As your kids get older—grow into teenagers—life takes on a new speed. Admittedly, a speed that I have a hard time keeping pace with (and my husband refers to me as the Hurricane).
It seems as though we are literally going from 6 a.m. until it’s dark, running, driving, studying, eating, snapping, Instagramming, texting, and working. Everyone finds their own personality, their own place, and as a result, their own schedule. The sad part is they don’t always sync up, and family time is the first thing to suffer. Grades, community service, time with friends, projects, larger family commitments all start to take precedence.
We were able to sneak in a four night vacay as a family this past spring break, and I have to say…it was like heaven or an icing-filled doughnut.
I work a lot—including when we travel—so when the hubby suggested we all unplug, even I stuck my nose up in the air. I have to say: it ended up being awesome.
We took a four night cruise on the Disney Dream. A million people (okay, close to fifty) asked me where we were going, and my reply was: Who cares! Somewhere with sand and palm trees. And that was the honest to God truth!
We did go to Nassau, Bahamas and Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay—which is perfect like no other.
As longtime believer in Happily-Ever-After, Disney holds a certain appeal to me. It’s hard not to get lost in the magic and love of everything Disney does. That being said, I was on the receiving end of several raised eyebrows when I mentioned taking TWO teenage boys on the Dream.
I’m hear to tell you: They LOVED it. They may put it a little differently. Something like, it was AWESOME or the GOAT, but no matter how you call it…they LOVED it!
I’ve had several readers ask for my opinion on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter so here you go…the down and dirty review:
The POOL Deck was fun, spacious, and we actually ALWAYS found chair. Disney movies play around the main pool area, and it was hard not to smile when Toy Story came on. There are plenty of waiters around and bars to grab a drink of the day for adults and drink stations (included in cruise fare) are conveniently located around the pool. The AQUADUCK is sensational according to my husband and the boys—I was the resident photographer when it came to this. 🙂
The SPORTS Deck was all that and a bag of chips (my kids would not be happy with this expression but it was). The basketball court was open all day and into the wee hours (well lit), and for the most part, that is where I found my oldest.
VIBE, teens club, held enough attraction to garner the teens there until 2 a.m. and they went…LITERALLY! As an added bonus, Disney offers a special app to communicate on board, and I know we unplugged, but this helped the kids connect with other kids and meet up around the ship. I heard tales of karaoke, NBA 2k, and saw the final production of Zombie, a movie made onboard.
The FOOD was really great! We ate breakfast in the dining room, and it was very civilized and delicious. Lunch options are plentiful, as are snacks. As an added bonus, fruit, veggies and several other healthy options are always around. Dinner was delish. Disney offers rotational dining, and each night we visited a different dining room. We loved them all, but Animator’s Palate was our personal favorite. Complete with animated shorts and a funky decor, our last night onboard was super special there.
There is a fabulous adults section of the boat complete with PINK Champagne Bar. I have to say this was my secret pre-dinner hiding spot on the ship.
As for me, the TRACK was fabulous. I’m training for a half-marathon, and I was hesitant about my runs BUT I had some of my best ones on the track. PLUS, plus, plus, I ran the Castaway Cay 5K! Although a little hot, I adored this 5K run around the private island. We were the first to get off the ship, and we were able to see the whole island before anyone else.
CASTAWAY CAY was definitely the highlight of the trip! Gorgeous, serene, blue-blue-blue water, fantastic island fare, FRUIT smoothies, slides, tubes, snorkeling, boats, basketball, and bike rentals were all part of our experience. My hubby and youngest took a bike tour of the island, and they raved about the lookout. As for me, I settled in an inner tube in the ocean after my 5k.
Sun-kissed, well-fed, and reenergized for life, we landed back home, and I said: You know, I kinda loved unplugging. We talked for TWO hours every night at dinner!
And my kids both said: Yeah! We did. We were late every night to meet up with the others…
^^THIS made it all worth it!
So would I recommend a Disney Cruise for teens?