You may recall the sweet Hall family who won our Unfrozen Winter contest earlier this year by submitting a picture of their creative snowman. Check it out!
Calverley Service Experts sent the family on a Disney Cruise and paid for airfare for four. Mom and Dad (Rebecca and Bradley) took their two oldest kids, Korbin and Brooke, on their Disney Cruise in July this year. This was the first cruise for Korbin and Brooke and the first in about 10 years for Rebecca and Bradley.
“I can’t begin to describe how much fun we had and how absolutely magnificent everything was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a getaway we could have never made happen on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall family was sweet enough to send us their itinerary and some snapshots from their awesome trip. If you’re interested in taking a Disney Cruise, or just looking to see what it’s all about, keeping reading for the highlights from the Hall’s vacation.
We were on the water for a couple days (Saturday and Sunday) and then ported in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We booked a Catamaran and went out with 4 other families for the day. It was my kids’ first time snorkeling and they had a blast. We spotted turtles and stingrays – it was quite possibly the best experience of the entire trip!
We went from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we were able to snorkel some more, swam, and hung out on the beach. The water was really that turquoise blue that they show on TV – truly beautiful.
We traveled all day Wednesday and then docked at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Cruise Line Guest-Only Island. The water was very blue and had amazing visibility beneath, so of course - more snorkeling! They placed a bunch of Mickey Mouses you could look for underwater, which was nice because there weren’t as many fish. They also include an adults-only beach which we enjoyed while Korbin and Brooke played with other kids. The island had people everywhere to keep an eye on the kids so we (Bradley and Rebecca) hung out and had a daiquiri. It was basically a floating Disneyland!
It gives me goosebumps thinking about everything on the ship – everything was all so fun and extraordinary! They have a “Midship Detective Agency” where you pick the mystery you want to solve and they give you a card so you can record all your clues. When you put the card up to a painting, it actually comes alive – it talks to you, tells you about the mystery you are working to solve, and gives you hints and directions. One mystery went on for two hours because we were going all over the boat.
They are constantly playing first-run movies out around the pool so we got to watch Big Friendly Giant, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jungle Book, and Finding Dory. We also got to experience the Aqua Duct, which is a huge slide that shoots you up and down and swings you out above the boat!
The whole group went Goofy Golfing and the cruise also has games like foosball, basketball, and a Tween Club called Edge with events like scavenger hunts, ice breakers, and more.
It’s so easy to meet characters on the boat – you only have to wait a few minutes versus a half-hour or more at Disneyland. We met about two each day, and one day we got five in a row! They also have several versions of the characters, like Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The room was amazing! 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 cozy and never felt smothered.
You rotate through three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has cool flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the colors change on the ceiling throughout your meal and Royal Court was extremely elegant and put me in mind of Cinderella. The food is very gourmet and they have a good selection. My son tried everything, even escargot at the Royal Court. (He told us it tasted like dirt!)
Animators Palette is animation-themed and they leave markers on your table so you can illustrate a figure. They offer a tutorial on how to draw a figure, then they pick up the drawings and at the end of your meal, they animate your drawings on the wall. It’s completely unexpected! They arrange them to music and put them in Disney clips. Our daughter is our artist so she put a lot of effort into hers and was elated – the rest of us weren’t quite as polished
“Our family can’t thank Service Experts enough for this unbelievable vacation,” Rebecca told us after they returned from the trip. “I get teary-eyed when I think about it all. Entering a contest I never thought would go anywhere, learning we were a finalist, the anxious voting phase, the big reveal, researching and choosing which cruise, the anticipation of going and finally experiencing an unbelievable trip. It was such a fun time living it all. Thank you, thank you!”
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