I must have been out of my mind to agree to be confined in the same space for a week with about 2,000 kids running around out of control, screaming at the top of their lungs, while their loving parents patiently and unwaveringly succumb to their every demand.
Of course I wanted to be a good granddad. I so I invited my daughter and her family – including husband and 3 girls – my GD’s aged 9, almost 8 and 6 1/2 to join me on a child friendly cruise. There were many to chose from but she insisted that the only cruise that would make her and my GD’s happy is the Disney cruise. And so after two years of research and setting on a good age for the girls to attend, we are on the Disney Wonder in Alaska half way into our cruise. (Actually it is now one day post cruise)
I have labeled the QM2 a Ballroom Dancer’s paradise. I think everyone would label the Disney cruise a Children’s paradise. I might also add to my list the notion that high-end cruises like the Crystal cruise is more like a Senior’s paradise.
The good, the bad, and the ugly………….
First the best. The entertainment is world class. Some of the best shows that I have ever seen anywhere including upscale cruise ships. The rumors were right on; the entertainment is outstanding including the use of actors and dancers, videos, special effects, Disney characters and the use of the entire theatre with unexpected appearances and movements of cast members. The entertainment included a truly amazing magic show by Kyle Knight and Mistie. You can see some of pictures below that I took before being scolded by a staff member who sternly whispered that it is forbidden to take any pictures of the stage shows. Nevertheless, this aspect of the cruise was astonishingly well done and thoroughly entertaining. And the entertainment far surpassed anything experienced on any other cruise ship that I have been on.
Food: Disney – B, Cunard – C, Crystal – A
Service: Disney – B, Cunard – C, Crystal – A
Customer Service: Disney – A, Cunard – D, Crystal – A
Gym: Disney – B, Cunard – B, Crystal – B
Dancing & Music: Disney – D, Cunard – A, Crystal – B+
Entertainment: Disney – A, Cunard – B, Crystal – B
Extra Charges: Disney – D, Cunard – D, Crystal – A
Cabin: Disney – B, Cunard – B, Crystal – A
But I’m not Donald Trump. This wasn’t about me or my perceptions. This cruise was for my granddaughters. And from their eyes, this was a great week. One of them confessed it was the best week of her nearly eight years of life. Another one was so spell bound and focused by her surroundings; it was like having to wake her up from a deep sleep every time her parents wanted her attention. And the third one who was also the oldest, most aware but also the most reserved, was soaking up every new experience with concentration and delight. From their perspective, there is only one cruise line on earth and its name is DISNEY!
|famous steam clock in Gastown, Vancouver|
|who looks Goofy?|
|well the girls didn't get all the attention|
|every wonder how the Disney characters see out of these costumes|
|receding glacier near Tracy Arm - still quite beautiful|
|really cool bar I also visited about 14 years ago- the first time in Skagway|
|gold rush days prompted many benefits for those lucky prospectors|
|Cruise dining room head waiter was very engaging|
|music was pretty good...not really anything danceable but good enough to|
dance with my granddaughters
|another cool bar this time in Juneau - the Red Dog Saloon|
|antler chandelier in Red Dog Saloon|
|famous Alaska Hotel - on historic registry|
|the bar in the same hotel - clearly I would spend too much time in these Alaska |
bars if I lived in Alaska
|Juneau taken from the cruise ship - the only capital in America that you|
need either a boat or a plane to get to!