You might remember the adorable Hall family who won our Unfrozen Winter contest earlier this year by submitting a picture of their creative snowman. Check it out!
Roland J. Down Service Experts sent the family on a Disney Cruise and covered airfare for four. Rebecca and Bradley (Mom and Dad) took their two oldest children, Korbin and Brooke, on their Disney Cruise earlier this summer. This was Korbin and Brooke’s first cruise and Rebecca and Bradley had not been on a cruise in nearly 10 years.
“I can’t begin to tell you all the fun we had and how truly magnificent the whole experience was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a getaway we could have never done on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall parents were kind enough to give us their itinerary and some pictures from their incredible trip. If you’re interested in taking a Disney Cruise, or just curious what it’s all about, keeping reading for the highlights from the Hall’s experience.
We were on the water for a couple days (Saturday and Sunday) and then ported in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We had reservations for a Catamaran and went out with a few other families for the day. It was my kids’ first time snorkeling and they loved it. We got to see turtles and stingrays – it was probably the best experience of the whole cruise!
We went from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we were able to snorkel some more, went swimming, and bummed around on the beach. The water was truly that turquoise blue you always see in pictures – truly picture perfect.
We were on the ship all day Wednesday and then ported at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Private Island. The water was incredibly blue and had clear visibility underneath, so of course we had to do more snorkeling! They hid Mickey Mouses you could hunt for underwater, which made up for not having as many fish. They also had an 18 and older beach which we lounged around on while the kids played with other kids. The island had staff everywhere to help take care of the kids so we (Bradley and Rebecca) hung out and drank a daiquiri. It was just like a floating Disneyland!
It gives me goosebumps remembering everything on the cruise ship – everything was all so fun and unforgettable! Disney Cruise Line has a “Midship Detective Agency” where you choose the mystery you want to solve and they give you a card so you can record all your clues. When you hold the card up to a painting, it comes to life – it speaks to the group, tells you about the mystery you are solving, and gives you hints and directions. One mystery went on for two hours because we were chasing clues all over the cruise ship.
They are always playing first-run movies out near the pool so we got to see Finding Dory, Big Friendly Giant, Alice Through the Looking Glass, and Jungle Book. We also got to go on the Aqua Duct, which is a huge slide that zooms you up and down and swings you out over the boat!
We went Goofy Golfing and Disney Cruises also have games like foosball, basketball, and a Tween Club called Edge with things like scavenger hunts, get to you know you games, and more.
It’s really easy to see characters on the ship – you only have to wait a couple minutes versus 30 minutes or more at Disneyland. We got to see about two each day, and one day we hit five in a row! They also have several versions of the characters, such as Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The stateroom was incredible! We had an ocean view room with a
really big porthole and window seat. Our stateroom was a perfect size and all four of us were comfortable and never felt squished.
You rotate through three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has awesome flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the ceiling changes colors during your meal and Royal Court was very elegant and put me in mind of Cinderella. The menu is very gourmet and they have an awesome variety. My oldest tried everything, even the escargot at the Royal Court. (He thought it tasted like dirt!)
Animators Palette is animation-themed and they give you markers on your table so you can sketch a figure. They give you a tutorial on how to draw a figure, then they pick up the drawings and at the very end of dinner, they animate your drawings on the wall. It’s completely unexpected! They put them to music and position them in Disney films. Our daughter is our artist so she worked really hard on hers and was elated – the rest of us weren’t quite as polished
“We can't thank Service Experts enough for this once in a lifetime vacation,” Rebecca told us after they returned from their cruise. “I get emotional when I think about the whole experience. Submitting our picture to a contest I never thought would go anywhere, finding out we were a finalist, the stressful voting phase, the big announcement, planning and choosing which cruise, the elation of going and finally experiencing an unbelievable trip. It was such an amazing time living it all. We are so grateful!”
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