Departing from Galveston, my girls (age almost 3, three weeks shy, and 4.5 yrs) and I embarked on a 7-day cruise to Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica on the Disney Wonder over Christmas. This was an extra special cruise over Christmas with additional themed events and decorations throughout the cruise.
We booked this last-minute trip after finding out my husband’s work schedule. Since he was going to be working over Christmas, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to do something fun so we weren’t missing Daddy too much. He gave me the green light to book it, even though I know he would have loved to have come with us, and I jumped on it.
I was a little nervous about traveling solo with kids but Disney made this SO incredibly easy. All I needed to do was show up, and they did the rest – which was what I needed!
Embarkation Day went incredibly smooth. It was a LONG day, especially for kids that still nap (and a kid that doesn’t, but needs one anyways). However, the process and timing of everything was great. Check out my tips for Embarkation Day to make your cruise as seamless as possible.
We stayed in a Deluxe Verandah room with our own private balcony. We enjoyed the balcony quite a bit during our vacation. My youngest wanted to eat on the balcony ALL THE TIME!! We usually enjoyed a continental breakfast out there in the morning delivered by room service (no additional cost).
We stayed in stateroom 7124 located not too far from the Aft elevators. The location for us was wonderful since many of the areas we frequented were not too far from the Aft elevators – Cabanas, Buena Vista Theater, Oceaneer’s Club, and the dining restaurants (Tritans, Tiana’s Place, and Animator’s Palate).
Disney has really thought through lots of details of the ship. It was a well-designed room with lots of storage, the closet was huge and would easily store a larger stroller, and under the bed fit our suitcases. My oldest and I shared a bed, while my youngest had her own sofa bed. One of the best designs is that there is a curtain between the two areas allowing you some separation which was great for naptime.
The bathroom was split into two separate parts, both of which had sinks and mirrors. One had the toilet, and the other had the shower/bath combo. This was a nice feature especially if you have older children who need privacy.
Unlike some cruiselines that have minimal outlets and charging areas, I felt like Disney had plenty. There was an outlet on each side of the bed, with the alarm clock that had extra USB outlets. And then there were a handful of outlet options near the desk area which was great for charging cameras and laptops.
Recommendation: Hands down I would recommend a Verandah stateroom to anyone. The location of ours was excellent and the design was well thought out.
What I Loved About the Experience
- Easy with very little pre-planning needed. Disney has activities for all age groups (not just kids) to enjoy from morning to night, from first run Disney movies to crafts to live shows.
- Kid’s club was great (ages 3-12) and free to use with no reservations needed. Addy asked frequently to be dropped off. Olivia and I joined her sometimes during open house where parents and siblings could enter and play.
- Character meet-n-greets were plentiful – my kids favorites were the Disney princesses. We were able to sign up for the Princess Gathering where 4 princesses were taking pictures at a (free) ticketed event.
- Option of buying professional photo packages, or also allowed to take your own pictures.
- Service we received throughout the ship was excellent. ALL, and I mean EVERY SINGLE crew member was extremely helpful and accommodating in every request. The service we received at meals was perfect. The wait staff helped encourage my kids to take more bites, they cut up their meat for them, and even cut up my steak for me when I had a sleepy kid in my lap. They are trained very well to look for ways to make your experience wonderful.
Bottom line: I would highly recommend Disney Cruises for kids and adults of all-ages. It was the perfect amount of Disney sprinkled on a fantastic cruise experience with a variety of entertainment, wonderful kid’s clubs, and areas for just adults. It would be a great vacation option for both families with young kids and multi-generational trips with grandparents and other adults alike.
If you want to hear more about your Disney Cruise options, I would be happy to talk with you about our family’s experience. As a Disney Cruise specialist, I can assist you in creating the perfect family vacation.
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