Days at Sea: A Disney Cruise Line Report - PassPorter.com
PassPorter.com
Award-winning travel guidebooks
Home Florida - Walt Disney World Caribbean - Disney Cruise Line California - Disneyland Resort Anywhere and Everywhere! Travelers Store Message Boards PassPorter's Club Help!
  About Us  |  Customs Office   |   Register Your Book   |   Book Updates   |  Newsletter  |  Articles  |  Photos  |   Follow Us on
       LINKS
       ARTICLES
DCL Planning Articles

DCL Traveling Articles

DCL Cruising Articles

DCL Touring Articles

DCL Dining Articles

DCL Making Magic Articles
A Disney Cruise Line Loyalist's Experience on Royal Caribbean
Adventure Is Out There
Caching in on a Cruise
Celebrating a Birthday Onboard Disney Cruise Line
Couples Choice Spa
Cruising at the Holidays
Cruising the Norwegian Fjords
Days at Sea
Disney's Inaugural Mediterranean Cruise
Spas at Sea
The Pixar Touch - The Making of a Company by David A. Prince
Zip-a-Dee-Zip-Line

DCL General Travel Articles

View all PassPorter articles
PassPorter's
Article Tools
Print Article
Download PDF
View Photos
Visit Forum
Read Comments on This Article

Days at Sea: A Disney Cruise Line Report

Disney Cruise Line photo
by Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 12-23-2011
  

Cool Tip: Click here to get a FREE PDF version of this article, fully formatted to print and put into your PassPorter Deluxe Binder!


Filed in Articles > Disney Cruise Line > Making Magic  

When we took our first cruise with Disney all the way back in May 2004, there was no such thing as a day at sea for us, as it was just a three-night cruise.


It was a very different story on our most recent cruise on the Wonder to Alaska. With just three ports of call on our itinerary, we’d be enjoying three whole days at sea, a rare treat.

Compare that for a moment with our inaugural cruise of the Mediterranean back in 2011, when we’d had 11 days on board, with only three of those as days at sea. Each of those days ended up being more of a recovery day, as we were packing in so many ports of call during the rest of our time on board.

My first thought on that cruise was, “How on earth are we going to fill up days at sea? Won’t we be bored?” I quickly learnt that I couldn’t have been more wrong if I’d tried! If anything, the days at sea end up being just as packed as the days when you’re on dry land. There’s a myriad of activities to pick from, or of course you can just spend the day lounging around, enjoying the surroundings of your home-away-from-home.

That’s one of the great beauties of cruising. You can decide how much, or indeed how little, you want to fill your free time up. If you don’t want to do anything, there are lots of places to just relax and watch the world go by. Of course, there’s your stateroom, but you may want to get out from there – I know I do, as too long in one room and I start to feel cramped. Want a place to just sit and read? Check out the various public decks of the ship, and the chances are you’ll find somewhere to hang out. If you find the higher decks busy, try either deck 4 or maybe deck 10 on the Wonder or Magic, or Deck 12 on the Dream.



Disney Wonder - docked in Skagway photo
Disney Wonder - docked in Skagway

The Wonder docked in Skagway - photo by chezp

Maybe the weather’s too hot or too cold for you? No problem. There are plenty of places to just chill inside. You can see if you can snag chairs by the atrium or one of the decks overlooking it from above. Adults may enjoy some alone time away from the younger members of the family in some of the wonderful lounges on board each ship. We prefer the Cove Cafe to the lounges inside, mainly because you can still watch the world go by.

So what about if you want to be a bit more active, and want to sample some of the activities on board? Your first step should really be to check out your daily Navigator, delivered to your stateroom the night before. We always spend a good five or ten minutes devouring the information in it, and deciding what we want to do the next day. For us, it’s simple, as we’re usually most interested in the adults-only activities, not having any children, but I’d be lying to say that we never look at the character meet and greets!

Activity can mean different things to different people, but if you want to stay physically fit, you can walk or jog your way around deck four, or have a full work-out in the spa. Swimmers can enjoy the on board pools, or perhaps take it easy soaking in the hot tubs. We get enough activity in our day-to-day lives, so our idea of indulgence is to spend some well-earned time in the ever-so relaxing Rainforest in the spa.

Perhaps you want to exercise your mind instead? There are usually a wide range of seminars on board, perhaps related to your ports of call, or maybe more to do with wining or dining. It’s worth keeping a look out for more fun activities as well, such as drawing animated characters, which we really enjoyed on the Alaskan cruise, or making towel animals.

If you’re new to the ship you’re cruising on, I can thoroughly recommend taking some time to learn more about your surroundings. That may be in the shape of an organised tour, as Disney tends to run a couple of tours showcasing what you can find on board. It’s exceptionally useful to help find your feet.

Let’s not forget that there are also a range of movies showing on board, either at one of the ship’s theaters, or in your stateroom. If you’re on the Dream, you can even pause, rewind, and fast forward those films, which is a great touch. There’s something very unique about watching a movie at sea, and they’re not necessarily re-runs. We saw Pirates of the Caribbean III on our Mediterranean cruise when it had just been released at the box office.

And if your wallet needs some activity, the shops are open whenever the ships are at sea, so you can always do some window shopping! Just be careful if you plan on doing laundry when you’re not in port, as this is when the on board laundry facilities tend to be at their busiest. We got up exceptionally early to ensure that we could get a washer, and dryer, and we were glad we did!

Fine dining is never far from your mind when you’re on a cruise, and usually at least one of the main dining rooms is open for breakfast and lunch on your at-sea days. We love the opportunity to sample the fine dining room, either Triton’s, Lumiere’s, or the Royal Palace on each ship for breakfast. It’s just a nice treat to be able to order a la carte and be served at your table. Equally, your at sea days can be used to sample the casual dining options that you may not otherwise get the chance to enjoy.

I’m sure there are plenty of other activities I’ve missed here, but you get the idea. There is literally something for everyone on an at-sea day. The day is yours to enjoy as you want. The only problem you may have is being able to cram everything in that you’d like to! I know that’s certainly the problem we have on every day we’re at sea. I doubt very much you’ll find yourself being bored at any point!


Disney Magic - Topsider's buffet photo
Disney Magic - Topsider's buffet

The buffet welcoming you aboard the day of departure of the first Mediterranean cruise. - photo by chezp




About the Author:
Cheryl and husband Mark live in England and love to travel, particularly to Disney, and they have made numerous visits to destinations across America and Europe. They recently completed their tour of every Disney theme park around the world, which culminated in their visit to Japan, including the Tokyo Disney Resort. Click here to view more of Cheryl's articles!

Related Links:
Gardens of The World Tour - A Guided Tour During Epcot's International Flower and Garden Festival last updated 5/28/2009
Star Wars Weekends - Feel the Force at Disney's Hollywood Studios last updated 6/4/2009
Unusual Photo Opportunities - Getting Unique Photos at Disney last updated 6/18/2009
The Osborne Spectacle of Lights - Disney's Hollywood Studios last updated 7/6/2009
Dashing Through The ... Snow? - Sleigh Rides at Walt Disney World last updated 11/30/08




Reader Comments:


View all comments in forum thread

So what do you think? Click here to share your comments, feedback, and experiences on this article and topic!

(Note: You must be a member of our PassPorter Message Board Community to leave comments. Join today for free!)




Updated 12-23-2011 - Article #761 



Read additional articles from PassPorter.com

Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter, PassPorter News, published for more than 58,000 opt-in subscribers worldwide. As an added bonus for subscribing, you will receive a 20% discount coupon for the PassPorter Store -- no catch!

E-mail Address:

First Name:

E-mail Format:
-Text/Don't Know  

-HTML

 
 

We respect your privacy and never sell or rent our subscriber list. Subscribing will not result in more spam! We guarantee it.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Copyright 1999-2014
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.

       SEARCH
       LEARN MORE
Learn More With Our Award-Winning Guidebooks


 

RSS Test PassPorter Community - Boards & Forums on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel - Planning Your Disney Cruise Voyage
PassPorter Community - Boards & Forums on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disn...
Get onboard and share your plans and ask your questions about sailing the high seas on the Disney Cruise Line! Forum sponsored by MouseEarVacations.com


St. Petersburg, Russia Next Year
by modisney
23 Jul 2014 at 5:51pm
With all the goings on over there right now what do folks think DCL will do in 2015; stop there as planned, find an alternate stop and where do you...
(click title above to view replies)

Dream drydock
by Tracy Lilly
23 Jul 2014 at 12:10am
When the Dream goes into drydock Sept./Oct. 2015, will there be any changes/improvements made or just maintenance work done?
(click title above to view replies)

decorations in November
by Tracy Lilly
22 Jul 2014 at 10:58pm
My family and I are cruising on the Dream (11/16/15; 4-night Bahamas). Will there be any holiday decorations/character costumes onboard?
(click title above to view replies)

Castaway Cay 5k? Available on all cruises?
by jacqueo
22 Jul 2014 at 10:39pm
I keep reading about the 5k and I'm curious... I'm not cruising on the one cruise that the website mentioned that is in conjunction with the 1/2...
(click title above to view replies)

Booked 1st Cruise yesterday, leaving in 25 days...few questions!
by PUSH_Fan
22 Jul 2014 at 7:17pm
-Has anyone handled their own luggage on the DCL transfer from the airport? Meaning picked it up at luggage claim and took it to the bus. Yes, I...
(click title above to view replies)



Total Visits: 6074


PassPorter ~ 1998-2014 ~ 16 Years of Making Dreams Come True!
Publishers of bestselling travel guidebooks and proud recipients of 13 national book awards
About PassPorter
About Us
Site Map
Press
Privacy Policy
Images & Artwork
Guidebooks
About
Previews
Buy
Reviews
Updates
Features
News & Updates
Articles
Podcasts
Photos
Message Boards
Newsletter
Concierge Desk
Desktop
Trips
Books & E-Books
Tips
Settings
Customs Office
Register Books
Book Updates
Contests
Checklists
Help & Info
Finding Answers to Questions
Help Desk
Using Your PassPorter Forum
Store Customer Service
E-Mail Us
Follow Us
PassPorter.com Front Page (Updated Daily!)
PassPorter Newsletter (weekly and free)
Latest Posts
Facebook
Pinterest
YouTube Channel
Questions? Check our Site Map and visit our Help Desk to learn how to contact us online, by e-mail, and by phone.
Please feel free to link to this page so that other vacationers can find it.