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Old 12-02-2012, 02:20 PM   #1
kihart
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First Time DCL Cruisers just off the Fantasy

My mom, me and my 6 yr old daughter just got off the Fantasy yesterday(12.1.12) and had an amazing time!

A few tips we read about and did...
1. the pillow case with the fabric markers...this was great! Dropped it off on the way to dinner on the first day and it was delivered to our stateroom of Friday. It had ALL the autographs of all the characters on board. The 6 yr old loved it...take the yellow marker out, hard to see.
2. participate in a FE exchange! it is like secret Santa all week! Just a few thingds we received...Mickey Tumblers(all 3 of us), tons of candy, scrabble tile necklaces with the DCL logo on them, keychains, penlights, 'pixie dust', Disney princess pens and the list goes on!
3. get in line early for some of the most popular characters!
4. use that kids club!! My 6 yr old protested a bit, but when i would pick her up she would say how much fun she had!! We had a late dinner seating and the counselors come to the entrance of the dining rooms to pick kids up.

Cozumel was one of our fave stops. We snorkled there with the Fury Catamaran people and my DD loved it!! LOVED IT! Thru her mouthpiece she shouted 'this is flippin' awesome mom!' There was not a lunch with this package and that was the only negative.

Costa Maya was our least favorite.

Grand Cayman was beautiful as well! We did the dolphin excursion there. My DD wouldn't do the fin swim, or the push from the dolphin, even though she said she wanted to, but my mom and i did and it was very fun. We also went to Margaritaville after that. There was a waterslide there. The DD loved that!! Mom and I had a couple of drinks and some apps and sat at a table just near the slide and wated her play. Now the money exchange was very high so our bill was HIGH. I think the lady said it was 1.50(Mex) to 1.00(US)...but we didn't know any different so that may not have been true...whatever...we had fun!

Check the giftshops on the boat daily. Some things changed. I had wanted a sweatshirt, and looked in every shop for just the right one...almost decided to buy one of the guys, because i liked it better than the womens...well the last night we were shopping for those final trinkets and they had NEW items out all over. My mom and i both got 2 different women's sweatshirts that had not been out all cruise long.

Castaway Cay was beautiful, even with some of the foliage being 'burnt up' from Hurrican Sandy. They also do the kids club on the island. My DD went for about 1.5 hours. My mom and i did a little shopping and reading.

Happy to share any other details.
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Old 12-02-2012, 06:08 PM   #2
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SO glad you had a great time!

Any details you can share about your excursions would be helpful

We plan to do this trip next summer

my kids will be 9 and 5
ty!!
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:22 PM   #3
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Welcome back! Were you able to swim in Castaway Cay? Was the water cold?
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:38 PM   #4
kihart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annabug
SO glad you had a great time!

Any details you can share about your excursions would be helpful

We plan to do this trip next summer

my kids will be 9 and 5
ty!!
annabug
We did the extreme dolphin excursion at Grand Cayman. My mom and I enjoyed it. My daughter was very timid she would only touch/kiss/dance. She would not swim! I have to admit, I was a bit nervous myself...I mean come on, it's a freakin dolphin!!! Lol! The pics tho were ridiculous price wise! $25 per pic or the whole cd for $150(maybe more??)

In Cozumel we did the Fury Catamaran snorkel and beach break. It was awesome! It rained when we got to the beach so that was disappointing, but it was still great! They sell food there, but we didn't eat. On the ride back was free beer/margaritas/sodas and dancing. Because it was so good we want to do more snorkeling next trip!!

We found Costa Maya to be a bust! We went to Tropicante, not a DCL excursion, but a beach/bar/restaurant place. We were harassed by locals selling stuff. It was rather annoying. We wished we had just stayed on the ship and sat by the pool and rode the Aquaduck! It's ok though, we lived and learned, and know better next time.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:45 PM   #5
kihart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by langeveld
Welcome back! Were you able to swim in Castaway Cay? Was the water cold?
The water was freezing! My daughter was in to her knees only briefly and we wasted money on floats and snorkel gear! There really is no need to reserve in advance. They do have a 'walk up' window. Now some may have been turned away, but it seemed there was plenty.

We did ride the Aqua Trike at CC! It was fun, but my 6 yr old struggled to reach the pedals so I got a great work out! Ha!

We also rented bikes, also seemed easy enough to walk up, there were tons! That was very fun! There were some with training wheels and they had helmets for the children.

My dd went to Scuttles Cove, kids club on the island, she liked that. they have a water play area, oh and the wave phones work on the island too!
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:47 PM   #6
kihart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kihart

We did the extreme dolphin excursion at Grand Cayman. My mom and I enjoyed it. My daughter was very timid she would only touch/kiss/dance. She would not swim! I have to admit, I was a bit nervous myself...I mean come on, it's a freakin dolphin!!! Lol! The pics tho were ridiculous price wise! $25 per pic or the whole cd for $150(maybe more??)

In Cozumel we did the Fury Catamaran snorkel and beach break. It was awesome! It rained when we got to the beach so that was disappointing, but it was still great! They sell food there, but we didn't eat. On the ride back was free beer/margaritas/sodas and dancing. Because it was so good we want to do more snorkeling next trip!!

We found Costa Maya to be a bust! We went to Tropicante, not a DCL excursion, but a beach/bar/restaurant place. We were harassed by locals selling stuff. It was rather annoying. We wished we had just stayed on the ship and sat by the pool and rode the Aquaduck! It's ok though, we lived and learned, and know better next time.
Oh! The Cozumel snorkel also took pics in the water and at the beach. Very reasonable price wise. $12 each and I think they did a package if u bought then all, we just went with 2 of them that were the best.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:33 PM   #7
BambiFamily
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Thank you for posting!! We're going on this cruise over Spring Break, so it's nice to hear positive experiences. I wasn't too sure about swimming with dolphins, but my boys would love it! LOL. I think I should probably plan on that one...
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kihart View Post
We found Costa Maya to be a bust! We went to Tropicante, not a DCL excursion, but a beach/bar/restaurant place. We were harassed by locals selling stuff. It was rather annoying. We wished we had just stayed on the ship and sat by the pool and rode the Aquaduck! It's ok though, we lived and learned, and know better next time.
Hi! We also sailed the same cruise, & may have even been in the same FE group together (group A).

I wanted to take a minute to hijack your report to let you & others know of an amazing place in Costa Maya. This was our ONLY excursion & I'm so glad we did it, although our port time was only approx 4 1/2 hrs. We went to Maya Chan Beach. It's a good 20 min ride from the port (they shuttle you, or provide a paid taxi if the shuttles are more than a 15 min wait). For aprox $40 per adult, you get all the drinks & food you want, beach chairs with umbrella (enough for every member in your group), even a shady villa or pergola if you request. It also includes snorkeling equipment, kayaking, lounge floats, & a sandcastle building contest for the kids (my dd & another cruisers dd won 1st place mini trophies). You are welcome to stay as long as you want & they arrange to have the shuttle take you back with plenty of time to spare. There are absolutely NO vendors allowed or even around the area. This was the most peaceful, relaxing, fun place & one of the many highlights of our cruise. Please look them up on Facebook or Google them for their website. They get stellar reviews on TripAdvisor.com
I HIGHLY recommend MayaChan... I only wish we could have stayed longer.
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Old 12-07-2012, 04:13 PM   #9
kihart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goofy's gal

Hi! We also sailed the same cruise, & may have even been in the same FE group together (group A).

I wanted to take a minute to hijack your report to let you & others know of an amazing place in Costa Maya. This was our ONLY excursion & I'm so glad we did it, although our port time was only approx 4 1/2 hrs. We went to Maya Chan Beach. It's a good 20 min ride from the port (they shuttle you, or provide a paid taxi if the shuttles are more than a 15 min wait). For aprox $40 per adult, you get all the drinks & food you want, beach chairs with umbrella (enough for every member in your group), even a shady villa or pergola if you request. It also includes snorkeling equipment, kayaking, lounge floats, & a sandcastle building contest for the kids (my dd & another cruisers dd won 1st place mini trophies). You are welcome to stay as long as you want & they arrange to have the shuttle take you back with plenty of time to spare. There are absolutely NO vendors allowed or even around the area. This was the most peaceful, relaxing, fun place & one of the many highlights of our cruise. Please look them up on Facebook or Google them for their website. They get stellar reviews on TripAdvisor.com
I HIGHLY recommend MayaChan... I only wish we could have stayed longer.
We were in group B. I am so glad you had fun there! We were wAnting to hear about that place and see what it was like!!! Good to know next time.
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