Guest Post by Barbara Lane
What could be better than a Magical Vacation at the Walt Disney World Resort? Combining a visit with a Disney Cruise – Disney Land and Sea Vacation! It’s the perfect way to extend the Magic of a Disney Vacation while having a chance to relax on the high seas! I always recommend the Land portion of the trip followed by the Sea Portion!
Hello Walt Disney World!
The Walt Disney World Resort has options for every budget! There are over 30 different Resorts to choose from, Value Resorts, Moderate Resorts, Deluxe Resorts and Deluxe Villas. Every Resort includes awesome pool(s), dining option(s) and complimentary transportation to the Theme Parks and Disney Springs.
Port Canaveral is located 60 miles east of the Walt Disney World Resort. Disney Cruise Line offers 3,4,5,7 and 11 Night Cruises from Port Canaveral! Guests can check out of their Walt Disney World Resort on the last day and hop on Disney Cruise Line motor coach transfer ($35 per person, one way) to Port Canaveral to embark on a Disney Cruise Ship.
During my recent visit to the Walt Disney World Resort, I had the opportunity to participate in a Travel Agent Resort Tour and a tour of the Disney Dream Cruise Ship!
Our Resort Tour started out at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, a vibrant Value Resort featuring Family Suites which will sleep 6 guests! There are 3 fabulously themed Family Suite sections, Finding Nemo, The Lion King and Cars! The Family Suites have 1 bedroom, 2 bathrooms, a separate living area (with a pull-out sofa bed), dining area (with a table-top style pull down bed) and small kitchenette which includes a microwave, sink, small refrigerator and coffee maker. There are also Little Mermaid themed Standard Rooms which will sleep 4 guests.\
The Landscape of Flavors offers Quick Service options for every meal and is open from 6:00 AM-12:00 AM. And the Finding Nemo inspired Big Blue Pool at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is the largest pool of all the Walt Disney World Resorts.
Guests can catch the Disney Buses to the theme parks and Disney Springs at the Animation Hall. A new gondola lift system, the Disney Skyliner is scheduled to open late in 2019 and will transport guests to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Art of Animation!
Our tour continued as we walked across the bridge over Hourglass Lake to Disney’s Pop Century Resort, an awesome Value Resort which been completely renovated! The guest rooms have a fresh, clean look with new decor, white bedding and hardwood like flooring. The higher queen size bed allows for luggage storage and the second queen size bed is a table-top pull down.
Pop Century Resort
Disney’s Pop Century Resort is has 5 separate themed sections – 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s! I love the oversized iconic sculptures and characters throughout Disney’s Pop Century Resort.
Everything POP Shopping and Dining is located in the Classic Hall as well as the Bus Transportation to the theme parks and Disney Springs. Everything POP offers Quick Service options for every meal and is open from 6:00 AM-12:00 AM.
Disney’s Pop Century Resort guests will also be able to ride the new Disney Skyliner gondola lift to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios when it opens in later 2019.
Port Orleans French Quarter
The next stop on our tour was Disney’s Port Orleans Resort-French Quarter. This is my favorite Moderate Resort, it is the smallest Resort and feels very relaxed and comfortable. Disney’s Port Orleans Resort-French Quarter is located on the Sassagoula River and is a short walk along the river to her sister Resort, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort-Riverside.
The guest rooms have all been refurbished with new higher beds to accommodate luggage storage, fresh new white bedding and hardwood look flooring.
The Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory offer Quick Service meals throughout the day, open from 6:00 AM-12:00 AM. Guests looking for a New Orleans Table Service dinner can stroll along the river to the Riverside Resort and check out Boatwright’s Dining Hall. Another great option for shopping and dining is the riding the Water Taxi to Disney Springs.
I love the New Orleans architecture and Mardi Gras themed pool and Disney’s Port Orleans Resort-French Quarter is the only place to get Mickey-shaped Beignets!
Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club
The last Resort on our tour was Disney’s Yacht Club Resort. A beautiful New England styled Deluxe Resort located in the Epcot Resort area. Disney’s Yacht Club Resort shares many amenities with her sister Resort, Disney’s Beach Club Resort.
The International Gateway Entrance at Epcot is within walking distance or a quick ride on the Friendship Boat. Guests can also take the Friendship Boats to Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the BoardWalk.
The Disney’s Yacht Club and Beach Club Resorts share a 3-acre mini-waterpark, Stormalong Bay. Water slides, whirlpool spas and a lazy river are part of the reason Stormalong Bay is the most popular pool at the Walt Disney World Resort!
The beautiful guest rooms at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort are spacious and have been refurbished with the new higher beds and the hardwood look flooring. I love the balconies (or patios on the ground floor) especially rooms with a view of Crescent Lake across to the BoardWalk.
There are quite a few dining options between the two sister Resorts including the Yachtsman Steakhouse! You will want to make reservations as soon as they are available! (180 days in advance) Beaches & Cream Soda Shop is another awesome option for lunch, dinner or a old-fashioned ice cream sundae!
Disney’s personal terminal at Port Canaveral
The following day we drove out to Port Canaveral to tour the Disney Dream while she as in port! The Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal is beautiful and the passenger check-in process was very efficient. We had a very tight schedule to be able to tour as many areas of the Disney Dream before she set sail for a 3-Night Cruise to the Bahamas.
The Disney Dream has 1,250 Staterooms, 901 Staterooms have a Verandah, 199 Staterooms have Oceanview Portholes and 150 Inside Staterooms have the Magical Porthole.
We were able to tour several categories of Staterooms including an Inside Stateroom and a Deluxe Inside Stateroom which both have the Magical Portholes – a real-time view outside the ship! It was awesome to see Mickey swim by and wave while we were there!
We also toured the Deluxe and Deluxe Family Oceanview Staterooms both with beautiful large portholes. There are also Deluxe Oceanview Staterooms, Deluxe Oceanview Family Staterooms with a Verandah. The Verandah has a clear railing is a wonderful extension of the Stateroom. I loved the Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with a Verandah when I cruised on the Disney Magic!
Most Staterooms on the ship have a split bathroom – one bathroom has a tub with a shower and a sink and the second bathroom has a toilet and a second sink. This is a great way for more than 1 person to get ready for the day at the same time.
When you cruise with Disney Cruise Lines you will experience rotational dining, all guests get to enjoy each of the 3 themed dining venues while on board. The Disney Dream Dining Rooms include Animator’s Palate, Enchanted Garden and Royal Palace, all have such unique theming. The best part is that your waitstaff rotate with you each night.
The Disney Dream also has 2 exclusive speciality Restaurants, Palo with exquisite Italian cuisine and French inspired cuisine at Remy. Both speciality restaurants require advance reservations and book up quickly. Either one is a great place to celebrate a special occasion!
We were able to tour all the Youth Clubs onboard including, Disney’s Oceaneer Club, Edge, Vibe and “it’s a small world” Nursery. Parents can tour the Youth Clubs and register their kids as soon as they board the ship!
The Senses Spa and Rainforest are beautiful and are the perfect place to relax and be pampered during a Disney Cruise Vacation!
Disney Cruises have Broadway-caliber stage shows, the Disney Dream is featuring Beauty and the Beast, Golden Mickey’s and Disney’s Believe in the stunning Walt Disney Theater!
We also stopped by the Buena Vista Theater where guests can see first run Disney movies.
Our tour ended at Cabana’s where we were invited to have a buffet lunch! Cabanas has over 10 different food stations with so many delicious options!
It was sad to have to disembark at the end of the tour, however, I’m excited to plan another Land and Sea Disney Vacation!
Disney Dream in port!