This was the first cruise I had ever went on with my husband - we were both in our mid/late twenties at the time. I had been on nearly a dozen cruises with other cruise lines with my parents growing up - Holland America, Royal Caribbean, and Princess - while my husband had been on only three cruises that were all with Disney.
At first, I was very hesitant about choosing a cruise with Disney - my husband had last been on a Disney cruise when he was still young enough to attend the teen programs on board the ship - and I figured that it would only be fun for kids/families. However, there was a special deal going on last year that allowed us to take this cruise for the same price as the lines that I was used to, so I agreed to take the plunge.
Overall the cruise was absolutely amazing!
Dining - Since we were traveling as a party of two, my husband said that we would be paired up with others. We were both a little nervous - how would we get along with complete strangers? Well, Disney was incredible at pairing us up with the perfect couples! Both couples were just about the same age as us and had so much in common! We were frequently one of the last tables to leave in the evenings. Since one of the couples were newlyweds, they only attended the dinner occasionally. When they did not make it, we often had the luck to have some of the young performers eat with us instead. One of the performers had his fiance visiting, who was working at the Disneyland in Hong Kong. Getting these opportunities to eat with such interesting individuals was a major highlight of the trip.
Cabanas - I liked the look of the buffet, but typically perferred to eat in the main dining rooms or at the outdoor snack shops on the main deck. The desert portions were extremely small (most were one or two bites in size) and were not nearly as good as the desert options at dinner. The coffee was a major highlight of Cabanas. By far the best coffee I have ever had anywhere!
Entertainment - We loved the Disney performances; they went above and beyond the Broadway performances that I am used to going to see, albeit shorter (only around 45 min. long). It's a shame that the performances don't change or rotate between ships frequently though -- I'm not sure how much fun it will be to repeat watch on our next trip.
Movies - Iron Man 2 premiered on our ship, which was a huge deal! We also enjoyed the wide range of movies nearly constantly ongoing on board the ship in the spectacular theatres. I tend to be a morning person, while my husband likes to sleep in, so I would often take in an early morning movie while waiting for him to get up. I was particularly amazed at how many 3D options were available.
Adult Only Top Deck Areas - This is something that is typically highlighted as an option on every cruise line, but never have I seen it done as well as on this ship! There were almost never any kids in this area, and the few that went through literally went through - I forgot many times that there were even kids on this cruise!
Rain Forest - Probably one of the main reasons I am hooked on the Fantasy. I LOVED the showers! They are almost impossible to properly describe - scented with colored lights, sounds, multiple shower head types, etc. Basically if you go in the tropical rainstorm shower, you feel like you are actually in a tropical rainstorm!
The sauna rooms were also wonderful. The hamam (sp) was the best! Very relaxing music, hot, and relaxing. However, if my husband had his way, he probably would have spent all of his time on the heated chairs looking out over the ocean.
The highlight had to be the two person hot tubs, looking out over the ocean. We were disappointed by the cool temp (which was apparently an issue throughout the entire cruise) and lack of pressure from the jets, but the overall experience was great!
Excursions - I was very impressed by how Disney handled letting people on and off the ship - this was done better than any other cruise I have been on - more efficiently and less stressful. We went on two excursions - a Mayan ruins tour at Costa Maya and a tequila and tacos tour at Cozamel.
We did not like Costa Maya and would have been happier just staying on board the ship or walking around the pier area. The tour at Cozamel was better, but again would have been equally happy staying on board the ship or walking around the pier.
The Castaway Cay was alright, but not as great as I had hoped. The food was just okay. The burgers were overcooked and it felt extremely rushed by the crew even though there were only a few people in line for food. I preferred the closest beach to the ship because there was a netting that kept the fish away from the shore area. While the adult area was definitely quieter, there was no such netting there, and we saw a number of fish. I'm scared of being touched by fish so this was a negative for me. Also, it took two buses to get out to the adult beach, so it was not the most convenient.
Room - On this cruise, we had the option of choosing a general category and being assigned a room at random. This option was a special deal that we have not seen available for any ship this year and saved us around $1,000. However, we got a room with an extended veranda, which was really nice. I could definitely see how the two room toliet/tub/shower situation could be very beneficial for families with young kids, but was disappointed that the tub was not big enough for comfortable adult use. The theme of the room was great and I enjoyed the free on demand movie/tv shows and room service available in the room.
Although I thought the ship was very clean, I got sick on board the ship and spent a significant portion of the trip in the room, so I was glad it was so comfy. I was disappointed that the verandas were opened up between the rooms toward the end of the trip through and were never closed because it greatly removed a lot of the privacy, which I wanted while sick.
My husband and I will be going back again on our first Eastern Caribbean cruise in a few months. It turns out that we will be on the first Halloween on the High Seas for the Fantasy and are super excited! I definitely think that Disney needs to continue these types of special events so that there is always a different experience each time we take a cruise. Next time, I think I'll try to convince my husband to take a trip in early November so that we can do a Chistmas one as well! So exciting to have the opportunity for these special events without having to literally travel on Christmas or Halloween.