Top 10 Favorite Experiences On My Disney Cruise

Top 10 Favorite Experiences On My Disney Cruise

Cruising On The Disney Dream

If the Disney Cruise Line would hire me as a sales rep right now, I would be their top producing sales person. I just returned from my first Disney Cruise and I can’t even begin to explain how much I absolutely loved the experience! There are so many activities and experiences on the Disney Dream to choose from!

Limiting this list to 10 favorite experiences was difficult, Ironically, prior to the Disney Cruise, there was a part of me that was a bit nervous about spending five days on the cruise. I thought I would get bored with just sitting around lounging by the pool all day. As it turns out, I didn’t even begin to scratch the surface on the activities available on the Disney Dream.

My time on the cruise was balanced somewhere between staying active and simply trying to relax and soak up all the sunshine, Disney magic and awesomeness that surrounded me.

Here’s my Top 10 Favorite Experiences On My Disney Cruise… (in somewhat of an order, but not really. lol)

The Best Activities On The Disney Dream

10) Sailing Away Party

A couple of hours after boarding the Disney Dream the first major event took place – the Sailing Away Party! And what an amazing way to begin the cruise it was!!

It was such a thrill knowing that my first Disney Cruise had officially started! One of the pools magically disappeared from the deck and turned into one big dance floor. There was a show that introduced several of the crew members, the music was upbeat, families were dancing together and the overall excitement of sailing away was such a thrill.

I literally got chills as I heard the ship’s horn blow and in true Disney Magic form, it played a few bars of familiar Disney tunes. The sailing away party was one of my favorite parts of the cruise simply because it started out such an amazing cruise!

If you’re sailing on the Disney Dream, you definitely do not want to miss this! This is the moment you realize you are about to embark on the Disney Dream!!

Sailing Away Party On The Disney Dream
Disney Dream leaving the dock at Cape Canaveral

9) The Subtle Disney Touches

I loved just walking around and exploring the Disney Dream. The ship is beautiful!!

If you know me at all, you know I love all things Disney, especially the theming and the subtle ways Disney incorporates the characters, the Pixie Dust and the Disney brand.

In my opinion, the Disney Cruise Line takes the theming and the way it incorporates the characters up a notch. It’s not just the architectural theming, but the overall experience of everything around you.

One of the fun touches for me: I had just bought some popcorn before watching “Mary Poppins Returns” and as I was talking with the crew member, I notice my popcorn bucket move from my left and then it reappeared on my right.

When I turned around to see what just happened, it was Peter Pan having some fun messing with me! I know it may not seem like much, but that kind of character interaction happened throughout the cruise!

The architectural and design of the ship, the decor, the pixie dust, the Hidden Mickey’s…. it all just blew me away!

Row D, Seat 23 – D23. The cloth was tiny Mickey’s on the theater seats
Deck 3 of the Disney Dream – Such a BEAUTIFUL Lobby!!
The stairways on the Disney Dream all had beautiful Disney Themed Art – very classy!!
Disney Characters are plentiful on Disney Cruises

8) Pirates Night & Fireworks

When returning from our day at Castaway Cay, I came back to find Pirate Bandanas in my room. Why? Because it was Pirates Night on the cruise!

Families dressed up in such fun ways! Some totally matching, some in full out costumes. This kind of reminded me of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in a sense because some families went all out while others just observed.

There was a deck show, dancing and the Pirates Night concluded with a fireworks and dessert party! …which brings me to the food!!

Food On The Disney Dream

7) The Delicious Food & Dining Experiences

The food is outstanding on the Disney Dream!!

Each night I rotated to one of the nice sit down restaurants for a unique and fun experience. The theming of the restaurants on the Disney Dream was so fun and whimsical and the quality of the food was impressive!

Let’s just say I had my fair share of steak, ribeye, prime rib and pork loin during the week! Because I eat a keto diet, my meals were strictly keto (low carb).

However, I did allow myself a “cheat week” and took advantage of various desserts, ice cream, popcorn, snacks, chocolates, fruits and salads that I would not typically consume.

The ribeye and ribs I ate (fresh off the grill) at Castaway Cay were some of the best I have ever eaten. …and trust me, I know my steak and ribs! And I may, or may not have, gone to lunch twice while at Castaway Cay…..

Each morning I had breakfast at a different location (other than going to Cabanas Twice).

For lunch I typically ate at Cabanas (the buffet one floor up from me that had everything from seafood, to steaks, to salads, to fruits and veggies). They also had a ton of desserts, though I never got any for lunch).

Dinner was rotated amongst three restaurants on the Disney Dream so I made the scheduled rotation, other than eating elsewhere on the second night I was scheduled for The Royal Palace.

And Room Service…. it was too convenient not to take advantage of!

Other than the popcorn I had at the movies, all food was included.

This Steak was DELICIOUS!!!
The Prime Rib was INCREDIBLE!
My first meal on board was from the buffet at Cabanas – the roasted turkey was perfect! I stayed Keto for my meals (but did eat some desserts, snacks and other goodies outside of meal time.)
Seriously the best ribs (right off the grill!) I’ve ever had! This is the picnic at Castaway Cay.
This is a ribeye fresh off the grill at Castaway Cay. Yes, I had lunch twice on this day ashore!
Check out the details in the silverware at Animators Palate. (Disney Dream)
Table Setting at Animators Palate (Disney Dream)

Fancy Napkins at each of the nightly restaurants.
On the second night, my lemon and water were waiting for me when I arrived! That’s SERVICE!

For The Love Of Disney World

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6) Beauty & The Beast

I started to lump this into the category of “Entertainment & Shows” but this one particular show stood out amongst the rest.

Beauty and the Beast is a live musical that truly was broadway quality. It’s Disney, and Disney knows how to do entertainment! The stage show used props and technology in a way I had never seen before and kept me fully engaged. The music was breathtaking. This show was simply amazing!!

I may have shed a tear or two….

There was entertainment galore on this ship. While other cruise ships have large areas for casinos and more staterooms, Disney seemed to put their energy toward creating world class entertainment options.

I saw two magic shows, 3 musicals, karaoke, 2 currently running movies, a comedian (though I don’t think it was a comedy show), a few dance parties, a couple of game show type entertainment offerings and a fireworks show.

I was well entertained – and missed several other options for lack of time! There’s seriously so many entertainment options on a Disney Cruise.

Beauty & The Beast stage show on Disney Dream

5) Sitting On The Verandah of my Stateroom

When I booked my Disney Cruise, I was determined to get a room with a balcony. Each night I slept with the door opened so I could hear the waves and the sound of water against the ship – it’s one of my favorite sounds. (Yes, I have a favorite sound, don’t you?)

It was completely relaxing sitting out on the balcony and simply being present in the moment. I’d enjoy some room service, journal some, just sit and watch the waves go by. My time on the verandah was completely amazing and peaceful….even during the one storm we went through.

Personally, I love a good thunder and lightning storm, and I got to experience one up close and personal in the middle of the ocean! The captain warned us that we were going to go through a storm and to get off of the top deck, so I went to my private balcony and enjoyed it!

Enjoy a little video from the storm…

4) VIP Spa Experience

On the first day of the cruise as I was out exploring ran across the Senses Spa. It was during their open house, so they were giving tours and doing a giveaway. They offer some first day upgrades for booking on the first day.

Before the cruise I had decided to get a massage, so I ended up with 30 extra minutes and added on a facial. I’ve never had a professional facial before, and wanted the experience.

They were also offering unlimited use of the Spa and a special area that included a steam room, rain forest showers, a private hot tub and hot stone chairs – all for $99. So I signed up and took advantage of this area every single day!

The steam room, combined with the showers (they had different shower settings that simulated different rain forest and rain experiences from places around the world) left me feeling completely at ease. It may be the best $99 I’ve ever spent!

The two hour massage and facial basically made me feel like a noodle!

The waiting area for The Senses Spa on board the Disney Dream.

Disney Cruise Line’s Private Island – Castaway Cay

3) Castaway Cay – Disney’s Private Island

I could not snap a picture that displayed how beautiful this island is. It’s Disney and everything at Castaway Cay is pristine, themed and serves a purpose.

The water is the prettiest turquoise you can imagine! It is super clear and the beaches are beautiful white sand. I was at the Adults only beach and it didn’t feel crowded or even busy.

As mentioned above, the food was delicious! There are three main picnic areas and several bar locations. Live entertainment included cover songs of some of my favorite beach music.

I’d seriously be happy to take a Disney Cruise and just go to Castaway Cay for a week!

Other than doing the Castaway Cay 5k, I pretty much sat at the beach and the bar area (after getting too much sun) just listening to the live music and enjoying the gorgeous scenery.

The view first walking onto Castaway Cay
Nautical Disney Details at Castaway Cay
The entire island of Castaway Cay was themed perfectly!
Such a beautiful backdrop! I had to take a selfie at Castaway Cay!

2) The Service on The Disney Dream

I’ll be the first to admit it, I like to experience the finer things in life. I’ve been blessed enough to stay at the Ritz Carlton’s, Waldorf Astoria’s and Four Seasons of the world. And now I’m adding The Disney Dream to that list.

The service was superb!

Even before they announced my name boarding the ship, the pre-cruise experience was incredible. Boarding the ship was a breeze and not long after entering my stateroom, there was a knock on the door.

It was my stateroom host – he knew my name, some things about me and welcomed me and shared details of the upcoming Sailing Away Party, details of dinner that night and even some tips for navigating the ship.

When Rajan would see me throughout the trip, he’d always ask about my experiences and adventures, always remembering what I had done and what I had scheduled. He made towel art, left me chocolates on my pillow at the turn down service and cleaned my room twice daily.

Every single crew member was helpful, knowledgeable, friendly, inquisitive and made an effort to ensure I was having the trip of a lifetime.

On a Disney Cruise, your server at dinner travels with you as you dine in the various restaurants. After asking for extra lemon and extra ice on the first night, each consecutive night lemon and extra ice was waiting for me when I was seated. It’s the little things!

The service in the Spa blew my mind. Even room service found a way to make that experience incredible.

To say the least, they spoiled me silly on the Disney Dream

1 ) Castaway Cay 5k

I went on a Disney Cruise and I came back with a souvenir – a medal from my first 5k!

The 5k gave me the opportunity to get my steps in, explore Castaway Cay, meet some great people and experience beautiful tropical day.

While many others ran it, I walked it. I typically walk about 5 miles each day, so the 3.1 miles was not a challenge, but it was just cool to do something I’ve wanted to do for years.

It was just awesome to see families out running and walking it together, people of all shapes and sizes and, of course, people out doing the 5k in Mickey ears!

My first 5k medal from the Castaway Cay 5k
At the finish line of the Castaway Cay 5k
It wasn’t fast, but I finished!

Activities On A Disney Cruise

So I went on the cruise wondering if I would get a little bored but quickly found out that there were more activities and options than I could possible do.

The entire Disney Cruise was amazing!! It will not be my last Disney Cruise and next time, I’m booking a longer cruise for sure. I’m ready to add to my list of favorite experiences onboard a Disney Cruise.

Until next time, Bon Voyage!

By | 2019-01-30T11:09:52-04:00 January 28th, 2019|Disney, Travel|

About the Author:

Bonnie is a happy-go-lucky guy who enjoys Travel, Disney, Business and a really good ribeye! His commitment to living to his full potential, and encouraging others to do the same, is the heart behind his blog, Walking Into Greatness.


  1. January January 28, 2019 at 8:48 am - Reply

    I love this blog Bonnie. Thank you for sharing your top 10. Sam, the kids, and I are eager to go on our 1st Disney cruise. Thank you for sharing your experiences. Love and miss you!

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 28, 2019 at 9:58 am - Reply

      Thank you! You guys will enjoy it so much! There’s SO MUCH for all of you to see, do and experience!! ..and get your brother to go with you (he can save you a LOT).

  2. Michele Deans January 28, 2019 at 9:19 am - Reply

    Sounds like perfection.

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 28, 2019 at 9:59 am - Reply

      Thanks for reading Michele! …and yes, it pretty much was perfection!

  3. Angela L. January 28, 2019 at 9:49 am - Reply

    So enjoyed your review of The Disney Dream! I’ve never been on a cruise and would love for my first to be a Disney cruise. You gave lots of good information and I look forward to booking my trip in the future. Perhaps I’ll get in shape and be able to do a 5k myself. That’s my goal anyway You inspire me…..

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 28, 2019 at 10:01 am - Reply

      It was my first cruise too, and I can’t even imagine it being any better…the only way it would have been better was if it had been longer. lol!

      And I’m telling you, Castaway Cay will make that 5k seem like nothing – it’s so beautiful there!! You can do it!!

      Thanks for reading and for commenting 🙂

  4. Donna M January 28, 2019 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    I am so glad you had an amazing experience Bonnie! The pictures were great and Congratulations on the 5K!

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 28, 2019 at 9:04 pm - Reply

      Thank you! So glad you enjoyed them. Thanks for stopping by my blog 🙂

  5. Kathryn January 28, 2019 at 6:26 pm - Reply

    Talking about great service. I absolutely fell in love with a warm bread pudding from the Royal Palace our first night on our cruise. When I did not see a dessert our last night that I liked, our server asked if there was something I would like. I told him I would love that dessert from the first night. He went and got one for me from the Royal Palace! I also enjoyed the animation classes, and learning about the history of the cruise line. With three more ships beong built I am excited about future cruises!

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 28, 2019 at 9:05 pm - Reply

      Isn’t that such amazing service!?! I was seriously blown away by the service I received. …and their desserts looked so amazing!

  6. Jessie Flanary January 28, 2019 at 11:54 pm - Reply

    This is Awesome Bonnie thank you for sharing! My family and I are going on our first Cruise sailing on the Disney Fantasy in Sept!!! We are beyond excited!! Plus 5 days at the parks before….. maybe we will see you one day! 😉 I am excited for you that you did the 5k too, we love the 5k fun runs…. cause who doesn’t love a metal, but we by no means run and it is always a family outing.

    • Bonnie Cribbs January 29, 2019 at 8:12 am - Reply

      How fun!!! I know you all are super excited! That’s a GREAT Disney Vacation right there. You’re going to be amazed at how much stuff there is to do on the cruise! Hope to see you!

  7. […] Here’s a list of my Top 10 Favorite Experience On The Disney Dream […]

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