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Summer 2020--4 of us--2 adults and 2 kiddos (7 & 9)

Two itineraries for being gone on the 4th of July

Horizon-Miami-Aruba-Bonaire-Curacao (with sea days to make it an 8 day)

Magic-HMC-Grand Turk-Aruba-Bonaire (with sea days to make it an 8 day)

 

We'll have been to all of the ports except Bonaire by this point. Money is "close" it's about ships. We've been on both classes of ships. I have preferences about dates (one started 4th of July, one including it) but that's not a deal breaker. I'm just torn.

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I like the A-B and C myself. Newer ship with maybe more for the kids to do.

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I have not been on the Horizon but have the Vista and Magic. Also done all these ports. To me I would choose the Magic. The couple of added things on the Vista did not justify the crowd issue I felt. Plus I like the hot tubs on the lanai in the evenings. Hardly ever crowded. If you like snorkeling Bonaire is great and I suggest Woodwind Bonaire as a snorkel excursion. Great crew and a short walk from the dock to catch the boat. Some don't like Bonaire because a lot of it is dessert but the water is beautiful and the island isn't over commercialized like Curacao and Aruba. Also for the Magic is HMC and Grand Turk which both make for awesome beach days.

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I'm doing the second one next year. The first wasn't an option for the dates I was looking at. I haven't been to any of those ports yet. If I had the choice I'd go with the full ABC on the newer ship. It seems easier to get a cruise to HMC than it is Curacao.

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Posted (edited)

A little more for kids to do on the Horizon (water slides are different and they sports court has other things besides mini golf).   That said, in summer time more cruisers on Horizon just by sheer size.  Both ships will be full. 

 will add, IMO the spas on Dream Class ships are much nicer than on the Vista or Horizon.

However, Magic does offer opportunity for the Orlando parks before or after cruise. That could be a draw for the kids.

All the ports are primarily beach ports.

Edited by crewsweeper

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That would be a tough choice for me. I prefer Dream class ships over Vista class ships, but Curacao is my favorite port. If it really comes down to the ships like you mentioned, I would go with Magic. I had a similar choice between Magic and Horizon when picking a Christmas cruise this coming December and went with Magic because of the ship. 

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6 hours ago, Vitamin Sea Addict said:

Horizon-Miami-Aruba-Bonaire-Curacao (with sea days to make it an 8 day)

Your kids will love Horizon much more than Magic.

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If you go for the ports, then I'd do the Magic because Half Moon Cay is so much nicer than Curacao. If you go for the ship, then I'd do the Horizon since it's larger and newer. 

 

If it were me, I'd do the Magic. I love the Magic and Half Moon Cay is Paradise. 

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40 minutes ago, teknoge3k said:

If you go for the ports, then I'd do the Magic because Half Moon Cay is so much nicer than Curacao. If you go for the ship, then I'd do the Horizon since it's larger and newer. 

 

If it were me, I'd do the Magic. I love the Magic and Half Moon Cay is Paradise. 

Curacao is my favorite port and HMC is often missed due to weather. While HMC is undoubtedly beautiful, Curacao has amazing beaches as well, excellent snorkeling, shopping, upscale restaurants, and usually a longer day in the port, often staying until 11pm. 

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Horizon has Family Harbor Area that is not available on Magic.  You need to book a Family Harbor cabin to be able use the associated amenities. 

 

Magic itinerary with Grand Turk and HMC offers a beach opportunity right off the ship at no additional cost. 

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I’m no where near clued up enough about Carnival to give you advice on what option to pick, but I just wanted to say that my family did a Southern Caribbean cruise in January and I can’t speak highly enough about the ports of Curacao and Bonaire.  They were our favourites on a 14 night cruise - partly I think because of the two excellent excursions we did.  

 

In Curacao, we toured with Gail’s Gallery and in Bonaire we toured with Brenda of H20 Visions.  Brenda found us a massive bait ball which provided a snorkelling excursion unlike any other we’ve done and I thought the island of Bonaire was beautiful.  I’ve read reviews saying there isn’t much to see on Bonaire, but I couldn’t disagree more strongly.

Anyway, pics of these excursions are in posts 15 and 16 incase you are interested.

 

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That is a tough choice.  I love HMC but I also did like the Horizon except the theater.  You might ask what people think of the kids club on both ships if you kids will be using it.

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Magic.  You're not missing much in Bonaire.  I hear the scuba diving is good, if you're into that, but otherwise it's an arid little place.

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On 7/12/2019 at 6:41 PM, PhillyFan33579 said:

That would be a tough choice for me. I prefer Dream class ships over Vista class ships, but Curacao is my favorite port. If it really comes down to the ships like you mentioned, I would go with Magic. I had a similar choice between Magic and Horizon when picking a Christmas cruise this coming December and went with Magic because of the ship. 

Ditto......exactly my sentiments too!!  Magic over Horizon hands down.....but Curacao is one of my favorite ports in the Caribbean!!

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I would choose the Magic, which includes HMC.  I like the Dream class much better, but we don't cruise with young children.  I've been to HMC twice and really loved it.  The weather was wonderful both times. 
Your kids are young, so I think they will have just as much fun on either ship.  I think teens might like the Horizon better.  If looking at just the schedule and not the ship, I would still choose the Magic.

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