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CARNIVAL CRUISE LINE ANNOUNCES SIGNIFICANT EXPANSION IN NORFOLK, VIRGINIA

Today, Carnival Cruise Line announced that it will more than double its cruise offerings from Norfolk, Virginia in 2023. The company will extend its sailings to a consecutive six-month period from May through October. This announcement is the first step towards a suggested year-round cruise program from Norfolk beginning in 2025. Currently, Carnival and City of Norfolk leaders are discussing what terminal and port improvements are necessary to support significant growth in operations. 

In 2023, Carnival plans to welcome approximately 100,000 guests, bringing the highest volume of cruise guests in the history of Norfolk’s Half Moone Cruise Center. The new 2023 offers are now available for booking, including four to ten-day voyages aboard Carnival Magic featuring stops in the Eastern Caribbean, The Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, and New England.

“We have been working closely with Norfolk city officials on this expansion since our successful restart earlier this year and it’s great to now share our plans with our guests,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “We look forward to building on our 20-year commitment to this community and continuing the momentum toward further expansion in the future, while increasing our positive economic impact in Norfolk.”

Carnival Cruise Line Virginia Sailings

Carnival Cruise Line has been sailing from Norfolk since 2022 but Carnival Magic, which began seasonal sailing for the first time in May, has become the largest ship to embark guests from the Norfolk Half Moone Cruise Center, following a variety of enhancements to the port. With an occupancy of up to 4,724 passengers, Carnival Magic offers a wide array of stateroom accommodations, a variety of dining choices, Carnival’s signature entertainment, water slides, the Cloud 9 spa, and the Serenity- an adult-only retreat. 

“For twenty years, Norfolk has valued its partnership with Carnival Cruise Line. Today’s announcement is a significant milestone for our cruise program and our community,” said Norfolk Mayor Kenneth Alexander. “For a full six months next year, guests from across the Mid-Atlantic will have the chance to board a Carnival ship from Norfolk and beginning in 2025, our collective goal is for Carnival to set sail from Nauticus year-round”.

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Carnival’s plan to extend Carnival Magic’s stay in Norfolk is part of a larger expansion of the cruise line’s mid-Atlantic guest operations. Beginning in June of 2023, Carnival will offer year-round service from New York when the 5,260-passenger Costa Venezia joins the fleet as Carnival Venezia. After the addition, Carnival Magic won’t have to split its spring/summer season between New York and Norfolk anymore, allowing the ship to remain in Norfolk for half the year.

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Colleen Devaney is a contributing writer for Porthole Cruise and Travel. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English and Film & Television from The University of Arizona. She enjoys spending time with family, traveling the world and playing with her dogs, Bailey, Rocky & Lady.