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Disney Days of Past: Happy National Travel & Tourism Week

posted on May 7th, 2015 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


It’s National Travel and Tourism week. Dreaming of your next Disney vacation? Here’s a little inspiration from 2007 when Disney Cruise Line rolled out the red carpet for a few famous characters.

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Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Daisy look ready for a magical voyage aboard a Disney Cruise Line ship. Have you been on a Disney cruise? What’s your favorite part? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Top-Five Enchanting Princess Encounters on a Disney Cruise

posted on May 6th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


On a Disney cruise, you’ll not only feel like royalty yourself with our legendary service and first-class accommodations, you’ll actually be in the company of true royalty with several Disney princesses sailing the high seas. Throughout your voyage you’ll have plenty of opportunities to be graced by their presence, but here’s what I’ve selected as the top-five enchanting princess encounters on a Disney cruise.

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Princess Gatherings: The magnificent three-deck atrium lobby on each of our ships is the perfect setting to meet with Disney royalty. A dazzling chandelier and a grand staircase set the stage for an elegant experience as you have the unique chance to greet and take photographs with three or more princesses.

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Royal Court Royal Tea: Royal Court Royal Tea on the Disney Fantasy is truly a one-of-a-kind affair that celebrates the “royal” in everyone. During this afternoon tea event, you and your children are transported to a fairytale world where storytelling meets reality as classic Disney princesses dance and visit around the room.

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Magical Port Adventure: When the Disney Magic sails to Ålesund, Norway, Anna and Elsa accompany Disney cruisers for a traditional Norwegian summer celebration on a Port Adventure like only Disney can do.The festivities culminate with the grand arrival of the beloved sisters and their ice-loving companion, Kristoff, who join in the lively revelry.

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Story Time for Kids: Just for little cruisers, Once Upon a Time is a musical story time where a beloved princess shares tales of her adventures in a faraway kingdom. This special youth activity takes places in Disney’s Oceaneer Club on the Disney Magic, Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy.

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Live Stage Shows: With some of the most elaborate musicals presented at sea, it’s no wonder Disney princesses take center stage in the Walt Disney Theatre. Whether she is the star of the show or a leading role in one of the production numbers, there’s a good chance you’ll spot your favorite heroine singing and dancing in her fairytale world.

Tell us, what’s your most magical memory of a Disney princess onboard one of our ships?

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Exploring the Big Island of Hawai‘i on Two Special Disney Cruise Line Voyages

posted on May 5th, 2015 by Arnaldo Zanonato, Port Adventures Manager


This September, we’re returning to Hawai‘i with two unforgettable 10-night cruises. These voyages will visit the four major Hawaiian islands—the Big Island, Maui, O‘ahu and Kaua‘i. Over the next several weeks, I’ll tell you about some of the exciting Port Adventures you can join to discover the scenery and experiences found on each island. Let’s start today with excursions in historic Hilo, your gateway to the beauty and culture of the Big Island of Hawai‘i, including Volcanoes National Park.

Disney Wonder Calls on Hawaii for the First Time

The park is home to Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes. On our Volcano National Park Odyssey & Macadamia Nut Factory tour, your adventure starts with a drive along the 11-mile crater rim that circles most of Kilauea’s summit caldera and craters. Stops allow you to view smooth and jagged lava, lava tubes, sulfur banks and bleak desert areas. Next up is the Jagger Museum where there are spectacular overlooks into Kilauea Caldera and Halema‘uma‘u Crater, videos of volcanic eruptions and other geologic displays for you to enjoy. Last is a visit to the Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut Factory, the perfect place to shop for delicious gifts.

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If you’re looking for a more active way to explore the area, you won’t want to miss our Kilauea Volcano Bicycle Adventure that takes you around the crater rim on two wheels. In addition to eight miles of cycling, you’ll hike through an incredible rainforest that leads you directly through an amazing lava tube. With steam surrounding your feet, you’ll witness the heart of the volcano at Halema‘uma‘u Crater. This Port Adventure also includes a visit to the Jagger Museum, plus samples of the Island’s fresh fruit and macadamia nuts.

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Those of you who want a taste of the Hawaiian lifestyle will absolutely love our Culinary Hawai‘i Home Tour. This one-of-a-kind adventure is a progressive island brunch, showcasing local ingredients, in the homes of three Big Island residents. You’ll savor the flavors of the Islands, like passion fruit, mango, coconut and Kona coffee, and find out what it’s like to live in paradise. During your insider look at islander living, your guides will share details about each home, local trivia and stories of life in paradise.

Up next, we’ll venture over to the island of Kaua‘i to see the adventures you can enjoy from Nawiliwili. Remember, when the ship’s in port, venture ashore!

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All Four Disney Cruise Ships Recognized by USA Today Readers

posted on May 4th, 2015 by Rebecca Peddie, Manager, Public Affairs


The Disney Cruise Line fleet was named among the top 10 “Best Cruise Ships for Families” in the USA Today 10 Best Reader’s Choice poll, with the Disney Dream taking the top honor. A panel of USA Today editors and industry experts selected the 20 top nominees, and families like you voted the top 10 ships from the list.

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It’s no secret that Disney Parks destinations cater to kids and kids at heart. But it’s the touches like rotational dining, roomy staterooms, family-friendly entertainment, half a deck dedicated to youth activities on each ship – the list could go on – that make sailing with Disney Cruise Line a memorable and hassle-free experience for all.

Why do you think Disney has the best ships for families?

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Tequila and Margarita Tasting on a Disney Cruise

posted on April 30th, 2015 by Salah Chetbi, Dining and Beverage Standards and Consistency Manager, Disney Cruise Line


Salt or sugar? Blended or on the rocks? Many of you have go-to answers to these questions when it comes to drinking margaritas. And if you don’t, our Tequila and Margarita seminar is the perfect opportunity to taste test your preference.

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First, you’ll discuss the history and production methods of tequila, sipping brands such as Patron and Casamigos. You’ll also hear about types of tequila, including blanco (white), reposado (rested) and añejo (aged), learning and sampling the differences between each. Next up, you’ll taste both a classic and a modern margarita, deciding for both whether you want it prepared on the rocks, frozen or straight up.

I hope you’re enjoying my series on beverage seminars and making note of which ones you want to join on your next Disney cruise. If you missed any of my posts, take a look back at them:

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Wildlife Wednesday: Celebrating World Veterinary Day at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts

posted on April 29th, 2015 by Scott Terrell, DVM, DACVP, Animal Operations Director, Disney’s Animal Programs


World Veterinary Day promotes animal health, animal welfare and public health globally. Since its initiation in 2000, this day has been recognized on the last Saturday of April and provides a great opportunity to raise awareness about the amazing work veterinarians around the world do to protect and care for animals and people. At Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, we share these same goals, as our veterinary teams care for our diverse animal population.

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This year, World Veterinary Day fell on April 25.

If you ask me, I believe we have the most amazing animal-care team on the planet, but I may be biased. The most incredible thing about our vets and the team as a whole is that we make the extraordinary seem routine every day. We take care of every animal – from turtles and tigers to red river hogs and birds.

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You can see our world-class vets in action at Rafiki’s Planet Watch at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. You can watch live animal medical procedures and talk to the vets and animal keepers after the live procedures as well. Most procedures are scheduled before noon, so be sure to take the Wildlife Express Train to Conservation Station for this unique experience.

Did you know…?

  • Our veterinary staff cares for animals in many locations including: Disney’s Animal Kingdom, The Seas with Nemo & Friends at Epcot, Tri-Circle D Ranch at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground, and Castaway Cay.
  • The state-of-the-art veterinary facilities at Disney’s Animal Kingdom include an X-ray room, ultrasound equipment, surgical suites and full-service laboratories. Veterinarians and veterinary technicians use these tools to focus on preventative health and creating new methods to diagnose and treat animals, ranging in size from a two-gram poison dart frog to a 13,000-pound African elephant.

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Finding Disney Junior Fun on a Disney Cruise

posted on April 29th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


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If you’ve cruised with us recently, you may have noticed a couple more friends on board. Two of your favorite Disney Junior stars – Sofia and Doc McStuffins – are now sailing the high seas with Jake and sparking extra fun for the whole family!

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You may spot them strolling the decks and delighting little cruisers with hugs, but did you know these friends also join our family dance parties from time to time? We have two opportunities for you to shimmy and shake together, Disney Junior style:

Wake Up with Disney Junior: A high-energy, early morning dance party that is the perfect way to start the day with your little ones.

Disney Junior Pirate and Princess Dance Party: A celebration for pirates and princesses with music and fun activities from Jake & the Neverland Pirates and Sofia the First.

The Disney Junior fun doesn’t stop there. In Disney’s Oceaneer Club, we offer both entertaining and educational activities for little ones throughout the cruise …

Mickey’s Puzzle Play Time: Mickey and his pals stop by the Oceaneer Club to play some of their favorite games and do other fun activities such as make puppets and learn dances with little cruisers and families.

What are some of your child’s favorite things to do on a Disney cruise?

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Castaway Cay Challenge Part of Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Open for Registration

posted on April 28th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Once again, runners in the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna have the exclusive opportunity to participate in the Disney Castaway Cay Challenge! Registration for these January 2016 events opened today, marking the second year that runners can extend their Marathon Weekend by setting sail aboard the Disney Dream and completing a 5K run through paradise on our private island, Castaway Cay.

Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5K Event on Disney Cruise Line Private Island

The Castaway Cay Challenge takes place on the January 11, 2016 Disney Dream sailing from Port Canaveral, Florida. Visit disneycruise.com to book your voyage, and then head to the registration page on runDisney.com to reserve your spot in the race. For a glimpse at some of the fun you can expect, take a look back at my post with photos of this year’s inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge.

Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5K Race on Disney Cruise Line Private Island

If you’re among the select group that has completed the Castaway Cay Challenge, what was your favorite part of the experience? The scenic course? The character photo opps in front of swaying palm trees? The unique medal? Tell us in the comments!

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Soak in the Great Outdoors of Skagway with Disney Cruise Line

posted on April 27th, 2015 by Arnaldo Zanonato, Port Adventures Manager


Last week, I shared with you some of our brand-new Port Adventures coming to Juneau during this summer’s Alaska sailings. Today, I’m excited to tell you about ways your family can experience Skagway’s great outdoors with Port Adventures new for this summer.

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Nature-lovers will find breathtaking views at every turn on the Skagway Adventure Hike, trekking through the alpine forest and snow-capped mountains of White Pass. In the Alpine Lake Canoe Adventure on Summit Lake, panoramic views of Alaska’s most enchanting scenery include towering mountains, lush green forests and crystal-clear water.

Klondike Campfire Breakfast

Cooked up exclusively for Disney cruisers is the mouthwatering Klondike Campfire Breakfast at Liarsville Gold Rush Trail Camp. This is a great way to start your day. Who wouldn’t want to kick off their fun with a meal of steak, eggs and sourdough blueberry pancakes? After savoring breakfast, you’ll pan for gold, with everyone guaranteed to find the precious metal in every pan.

Klondike Family Challenge

If your family is more on the competitive side, you’re going to love Skagway’s new Klondike Family Challenge, where you’ll pan for gold, interact with dogs training for sled dog races and tour a brewery, among other experiences. Each part of this Port Adventure includes some friendly competition with other families, like seeing who can pan the most gold or who can pan the fastest. No matter who wins, at the end of the day each family gets to leave their mark by etching their names onto a wooden plank to be hung on the wall at the Klondike Gold Fields.

These new experiences join a spectacular collection of Port Adventures for Alaska, from exploring glaciers and whale watching to a high-energy lumberjack show and exciting crab fishing tour. What’s on your family’s can’t-miss list?

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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on April 26th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we announced some fantastic new experiences coming to the Disney Dream cruise ship this fall, including interactive youth areas themed to Star Wars and Disney Infinity.

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In Disney’s Oceaneer Club, kids are in for an out-of-this-galaxy experience in a newly themed play, Star Wars: Millennium Falcon, inspired by the spacecraft from the legendary saga. We’ll also offer Star Wars-themed crafts, games and activities in this space.

Also in the Oceaneer Club, a high-tech interactive space based on the Disney Infinity video game will allow kids to experience a whole new way of playing together with virtual experiences and immersive activities. Customized, on-screen adventures will bring to life characters and stories from across The Walt Disney Company.

Jonathan has more details on both spaces and other enhancements coming to the Disney Dream in his original story.

Walt Disney Describes Disneyland Park

And as we continue to count down the weeks until the beginning of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration on May 22, Erin launched the first of her series of stories looking back at some of the innovations that the Happiest Place on Earth has seen throughout its first 60 years.

This week, we started with the biggest innovation of all – Disneyland itself – recalled in Walt Disney’s own words. Check Erin’s original story for more details.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week.

Five Reasons to Visit the Disneyland Resort this Spring – Spring is in full swing at the Disneyland Resort, and it’s brought unique experiences you will only find this time of year! Check out our top five reasons to visit right now.

VIDEO: Learn to Make the Manhattan from Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge at Disney California Adventure Park – Watch as our bartender creates a Manhattan cocktail (and one of those fabulous ice spheres) from Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge.

What’s Included on Your Vacation to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa – See three of the activities that make a vacation to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, an unforgettable experience for everyone. Plus, they are included in the price of your room!

PHOTOS: Dockside Margaritas Opens Today at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort – This past week, Dockside Margaritas opened at Downtown Disney! Click through for photos of the cool, laid-back new location.

Disney Days of Past: ‘Goof Troop’ Visits Walt Disney World Resort – Television became a little goofier this past week in 1992 when “Goof Troop” first aired on The Disney Channel. Goofy and Max joined Chip ‘n Dale (from their “Rescue Rangers” days) on stage in Mickey’s Starland as seen here in July 1992.

Show your #DisneySide at the Final Expedition Everest Challenge at Walt Disney World Resort – On Saturday, May 2 runDisney will host its final Expedition Everest Challenge. This exciting nighttime 5K through Disney’s Animal Kingdom includes obstacles throughout the course and is followed by a scavenger hunt making it the ultimate adventure.

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