written by Crystal Boston, Travel Specialist
I just returned from my Disney Cruise Line vacation on the inaugural sailing of the Disney Fantasy after dry dock and WOW – the Disney Fantasy is a magical ship!
My husband was cruising with me and we chose a Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah for our first Disney Fantasy experience. Disney Cruise Line has thought of everything to ensure first-rate comfort and convenience during your voyage. The verandah is a private sanctuary where you can watch the sun rise, bask in ocean breezes and enjoy your morning coffee or an evening beverage. We have never felt cramped or crowded in our stateroom when cruising with Disney. The Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah design features include:
- A sitting area with a couch, TV and desk
- A heavy privacy curtain to separate the sitting and sleeping areas
- A “split bath” (in most) that includes a bathroom with a vanity, sink, shower and tub and a half bathroom with a vanity, sink and toilet
- A leather-upholstered ottoman with hollow inside storage
- Cabinets with storage space in the living area
- And my favorite feature – Elevated wooden bed frames for under-bed storage of suitcases and other large items
- For the kids (or kids at heart), a mural of Peter Pan, Tinker Bell, Wendy and her brothers soaring through a starry sky reveals itself when the upper-berth bed is pulled down!
This inaugural sailing included 2 full days on Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island, consistently rated by Disney Guests as their favorite port of call – and MY favorite port of call when cruising with Disney!! Castaway Cay is reserved exclusively for Disney cruisers and the ship 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 and 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.
Your “Key to the World” card will work 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. Alcoholic beverages are available for purchase and, if you are traveling without children, Disney offers “adult only” areas at Castaway Cay – Serenity Bay is a secluded beach exclusively for adults (where you just might encounter Captain Jack Sparrow strolling the beach!) and families can have fun together at the Castaway Family Beach.
We are runners and Disney Cruise Line offers a 5K on 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 when you board 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. The vibe of the event is casual, a fun experience worth the early wake-up!
Cruising with Disney is a very casual experience – I wore simple dresses and flip flops while my husband wore shorts and polos – even to dinner. The only exceptions are if you reserve adult only dinging 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, dance clubs, karaoke, trivia and so much more! There is definitely enough to keep you busy on a Disney Cruise if you aren’t the lounging at the pool or beach type.
A few new experiences now offered on the Disney Fantasy include Sweet on You, Tiffany & Co., and something just for kids, Star Wars: Command Post and Marvel Super Hero Academy.
The whole family can indulge in frozen desserts that satisfy your confectionery cravings at Sweet on You, a brand-new specialty ice cream emporium located just outside Cabana’s featuring 20 hand-crafted gelatos, 16 ice cream flavors, 32 tempting toppings, homemade chocolate, truffles, a large selection of candy and more!
Disney Cruise Line now hosts the world’s premier jewelry and iconic American luxury brand, Tiffany & Co., with an exclusive store aboard the Disney Fantasy. Indulge your most dazzling fantasies and peruse Tiffany’s timeless designs and discover why their quintessential little blue box is known around the globe!
At Star Wars: Command Post younglings can battle the Dark Side like never before. This hidden Resistance base transports new recruits to a galaxy far, far away—Disney’s Oceaneer Club, to be exact! Young Rebels can train with some of their favorite heroes from the legendary film saga and connect to holographic models of the Millennium Falcon, an X-Wing Fighter spacecraft or even the Death Star via the interactive “holotable,” a high-tech control hub that provides one of-a-kind Star Wars adventures and may even come face-to-face with First Order Stormtroopers!
At Marvel Super Hero Academy young trainees will learn the values of courage, compassion and responsibility alongside some of Marvel’s mightiest. The Marvel Super Hero Academy is an innovative experience where kids can master the mystic arts under the mentor-ship of Doctor Strange. Immersive gaming and interactive portals help beginners unleash their inner strength, become Avengers and discover the true meaning of “super powers”!