MSC Fantasia
MSC Fantasia / MSC Cruises
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4D Cinema
4D Cinema / MSC Cruises
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Il Polo Nord children's area
Il Polo Nord children's area / MSC Cruises
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Main pool
Main pool / MSC Cruises
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Daybed loungers
Daybed loungers / MSC Cruises
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L'Étoile / MSC Cruises
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Aurea Spa
Aurea Spa / MSC Cruises
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Deluxe suite
Deluxe suite / MSC Cruises
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MSC Fantasia

Our Ship Review
Deal Expert / Travel Blogger

Launched by MSC Cruises in 2008 as the first of four ships in its class, 3,272-guest MSC Fantasia features four pools (including one that can be covered in inclement weather with a giant glass and steel dome), multiple fountains, acres of sun loungers, and a soaring showpiece atrium with a Swarovski crystal-studded staircase. The ship mostly sails itineraries in the Mediterranean and attracts an international mix of families and couples with its budget-focused cruise fares.

What We Love

MSC Yacht Club: This premium ship-within-a-ship enclave sits atop the forward half of MSC Fantasia and features a separate observation lounge and pool area, as well as the ship's most deluxe cabins and suites.

Italian Coffees, Gelato, and Pastries: Aromatic espresso drinks are available for purchase in the stylish Il Cappuccino Coffee Bar overlooking the atrium — guests can add a scoop of Italian-style gelato or a pastry if they're feeling indulgent.

MSC Aurea Spa: This lavish natural stone, wood, and tile haven inspired by the spas of Bali offers 20 types of massages, 19 body treatments, and 19 facials, plus a Turkish Bath, sauna, relaxation area, fitness center, and juice bar.

Best Known For

Genuine Italian Cuisine: The main restaurants — Il Cherchio d'Oro and La Cantina Toscana — serve, as one would expect on an Italian ship, great pastas and other regional specialties from around the country. These are often the best choices, however, so it helps to love Italian food.

Big Entertainment: The main shows in the two-deck Teatro l'Avanguardia theater are known for their epic production values. Given the ship’s multilingual clientele, offerings veer away from typical Broadway fare in favor of acrobatic and musical performances featuring vibrant costumes and lavish sets.  

Who It's Best For

Europhiles and Mega Ship Fans: This is a perfect ship for anyone seeking a European-style cruise experience on a big, splashy ship with a wide variety of entertainment and dining options.

Don't Say We Didn't Warn You

It's Multilingual: MSC Fantasia isn't right for those who prefer a typical American-style cruise experience — a large percentage of passengers are from Europe and announcements are made in multiple languages. It's also a high-density ship, accommodating up to 4,363 guests at capacity, so crowds and lines are common.