Fantasy Eastern, April 20-27th, 2013
Hello, I've never written a trip report, but having been on 6 DCL sailings..I figure it's time!
Family: DW, DH, DMIL, DD (8), DS (2). 2 connecting rooms
This makes our third Fantasy sailing and was just as nice as ever. We drove in Friday and picked up my MIL (Grandma) at MCO airport. Stayed at the Embassy near the airport..LOVE that hotel.
Saturday morning we woke early to drive to port. We had boarding time of 11:00-11:30. We arrived about 10:45 after dropping off our luggage, DH took the van to park at Park n Cruise. We've used them several times before and had great experiences (more on this later though). It took quite a long time for DH to get back to the port, again something we were not used to. Never the less, he arrived before our boarding number was called, we had boarding #4! They didn't start boarding till 11:30 I believe, Anyways it was a quick process. Saw characters in the terminal and time passed quickly.
We boarded the ship with the infamous family name announcement..love that of course! The first thing we wanted to do was check on our dining table mates and our server. We had met a family on our Dis Meet group and had requested to be seated with them and also we had requested our favorite server. Turns out you can't do this till early afternoon, so we decided to let the kids see the nursery/club/lab. We didn't get the wrist band for my DD until we boarded the ship. The lines for that in the terminal are WAY too long and it's not necessary. So the kids played for a short time and then we went to eat at Cabanas. Enjoyed that lunch and then it was time to check on dining details. I went to Royal Court which is where they handle changes and my DH went to Palo/Remy to see about moving a reservation. As usual, Disney had granted all our requests and it was all set in place accurately. We were very excited that it was completed and lots of moving around wasn't necessary.
We got into the rooms right at about 1:30 but when we got to our rooms we were very surprised! We had booked these rooms, but really didn't know exactly what to expect. We booked an 8A room (which I call a sideways room). We had rooms 6512 & 6514. 6512 was built as a handicap room, however, was never classified as one. It has a wide door as well as a shower with no tub. You could roll into it via a wheelchair if needed. It was oversized as well. Both of these rooms were HUGE! Much bigger than any of the rooms we've stayed previously. They both have 2 large portholes, couch, pull down couch and a large chair in corner. 6514 has 2 full-size closets and 6512 had 1 full and 1 half size closet. The only slight downfall on these rooms were they only had 3 draws in the whole room. There is plenty of space throughout the room to make up for that though. We had a pack n play up for my son and it was never taken down…didn't need to be…there was more than enough room for it! Our welcome backpack was waiting for us and later our Gold member gift arrived later in the day (if not the next day).
We unpacked a little and then it was time for life board drill and Sail Away party. Quick and easy drill and then we headed to Deck 12 port side to watch the sail away. We always watch from this point because we like to wave to the webcam at Fish Lips restaurant once we start moving. We all waved to the camera but our families didn't see us, however, it was determined later (after watching the archive video) that you COULD see us…pretty cool!
After this we finished unpacking and then went to the early show. I know many people do not like the first night show, but I always enjoy it. I enjoy all the shows for that matter.
Dinner was at Royal Court and we were happy to meet up with our favorite server, Sergio from Montenegro. He's always so great with the kids and so informative about the best things to do and eat. We've had him now for 3 sailings. We also were excited to sit with our new friends that we met over the Dis Meet group. We saw them all over the ship, sat with them at shows and the girls had the best time together doing lots of fun things.
Now throughout the day we of course had many character greetings…which is a favorite thing for us. We made it to as many greetings as possible throughout the cruise. This leading to the fact that we had already decided we wanted to buy the photo CD from Shutters. Fast forwarding to the end…we bought the CD and left the ship with 315 prints. One of the photographers said it was the most she had seen for one family. I'm sure there have been more, but we felt we got our money's worth anyways.
We went to bed, excited for the princess gathering and the BBB tomorrow morning. princess:
I"ve never posted pics here and will work on learning how. I have plenty to share!
In for your TR! :goodvibes
Count me in! We are doing this cruise next summer and I can't wait to hear how yours was. :flower3:
Here are 2 shots of our stateroom!
And our friend Mickey at the terminal.
Boarding picture of course:
These are from the Royal Court dining room: beautiful decor!
And our little man, sitting in one of the portholes while still at PC…http://i1334.photobucket.com/albums/...ps1bd44440.jpg
Our first character greeting:http://i1334.photobucket.com/albums/...ps2a26c3b8.jpg
Wow! That's a massive stateroom! I look forward to more of your trip report!
Looking forward to your report....we were on this cruise also and it was our 6th as well. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.
We've never requested specific servers before, but we might if we go on the Fantasy again. Gustavo (Argentina) and Carlos (Mexico) were the best server team we've ever had.
Day 2: At Sea:
We started off with an early breakfast at Cabanas because DD had a BBB reservation at 9am. We wanted to get the hair done before the Princess Gathering at 10. This is the first time for us that the photographers were in the boutique…we've always seen other peoples photos..just always been unlucky. Well, not this time and we also were lucky enough to get a photographer we knew from our last sailing. I was very happy with the photos to say the least. Also, we were very lucky to get her Fairy Godmother Michelle, she is so wonderful and loves Elizabeth, they had a great time throughout the cruise. Also, while getting her hair done, one of E's past Fairy Godmother's Emily saw her and remembered her well. So, she joined in and helped with her nails and makeup. These girls are so sweet and we already are looking forward to seeing them next time. Also, while we were in the BBB, the Fairy Godmothers told us that TODAY was going to be the debut of Belle's new dress on the ship. DD was so excited (as was I, because we hadn't seen it yet). Nice added surprise!
After BBB it was immediately time for the 1st (of 3) Princess Gatherings. My daughter is ABSOLUTELY in love with Belle and considers her her best friend. We are friends with someone that played Belle previously on the Fantasy so she has a great connection with Belle. She had really been looking forward this! She and DS had a great time seeing the princesses. Even little brother loves them too! While in line, Prince Ali visits each family and offers a photo moment and/or signature. Also, we ran into a CM we knew from the last 2 sailings…fun to see friends again!
After we got through the line at the gathering a Mom came up to us and said her little boy wanted to meet "THIS" Belle (speaking of our DD). We were blown away…it was SO sweet. It was the greatest thing ever! So of course DD loved to give hugs and bent down to talk to the little boy…teary moment I tell ya! She's had first hand training from our friend as a princess and now it paid off :)
After the gathering it was pool time. We joined up with our new friends and had a great time. The girls rode on the Aqua Duck with the Dad's and had so much fun.
Since it was formal night, we all decided to see the early (3pm) showing of Aladdin so we had plenty of time to rest and get ready for formal night. Aladdin is always a great show and this time was no different. Great fun had by all.
We got ready for dinner in Animator's Palate (Crush night) and went down to have pictures done before hand. I was taking every opportunity for pictures with the backdrops as well as with characters.
In some of our family photos our DS wasn't present as he had gone to the nursery for dinner. Although, he didn't' like the nursery too much so he only went a few times (much fewer times than originally planned).
Dinner was great as usual. Sergio knows my favorite soup is the bacon/potato soup so he assured that I got it every night…LOVED IT!!! Also, Sergio remembered from previous sailings that my DD loves corn dogs…so he surprised her with them again!
After dinner..more pics and then off to bed. Another princess gathering tomorrow and more fun on another sea day.
Subscribing we are going on in December and luv your report :goodvibes
Day 3: Sea Day
Happy Earth Day today: I've included a pic of the Funnel Vision screen displaying it's Earth Day. I was up early so grabbed a few pics of the upper deck without many people. It's always so nice to wake up early and walk around the upper decks with the sun rising and minimal crowds.
The kids went to Jake & the Neverland Pirates dance party where Jake joined in the fun. It was a nice wake up for them. Shortly after was the 2nd Princess Gathering. It was awesome they had 3 gatherings this sailing…more princess time!
Set up was the same, Prince Ali was in the lines while everyone waited. The princess gatherings have the longest line for the entire sailing. Be sure to get there early (or send someone for you) or you'll be waiting a real long time. Since Belle is DD favorite princess she decided to wear Belle's blue dress for this gathering. :good vibes
Early afternoon there was a character dance party in the atrium. Characters included Goofy, Mickey, Minnie & Daisy. It's a fun time to dance with characters and have a good time.
We went to the early performance of Wishes today too. I really like how they have early performances and you don't have to go right before/after dinner.
We managed to fit in some pool time during the day as well.
Many character greetings were had over the sea days…all days really!
Dinner was at Enchanted Garden this evening, nice as always.
Great sea day…packed full…we really don't rest much on these cruises, but enjoy every minute of it!!
Loving your report - thank you. We were on this cruise too and had a great time.
I'll be watching this because I believe this is the same as my cruise on May 18th in 15 days. Cool TR!
Day 4: St Thomas & Pirate night
We have been to St Thomas several times so we were in no hurry that morning. We didn't have any plans/excursions so we (well some of us) decided to sleep in a bit. I was up early as usual and walking the upper decks. I enjoyed watching us dock and also watch the other ships pull in behind us. We had been informed by other DIS folks that there were to be 7 ships in St Thomas that day!! Well they were close, there ended up being 6. Crazy amount of people!
Our plan was to walk over to the sky lift to Paradise Point and then return for some less crowded pool time!
It was nice to be the first ship on the dock because the lift was so close by. I will agree that the price of the lift is high for the short amount of time you're there…but the views are amazing!! I didn't like being bombarded by the locals about taking tours of the island and all, but expected it. There are plenty of pics from Paradise point below.
After returning we went to lunch and then pool time. Port days are perfect for the pools if you don't want to get off the ship. Lines are so much less for the Aqua duck and minimal people in the pools. We enjoyed the time.
The show tonight was the playing of OZ in the theatre. I had already seen it, but the rest of the family had not. I took the kids to do character greetings and such around the ship.
Tonight was pirate night. Always a fun time and enjoy seeing the characters in their pirate clothes. We dressed in our pirate gear and headed out. Before dinner (we have late dining) is the Mickey's pirate crew deck party (at 7:45). This is always enjoyed by the younger kids (older ones too of course). Fun times dancing and clapping along with the pirates and gang.
Dinner was back in Royal Court and as always…enjoyed it. Sorry I don't go into much detail about the meals. I'm a very basic meat & potatoes person, so I can't comment much on the other foods, but our table mates and my family ordered a variety of the foods and didn't hear many complaints! Kids always loved there's too! Even getting a "side order" of a corn dog every night didn't get old for two of the girls! Deserts were always fun too!
And of course, at 10:30 the Buccaneer Blast happens out on Deck 11/12 with the fireworks. It's always so crowded, but lots of fun. We always enjoy the fireworks! After the fireworks there is a nice buffet in Cabanas. We didn't make it down there, as we had just finished eating dinner basically, but on our last sailing in August we went there and enjoyed some nice deserts. I really wanted to go this time because I read they had turkey legs..but there was no way I could eat anything!
Then after walking the ship a short while, it was off to bed.
Tomorrow: San Juan
Day 5: San Juan
New port for us! Originally we had planned to take a cab to a beach but that morning we decided not to. We figured we would just take a short walk through the town and see what it was all about. My MIL has been to San Juan several times so she's seen it all before.
I woke early as usual and walked around. Snapped a few shots of us docking next to a RCL ship. It was interesting, I heard an announcement from RCL's ship that saying that they would be closing the dock for 45 min's while DCL pulled in. I didn't realize they did this..but for safety it's best. RCL was already docked and people exiting when we were pulling in…it was 7:30am!! Later RCL pulled out around 12:30pm, so it was a quick trip for them. Also noted, the dock was closed for about 30min when RCL pulled out as well.
We headed off the ship and just walked around. We didn't go into any stores or anything, but got a kick out of all the pigeons around the parks. There were many local vendors selling odds and ends around the parks as well. We snapped a few shots from the sidewalk and headed back to the ship. More pool time and also more detective time too (a favorite for DD).
The show for the night was Magic Dave. We didn't go see this show tonight, but some did go see his adult show later the next night. The reviews were mixed for that however. Most didn't care for it, but we all seemed to enjoy the family show during the closing events on Friday.
We saw many characters around the ship for the night and enjoyed club/lab times as well. Dinner was at Animator's…yay…for Animation night! We've been looking forward to this night again. It's always fun to see the animation come to life!
The girls went to the club again till late…
(side note: there was a wonderful event/interaction that happened today which I'll post separately about it because of the amount of pics regarding it, see below)
Tomorrow: Last sea day:
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