Well, here’s something for your life bucket list: It’s time to add Disney Cruise to your top 10.
Perfect. Vacation. With Kids. End of Story. Is that enough?
Disney Fantasy Cruise Review
We got lucky enough to be invited on the press preview of the Disney Fantasy last month and since we got home I’ve been plotting family reunion cruises with both sides of our family (yes, trying for two separate trips). This is all aside from the fact that I’ve just lost worked off my Disney Fantasy cruise food baby, so it only makes sense to go back and carb up!
Here’s my Disney Fantasy Cruise review of what we loved, and what makes a Disney cruise unique – or in other words, why I’m trying to find every chance under the warm Caribbean sun to go back.
The Disney Fantasy Ship
The ship’s layout and decor is amazing down to every detail (themed after travel and cruising in the 20’s and 30’s), but wandering about the ship, of course, are all of the characters. You and your little ones are bumping into princesses, pirates, and all of your favorite Disney characters right and left. What I loved is that there weren’t big huge lines, and that even if the character looked like they were on their way out, no matter what, they would stop and interact with the kids and pose for a photo.
Every little detail of the ship is designed, in essence to come alive or interact. You might be stopped staring at a painting on the wall, and it will suddenly start moving. On one floor the big windows (you know, the circle kind on a big ship) are not only designed to be windows, but they are also curved benches like window seats. The fun is really in every little detail. My kids favorite was in one elevator as you’d move up or down the animations on the wall would change.
Here’s a quick view looking down from the 3rd floor onto the main lobby of the ship. The kids were down there dancing with characters.
Even the outside of the ship had every little detail considered. I love how Dumbo is a permanent fixture on the ship.
The not so little detail that’s a fixture of the ship? There are over 1,450 “cast and crew” members. What that means, is that if you need something, there’s someone (or 5 someones) there to help.
The Sleeping Arrangements
Fitting 5 people in one stateroom can be tricky. On most ships, staterooms can’t accommodate a family of five without an upgrade. First of all I was ecstatic when I heard we didn’t need to get 2 staterooms, second of all, I was amazed when I walked in and saw how the room was set up. At first I thought we’d been put in the wrong room. I could not figure out how the couch would pull out and assumed there wasn’t a bed there. But I could see that there was a Murphy bed in the wall.
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When we came back later that night and our room was turned down, I almost died of excitement (and I’m not overstating that, I really love bunk-beds). The couch and the wall above it were transformed into an awesome set of bunk-beds and the ceiling above revealed a constellation of stars!
Our side of the room? First of all, I’m a pillow and mattress snob – and I slept like a baby. Cozy bed, and the perfect pillows. There is also a thick drape/curtain that pulls out in between the master bed and the kids area of the room. I could put all 3 kids to bed on their side of the room, and pull the drape and read on my side of the room. It was perfect.
Furthermore here’s what you wake up to:
The Disney Fantasy The Water Slide
You know that whoever came up with this water slide idea is like the Disney Imagineer of the year. Word to their mother! More details on the Aqua Duck over here.
The slide itself juts out just a bit over the edge of the boat and circles the upper decks. If I would have let them, my 2nd and 3rd grader would have stayed on that slide from sun-up to sun-down.
The Disney Fantasy’s pools and water play areas were amazing. The Aqua Lab was cool for my elementary aged kids, but what I really loved was Nemo’s Reef for my 3 year old. I’m big on containment. There’s one way in and one way out so keeping track of her in there was easy. Here she is plugging up the holes in Bloat the Pufferfish.
I don’t have any pictures, well, because I’d left all of my belongings in my locker, but the treatment rooms in their spa are the most amazing things I’ve seen. Big huge windows looking out over the ocean. Gorgeous!
I did acupuncture for the first time in my life. It was probably the most relaxing thing I’ve ever done. I’m pretty sure it made me pass out.
More this week:
The Food (aka the reason for my food baby), The Entertainment, The Private Island, Child Care, Tips for Making it Affordable and the question on all paranoid moms mind? What happens if there’s a hurricane?