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Old 01-25-2013, 11:08 PM   #76
MrRay
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Cruise Day 7, Castaway Cay Part 2

We had to meet in "The Tube" at 9:15 to get ready for the 5K. I of course forgot my ID so I got my warm up run in sprinting across the ship and up and down the stairs. There is no charge for this, and there was probably about 30 people signed up.

We were led off the ship as soon as it was cleared and walked to the starting point, which was roughly a mile from the ship.


Once at the starting mark we were given a rundown of the route. Basically out to the runway, running the loop to the observation tower, down to the adult beach, back through the observation tower loop, and then back to the start.

Almost unfortunately this was some of the best weather of the day. It was sunny for pretty much the whole race and it was hot for running. It must be hard doing this in warmer months.



There is a few water stations throughout the route. I stopped 3 times I think and skipped a few, so there is plenty.

A handful of hardcore runners took off right away and were gone from my view and about halfway through I was regretting my big breakfast. I was keeping pace with a kid who must have been around 12 and we had a very exciting sprint to the finish.



You get a certificate for finishing and you even get....to buy...a very nice t-shirt. I've heard that they have started giving out medals for finishing again, but there were none this day.


It was a nice start to the day and got me in the water IMMEDIATELY. I recommend doing it even if you're not a big runner. There were plenty of people taking it slow.

Jenna had a bum foot so she was my support team...


Next...More Castaway.
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Old 01-26-2013, 12:19 PM   #77
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OP, Do you have any more photos of your visit to Passion Island? I'm trying to decide if our family should take this excursion or not. You have any photos of the food area. If you had to repeat the excursion would you do it again? Do you have photos of the dolphin area in Costa Maya?
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Old 01-26-2013, 12:54 PM   #78
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OP, Do you have any more photos of your visit to Passion Island? I'm trying to decide if our family should take this excursion or not. You have any photos of the food area. If you had to repeat the excursion would you do it again? Do you have photos of the dolphin area in Costa Maya?
I don't really have any more pictures of the Island that show any more of it. The food was really pretty terrible. It's a very small buffet with probably 5 platters on it. Some kind of chicken thigh dish, that didn't have much meat on it, a fish dish that didn't look very good, and I remember spaghetti being there, which I thought was odd. It looked particularly dried out and was hard and caked onto the pan. Maybe we just hit it at the wrong time of day but definitely don't go in expecting much.

If it's a nice day then it's a fabulous beach day. It was a little too windy and cloudy when we were there to really spend too much time in the water.

I don't think we would do it again, but the Island and surrounding water is really beautiful.

No more pictures of the Dolphin area at Costa Maya, it's pretty small and right by the pier.
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Old 01-27-2013, 09:33 AM   #79
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Cruise Day 7, Castaway Cay Part 3

We took a short dip in the water, but it was still a little chilly out. The water temperature is definitely not as warm as further south but if it's warm out I think it's definitely manageable. Next time we might bring a couple of swim shirts though.

We were originally planning on lugging my sneakers and running clothes around all day but we figured we'd just take the day slow and walked back to the ship to drop some of our stuff off.


On the way we passed by what I think I figured out was a crab race...but I'm not totally sure.


We also used this time to visit the Post Office since there wasn't the rush of everyone traveling back to the ship as well as take some photos now that there were less people around.




The crew use this day to get ready for the next cruise already. There is a lot of cleaning and maintenance going on while the ship is so empty.



At one point we watched Goofy pull up in a golf cart and head back onto ship. I was really curious what his boarding procedures were going to be, I mean how does Goofy go through security? I think his handler had his Key to the World Card and scanned it for him, but he definitely blows right through the medal detector...He barely fits. Anyway it was a funny exchange.

The view from our room was amazing.


Next... More Castaway
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Old 01-28-2013, 05:16 AM   #80
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Cruise Day 7, Castaway Cay Part 4

Back off the ship we decided to go to "Cookies" before heading out to the adult beach. They had plenty of stations open and we were able to get food quickly with no wait. This was probably the only meal that I had all week that I felt wasn't very good. They had ribs that were tough and didn't have much meat and I think also some mediocre chicken. We ate quick and were on our way. I was no longer regretting my big breakfast.

I'm glad we had eaten when we did because the smaller buffet at the adult beach had a long line. "Serenity Bay" is absolutely beautiful. The water was so clear and mostly shallow.



We walked through the water for a while then grabbed a couple of chairs.







Then we started to notice the only real misstep that we felt Disney made. The crew have a beach area for themselves along the same shoreline as the adult beach. They were playing really loud music and it just seemed like there was a huge beach party going on. You could hear the music clearly from everywhere and it pretty much destroyed the "Serenity Bay" theme. If it wasn't for that it would have been unbelievably calm. Eventually the music stopped so I wonder if someone complained, or if someone higher ranking on the crew put a stop to it but it was a little out of character. It was the only time through the whole cruise where we momentarily fell out of the "Disney Bubble".

There were a lot of heavy clouds now and when the sun disappeared it got chilly. We noticed a sand bar a couple hundred feet out in the water and watched the sky for a nice patch of clear and then ventured out there. The water never got much higher than our waist. Once out there the water was only ankle deep at spots.





We watched the sky for a nice big sun patch so we could walk back. By this point a lot of people decided to make their way out to the sand bar and as we walked back to shore there were so many people wading their way towards us, carefully stepping through the sand, that it looked like a mob of “walkers” from “Walking Dead”. It was pretty funny.

Next...Even more Castaway

Last edited by MrRay; 01-29-2013 at 06:08 PM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:36 PM   #81
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Just a quick note to tell you how much I'm appreciated your TR! I know it takes some time and it's very much appreciated.
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Old 01-29-2013, 06:06 PM   #82
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Cruise Day 7, Castaway Cay Part 5

Once back on dry land we tried to find some towels because we had deposited ours earlier in one of the dirty bins. We couldn't find any. As we thought about it we couldn't remember seeing any anywhere on the island so I'm not sure if that was a detail that we missed... but just be careful not to get caught without a towel.

We took the tram back towards the family beaches. We were a little chilly and opted for some beverages to warm up. We had a pina colada and the drink of the day, which I think was a "Sting Ray".





We just sat for a while and enjoyed the views. It's wonderfully scenic. The Fantasy looks beautiful sitting on the horizon.

For some reason in my mind, or because of the pictures that Disney takes, Pelican Plunge seemed like it was really far out in the water, but in reality it's not too far off land.



We eventually decided that we weren't going to get back in the water and we had seen enough for one trip so we thought we'd head back to the ship. We were completely satisfied and content with our trip and ready to pack it in.



We headed straight for the hot tub to warm up. It was nice sitting there watching people heading back to the ship and having their pictures taken with a few characters that were just off the ship.

We needed a snack to hold us over until dinner and were still pretty hungry from not having too much lunch so we headed over to the quick service area, which we were now getting a little tired of.

As we sat there eating we noticed what we assumed was another ship on the horizon. We didn't think much of it at first. It was not uncommon to see other ships out the windows throughout most of the cruise.
We did think it seemed a little strange because it looked like it was coming right at the island.





We started thinking about all the stuff that we still had to do. Pick up a couple of pictures we wanted to buy, put together our tip envelopes, and of course the dreaded packing. We decided to try and bang the packing out. As we were in the room packing we couldn't help but notice that the ship was still heading our way. I pulled out my longest lens and zoomed in all the way. It wasn't just any ship...It wasn't even just any Disney ship...It was unquestionably the Disney Dream, and she was heading right for us.

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Old 01-29-2013, 07:06 PM   #83
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That is so cool! Can't wait to read what comes next~
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:47 PM   #84
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Great TR, MrRay. Your photos are amazing. DW gave me a T3i last week for my birthday. Its my first SLR. I've barely had it out of the box; haven't even powered it on yet, but these pictures have me inspired.
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:26 PM   #85
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We've been following you since you started your TR. Great job and great pics! We are sailing this itinerary in April, and you've added to the excitement!

How cool that you saw the Dream. Can't wait for more!
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Old 01-30-2013, 05:38 PM   #86
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We started thinking about all the stuff that we still had to do. Pick up a couple of pictures we wanted to buy, put together our tip envelopes, and of course the dreaded packing.
I just started a thread the other day about the last day of the cruise. Sounds familiar!!!
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:14 PM   #87
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I just started a thread the other day about the last day of the cruise. Sounds familiar!!!
That last night is always so sad-with so much to do
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Old 01-31-2013, 01:26 PM   #88
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MORE, PLEASE !! Nicely done , Mr Ray....
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:28 PM   #89
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MORE, PLEASE !! Nicely done , Mr Ray....
Don't worry it's coming tonight!
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Old 01-31-2013, 05:23 PM   #90
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Great TR! The fantasy looks amazing
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