Many vacationers focus on what they have on vacation. But as a glass-half-empty person, I look at what is missing.
And on the new Disney Fantasy cruise ship, it is huge. No casino.
In fact, none of the Disney cruise ships have casinos. For family travelers, this is a huge bonus.
No people staying up late for just one more chance to get lucky. No drunken carousing in the halls.
I’m sure people get rip-roaring drunk on Disney cruises. It is no temperance vacation, with bars throughout the ship and the main restaurants offering signature cocktails every evening.
But they aren’t the focus of the cruise.
Kids and Disney fanatics (there are many of the latter who are no longer the former) make up the bulk of Disney cruisers, but even an indulgent parent who is not keen on Disney can find plenty to love.
1) The rooms:
The Disney staterooms have a water closet with a toilet and sink, plus a bathroom with shower/bath combo and sink. This is huge whether you are traveling with kids or just a friend. The water closet is big enough for shaving, so one person can shower, put on make-up or brush her teeth while the other has his own space.
2) The Disney beds:
The magnificent beds feature Frette linens and criminally comfortable pillow-top mattresses that would be just as at home in a Ritz-Carlton as a cruise ship. I wanted to cram the mattress into my suitcase.
3) Disney customer service:
The unrivaled customer service includes seamless airport and luggage transport and super-easy check-in. I filled out most of my information beforehand and on the day of departure sailed through the process in about 5 minutes.
4) Disney kid’s clubs:
Disney keeps kids entertained, whether at the nursery (an extra charge, for kid’s 3 months to 3 years) or with supervised (and free) cubs for kids ages 3 to 12. There are also separate lounges for tweens and teens.
5) Disney private island:
Disney has its own island, Castaway Cay, a laid back easy to navigate stop on its Caribbean sailings. You can snorkel, swim with stingrays, ride a bike, get an open-air massage or just hang out in a hammock. The kids clubs operate on Castaway Cay, so grown-ups can visit the adult-only beach.
6) Disney fireworks:
One night of the cruise, Disney sets off fireworks. Disney is the only cruise line allowed to set off fireworks. You just have to experience this, being in the middle of the sea; the only thing when you look out is this private light show.
7) Disney Entertainment
There are sophisticated live shows nightly plus live music at the adults-only pool, and a magical show at the restaurant Animator’s Palate. You can actually see Disney characters constantly. And first-run movies play in the movie theater.
Oh, and then there’s the water roller coaster, the min golf and basketball court. And that missing casino? Actually the best thing of all.
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Disclaimer: I cruised on the Disney Fantasy as a media guest, part of the TravelingMom retreat. Photos were taken with a loaner HTC Rhyme smartphone. Top photo credit: DebMomOf3