I just returned from a single of the first cruises on the Disney Desire given that March of 2020 and want to share a little bit about the encounter. This is the initial of several detailed articles I intend to generate, but I imagined I’d get some of my original views out to you all to start. We’ll chat additional about the port arrival and boarding procedures in my subsequent write-up. Also, for complete disclosure, I was hosted by Disney Cruise Line as their visitor on behalf of Desires Unlimited Travel – the official sponsor of DCL Lover.
I’m going to start off off by stating that regardless of whether or not you should really go on a Disney Cruise Line getaway correct now is dependent a wonderful deal on what style of cruiser you are. If you’ve never ever been on a Disney cruise, you need to have to determine if you are an action figure on holiday or if you are extra of a leisurely, rest on vacation variety of person – most of us know which aspect of the fence we’re on even if we’ve never cruised prior to.
Suitable now, there are nowhere in close proximity to as lots of activities out there – on the ship or off – as there have been prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The checklist of Port Adventures getting made available at Castaway Cay – Disney’s personal island in The Bahamas – is very brief and it is now the only port of contact currently being visited in The Bahamas. This was ideal for me as I tend to seriously enjoy the ship alone and don’t like shelling out a bunch of further cash on things to do and excursions. I like to hold out by the pool on a lounger and surf on my cell phone, pay attention to an book, or do definitely almost nothing at all but sit there. I don’t need to have to be entertained or busy with unique things to do all working day long in get to have a very good time. I like the restful component of a cruise and take pleasure in slowing down on my holidays.
The far more adventurous go-getter may like to take part in the Castaway Cay 5K or some of the sports routines that are accessible onboard the ship. They could even be the men and women who go to a good deal of the scheduled amusement choices like the stand-up comedy functions or bingo, and probably a magic display or two. They might be able to go go go from early in the early morning until finally the wee several hours at night time doing all of the matters onboard in addition to the things to do off the ship in your port of connect with.
The other form of cruiser is the one who likes to soak in all of the rest and rest that they can. That would be me… ahem. This particular person would perhaps have espresso shipped to their stateroom early in the early morning so they could sit outdoors on their veranda and observe as the ocean passes by. Then it’s possible a couple of hours afterwards, they head to just one of the main dining places or even up to Cabanas on Deck 11 for breakfast. Probably they have been fortuitous ample to secure a brunch reservation at Palo, a person of the ship’s grownups-only dining places. Immediately after breakfast/brunch, perhaps they stroll around to some of the shops if it’s an at-sea day or head to just one of the theaters onboard to watch a motion picture. Jungle Cruise, Raya and the Previous Dragon, and Black Widow have been participating in in the course of our cruise.
A leisurely soak in a single of the warm tubs and maybe a nap in one particular of the loungers would be upcoming on my agenda. Indeed, we just ate breakfast, but when we’re on family vacation, naps are the finest. We could even head into Cove Café for a frozen espresso or two. The swimming pools are functioning a little bit in another way now from what we’re used to as nicely. As you can see in the graphic above, the swimming pools were roped off so the lifeguards could watch visitors likely in and out. You were being technically allowed to be in the pool for ten minutes at a time, but when I was all over the Mickey pool, there had been never much more than two individuals waiting to get in so it appeared like that was a lot more of a standard rule that changed often depending on how quite a few attendees had been there.
There are so numerous selections for lunch on the ship. All of the swift assistance dining places by the pool ended up serving the normal pizza, burgers, and such. A person day, we headed back to our stateroom and requested home support but you can also check the Navigator app to see which of the principal places to eat had been serving lunch. We experienced the option to consume lunch on Castaway Cay two days in a row, but we chose to get back on the ship for lunch a person of all those days.
Due to the fact my cruise was prepared just a couple of weeks prior to the sail day, there were being no Palo or Remy brunch reservations readily available – I did check out with the dining group the day we boarded the ship to be positioned on their waitlist, but almost nothing opened up. I’ll just want to e book a different cruise to deal with that, won’t I?
The later part of the afternoon could bring a spa appointment or probably a pay a visit to to the Rainforest Space within Senses Spa. Factors had been a minimal distinct this time all over concerning the onboard spa. The Rainforest Room inside Senses Spa did not offer day passes this time it experienced to be privately rented out for an hour and 45 minutes. The price to do that was $175 for up to 10 company in each and every session. We resolved not to do it this time only since we did not have a ton of time on the ship with a limited cruise.
A minor little bit surprising, considering the reduce number of travellers on the ship, all of the personal cabanas on Castaway Cay were rented out prior to our sail day. I was considering that probably due to the fact the ships weren’t running at full capacity, there may be a chance of securing a cabana. We did not talk to to be put on a waitlist only because after discussing it a little bit, we made the decision that we’d instead see how crowded the family members beach locations and eating places were so I could share people information with all of you. The private cabanas, whilst constantly deluxe and uncrowded, weren’t likely to give me with the standpoint I was looking for. When I notify you that we moseyed more than to the beach front at all-around 12:30 p.m., there were loads of empty lounge chairs to opt for from all about the place, I am not exaggerating. The only situation that came up was that the island lost energy by all around 1:00 p.m. so we could not get our preferred Piña Colavas or a banana and strawberry swirled ice cream cones which you can also get in a cup if you talk to. The good thing is for us, we’d be back again the next day to try out once again. Spoiler: the energy returned on day two!
You ought to also be mindful that on your Castaway Cay working day, you’ll will need to be a part of a digital queue to disembark the ship. Don’t be alarmed if you are amount 158 when you sign up for the queue the instant it opens simply because factors transfer swiftly. Be positive that you’re just about prepared to walk out of your stateroom doorway to head to Deck 1 when you be part of so that you really do not squander any of that treasured island time.
I have to say, the reduced quantity of guests on this cruise was possibly my most most loved about the full excursion. Those of you who have listened to me share my views on the DIS Unplugged about checking out the Walt Disney Globe theme parks appropriate now know that I’m a bit uncomfortable about masses of individuals. In truth, I was a little bit anxious about likely on this cruise if I’m currently being absolutely sincere. There was not 1 time through this 3-night cruise that I felt it was much too crowded or awkward. Disney Cruise Line was extremely cautious about the way they did every thing from seating you in the most important eating rooms to getting posted signals at the elevators stating a greatest of 2 people today or 1 celebration at a time. A crew member led you to your seats in the onboard theaters and said to leave 3 seats in between you and the following get together. In my view, every thing was managed so perfectly and my ease and comfort stage was right where it desired to be.
Speaking of theaters, we are utilised to looking at a distinct present offered each and every night on the Disney ships, but this time, there was only one – Elegance and the Beast. Normally, the dwell exhibit is offered two times nightly but on our cruise, there was an added exhibiting in the early afternoon so that all passengers who wished to see the display had been presented that opportunity with bodily distancing actions in place.
All in all, I haven’t stopped talking about scheduling yet another cruise given that the moment I still left the ship. And no, I am not kidding. I am above here chomping at the bit to get again on an additional cruise Suitable NOW with my following DCL family vacation not scheduled to happen till August of 2022 on the Disney Desire. It remains to be viewed how that all pans out, but in the meantime, I’d love to hear your feelings and if you have any issues about the cruise, go ahead and leave them in the opinions segment underneath and I’ll be joyful to get them answered for you!
Jackie Gailey is mother of two developed-up youngsters and spouse to the biggest husband and father. She was a Panelist on the 2013 and 2014 Disney Parks Moms Panel (now planDisney) and is now the Senior Editor for The DIS So considerably, she’s cruised the moment aboard the Disney Aspiration and after on the Disney Fantasy.