I just got back from the Disney Magic Cruise and I wanted to share my experiences with all of you.
I am aware that Disney Cruises are not on a dime, but we were able to book an incredible deal for this trip at 25% Off. We also sailed from New York, which gives families the option to drive and save money on plane tickets.
We booked 41 cabins with the Entertain Kids On A Dime group. The agents I used were Deborah Goldberg and Sandra Pappas from Click The Mouse and they were amazing to deal with.
This was my 4th Cruise, Darren’s 2nd Cruise, and the Kid’s 1st time on a ship. This was our first Disney Cruise.
We decided to do the drive and save money on airfare. My husband had to work so we didn’t leave until 3pm. We decided to stop in Binghamton, NY just passed Syracuse. We found a really clean, cheap Microtel Hotel off the highway. It included breakfast for our family. My daughter was excited because there was a microwave and popcorn down in the lobby. She got to eat her popcorn in bed. It was a great experience to stay there.
The next morning we drove three hours to New Jersey. We stayed at the Hampton Inn in Ridgefield Park, New Jersey. Many of the families that drove stayed there. We were able to get a deal for a nights stay with breakfast and were able to park our cars there for the week. We also had a bus take us to and from the boat.
We were able to spend the day in New York City. You can take a bus from the hotel or a cab to the city. We went to Serendipity 3 to have their famous Frozen Hot Chocolate (my favourite) and to Dylan’s Candy Bar just up the street. Darren’s favourite show is Saturday Night Live, so we headed over to the NBC Store in the Rockefeller Center to check out the cool SNL paraphernalia.
At night, I got to reunite with my friends from New Jersey that I haven’t seen in 10 years. All of our kids swam in the indoor pool at the Hampton Inn. I was also able to meet many of the Entertain Kids On A Dime families staying in the hotel. We literally all took over the hotel. Breakfast was hilarious. If I was single, and I had to sit with all of these excited families ready for a Disney Cruise, I would have cried. LOL!
A greyhound bus came to pick us up to take us to the ship. We filled an entire bus! Once the families got settled on the boat, they came to meet Sandra, Deborah, and my Family, in one of the lounges on our ship. We made each family a gift bag. In my loot bags I gave each kid Mickey or Minnie Ears, pirate patches for the pirate party, and crayons. Deborah and Sandra gave each family a Click The Mouse bag with Disney Colouring sheets, and an on board credit!
We sailed on a 7 day cruise on the Disney Magic. Our schedule was 2 days sailing, Castaway Cay (Bahamas), Disney World (Florida), and another 2 days sailing. Our boat had a Pirate Themed Party, Halloween On The High Seas, and Marvel Day at sea.
The Ship had a kid’s pool, a medium sized pool, a splash pad, and two jacuzzis in the family area. There were two water slides on the boat. One was really scary and the other catered to the younger crowd.
If your kids are in the kids club, you can venture over to the adult area. There is a pool, jacuzzi, and a spa. It is really relaxing to hang out there.
There was a kid’s dress-up boutique on the ship. For extra money, you can glam your son or daughter up like a knight or a princess. We didn’t go there, because my daughter wanted to get her nails done at the regular spa.
There were a few lounges and two movie theatres on the ship. For a few dollars, you can purchase popcorn and take it into the theatre with you.
There was a sports area on the ship, with a basketball court, and table games.
The gift shops on the ship was like visiting a Disney Store. It was actually quite dangerous to go in there! Our kids got us to buy them a few things. It is great place for gifts and to kill time before the shows!
There are kid’s clubs on the ship from age three to teenager. If your child is under three, there is a nursery option but there is a cost.
My kids are 5 and 7 years old. If they wanted free time, I would put them in the Oceaner’s Club. There are scheduled activities running all day and night. Kids can also have free time colouring, playing on iPads, playing video games, watching Disney movies, and playing in Andy’s Room on the twirly slide.
There was so much entertainment on this ship. There were family game shows, performers, movies playing in the theatre, character meet & greets, bingo, dance parties, and more. The plays were by far the most impressive. They were broadway caliber. My favourite show was Tangled The Musical.
On one of the nights we had a pirate party. We came to our state room to find bandanas sitting on our beds. We had a dance party on deck with the characters, and the party ended in fire works.
HALLOWEEN ON THE HIGH SEAS
Our ship celebrated Halloween throughout the week. There were two opportunities to trick or treat and we came home with so much candy. They left us treat bags on our bed, and we dressed up in the atrium for a big party. It has been a week since I have been home, and I have already plowed through my kids chocolate.
MARVEL DAY AT SEA
Marvel Day by far was my favourite day of sailing. I walked through the boat and thought I was at Comicon. Some adults went so crazy with their costumes; painting their body green like the hulk or dressing in full superhero garb. Kids were in costumes or in Marvel clothing.
The food was branded and the menus were in theme. There were meet and greets with the Superheroes all day and night. All day they played Marvel Movies in the theatre. I finally saw Guardians Of the Galaxy. It is really a good movie, and I do happen to like Chris Pratt lol!
The best thing I saw was the stunt show on the deck. The characters I remember seeing were: Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Spider-Man, Dr. Strange, Loki, Black Widow, and Characters from Guardians of The Galaxy. We watched fighting scenes and characters were hanging from ropes. The night also ended in a beautiful fireworks show. It was incredible.
I really enjoyed the food on the ship. My daughter is a picky eater and they accommodated her.
We would eat the buffet breakfast in the morning. They had everything you can imagine. Mickey shaped waffles, eggs, bacon, yogurts, cereals, fruit, pancakes, pastries and loads of other stuff.
We either ate lunch at one of the concession stands out by the pool or the buffet restaurant.
The concession stands were a sandwich and salad shop, a shawarma station, a pizza parlour, and a burger place.
In the lunch buffet for the kids, they had chicken fingers, fries, mac and cheese, plain or tomato sauce pasta, and would sometimes have fun kiddie foods like corn dogs. I can’t speak for what all kids may like, because my carnivore daughter ate steak at lunch. Lol!
We rotated through three restaurants for our dinners and each night the menu was different.
The kids dinner food usually consisted of options like pasta, grilled chicken, mac and cheese, pizza, veggies, and meat balls.
Out of all of the restaurants, hands down The Animators Palate was the best one. As you are eating, the pictures on the wall turn animated with Disney cartoons. One of the nights they handed each of us a sheet and asked us to draw a character. Later in the evening your character starts walking across the screen. It was so cool!
When booking your cabin, you have a choice between booking an inside stateroom (no window), an ocean view (a large window), or a verandah (a balcony) room.
I chose the verandah room, but if you want to save more money then the other two options are better. I splurged, hoping the kids could sit outside on the balcony, but we barely used it.
• PORT CANAVERAL, FLORIDA
For Disney World lovers, Port Canaveral is your dream stop! It takes an hour and fifteen minutes on the bus ride to go to either Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, or Epcot. You can also park hop between these places. Your transportation and park tickets are included in the cruise rate.
You are given three fast passes to use where you want it.
I will be honest, Magic Kingdom was not my favourite place. I found it busy and the lines were insane. I chose it because my kids have never been there. Maybe I was getting spoiled from being on the boat, but I didn’t love it. However, my kids did love it, so I can’t complain. The magical experience wasn’t for me! Next year I’m going to try one of the other parks.
• CASTAWAY CAY, BAHAMAS
This by far is one of my favourite places. Castaway Cay is Disney’s private island in the Bahamas. Picture the branding of Disney World but on a beautiful island. You get off the ship and walk about 50 feet and get on a tram. When you get off the tram, there are free wagons to rent. The beach consists of family areas, an adults only area, a teen area, and a kid’s club area. There were two playgrounds built right inside the ocean. My kids liked the water slides. For the younger kids, there was a small splash pad to help you cool down. I didn’t book any excursions on the island.
We decided to rent an inflatable tube for the kids to share. We also took the kids on a water bike. I took my son out on the water next to the sting ray cove, and we saw like a hundred of them swim by us. He was so happy to see that.
SOME OF THE ENTERTAIN KIDS ON A DIME FAMILIES ON BOARD WITH US!
SAIL WITH US NEXT YEAR
We already our planning our cruise for next year with the Entertain Kids On A Dime Group!
10 families who sailed with us, have already booked their cruises for next year.
Next year’s Disney cruise will also have Marvel Day At Sea! This was our favourite day on the ship! Plus this time it will be a very Merrytime Christmas theme!
Next Year’s 7 Day Disney Cruise will leave November 10, 2018!
Day 1: New York
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: Castaway Cay, Bahamas
Day 5: Orlando (includes Disney park passes and transportation)
Day 6: At Sea
Day 7: At Sea
Day 8: New York
We probably won’t get a deal until this summer, but I want to give families a heads up to plan and save up for November of next year!
* If you want to be added to the email list for this cruise, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org and in the subject heading put “EKOAD LIST”.
Watch my Video Slide Show HERE