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6 Disney Europe - British Isles & Western Cruise Reviews

After being blown away with the service provided by Disney cruise lines last year, we opted to book another cruise during our trip. We picked British Isles with the same Disney Magic that we sailed last year. Let's recap from my ... Read More
After being blown away with the service provided by Disney cruise lines last year, we opted to book another cruise during our trip. We picked British Isles with the same Disney Magic that we sailed last year. Let's recap from my last review, everything was perfect except for the food. I had to go out of my way to truly rate that food as below average. It was not enjoyable at all. I wrote about it here and I wrote to Disney about it. I also included my concern in the survey they ask you to fill out on the last day. I was quite happy to see that Disney Magic was dry docked a few months before our cruise which means during our cruise, the ship was already refreshed and cleaned. The biggest change we noticed was changing Cariocas dining to Tangled-themed dining. For my family and I, it was a welcomed change. Rapunzel's table now offers live entertainment for the diners where Rapunzel goes around singing and taking pictures with the guest. A nice addition compared to the dull and dark Cariocas dining experience. Food, now I'm sure many wants to know how the food is, I am happy to say that the kitchen has improved 180 degrees. The food offering was great! Dinners was spectacular and enjoyable. Everything was seasoned well and executed very well. They erased my worse fear of a poor dining experience. Foodies can now rejoice! Service. As always, 100% on point. Our main steward Esther (table 15) provided the best experience possible. Her skills match those of Michelin-rated restaurant servers. Disney should be pleased to have her on-board. Her skill-set and attention to detail is top-notch. She deserves to be moved up to management. It would be a shame and a disservice to her skills and knowledge if she stays as a steward. She was very attentive, quick, and caring. She really took care of our table 15. Her assistant Irena was also good but not as good as Esther. She had her challenges as the days went on but proved herself on the last day that she can hang. Our room steward Jojo has always been spectacular ensuring our room is always clean and stocked up with items that are always needed. His attention to detail is also appreciated. Little things that he did that other guest may not have notice doesn't go unnoticed with me. For example, we have very long iphone charging cables. We used the USB ports on the clock right bedside the bed, I guess he noticed that it was always hanging to the floor, one day I came back to notice that he wrapped it with Velcro to keep it clean and tight. He arranges our papers on the table for us and bathroom has always kept clean and hair free. Spa. This was such a treat. Our 3 year old daughter gifted us a couple's massage spa by going to the Oceaneer's club for 2 hours. Our 75 min couple's hot stone spa was amazing. Disney employs very good masseuse who has "the touch". My wife and I feel asleep and felt relaxed & recharged after the treatment. It was very pricey at $400+ for 75 minutes but well worth it. Oceaneer's club. This is probably my only qualm with Disney's offering. The oceaneer's club caters to kids between 3 to 12 years old. I feel that the gap is too big. We were able to use it twice for my 3 year old. one for 1 hour and the other one for 2 hours when we went to the spa. Both times, I saw my daughter just on the ipad playing alone. At home, she does not get any ipad time unless we're on vacation which we allow her unlimited time with the ipad/iphone except on bus rides and dining. There was very little interaction for the staff to push kids to do activities that are more mentally and physically challenging. I know they cannot force kids to do what they want but, offering a structured activities will allow the kids to do things as a group...like school. The ratio of staff to kids is pretty good so I did not understand why this is not done. After the 2nd time our daughter was there, we decided as a family to just stay together and we're fortunate that our daughter loves to be with us. Because of these little to big improvements and continued high level of service, we put a open deposit down for a possible 2020 cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My family thoroughly enjoyed our Disney cruise on the Magic. We flew from the US to London and used Disney transportation to get to the departure port of Dover. Disney employs local people to do the ground work such as greeting and driving ... Read More
My family thoroughly enjoyed our Disney cruise on the Magic. We flew from the US to London and used Disney transportation to get to the departure port of Dover. Disney employs local people to do the ground work such as greeting and driving as well as leading tour groups in each destination. Because these are people who live in the destination areas, they are able to provide more interesting and varied commentary on the locations and Disney seems to do well with vetting and training to ensure that they live up to the Disney standards for customer service. As an example, we had a guide in Cobh, Ireland who serenaded us with Irish folk songs as our bus meandered back to the ship from Blarney Castle after making us all laugh with his dry humor. Our cabin was an outside room with a balcony. At about 300 square feet, it never seemed crowded, even with four adult sized occupants (mom, dad, and two teens) in it. We arranged with our cabin host to have the kids' bunks kept open all week. There was still plenty of space to walk back and forth between the desk and the lower bunk to access the balcony and the part of the room closest to it. We did not have any issues with noise, though we were located on deck 8. The food on the ship varied from just ok to truly scrumptious. The fast service places on deck were decent but not memorable. The buffet at Cabanas was constantly changing and we did find that they quality of the food there was hit or miss. Nothing was inedible, but some dishes were quite bland or seemed to have too many ingredients thrown in to "elevate" them. My husband loved the eggs benedict. I had a curry dish one lunch that was fantastic. The kids always found something they liked. I had informed the staff in advance that I am gluten intolerent. My server went above and beyond to make sure that I always had something palatable to eat. Each night she showed me the dinner menus for the next evening, and took my order in advance. She also went as far as to preorder gluten free Mickey waffles for my breakfast at cabanas and a gluten free pizza from Pinnochio's for my lunch. The three main dining rooms on the Magic are Rapunzel's, Lumiere's, and the Animator's Palate. The food is equally good at all three. What makes these places different from one another is the theme and entertainment. The Animator's Palate is my favorite. The sketches on the wall screens change and light up along with accompanying music. The waitstaff become part of the show as dinner ends. Because our cruise was in England, Ireland, and Scotland in September, we did not take much advantage of the pools on board, despite the fact that they were heated. Mainly these were utilized by younger children and their parents. I felt bad for the lifeguards on duty, who wore winter jackets with their shorts and had few charges to watch. I have heard about people fighting for deck chairs on other cruises, but this was certainly not an issue for us! The live shows (I saw three different musicals in my week on board) were Broadway quality. Each was just an hour long and over too soon for me, though perhaps a better length for younger audience members. These shows feature familiar music and characters along with some very cool special effects and actors frequently run up and down the aisles as part of the performance. I have saved the best for last. The most memorable part of this cruise for my family: the Disney cast members. Many Disney employees went above and beyond to make the week a great one for us. Mariya and Anto, our servers, were so fun and helpful. Davisson the photographer always went the extra mile to make my shy teen smile. Our host, Ferdie, was efficient and accommodating. Some people may hesitate to choose the older ships in the Disney fleet because they are smaller and older. Disney has done a great job of updating the Magic and I think it is a perfect size. The magic and the Wonder can carry 2,400 passengers. The Dream and Fantasy have a capacity of 4,000 passengers each! I am not sure that we would get the same feeling of knowing our cast members or fellow passengers if there were twice as many people on board. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
There are many factors that will influence overall ratings: The ship, the food, the service, the destination visited/itinerary. These are all within the cruise line control. Weather, how smooth the ride was is much more subjective and ... Read More
There are many factors that will influence overall ratings: The ship, the food, the service, the destination visited/itinerary. These are all within the cruise line control. Weather, how smooth the ride was is much more subjective and can sometimes make an ok trip wonderful or the other way around. Being on the Disney Magic for 10 nights, on the once a year Norway-Iceland-Scotland cruise proved to be pretty magical. This was my 4th Disney Cruise (Bahamian and Caribbean before, on the 3 other ships) and this one was the best by a far margin - primarily due to the destinations visited but also the top notch service, excellent food, and great entertainment throughout Ship: The Magic is the oldest ship in the Disney fleet and at time, it will show as it is a bit more prone to maintenance issues and minor deficiencies than other ship. However, this is also a ship that is very special to Disney and they are taking great care of it. Common areas are in great shape and the Magic is overall is really nice mid-size ship. Its size allows you to get to know staff, other people on the ship and experience almost all areas - especially on such a long itinerary Cabin: Standard Disney cabin with Verandah. Verandah is oversized with a whitewall due to far AFT position. Other than a smell coming from the drain, this was a pleasant room: Comfortable bed, nice balcony, ample space, nice split bathroom with full bath/shower. Being far AFT, it is subject to some shaking - and I did find it to be a tad too much on a few occasions while cruising - (normal for these rooms to shake a bit when boat goes in reverse or turns around) Dining: Food quality was excellent at all main rotational dining restaurant. A bit disappointed though in the food one one of the night at Rapunzel Royal Table. Presentation and taste was great throughout. Main buffet (Cabanas) served really good quality food throughout the trip - but lacked a bit of variety. Very interesting options in the quick serve areas (eg: Gyros/schwarma), good pizzas from Pinocchio. Pretty good soft-serve ice cream too (better than what they have in the Caribbean, and it does actually have time to freeze!) Entertainment: This is Disney. Disney Dream show is a great finale. Kids Club has plenty of activities Shore excursions: Pretty decent in Kristiansand, Alesund, Stavanager and Reykjavik - although pricey. Less impressive in Invergordon. All in, would do it again in a heartbeat. Disney is a notch above the other cruise lines and on this cruise, they really went "all in". Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
This cruise had great ports and two nicely scheduled sea days. It was a great trip! The ship is in beautiful shape. We had wonderful food, terrific service and enjoyed our excursions. The shows on the ship were great though they are ... Read More
This cruise had great ports and two nicely scheduled sea days. It was a great trip! The ship is in beautiful shape. We had wonderful food, terrific service and enjoyed our excursions. The shows on the ship were great though they are repeating them on cruises which is not my preference. We had sailed with DCL several times but had not sailed in Europe until this trip. We did a couple of days pre-cruise in Barcelona and stayed at a DCL recommended hotel (Barcelona Renaissance). It's location and travel to the port were both great. Our DCL excursions in Lisbon (Lisbon Highlights) was a nice overview of a beautiful city. Sailing into and out of this port was breathtaking. We also enjoyed our excursion in Vigo, Spain which took us to a nearby town of Bionia where we toured a fortress and a replica of a sailing vessel like the one Columbus used. We had a stateroom with a balcony and enjoyed a little time out there. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
The cruise took us from Dover, England to Newcastle, England to Kirkwall, Scotland, to Reykjavik and Akureyri, Iceland, to Bergen and Stavanger, Norway and ended up at Copenhagen, Denmark, We did three days pre-cruise in London and three ... Read More
The cruise took us from Dover, England to Newcastle, England to Kirkwall, Scotland, to Reykjavik and Akureyri, Iceland, to Bergen and Stavanger, Norway and ended up at Copenhagen, Denmark, We did three days pre-cruise in London and three days post-cruise in Copenhagen. The ship was immaculate, service attentive, food excellent and captain and crew accessible, friendly and knowledgeable. The ports were magnificent. The history and culture in each city was amazing. The scenery, from the snowcapped mountains, to the lush greenery and the small villages was outstanding. While the weather was chilly, rainy and/or damp for most of the trip, it did not impede any of our plans. We were prepared with jackets and rainwear. It did clear up several times during our port adventures. While sailing in the North Sea, the captain alerted us to potential rough seas predicted for the evening/night. There were twenty foot swells, but ironically, that night we slept our best - perhaps it was the rocking like a cradle that kept us sleeping so well. We crossed into the Arctic Circle enroute to Iceland and since it was the summer solstice, there was no sunrise or sunset time - it was light for 24 hours. The locals in the port cities were friendly, accommodating and knowledgeable. We were able to enjoy delicious local fare in many of the ports. People in Newcastle lined the countryside across from our port and waved good-bye to our ship as we left. At Kirkwall, a Scottish bagpipe band serenaded our ship at port and a troupe of Scottish dancers put on a show for us at port. While all the countries/ports were magnificent, our favorites were both ports in Iceland and Stavanger, Norway. We would highly recommend this cruise and the ports. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Br.oadway style shows are the best. The new show "Tangled: the Musical" is phenominal. The crew are so caring to make sure all your needs are met. The officers are always willing to help. The excursions were awesome. The ... Read More
Br.oadway style shows are the best. The new show "Tangled: the Musical" is phenominal. The crew are so caring to make sure all your needs are met. The officers are always willing to help. The excursions were awesome. The service is 5 stars! I have sailed on many cruise lines, but Disney is my favorite. Our whole group even travels without children. There are many adult areas where no children are allowed. Plenty of activities on the ship at all times whether you want adult only, family, or children activities. Even though my kids are adults, the children's clubs are the best I've ever seen. The regional menus each night have items from each port that we visited to give us a taste of the area. I loved that addition. I will be sailing on Disney again. I am so pleased with the ship and service. I highly recommend to anyone considering the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
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