Living the Disney Dream
Disney has always been a huge part of my life, yet one thing I am not a fan of is boats. So, in February 2020, when I was presented the opportunity to experience a Disney Cruise as a part of my training at David’s Vacation Club Rentals, I was both excited and nervous. I was nervous about being on a boat for the first time and I was nervous that the Disney magic I have come to know and love would be non-existent compared to what I am used to in the parks and resorts.
This blog i a look back at my February 2020 cruise and talks about some of the elements I look forward to enjoying on a future cruise.
The night before we embarked on the Disney Dream, we stayed the night at Disney’s Old Key West Resort.
By staying on Disney property before your cruise allows you to take the Cruise Shuttle right from your resort. The morning of our departure, we met a Cast Member in the Hospitality House at Old Key West to check-in for the shuttle and then followed her outside to catch the bus. Similar to the Magical Express, the Cruise Line bus has TV screens for guests to play along with Disney trivia and watch Disney cartoons. This made me feel very hopeful for more Disney magic to come!
As we arrived at Port Canaveral, the anticipation grew once our ship was in sight. We were all very eager to get on board and see what our cruise had to offer.
We vacated the bus and entered the line for the check-in desk. Things moved very swiftly, and there was very little waiting at the time we arrived. Once we were checked in, it was time to board the ship. This is where we got our first glimpse of the Disney feels. The entrance to the walkway is a Mickey head, which really made me feel calm as we walked on the ship. Although I was nervous about boarding the ship, my favorite mouse made me feel more at home.
As we approached the entrance to the ship, I was informed by one of my fellow travelers that we would be announced as we entered the cruise. The Cast Members did not disappoint. They took our name and announced us, and I have never felt more regal in my life.
Although I had seen photos of the Disney Dream, none of them prepared me for how beautiful the ship is in real life. With its gold and blue colors in the lobby atrium, the ship feels so majestic the second you step on! Everything looked so fancy, and as I began looking around the atrium, I found all of the Disney touches! Not only was there a Donald statue in the atrium, but there are beautiful mosaics on the wall of Disney princess stories and hidden mickeys to be found!
From that point on, Disney was part of our entire trip! After our muster drill (our mandatory emergency preparedness drill), we decided to take a look at the open houses for the Youth Clubs onboard. As a grown adult, I was extremely impressed with all the Youth Clubs had to offer.
The “It’s a Small World” Nursery is so cute! Inspired by the classic Disney attraction, this nursery is super whimsical and provides a fun place for children 6 months to 3 years old to spend time while also giving their parents the peace of mind that they are being cared for by counselors who are highly trained!
The Oceaneer Club is an awesome place for kids aged 3 to 12 to play aboard the ship.
Fully supervised, the Oceaneer Club offers multiple themed rooms for kids to enjoy, no matter what you love. My favorite room was Andy’s Room; all decked out with Toy Story fun! However, if you have any Star Wars fans or Pixie Hollow fairy friends, the Oceaneer Club offers something for them as well!
While these options screamed Disney, they weren’t for adults. As we were 4 adults traveling together, I was excited to see what other Disney charm we came across on the ship. Boy, was I surprised!
The ship offered multiple nightclubs and bars for adults to enjoy. While not Disney-themed, these places offered Disney activities throughout the day, such as trivia.
There is also a Goofy’s Sports Deck, that along with a basketball court, and has a mini-golf course starring Goofy and his son Max!
One of my favorite parts of the cruise was the food options! I could write on a blog just on all of the food options onboard the Disney Dream, so I will try and keep it to the highlights. Flo’s Cafe on the Pool Deck offers casual dining options all day long for easy grab and go whenever you’re hungry. Featuring some of your favorite Cars characters, you can grab classic favorites like burgers and fries along with salads and sandwiches. Cabana’s is a buffet offered onboard and themed after Finding Nemo.
The Disney Cruise Line offers rotational dining for dinner, which allows guests to experience each table service restaurant! The three restaurants are the Enchanted Garden, Royal Palace, and Animator’s Palate. Each of these restaurants offer delicious food options, from steaks and seafood to salad and chicken. The serving staff even follow you to each restaurant, which gives you the opportunity to develop a relationship with them throughout the sailing.
Throughout the day, the cruise offers many great activities on board for guests to enjoy. Each morning, you can tune into the cruise TV in your stateroom and watch the captain announce all of the activities going on throughout the day. This can be anything from trivia to sports games, along with the times for the live entertainment that happens later on in the evening.
The evening live entertainment is really when all of the Disney magic shines through. Onboard our 3 night sailing, there was a live entertainment show every single night in the Walt Disney Theater. The first night, we saw the Golden Mickeys. This show starts outside the theatre with a wonderful Red-Carpet Pre-Show, where a celebrity columnist interviews guests who were walking in. Then the show begins, and our favorite Disney characters perform songs and dances and are given awards for being the best! This show is super cute and a great way to start off the cruise. It gave me the Disney feeling I was hoping to experience!
The other two live shows are just as good!
Additional live entertainment you can experience onboard is the deck parties!
We got to enjoy both the Sailing Away Deck Party and the Pirate Night Deck Party. Both parties featured Mickey and the gang and got guests dancing and singing along! However, my absolute favorite live entertainment we experienced onboard was the fireworks. I have always loved fireworks, so being able to experience them at sea was so beautiful. They really brought a tear to my eye.
Everything I mentioned above is just a small sample of what there is to enjoy onboard a Disney Cruise. Although I was a huge skeptic before I embarked on the Disney Dream, my trip definitely changed my mind. I was so impressed with everything on board and cannot wait to cruise again in the future!