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Dream Bahamas Cruise 2014 Archives

November 25, 2014

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise - Part 2

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Wednesday - Castaway Cay

We got up early enough so that we could have breakfast before meeting in Evolution at 8:15 for the 5K. The 5K process is much easier than the last time we did it. It's still free, but instead of signing up the morning of, you sign up in advance at Guest Services or the Port Adventures desk. They give you a ticket that you turn in at the meeting place in exchange for your bib and safety pins. The made the process a LOT faster - the 5K group was ready to leave the ship as soon as the cruise director announced that passengers could disembark.

As soon as we walked off the ship it started to rain! We just grabbed some towels and kept walking, and it stopped after less than 10 minutes. It was nice to have it overcast and a bit cooler - this is definitely the best weather I've had when I've done this race.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Stan, Pam, and Tom were again doing the 5K. Lee and Stan ran it, and Pam and I walked it together and had a good time, and Tom finished a few minutes after we did. We all got our "Winner" ribbons with the plastic Mickey head. Starting next year runDisney is doing a new "Castaway Cay Challenge" which will have a REAL medal. Runners who participate in one of the races during either Marathon weekend in January or Princess weekend in February and then take the four-night Disney cruise that starts the Monday after the race have the opportunity to sign up for the Castaway Cay Challenge where they will get that medal when they complete the Castaway Cay 5K. I hope that they will offer this after the Wine and Dine Half Marathon also, since we already plan to run that and then do the cruise next year. There were a lot of people on our cruise that had run the Wine and Dine Half, so I think there would be quite a bit of interest!

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After the race we walked out to Serenity Bay.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Molly had gone ahead while we were doing the race and saved us some primo spots - including two hammocks! I enjoyed one of those for a while.

They had to leave early since they were having brunch at Palo. Brunch is so popular and hard to reserve that they have started to offer it on Castaway Cay day also.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Lee and I had lunch on the island, and enjoyed a nap in the sun. It was a little breezy and the sun felt good.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We walked back to the ship around 2:00 and stopped for some photos with the holiday decorations on the dock.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After we boarded we ran into the others who were returning from brunch. They enjoyed it.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Lee and I had another Champagne seminar in the Pink that afternoon. This one was put on by the wine team, and led by the Head Sommelier from Remy. We had four champagnes, including two rose champagnes.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

There was also a bonus champagne - our favorite Moet Ice Imperial. I think the sommelier was a bit taken aback that Lee and I were already quite familiar with it. :-)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We were again leaving port after we finished, so we went up on deck to watch the sailaway. Not quite as pretty a sunset as the previous evening.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

In the lobby they were still working on the gingerbread house!

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

That night was Pirate Night and we dressed up a little bit. Arrr...

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

In Pink I had one of the Tuxedo strawberries with a glass of Ice Imperial. Yum.

We returned to our stateroom in time for the fireworks - we were on the starboard side, so we could see them from our verandah.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

That day's towel animal was a sea turtle.


Thursday - Day at Sea

I don't think I've mentioned the sea conditions for this cruise at all. It was very smooth sailing - I think the least motion that I've ever experienced. I felt it a little bit the evening we left Port Canaveral, but after that, I could hardly even tell we were moving.

The weather was good, too, at least after we got away from Port Canaveral. We had a fair amount of sun and it wasn't too warm.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Thursday was our day for Palo brunch, though it wasn't until 12:30. We still had breakfast in the morning. We started in Cove Cafe so Lee could get some "real" coffee, rather than the stuff they serve at the beverage stations and in the dining rooms. Cove Cafe had some holiday decorations, too.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

I didn't realize that there was a piece of Enchanted Art in Cove Cafe.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After breakfast at Cabanas Lee went to a presentation on the Dream and I did another "Midship Detective Agency" case. If you keep the same card you'll get different villains, though the cases themselves done change at all - just a couple of the clues are different. While doing that I checked on the gingerbread house again. You can see the figures of Mickey and Minnie inside.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

There were some holiday decorations in Palo, also. Our brunch was good, though it didn't take as long as it often does - we felt a little rushed. We've always had the first seating before, though. By the time we left very few of the tables were still occupied.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After brunch we went shopping. They had some nice "Merrytime Cruises" merchandise.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Lee found a Baymax shirt that he bought.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

That night we were in Animator's Palate - there was a pretty Christmas tree outside.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We saw the Turtle Talk with Crush show. Crush got to our area of the restaurant very late, and most of the kids had already left by then, so he didn't really spend any time interacting with anyone in particular. And truth be told, we weren't paying much attention to him because we were too busy chatting with our tablemates.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We got a nice photo of everyone, plus our server, Graziela.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After dinner we went back to our stateroom to pack. We had to clear "Davy Jones" off our bed so that we could do that, though. We were planning to carry our bags off ourselves, but still wanted to get most of the packing done before we went to Pink to finish our evening.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

There were a few more people who wandered in and out of Pink that night, but no one stayed long, though we heard several lament that they wish they'd found it sooner. We had a nice final evening with Don and Cinthya. We hope to see them next year when we do this same cruise again!

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

I wanted to check out the progress on the gingerbread house so we went to the lobby.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

It was about 10:20 and the "Character Farewell" was going on. We watched that for a while, and also saw the "Dickens Carolers" group. They only performed two songs, though - we were hoping for more.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

The characters came out onto the balcony for one final farewell.

Then it was back to our room for one final night in that oh-so-comfy Disney Cruise Line bed!

Friday - Disembarkation

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We were early dining, so our breakfast started at 6:45 - we set an alarm. We'd had good weather for the cruise, but it was another foggy, grey day in Port Canaveral.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Breakfast on the final day is always a a very quick process - they want us OUT of there. I think we walked off the ship about 7:45, after taking one final photo of the gingerbread house. Walking off the ship is always a letdown after everything else. But all good things must come to an end, right?

The line for Customs was longer than I've ever seen it but it moved steadily and we were on a bus to the airport by 8:20, and checked in for our flight by 9:15 - plenty of time before our 11:45 flight.

So now Part 3 of our adventure was about to begin: fly to San Diego, make a quick stop at the house to repack our bags, and then drive to Disneyland so that we can run the Inaugural Avengers Half Marathon on Sunday. We were looking forward to that!

A few thoughts on the cruise...

We loved doing the cruise after our half marathon! It was a great way to relax and reward ourselves after that. We are definitely looking forward to doing it again next year! We were already planning to do it with a group of friends, and while on this cruise Stan and Pam and Tom and Molly also booked it for next year!

i was glad to get a chance to see the holiday decorations on board the ship - that wasn't something I expected when we booked this cruise. I wish they had done a tree lighting ceremony every night - the lobby just isn't big enough to hold everyone who is interested in that. And it was difficult for those with early dinner seating to make it in time.

I really loved this itinerary: two days at Castaway Cay and a day at sea. I know it's very popular with guests, so I wish Disney would do it more often. Lee reminded me that when all four ships are in the area and visiting Castaway Cay once or twice a week, that the schedule just doesn't work out. Sigh.

We didn't see any of the shows this time - but we've seen them all before. We were glad of the opportunity to see Big Hero 6, since it had just opened the previous Friday. We wanted to see Maleficent, but the timing just never worked out for that one. That's what happened on our cruise two months ago, also.

Next time I'm booking my own transfers or doing something else different so that we don't get to the ship so late on embarkation day. When we're late like that it's a rush to try and eat and get settled in our stateroom before the lifeboat drill. Besides, I want to be able to take advantage of our Platinum status!

The food blogs are still coming - I will include our experiences at Walt Disney World, including the Food and Wine Festival, in addition to our meals on the cruise ship.



November 24, 2014

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise - Part 1

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Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

What to do after running a half marathon in the rain...How about a Disney cruise to the sunny and warm Bahamas???

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Our cruise didn't start out sunny and warm - it was raining in Port Canaveral for much of the afternoon, which is why the Cove Pool is totally empty in this photo. :-) It was still drizzling during the lifeboat drill (though fortunately we were under cover for that), and the Sailaway Party. The Sailaway Party was moved to the Atrium Lobby because of the rain.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We had a late bus from Walt Disney World, and didn't arrive at the port until almost 2:00. The "Merrytime" holiday cruises had just started, and this was the first one on the Dream, so the port terminal was decorated for the holidays.

When we booked this cruise we did it strictly because of the schedule, since it fell right after the Wine and Dine Half Marathon. When I looked at the itinerary I was really happy to find that it was an alternate itinerary, featuring two days at Castaway Cay and a day at sea. The second Castaway Cay day replaced the stop at Nassau. That was great for us - we don't get off the ship in Nassau.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Then just a few weeks before the cruise I found that Disney had moved the holiday season forward, and that our cruise would fall during the "Merrytime Cruise" season, so that we'd get to see all of the decorations and have the opportunity to participate in some of the other special events.

This was our first cruise as Platinum Castaway Club members, but due to our late arrival we really didn't get to take advantage of most of the perks, like early boarding. Oh well. Next time!

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

The Lobby Atrium was already decorated for the holidays with the big tree and lots of garlands. The crew was very busy, since it all had to be done between the time the previous guests disembarked, and when the new guests came on board - that's typically less than two hours!

Our first order of business was to sign up for any Tasting sessions we wanted to attend. The Navigator didn't do a very good job of describing what they were and when - we had to ask at Guest Services. The Stem-to-Stern session had already been booked by a private party, so that wasn't available at all. But there were two champagne tastings: Champagne, and Champagne Cocktails. We booked both of those. My very favorite, Chocolate and Liquor, conflicted with our Palo brunch on the sea day. I was very disappointed.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Since we were so late the staterooms were already available, so we made a quick stop to drop off our packs before heading off to lunch. This time our Castaway Club gift was already on the bed. (Last cruise I had to call three times before they delivered it to us.)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We had lunch in Cabanas - it was the usual buffet items, such as shrimp, fish, chicken, lamb, salad bar, various hot and cold side dishes, breads, and dessert. Nothing too exotic, but it tasted good.

We wandered around the ship looking at some of the new holiday decorations before the lifeboat drill.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Our suitcases both arrived before dinner, so we had a chance to unpack and change clothes before going down to Enchanted Garden for dinner. As usual, our dining rotation is Enchanted Garden, Royal Palace twice, and then Animator's Palate on the final night. It must be somehow noted on our record. :-) The weather improved as soon as we pulled out of port and there was a nice sunset as we were getting ready for dinner.

I'll have a food blog later...but I wanted to give a shout-out to our tablemates Russell and Annamarie - Russell is an AllEars fan, and he and Annamarie were on their first Disney cruise. But I don't think it will be their last. :-)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After dinner was the first of the main holiday activities: Mickey's Tree Lighting Magic.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We'd just barely finished dinner in time, so the Atrium was already crowded when we arrived. But at least we had a spot where we could see the staircase and the tree, so we could see most of it. I thought they might do it every night, but it was only the one time.

Later in the evening was Santa's Winter Wonderland Ball, but we missed that one. That was when Santa Claus arrived.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

The pastry chefs were busy building a gingerbread house in the Atrium, it'll be interesting to see how far they get with it before our cruise ends.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We headed to Pink, the champagne bar in The District. It had some holiday garland - pink, of course. :-)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

There were a few people in there when we arrived, but they headed out and for a while it was just the two of us and our bartender Don and server Cinthya.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Pink is a nice space, but it's not Ooh La La (on the Disney Fantasy), though Lee prefers Pink. We had a fun evening trying to convince people that were passing through that it was the Biker Bar, and that they should stay. :-)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

When I'd looked at the Navigator that day I was happy to see the the new movie Big Hero 6 would be showing while we were on board. The first showing was going to be in the Walt Disney Theater that night, and we decided to go. It started at 10:30 in the Walt Disney Theater. There were quite a few guests who had stayed up late to see it. We saw the 3D version, and really enjoyed it, as well as the short that preceded it: Feast. Jeanine already posted a review of the movie, so I'm not going to say much about it, except that we enjoyed it. But we were petty tired when it was over, and ready for bed.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

When we returned to our room we had the first towel animal...ssssss.


Tuesday - Castaway Cay

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

When we awoke around 7:30 we were already docked at Castaway Cay. As you can see it was a beautiful day!

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

After breakfast we walked off the ship. There are some fun holiday decorations on the pier. Some of them were just put into place that morning after we arrived.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Lee tried to hula along with Olaf. :-)

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

I liked how they kept the nautical theme going in the decorations.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Even the tram and tram station were decorated!

Several friends from Team AllEars are also on this cruise, and they were all doing the Castaway Cay 5K that morning. We saw some of the early finishers come in and saw our friend Stan finish the race - the others were walking and were still behind him. I headed back to the ship since I had a massage coming up, but Lee stayed on the island and went to Serenity Bay with Stan, Pam, Molly, and Tom. They had a good time.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

As i walked back to the ship I took a few photos - I was surprised that the Family Beach was still not crowded at all. But maybe because were were visiting Castaway Cay twice, most people didn't have the same sense of urgency to get out there early to get a good spot.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

A nice holiday farewell as you leave the island.

I enjoyed my massage, and had lunch at Cabanas. Then went to deck 5 to one of the Midship Detective Agency stations and solved The Case of the Stolen Artwork. This is a little easy for the adults, but you get your exercise going all over the ship if you use the stairs like I do. There's a second case also: The Case of the Stolen Puppies, and you choose which one you want when you start. On the Fantasy, in addition to these two cases, there's also a Muppets version. That one is also a lot of fun, and more challenging for the adults.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Lee was back on board when I returned to our stateroom, There was a knock on our door later - it was room service delivering our complimentary fruit plate. Another of the benefits of Platinum Status is a free "edible gift" - I'd received a phone call the night before, and we had a choice of a fruit plate, sparkling wine, or a box of chocolates. I'd chosen the fruit. It was a really nice assortment, with fresh berries, grapes, tangerines, and apple, and a banana. The berries were quite good.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Later in the afternoon Lee and I went to Pink for the first of the Seminars we had booked - Champagne Cocktails. Our bartender Don was leading the seminar, and we were delighted when he told us that we would be making the cocktails ourselves! There were 12 of us in the seminar, and three of us behind the bar at a time, each preparing four of the same kind of cocktail. Since there were four different cocktails, everyone who wanted to was able to participate. It was fun to go behind the bar and work with all of the shakers and bottles! We really enjoyed the experience, and Don was an excellent teacher. And it was fun to taste the different cocktails, though most of them we had already tried before.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

And we had to check out the progress on the gingerbread house in the lobby.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

We were juat leaving Castaway Cay when we returned to our stateroom. Even though we'd be back the next day, we couldn't stay docked there over night. There was a colorful sunset as we left.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

It was "optional dress-up" night, ad we looked pretty good, if I do say so myself. :-) We were in Royal Palace for dinner, and enjoyed our meal. After dinner we went to Pink again, but didn't stay really late, since we had to get up in time to run the Castaway Cay 5K the next morning.

Disney Dream Bahamas Cruise

Tonight's towel animal! This cabin steward made much more use of the bed throw than we'd seen in the past. We didn't see him very much, but he did a good job, and our stateroom was clean and neat.

Coming Up: Another day at Castaway Cay, including the Castaway Cay 5K.


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About Dream Bahamas Cruise 2014

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Salute to All Things Disney but Mostly Disneyland in the Dream Bahamas Cruise 2014 category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Dream Bahamas Cruise 2011 is the previous category.

Dream Christening Cruise 2011 is the next category.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.