I've never heard that Carnival owns that area. I have ventured beyond it a small ways once to shop a little. Little is the keyword, it was mostly street vendors without much to sell of interest. I did get a good deal on a silver necklace that was exactly what I was looking for. One lady had the ingenious idea of pricing everything $1 US. I bought several small picture frames from her.
It's probably going to come down to one's comfort level of being approached with sales pitches every few steps. I had no problems venturing a little ways from the gated area.