What's more exciting than a Disney cruise? Being one of the very first guests aboard a brand new Disney ship! And that's just what I have the privilege of doing when I sail aboard the Christening Cruise (January 19-21, 2001) and the Inaugural Maiden Voyage (January 26-30, 2011). I will be documenting my adventures through video, photos, and notes, all of which can be found in this article. So please sail along with me as I discover the Disney Dream!
Christening Cruise Dates: January 19-21, 2011 Stateroom: 7022 (deluxe oceanview with verandah) Focus: Traveling with a child Highlights: Christening ceremony, kids clubs and activities
January 7, 2011 - I'm now less than two weeks away from seeing the Disney Dream in person, and I'm getting excited. I feel very lucky to be able to sail on both the christening cruise (first media cruise) AND the maiden voyage (first public cruise). I'm not aware of anyone else doing this! Also, I will be experiencing the ship in several different ways through these cruises -- as a mom, as a PassPorter author, and as a friend. I will have my 6-year-old son Alexander along for the christening cruise, so I'll be able to share his impressions (and my own thoughts about having him along). On the maiden voyage, I'll be sailing primarily for research, but I'll also be with friends, so I'll be able to speak from those points of view as well.I want to be sure to share this once-in-a-lifetime experience with anyone interested.
Staterooms have already been assigned for my cruises. I'll be in stateroom 7022 (a deluxe oceanview with verandah) for the christening, and in stateroom 7512 (a family oceanview) for the maiden voyage. And I expect to be able to tour other stateroom categories as well!
January 10, 2011 - Excitement is mounting! Alexander shows off the beautiful invitation we received to the Christening Cruise in this video:
January 11, 2011 - We've begun packing for our cruise. Here's a video of Alexander packing "very important things" that other kids might find useful on their own cruises:
January 15, 2011 - Today Mickey Mouse called us to say how much he was looking forward to seeing us on the Disney Dream! Alexander loved it, and so did I! What he doesn't know is that I used Disney's free Character Call service to pre-arrange a call today. And I managed to record it, so you can see Alexander's reaction to the call. I've included directions on how to get your own free character call in the video, too!
January 17, 2011 - Preparations continue -- we have just two days before we depart! I posted a very long list of questions that I plan to find answers for while onboard my cruises. And this morning we measured Alexander to see if he meets the height requirement for the AquaDuck (48"), and he does -- he's just shy of 50"!
January 19, 2011 at 9:00 am - We've arrived in Orlando and as I type this we're on our way to the port and the Disney Dream! It's a beautiful day and I plan to upload plenty of photos and videos (batteries willing, of course). Watch my photo and video streams for our progress!
January 19, 2011 at 8:45 pm - Wow, what a day! The Christening Ceremony was just spectacular and the ship is gorgeous. The day went by in a blur, to be honest, and both Alexander and I are exhausted (he's in bed, drifting off to sleep to the gentle rocking the Dream). We ate lunch at Enchanted Garden, then registered for the Kids Club, did the Safety Drill (we didn't have to wear lifejackets!), then checked out the very cool Midship Detective Agency (Alexander LOVES it). We had dinner at Animator's Palate, but by that point Alexander was wilting, and it was back to the stateroom. Castaway Cay is tomorrow.
About the Author: Jennifer Marx is the author of more than 50 books focusing on Disney, including PassPorter's Disney Cruise Line and its Ports of Call. She's been on more than 15 Disney cruises from 1999-2011.