As a blogger, I may be compensated in some way (either pay, product, or experience) for sharing the post below All opinions are my own. ~Heidi
Last week, I shared my First Impressions of the Disney Cruise Line. I wanted to get them in writing while they were still fresh in my mind. Now, I’m ready to move on to our daily trip reports (thankfully, I kept a journal, or I’d probably not remember details!)
The Night Before
We flew down to Orlando the day before and spent the night at Disney’s Pop Century Resort. We took the bus over to Disney Springs that evening for dinner at our favorite Earl of Sandwich and to meet up with some friends – oh, and to check out The Ganachery (because I wanted to take some fancy chocolate along on the cruise). We were excited to see all the changes – while I’m not always a fan of change, I think the changes at Disney Springs are positive ones and I look forward to seeing that area continue to transform over our next several visits.
We got up the next morning around 7. Our bus wasn’t scheduled to pick us up until 12:30, so we had lots of time to kill. We took our time getting ready, then set out to find some breakfast. Our plan was to go to the Pop food court, but the reflection of Art of Animation in the water made it so tempting that we decided to walk over there. (The kids and I had visited this resort before, but Brian had never seen it, so I wanted to show him around.)
We had breakfast in their food court (which is very neatly themed around the 4 movies featured at the resort) – be sure to check back on Fridays, as I’ll be featuring all the food from our cruise trip over the next few months.
We enjoyed a nice, leisurely stroll back to our room, stopping to take pictures of the various larger-than-life icons at both resorts along the way.
Waiting for the Bus
We went back to our room and hung out for awhile, then finished up our packing and headed out. We grabbed some hot drinks and sat in the Pop food court for awhile to kill some time. Then, we found a bench in the lobby and decided to hang out there and wait. (Waiting is the worst! We just couldn’t wait for that bus to pull up and whisk us away for the week!)
Finally, the bus came! I was disappointed because it was full and Brian and I weren’t able to sit together; but, oh well. We had an entertaining driver who made the time pass quickly and, before we knew it, we were pulling in at the port.
Boarding the Ship
I wasn’t 100% sure what to expect with the boarding process, but it was fairly simple and quite fast. I did feel a bit unprepared and out-of-the-loop – like I had no idea what to do or where to go once we set foot on the ship! But, we found our room without much trouble, dropped off our carry-on bags, and went to search out Cabana’s for lunch.
We knew that Cabana’s was a buffet, but the size of it really surprised us! There was such a variety of food options to choose from. Needless to say, we found plenty to eat!
Our First Afternoon on Board
After lunch, we went back to our room to unpack. There were 2 closets in the room, so we each claimed one of those, as well as spreading out our bathroom necessities. We were told that the beds were nice and high – it was great to be able to slide all of our bags under there for the week – they were out of the way, yet easily accessible if we needed to grab something that we hadn’t unpacked.
We went to the required Safety Drill in the Walt Disney Theatre. It was similar to listening to the safety spiel on an airplane – the basics. God forbid anyone ever has to know those things! I’m afraid I’d panic and forget everything they told me!
I knew that Lori from Adventurer Mom was also on board. We were texting back and forth, and she and her friend stopped by our room to say, “Hi!” It was so nice knowing someone on board – especially a cruise expert like Lori (I had picked her brain and stalked her blog many times leading up to our trip!) Unfortunately, we didn’t get a picture together! I thought we’d bump into each other many times throughout the week. We saw them once later that evening, but I didn’t see them anymore throughout the trip. 😥 That just goes to show you exactly how large the ship is! I guess we’ll have to hook up on another cruise sometime!
We went back up to Deck 11 for the Deck Party with Mickey and friends. While this is certainly more geared toward children, I was excited to see my pal Mickey and know that we’d be sailing with him! We actually ended up on Deck 12, looking down. It was hard to get decent pictures because it was very crowded and the show was full of energy and movement.
We went back to our room and headed out to our verandah to watch as the ship sailed away from the port. I have to say that I had read many, many posts saying that it doesn’t matter what type of room that you choose or that, if you’re going on a cruise shorter than one week (we chose a 4-day for our first cruise), that a verandah room was a waste of time. I disagree! We spent a LOT of time out there, just watching the ocean and enjoying the scenery. It truly was one of my favorite places to be on the ship and I would totally opt for a verandah room next time as well!
We freshened up and changed clothes and set out for the evening. We had the late dining, so we headed back to the Walt Disney Theatre for The Golden Mickeys show. It was really good! We were impressed; but, of course, I would expect no less from Disney.
Our dinner that night was at Animator’s Palate. We loved the atmosphere and the food was good; but the best part was meeting our servers for the first time. We knew right away that they were special and that we’d enjoy getting to know them better throughout the rest of the cruise!
Our Towel Creation
Each night, upon returning to our stateroom, you are greeted with a turned down bed, a towel creation, some after-dinner chocolates, and your Navigator for the next day. We loved seeing what new towel creations we had each night.
While I’m calling it a “towel creation,” this one was actually made out of our blanket! Do you think it’s a crab?
We were rocked to sleep with the rocking of the boat, and anxious to see what the next day would hold . . .
Be sure to check back next week for our Day 2 report!