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Carnival Magic Photo Review: June 16-23rd Eastern Route

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Thank you for doing a review, looking forward to sailing on the Magic in .....570 days ;p

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Following. On the Magic in April 2020 for my 50th Anniversary.

 

Great review and pics! On the Magic on July 21 and can't wait to sail on her again! ������

 

Thank you for doing a review, looking forward to sailing on the Magic in .....570 days ;p

 

Thank you all for reading along, I appreciate it! Let me know if you have any questions as you prepare for your journeys!

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following....great review and awesome pics!!

 

Thanks so much, I hope you enjoy!

 

Did the Magic have the new lamps with the cell phone charger built in to them?

Our room did not have that, sorry I can't provide a better answer.

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Just saw your review, and I'm subscribing. Thanks for sharing your vacation with us, and I just love the pictures.

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Following along- I'm trying to talk my DH into same ship/itinerary sailing out of Miami in March!

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June 19, 2018- San Juan, Puerto Rico

 

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We finally get to get off the ship! Alright so it wasn't that bad, but it was really nice to finally be at a port after a second unexpected day at sea. It was our first time in San Juan and we were very excited to be there. We were supposed to have visited on our Vista honeymoon sailing in November 2017, but due to the slew of hurricanes that went through the Caribbean, our Eastern route was switched to a Southern. We had to cancel our tour at the Bacardi factory and we were bummed. After that all happened, we had to decide if we wanted to stick with our original plans to visit the forts and walk around San Juan or reschedule our Bacardi visit for this trip. We ultimately made the decision to stick with the plan of seeing the forts since that's more important to understanding and experiencing San Juan. We would definitely like to see the Bacardi factory in the future though, so it's still on the to-do list!

 

We woke up at 7:45, which is pretty late considering we could get off the ship at 8:15. We knew the forts didn't even open until 9am so there wasn't a huge rush to get off with the massive crowd that might be leaving the ship.We packed our day bag and headed to the Lido for breakfast. Unfortunately it was a lot more packed than the day before and the lines were long, but it moved pretty quickly. We also joked about being able to enjoy a meal without the room shaking. For some reason, the aft of the Lido Marketplace really shakes when the ship is in motion, so it was nice and still since the ship was docked. The ice and drink machine have to be on the verge of breaking from rattling so hard, and there's one particular light that also shook terribly and seemed like it was going to fall off the ceiling at any moment.

 

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Our ship buddy for the day enhance

 

We headed down to deck 0 gangway to get off the ship. We were super excited to finally be in San Juan!! The pier and terminal were very plain and didn't have a lot going on in it, such as a lot of store fronts being empty and/or closed. We got to the street and were able to use Google Maps to help us find Castillo de San Cristóbal. I like to pride myself on doing a lot of research for cruises, but I apparently didn't do enough since I had some issues knowing exactly where the main entrance was. We unnecessarily walked up a hill that wasn't the entrance, so we had to walk back down it and up another hill to the actual entrance. Whoops!

 

Our first view of the fort enhance

 

Oh hai there

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I had to wear my "Universidad de Iowa" shirt when in Puerto Rico! We actually met a young local man who asked if we go there and we had a conversation about the University of Iowa. enhance

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Ooh artsy.

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I'll just stay here all day, thanks

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Here's the route we took originally and realized our mistake:

We headed from the ship north along the yellow line to the star. Once we were there and realized that wasn't the entrance we headed back down the hill and went up the blue route towards the triangle, which is where the main entrance is. Hopefully that helps someone so they don't make the same mistake!

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We paid the $7pp charge and got a receipt to keep to take to the other fort so we can get in. It was so awesome to see all of the history and amazing views from the fort. I did a lot of reading about the history of the forts before we got there, so to finally be there was pretty amazing. My husband liked seeing all of the history and going into the sentry turrets. He pointed out that the people who used to defend the forts were very short because the turrets and doorways were pretty short. The A/C and facilities at the main entrance were nice too, lol. It was VERY humid and warm already for early in the day and we quickly became sweaty and gross. We had to walk through a dark creepy tunnel to get into the main plaza in the fort. Once there, we climbed more stairs and ramps which was slightly strenuous but well worth the effort for the beautiful views. Seeing San Juan from that perspective was truly remarkable.

 

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We enjoyed a great walk along Calle Norzagaray west towards Castillo San Felipe del Morro. We way the La Perla community and pieces of the fort along the walk and werw able to read some history about the area on the journey over. My husband thought it was crazy that you could see the income differences in communities based on where your home was located in respect to the fort and the water. We made it to the second fort and I was really pumped to see people flying kites on the giant lawn. All of the pictures I've seen of Castillo San Felipe del Morro have had people flying kites and I finally got to see it in person! It was a very long hike up the road to the fort, especially in the sun.

 

We showed the desk attendant our receipt from the first fort and got in with no problems. It was a very different fort style than the first one. It was painted and had many more rooms with designated jobs, such as "church" or "kitchen." There were many more awesome views, probably even better than the first fort. We also saw a lighthouse up close which was really cool. There was a random rain storm for about 1 minute then it stopped and we were able to stay dry the rest of the time at the forts.

 

The kites! enhance

 

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So it was a little windy... enhance

 

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We walked to La Fortaleza, where the governor lives. Along the way we saw all of these beautifully bright colored buildings, and it really hit me that we're in San Juan. It's so crazy to see things in pictures and then finally be face to face with it. On our walk, we stumbled upon a bastion with wonderful views of Puerto Rico. While staring out over the country, we had this awesome conversation about how it's so weird that we unintentionally equate San Juan with all of Puerto Rico, but really this huge city is just one piece of an entire country. There's so much to see and do in San Juan, but there's no way that can provide the entire picture of the country. It would be like going to New York City and saying that sums up all of America.

 

Those colors! enhance

 

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Can I paint my house this color? enhance

 

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A panorama from the bastion we found: enhance

 

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We took some time to shop while we were on our way back to the ship. While we were in a store, there was another heavy burst of rain that lasted maybe 5 minutes, and then it was dry once again. We had a fun conversation with the cashier while we were stuck in the rain and bought a few trinkets to remember our trip by. We didn't want to leave the street of San Juan but we were hungry and very sweaty so we made our way back to the ship to shower and change. My husband got food from Guys Burger and I found some things to eat at the Lido Marketplace. While on the deck, we had someone take our picture with the well-traveled Hawkeye flag. I'm really bummed I forgot about it on the ship and we didn't get a picture with it at one of the forts, so I suppose this has to do. We watched the Royal Anthem of the Seas sail away and sat in the Serenity for a bit. The area was pretty empty at 2:30 so we had no problem finding a seat. We ordered a drink and enjoyed the Serenity until the sun became too intense. We headed down to the lanai to find some shade and watched our sail away from there. We saw a rainbow too, which was fun. San Juan was such a beautiful stop and we can't wait to come back!!

 

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Taking advantage of the empty Serenity to use a cuddle clam and drink a piña colada

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Spot the rainbow! enhance

 

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We took a quick nap before dinner since walking around all day was pretty exhausting. Since we had all of this extra onboard credit for missing St. Thomas, we decided to treat ourselves to a dinner in the steakhouse. Turns out, I forgot that I don't really like steak, so there's that... I really have a thing for hating red bleeding meat so even when I ask for my meat for be medium-well or well-done, it's rarely at the brown/pink color I'm looking for. I'm also a really slow eater naturally, and when you add chewing chunks of meat fifty times per bite, it is all a torturous process. On the plus side, we had a seat next to the window which gave us a great view! The staff was also wonderful.

 

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We started off dinner with different types of bread served with cool butters. The swirl bread, whatever that's called, was delicious. The pretzels were also pretty good. We had a complimentary dish from the chef which was Parmesan cheese three ways. It was cool but not really a substantive dish. I ordered the french onion soup and it came out very very very hot, but it was really good. My husband had the shrimp cocktail with "gorgeous shrimp," and the guacamole-type topping was fun. The salad he had was very fresh and the ranch dressing was delicious. During our dinner, I did learn something new about my husband, even after 5.5 years together. He was moving the radishes off his plate and said he doesn't like them because they're too spicy for a vegetable. LOL. He likes spicy things but apparently not in vegetable format. He also tried to make a radish pun: "They should decide what they want to be, rad or not. There's no time for indecisive vegetables"..... it's a slow burn, I'll just let it sink in.

 

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I had the wagyu steak and ordered it medium-well, and it was medium at best. It was very red/pink and I wasn't a fan. The mac and cheese side was super delicious. The onion rings were mostly bread with a thin piece of onion, but still tasty if you want breaded rings. My husband ordered the garlic ratin, which the server said was like a broccoli rabe, but he didn't like it and found it too bitter. He also ordered the 14oz NY Strip Steak and said it was perfectly cooked medium rare with a nice crust, and that it was perfectly good without a sauce but did like to add a dab of the bernaise to it.

 

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For dessert, we shared two plates. The chocolate sphere was good but the chocolate was untempered, meaning it didn't have the shine or crispness that it should. We also had the apple tarte tatan and it wasn't that good. The crust was hard and the apples didn't seem to have the right flavor or sweetness that we were looking for. The couple next to us ordered the table art dessert and it was really cool to see being done. We obviously can't comment on the flavor but it looked pretty and they seemed to enjoy it. Shoutout to the couple who let us film it!

 

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Make it full screen for better viewing pleasure. I sped it up to 3x but the original video was about 2.5 minutes.

bXmp3mUNXT8

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We tried to watch the Hasbro game show but it was really slow moving and not super entertaining. We're also pretty sure that that cruise director Cookie made a kid cry by asking her too many questions. Woops! We left the show and sat in the atrium and listened to the strings trio. They were incredibly talented and we really enjoyed people watching and listening to the music. We took the time to write some of this review while we were there as well.

 

At 8:40, we went into the dining room to get the S'more parfait for dessert. Yes, we really did go there just for dessert. The S'mores parfait is SO delicious and very much worth the trip, even if you eat somewhere else for dinner. We had a nice conversation with the couple seated next to us while we were there and of course recommended the parfait for dessert 😆 We were in and out of the dining room within 20 minutes. We went back to the atrium to listen to more music and play cards before seeing the Love and Marriage gameshow. It was an absolutely blast, as always, and Cookie really helped take it over the top. We were laughing the whole time and really loved it. The newlywed couple was the couple we met while waiting to board the ship on embarkation day, so that was really cool to see. Our last stop of the day was our room to prepare for our next day of adventure.

 

UP NEXT: Amber Cove, Dominican Republic

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Just saw your review, and I'm subscribing. Thanks for sharing your vacation with us, and I just love the pictures.

 

That's very kind of you, thank you!

 

Really enjoying your review. Can’t wait to hear about San Juan!

 

Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy the massive picture dump of San Juan I just posted :p

 

Following along- I'm trying to talk my DH into same ship/itinerary sailing out of Miami in March!

Fingers crossed that this review helps sway him into saying yes!

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On the Magic in 316 days (Southern) out of Ft. Lauderdale for my son's graduation cruise and on the Fascination departing from San Juan in 30 days. Make sure you do the Bacardi tour next time you're there. Looking forward to the rest of your review as haven't been on the Magic yet. What were you planning for St. Thomas? That's one of our ports on our cruise next month and only one haven't decided. We've been before and not one of our favs so any suggestions are welcome.

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I am going on the Magic in September and have cabin 6430. Did you have any obstruction to the water below? Still reading your review and enjoying it!

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