Trip Report Day 4: Second Day at Sea More Waves and More Fun

015de0749fdaa818ef121ace7b752ce807ed4ab852So, yes this is the most drawn out trip report ever but it is keeping the memory and magic alive for me as I revisit each day we had on one of my favorite vacations ever. I hope the anticipation for each new day is not too much for all of you readers! I would love to hear from you about your trip or about your questions and how you are enjoying reading this trip report. You can comment or email me at dolewhipped@gmail.com (just think I may be able to write quicker with a bit of cheerleading!)

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Okay, so now on to day 4 of this trip which is our second full day and another full day at sea. If you remember from Day 3 (or want to remind yourself click HERE) we were going around a tropical depression and the seas were a bit rougher than normal. So, today the 01db60955c588ca699a92207ee53a17fd26a53d611_00001ship was rocky. I did not mind it. It was not crazy rocky and did not disturb walking or anything just made you feel like you were being rocked in your sleep type thing. I would say 99% of the guests had no issues with it and the 1% that did were maybe a tad dramatic (I heard stories afterwards on our cruise Facebook page that someone who had an interior room on a lower deck had slept on a lounge chair by the pool). Now, that is a bit non-productive as the higher you go the more it rocks but if it makes you feel better and they let you – why not sleep by the pool? So, it was a tad overcast but that did not stop the fun. We actually had one of the best days on the ship.

First, we started off with some room service for breakfast. We had decided with our friends the night before since the weather was not going to be as good as it was the rest of the week this would be the perfect day to sleep in, have room service and all huddle up in one room and watch a movie. It was the perfect morning.

Since we had built up an appetite (sea air and all) we headed to Cabanas for lunch and had a vast array of choices as always at Cabanas, along with several glasses of POG
juice. Excellent way to kick off the afternoon.01ed5e7e03650d8ced6764d4afe0c9d77cc2491f7f_00001

When we finally decided to join the rest of the ship we did something I had never done on a cruise ship in the past. We played BINGO! Bingo was in the D Lounge (though note the Navigator schedule had a mistake and said the Buena Vista Theatre so note to everyone if you are somewhere and no crew is around it may be a printed mistake). We figured it out though and we had a blast playing BINGO. Now, couple of BINGO things to note, the crew that runs it makes it fun. BINGO is not free and there are a few packages to choose from and you can do 0132759c33e725450fa4d4870285c1b448c4d7d9ab_00001one card or many and you can do it electronically or the old fashion where you poke the chad out. We decided to save our money and do it the old fashion way and bought two cards (one for each of us because on the first day we played BINGO only myself and one other companion thought it was worth it – this quickly changed and by the end of the week the whole group was playing!) So two cards were $40 and they had six games on each card. The ball scrambling machine is named Betty and when someone is having bad BINGO luck they yell out “SHAKE IT UP BETTY” and all the kids laugh (and a few adults). So, you hear “SHAKE IT UP BETTY” a lot. Oh, by the way, BINGO is open to all ages but because actual money is won if your kid is under 18 and wins you, as the adult, gets to take the winnings. If you want to give it to your child or if you want to keep it, well that is up to you. They also will randomly between games do a random name draw for prizes and though we did not win BINGO we DID win the random name. All of a sudden on the screen was my sailing companion and BINGO partner’s name! He graciously gave me most of the prize because I was more excited than probably I should have been. It was a tote bag that had several branded Disney Cruise Line gifts such as a hat, pen, lip gloss, and a phone charger. I never win anything so even though I did not win, I got the winnings and felt like a true champion.

The main show in the Walt Disney Theatre that evening was “Wishes” and I was looking forward to it and it did not disappoint. It was about three best friends that were graduating and each going their own way in life and before they do they go on a magical journey down a wishing well. Very cute and had a great message for everyone.

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Dinner that evening was at Animator’s Palate and I was looking forward to it because though we were assigned there twice during the week, I knew the second time we were scheduled there we would be eating at Palo’s – so this was my one time at AP. I started my meal with the Baked Potato and Cheddar Cheese Soup and one of their specialty drinks a Bora Shake (Piña Colada, fresh Bananas and Blue Ocean). For my entree I had Ginger-Teriyaki dusted Angus beef Tenderloin with Wasabi Mashed Potatoes with 014bea22c2aab625799283d2f14002210198c5d4c0Bok Choy and a Tamarind–Barbecue Reduction. I can not recommend this dish more if I tried. I challenge you to not love it. It was perfectly cooked and seasoned and nothing like anyone expects from meals on a cruise ship. Bravo Disney. For dessert I went with a classic Mickey Bar. The entertainment and interaction was great and I enjoyed almost every moment. The moments I did not enjoy were unfortunately we were seated next to a large family of about 15 people and several small children. We choose late dinner, on purpose, as early dinner is usually better for the little ones. These little children were definitely tired and cranky and were throwing a fit. There were 3 or 4 that were throwing things off the table and screaming and running around and into the servers and it was quite the scene. But, luckily for the parents and grandparents of these kids, they were able to ignore it and continue their good time without worrying about anything or anyone else. For the rest of us seated near them it was not as easy. I felt really bad for the little ones because they were just tired, so you know, note to self maybe try early dinner if you have lots of little ones in your group or rotate one adult to watch them sleep each night. I am sure there is a better option for them and everyone else. SIGH. Moving on, but you all know what I am saying.

Next, we went to an adults only show! Ooh La La. No, nothing like that as this is Disney but it was in The Tube and it was the Ventriloquist and she was great. It was very crowded and hard to hear and see at points as it is an active bar but we got to see her again later that week as well and highlight of the week was her act.

So, though the day started slow and lazy it definitely got going and we did a lot that day! We did lots of new stuff like BINGO and adults only late shows (as usually I am zzzz’ing pretty early on cruises – again the sea air) but had a great time doing it all! Tomorrow Tortola and another GREAT day on the Disney Fantasy.

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Want to catch up?

Check Out

Day 1: The Who, What, Whens and Hows of our Disney Extravaganza Trip

Day 2: It Begins…With a Bang and a New Restaurant Experience

Day 3: First Day at Sea and It Was Filled with Fun, Food and Some Waves

 

 

Trip Report Day 3: First day at Sea and it was filled with Fun, Food, and some Waves!

So, here we are again (yes I know you have had to wait for the next installment of this super trip report of my 7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise on the Disney Fantasy but well, life has been busy!) Forgive me and please read on!

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So, today we were ready for some fun at sea. I love the “At Sea” days because you have all the time in the world to really enjoy the ship. Let me start by saying we were told early01d4b27ce1137efca101de1a6068d4ffe79fcd8b6b_00001 on that we were sailing through a tropical depression and things would be rocky and the Captain would do everything he could to avoid it, but be ready because when this ships a rockin’, well you need to be ready. So, let me address this now for all those in fear of bad weather on ships. First, did it get rocky? Yes, the ship definitely hit back and forth and rolled along. We only got a little rain and mist but it was a bit overcast all day. Not enough to stop the fun but just enough to make it a more indoor day than a sun filled pool day. We did not encounter any sea sickness, we did not ever have any fear or felt unsafe, and when things happen that mean you can not be outside on deck as much as usual it is not always a bad thing. Disney steps it up and entertains you even more than usual and we were loving seeing extra fun things being added – like oh hey Cinderella is hanging out with us while we are waiting for dinner and Peter Pan is skirting around playing too! It was too much fun to watch the unscheduled and unplanned characters just hanging about and the little ones running up to them.

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We enjoyed breakfast at Cabanas and then watched an afternoon show of “BFG” (“Big Friendly Giant”) that was out in theaters at the time. I do not think this movie did too well at the box office but we loved it and if you have a chance to see it then you should. It was super cute and beautifully done. Tonight was also the formal night and the Captain’s Reception. We enjoyed a cocktail at the reception and walking around seeing people dressed in their finest as about half were and the other half were dressed like they were on a cruise. We fell into the half that were cruising and dressed nice but did not lug our cocktail attire and tuxes on the ship. We have done that before and just find it a lot of work and extra luggage. Some love the dressing up and for them I say GO FOR IT! I loved seeing the people dressed and the kids in the mini-tuxes!

Tonight we saw the show “Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular” in the Walt Disney Theatre as the evening show and spectacular it was! We loved it and it was one of my favorite all-time shows on a Disney Cruise. Do not skip this night for sure or you will regret it! There was nothing but fun and singing and dancing and we all enjoyed it.

Dinner tonight was at Royal Court and it was lovely. Outside of Palo, this may have been my favorite dinner. I had Belle’s French Onion Soup that was full of Gruyère cheese 01d3e1743187765893b815ef1cfc8e5e74bb85dac1croutons and they were excellent. I chose the chateaubriand-roasted filet steak with potatoes and green beans and an excellent béarnaise to top of the filet. Everything was cooked perfectly and I am hungry just thinking about it! We splurged on the Grand Marnier souffle for dessert and no regrets as it was infused with orange zest and nothing like you would expect on a cruise ship serving so many. It was as if they were each done very specific to each person. I personally love the decor in the Royal Court and enjoyed this evening so much!

 

 

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Trip Report Day 2: Get on the Ship and Get Yourself Ready for Some Fun and Some Tropical Drinks, Depressions and Sun.

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So, we woke up the next morning raring to go and so we went downstairs and got to indulge in the special, complimentary breakfast for Platinum members at the Hilton. It was 01b0257b10bf783129c1829bef0a768280d2f81154good, just the usual eggs, bacon, waffles, muffins, etc. It was good and easy and a nice perk. After that we packed up leisurely because although we had a port arrival time for around 10am we knew that was just “suggested” and we decided based on others info and reviews that to us it was more important to avoid long check in lines and waiting around for nothing. So, we planned it perfect for us! We drove over to Port Canaveral,
returned the rental car to Budget, shuttled over to the Fantasy, got baggage handlers, went through security, checked in the special Castaway Club line and walked right on to the boat. It actually went that easy without any hiccups. We boarded the ship around noon and discussed telling the person who took our last name to announce and welcome a few options as we had a few last names going so we thought about being the “Awesome” family or the “Disney” family but in the end we went with all of our last names…next time.

01f170f9ba4d1e08b20f93e7e31074e8a0c75c84a4We had already decided to go to Enchanted Gardens for lunch. Everyone knows about Cabanas lunch but did you know Enchanted Gardens has a buffet on embarkation day? Well, they do and we did. Interesting enough when we boarded we asked a crew member where to go and he told us Enchanted Gardens was full and turning people away and over to Cabanas. We discussed amongst ourselves and decided to ask another crew member, who did say the same thing, but when we said what 014b49491c2858633e087d735d0bf13d1796c5c5afwould happen if we went anyway he said probably nothing! So, we went down and somehow lines were miscommunicated because it was only half full and no line. That was odd – I have no idea but clearly something got muddled. So, we were sat and went and had a great lunch with cold cuts, shrimp, salads, sides and yummy ice cream and lots of other desserts.

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After lunch, we headed to find our staterooms and get our Castaway Club gifts. This was our second cruise, so first as a CC member. The gift was AMAZING and seriously high value. I not only used the tote the whole week but have used it for several quick overnights since home. 017ab5edb39ff8da288e83dbc039616d6f8bdcb7aaAlso, we had brought our nice lanyard wallets we had gotten for the last cruise so we just switched out the lanyard so we could use our nice little key holder with a pocket but still have the CC lanyard. After, admiring our gifts my OCD husband insisted on unpacking and getting the luggage stored under the bed and everything in its place. I was glad we did 011bdc2aaa6200d0d6b36f2a694942688fcbc47b0cbut it was hard not to skip that and run crazy over the ship doing more exciting things than unpacking.

We had a Verandah room and it was exactly like the last room on the Dream, though turned the other day. I love the staterooms on Disney because they have adequate space and it makes it much nicer!

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After that we went to our own “Sail Away” Party on the back of the ship on the outdoor 0133227359f0e0da551aa3048d2f7dcbc1c0c75402deck of Meridian lounge, outside of Palo and Remy. They had the same area on the Dream and we enjoyed having cocktails there on the Dream at night and the servers on the Dream were fun and helpful so we looked forward to the same good times. We watched the ship sail off and enjoyed the beautiful weather and peace on the deck.

We went to “A Fantasy Come True” for the early show (since we had late dinner) and it was cute. It was a little “salesy” and we were a tad bit turned off at first but it got better and ended up being a cute show.

Dinner that night was at Enchanted Gardens, so since we already knew where we were going it was easy to get there! When we were seated there were already people at our table. What? On the Dream our party was our own table and it just did not occur to me that we would be seated with others. But, we were and though it was a little nervous and quiet at first it turned out great of course. They were very nice and we had a good time hearing about the different things they did and watching their teen son watch the clock to escape back to the teen club every night! So, food – yesssss! So, I skipped the appetizer that night and had a soup and salad because the Heirloom Tomato Soup is a must for me and the Romaine Wedge was also calling my name. I had for my entrée Slow Roasted Prime Rib: Thyme-roasted Vegetables, Double-baked Potato, Horseradish, and Natural Jus and it was amazing. I am not a huge Prime Rib fan and when it first came it was way too red for me so servers noted and brought me a bit more medium well version and I loved it. My husband had the pork tenderloin and one of the teens had the sea scallops and the rest of the table went prime rib. Everyone was very happy that night with their dinner choices and for dessert I chose the Esterhazy Cake because it mentioned almond meringue and I love almond dessert flavors. It was yummy and a good choice for me. Chocolate lovers would like the Sacher Torte and those at our table did!

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After dinner, a few of the group went to the 10:15 movie, “The Jungle Book” but I was being rocked to sleep. So, I went up to the adult only deck for a minute and watched the night waters and then turned in and slept so well it was like I was on vacation.

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Trip Report: The Who, What, Whens and Hows of our Disney Extravaganza Trip

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So, I am really excited to write my very first real trip report! I have wanted to do this so many times before but really it is a big undertaking that you plan a bit in advance and make sure you take lots of notes and pictures as you go! Otherwise not a great report, eh?

Scott dancing around like he did all week!

Scott dancing around like he did all week!

Who: My husband – Scott, one of our best friends and frequent podcast guest – Chris, two teenage boys that belong to Chris – named Tom and Ben (they have also been podcast guests if the names sound familiar!) Oh and me – one of your Dolewhippie ladies!

We all went together on the Disney Dream about two years ago on the 4 night and loved it. Ever since then we wanted to go again and do another cruise but a longer one! We decided to go on the 7 night Disney Fantasy and depending on schedules and availability we really wanted the Eastern Caribbean. One thing that we did this time, that was different from last time, was we decided we did not have to have connecting rooms and so therefore I could take advantage of a special Travel Agent rate. The reason I share this is because it also means we could not book or plan until the rates became available which is about 6-8 weeks or so prior to sailing. We

Tom, Chris and Ben ready to go in Tortola!

Tom, Chris and Ben ready to go in Tortola!

had limited time, based on so many different schedules, and so we had narrowed it down to one week we could go. So if a TA rate did not come out for July 30th sailing then we could not go. BOO! So we waited and watched and half planned (just in case!) and luckily I called on the right day and we got a balcony room and then went to book the second (regular rate) stateroom and got lucky by finding a GTY rate for a Verandah room so hooray savings all around! We hoped to be close but with a TA rate and a GTY rate your stateroom is assigned and you can not request anything at all, not even to be near. So, all we knew was both staterooms were on the Fantasy on July 30th and would have a balcony. We were thrilled!

We left and flew down to Orlando on July 29th (definitely arrive at least a day prior to sailing) and had a fun pre-cruise night at Disney Springs and ate at a new and now favorite restaurant (keep reading the trip report to find out more!)

We sailed on the Fantasy July 30th through August 6th and when we disembarked on the

Bay Lake Tower for a night!

Bay Lake Tower for a night!

6th we headed to Walt Disney World for two park days and one night at Disney. We stayed at a new to us resort which I have a review of coming (I will give this one away as it was Bay Lake Tower – so keep reading if you want to here what I thought and you may be surprised).

We left Orlando on Sunday night and went home to a lot of dirty laundry, happy fur babies and were so exhausted we could barely make it to the bed. It was an amazing trip and so many new and special things it definitely was an extravaganza! I hope you keep reading because there are so many things we did that were awesome and will definitely help you when planning your next Disney trip.

 

 

Podcast Episode 106: Tara’s Disney Cruise Line Trip Report

Join us this week as Tara tells us all about her latest Disney Cruise Line adventure!  Find out what new shows, food, and fun she experienced all aboard a fabulous Disney ship!

Happy listening!

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Podcast Episode 101: Disney Cruise Line Overview

If you have general questions about Disney Cruise Line or you’re just not familiar with them in general, then this is the episode for you!  We give you a taste of everything that Disney Cruise Line has to offer including the ships, the entertainment, shore excursions, and the awesome Castaway Cay!  If cruising is next on your list, then you won’t want to miss this!

Happy listening!

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Podcast Episode 79: Disney Cruise Line Budget Comparisons

Have you ever thought about how far your money will travel aboard a Disney cruise?  We’ve got the answer for you!  We break different ships and itineraries down by cost amount so you can get a great idea of how much cruise your budget allows.  We’re positive there’s a cruise out there for you!

Happy listening!

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Podcast Episode 77: Disney Cruises With Kids

If you’ve been dreaming of a Disney cruise but aren’t sure what’s on board for your children, then you’ll definitely want to tune in this week!  We discuss all the awesome things about Disney Cruise Line for infants, small children, tweens, and teens!  You’ll hear about the nursery, the kids clubs, and the teen hangouts.  We guarantee there’s something for everyone!

Happy listening!

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