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Top Ten Things to Do at Castaway Cay with Disney Cruise Line

posted on December 6th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


There’s no doubt Castaway Cay is a Disney Cruise Line guest favorite, and as I’ve shared this week, it is one of mine, too! Now that I’ve given you some of my insider tips, here are my picks for the top ten things to do on Castaway Cay.

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Start your day off relaxed with yoga on the beach.
Be one of the first off the ship and to the peaceful Serenity Bay for morning yoga, one of the many fitness classes included in your cruise. You’ll practice relaxing yoga techniques on the warm sand of this pristine beach, just steps away from calm, turquoise waters.

Get wet from head to toe with swimming, snorkeling and floating.
Castaway Family Beach is home to special swimming and snorkeling lagoons for those who want to cool off. You can drift on floats or in inner tubes, swim with tropical fish and search for sunken treasures, including a hidden Mickey!

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Get up-close and personal with stingrays.
Castaway Ray’s Stingray Adventure gives you the chance to feed, touch and snorkel with stingrays in a private lagoon. This up-close encounter also includes a fun info session led by a marine specialist with interesting facts about stingrays.

Enjoy the crystal clear water from above.
Parasailing, water cycling, paddle boating, paddle boarding, kayaking and sailboating are all ways you can enjoy the ocean without even getting in it. Of course, I recommend at least dipping your toes in these warm, tropical waters!

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Make a huge splash at Pelican Plunge.
Just a short swim from shore, venture to the floating Pelican Plunge for tons of get-wet fun. A giant “bucket dump” is sure to soak you, and two water slides – one open and the other enclosed – take you on a twisting ride into the lagoon.

Take a photograph with your favorite Disney friends.
Enjoy lots of photo ops with Disney characters in their island attire. Character meet-and-greets in front of iconic backdrops like the ship and Mt. Rustmore make for great family pictures!

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Explore the 1,000-acre island on foot or bicycle.
There are a number of paths to the island’s interior that can be explored either on foot or bicycle. The morning runDisney Castaway Cay 5K is a great way to get to know the island and take in the lush tropical landscape, without costing you a thing!

Send “snail mail” from the Bahamian post office.
Castaway Cay has its own post office where you can send a message to family and friends back home. Bahamian stamps are required, making it even more fun to mail a souvenir postcard to yourself to commemorate your time on the island!

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Climb the 40-foot-tall observation tower.
For a breathtaking view of Castaway Cay and the ship in the distance, you can journey down the bike trail toward the interior of the island and climb 47 steps to the top of the observation tower. Don’t forget your camera!

Join in on a unique family activity like only Disney can do.
One-of-a-kind island activities are great ways for your family to have fun together. Cheer on a new “friend” in our crab races or excavate artificial whale bones and other fossilized treasures in the Family Whale Dig.

My list is only a starting point for all of the fun you can have on our private island! You can find out even more things to do at VisitCastawayCay.com.

If you’ve joined us at Castaway Cay before, what are your top ten things to do there?

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Insider Tips for Enjoying Castaway Cay

posted on December 4th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Ever since my first visit, Castaway Cay has been one of my absolute favorite travel destinations. I’ve been lucky enough to visit the island many times, including an overnight stay and a day there with only Disney friends for special projects. Along the way, I’ve discovered several ways to make a day at this paradise island even more magical.

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Next time you cruise to Castaway Cay, I hope you find these insider tips helpful:

  1. Reserve the Castaway Cay Getaway Package, including snorkel equipment, a float and a bicycle, online or onboard prior to arrival at Castaway Cay. This discounted package is not available once you’re on the island.
  2. Leave your towels and strollers on the ship. Beach towels and beach-ready strollers and wagons are available for complimentary use on Castaway Cay.
  3. Wear plenty of sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat for protection from the strong Bahamian rays. And if you forget these or any other beach essentials, pick them up at “Buy the Sea Shore” on the island.
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  5. Check out the island’s character meet-and-greet schedule in your Personal Navigator. You won’t want to miss any of these picture-perfect photo ops!
  6. Bring cash to send mail from the Bahamian post office. At all Disney-run merchandise and beverage locations, you can charge directly to your stateroom account using your Key to the World card.
  7. Eat lunch on the island. A delicious all-you-care-to-eat lunch buffet is served (at no additional cost!) in three locations on Castaway Cay, so you can enjoy more time there without getting back on the ship for mealtime.
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  9. Sneak away for some adult-only time, like a couple’s massage or relaxing in a hammock or lounge chair at Serenity Bay, while the kids hang out with our youth counselors. Your little ones will have a blast at Scuttle’s Cove and your older ones will love snorkeling, biking and kayaking on the teen-exclusive Wild Side adventure.
  10. Take a break from the sun under one of our many covered spaces. Relax at a shaded eating area, or hit up In Da Shade Game Pavilion to play games such as table tennis, foosball, billiards and basketball.
  11. Explore offshore with exciting, water-based Port Adventures. Parasailing, watercraft skiing, bottom fishing, a glass bottom boat ride or a narrated island cruise are all great ways to see the island from different vantage points.
  12. Get your exclusive Castaway Cay merchandise and gifts at “She Sells Sea Shells…and Everything Else”—and have Disney cruise staff deliver your purchases to the ship. You can only get Castaway Cay souvenirs on the island.

Coming up on Friday, I’ll give you my list for the top ten things to do on Castaway Cay. Until then, tell us, what are your best Castaway Cay insider tips?

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Three Disney Cruise Line Ships Sailing from Port Canaveral in Early 2014

posted on December 2nd, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Starting in January, three of our ships will be sailing from Port Canaveral, Fla., giving even more of you the chance to experience two of the magical lands that set Disney apart – Walt Disney World Resort and Castaway Cay.

The Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy already call Port Canaveral home, offering 3- and 4-night cruises to the Bahamas (Disney Dream) and 7-night cruises to the Caribbean (Disney Fantasy). Beginning January 6, 2014, the Disney Magic will also sail 3- and 4-night cruises from there.

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Port Canaveral is just about a one-hour drive from Walt Disney World Resort, which gives you the great option of planning the perfect Disney vacation – both on land and at sea! If you’re still looking for that holiday gift you know your family will love, check out the special price we’re offering on a 3-night Bahamian cruise and a 3-night stay in Walt Disney World Resort for early next year.

We make combining a cruise and resort stay easier for you all year-long with options including motor coach transportation between the port and resort and luggage delivery from the resort to your stateroom. Plus, we’ll even assist with booking your accommodations, theme park tickets and resort food package. Pretty convenient, right?

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Another really exciting part of our sailings from Port Canaveral is that every one of them includes a stop at our private island, Castaway Cay. I’ve traveled around the world to many beautiful places, and Castaway Cay still remains at the top of my list of must-visit destinations! For that reason, I’m putting together a list of insider tips about the island, which I’ll share with you later this week. Stay tuned!

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Happy Thanksgiving from Disney Cruise Line

posted on November 28th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Disney cruisers, we’re counting you in our list of what to be thankful for today! If you’re sailing with us, we hope you enjoy the Thanksgiving Day feast and special turkey towel animal in your stateroom at turndown tonight.

And for those of you who couldn’t make it onboard this week, Thanksgiving Mickey and Minnie send their holiday greetings!
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No matter where you are today, we hope you are enjoying quality time with your family!

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Princess Anna from ‘Frozen’ Joins Disney Cruise Line for the Holidays

posted on November 27th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


You’re probably aware that Disney’s newest film, “Frozen,” debuts today in theaters, but did you know that you can get in on the action at sea, too?

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We are proud to PremEAR all Disney films on our ships the day of their actual release on land. It is one of our Disney differences! But what’s more, starting this week we are surprising our guests with special meet-and-greet opportunities with Princess Anna, one of the stars of the film, who will be onboard throughout the holidays.

If you’re sailing with us over the next several weeks, be sure to share your onboard photos! As I mentioned in my last post, tweet your best images to @DisneyCruise with #DCLHolidays, and be on the lookout for our favorites that we retweet.

Who in your family is most excited about seeing “Frozen” at sea and meeting Princess Anna?

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Share Your Holiday Spirit with Disney Cruise Line

posted on November 25th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


This year, we’re giving even more guests the chance to celebrate the holidays on a Disney cruise. Our Very Merrytime Cruises set sail on November 9 and 10 with beautiful decor throughout the ship and holiday-themed fun for the whole family.
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It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to sail with my family during the holidays, so I have a special request of each of you cruising from now through the New Year: take lots of photographs! We’ve created a special hashtag just for this assignment, and we’ll be waiting for you to tweet your best images to @DisneyCruise with #DCLHolidays.

Here are some of the family-fun activities I’d like to see…

  • Your family meeting Santa Claus and his elves and greeting Disney friends in their holiday attire
  • A young cruiser helping Disney characters light the atrium lobby tree during King Triton’s Tree Lighting Ceremony
  • Families and Disney friends hula hooping, playing limbo under oversized candy canes, dancing to the “Yuletide Slide” and doing a conga line around the pool at the Deck the Deck Holiday Party
  • Family photos in front of the three-deck atrium lobby tree, oversized gingerbread house and other themed decor throughout the ship

Your assignment begins now! I can’t wait to see the results!

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Introducing Royal Tea Aboard the Disney Fantasy

posted on November 20th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


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Families are being treated like royalty in a whole new way aboard the Disney Fantasy! One of our newest family-friendly experiences is Royal Court Royal Tea, an exclusive event that gives you and your little ones a chance to interact with Disney princesses like never before.

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This royal tea party takes place in the Royal Court Restaurant, which is inspired by the classic Disney films “Cinderella,” “Snow White,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Sleeping Beauty.” Adorned with sparkling chandeliers and fanciful icons like glass slippers, apples, roses and tiaras, the elegant dining room is the perfect setting for this fairy tale experience.

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Other Disney friends join the party, too, including Lady Chamomile and Chef Brule who host the event as the Royal Tea Hostess and Royal Pastry Chef. They prove to be welcoming and entertaining hosts — telling stories, dancing and singing renditions of classic Disney tunes — making this a fun and interactive experience by encouraging kids to participate.

Take a look at this video with Cruise Director Lesley as she gives us a special glimpse at this magical teatime, and let us know in the comments if Royal Court Royal Tea is something you’re adding to your family’s bucket list.

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Designed for Families on the Re-imagined Disney Magic

posted on November 15th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Today’s post concludes my virtual tour of the pixie-dusted Disney Magic. I hope you’ve enjoyed hearing more about the ship’s transformation and getting a first look at some of the new spaces and activities waiting for you on your first re-imagined Disney Magic voyage.

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As you’ve seen, we do a fantastic job at providing exclusive experiences for both kids and adults, but we also haven’t forgotten the importance of creating environments for families to have fun together. One of the best areas for family fun is D Lounge, a colorful and contemporary space where game shows, dances and activities are designed for all ages. Your family won’t leave D Lounge without having a huge laugh and a ton of fun!

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In addition to fun of course, one of the most important aspects for traveling families is maintaining some of the comforts of home while being away. That’s why we took extra care when building our ships to ensure families can look to their stateroom as a comfortable home-away-from-home.

Not only are staterooms family-size, they are smartly designed to give your family more usable space. In our pixie dusting of the Disney Magic, we elevated the bed frames to provide storage space underneath. Now, you can slide your large suitcases under the bed and out of the way, giving your family more living space in the stateroom.

What’s more, most staterooms feature a “split bath-and-a-half” with a sink and tub/shower in one room and a sink and toilet in a separate room, a concept we introduced to the cruise industry. Brilliant, right?

So there you have it, the re-imagined Disney Magic! Now that you’ve seen it all, weigh in … what do you think is the coolest enhancement on the first ship of our fleet?

Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog and Disney Cruise Line Facebook page, and follow @DisneyCruise on Twitter for all of the exciting updates about the Disney Magic’s transformation! While you’re on Twitter, join in the conversation by using the hashtag #DisneyMagic.

For more on the Re-Imagined Disney Magic, click the links below:

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New Indulgences at Senses Spa & Salon on the Re-imagined Disney Magic

posted on November 14th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Disney Magic – Senses Spa & Salon
One of the many spaces transformed on the Disney Magic is Senses Spa & Salon. Not only did this ocean-view haven receive a beautiful makeover, from a sleek new reception area to luxurious new treatment areas, the size of the spa was also expanded.
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The additional space allows us to offer even more pampering treatments for adults, like teeth whitening in the new Smile Spa. Plus, we’re now giving teens the chance to relax, too, with the addition of the Chill Spa for cruisers 13 to 17 years of age.
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In the salon, there are additional styling, manicure and pedicure stations with the latest equipment…
New Indulgences at Senses Spa & Salon on the Re-imagined Disney Magic

…and for the gents, a brand-new two-chair barbershop offers a variety of grooming services including haircuts and hot-lathered shaves.

I know where you can find me on my next Disney Magic sea day! How about you?

Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog and Disney Cruise Line Facebook page, and follow @DisneyCruise on Twitter for all of the exciting updates about the Disney Magic’s transformation! While you’re on Twitter, join in the conversation by using the hashtag #DisneyMagic.

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Adult Exclusives on the Re-imagined Disney Magic

posted on November 13th, 2013 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Everyone knows there is plenty of fun for kids on a Disney cruise, but what about the grown-ups? We know you want to feel special, too, which is why every Disney ship has an assortment of areas created specially for our adult guests. On the re-imagined Disney Magic, Walt Disney Imagineers took great care in refreshing the adult-only spaces, starting with our popular Palo restaurant.

Palo received a makeover with stylish wood fixtures, glass artwork panels, new stone floors and decorative lighting. Red and white striped poles reminiscent of those found throughout the canals in Venice, Italy, are one of my favorite new design features. While the look of Palo is enhanced, you can be sure the delicious modern Italian cuisine and elegant dining experience has not changed.

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After dinner, adults can step into After Hours, the secluded area on deck 3 forward that is reserved just for guests 18 and older at night. There are three unique venues here, so you’re sure to spend the evening suited to your own taste.

After Hours – Keys

If it’s a Manhattan cocktail and the soft sounds of a piano that you’re craving, walk on into Keys Piano Bar. The perfect setting to relax, this low-key and refined retreat offers handcrafted cocktails finished tableside and wine served in black-stemmed wine glasses for those wanting a more elegant evening.

After Hours – O’Gill’s Pub

For sports lovers, O’Gill’s Pub is the place to be. This traditional Irish pub and sports bar serves imported and domestic draft beers and liquors, and is equipped with video screens and an updated sound system for live televised athletic events. It’s also a great spot to pull out your favorite board game for a little friendly competition.

After Hours – Fathoms

And if you’re looking for a livelier scene to end your day, head on over to Fathoms, a night club that celebrates the sea by utilizing special effects, lighting and sound to create different atmospheres, ranging from calm to high-energy, throughout the night. Whether you pop on in to enjoy a performance by a singer or comedian in the early evening hours, or you come in with your dancing shoes later in the night, you’re sure to have a blast in this upbeat hot spot.

Now that you’ve seen some of the enhanced locales for both adults and children, the question is, who has more fun on the re-imagined Disney Magic – grown-ups or kids?


Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog and Disney Cruise Line Facebook page, and follow @DisneyCruise on Twitter for all of the exciting updates about the Disney Magic’s transformation! While you’re on Twitter, join in the conversation by using the hashtag #DisneyMagic.

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