Mickey + NYC = MAGIC - June 2, 2012 8-night - FINAL 2/23

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by KristiMc, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    We are back from another wonderful cruise on the Magic. This time out of New York City on the 8-night NYC-Bahamas cruise.

    This was our second trip on the Magic, the first being March 26, 2011 Eastern Caribbean.

    Who we are:
    Kristi: I love everything Disney and love to plan our trips!

    Steve: My wonderful husband who works very hard to allow us to take these amazing vacations :love:.

    Matt: Our first-born who is 11. We found out on this cruise that the word "Tween" truly fits this age bracket (more to come on this later).

    Shawn: Our little man who is 8. He couldn't wait to get back to the Lab.

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    The planning
    On the Magic in 2011 we booked a "dummy" cruise to get the great benefits. After we were home for a week or so they came out with the NYC trips. How great would it be to be able to drive to a Disney cruise and not have to worry about how heavy our luggage is. We live in the Cleveland, OH area, so making the 6.5 hour trip would be easy.

    I booked the July 15th 5-night cruise to Canada and we were very excited. After a few weeks though, the 8-night trip that included a day at the parks, kept calling my name. We had not had a trip to the parks since February 2010 and I needed a park fix. Not only would this trip include that but we would also have 4 at-sea days. On our Eastern trip, I loved the at-sea days.

    We decided to change the 5-night to the June 2nd cruise! Our boys last day of school would be May 24th, so we would have no books to bring!!!

    Up next: Where to stay, when to leave?? The planning begins!
     
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  3. TopRowSeat

    TopRowSeat Married to a DIS Veteran

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    You're doing good so far, especially this part....

     
  4. mariaelenak

    mariaelenak DIS Veteran

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    You crack me up!
     
  5. jedijill

    jedijill <font color=red>Chiefs fan living in Bronco countr

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    Can't wait to read more!

    Jill in CO
     
  6. Toria

    Toria It all started with a mouse

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    Waiting for more.
     
  7. Coconuts

    Coconuts DIS Veteran

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    Joining in.:thumbsup2 We are on the 8/25 sailing, and have a DS 11yo, so I can't wait to hear about your trip.

    Gee, I guess this is your wonderful husband?;) Too funny.:laughing:
     
  8. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    Now that we had the cruise booked - I started to plan. How many days we would spend in NYC, where to stay...

    We were driving, so I was looking for hotels in Manhattan that would have easy parking and that would not be too difficult to drive to. After many hours looking at reviews, I booked us at The Travel Inn on W. 42nd St. It is the only hotel in Manhattan that has FREE parking. It is also easy to get to - just a few left turns after coming out of the Lincoln Tunnel.

    We decided that we would leave Friday morning, June 1st, bright and early. We could drop our dog Bella off at Pooch Palace at 7:00. The drive from NE Ohio is about 6.5 hours, so that would get us into the city in the afternoon, giving us a few hours to do some sightseeing.

    The months went by - very slowly. I created a Facebook group for our cruise which worked out great! I have met some great ladies through that group and I hope I can meetup with them again in the future. We would chat endlessly about the cruise and it was great to give tips to the newbies. It did help the time go by. We also decided to be in the Fish Extender group so I had the gifts to plan.

    As we got closer to departure time we decided that we wanted more time on Friday in the city, so we decided to leave Thursday evening after baseball game/soccer practice. We would leave around 9:00 and just drive 3 or so hours and get a hotel in central PA for the night. This would make the drive much shorter in the morning thus giving us more time in the city!

    Thursday, May 31st finally arrived. We had all the bags packed the night before so the day went pretty smooth. Steve worked, I mowed the lawn and dropped Bella off at her home away from home. Shawn's team won their game and he got the game ball. A great way to start the trip. When we got into the car at 8:45 to leave, our GPS said that we would get to the hotel at 3:15 am. Steve is a night owl and can easily stay up that late. So we went for it. I called the hotel and they had space for us that night. It was a very easy drive and there was NO traffic getting into the city!

    We arrived at 3:30 am and were a sleep by 4:00.

    Next up: Our day in NYC.

     
  9. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    Thanks - are you going to join in??

    He thinks he is funny Maria :confused3

    Thanks for joining in.

    Thanks for reading.
    That would be my wonderful husband :) We had a great time and Matt loved the Edge.
     
  10. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    I think I woke up around 8:00 or so - too excited to sleep. We got put together and decided to get a bagel at the deli that was next to our hotel.

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    We then decided that a good way to see the city would be to do one of the double-decker bus tours.

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    We did the uptown tour first.

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    We got off the bus and walked around Central Park for a bit.

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    Next we headed to FAO Schwarz. Shawn loved the BIG Piano.

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    We continued to walk back towards Times Square

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    Next we hopped back on the bus for the Downtown tour

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    By the time we finished the downtown tour we were getting pretty hungry so we headed to W44th St and John's Pizzeria. The pizza was very good - so was the margarita.

    We then walked through Times Square which was CRAZY and decided to call it a day and head back to the hotel. I think we got back around 7:00 and we were out by 8:00.

    Next up: Time to see the Magic!
     
  11. ByKnight

    ByKnight Look out WORLD here we come!

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    I am one of the first timers you talk about as we are going on our first Disney cruise in September on the Wonder. I am looking forward to learning from your experience.
     
  12. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    If you have any questions ask away. My first cruise was on the Wonder in 2000. You will have a great time.
     
  13. dawne98

    dawne98 DIS Veteran

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    when I lived in NYC for 5 years we would go to John's Pizzeria all the time it is the best!!! :)
     
  14. TopRowSeat

    TopRowSeat Married to a DIS Veteran

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    My turn...

    Let's be clear here. Sparky was acting like a 6 year old on Christmas morning. The rest of us would have been happy to sleep another couple hours. (wait until you hear what time she was up on sailaway day! )

    Another note... while the room served our needs nicely clearly it was not made for American-sized adults. Now I used to be north of 300 pounds.. thankfully I'm not anymore or there is no way I would be able to fit into the shower. It was a quarter-sized tub with full size shower doors so the opening was TINY. I made it in and out but definitely squeegied both sides in both directions. I may have had more room climbing over the top than trying to use the actual door.

    What? And skip right over my brush with a star?

    As we were walking up (down?) 42nd street towards Madame Tussaud's two women leaning against the wall said something to another woman walking towards me. She smiled nodded and kept on walking. When she got to me I was surprised to realize that I recognized her. It was Whoopi Goldberg strolling 42nd street headed to... somewhere Whoopi-ish... or some place that would become more Whoopi-ful when she arrived.

    The bus tour is HIGHLY dependent on how good your guide is. The woman on this bus did a great job and we enjoyed this one.

    The downtown tour was spitting rain and FREEZING cold for those of us in shorts. There were some interesting facts along the way (none of which I can remember at this moment) but we were all too chilly to really enjoy this one.

    I especially liked that the circle tour of downtown NYC forces everyone to get off half a dozen blocks from where you get on. It wasn't quite the circle I expected.

    Overall for having just one day in NYC the bus tours were a nice way to get a glimpse of the city.

    The pizza was good, the building is beautiful, the beer was good, your margarita was about 80% tequila....

    By now we were all pretty much done. The short night, touristy day (and that margarita) left us all ready for bed knowing we had another busy day on tap tomorrow.

    So... let's start the pool... what time do you think my Disney nerd wife was awake on boarding day?
     
  15. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    It was really good. We are going to Chicago in July and going to get a deep dish to compare NYC/Chicago pizza.

    Don't let him fool you everyone - he is as big of a Disney nerd as the rest of us :).
     
  16. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    Yes, as my wonderful husband noted above, I do get very excited when we travel and always wake early. Since we were exhausted from our day and were asleep by 8:00 - of course I was up at 2:00! I checked the location of the Magic on my phone and tried to go back to sleep. I did sleep a little more. At almost 5:00, I woke again and checked the location of the ship again and it was just about at the Verazano-Narrows bridge - so I watched her sail into the harbor on my phone :)

    I watched the beautiful ship sail in for a bit then I did fall back asleep for a couple hours. I'm not sure what time everyone got up - but we were ready to leave the hotel around 8:30. We walked up the street to a diner and had breakfast. Around 10:00 we loaded into the car for the 1 mile drive to the terminal.

    The traffic was not too bad but it did take a few lights before we were able to pull into the terminal area. We waited inline to drop off our luggage. Steve later found out that we should have gone straight up to the parking as they had porters there.

    When we did get up to Pier 90 - Shawn and I got out with the luggage as Steve and Matt went to park the van.

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    We walked in and found that they were not going to let anyone in through security until 11:00 - so we just sat and waited. I noticed a DIS/Facebook friend right away by their lime green lei and went to say hello. It was Michelle from Denver. Her and her daughter had taken the red-eye and had been at the terminal for awhile. Not too long after that I spotted Darlene. It was so great seeing all of the people that I had been chatting with for months.

    At 11:00 the line to go through security formed. As soon as Shawn and I got in line, I spotted Steve and Matt so we were all together. The line moved fairly quickly and we were soon through security and into the Castaway Club line (which was longer than the first-timer line). This did move a little slower than it seems to at Port Canaveral. I spotted a few more friends, Brook, Maria and Heather.

    After we got through the line, Matt and I found a seat and I got to chat with Brook and meet Joe and Henry. I have been reading Brook's (brookelizabeth) trip reports for years so it was nice to finally meet them. Steve and Shawn went and stood in the line to get Shawn's kids club wrist band.

    At abound noon, they started boarding. We had received boarding number 3 so it would not be long! Matt and I went over to check on the kids club line and they were next up. As soon as they were done checking Shawn in - they called group 3. We got our boarding pictures.

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    As we were getting our cards swiped to be able to board, my card would not work. We had to wait while the cast member printed out a new card and then we were able to board. It is so nice hearing your name as you walk into the beautiful atrium!

     
  17. TopRowSeat

    TopRowSeat Married to a DIS Veteran

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    Not a lot to add here...

    So... you were awake early enough that if you hurried you could have still made it to the bar before it closed. Just sayin'

    Ugh, the pickup / dropoff lane was crazy. We sat, squeezed, wiggled and finally made our way to drop off on pier 90. I kept Matt with me to help keep an eye on signs and then proceeded to ignore most of them. I found myself in the right lane needing to make a left turn where I'm pretty sure I saw a "No Left Turn" sign. Yeah, well....

    After my left turn we waiting again a couple of lights to turn back into the port. This time we made the lovely right turn at the top of the ramp towards parking. I was prepared for the bill but still choked a little on the $280 parking charge.

    The security guy and security dog gave us a once over but we must not have looked or smelled too dangerous so they let us pass.

    The rest of it was all... fine... Not nearly as smooth and efficient as Port Canaveral. They appeared to be having computer problems but I'm not sure if it was the computer system itself or the people trying to use them that were the problem.

    The Castaway Club check in line moved along ok but then we moved to the kid club line... I was getting rather impatient at this point. They only had two computers available to get wristbands for the kid's clubs. That line just inched along. By the time we got through that one I had been in one line or another for almost 90 minutes and I was ready for a drink. They called our number almost immediately and we were herding through to the pre-boarding photo (also known as the skinny photo) and off to the ship!

    Whoops... not so fast.. after the photo it seems that Disney was having second thoughts about allowing one of us to board the ship. I don't think it was a coindidence that Kristi's card didn't work. It was painful to stand there an extra few minutes and wait while she got a new card... so close to heaven but yet so far.

    Finally they decided that she wasn't dangerous and we were allowed to enter....
     
  18. GreenCntryGirl

    GreenCntryGirl The DIS keeps me up past my bedtime.

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    :::gasp:::

    There is no comparison! Chicago rocks!

    But, I may be a little biased.
     
  19. Sleepingbooty

    Sleepingbooty DIS Veteran

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    Hi Kristi and Steve! You are already farther along in your report than I am- I guess I need to get on the ball!

    The bus tour sounds fun- I wish we'd gotten in a little earlier and had more time to spend in New York. You guys are brave to drive in, I am totally intimidated by the way people drive there- I'd probably have a coronary!
     
  20. TopRowSeat

    TopRowSeat Married to a DIS Veteran

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    Ah... you see we moved to Ohio a few years ago: "Home of the worst drivers in the country" I think that may actually be the state motto.

    I've learned lots of bad habits in Ohio that translated nicely to driving in NYC.

    It wasn't too bad really. Arriving in the city at 3:30AM helped keep the stress level down and then on Sunday morning the traffic was again pretty light for the trip out. The only real driving excitement was trying to loop around from the dropoff lane back to the port parking.
     
  21. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    Our boys are going to camp for a week in July, so Steve and I are going to head to Chicago for 3 nights. I will have to let you know how the Chicago pizza fairs with us.

    HI Rebecca - We lucked out with getting into the city early. I'm sure it would have been more difficult had we arrived during the morning.

    I agree with Steve - Ohio has some of the worst drivers.
     

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