The Disney Wonder

written by Crystal Boston, Travel Specialist

I recently returned from my first experience on the Disney Wonder, this was my final new Disney Cruise ship experience until the new ships debut in 2021, 2022, and 2023.

There are so many things that I enjoy about sailing with Disney Cruise Line… large staterooms with under-bed space, exceptional dining experiences, friendly and accommodating crew, brilliant Broadway-like entertainment, Castaway Cay and I can’t forget the Towel Art – a fun treat when you return to your stateroom each evening!


On a Disney Cruise, you experience rotational dining. I enjoy getting to know the dining team while also being able to experience different dining options. As this was my first experience on the Disney Wonder, I also enjoyed 2 new dining experiences – Triton’s and Tiana’s Place.


While Animator’s Palette is still my favorite of the rotational dining options, Triton’s and Tiana’s Place did not disappoint. I dined at Animator’s Palette on my final night so breakfast on disembark day was also at Animator’s Palette.

While I have toured the other stateroom types, we have always chosen a Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah and we prefer the starboard side so that we have a great view of the island when we arrive at Castaway Cay. The staterooms are good sized with under-bed storage for your luggage. We have never felt crowded in our stateroom when cruising with Disney – and the Disney Wonder was no exception.


This was a 3-night cruise, but I still enjoyed 2 ports of call – Nassau and Castaway Cay. Castaway Cay is always my favorite port of call and I especially love the “double-dip” sailings that offer 2 full days at Castaway Cay – I will need to get back on one of those sailings soon! And, if you have read some of my other blogs, fireworks are a big deal to me, Disney is the only cruise line that is granted permission to display fireworks at sea.


While I did not have a day at sea during this cruise, I was still able to enjoy the ship – character meet & greets that you often cannot find at the parks, recently released movies, pools, water slides, walk up dining, entertainment, deck parties, dance clubs, karaoke, trivia, unlimited room service – it’s all included!! The onboard Pub even offers a buffet of light snacks early evening with another buffet for late night snacks later each night. There is definitely enough to keep you busy on a Disney Cruise if you aren’t the lounging at the pool or beach type and you won’t go hungry!

As I mentioned, Castaway Cay is my favorite port of call when cruising with Disney and it was a perfect island day – not too hot, sunny skies and low wind!!


The tide even washed out a bit to create a sand bar that was easily reachable by walking into the ocean and we were able to see beautiful starfish and stingray there!


Castaway Cay is Disney’s private island and is consistently rated by Disney Guests as their favorite port of call and it’s reserved exclusively for Disney cruisers. The ships will dock right at the island to allow you to come and go as you please while enjoying experiences such as snorkeling, boating, swimming and sunbathing. Bicycles can also be rented if you want to explore the island’s nature trails. While all areas of the island can be reached by walking, an island tram offers four stops to help you easily get where you want to go. Dining is also included at Castaway Cay as part of your cruise package with covered outdoor restaurants serving burgers, BBQ chicken and ribs and alcoholic beverages are available for purchase. And there are even some special character meet & greets on the island too!

I am a runner and, weather permitting, Disney Cruise Line offers a 5K on every stop at Castaway Cay. It’s very informal but you do get race bibs and a medal at the finish line. If you want to participate in the 5K on Castaway Cay, you can register at Guest Services once onboard your cruise. Your registration ticket, “Key to the World” and photo ID are required the day of your event to participate. The 3.1-mile out-and-back event is free and family friendly; it’s open to walkers and runners ages 10 and older. The race takes place first thing in the morning on the island, typically with a meeting time onboard of 8 am, and participants are the first Guests off the ship at Castaway Cay This is a very casual fun experience worth the early wake-up!

Families can have fun together at the Castaway Family Beach and, if you are traveling without children, Disney offers a secluded beach exclusively for adults – Serenity Bay. Your “Key to the World” card works for all purchases on Castaway Cay except at the local post office where you can send mail to your loved ones back home with a Bahamian postage stamp; the post card postage rate is approximately $0.65 USD each.


Cruising with Disney is a very casual experience – I wear sun dresses and flip flops while my husband wears shorts and polos – we do dress up a bit for dinner but “cruise casual” attire is appropriate for dinner. The only exceptions are if you reserve adult only dining experiences at Palo or Remy which both have dress codes.


Are you ready for YOUR Disney Cruise experience? Request your Disney Cruise Line quote today!

Frozen Ever After Dessert Party at Epcot World Showcase

written by Crystal Boston, Travel Specialist

The Frozen Ever After Dessert Party was introduced at Walt Disney world last July and, while I always try to explore new experiences as soon as they are available, I was just able to experience this event for the first time!

This special ticketed event is sold separately, and theme park admission is required in addition to your party ticket.

You can arrive for check-in at any time but it’s best to arrive early to get the most out of your party experience. You will receive a sparkly wristband [the MagicBand is mine] when you check-in and the “doors” officially open at 7:45 pm and tables are assigned so if you are a smaller party, like me and my husband, you will be seated with other 

Guests that you may not know.  Once seated you can partake of  the food and beverage buffets set up throughout the reserved party area.

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From fresh fruits and breads with cheese fondue to sweet treats specially designed with a ‘Frozen’ theme, the buffet also included warm pudding treats [with ice cream if you like] and fun Freeze Fried Salted Caramel Popcorn at the Nitro Station. In addition, there were specialty Frozen-themed beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, as well as beer and wine.


Then, from the special VIP reserved viewing area we were able to get an amazing view of IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth.


It seemed as if the fireworks were right above our heads – and with our reserved seating, we were able to enjoy the fireworks display comfortably without anyone blocking our view.


They even gave us all special viewing glasses that made the fireworks look like they had snowflakes around them – I wish I could have gotten a photo of that for you!!


After the fireworks ended, we were then escorted to the Frozen Ever After ride for a private, no waiting experience!


If you or your little ones love Frozen, I highly recommend this reserved experience.

Check My Disney Experience for more information and to reserve your experience online – Frozen Ever After Dessert Party at Epcot World Showcase – or contact your Travel Agent!

New Details Emerge at a Toy Story Land Industry Showcase

written by Sara Toerner, Travel Specialist

A park-wide reimagination has been revealed for Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida and new details emerged recently at an industry showcase hosted by the Walt Disney Company.

Toy Story Land Opens June 30
Hollywood Studios invites guests into an immersive world of Hollywood music, theater, and film and this year marks one of the most exciting enhancements since its debut in 1989. Disney World’s Incredible Summer brings big changes to Disney parks, particularly the opening of Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios June 30, 2018.

What makes this such an exciting time at Disney World?
Toy Story is a movie franchise that began in 1995 with the release of the first film, in which Andy’s entourage of toys (led by cowboy Woody) is rocked by newcomer, and Space Ranger, Buzz Lightyear. The series continued with the success of Toy Story 2 and Toy Story 3, granting the franchise multi-generational appeal.

At a recent tourism industry showcase, The Walt Disney World Company revealed that guests will step into a NEW eleven-acre playland in the larger-than-life setting of Andy’s imagination. Andy has designed the perfect play space decorated with more than 400 toy blocks and towering toys from the hit Toy Story franchise, including the stars of the movies Woody and Buzz Lightyear.

Toy Story Land brings the addition of new attractions to Hollywood Studios
***Slinky Dog Dash send riders dipping and dashing around blocks, stretching Slinky’s coils to the max on a coaster that the whole family can enjoy together.
***On Alien Swirling Saucers, guests climb into a toy rocket and hang on for dear life among high-energy music, lighting, and sound effects. Alien Flying Saucers is designed to look like one of the three-eyed alien play sets and sends guests flying around while trying to capture our vehicle. If we’re lucky we may be captured by the claw!
The entrance to Toy Story Land is near Toy Story Mania, which remains one of Hollywood’s top attractions and falls in line with the theme of the new Land.
***New intelligence reveals that the height requirements are 38’ for Slinky Dog Dash and 32’ for Alien Swirling Saucers. Just confirmed – BOTH new attractions will be eligible for FastPass+!!!

Also announced as part of the massive addition:
The toys have turned Woody’s lunch box into new eatery, aptly named “Woodys Lunch Box.” Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Woody’s participates in the Disney Dining Plan and features a new style of cuisine (which we nickname “lunch box fusion”) with tasty treats like three-cheese grilled cheese and a banana split parfait. Guests can take home treasures from their visit to Toy Story Land in new merchandise locations – keep an eye out for collectible trading pins with new attraction logos and a light-up tumbler that guests can take home as a souvenir.

Toy Story movies are light-hearted, inspiring, fun films that the whole family can enjoy together. Toy Story Land is designed the same way – to provide families with a fun place to play together in a space that entertains both young and old.

Contact Wish Upon a Star with Us to book YOUR next Universal Studios, Disney, or Cruise vacation. You’ll appreciate the personal knowledge and professional assistance provided while planning a memorable vacation experience.

New Ships Coming from Disney Cruise Line – the Latest News

Written by Sara Toerner, Travel Specialist

Disney Cruise Line’s newest ships have us dreaming of salty days at sea and warm sunbathing on Castaway Cay… and the latest news is here! While two ships were originally announced, Disney Cruise Line has assured us that indeed –THREE new ships are set to sail in 2021, 2022, and 2023! Chairman and CEO Bob Iger of the Walt Disney Company revealed the latest ship rendering at the company’s annual shareholders meeting recently.

According to the latest press release, Disney Cruise Line’s new ships “will bring Disney’s iconic stories and franchises to life in thrilling and surprising ways, building on the creativity we’ve introduced across our existing fleet.”

These ground-breaking new vessels will display the latest/greatest in cruising technology. We anticipate superior guest cabin standards, thrilling entertainment, and enchanting spaces that exceed those of the existing four DCL vessels. In fact, we are told that the new ships will sail utilizing the power of clean energy. No word yet on exact design plans, ship names, or itineraries though we are certain that the newest ships will WOW us as much, if not more, than the current fleet.

From what the newest image reveals, we have everything that we love about Disney cruise ships to look forward to – classic beauty, elegant detailing, and family-friendly activities that keep us coming back for more. The latest renderings show a magnificent vessel, hull dressed in the iconic dark blue and decorated with Disney’s fanciful marigold scrollwork. The matching red steam stacks reach out to the sky from the top decks and a faint see-thru tube can be seen running half of the mid-ship sun deck – an AquaDuck waterslide, we presume. These new ships will be slightly larger than the exiting Fantasy and Dream ships – 140,000 gross tons carrying 1,250 cabins. Much larger than the Magic and Wonder ships.

While we have an ocean of possibilities to look forward to with these announcements, there are plenty of enhancements made recently to the Disney Dream, Magic, Fantasy, and Wonder that give guests of all ages an exciting vacation each day aboard. The current vessels sailing under the Disney Cruise Line flag boast recent new additions like: Star Wars Day at Sea, Beauty and the Beast live on stage, and two new magical restaurants – one Tangled-themed and one Princess & the Frog-themed that keep cast and crew dancing on their feet.

The cruise experts at Wish Upon a Star recommend Disney Cruise Line to vacationers traveling with or without children. Our Agents love using their industry knowledge and first-hand experience to help transform YOUR magical cruise into the vacation of your dreams.

Ready to take your family on a memorable getaway or the cruise vacation of a lifetime? Contact YOUR Wish Upon a Star agent today for no-cost vacation booking and planning assistance from the folks who know Disney vacations the best. You’ll appreciate the personal knowledge and professional assistance provided while planning a memorable vacation experience.

Disney Magic – Marvel Day at Sea

written by Crystal Boston, Travel Specialist

I recently returned from my first experience on a Marvel Day at Sea cruise on the Disney Magic.

This was my second experience on the Disney Magic and I cruised just before the ship goes in to dry dock for a few updates – most notable, reimagining Carioca’s into Rapunzel’s Royal Table!  But more about that once I cruise on the refurbished Disney Magic…


This was also my first 5-night itinerary, with 2 days at sea and a first visit to Cozumel – lots of firsts with this cruise experience!

Since we had just sailed on the Disney Magic in December, we knew our way around the ship and, even though we did not have the same stateroom as December, we were lucky enough to have the services of our same stateroom Hostess, Esther. She was always so friendly and accommodating, taking care of our every need – even things we didn’t know we needed – and she creates the best Towel Art!

One of the things we love about a Disney Cruise is the rotational dining. It’s fun to get to know your server team but to also be able to experience different dining options. As this was a 5-night cruise, we were able to experience Animator’s Palette twice – it’s my favorite in the rotational dining options. And, this time, we dined at Lumiere’s on our final night so our breakfast on disembark day was also at Lumiere’s.

While I have toured the other stateroom types, we have always chosen a Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah and we prefer the starboard side so that we have a great view of the island when we arrive at Castaway Cay. The staterooms are good sized with under-bed storage for your luggage and we have never felt crowded in our stateroom when cruising with Disney, even on the smaller ships. My favorite feature is the elevated bed frames for under-bed storage of suitcases and other large items.

This Marvel Day at Sea sailing offered Marvel Character Meet & Greets and entertainment in addition to the normal onboard fun! We signed up in advance for meet & greets with several characters – including Black Panther – and then met some without “reservations”.

There were also characters roaming about the ship during our Marvel Day at Sea and an evening show with fireworks – Disney is the only cruise line that is granted permission to display fireworks at sea. [if you have read some of my other blogs, fireworks are a big deal to me!]

Even though this was a 5-night cruise, we only had 2 ports of call – Castaway Cay and Cozumel. While Castaway Cay is always my favorite port of call, Cozumel was a new experience for us. We were able to check out some “local” shops and also found a restaurant chain that we frequent back home.


While our Marvel Day at Sea was filled with lots of Marvel fun, on our second day at sea we were more able to enjoy the ship – movies, pools, water slides, games, dining, entertainment – it’s all included. We also signed up in advance for the Mixology session during our second day at sea. It was a very fun and informative session and, for $20.00 per person, the price was great as it included the 5 adult beverages that were featured during the session. I highly recommend any of the adult beverage sessions offered during a Disney Cruise.

Castaway Cay is my favorite port of call when cruising with Disney!! Castaway Cay is Disney’s private island and is consistently rated by Disney Guests as their favorite port of call and it’s reserved exclusively for Disney cruisers. The ships will dock right at the island to allow you to come and go as you please while enjoying experiences such as snorkeling, boating, swimming and sunbathing. Bicycles can also be rented if you want to explore the island’s nature trails. While all areas of the island can be reached by walking, an island tram offers four stops to help you easily get where you want to go.








We are runners and, weather permitting, Disney Cruise Line offers a 5K on every stop at Castaway Cay. It’s very informal but you do get race bibs and a medal at the finish line. If you want to participate in the 5K on Castaway Cay, you can register at Guest Services once onboard your cruise. Your registration ticket, “Key to the World” and photo ID are required the day of your event to participate. The 3.1-mile out-and-back event is free and family friendly; it’s open to walkers and runners ages 10 and older. The race takes place first thing in the morning on the island, typically with a meeting time onboard of 8 am, and participants are the first Guests off the ship at Castaway Cay This is a very casual fun experience worth the early wake-up!

Your “Key to the World” card works for all purchases on Castaway Cay except at the local post office where you can send mail to your loved ones back home with a Bahamian postage stamp; the post card postage rate is approximately $0.65 USD each. Dining is also included as part of your cruise package with covered outdoor restaurants serving burgers, BBQ chicken and ribs and alcoholic beverages are available for purchase. Families can have fun together at the Castaway Family Beach and, if you are traveling without children, Disney offers “adult only” areas at Castaway Cay – Serenity Bay, a secluded beach exclusively for adults.

After our 5K and lunch I spent my afternoon on Castaway Cay laying in a hammock on Serenity Bay – it was a simply amazing day and a great way to kick off our cruise!

Cruising with Disney is a very casual experience – I wore sun dresses and flip flops while my husband wore shorts and polos – we did dress up a bit for dinner but “cruise casual” attire is appropriate for dinner. The only exceptions are if you reserve adult only dining experiences at Palo or Remy which both have dress codes. We enjoy the rotational dining exclusive to Disney Cruise Line, experiencing a different restaurant and menu with the same servers each evening. And, unlimited room service is also included!!

In addition to exceptional dining experiences, Disney Cruise Line offers many entertainment options including Broadway-like musical productions, viewings of recently released Disney movies, character meet & greets that you often cannot find at the parks, deck parties, water slides and pools, dance clubs, karaoke, trivia and so much more! O’Gills Pub even offers a buffet of light snacks early evening with another buffet for late night snacks later each night. There is definitely enough to keep you busy on a Disney Cruise if you aren’t the lounging at the pool or beach type and you won’t go hungry!

And be sure to give a big wave to Goofy as you disembark, he’s busy helping the crew prepare the ship for the next cruise…

Magic Bands Are Disney’s Hottest Trend And A Must Have For Every Disney World Vacation

written by Sara Toerner, Travel Specialist

Be on the lookout for the next big headline: Magic Bands are the HOTTEST trend in Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, Houston, Atlanta, and Milan. Disney Passholders and Florida Residents know that Magic Bands are a practical tool, essential to the ideal Disney World vacation experience but they’re also a customizable accessory. We wear ours loud and proud!


See, this family’s love for Disney parks runs deep. I’m a vacation planner specializing in Disney cruises but we’ve had a lot of fun over the years planning visits to Disney’s Florida and California parks, too. There’s a little something special at Disney World in Florida though, and it’s free with every Disney resort stay.


So, Disney guests this next one is for you. Be nice. ?

I may have let my love for “MB’s” go a little too far this time….

Ode to Magic Bands
Dear Band,
on my hand
with hip,
microchip.

Accessory so fine,
Even diamonds won’t shine.
Turkey legs on demand;
Divine.

Silhouette of the season
SO fierce. SO rad.
This year’s trends
MB’s make sad.

Sweet Band,
on my hand
with slick, clever tricks
Onyx parallels, vibrant hues
Nubby clip, fashion DO.

Finally! Customize purple!
I just have to have it in blue.
(Wait…. did someone say,
now there’s a version TWO?)

Oh, string of Skittles
With Magical powers
You are my sun through
Summer showers.

Mighty Fortress of PhotoPass
Headmaster of Hacks
Deliverer of Drinks
Sacred Servant of Snacks

So simple yet understated.
Standard-issue but custom planned.
You may look like a basic wrap,
But you’re my Magic Band!

Hold my ticket. Get my door.
I SAY, you DO!
Matte ribbon of wonder
I LOVE YOU!

Do you sport your MB with pride? Do you plan to stalk the mail carrier until your Magic Band package arrives or know someone who does? Copy and paste the web link above and share. Magic Band lovers unite!