capitano.

For full-on zen there is the Cloud 9 Spa, with a thalassotherapy pool, sauna, steam room and hammam. And as night falls, the choices just get better.

Grab a free box of popcorn and watch a movie under the stars.

Take in a show at the Liquid Lounge or comedy at the Limelight Lounge.

The Havana Bar at the back of the ship — open to passengers who book the special cabins complete with their own pool and balconies right on the promenade — is a Cuban-inspired spot with live music after dark.

The ship’s atrium, with its stunning LED sculpture, is perfect for parties, with the ship’s ever-bouncy Cruise Director leading the celebrations.

The Alchemy Bar midship is THE place for cocktails.

I enjoyed rather too many of the French Kiss concoction.

And while families can enjoy Hasbro: The Game Show, bringing to life beloved board games, parents might find it difficult to tempt their little ’uns away from the kids’ clubs.

There is a nightclub for teens too.

Carnival Horizon is virtually identical to its sister ship Vista, launched in 2014.

But the little tweaks here and there really mark it out.

The kids’ water park is now Dr Seuss-themed, complete with a 3,000-gallon Cat’s Hat tipping bucket.

The other major change is in the Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse — while it still brews its own beer, there’s also the chance to sample BBQ favourites from celeb chef Guy Fieri.

The Southern-inspired dishes include 12-hour smoked brisket and will be free at lunchtime on embarkation and sea days as well as a la carte for a few dollars extra at night.

Horizon also gets Carnival’s first Teppanyaki venue for superb Japanese food complete with hilarious chefs performing as they cook.

This is perfect for fun-loving families but the two lovely Irish ladies I met on embarkation in Barcelona were having just as much fun when I bumped into them later in the cruise.

After two more Med cruises, Horizon heads to New York and then Miami where, from this winter, it will offer Caribbean cruises.

The ship may be very American but with that comes superb food, fabulous service and so much fun.


Based on November 25 departure. Call 0808 234 0680 or visit

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