You might recall the cute Hall family who were the winners of our Unfrozen Winter contest earlier this year. Check out their adorable snowman submission!
A1 Chesney Service Experts sent the Halls on a Disney Cruise and paid for airfare for four. Bradley and Rebecca took their two oldest kids, Korbin and Brooke, on their Disney Cruise earlier this summer. Korbin and Brooke had never been on a cruise before and Rebecca and Bradley hadn’t been in about 10 years.
“I can’t even begin to explain the amount of fun we had and how truly unbelievable the whole experience was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a getaway we could have never made happen on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall family was kind enough to give us their itinerary and some pictures from their incredible trip. If you’re thinking about going on a Disney Cruise, or just want to find out what it’s all about, keeping reading for the highlights from the Hall’s vacation.
We were on the water for a couple days (Saturday and Sunday) and then docked in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We had reservations for a Catamaran and went out with four different families all day. It was Korbin and Brooke’s first time snorkeling and they loved it. We saw turtles and stingrays – it was probably the most fun experience of the whole trip!
We sailed from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we got to do more snorkeling, got to swim, and bummed around on the beach. The water was actually that turquoise blue you always see in pictures – truly perfect.
We traveled all day Wednesday and then ported at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Cruise Line Guest-Only Island. The water was very blue and had clear visibility underneath, so of course that meant more snorkeling! They had hidden Mickey Mouses you could find underwater, which helped make up for the fact there weren’t as many fish. They also had an 18 and older beach which we took advantage of while the kids played basketball, pool, and shuffleboard. Castaway Cay had employees everywhere to watch the kids so we (Mom and Dad) laid out and enjoyed a daiquiri. It was just like a floating Disneyland!
It gives me goosebumps reminiscing about everything on the cruise ship – it was all so fun and amazing! They have a “Midship Detective Agency” where you pick the mystery you want to solve and Disney gives you a card so you can write down all your clues. When you put the card up to a painting, the painting springs to life – it speaks to the group, tells you about the mystery you are trying to solve, and gives you clues and directions. One mystery lasted two hours because we were running all over the cruise ship.
They are continually playing first-run movies out near the pool so we got to enjoy Finding Dory, Big Friendly Giant, Alice Through the Looking Glass, and Jungle Book. We also got to ride the Aqua Duct, which is a large slide that zooms you up and down and swings you out above the boat!
The whole group went Goofy Golfing and the cruise also has games like foosball, basketball, and a Tween Club called Edge with events like scavenger hunts and more.
It’s so easy to find characters on the ship – you only have to wait a few minutes versus a half-hour or more at Disneyland. We got to see about two a day, and one day we got five in a row! They also have multiple versions of the characters, including Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The stateroom was amazing! Ours included an ocean view room with a large porthole and window seat. The stateroom was a perfect size and all four of us were comfortable and never felt smothered.
You rotate through three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has cool flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the colors change on the ceiling throughout your meal and Royal Court was extremely elegant and reminded me of Cinderella. The food is very gourmet and they have a good selection. My oldest 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 illustrate a figure. They provide a tutorial on how to draw a figure, then they pick up the drawings and at the end of your meal, they animate your drawings on big screens. You have no warning! They choreograph them to music and place them in Disney films. Brooke is our artist so she did really well with hers and was thrilled – the rest of us weren’t quite as proud
“We cannot thank Service Experts enough for this unbelievable opportunity,” Rebecca wrote after they returned home. “I get teary-eyed when I think about the experience as a whole. Submitting our picture to a contest I never thought would go anywhere, hearing we were a finalist, the stressful voting stage, the big announcement, reading about and picking which cruise, the anticipation of going and finally experiencing an amazing trip. It was such an amazing time living it all. Thank you, thank you!”
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