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75 Disney Los Angeles Cruise Reviews

The Disney Wonder had the BEST Entertainment we have ever experienced on a Cruise. This is the first Disney Cruise we have taken. This was our 22nd Cruise and Holland is our favorite line. The production of shows offered on our Cruise was ... Read More
The Disney Wonder had the BEST Entertainment we have ever experienced on a Cruise. This is the first Disney Cruise we have taken. This was our 22nd Cruise and Holland is our favorite line. The production of shows offered on our Cruise was outstanding. From shows that reminded us of the plays in Los Angeles to the individual entertainers they were the best we have seen out of the Five Cruise lines we had previously sailed on. The children loved Mickey and all the other princesses that we all have seen at the movies or at Disneyland. It was worth the price of admission if you had children with you to see their faces. The rooms are outstanding in the layout and the square feet. The largest room we have had in all the cruises we have sailed on. Now the bad that will keep us from cruising on Disney again. The FOOD was not up to the standard of Holland, Celebrity, or Princess cruise lines. The buffet is half to two thirds the size of the above cruise lines. They repeat the same items day after day. They had Shrimp with the red sauce 12 of the 14 days in the buffet and the other 2 days they had it for dinner in the dining room. There wasn't a sandwich bar with the normal 4 to 6 different meat selections. They had sandwiches made with everything on them with a choice of Ham or Turkey sitting on ice that made the bottom bun soggy daily. The final thing was in 14 nights there wan no Filet Minion on the menu. ALL other 7 day cruises I have been on offered this meat selection at least one day and some twice. But when you look at the food at Disneyland you do not have quality dining options there either. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
This 14-day cruise was the second cruise for my husband and me, who are in our 60's. The first was 7 days on Carnival this past spring. Here are my impressions and comments. As first-time Disney cruisers, we read a lot ahead of time ... Read More
This 14-day cruise was the second cruise for my husband and me, who are in our 60's. The first was 7 days on Carnival this past spring. Here are my impressions and comments. As first-time Disney cruisers, we read a lot ahead of time on the forums so that we'd know what to expect. Overall, we had a very good time, but there were some problems. First, we never got to see the Animator's Palate dining room do its full-color transformation. Our dining rotation had us in Animator's Palate on the second night, and that was formal night. It was all black and white. I asked at Guest Services why there hadn't been a color change, and was told the reason was to avoid color conflict with the dressy clothes (because of the photography, I guess). The second time we were to eat in A.P., an Indian buffet was being offered in Beach Blanket. Since the closest Indian restaurant where we live is three hours away, we jumped at the chance to have Indian food, which we love. That was the one and only night on the 14-day cruise that the color transformation was done. We did not know this would happen only once. We were very disappointed as this was part of the magic we had looked forward to. When I asked about the color transformation at Guest Services, I was told we were “through the dining rotation” so we were out of luck. This was confusing, since of course we rotated dining rooms throughout the cruise. It's not that big a deal, but some sense of sympathy from Guest Services would have been nice. Because of peculiar scheduling, we also missed our character breakfast. Since we were on the late dinner seating, our dining host told us at dinner the night before not to miss a special breakfast surprise at 9:45 a.m. the next morning. When we got back to our room to see the next day's Navigator, we saw this conflicted with the next in a series of 9:30 a.m. lectures by a retired Panama Canal pilot leading up to the actual passage through the canal. So we called the desk to say we couldn't come to the breakfast because of the lecture. We didn't really know it was the character breakfast, although we later realized that's what it was. It's unfortunate that the daily Navigator was not in hand when our dining host told us about the breakfast; perhaps we could have arranged something else with her. Or perhaps we could have been told that the lecturer's slides and comments would be shown later on the cabin TV, as we later learned. As first-time Disney cruisers, we felt that a small bit of extra care with us would have gone a long way. I should add that I never saw our dining “tickets” (?) till late in the cruise, since they had been buried under various papers, so we did not have them to refer to. Personally, I think the Panama Canal lectures should have been scheduled for late morning anyway or some other time that wouldn't conflict with character breakfasts or other desired activities. Some of my complaints, like those above, have to do with scheduling. The ship showed perhaps Disney's best movie ever, Mary Poppins, so that it conflicted either with show time or dinner, no matter which dinner seating one had. I inquired at Guest Services when it would be shown again and was told that they didn't know but they assured me the scheduled movies would be shown many times throughout the cruise. In fact, Mary Poppins was not shown again. It puzzles me that Guest Services wasn't able to look up the cruise movie schedule. As novice cruisers we are curious whether all or most cruise lines keep planned activities a secret till the night before. Why not have schedules for several days ahead, or at least highlights for coming days? I do understand that changes might have to be made, but it would be nice to have an idea of what's ahead. Disney Wonder had a tastings schedule printed out for the whole cruise so that one could plan those. My husband and I thought the evening shows by the Disney dancers and singers were fantastic. Truly excellent! The talent brought in from outside was also outstanding. I was impressed very much with the way they interacted with the audience, especially the children. Those interactions were highlights of the trip, along with the actual Panama Canal passage. The Wonder is a beautiful ship. The hard floors on the outdoor decks throughout were kept clean and as dry as they could be to prevent slipping. The dining rooms were beautiful, the seats comfortable. The buffet venue was very crowded for breakfast and tended to be stuffy. The décor there was charming. We loved the location of our stateroom, close to the forward elevator bank. The layout of our room was great, with the seating area next to the window and the sofa feeling more like a sofa than the bench-like thing in our Carnival cabin. The room could have been cleaner; dust coated the bedside lamps, and when my husband looked under the bed to find another electrical outlet (to no avail), he found bits of things that vacuuming would take care of. We learned later that the stewards have only about 20 minutes per cabin, with no assistant - at least in our part of the ship. Our steward took really good care of us. He brought extra hangers and extra Navigators for us and changed the time on the cabin alarm clock for us since the instructions didn't help us do it ourselves. One of the lampshades in the room was cracked in two places, and this had been repaired by wiring the sections together. There was only one place to plug in electronics and my fan. I was glad I brought an extension cord. On the first day aboard, Saturday, a sprinkler head in the living room area leaked onto one of my husband's electronic gadgets (no damage). He told the steward, who put in a maintenance request. This would be a complex job involving plumbing, carpentry and electricians. On Monday, my husband spoke with Guest Services about it, and on Wednesday the repair was made, taking most of the day. The contents of the room were draped, so we did not have to move out, just stay out for most of the day. Problem solved. We loved the idea of the assigned cellphones so we could keep up with each other; however, we did not succeed in reaching each other at any point because they were set to just vibrate and buzz at a very low volume. We could never hear them, so we stopped carrying them. We appreciated being able to watch the news from time to time on the stateroom TV. Pirate Night was fun, and the fireworks were awesome. These festivities were scheduled on the Cartagena port day so people were tired, though. (Again, odd scheduling, not to choose a sea day.) The ship seemed to roll up the sidewalks, so to speak, pretty early. Most tables, chairs and lounges were roped off, stacked or otherwise put away by around 10 p.m. The tables and chairs in the adult area were still out, but the cushions on the adult poolside lounge chairs were removed in the evening. We read a lot but had a hard time finding outdoor seating that provided enough light to read by at night. The chairs in the Mickey and Goofy pool areas had mesh seats so were more comfortable to sit on than the wood-slatted ones in the adult area, but a large proportion of mesh chairs were put away at night. We did not spend time in the indoor adult cafe but it looked very nice and calming. As for daytime, the pool deck overall is so sheltered from the elements that cooling breezes were largely missing. We would roam around looking for a shady and breezy spot, or go back to the room to resume reading. There's no shade on the top deck. Deck 4 was wonderfully comfortable but did not have enough chairs and was a long way from the drink station. Some of the deck chairs were broken. The dining room seating assignment was our biggest problem. We were seated with a young stay-at-home mother and her preschool child at a four-person table. Things were pleasant enough but conversation was very limited. The child did not talk to us at all, despite our efforts at engagement. The mother was quiet, too, although she did share some of her cruising experience with us when we asked her questions. We got along well enough, but surely they were just as uncomfortable as we were. We flirted briefly early on with the idea of asking for reassignment but we felt that would seem rude and disruptive. This was a really stupid seating assignment, and we were reminded night after night how much we appreciate simple adult conversation. The food in the dining rooms was mostly very good. (By the way, adults should try the Mickey bar for dessert sometime  really good.) We ordered wine by the glass a couple of times but stopped because the servings were chintzy. (I would estimate 3 to 3.5 ounces, not even reaching the belly of the glass.) On the last night, I ordered “a glass of Chardonnay,” and then a second. It turned out that my drink server had chosen wine that cost $17 a glass. This was my fault for not asking for the wine list, but really, he should have offered. We found the tastings (cognac, whiskey, etc.) to be fun experiences and a good way to meet people. Although I'm not a particularly huge Disney fun, I had a blast watching the kids interact with the Disney characters. I took pictures of quite a few of the characters, and I had my picture taken with Donald and Daisy, though I didn't buy the photo. It was great not having photographers in our faces all the time the way they were on the Carnival cruise we took. On the other hand, the Disney Vacation Club people were persistent, with fliers, brochures and phone calls. We had unfortunately talked with one of the representatives in the embarkation area, thinking he was just a friendly Disney rep and not knowing he was selling time-shares. What else? I liked the attention paid to hygiene, with hand wipes offered before meals and trashcans placed near bathroom doors so that paper towels could be used when unlatching bathroom doors. At the drink station (yay, free soda and coffee!), there was only one container of wipes, on the coffee side, so most people were not using wipes before fixing their sodas. Public bathrooms were frequently cleaned, and I don't think I ever saw a bathroom counter with puddles of water. Boiled shrimp in the shell was offered nearly every day for lunch at the buffet. Cookies too! At the spa, I got a very nice haircut. Our port excursions were very good. The buses were quite comfortable and well air-conditioned, thank goodness. They had seat belts, too. The excursions were less expensive than those we did on Carnival. The disembarkation process seemed to fall apart in a push to get people off the ship. The person making the announcements had a very thick foreign accent that we could not decipher well enough to hear which groups were being allowed to go. The seven or more groups that passengers were assigned to suddenly became just two huge groups and within minutes one huge group and a very long slow line. The port terminal lines to collect our bags and then to go through Customs, though, were much longer. Baggage collection was easy because of the group assignments. For this trip, we were fortunate to have gotten a great fare by which we paid in full for a cabin category, not a specific cabin, at a discounted rate. All in all, it was a pleasant two weeks, and Disney gave us a lovely limited-edition lithograph commemorating the cruise.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
In terms of family experience - I was extremely impressed. We sailed with a set of three year old boy-girl twins and the children's programs were excellent. Another thing that I really liked was the fact that I didn't have to ... Read More
In terms of family experience - I was extremely impressed. We sailed with a set of three year old boy-girl twins and the children's programs were excellent. Another thing that I really liked was the fact that I didn't have to worry about the children being exposed to age-inappropriate entertainment. And in fact when our son took off on us and got away we went to find a crewmember for help after searching for about 2 minutes. The guy then made a phone call and told us that he had not only been found - he was already in the Oceaneer Club (the area set aside for children 2-4 years old). I was extremely impressed at the proactive approach they take to lost children. The food was very good (my previous cruises were on Holland America and Disney came close to but did not match HA's food). The service was above excellent however. We kept the same servers for the entire cruise and after a couple of days our preferred drinks were waiting for us on the table when we showed up for our dinner. The 24 hour a day free soda, coffee, milk, and ice cream was also something they deserve 5 stars for. The character meets were also impressive as Disney uses their entertainment staff to represent the characters. This meant that the people dressed up as the characters were trained stage actors instead of some random person stuffed into a mickey suit. As a result the characters displayed the same mannerisms as we saw in the movies. The kids loved the character meets and couldn't get enough of them. Another pleasant surprise was the ships stores. I was expecting the prices to be jacked up but discovered that the prices on the ship were the same as in the Disney store in the Mall near my home. (Leading to overstuffed suitcases on our flight home.) Our room was large (214 sq feet) with an excellent layout. The split bathrooms were very helpful in terms of getting everybody showered pottyed and dressed in the mornings. Disney classic movies played on both Funnelvision and the shipboard cable system. My only recommendation for improvement is that the channel guide on the cable be modified to show the start times for the movies. Can't really comment on value for the money because we qualified for the military discount and essentially got the cruise for half-price. In summary - we loved it and are definitely going to sail on Disney again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
We flew into LAX and had no trouble finding our Disney Rep. and onto the bus for our cruise. Check in was relatively simple because we were returning cruisers....all of our information was already there! Do not remember having it like that ... Read More
We flew into LAX and had no trouble finding our Disney Rep. and onto the bus for our cruise. Check in was relatively simple because we were returning cruisers....all of our information was already there! Do not remember having it like that with other cruise lines. . Buffet luncheon....food fairly good....to excited to eat much. Muster drill was in Parrott Key.....not outside in the heat....really nice. For our late dining we had 3 other couples and it was a match made in heaven. We looked forward each day to our evening meal.....usually sat with the same people for our pre dinner show. E-Harmony couldn't have matched us any better. I will only say the food was ok.....I don't eat a lot of steak but that was about the only thing I liked for 2 or 3 days in a row. I'm usually the one who likes to try new things but not much of their "new" was up to what I liked. We had a day at sea and the first stop was Cabo San Lucas. We booked our own boat tour of the area for $15 a person and then did some shopping. The second was Puerto Vallarta....raining and for a change of pace it rained some more. We did a bit of shopping and back to the boat....we had been to both of these stops before. Three days at sea....lots of things to do on a Disney ship besides the characters....a broadway actress shared her adventures on the stage, a former canel p[ilot shared lots of inside knowledge concerning the canel, first run movies and the pool. Then we went through the Panama Canal. This is an experience not to be forgotten. We are not early risers.....we woke, looked out our window and we were deep inside the canal....We watched for a bit, went to 10 and then to 9....back to our room because the view was so much better. Day 9 of the cruise found us in Cartagena Columbia. We had never been to this city and set out to explore. Another couple from our dining table joined us with 2 more couples in hiring a mini van for 5 1/2 hours. The charge was $15 a person and we had a FULL tour of this beautiful, historic city. We saw the Convent, the Fortress, walked all over old town, drove thru new town with it's wonderful beaches and came back to the ship tired but happy cruiserswe. We had a dessert extravaganza one night and a pirates party with fireworks another night. Disney works hard to ensure all ages are happy on their cruise. The entertainment was fantastic......Golden Mickeys, Disney Dreams, Beatles Tribute, Grant Norman and a magician and a comedian. They had the flaming Baked Alaska where other cruise lines told us it wasn't to be anymore because of the maritime laws. 2 more sea days and then Cozumel where we shopped and drank margauritas till sailing time. Another sea day and we arrived in Galveston. This was a very confusing experience and I'm not exactly sure who is to blame. First we were told late dining would dine in the same dining room that we had dined in the evening before and at 8:30. The last bus to Houston left at 9:30 and they told us we would be better off in the buffet....we wern't pleased.....hoped to dine with our friends one last time BUT, we would not want to miss the bus. By 8 we were waiting in the lounge and did NOT get in line to go to customs til 9.....they assured us they were holding the busses. Took forever to get our luggage and into a line for customs. Customs was relatively quick.......our bust left at 10:30. Most of the hold up seemed to be the Galveston people. Many comments were made that they would not go to the Galveston port again. This was our second Disney Cruise and I would recommend them highly. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
This was our second DCL cruise and we traveled with another couple - all without children. From an adult perspective, this cruise has a lot to offer even if it seems to be very much pointed towards families with kids. We found the small ... Read More
This was our second DCL cruise and we traveled with another couple - all without children. From an adult perspective, this cruise has a lot to offer even if it seems to be very much pointed towards families with kids. We found the small number of children on this cruise to actually be kind of sad - since we love watching them get so excited about Mickey and all the activities to do onboard. Embarkation was fast and efficient. I can't say enough about the superlative customer service experience on this ship from start to finish. Our friends noted that this is the first cruise they have taken, where on disembarkation, they felt just as loved as the first day. Usually, there's a rush to just get you off the ship. They also enjoyed the less 'nickel and dime' feel you end up paying for on other cruise lines. Entertainment was top notch - can't say enough about it. Yes, it was mostly PG, but we come to appreciate that more in this current world. We even laughed when we were watching one of the adult movies one night, and someone actually cursed - it was jarring to hear that again. Dining was delicious. 14 days on a ship can become very tedious if you eat in the same dining room the whole time, so the rotational dining concept really made things more fun. We enjoyed two dinners and one brunch in Palo - and it was worth it. We ate the brunch while transiting through the canal locks - so imagine our happiness to sail through Gatun lake while drinking champagne in air conditioning! We felt bad for everyone else who was outside. I wouldn't venture to say that all the meals were 5 stars - nothing ever is perfect. I would say there were a few misses - but they were the exception to what was consistently a very tasty menu. Listen to the staff recommendations - they tried to steer me in the right direction and I should have listened to them. If you don't look happy with your meal - never fear, it takes them about 10 seconds to notice and they immediately descend upon you like a SWAT team to bring another dish out. Now that's impressive! Pirate night was something very special, and even though this cruise was more heavily adult laden - it was fun to see everyone festive and quite a few people in pirate gear! We forced our friends to bring costumes, and they ended up enjoying the fact they had. Because the ship had such few children, they opened up their kids areas for adult exclusives - how often do you get to paint Disney animation cels in the Oceaneer Lab? One last word on the rooms - we opted with an inside standard cabin this time. I worried it would be too small, but it was quite comfy. Our friends thought it was actually spacious compared to other lines. if you are a kid at heart, or just want some exceptional customer service dusted with tinkerbell - this is the cruise for you. One third of the ship is adults only and we spent more time with unruly children on the air flight then the entire cruise. Plus, the kids are quite fun. So is the fact you can bring whatever alcohol you like onboard - it's not an issue. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
Choosing to celebrate a 70th birthday on a Disney ship was a Slam Dunk - based on all our previous experiences, Disney is absolutely TOPS in producing wonderful celebrations and glorious memories. Well, friends, Disney Cruise Line is NOT ... Read More
Choosing to celebrate a 70th birthday on a Disney ship was a Slam Dunk - based on all our previous experiences, Disney is absolutely TOPS in producing wonderful celebrations and glorious memories. Well, friends, Disney Cruise Line is NOT Disneyland or Disney World. The details of what went wrong here are not important to others who are thinking of sailing aboard the Disney Wonder. It is a greater service to pass along the caution against expecting Disney Cruise Line to come through for you on a pre-planned celebration with the same flawless professionalism, preparation, and attention to detail that people usually experience at the Disney parks. Moving on, this was a West Coast repositioning cruise and, as sometimes happens on repositions, there was a certain lackluster quality to a number of things. For passengers on repositions, crew members can seem tired, slightly slack, even a bit let down or detached. The quality of the food, of service, and of entertainment is frequently somewhat below par. It is as if "Prime Time" on any cruise ship is specific to a given region where itineraries are repeated for several months, so that moving the ship between, let's say, winter and summer cruise regions upsets and diminishes crew performance, engagement, and morale. All of these "sags" were noticeable on this particular cruise. The ship itself seemed clean, well-maintained and, other than equipment failures in the theater which disrupted the schedule of live shows, in excellent condition. My inside stateroom was large and comfortable, while the bathroom was really small (compared to other ships and cruise lines) and musty. As other reviewers have mentioned, the three main dining rooms feel cramped and crowded, with too much noise and distraction caused by too many waiter stations. Up on Deck 9, the casual Beach Blanket Buffet has far too few tables to accommodate the number of passengers on this ship and, as the ship moves North into colder regions, the fact that all swimming pools and surrounding seating areas are outdoors (no sliding roof) means swimmers, sunbathers, and people at tables (and their food) get unpleasantly cold, fast. The Wonder was just not designed to sail beyond warm waters! On the bright side, the Wonder's 2-day-1-overnight stay in San Francisco is a huge plus! People who already know San Francisco had ample time to do things they love to do there, while those interested in excursions were treated to an unusually long and varied list of options - some of them involving quite a bit of distance. Pier 35 is perfectly located right on the F (Heritage) trolley line, close to the Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf tourist areas, as well as to downtown, BART, and the cable car lines. Another plus was the thoughtful appearance of fleece throw blankets on most of the deck chairs, making it possible to brave the cold winds and spend some time out on deck, even to watch one of the poolside "funnel vision" movies. Also, the pizza on Deck 9 was consistently yummy, as were the panini. On the other hand, the hamburgers were pretty awful ... and you'd think that any enterprise called Disney would at least get the great American hamburger right. One last and serious minus. At every activity, indoors and out, the amplified sound was deafeningly, painfully loud. Children (Disney's bread and butter, after all) complained, covered their ears, even cried. Why does DCL believe that LOUD equals fun and FRENETIC equals exciting??? By the middle of the cruise, the physical and behavioral impact of these never-ending, ear-splitting, hyperactive assaults on passengers - of ALL ages - was easily visible. Children in particular showed signs of increasing neural overload. Good Godfrey, DCL: Please tone it down and calm it down a tad; everyone will truly function better and have much more fun! This was honestly not one of the more enjoyable cruise experiences I've ever had. I won't cruise with DCL again and, even though several members of the Wonder's staff made extraordinary, personal, and deeply-appreciated efforts to salvage my ruined celebration for me, I cannot recommend DCL either to those who want something a tiny bit out of the ordinary or to those who are not taking a cruise centered on the children in their family. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
My wife and I are veteran cruisers ( mostly Holland America) but this was first time on Disney with daughter, son-in-law, and 2 grand-daughters.So many positives--shows were a much higher quality than I expected, rotational dining was ... Read More
My wife and I are veteran cruisers ( mostly Holland America) but this was first time on Disney with daughter, son-in-law, and 2 grand-daughters.So many positives--shows were a much higher quality than I expected, rotational dining was wonderful--my grand-daughters were charmed by Anthony, our server.Our 5 year old grand-daughter loved the character breakfast, the princess tea--she loved it all. Our 2 year-old was a bit overwhelmed by the characters.Food was fine--not up to Holland America standards but certainly acceptable. We dined one night in Palo--excellent--worth the $20 charge.Getting information from Customer Service before the cruise was sometimes difficult. This was a re-positioning cruise for the Wonder from LA to Vancouver where it will be doing Alaska cruises for the summer. Alaska does not permit fireworks so we were mistakenly informed there were no fireworks on our cruise--there were fireworks.Unfortunately, we hit cold and windy weather from day 2---since the Wonder has no provision for covering the pool areas, we really couldn't enjoy that feature.Don't want this to sound overly negative---we really did have a fabulous time and probably will look forward to a warmer climate in 2-3 years. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
This was our first experience with Disney Cruise Lines and we loved it! We took a trip on the Carnival Victory in September to the southern Caribbean and enjoyed the time together but the ship, crew, food, entertainment, etc., didn't ... Read More
This was our first experience with Disney Cruise Lines and we loved it! We took a trip on the Carnival Victory in September to the southern Caribbean and enjoyed the time together but the ship, crew, food, entertainment, etc., didn't come anywhere close to the Disney Wonder! Our Disney cabin with an outside view was much larger, better appointed and more comfortable than our balcony cabin on Carnival. We loved the seating area next to the window, the split bath with tub, and the significantly larger storage areas. The quality of the bedding was really nice and comfortable. Everyone we met with the crew on the Disney Wonder was so friendly and guest-focused. We were regularly greeted by all levels of crew members and asked about our experience, where we were from, etc. Clearly we felt welcome and like we were honored guests. What a difference it made in our overall view of the Wonder compared to the Victory. Our dining experiences on both ships was very good but we felt a completely different, very personal experience on Disney. We saw our servers throughout the ship virtually every day and they greeted us by name. We were made to feel like we had new friends! Disney has a dining rotation that lets us experience every dining room about four to five times during the two weeks. We had the same serving crew but the change in venues was really nice and kept us from being bored. The food choices were extremely varied and even the regular breakfast and lunch buffets were really nice. One day at lunch we had two types of shrimp, crawfish, snow crab legs, fish, beef tenderloin, chicken, and pork. We really never got tired of the food! Entertainment on Disney was really over the top! Imagine Disney caliber entertainment instead of "cruise ship" entertainment. It was great every night! The acts created by Disney were great and the entertainers brought on the ship were as well. For several days we were treated to absolutely terrific presentations on the Panama Canal by Captain Kenneth Puckett, retired Panama Canal Pilot. His programs were extremely entertaining and educational. We didn't and wouldn't miss a single one! What a great touch! The ports of call were OK but no where near the highlight of this trip. The time on the ship, the endless high quality movies, many in 3D and some first run, the entertainment, etc., made the Wonder a true destination to us. Overall, this was the best cruise experience we have ever had. We are retired and loved the children on board. The way Disney treats them is so refreshing and touching. I think we are now sold on Disney Cruise Line and it will be very tough to enjoy another cruise company because I just don't think they can hold a candle to Disney. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
We have just recently returned from the 14-day Panama Canal repositioning cruise aboard the 'Disney Wonder', and all we can say is "WOW!!!". Our first cruise experience was a 7-day Alaska/Glacier Bay/Inside Passage ... Read More
We have just recently returned from the 14-day Panama Canal repositioning cruise aboard the 'Disney Wonder', and all we can say is "WOW!!!". Our first cruise experience was a 7-day Alaska/Glacier Bay/Inside Passage cruise aboard a much-smaller predecessor of Holland America's 'Westerdam', 13 years ago. While we had high expectations for a 'Disney' cruise, we were simply blown-away at how far cruising -- and particularly cruising with children -- has advanced in the past decade. The 'Disney Wonder' is simply a lovely ship inside and out. What brings this to our full attention is that it is the staff that makes the ship lovely -- and not just from the constant scrubbing, cleaning, polishing, and painting -- but from how the entire crew -- from the most senior officer down to the most junior deckhand -- stops whatever they're busy doing to smile and say "Good morning", "Good afternoon", or "Good Evening". The minor complaints and observations offered here are vastly outweighed by the superior/exceptional/always 'above and beyond' customer service and friendliness expressed by every crew and cast member at every opportunity. We found our experience so superb that we booked a 7-day Alaska/Glacier Bay/Inside Passage cruise aboard the 'Disney Wonder', leaving August 19, 2013. We were simply unable and unwilling to get off the ship without a firm commitment to a return date! The minor concerns: - It appeared that the oval "coffee table" in our stateroom is supposed to raise and lower, theoretically making it easier for kids to use it as a dining table. The adjustment feature on our table was broken. This presented little inconvenience to us, but as the cruise went on, such a minor issue seemed out of character considering the otherwise excellent condition of the ship and her furnishings. We gained a little insight as to what the furnishings might suffer after watching a surprisingly large amount of broken furniture and fixtures being offloaded at the dock in Cartagena! - Staterooms need more electrical outlets -- particularly in the desk area - for recharging electronic equipment such as cameras, video cameras, tablets, e-readers, laptops, etc. The chargers for these units often take up an entire outlet, and the switch for the desk lights built in to the electrical outlet prevents plugging a charger into one of the outlets, further limiting recharging options. Next time, we're bringing an extension cord/power strip for recharging batteries. - We're from the Pacific Northwest, which is to beer what France is to wine. The micro-brew/craft brewing market thrives in our area. All of the draft beers located in the most popular and accessible bars (i.e. deck 9) were lagers. It was only on the last day of the cruise that we discovered 'Diversions' on deck 3 had a Kona Brewing Company Pale Ale on tap. It is our hope that a Northwest/Alaska cruise will feature at least one Northwest craft ale. There are myriad excellent craft breweries in Vancouver, B.C., and in every port of call on the Alaska cruise itinerary. Surely the boat can procure fine beer in the same way it procures fine wine. With a selection of draft craft pale and amber ales available, we would have spent a lot more on adult beverages than we did. - The 'Oceaneer's Lab' had far too many "Open House" periods, where the lab was unsecured. This required unattended kids to go to the 'Oceaneer's Club', which is oriented towards younger children and was considered far-inferior to the "Lab" by our 7 year-old son. It seemed that whenever we had some down-time, or the adults wanted to do something our son found uninteresting, and it otherwise would have been a perfect opportunity for our son to go hang out in the "Lab", there was a conflicting "Open House" requiring rearranging schedules. This is our biggest complaint/observation/issue with the entire cruise, and obviously it isn't that big of a deal. - "Goofy's Pool" is too small. We don't expect this to be an issue on an Alaska cruise, but on a warm-weather cruise, there simply isn't enough room for everyone to find a lounge chair and a space in the pool - particularly when "Mickey's Pool" is closed for cleaning (which happened at least every other day). We realize DCL can't remedy this situation overnight, but we also understand that DCL keeps customer concerns in mind when considering changes to vessels when vessels are periodically updated in dry-dock. - While we're on the subject, a water slide adults can share with their kids would be a huge improvement. It doesn't have to be as elaborate as what is on the 'Dream' and 'Fantasy', but something that lets adults have some fun with their kids is needed. The major compliments: - The superb staff at the 'Guest Services' desk was always able to provide and answer and/or a resolution to any question or problem that arose (except to those aboard complaining how stressful it was to them that we would be docked on the Yucatan Peninsula on 12-21-12, the last day of the Mayan calendar. Umm - check the itinerary before booking the cruise if you don't want to climb Mayan temples on 12-21-12.) - The crew members in `Mickey's Mates' were very helpful with getting fragile items purchased aboard safely packaged for transport home. None of the fragile Christmas ornaments and other items suffered any damage from our long journey home from Miami to Seattle! - 'Cesar', a housekeeping crew member who was often seen keeping the restrooms on deck 9 spotless in spite of the onslaught of dripping-wet/covered in sunscreen passengers parading through the facilities, had a particularly friendly and outgoing personality that deserves recognition. He took time to get to know us as people, not passengers, and we got an opportunity to learn about him and his background and culture. We observe that we learned just as much about the cultures represented by the staff with whom we interacted as we did the cultures of the countries we visited! It all adds up to create a fantastic experience for seven year-old boys and forty-something parents alike! - Michele, our server in Palo, could not have been more charming, friendly, nor possess a more encyclopedic knowledge of the food, wine, and culture of Northern Italy -- precisely what you'd want in your server for an evening at Palo! We were so impressed with Michele -- and with Palo -- that we brought our mothers to brunch at Palo later on in the cruise. We specifically requested Michele as our brunch server, and he did not disappoint! - Clare was a member of the photography crew who always went the extra mile to make us feel comfortable and relaxed as she took stunning photos of us in the chaotic environment that defines a 'Character Appearance'. We were ecstatic to discover she was the photographer assigned to the family portrait area when we arrived to have ours done, and the resulting photos are exquisite! Her personality endeared her to us, and thus our son was totally comfortable as she walked him though the poses -- and the results speak volumes! - Faydella, our 'Stateroom Hostess', was simply amazing! Whatever we needed, whenever we needed it -- sometimes even before we knew we needed it -- somehow magically appeared in our stateroom. Her bright smile and sunny disposition meant our entire passageway was filled with smiles and good cheer. - Finally, our two dining room servers must have come from Disney's central casting. Dan (from Romania) and Anthony (from France) were a comical "Odd Couple" who had us laughing through every meal. We looked forward to finding them doing their other jobs aboard ship, and they went the extra mile to serve us whenever they were working another restaurant or helping out on deck. Much like our stateroom hostess, they provided us with whatever we needed, whenever we needed it -- often before we even knew we even needed it - or wanted it! Their impeccable service, good humor, wit and camaraderie was an invaluable addition to our experience. Their extra-special treatment of our precocious seven year-old son will be remembered by him and by us forever. I was especially impressed with the patience, service, respect, and love they provided to a young special-needs passenger and our table-mate. They both worked incredibly hard, apparently effortlessly and graciously. One had to look hard to find the beads of sweat running down their faces as they strived to provide a personalized fine-dining experience to a demanding clientele in a chaotic environment. We're hard-pressed to come up with anything we would have done differently on the December 9-23 Panama Canal cruise, or that we'll do differently on our August 19-26 Alaska cruise. We'll certainly do a better job of decorating our cabin door next time, and we'll bring that extension cord for charging camera batteries, but our Panama Canal cruise aboard the 'Disney Wonder' is an experience we'll treasure for the rest of our lives! Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
Thought we'd try a cruise for our younger family of four (6 yo and infant). We joined our friends on the Disney Wonder for a 7 day cruise to Mexico. I won't go into the in and outs of cruising as experienced by a first time ... Read More
Thought we'd try a cruise for our younger family of four (6 yo and infant). We joined our friends on the Disney Wonder for a 7 day cruise to Mexico. I won't go into the in and outs of cruising as experienced by a first time cruiser, but the bottom line for us on the last day was what we could have done for the same amount of money and time. We've done a number of all-inclusive and rental suites in the past and it is hard to compare those scenarios with this cruise and not think that we're being seriously gouged for no reason. yes, there's a level of service you get on the boat that you may not get from a resort (but most times we have), but as a family we don't need that. We don't need to dress up for every meal. We don't need fancy meals when we're with our kids and barely have the time or energy to enjoy them. We don't need to be spending $500+ on gratuities for services and drinks at the end of the week. And we certainly don't need the tight schedule required to go all the way south and back in 7 days while still hitting two ports. If you don't think your kids will stay in the kids club for mare than an hour a day, the 4 days at sea will be long, especially if the weather's even a little bit cold/windy. If you take the early seating for dinner the shows are too late for our young ones. The one time we let him stay up for the Toy Story show we payed for it the next day. Our assumption, which was wrong, was that a Disney cruise would be geared towards the younger families. Fancy dinning, turndown service, expensive drinks and photo sessions are not what young families need to relax and have fun. Free babysitting, dinner entertainment/kid help, free 24hr healthy drink alternatives/snacks, mid-day shows while at sea, complimentary coffee that doesn't require loads of milk and sugar to be palatable, these are things a young family wants. All in all we'll skip the family cruises in the future and stick to the single location vacation where we can take our time, keep a regular schedule, and spend money only where we want to. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Wow
How your vacation turns out depends on 2 things: how you plan it, and what YOU make of it. If you do your proper planning/research, and put a little (I mean a LITTLE [it is Disney after all]) effort into having an enjoyable time, you ... Read More
How your vacation turns out depends on 2 things: how you plan it, and what YOU make of it. If you do your proper planning/research, and put a little (I mean a LITTLE [it is Disney after all]) effort into having an enjoyable time, you will. Now for my review: We were scheduled to arrive at the terminal @ 11AM. Our shuttle from the hotel down the street got us there at about 10:15AM. I expected that we would have to wait outside until 11AM. We walked right in, no waiting. Tons of Disney customer service people to direct you where to go. Oh and the porters unloaded our luggage and took it. I tipped him but I saw him give it to a little girl later. (cool gesture I guess, but I probably won't tip again because of it) we didn't see our luggage until around 5PM on the ship. We went upstairs to get in line for registration. We had our docs ready (completed online) so we got in line. There are 2 lines 1 for returning Disney cruisers (us next time) and 1 for 1st time Disney cruisers. We were early enough there was nobody in either line. We walked right up to the counter and were registered within minutes. We were assigned boarding number 5. I asked how many boarding numbers there would be they said "usually around 40". We were one of the first on the ship! We then (at the advice of other review writers) went immediately to register our kids in the kids programs (Oceaneers Club & Lab). No line there either. Wow can't get easier. When they started calling boarding numbers our number was called within 10 minutes. Pretty quick in my opinion. Experience on the ship: I won't bore you with a travel log as some people do. Our experience was fantastic on the ship. Yes, we did feel the boat move. My daughter described it well within an hour of leaving the Port of LA when she said "it feels like I'm on an elevator". Yes it does. At first this is a little disconcerting, but once we figured out what it was we dealt with it. I don't think that I ever "got used to it", but we were able to ignore it in most cases. None of us ever got stomach upset (if you know what I mean) sick, just a little dizzy at times. We tried to experience everything we could aboard the ship, and did get to most of it lol. SPA: The spa however was a major disappointment. The massages were nice, but nothing different than what you can get at any massage place (i.e. Massage Envy). The couples massage (both my wife and I in the same room) was more than 2x the cost of 2 single massages added together. I thought maybe it was because they offered something different like a bottle of cider or wine? NOPE? Then afterword (while you are still only in a robe) they pitch you their other services? I told my wife that was the first time I ever had a sales pitch when I was naked. Tisk Tisk Spa people (sub contractor NOT Disney). SHOWS: The shows were all better than we expected. Go Disney, great job. In Disney Dreams the actor who played Peter Pan had an accident near the end of the show. He got cut on the face. He did excellent ignoring it. My suggestion would be to show up early (theater doors open half hour before performance) and get seating on the isle or in front. Lounges/clubs (Route 66) "Adult" shows were good too. We were hesitant to do these as we are somewhat conservative. Disney regulates this too. They were adult without being trashy. They call it "Disney Dirty" my wife and I had a blast. We also tried to play "Who wants to be a Mouseketeer". We didn't get picked, but was fun to watch. FOOD: First thing I want to say is that EVERYONE is scheduled a Character Breakfast. No one said anything about this on any of the reviews. Your ticket includes this and you are assigned a day and restaurant. See your welcome packet in your room when you get there (cool surprise for us). We choose the second seating (early show was more important to us). Disney did a wonderful job paring our family with another family of 4. We hit it off the first night and ended up spending a lot of time with them (They were our neighbors so good thing). Many people describe the food as average. That is all it is in my opinion, Average. Our servers Noel & Adela were awesome. Interact with your servers (don't be stuffy). They want to have fun too and they will treat you better! when ordering dinner, order as many things that you want. If it comes to you wrong don't be scared to get another one! The rest of the food on the ship was above average. I liked "Pluto's Dog house" I tried everything they served there I liked it all (I loved the fries and chicken fingers) except the Brats. I'm from the midwest and know a brat, those were not brats. We got advise from a friend to bring our own cups for the self-serve soda station (choices limited to Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, HI-C fruit punch/lemonade). Best advice we got. We bought screw on lid-tumblers. Several other people told us that they wished they had done that too. There is a self-serve ice cream station too. I suggest going to the soda station first to get a cup, then put the ice cream in the cup. (You get more than doing the cone thing wink). Characters: There were plenty of opportunities to get whatever pictures that you wanted. Our kids got what they wanted then were disinterested in trying to get more. Lots of opportunities if that is what you are into. No Evil Witch (from Snow White) or Cruella (sp?). Bummer! Port Adventures: We went on 2. One in Puerto Vallarta (we scheduled this ourselves) and one in Cabo (thru Disney) we enjoyed both. We had originally scheduled one for the second day in Cabo, but we canceled it. I'm glad we did. We ended up just walking around Cabo and found our own way to the Beach for free. Port Adventures are hard to come by if you have children under 8. Disney does have them but there aren't many to choose from. Odd & Ends: Tipping: everyone that complains on here talks about the tips! I would hate to serve you if that is how it is. The service is phenomenal and is not part of the cruise price. These people will bend over backward for you if you ask! You should tip and Yes 24 hour customer service for 7 days is expensive. (around $340 family of 4). But you know ahead of time (if you plan correctly) so it shouldn't be a surprise. We felt that some of the people we had deserved more than the suggested tip amount and we tipped accordingly. If your experience is different, go to guest services and change it! (I'm getting off my soap box now) Buena Vista Theater: way cramped. I am not really that tall 6'2", and I was sore after each movie that we watched there. Disney would do well to take a few seats out and give more room. Rotational Dinning: Great concept (different restaurants on different nights same servers), however we got stuck on a bad rotation. We were able to go to all 3 restaurants at least 2 times. Unfortunately, we were assigned Parrot Cay 3 nights (2 times in the first 3 nights). Above that we were told (kind of herded) to go there for lunch on embarkation day, and we were also assigned there for our character breakfast. It left us liking the other 2 restaurants more. We ended up skipping dinner the third night there and ordered room service. Room service was good, but limited in variety. Pools: Kids loved them. Wife and I enjoyed sitting on the deck relaxing while the kids played. If you ask them they would tell you it was a highlight of their trip. Family pool was too small to try in our (my wife & I) opinion. Adults Only area "Quiet Cove": We did not feel the need to search this out. We found other ways to enjoy ourselves when the kids were in the kid programs without having to go there. We went there a couple of times. Kid commotion can be avoided anywhere on the ship, not just in the "Quiet Cove" area. It was definitely quiet and secluded from Kids. There wasn't a whole lot of traffic there even among adults, but there where those who seemed to be there all the time. Oceaneers Lab/Club: These areas are very adequate. Our kids loved going there. The Lab is designed more for kids ages 6-10, and the club was more for 3-6 crowd. The kids (with councilor escort) are free to go between both these programs. The ship has scheduled times designated as "Open House" times were parents are allowed to go in with the kids and participate/watch. Secure check-in (child without parent) is not allowed during this time, but "Open House" only happens at either the Club or Lab. Never both at the same time. If your child is checked into the Lab, then the Lab goes to "Open House" they escort them to the Club during that time and vice versa. Overall, we had a great time. My wife and I were scared that we might be "STUCK" on a boat with everyones bratty childern. We were surprised at the end of the trip that we were not bothered by the number of childern on the ship. In fact the ship only felt crowed on the "Sail Away Party" and the "Pirate" nights when everyone was on deck 9 & 10. I hope this review is helpful to you. Again your vacation is just that YOURS. It will be what you make of it. I wish you the best. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
While this was my second Disney cruise, it was the first for my wife and kids, along with some friends. All total, it was my family of 4, my parents, our friends' family of 4, one set of their parents and a brother for a total of 13. ... Read More
While this was my second Disney cruise, it was the first for my wife and kids, along with some friends. All total, it was my family of 4, my parents, our friends' family of 4, one set of their parents and a brother for a total of 13. Kids were aged 2-5. This cruise on the Disney Wonder started in San Pedro (Los Angeles Port), had a couple days at sea, then a day in Puerto Vallarta, a day and a half in Cabo San Lucas, finishing with a day at sea before returning to Los Angeles. Overall, it was a fabulous cruise. We took up 3 outside view cabins and one inside at the front of the ship. The Good: Service and crowd control. The ship never really felt crowded. Even the really popular events weren't too crowded. Service everywhere was fantastic. I particularly liked how far they went to keep the ship clean. Our servers were adequate. No real complaints, but they didn't particularly stand out either. The assistant server did entertain the kids on occasion, but we never felt any particular special care. I'm a firm believer of set dining times because I like having the same servers. This allows them to recognize my habits. For example, I always have a Coke at my meals. On my other cruises, the servers, after a couple of days or so, figure that out and learn to just have a Coke ready for me when I arrive so I don't have to wait. That's about the minimum I expect in order to rate them outstanding. Never happened here. They were very polite and attentive, just didn't go above the bare minimum that I expect. Our room steward was fantastic though. He would give us special sheets. Some days, it would be Princess sheets for my daughter. Other days, he would use Cars sheets for my son. These special sheets were noticeably softer than the standard bedding too. I also caught him cleaning our room one day. He used a cleaning solution and was wiping down EVERY hard surface you could touch. Places I didn't expect, like the walls, sides of desks, etc. Made me feel really comfortable that I wouldn't catch norovirus. Food was absolutely excellent. My parents had just got back from a 12 Day Celebrity cruise to the Mediterranean (Italy, Greek Islands, Turkey, etc). Celebrity is supposed to be a higher end line, but they said the service and food was far inferior to Disney. My only complaint is that after dinner, your food options basically end. The hot dog and pizzeria shut down around 10 or 11, which is basically when the late seating ends. One night, they did have something from 11 to midnite, but it was a small table about 4' x 2' with leftovers. Even the Pirate Night buffet was just 45 minutes long and ended at 11:15. So, if you're a late night snacker, room service is about your only option. Finally, all the ice cream desserts were amazing. I'm lactose intolerant but still ordered the ice cream sundae dessert with every meal. I tried the others too of course (typically the trio in order to sample more), but they could be hit or miss. The ship itself is starting to feel its age. At night, you can really hear the ship creaking. Also, our toilets only worked about half the time. They were trying to repair something outside of our cabins, but it caused them to constantly shut off the toilets. It bothered our friends' parents more than it did us though. We just closed the lid and when they turned it back on, it would auto flush. We found the front of the ship to be a bit inconvenient. It tended to be far away from most things (only the Disney Theater was close). Next time, I'll pick something midship or at least aft. Still, a big warning: we noticed that around cabin 2590, it was SUPER noisy from the engine or something mechanical. I've fallen asleep in the Tiki Room at Disneyland next to a speaker, but I don't think I could last a week in the cabins around 2590. Other than that, I thought the ship was still beautiful and in pretty good shape. Some of the screen in Animator's Palate were a little off, but still ok overall. We were the first week with the Christmas decorations and it was fabulous. As for the ports themselves, I don't think it's a big deal that Disney is going to stop cruising down the Mexican Riviera. My main complaint is that the cruise ports aren't anywhere near anything. No matter what you want to do, even if it's just shopping, you're going to have to pay someone to drive you out to your desired destination. Puerto Vallarta - Walmart my be seen from the ship, but you have to cross what looks like a freeway to get there. In that heat and humidity? No thank you. Also, the place is pretty run down. Think Tijuana, but a little more run down. We did hire someone to give us a tour of Puerto, and while the beach is pretty nice and the water temperature just about perfect, the place badly needs some sprucing up. A lot of the buildings look like they're about to collapse any second. However, the people there are wonderfully nice. Just some really nice, nice people. I didn't mind having to pay to get anywhere because they were so nice, from our tour guides to the shop people we ran into. Cabo San Lucas - just a constant gauntlet of people pestering you to take a tour or buy something from the second you step off the ship (have to tender in). Not the nicest about it either. Tourist trap all over it. The only way I could ever recommend Cabo to someone is if they stayed at one of those all inclusive resorts and never left the resort. I really dislike this place, despite it being very, very beautiful. Lover's Beach was wonderful. The weather and water temperature literally were perfect. When you got out of the ocean, you didn't notice the water because the air and water were basically the same temperature. The sand was very fine and soft and there are huge rock formations providing a ton of shade if you want it. Also, there's sea life you can see around the smaller rocks, like crabs and sea snails. Our last day, we were apparently racing to get back to port. There were also two storm front colliding on us. Since the Wonder is a smaller ship (80,000 tons or so), we were tossed like a little toy boat. We were fine until this day, in which we needed the patches and still felt queasy. People were throwing up in the aisles during the show. Oh, I forgot to mention the shows. Fantastic. You can clearly tell that Disney hired experienced Broadway people to help develop these shows. I don't think I've been on another line with a better collection of shows. I was worried my kids wouldn't like them because they're a bit young, but they absolutely loved them. The Walt Disney theater, which usually hosts the live shows, can also show 3D movies (Wreck It Ralph on ours). The Buena Vista Theater is where the movies are typically shown. Disney gives you the nice 3D glasses too. If you have little kids, you can ask the ushers for the green ones, which are more kid sized. All in all, a wonderful cruise that met my already high expectations (my first Disney cruise was my favorite). If I ever did this again, I'd likely just stay on the ship except for maybe a few hours at Lover's Beach in Cabo. My son is already asking when we can go on another cruise. Next time, it'll be on the Fantasy or the Dream. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
This is our 10th cruise but first on Disney, overall I would rate the cruise a B+ there were many pros and few cons. I will highlight them in the review. We do not have kids and at first was concerned about all the children on board ... Read More
This is our 10th cruise but first on Disney, overall I would rate the cruise a B+ there were many pros and few cons. I will highlight them in the review. We do not have kids and at first was concerned about all the children on board however it was not bad at all. Children normally would be seen in large numbers when it came time for character pictures. Daily they would have scheduled character photos and hundreds of kids with their parents would line up. I liked this photo opportunity however the downside was it was always at the wrong times. It was scheduled many times at 5:30pm and the first sit down dinner was at 5:45pm with the large lines we'd never make dinner. The second photo opportunity would come at 7:30pm and the nightly show would start at 8pm, again if we wanted to wait in long lines we'd miss a good chunk of the entertainment. So we did not get a chance to take many photos with the characters here only once did we get a chance to see Mike and Sully from "Monsters" and took a photos with them. I do want to mention that Disney does schedule a character breakfast which is great, you sit and wait for: Mickey, Mini, Goofy, Pluto, Chip and Dale to arrive at your table and they will use your personal cameras to take photos of you and all these characters. We took advantage of this and had a lot of fun. We had in inside cabin 6053 and it was a sideways cabin, very spacious and great layout, perfect floor. Largest inside cabin compared to Royal, Princess, Holland, and Carnival. The cabin had a full coach not a love seat, plenty of storage and a large closet as well as a desk and bench. I loved this cabin, there was only one downfall to the cabin which was the bathroom. It was the smallest we'd ever seen; in order to use the toilet or shower we had to shut the door. The only nice thing about the small bathroom is it had a tub. The staff was very friendly; our room steward was very nice as well as our waiter and his assistant. However this is the first cruise where they never addressed us by our name. They would always say sir or maam. This may seem like a small point however in our previous 9 cruises the room steward along with the waiter would always call us by our name. Food and Beverage: The food on this Disney cruise was not that good. Compared to previous cruises I would rate it the lowest for food quality. The menu choices were poor and the flavor and taste lacked flavor. Sit down lunch was better because there were less people and the food was cooked to order for a smaller crowd. The soft drinks such as lemonade, ice tea and soda were all free which is a nice treat if you are a soda drinker. Warning...if you are a coffee drinker do not drink the coffee on deck 9 that is Nescafe liquid coffee it is not brewed, the coffee is already in liquid form and in a box inserted in the machine, it tastes awful. For a good cup of coffee you need to order it in the dining room or room service. If you want to spend money at the Cafe it's the same price as Starbucks and tastes similar. Again if you want a good cup of coffee just wait till sit down breakfast, lunch or dinner to order one. We did eat at "Palo" their specialty restaurant and the food was much better than the dining room, however I would not recommend spending the extra $20pp because this is the type of food quality we normally would receive in the sit down dining room on other cruise lines. However I would like to mention we did go to "Palo" brunch which is available on sea days and this was well worth the $20pp fee. You do receive one free mimosa and refills will cost you extra. They had Alaskan king crab as well as snow crab and other numerous items. There were so many different food choices, and very tasty. I would like to acknowledge that the gym on board is smaller than what I'm use to however it worked well for us since many mornings the gym only had 6-8 people in there. I did like their shower and dressing areas right near the gym room the decor is orange (something out of the 70's) but they have good products for lotions, soap and cleanser they use Elemis which is very good. The dress attire on Disney is very casual again not what I'm used to but that I can easily adapt to. The nice part about being so casual is if you're coming back from an excursion you don't have to rush to change your clothes to eat in the dining room. On formal night I did see a handful of men in tuxedos, maybe about 5 or so, most men wore dark suits. Woman had cocktail dresses and some gowns. Everyone who ate in the dining room looked very elegant. Disney's Entertainment was very good their shows were not boring and kept our attention the entire time. They were not too long or too short, their Toy Story show was excellent and probably one of the best show's I've seen at sea. They offered new movies to view in their move theater such as "Frankenweenie" that was a nice treat since that just came out in the theaters at home. The movie theater is big and can seat a few hundred people however if your tall and have long legs the aisles are cramped and most likely your knees will hit the seat in front of you. The Pirate night theme which was held on Friday night was great, many passengers got all dressed up in their pirate attire (us included) and then the deck party and fireworks at 10:15pm which were amazing. Immediately following was a buffet with large turkey legs and deserts. Our port of calls were San Francisco which we spent two days there, the weather was perfect. We sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge at 6:45am and it was a clear morning, a bit chilly about 60 degrees or so but it warmed up nicely to about 80 degrees later that day. We were able to spend the day site seeing with a friend of ours who lives there and she was able to drive us around all the scenic areas. On day two of San Francisco we took an Alcatraz tour which was a great experience and after spending ½ day there we walked around Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39. San Diego was a full day in port we've visited several times before and decided to tour the USS Maritime which was docked next door and only a block walk. Great experience touring that massive ship it takes about 2-3 hours to tour depending on how much you want to see. Ensenada, we did their City tour and visited two wineries in town, not much really to see but we were able to taste test some wines and then spend 1.5 hrs in the city shopping. If you are looking to do laundry on the ship there are three different laundry facilities there are at least 5 washers/dryers on deck 6, other decks that have laundry facilities have more. There were several washers that were broken during the week so it made it harder for others to do their wash. Disney only charges $1.00 to wash, $1.00 to dry and $1.00 if you need soap. Great deal, no need to bring quarters it all gets charged to your cabin. Overall I did enjoy this cruise; there were a few downsides such as the coffee and food which was not enjoyable. Would I sail Disney again, probably not the Wonder...but maybe I would try the newer ship "Fantasy". Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
I had such a good time on the Disney Wonder I don't know where to begin. We took the Pacific Coast Cruise which I felt was a good start for a first time cruiser like myself and my husband. We were traveling with our two year old. ... Read More
I had such a good time on the Disney Wonder I don't know where to begin. We took the Pacific Coast Cruise which I felt was a good start for a first time cruiser like myself and my husband. We were traveling with our two year old. I was amazed at the detail of the decoration of the ship, it amazing. Our stateroom was spacious, and it was nice to have a curtain that separated our room from our daughter's room. The food was very good, we enjoyed every meal. One thing that I wish I could have done differently-it would have been nice to have the itineraries with the activities ahead of time. I had no idea on how to schedule the babysitting time, so I picked random hours here and there. Our daughter had a great time in the Flounder's Reef Nursery, but if I could have done things differently, I would have spent my days with her, and then at dinnertime, put her in the nursery so I could eat in peace. A two year old is not capable of sitting through a two hour meal, and it makes a very stressful situation. It got so bad at one point that my daughter was on my lap, crying, tugging at my breast and I couldn't eat my food. My waiter came over, and offered to cut my meat for me so I could finish my meal. I cried at the kindness he showed me, I was so stressed out and my husband was oblivious to my plight. From that moment, it was a turning point for me. I was hooked. We went to all of the shows, enjoyed the pools, enjoyed the gym and the adult area. The adult bar area was dead most of the time, but it was ok with us since we were traveling with a small child. In retrospect, I should have picked the later seating for dinner. It was too hard getting ready for the 5:45 dinner time, it seemed like we just got the day started and then it was time to eat dinner. The Ports of Call-not so good. Los Angeles-San Francisco, San Diego and Ensenada. I think this was done backward. It was freezing cold in San Francisco and we were there for two entire days. It should have been San Francisco-Los Angeles-San Diego-Ensenada. I would have been fine with one day in SF, one day in LA, two days in San Diego, and one day in Ensenada. Maybe cold-to warm-to warmer-to hot. I was miserable those cold days at sea and in cold San Francisco. My mood lightened the moment we arrived in Sunny San Diego. I preferred being on the ship, and there was a lot for us to get into. If not, I would have really of been disappointed. Overall, I would rate this trip 4 out of 5 stars. Service was top notch, entertainment was top notch, food was great, and amenities of the ship were great. Ports of call-eh...I would pass. Just booked my next cruise for next year on the Disney Fantasy. Now I know how a cruise works, I know exactly what I want to do and how I want to do it. Disney-you made a believer out of me!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
This was our first Disney Cruise and it won't be our last. We sailed up the California coast from LA to San Fransisco, down to San Diego and Ensenada Mexico and back to LA. We loved the cruise....staff was superb, food excellent and ... Read More
This was our first Disney Cruise and it won't be our last. We sailed up the California coast from LA to San Fransisco, down to San Diego and Ensenada Mexico and back to LA. We loved the cruise....staff was superb, food excellent and the entertainment was over the top. The boat has signs all around to tell you how to get there. I was amazed since I'm directionally challenged and it takes til day 7 for me to realize where I am and where I'm going. Embarkation was fast and painless and so was debarkation. If I ask for something, I got it, i.e., there are no robes supplied and we wear them to and from the pool and hot tub...got them within 45 minutes. Ice was in our room twice a day after it was requested once. Meals were fun as well as delicious. We had no children with us and found plenty to do for adults. The only time we really saw a lot of children was at embarkation and debarkation. We only found one draw back. The bathrooms...there were two. One had a tub shower combo and a sink. The other had a sink and commode. I was continually going from one to another getting something...if I were designing it I would have left out the tub, combined both rooms and had 2 sinks. The tub was so small I couldn't have lain in it and I'm 5' 1".....seemed made for a child or baby. I would do it again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
We recently took the special Pixar sailing of the Disney Wonder along the California Coast. The entertainment and kids's programs were wonderful but that's about where the fun ended. The food was hardly edible, unless you ... Read More
We recently took the special Pixar sailing of the Disney Wonder along the California Coast. The entertainment and kids's programs were wonderful but that's about where the fun ended. The food was hardly edible, unless you like chicken strips and pizza every meal. Every night, we would have to wait for our main course at dinner until our dining companions (after arriving 45 minutes late for seating) had ordered and gotten through their first and second courses. Character interactions were great but unfortunately wasted a lot of time waiting in line to see them. Production shows were top-notch. Oceaneer's Club and Oceaneer's Lab were both fantastic. Cabins were comfy. Did not care for the split bathroom concept. They were even tight for my child to maneuver. Cabin steward was good but VERY slow. Room was not serviced until after 1:00 each afternoon and then again at 10:15 at night. Our almost six-year-old daughter had a great time but was ready to come home by day five. She told us she'd rather go back to Princess next time. I would say give it a try once for the experience but wasn't for us. :( Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
We had an absolutely amazing time. The service was outstanding - I kept having to tell the waiter not to cut up my children's food. The kids kept begging to go back to the kids club because they were having so much fun. They mostly ... Read More
We had an absolutely amazing time. The service was outstanding - I kept having to tell the waiter not to cut up my children's food. The kids kept begging to go back to the kids club because they were having so much fun. They mostly went to the oceaneer club (awesome slide/treehouse play area) but went to the oceaneer lab if there were any particular events they wanted to do there. My daughter (age 3) loved seeing the princesses - make sure to sign up early at guest services for the princess tea (free) if you want to go - tickets run out fast but some people got in on standby as well for no-shows. Several times we were walking around the ship and we would turn a corner and randomly run into a character. If you are on the ship on a port day, take advantage of the mostly empty ship to see characters if they are available - there was virtually no lines to see the princesses on the day we were in Victoria - the princesses were wandering around trying to find kids to talk to. They had a great show at the end where the kids got up on stage and sang and danced with mickey and minnie for the parents. The weather wasn't great so we only used the pools on the first day in port in LA. I get motion sick easily but only got sick once on the one really rough day at sea. After the first day we didn't really notice the motion of the boat. We got first seating (watch out if you are booking online - it automatically puts you in the second seating so you have to change it if you want the first), which was nice since it was closer to the kids' normal dinner time, but irrelevant for bedtimes since the show is afterwards (vice versa for second seating). We never had any real problems getting seats for the shows (which were fantastic and the kids loved them - they put the shows live on the stateroom TVs if you can't make it to one, but it really doesn't compare to going). We didn't usually arrive until right before showtime but there were always seats left near the front left - an angled view, but it was close up for the kids to see and we were close enough to have the glitter/streamers/bubbles/snow fall on us. If you have mobility issues, make sure to go through Cadillac lounge to get to the show - my mom sprained her replaced knee right before the trip and was in a wheelchair then used a cane but we didn't know about the secret entry until the last show (you can't use it with a wheelchair but if you can walk down a short hallway then they will take you though the door near the stage). We didn't do much for excursions. My husband and son rode the cable cars in San Fransisco, we skipped Victoria and we met up with friends to go to the Vancouver Aquarium (not an advertised excursion so few people knew about it but it is only a 10 minute cab ride from port). We had a great time - we did a week in Disneyland first and actually enjoyed the cruise even more than Disneyland. We can't wait to go again! Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
I had originally booked a Christmas Cruise and was later informed it was cancelled and not given a reason. Booking a year in advance I was excited to get a great deal but when it was cancelled told I had to pay the price it had increased ... Read More
I had originally booked a Christmas Cruise and was later informed it was cancelled and not given a reason. Booking a year in advance I was excited to get a great deal but when it was cancelled told I had to pay the price it had increased to when they cancelled - NOT when I placed my deposit. Things went down from there. Trip was on and off again, but my travel agent equally frustrated with the cruise line gave me her commission to make things work for me. On board I got the handicapped room which was roomy - although nothing special. Often went to the spa to get better water pressure. The room creaked so much at night you could hardly sleep and I awoke several times when the bathroom door kept opening and slamming until furniture was placed in from of it. Food was wonderful. Small portions for kids, but that's okay. Ate a few meals in the Pala which was well worth the extra $15. High tea also lovely. Couldn't make any reservations online, but found many things available once on board. Same with salon. Better deals too to purchase once on board. My daughters got a pedicure and for $70 returned with smeared polish and said their lady complained a lot about "having a bad day" and "not really into it". I spoke to the manager and they each had their nails redone while I cancelled my pedicure. Wish I had done that with my facial. No steam, massage, or anything extra. I could of washed my face and gotten same result and saved over $120. Steam rooms were great and I spent lots of time there. Fitness area had workshops that had you sit for an hour only to get a marketing rip-off advertisement at the end. Couldn't believe Disney was actually saying they had a magic pill only they sold that solved detox issues. Didn't even show us the pill or anything and yet the trainer insisted they were upfront at the beginning about what they were selling. Family games also overpriced. $40 to play 4 games of Bingo - really? Charges for the arcade, and pool so overcrowded my girls never got to go. They were too tall for kiddy slide and too young for adult pool. No teen activities that interested them. Went to decorate a t-shirt only to learn it was a 6inch foam cut-out - not even a real t-shirt! Excursions were overpriced too and my friend booked herself and we got better and cheaper that way. The Pirate Cruise was so crowded and the food was poor. We had use of a small portion of the beach and kids stood in long lines to kayak and go on banana boat which was blown up once there. I met many that had done this cruise several times, and I don't get it. I'd rather go to Club Med where I'm treated better my kids are entertained all day and I never have to get out my wallet the entire week. I felt after being overcharged at the beginning was bad enough, but to be constantly hounded for more money for drinks, kids entertainment, family games, use of steam rooms at spa and etc. that I had wished I'd done the Carnvial for half the price. The shows were great, but moms would save rows of seats and despite coming early to be seated, I found myself in a desperate search to sit with my girls only to be kicked and have food thrown at me by kids from behind. A lady next to me requested 4 times from a father to stop the kicking/food throwing and he just laughed. Although announcements made to not save seats, it was allowed. No management enforcement - too concerned using people to sell over-priced drinks in theatre. Money, money, money. Don't think this is what Walt had in mind. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
This was our first cruise. We traveled beginning April 1st-8th! We were expecting to have fun....but Disney exceeded our expectations! We have two children ages 7 and 8 and they loved it!!! The positives were the itinerary that was ... Read More
This was our first cruise. We traveled beginning April 1st-8th! We were expecting to have fun....but Disney exceeded our expectations! We have two children ages 7 and 8 and they loved it!!! The positives were the itinerary that was filled with dozens of activities for the whole family, the entertainment, and the service. Our dinner experience was fabulous, as your servers (all three!) follow you from restaurant to restaurant! You visit one of three each night (which all host a different theme). Our servers were amazing, as we have a child with a food allergy. They made him special food, and remembered our drinks each night. My soda was on the table before I even sat down.... The entertainment was Disney Magic all the way! Fireworks and all! The celebration as you leave the Port of Los Angeles is amazing! You really feel like you are going on vacation. Disney is about having a fabulous experience. The shows were truly good enough to be on Broadway. The kids had a million things to choose from--and the movies were fantastic as well! The service was wonderful--from our servers at dinner, to our stateroom host that cleaned our room twice a day! My kids loved to come and see what towel animal he made each night. There is an ice cream machine and ALL the free soda you can drink day and night! My kids probably had 30 ice cream cones this week! The deck parties were the best ever!! Don't miss a single show or a single deck party--it really adds to the experience. Additionally--the characters were so accessible all week--Tiana, Belle, Snow White and Cinderella are the princesses on this cruise--Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, Daisy,Pluto, Chip and Dale, and Captain Hook are readily available for photos and signatures....way easier than Disneyland for sure! My husband and 8 year old son enjoyed playing basketball and soccer each night before bed, and my daughter and I loved the princess tea (which you have to sign up for the first day at guest services or you won't get in!) Oh and get to the ship early because while you are waiting to board Mickey and Minnie are there to take photos with your family and you can sign your kids up for the kids club before you even board the ship! It makes the waiting fun. When you board the ship they welcome you by name over the loudspeaker! It's a fun way to start your trip. As with any good thing there are some negatives (though I'd do this cruise a dozen times even with the negatives). The stateroom we had was noisy, noisy, noisy....there was a constant clatter in the ceiling that woke us up several times a night. We traveled with several other families and they ALL had the same experience--and we were on different floors in different stateroom levels as well. This was very annoying considering we had a hard time staying asleep because it was REALLY noisy. Some other minor negatives were: The food in the evening was just o.k. The selection was very good, but it didn't taste great. The Beach Blanket Buffet was great though--both in variety and in taste. The final negative were the pools. They were crowded and kind of small for such a big ship. My kids still had fun, but they could have been a little larger. But, the noisy stateroom was by far the most difficult part of the trip! It was the worst when it was windy! Even with the negatives it was the best family vacation ever and we go on quite a few different kinds of vacations! Hope you have fun on your adventure..... Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
Did 7 day Mexican Riviera on the Wonder departed 8April2012. Activities are incredible for the kids and decent for adults. Was in a deluxe stateroom which has plenty of room for my wife and 2 kids, age 5 and 7. No need for extra storage ... Read More
Did 7 day Mexican Riviera on the Wonder departed 8April2012. Activities are incredible for the kids and decent for adults. Was in a deluxe stateroom which has plenty of room for my wife and 2 kids, age 5 and 7. No need for extra storage at all - talk of over the door shoe hangars for storage seems overblown - we didn't use anywhere near all the drawers or hangars provided. Food was just so-so. Pretty much what I expected - kids loved all the free pizza and ice cream but for adults it's pretty mediocre. You can bring alcohol on board easily - they didn't check bags or really pay attention to the size of the rollaboard. I wish we had brought some beer since the room has a fridge. Wine charge of $20 to bring your own wine. Laundry is available using your key card - no need to bring quarters. No ATM on board so get some cash ahead of time. One thing I wish we would have done is the Princess Tea Party - there are only two times and they fill up fast on the first day. If you get on board after 3pm you have no chance (we live local and didn't come on board until 330 and they were all filled). Otherwise no need to sign up for anything ahead of time. Spa was not good, wife had one service and it was pretty bad. They do offer specials during in port days but the spa is right below the basketball and sports courts so it's noisy all the time and the services are just not good. Overall tho a wonderful experience. Room 1032 was a good room except for the noise on day 2 in Cabo when they pull in to port very early and set up for tenders around 630am. Entire cruise boat is extremely clean. mickey pool was never closed during our entire cruise - no idea what this talk of poop in the pool is all about. Last day, cruising north to LA is typically cool, as ours was, and outside pools are too useful. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
We took our 4th Disney Cruise to the Mexican Riviera during Spring Break. This was our 4th trip on the Wonder, so we were very familiar with the ship. In fact, sailing on the Wonder feels like we're at our vacation "home." ... Read More
We took our 4th Disney Cruise to the Mexican Riviera during Spring Break. This was our 4th trip on the Wonder, so we were very familiar with the ship. In fact, sailing on the Wonder feels like we're at our vacation "home." Dining: Our waiters were great! They interacted with our 10 yr old son and the other children at our table. They remembered not only our drink orders each night, but also our preferences. For example, as a Texas girl, I don't like my steak smothered in sauces, so my sauce was always on the side. My son was always anxious to get back to the Oceaneer Lab and missed dessert each night, so our waiter assembled a plate of cookies and milk for him to enjoy in our cabin later in the evening. He even remembered to send chocolate chip and not oatmeal raisin cookies! Since this was our 4th cruise with Disney, we've made some observations. First, the quality of the waiter is not a direct reflection on the cruise, but on the waiter and if you're not getting the service you believe you should, this should be taken up with the head waiter immediately. Our servers on our 2011 Alaska cruise were not up to par and we should have said something. Second, this cruise was the first one that we've had the first dining time and we noticed a huge improvement in the qualify of the food in the main dining rooms as well as how quickly we received our meals. The first 3 cruises we requested 2nd seating and dinner took 2+ hours. This allows for a more leisurely meal. The food was never that fantastic but we couldn't put our finger on the reason. This time we requested first seating and there was a 110% improvement in the food and the speed to the food getting to the table. We ate the same food we had had on previous cruises expecting a certain flavor/texture, but it was much much better this time. We truly believe the food must be getting "held over" for the second dining and is not as fresh. We're requested 1st seating on our Nov 2012 Western Caribbean and our 2013 LA to Vancouver cruises! Cabin: We had a wonderful stateroom host who ensured our room was always clean and neat! We noticed a couple changes to the room. The have added Velcro to the sliding closet doors so they no longer move back and forth with the movement of the ship. A down side is that one of my nice blouses kept getting stuck to the Velcro. I wish they would have put that up high or down low on the door, but not at hanger level. They've replaced the old bedspreads with the new duvets (I think the same ones used on the new ships.) And, during our cruise to Alaska in 2011, we noticed they changed the clocks in the room to one you can actually see in the middle of the night. The only down side is the clock is entirely too bright. The first night of our cruise, our cabin had unusually LOUD creaking noise and resulted in very little sleep for my husband and I. We mentioned this to our cabin maid first thing and he said he reported it. (He was fantastic all week, so we don't doubt that he did indeed report the issue.) However, when we were in our room getting ready for dinner that night it was obvious the noise had not be resolved. One brief stop to the front desk, and all of a sudden we had the Head Engineer in our room placing little wedges around our room between the ceiling and the wall. Surprisingly this pretty much fixed the issue. They also sent up ear plugs to our room just in case, and asked us to tell them right away if the issue persisted or if we had any other issues during our stay. We received several follow up calls asking if the noise was ok, and they sent chocolate covered strawberries to our room and gave our son a $15 gift card to be used in the arcade to help make up for our first night without sleep. I learned two things here. One, tell the front desk. They know who to call to get quick resolution. Two, Disney does a great job at trying to make a situation "right". Consistency: We chose Disney for our cruises because we've had some fantastic cruises and each cruise has been consistently great. However, Disney does not make any real changes in their programming from year to year. In other words, the Disney Broadway shows on this last cruise were the same ones that were on the other 3 cruises, dating back to our first cruise in 2008. So, we tend to skip the shows every other cruise. this is the same thing with the game shows. We love "Who Wants to Be A Mouseketeer" and "Mickey Mania" but we'd like to see some new game shows and other entertainment. Our son has been in the same kids club since 2008 (he was 6, now he's 10)and he's made Flubber, cookies in the Ratatouille Cooking School, and solved cases in the Goofy Files 4 times now. He needs some new programming. Oceaneer Lab: Some of the counselors remembered our son from our Alaska cruise last year and he made some new counselor friends as well, which he enjoyed. However, now Disney does not segregate the Club from the Lab and so there's very small kids (4 yr olds) in the Lab, which goes through age 11. My son was not interested in several activities because the children participating were so young. He didn't even want to play the Wii because the boys playing were so young. He didn't feel it would be fair to the little ones so he spent lots of time visiting with the counselors and using the computers for individual games. Not exactly what we're paying for when we book a Disney cruise for our son. This huge age range needs to be whittled down, or let the older kids go into Tween club. Ports: Our ports were Cabo and Puerto Vallarta. We booked excursions at both ports, although we did not enjoy these ports like others we've been too and were disappointed in Disney choosing these. We especially didn't enjoy the tendering at Cabo and can't imagine how scary it would have if we would have had small children with us. Embarkation: This was our first time to ever arrive before noon but we were excited to get there this time to get on the ship early. We had to wait and got on around 1pm which wasn't too bad. It was nice to get on and have time to eat leisurely without rushing to finish in time for the safety drill. Right after eating, our son had his swim suit in his day bag, so he hit the pool! Debarkation: This process we found to be very smooth on our cruises out of Port Canaveral since our bags "magically" went from the hallway the night before all the way to Dallas without us having to touch them. However, this was a complete nightmare in Vancouver last year where we had to WAITE for our bags to be taken off the ship and then FIND them at the port, take them through customs, etc. So, this year we did something different. Our suitcases are large rolling bags, so we decided to NOT put them out the night before and take them off with us. That way we also didn't have to wait until our turn to get off the ship. This was AMAZINGLY smooth and will be our choice going forward if we are not at Port Canaveral. Aging Ship: Yes, the ship is aging, needs dry dock time, and overall upgrades. However, through out the week we did notice workers repairing sections of carpeting, painting etc., so they are trying to keep the ship in good repair. This is not to ignore the fact that the bathrooms do need new tiling and paint, the sleeper sofas should be replaced, etc. I assume all of this will be accomplished in the next dry dock and none of this diminished the enjoyment our our cruise in any way. Read Less
Sail Date March 2012
My husband and I are both teachers so our only time to cruise is during winter, spring or summer breaks. As we live in the Northwest, by the time January hits, our theme for the past three years has been... "Okay, where should we ... Read More
My husband and I are both teachers so our only time to cruise is during winter, spring or summer breaks. As we live in the Northwest, by the time January hits, our theme for the past three years has been... "Okay, where should we cruise for spring break?" The year before we sailed the Mexican Riviera on Holland America and had an experience that nearly kept us from cruising for good. However, I had been on a Disney cruise ten years prior and had an amazing experience with my family, so once 2012 started, my DH and I decided to give cruising a go one more time. If we hated our experience with Disney, we vowed we'd never be back. A lot of people gave us raised eyebrows when we said that we would be sailing on a Disney cruise during spring break (especially since we are around kids all the time with our jobs but we don't have kids ourselves). However, Disney did such a great job of intentionally creating specific areas for kids, teens and even babies to be during the day so adults could have their own time. Quite frankly, being around families warmed my heart because it showed my DH and I what our future vacations may possibly look like some day. Disney's productions at sea are out of this world. Twice I found myself tearing up because they were so beautiful and really communicated that special Disney magic. Our service was phenomenal and we loved our servers each night as we rotated through various dining rooms (a nice Disney touch). We also appreciated being paired at a table with three other couples in our same age/life demographics-- no kids at the table! We have stayed very close friends with a couple we met at our table and have even planned upcoming vacations with them and joined them recently on a trip to Disneyland. Friendships on this cruise are definitely encouraged! One of the highlights of our cruise was eating at Palo. We ate there for an incredible dinner and a mind-blowing brunch. We definitely rolled out of there and had to nap afterwards-- the food was beyond our expectations! I would definitely eat there as much as I could in the future. We had a wonderful room in a great location. We loved drinking wine and reading on our patio at night. We also thought all of the food on the ship was great (except breakfast-- we never could find a good breakfast. Oh well.). The ONLY thing I would complain about with Disney is the price. It's Disney-- what would you expect? You pay for the Disney experience and because the experience is so good, it keeps families coming back for me. I would absolutely do another Disney cruise in the future, especially when we have kids, however, we have found better cruise deals on some other really strong cruise lines and have decided to give them a shot so we don't feel like we have to penny pinch on our cruise like we did with Disney. We are getting a comparable room, cruise and itinerary for about $1,000 less. Read Less
Sail Date March 2012
This was our first cruise EVER and first time with Disney. Took our almost 2 year old daughter with us. Everything was great, although the weather did not cooperate and it was overcast/cloudy 5 of the 7 days we sailed to Puerto ... Read More
This was our first cruise EVER and first time with Disney. Took our almost 2 year old daughter with us. Everything was great, although the weather did not cooperate and it was overcast/cloudy 5 of the 7 days we sailed to Puerto Vallarta/Los Cabos (Feb. 12-19, 2012) but that is not Disney's fault. 5 biggest complaints: 1) Not very easy access to water and soft drinks. LONG lines during the day and in the evenings people were filling up their 1-2 litre water bottles which took FOREVER. Either hire more help during the day and evenings, or let us fill it up ourselves or offer it as an option for room service. 2.) Room service could have some more variety. A full breakfast for our room on deck 6 would have been nice, you only offer hot breakfast for decks 8 or 9 and make it seem as though we are 3rd class passengers even though we paid beaucoup bucks for a room with a verandah. 3.) Buffet was NEVER OPEN whenever we wanted to dine there. My toddler did not want to sit down for a 2 hour meal, buffet should be a buffet, open at least till midnight and be run buffet-style. The one time we dined there for dinner it was still menu-style ordering and the service was SLOW and awful. The waiter forgot to put in our appetizers. 4.) More swimming pool options for toddlers age. Because my daughter was not fully potty-trained, she was only allowed in the Mickey's ears (which you later shut down because of an accident) and the splash zone. One of the biggest reasons we booked your cruise was her to swim. She has been in swimming lessons since 4 months old and dives under water and is starting to float/swim. My husband wanted to take her to deeper pools. 5.) Daughter got sick at daycare at Flounder's Reef. You need to keep kids with runny noses and colds OUT. That is about it. Thanks! Read Less
Sail Date February 2012
Just returned back to cold old Canada after spending 7 nights aboard the awesome Disney Wonder. Just to start off with, the following review is our own personal family review of what we as a family of 3 thought about our experience. Your ... Read More
Just returned back to cold old Canada after spending 7 nights aboard the awesome Disney Wonder. Just to start off with, the following review is our own personal family review of what we as a family of 3 thought about our experience. Your experience will be the same, better, worse....whatever it is it is your experience as this was ours.....so take this for what it is worth. We are a small family originally from Australia but now living in Canada. We booked a 7 night MR cruise on the Disney Wonder, Feb 5th-12th out of San Pedro, CA. This was our daughters 8th birthday celebration and we booked through the Disney cruise line website. The booking was seamless and Disney was awesome. Our trip was truly one of the most exciting, wonderful, enjoying and fulfilling vacations we have experienced. The check in and boarding was easy, smooth and without fuss. The ship is truly magnificent and as this was our first time on a Disney ship we were awestruck (have cruised to Alaska with NCL in 2009) No amount of reviews and forums could prepare us for the unbridled service that we experienced. We were treated like royalty the entire trip, from guest services to food servers to room attendants to character interactions....if you are looking for an experience not to be forgotten then a Disney cruise is it. Make no mistake we are not hard people to please but Disney truly exceeded anything we could imagine. The food was truly stupendous. I have read lots of reviews and took most of it with a grain of salt (no pun intended) we loved the food and truly were completely done by the end! Menus/options/buffet/fine dining/room service the Wonder had it all. Great shows, awesome pools, wonderful kids club, great port adventures....Puerto Vallarta was just OK....but Cabo San Lucas was awesome. We saw whales, dolphins, seals....and actually took photos of blue whales from our navigators verandah. Our daughter loved being sung happy birthday by our serving team (who were truly awesome) she also loved the kids activities/pools/character interactions/pirate party/ and the fireworks...but most of all she loved the towel animals our room steward made every night for her. We made new lifelong friends, were treated like royalty and would do this again in a heartbeat....we cannot speak highly enough of this trip.....do yourself and your family a favor..get rid of your phone, your stressful job, crappy weather and take advantage of a Disney cruise and just go with it! Read Less
Sail Date February 2012
First off, I have to say that before we went on our cruise this past February, I came on this site numerous times and read the reviews for the Mexican Riveria cruise on the Disney Wonder that we were going to take. I was petrified after ... Read More
First off, I have to say that before we went on our cruise this past February, I came on this site numerous times and read the reviews for the Mexican Riveria cruise on the Disney Wonder that we were going to take. I was petrified after reading all of the negatives and talked with my husband about the possibility of canceling but we had a great deal and decided to do it and chalk it up to a learning experience. I don't know what these people are reviewing or what they are expecting but we had a wonderful time and didn't see ANY of the negatives that these people have claimed "ruined" their vacation. Embarkation is a nightmare but it is probably that way for every cruise line. With that many people getting on a ship, you're going to have some chaos. Our travel agent really didn't tell me that I needed to choose a time to embark so I was a bit late on that one and got the 1:00-1:30 time but even with that time, we didn't get on the ship for another hour. Our kids are older (10 and 12) so this delay wasn't a big deal. They just sat down and played with their DS. I think with younger kids it would be a bit harder but just keep in mind, that it will be some time before you get on the ship and there is not enough seating for everyone so many people sat on the floor. You could definitely tell who had better attitudes than others from that alone but I digress. I wasn't expecting much from the ship since quite a few reviewers were indicating that it is old and run-down. After being on the ship myself for 7 nights, I honestly have no idea what these people are talking about. I never saw anything broken and nothing looked old. There were employees cleaning the ship constantly--in the halls by the rooms, by the elevators, etc. The pools are a joke but we knew that before going on the cruise since we have talked with many friends who have cruised (on all different cruise lines) and they all told us the same thing--you don't go on a cruise to swim. If you want to swim, book an excursion that allows you to do so. They are very small pools and once my son and I walked by and he said, "Mom, can I go swimming?" I looked over at the pool and saw about 30 people just standing in the pool, packed like sardines. Didn't look like much fun to me so needless to say, he didn't go swimming. He is scuba-certified though and I knew that he and my husband had booked excursions to scuba in Puerto Vallarta and Cabo so I wasn't really concerned about him not being able to swim on the ship. We thought the food was just fine. Our kids are picky eaters and they seemed to have no trouble finding stuff to eat. The cruise motto was "If you see it, eat it!" We had room service, which was fast and yummy, as well as free, except for the tip. I had a Palo reservation but it was for the night of the pirate party so I canceled before we left for the cruise. The menu choices at dinner are amazing. They have something for everyone--vegetarian, seafood, pasta, beef and so on. Some nights I was in the mood for a steak and others I was in the mood for something lighter, like a salad. We also really liked the 3 other places we could eat other than the restaurants and the buffet. I think they were Pluto's, Pinocchio's, and something else. The one that I can't remember the name opened early and had pastries, yogurt, etc. It was a nice place to grab something quick before early morning excursions or just to take a morning walk around the ship. They were very quick in giving food to everyone so there was hardly any waiting at these places. The ice cream was so yummy and my kids loved the soft drink area. We had wonderful service here. I'm not naive. There were a few people that were not very friendly but our room steward and all of the other ones on our deck were so friendly. Every time we walked by, they always smiled and said hello. Our personal steward was great and I was very happy with her. The room was cleaned twice a day and if we were in our room longer, she would make sure to clean after we had left so it made her day probably a bit longer. Even with that, she still came in at night and turned down the room and made the towel animals, which my kids loved and took pics of every night. I was doing laundry and noticed that there was no more laundry soap in the dispenser. I called Housekeeping via the phone in the laundry room, told them, and someone ran up with soap for me and refilled the dispenser. I was amazed at how fast they fixed that issue. We loved our assistant waiter or whatever they are called. He was friendly and funny. The kids thought he was great! The head waiter was also very good but a bit shy as she was very new. We thought she was very kind and she took good care of us. The head guy (I don't remember what he is called) was nice but honestly we hardly saw him so it was a bit strange to tip him at the end of the cruise. Our 10-year old loved the Oceaneer Lab but he seemed to spend a lot of time on the Wii and the computer there but he does that at home, so we didn't much care. Plus he's on vacation! He made quite a few friends that all did the same thing so it was good for him. I was impressed by the security at the kids' clubs and how the workers there are very good about making sure we were our son's parents even though they had seen us numerous times. I wouldn't say the people that worked at the Oceaneer Lab were the most friendliest but I think their job is probably one of the hardest on the ship so I don't fault them for that. As long as they keep my kid safe, I'm happy. Our daughter spent quite a bit of time at The Edge and the workers there seemed like more fun but they probably have a more laidback job since the kids just come and go from there. They played dodgeball at the gym, had a scavenger hunt, made cookies, made their own pizzas, had movie nights, etc. There is so much to do on the ship! We would all look at the Navigator (Disney's daily newsletter) the night before and choose all of the things we wanted to do the next day. The plays are awesome! Disney just knows how to entertain like no one else. We had a ventriloquist on the ship who was hilarious and a comedian/magician who was so funny and perfect entertainment for adults and kids. They do fun family game shows and other things as well all throughout the cruise to keep everyone entertained. They played War Horse, the new Muppet movie, African Cats, and some other movies all day long, each day. They also had first-run movies on the TV in our stateroom all day. Those were Moneyball, the last Harry Potter movie, Puss in Boots, etc. These were movies that we hadn't been able to even rent yet. The excursions were fun. We put a lot of thought into it before we left and read reviews on other travel sites. We did the zip line in Cabo (loved it sooo much!). Our kids are still talking about it! We also did the Cabo Dolphins and that was a great experience. We took a walk on the pier in Cabo and although there are quite a few peddlers there, we just smiled and told them 'No thanks.' We had the best guacamole and chips, as well as wood-fired pizzas in Cabo at the pier at a place called Captain Tony's. I want to go back to Cabo just for that! In Puerto Vallarta we chose the Paradise Beach excursion and that was fun. The pool area was great and although it was overcast, we had a great time. Unlimited drinks, a nice lunch buffet, and an air-conditioned bus ride to and from plus a pool for us to swim in. :) We thought the people at the Port Adventures desk were awesome. I had booked an excursion online before the cruise but needed to make a change in the time and she was able to change that for us, no problem. Even if she hadn't been able to do it, it wouldn't have been her fault and I would have made it work. Oh! Don't forget to decorate your ship door but remember you can only use magnets, not tape. That was an easy way for us to see our door. Our neighbors tied a ribbon on their doorknob and that was a good idea too. Decorating was fun though, especially since we went over Valentine's Day. Also people do dress up for the formal and semi-formal night. Some people dressed up for the pirate night as well. We just wore the bandanas that they gave us at dinner. I was worried a bit before sailing about getting sick on the ship. For one thing, we had just heard that 2 cruise ships (not Disney) had just returned to port because so many people were sick. Like I said earlier, I saw employees wiping down the staircases all the time and the employees were also handing out hand wipes before eating at the buffet or the restaurants. I don't know if this is a change from earlier Disney cruises, but this one had 2 employees at both the ice cream place and the soda place. We would tell them what we wanted to drink or what flavor ice cream and they'd get it for us. I didn't mind it and actually started to prefer it being done this way since I know these places can be germ festivals. This was an amazing vacation for us and we've taken quite a few great vacations but never have cruised before. Yes, the room is small but you're not in the room very often. In fact, we really only came back to the room to sleep and change for dinner. The view from our large porthole was great. We faced the Arches in Cabo and it was awesome to see! The photographers took great pics but you're under no pressure to buy any as we did not buy a one. Every family gets a character breakfast and it was fun! I didn't go to the spa just because I didn't want to waste any time doing that when I could be enjoying the other things the ship offers and the port excursions. We loved this cruise so much that we booked another for next year! They offer a $200 onboard credit for your next cruise, a 10% discount in price, and 10% down if you book another cruise while on the current cruise--or at least that was the deal they were offering on our cruise. I am so glad that I didn't listen to those cruisers that had such negative experiences and cancel our cruise. Maybe it is just attitude for some people or maybe there really were some bad things they experienced but I didn't experience anything like that. You get what you give. If you're having a bad attitude, then everyone you see is going to seem to be dissing you in some way. Get over yourself and enjoy the vacation! Would you rather be at work??? Read Less
Sail Date February 2012
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