Swimming, poolside movies, beach walks, basketball, baseball, bike rides. These are the things we typically do on a summer vacation, so we (okay, maybe mostly me) were intrigued by the idea of a June cruise to Canada. It would be less swimming but more exploring, and the setup reminded me of a Mediterranean sailing my family went on a few years back -- which is still ranked a family favorite, despite its scant beach time.
While the culturally different Canadian itinerary and shorter cruise length bared little resemblance to a Mediterranean or Caribbean cruise, it did offer opportunities to explore Atlantic Canada's provinces (exciting for me and my geography-loving older son), have a relaxing family vacation where we didn't have to cook (a big deal for my husband and me) and try a different yummy dessert every night (all the enticement my younger son needed).
Our vessel for this voyage was Disney's first-ever cruise ship, 83,000-ton, 1,754-passenger Disney Magic, which has become the line's go-to ship for traversing new seas and new ports. Past passengers of Disney's Mediterranean cruises will notice that the destinations visited are not incorporated into everything from dining room menus to kids programs, as they were in Europe; however, the Canadian sailings offer a few specially designed shore excursions, Disney Canada merchandise in shipboard stores, and some fun character wardrobe additions, including Statue of Liberty Minnie, fisherman Mickey and Goofy decked out in plaid.
During our sailing -- Magic's first Canada/New England Coast Cruise from New York -- the ship added Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Saint John, New Brunswick, to the list of the more than 40 ports it has ever visited. We met fellow passengers from around the U.S., many who had sailed Disney before. Here are some postcards from our adventures on this five-night family cruise to Canada.
--by Christine Koubek, Cruise Critic Contributor