You may recall the cute Hall family who won our Unfrozen Winner contest earlier this year. Check out their adorable snowman submission!
Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning sent the winners on a Disney Cruise and provided airfare for four. Rebecca and Bradley (Mom and Dad) took their two oldest children, Korbin and Brooke, on their Disney Cruise during mid-summer. This was Korbin and Brooke’s first cruise and Rebecca and Bradley had not been on a cruise in nearly 10 years.
“I can’t even begin to tell you the amount of fun we had and how truly wonderful the whole thing was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a vacation we could have never taken on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall family was nice enough to send us their itinerary and some pictures from their amazing trip. If you’re interested in taking a Disney Cruise, or just want to find out what it’s all about, keeping reading for the highlights from the Hall’s trip.
We sailed for 2 days (Saturday and Sunday) and then ported in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We reserved a Catamaran and went out with 4 other families for several hours. It was my kids’ first time snorkeling and they were in heaven. We spotted turtles and stingrays – it was probably the most fun experience of the whole cruise!
We went from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we got to snorkel even more, swam, and hung out on the beach. The water was really that turquoise blue that they show on TV – truly picture perfect.
We sailed all day Wednesday and then got off at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Exclusive Island. The water was incredibly blue and had amazing visibility below, so of course that meant more snorkeling! They had hidden Mickey Mouses you could find underwater, which made up for not having as many fish. They also include an 18 and older beach which we enjoyed while our children played basketball, pool, and shuffleboard. Castaway Cay had staff everywhere to keep an eye on the kids so we (Rebecca and Bradley) relaxed and drank a daiquiri. It was just like a floating Disneyland!
It gives me goosebumps thinking about everything on the boat – everything was all so fun and unforgettable! The cruise has a “Midship Detective Agency” where you select the mystery you want to solve and Disney gives you a card so you can keep track of all your clues. When you place the card up to a painting, it springs to life – it speaks to you, tells you about the mystery you are solving, and gives you hints and directions. One mystery lasted two hours because we were going all over the cruise ship.
They are always showing first-run movies out near the pool so we got to enjoy Big Friendly Giant, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jungle Book, and Finding Dory. We also got to experience the Aqua Duct, which is a huge slide that zooms you up and down and swings you out over the boat!
We went Goofy Golfing and the cruise also has games like basketball, fooseball, and a Tween Club called Edge with activities like scavenger hunts, get to you know you games, and more.
It’s so easy to see characters on the ship – you only have to wait a few minutes versus 30 or 40 at Disneyland. We got to see about two per day, and one day we got five in a row! They also have several versions of the characters, such as Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The stateroom was awesome! Ours included an ocean view room with a HUGE porthole and window seat. Our room was a really good size and all four of us were comfy and never felt squished.
You rotate through three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has neat flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the colors change on the ceiling throughout your meal and Royal Court was very elegant and made me think of Cinderella. The menu is very gourmet and they have an awesome variety. Korbin tried everything, including escargot at the Royal Court. (He said it tasted like dirt!)
Animators Palette is animation-themed and they give you markers on your table so you can sketch a figure. They offer a tutorial on how to draw a figure, then they take the drawings and at the end of your meal, they animate your drawings on these screens on the wall. You have no idea it’s coming! They put them to music and position them in Disney films. Our daughter is our artist so she did really well with hers and was elated – the rest of us weren’t quite as accomplished
“Our family can’t thank Service Experts enough for this amazing vacation,” Rebecca said after they returned home. “I get teary-eyed when I think about it all. Submitting our picture to a contest I never thought would go anywhere, finding out we were a finalist, the anxious voting stage, the big win, reading about and choosing which cruise, the excitement of going and finally experiencing an amazing vacation. It was such a wonderful time living it all. We are so grateful!”
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