Disney Magic and Marvel… A few of my favorite things April 15th- April 20th

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by EDS19, May 11, 2018.

  1. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Disney Magic and Marvel… A few of my favorite things April 15th- April 20th
    5-Night Western Caribbean Cruise from Miami with Marvel Day at Sea

    I recently returned from my very first Disney Cruise. It was an AMAZING experience (and that is truly an understatement). I was aboard the Disney Magic traveling with one of my good friends. Neither of us had ever been on a Disney Cruise (or even a Cruise for that matter) so as you can imagine there were a lot of “firsts” and other magical moments.
    The cruise itinerary went as follows:
    April 15th – Depart Miami
    April 16th – Day at Sea (Marvel Day at Sea)
    April 17th – Grand Cayman
    April 18th – Day at Sea (Pirate Night)
    April 19th – Castaway Cay
    April 20th – Return to Miami

    I’ve always wanted to go on a Disney Cruise and experience Castaway Cay... When I heard about Marvel Day at Sea that pushed me over the edge, being a huge Disney and Marvel fan made this the perfect first cruise for me. Each day was magical and fun. The one slightly down moment of the cruise was that we were unable to go to Grand Cayman due to swells in the water and since Grand Cayman doesn’t have a port the tender boats couldn’t safely get us to the island.

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    For now I’ll just give some highlights and in future posts I can get into more specifics.


    The food was most certainly a highlight. I had a great time at each of the rotational restaurants. It was very fun to experience the new Rapunzel’s Royal table.
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    In my day to day life I’m not a huge eater, but you better believe when there are Disney and Marvel themed desserts and dishes I go to town.

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    Brunch at Palo was also wonderful. I had heard great things from many of you and it lived up to all the reviews.
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    Marvel Day at Sea was AMAZING. Even if you are just a mild Marvel fan I think you would have a great time. The show at the end of the day was really great.

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    #RoomService

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    Castaway Cay was amazing! Stingrays, Snorkeling, Jet Skies, 5K, BBQ... So fun

    I'll end this highlights post with a little highlights video from the cruise:


    Once again it was an amazing trip and I'll post more soon!
    Thanks for all the trips and previous trip reports that helped me prepare!

    Table of Contents:

    Day 1 – Depart Miami
    Day 2 – Day at Sea (Marvel Day at Sea)
    Day 3 – Grand Cayman
    Day 4 – Day at Sea (Pirate Night)
    Day 5 – Castaway Cay
    Day 6 – Return to Miami

    I’ll update these with links as I post more about the trip.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  2. chamberlain

    chamberlain Mouseketeer

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    Great video! Can't wait for the full trip report. Will definitely be following along.
     
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  4. cadien

    cadien DIS Veteran

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    I was on the Marvel cruise two weeks after yours and agree with everything.
     
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  5. mmmears

    mmmears DIS Veteran

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    Great start! I'll be following along. Can you let me know which camera you used for the video? We'll be on the Magic this summer for the first time and I'm hoping to make a nice video to help us remember the trip. Thanks for sharing!
     
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  6. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    For the under water shots and the clips on the Jet ski's I was using the GoPro Hero 5 Black (The price came down a few months ago so its like a $100 less then it used to be.) But for the majority of the clips in that video I used the Canon SX610 HS. It isn't my "Nice Camera" its just a cheaper one I bought that i can keep in my pocket because it is small. But it does a good job with video in most light conditions.

    Thanks! I'll be posting more about the trip soon!
     
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  7. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Day 1 - Walking on to the Ship and Rapunzel's Royal Table for Dinner

    We arrived in Miami on Saturday night (the cruise began on Sunday) just FYI we stayed at the Hampton Inn Blue Lagoon by the airport. I had booked a room several months out and so it was only $160 which we didn't think was bad. It wasn't amazing but not it was great for what we needed. And they had a little breakfast in the morning so that made life easy. We took an Uber over to the port and it only cost like $20 with the tip.

    Since this was our first Disney Cruise we were only able to made reservations for the meet and greets, special meals, etc. 75 days out. I had been worried we wouldn't get everything we wanted because I had been reading other reviews of people not getting the meet and greets they wanted and having to check in really late on the ship because of the time they reserved. We actually got everything we wanted... Maybe not at the exact time that would have been ideal but we were able to book a Palo Brunch and meet and greets with the Princesses, Frozen Character, Groot, and the special Iron Man, Spider-Man, Black Panther meet and greet. Plus our time to arrive at the ship was 12 pm. So I felt like that was great for our first time on a Disney Cruise.

    As I mentioned in my initial post, neither me or my buddy had ever been on a cruise ship before. So we were both excited but not fully sure what to expect.
    Getting through security wasn't bad, and there were a ton of people in the waiting area waiting for their number to be called... But because of the number we were assigned we were able to go right in.

    Walking on to the ship for the first time was unforgettable! So magical and so fun as they announce your name and all cheer for you.
    While I know the Magic is the oldest ship you really wouldn't know that just by looking at the ship alone. It recently returned from a Dry Dock and it looked beautiful. Plus crew members were always working hard to clean, sand, fix things around the ship.

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    We spent a little bit of time exploring the ship waiting for our room to open to drop off our smaller day bag and camera bag that we wanted to keep with us.
    I didn't take a picture of the room but I have a clip of it in a video that I will post below. We were on Deck 5 in the Aft with one of the Navigator Veranda's. I had heard both great and some mixed reviews of this area of the ship. We really enjoyed the location for getting to everything else. (Especially for the nightly meals and character meet and greets) Yes there were some vibrations at night that woke me and my friend up the first night. But once we got used to those it really wasn't a problem. If you are a light sleeper maybe bring some ear plugs and maybe just a little sleep medicine or something but after the first night we were fine.

    And I really liked the Navigator veranda. It felt like a private extension of our room cut off from all the other veranda's.
    As we dropped things off our All-Star room host came by to meet us and every time he would see us he would greet us by name and ask questions about how we were enjoying things. He was SO GREAT.

    I know some people hate going to Cabana's the first day of the cruise because it is pretty hectic, but we were going about 2 hours after it had opened... And we wanted to dive in to the whole experience and it was a great first meal. It wasn't over crowded and everything after that first meal didn't seem crowded at all :)
    As you can see... I mostly ate like a 6 year old for my first meal.
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    After exploring some more and doing the safety drill we were able to watch the adventure away show. It was also a fun way to start the cruise.
    We ate some ice cream, headed down to the room and were shocked when we looked out the window and saw that we were moving because we couldn't feel it. Haha.

    Although once we got into the open water we started to feel the waves but it was a fun first moment to realize we were sailing away.

    That evening we saw Twice Charmed. I really enjoyed this show, it wasn't my favorite of the three but it was something different then the usual Cinderella story and I thought the effects were pretty good for being on a ship. Plus the cast was awesome.

    Earlier in the day we had checked to see if our request to be seated alone had worked out. They said we were currently alone, but we were at a big table so it is possible others would be put there if someone requested a time change. The head serve said if we were willing to change rotations he had a table just for us. (We knew it might be fun to meet other people but at the same time it was our first cruise so that idea was still unnerving to us.) So he switched which restaurant we would start in... So on our first night we went to the new Rapunzel's Royal Table.

    The decor is really nice. I love the lantern's for lights. The live music, songs and interactions throughout the night are fun. Rapunzel and Flynn drop by each table and say hello.

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    The food was also amazing! I had the tangled Pasta and some really good salad. And look at the detail on that bread bowl!!!

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    And since this restaurant is new and I love all things Disney any dessert that had some Tangled themed name... (or if it just sounded good) we ordered. Haha
    They were all great but the chocolate tower cake was my favorite for taste. The Fry bread in the Fry pan won for being the most adorable.
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    We ended the night by going to see Captain Mickey and then to see some of the "hired" entertainment who did a little variety show for adults that night.
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    This was the perfect start to a wonderful vacation and it was only day one!

    Thanks for following along. And if I missed any details that would be helpful if you are planning a trip on the Magic let me know and I can try to answer.
    I left out plenty of details so if you have any desire to see more here is my video from day 1:



    Get excited for day 2... Marvel Day at Sea and Palo!
     
  8. suedon70

    suedon70 Mouseketeer

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    Love your report so far! My daughter and I are doing the same MDAS itinerary in January 2019 and we also haven't been on the Magic yet so I'm very excited to read about your trip!
     
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  9. Disney Fam of 3

    Disney Fam of 3 Earning My Ears

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    Enjoying it so far! We're going on this same cruise next March as a big family trip (grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins - the whole gang) so I'm all in on reading about your experience!
     
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  10. xavier2001

    xavier2001 Mouseketeer

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    Following along, we are doing this same itinerary in January. Love all the photos so far!
     
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  11. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 - Start of Marvel Day at Sea and Palo!

    The first night at sea we could really feel the waves and we could hear some vibration from the ship. As I’ve mentioned for both my friend and I this was our first cruise so we weren’t sure if this was normal or more intense than usual… But after the first night it was never as windy or rocky and the vibrations were never as bad so it really was just the weather that first night.

    Even with some rough weather we woke-up excited for our first full day on the ship and for Marvel Day at Sea! I am a big Marvel fan so having this special day at sea was one of the things that pushed me towards picking this itinerary. My buddy likes Marvel films but isn’t a huge fan like I am… So I’ll give you the review from both me as a big fan and him as a regular every day fan.

    We started the morning with our ticketed “Heroic Encounter – Mission New York” at 9:30. We were able to meet Spider-Man, Black Panther, and Iron Man. Even though this was a ticketed event this was the longest line we waited in all week. It still wasn’t too bad though, like 20 minutes. I was impressed to the length they went to theme the D lounge. Not only did they have backdrops set up they had moved all the chairs out and put up curtains around the whole room with the New York Skyline. I thought this was so fun and other then Hong Kong Disneyland this is the only place you can meet Iron Man. My friend also had a good time chatting with the characters.
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    Next we were off to our one non-Marvel event of the day… Brunch at Palo!

    As many of you know Palo is the Adult restaurant that is on each ship and on Sea days they offer Brunch. This brunch has an amazing buffet and also menu items! There is an up-charge of $30 per person, but spoiler alert… We thought it was totally worth it. The brunch also comes with a mimosa, but since we don’t drink our server happily offered us some sparkling cider. He then took us on a tour of the buffet. In my video at the end of this post I’ve included his tour because there is no way I could describe all the wonderful food that was offered. I started off with the breakfast pastries.
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    Palo was amazing right from the start, everyone was greeting us and the servers were so friendly. Our server did an excellent job. The food was delicious. From the menu the Mickey waffle were nothing extra special, but was still very good the margarita pizza was delicious. I feel like the best items were those that are originally from Italy like the chicken Parmesan and the Lasagna both were amazing.

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    I don’t even know what to say about the desserts! So fun. And I love that they have a small size for the desserts so you really can have a bite of each.
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    Overall Palo was an amazing experience. It’s not just about the food, it’s the beautiful restaurant, the views of the ocean, the unique food you might not otherwise try, and the excellent service.

    Each post can only hold so many photos so that will have to do it for this post...
    If you want to see more food images from Palo you can see them here:


    The next time I post I'll share more about Marvel Day at Sea and why we had to go off course!
    If you have any specific questions related to my experience let me know.
    Thanks!
     
  12. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 - More Marvel Day at Sea

    When we were done at Palo… And basically ready to roll out, we headed over quickly to meet Loki, and then our Heroic encounter with Groot. It was also fun to randomly see Marvel characters roaming on deck’s 3, 4, and 5. That is where we stopped to talk to Hawkeye for a bit.

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    We watched a little bit of the costume celebration where different guest’s show off their costumes. Having read other people‘s post about their trip I knew that at the end of the costume celebration Mickey and his friends would come dressed in their Marvel outfits… I also knew that after they showed up we would have an opportunity to take pictures with them around the atrium so we lined up right where I knew Mickey and Minnie would end up (pays to read these boards) And we were able to get pictures with Mickey and Minne, Donald and Daisy and Chip and Dale. It was extra fun to get those pictures of them in their costumes and it was nice not to have to wait later in the night for these pictures.
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    We then met Thor and then relaxed for a bit. We briefly stopped by to see the “Draw Captain America” activity. It was a little more complex then the usual “How to draw” activities I’ve done at California Adventure so we then headed over to get a seat for the USO – Star Spangled Show. This little show was one of the highlights of the day. For about 20 minutes they sing songs that were largely from the World War II era but they do an Amazing job! The older guests really seemed to like it, and they included some clips about Captain America and some audience participation so the kids seemed to enjoy it too. This is no Fantasmic or World of Color but it is a sold little show and I would make time to see it if you get to experience Marvel Day at Sea.
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    It was then announced the ship was going off course because they had received word a small boat was having trouble nearby. It turns out their engine had died and they had been stuck out there for a day or two. And we also heard someone was injured on the boat. For a brief moment some people thought this was all part of Marvel day at sea but no… This was a real boat having real problems. They sent some Disney crew members out to check on them and eventually a French Navy ship came to their aid and we were able to continue on.

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    Next we saw the Dr. Strange stage show. Once again this isn’t meant to be like a “Tangled” musical or anything of that level. But for a smaller “Jedi Training” type show it was fun to see the kids participate and they still had some really cool effects. Both with the projections, pyrotechnics and flying.

    In my next post I'll talk about the Marvel Day at Sea dinner Menu and the Hero's Unite Deck Show!
     
  13. MickeyD

    MickeyD DIS Veteran

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    I am really enjoying your report and your vlogs! I am kicking around booking a MDAS for next Feb. DH, wants a longer cruise, but they are all SWDAS and (much to my son's dismay) neither of us know a THING about Star wars! (gasp!) I am more a Trekkie (ducking), and completely into Marvel, so would much rather do that. It looks like you had some good interactions with the characters. May I ask what you say to them? Weird question, but I am shy and wonder what to say to them, and how easy they are to interact with--especially as adults.
    Can't wait to read more!
     
  14. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Glad you are enjoying it so far (and sorry its taking me a while to post more... Life gets busy.)

    I think you all would love the Cruise as a whole but especially Marvel Day at Sea. Even those who weren't big Marvel fans were commenting on how they enjoyed the different entertainment options that day.

    For character interactions... As I explain to my friends that travel with me you just have to remember you are talking to "the real" character... So for a more classic Disney example we asked Belle what books she had been reading and I talked to Tiana about my favorite meals on the cruise and she talked about how she would spice them up, etc. So for Spider-Man we talked a little bit about what he was enjoying on the cruise vs. the usual big city... So he talked about what he had been up to on the ship and some funny NYC stories (needless to say people on the cruise are nicer then most cab drivers in New York). We asked Loki if he was getting into mischief on the ship and he had some good responses to that. And asking Thor waht adventures he has recently gone on. They were all great and would ask fun question back. Hope that helps.

    I really liked the character interactions on the ship because they never felt rushed and the lines were never too long.
     
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  15. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 - Marvel Day at Sea Dinner!

    Before Dinner the personal navigator said the super heroes would be around the Lobby right before the 2nd dinner seating so we were able to catch Star Lord and Gamora.
    Several of the characters were running around the atrium like Spider-man, Loki, etc. so if you hadn't seen them earlier you could get a quick photo. (keep in mind there wasn't any official photographers but they were happy to still take a picture if you had your camera.)

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    Then it was off to Dinner. The dinner was delicious! We were in Rapunzel’s Royal table again and not much of the scenery changed other than the music (and the glasses weren’t the fancy Rapunzel ones) The menu of course had changed to Marvel Day at Sea. It was a fun comic book the menu and each of the items we got was delicious.

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    We ordered:

    Marbled Bread with Red Pepper Dip (not pictured)

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    Iron Man - Californian Cherry and Walnut Salad - This salad was excellent!
    Captain America – Farmhouse Appetizer (in the top corner behind the salad) - My friend loved this and ate it all.

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    Iron Man - Chilled Californian Avocado Soup - This wasn't amazing but something fun to try on the cruise.

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    Grilled Delmonico Rib Eye Steak with Black Truffle Butter- This was SO GOOD!

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    Baked Buttermilk Corn-Fed Chicken - We both loved our main dish.

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    Bounty Hunter
    Pastry treasure chest filled with Raspberry and Custard


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    Awesome Mixed Sunday
    Rocket Road Ice Cream, Red Velvet menteors and Molten Chocolate Sauce.

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    Southern Nights
    Vanilla Cheesecake on a Pecan Nut Custard Base and Salted Caramel Sauce
    I loved this dessert... Actually all the desserts were great!

    We both really loved this meal, there wasn't any special dinner show or anything but it was a fun night with excellent food. If you get to go on a Marvel Day at Sea cruise make sure you order the different items you want to try even if that means you get multiple desserts or share a few appetizers. Its a special night and one you likely won't get to repeat it on a future cruise.

    I've hit my limit of 10 images for this post. In my next post all talk about the amazing deck show "Heroes Unite!"
     
  16. MickeyD

    MickeyD DIS Veteran

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    Yay! Glad to see an update! Love the pics, but that Star Lord is no Chris Pratt! LOL
    Thank you for answering my question about character interaction, that seems easy and fun.
    I am really wanting to see Rapunzel's Table and some of the other updates to the Magic. I haven't been on the Magic since 2012!
     
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  17. chunkymonkey

    chunkymonkey DIS Veteran

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    Thank you for sharing your report! I just finished my TR for our MDAS cruise and I am so happy to re-live it again on everyone else's TR!
    Looking forward to more!
     
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  18. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    End of Day 2 (Marvel Day at Sea) - Start of Day 3 (Grand Cayman... at least we thought)

    To end off Marvel Day at Sea was the awesome Heroes Unite Deck Show. While this was my first cruise, I can say compared to Pirates Night Deck Party and the YouTube videos I’ve seen of the Star Wars Day at sea Deck party… The Marvel show outshines them all. Where the Pirate party has a loose story and is more of a Dance party, and the Star Wars show seemed more like a clip highlight show with characters just waking out related to specific clips, the Heroes Unite show had a story/plot, new original footage, humor, and some rather clever ways they included the fireworks. Plus decent special effects and stunts. I don’t want to give too much away but know that it was Awesome and very fun! We had second seating at dinner and tried to hurry but we still didn't get the exact spots I had hoped for on Deck 10... so that meant we were on Deck 9 but we still had a great view and later on some of the characters even mentioned seeing us near the front.
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    The next day we were VERY excited to go to Grand Cayman. We had booked a port adventure to go to Stingray City and in the afternoon we had planned to have lunch at a cool restaurant and then visit the Turtle Center. We woke up early, had breakfast at Cabana’s (you can never have too many Mickey Waffles.)
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    Then we headed down to where our Port Adventure was meeting. They then announced that since Grand Cayman doesn’t have a port and we had to use the tender boats to get there we would be unable to leave at this time due to swells in the water. For about two hours we were still hopeful that we wouldn’t miss Stingray City but after that point they announced all port adventures were cancelled and then shortly after that they announced no one would be able to go to shore. I’m grateful they look out for our safety. But still sad we had to miss what we had planned.


    But even when things get cancelled you can’t get too upset because you still are on an amazing ship, with fun things to do, great food, etc.


    We decided to try to see a movie (but those filled up way early since everyone now had a free day to fill) so I spend a good deal of my time catching up with some of the characters, relaxing, exploring the ship, and even did one of the crafts which was fun. My friend spend the afternoon reading and relaxing on one of the upper decks.
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    As the day progressed the characters started to get into their formal outfits, since it was formal night.

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    I was impressed with how Disney and all the Cast Members still made this a fun day. When many Cast Members had planned not to be on the ship (in part because they Fantasy was also supposed to go to Grand Cayman that day so they were excited to see friends on the other ship) they all pitched in to add extra activities, and fun.

    This was also the night we were able to see Tangled the Musical. I think this was my favorite stage show/musical during the cruise. They did an AMAZING job, the singing, dancing, effects, sets, etc. all of it was wonderful. And there are a few new songs too. Very Very fun!

    For formal night I thought it was fitting we were in Lumiere’s.

    For Appetizers we had the Duck Confit, Breaded and Deep Fried Brie, and Gastons Escargot Gratinee. It was my first time trying Escargot… And I was shocked that it wasn’t bad at all. In fact I think I liked it a bit (you can see more of that on my video below).
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    I had the French Onion Soup and My friend had the Potage Parmentier (Leek and Potato Soup) I personally liked his soup better than my French Onion Soup. Not that it was bad, just liked the other one better.

    We both LOVE our main dishes… Oven-Baked Salmon Royale and Roasted Rack of Lamb. I would order both again in a heartbeat.
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    And we were so full that night we only ordered two desserts… But our server made sure we had four of them… haha


    Souffle, Apple Tart, Crème Brulee, and Straberry Shortcake Sundae.
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    To end the night we went to see Minnie in her formal outfit. I love how much time the characters are willing to spend with each person on the cruise… I just returned from a trip to Disneyland and there were several instances where the cast members would make it clear we needed to get in and out as fast as possible… Made me miss the more relaxed vibes from the cruise.

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    So while we had hoped to see Grand Cayman it was still a fun day… And the other good news is as soon as they announced all Grand Cayman port adventures were cancelled we ran down to the port adventure desk and added the Stingray Adventure to our plans at Castaway Cay… So more of that to come in the future.

    Here is the Vlog of our day:



    As always thanks for reading and if you have any questions I'd be happy to answer based on my experience. Thanks!
     
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  19. EDS19

    EDS19 Mouseketeer

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    Thanks so much! I loved reading your report of the Magic and also Marvel Day at sea! It totally helped me prepare for my trip :)
     
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  20. chunkymonkey

    chunkymonkey DIS Veteran

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    I loved the Marvel Show too. While the Pirate night is fun, this one really took it to the next level with the choreographed fights and the characters making use of the entire deck area. SWDAS was really lacking.
    The food you ordered during MDAS looks great! I think I got the same steak.
    I love the characters in their formal clothes! Too bad you guys didn't get to stop in Grand Cayman - we didn't do much there if that helps but we didn't book any excursions either. Just walked around, got lunch, and then went back to the ship. Hopefully you got to do the Stingray adventure on Castaway Cay!

    Thanks for reading! :)
     
  21. cadien

    cadien DIS Veteran

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    I really loved how they did the fireworks too. My 7-year old totally bought into it.
     
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