I’m usually up for a traveling adventure with my young kids, but taking a cruise had me nervous.
Oh, I’d cruised before! My husband and I had taken a couple before we brought children into the world and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. It’s so nice to have someone else do the cooking and cleaning for a change. I guess that’s why they say a cruise is a Moms dream vacation!
But I worried about our family being crammed into a tiny room with no personal space. I cringed at the idea of our kids having to sit through an hour long formal dinner every night, and I was also concerned about the little kids being bored.
Having just returned from a 3-day cruise to The Bahamas aboard the Disney Wonder, I now know I had nothing to fear! A cruise vacation with young children is possible aboard Disney Cruise Line!
Disney is all about making your cruise magical no matter the age of everyone in your group. There’s truly something for everyone, whether you’re coming on board with a baby or traveling with just your spouse or friends!
There’s a specific reason I like to vacation with Disney and that’s their high level of service. Disney has extremely high standards when it comes to how guests are treated and what they are exposed to. They understand that vacationers are spending hard earned dollars to be with them, so they make everything practically perfect in every way! They do this better than any other company I’ve seen!
I found this same standard to be true with Disney Cruise Line. Everywhere we went we were greeted with smiles and offers to assist us. Windows, floors, and hallways were being cleaned constantly. And yet, they could have cared less about the mess my kids were making at the dinner table. ‘Please don’t worry, just enjoy!’ is what I was told after apologizing for my one year olds pasta disaster.
Those nervous about sleeping in tiny rooms on board need not worry! We were floored the first time we walked into our verandah cabin! Unlike our previous cruise staterooms, we actually had space to move around! There was a living area that converted to a kids sleep zone, which could be completely curtained off. There were also two bathrooms; one with a shower/tub and sink and another with a toilet and sink. I believe Disney Cruise Line is the only fleet that boasts such a feature!
Once our kids were in bed for the night my husband and I could leave the light on in our bedroom area without disturbance. We could even take turns coming and going from the room to enjoy some adult entertainment without waking the sleepers! Every morning our stateroom was tidied and each evening we’d return to chocolates and turned down beds. Talk about the royal treatment!
Classic Disney songs played throughout the ship as we wandered shops and walked down staircases. Mickey Mouse and Cinderella were seen greeting excited guests in the main atrium, and 3D theatrical releases like ‘Moana’ were being shown daily in the Buena Vista Theater.
If Broadway is your thing, you’re in for a real treat! Nightly productions can be enjoyed in the Walt Disney Theater, where tales as old as time can be enjoyed and toys come to life in sensational musical numbers! There’s even a condensed version of Frozen for Olaf and Elsa fans! Please note that shows may vary depending on ship and sail dates.
My two boys quickly became obsessed with the Oceaneer Club and Oceaneer Lab. This is a special part of the ship where you can check your children in for hours of fun and group led activities while they’re taken care of by Disney cast members – and it’s included in the price of your cruise! Note: Your children (3-12) do need to be potty trained to stay here solo, but there are Open House hours daily where you can join them for some fun.
There’s something for even the youngest sailor aboard Disney Cruise Line! “it’s a small world” nursery is availible to watch children aged 6 months to three years so that Mom and Dad can get in some ‘me’ time! Counsellors will take the greatest care with your littles as they participate in crafts, games, or nap time! Note: The cost is $9.00 an hour and must be booked in advance.
There are pools on board. There is a baby splash zone on board. There are water slides. There are fooseball tables and shuffleboard stations on deck. You can watch Disney movies outside while you swim. Nothing to do with the kids? Oh no, there was too much to do! We didn’t have the time to enjoy it all!
I’m happy to report that the dining aboard Disney Cruise Line exceeded my expectations! Whether you’re a fancy foodie or prefer comfort classics, there’s truly something for everyone!
I dined on everything from lamb and salmon to shrimp pasta and herb crusted chicken. From cheesecake to beignets, there were multiple dessert options for every sweet tooth during meal times. If chicken strips and fries are your thing, I suggest you get your fill while you sail – they were delicious! Your waiter will even turn your blob of ketchup into a Mickey Mouse head! Even your pickiest eater will fine something to munch on through out the day.
Disney Cruise Line participates in something called ‘Rotational Dining.’ This means that you never eat in the same restaurant two nights in a row. We moved from Tiana’s Place, to Tritons, to Animators Palate, each with their own unique theme, menu, and entertainment! Our wait staff came with us, which meant there was always a familiar face waiting to serve us at our table.
Cabanas, the buffet, provided everything you could want for breakfast or lunch. Waffles with strawberries and peaches, made-to-order omelettes, pastries and bacon, Disney Cruise Line knows how to start the day right!
And remember, all of this food is included in the price of your cruise. You can eat as much as you’d like and it won’t cost you an extra penny! The only extras you’ll have to add on are alcoholic drinks or specialty snacks, such as popcorn at the theater.
I didn’t expect to become so attached to the Disney Cruise Line experience in just three days, but my heart sank as we walked off that ship. I felt as though we were leaving behind family and I wasn’t yet ready to let go.
Yes, a cruise vacation with young children is possible – thanks to Disney Cruise Line!
‘See you real soon’ they said, as they waved us down the gang plank with Mickey Mouse hand gloves. I hope so! We’ll certainly do what we can to make this magic happen again.
We were invited to attend Disney Social Media Moms 2017, which was a land and sea experience. We were given a discounted rate and special perks but otherwise paid for our vacation. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.