On Fridays, I highlight products that I think are sweet, in every sense of the meaning–sometimes literally, but not always!
Hope you all had a great Easter! I took a little break to enjoy the holiday weekend, but I’m back with another Disney Cruise recap! Here are the previous posts if you’re just tuning in:
The last full day of my Disney cruise was by far the best one. We spent most of the day docked on Castaway Cay, and it was paradise.
(Castaway Cay, as all Disney Cruisers know, is actually pronounced “Castaway Key.”)
Disney has a 99-year lease on the little Bahamian island, so the whole thing is completely Disney-managed and therefore extremely well-done. Although the island is small in relation to other islands, it is still pretty sizable, with plenty of room for each cruise passenger to spread out—especially after being in smaller quarters on the ship all week!
The whole thing is perfect. It lives up to its name, as it really does look like a shipwrecked island. Every bit of the décor is perfectly planned in true Disney style and it felt like walking into the Magic Kingdom or another Disney park. From the trams that shuttled passengers across the island (decorated like reindeer for Christmas–so cute!), to the tall nautical Christmas tree (the same design that’s seen in other Disney parks), everything was familiar with a tropical twist. I can’t say enough about how wonderful Castaway Cay is!
Before being released to explore the island paradise, I wanted to try Enchanted Garden for breakfast. It was the only spot I hadn’t yet hit for the most important meal of the day, so I had one last chance to check it out.
I must admit: in the end, it was my least favorite breakfast option. Royal Court took home the prize, and Cabanas was good in its own right—plus it was the quickest option.
Enchanted Garden simply wasn’t as practical, nor did it quite have the “Be Our Guest” mentality mastered like Royal Court did. Enchanted Garden is basically Cabanas with service. The service is nice and all, but it results in a slower process to get the exact same food Cabanas has.
There are a few different buffet selections with two different lines, and I captured a couple pictures. Here’s the meat and cheese section:
And here are the pastries:
The ones on the left are Krispy Kremes (I verified this when I saw the Cast Members taking them straight out of a box with a Krispy Kreme logo, although I hear they’re stored frozen), and the ones on the right are the typical Disney pastries you find all over normal Disney parks. They’re pretty forgettable, but it was nice that there was a varied selection.
The buffet also offered bacon, eggs, oatmeal, and a variety of fresh fruit.
I was anxious to get off the ship and explore, so breakfast was as quick as I could make it this morning. Although I’m glad I tried Enchanted Garden for breakfast once, I probably wouldn’t return. Royal Court was my favorite choice, and Cabanas was best for quick meals.
Here was our first view of beautiful Castaway Cay…
It was raining, so our parasailing excursion was unfortunately canceled, but truthfully, even the weather couldn’t put a damper on my day! Castaway Cay was still so gorgeous and relaxing and perfect.
It sprinkled on and off and eventually we had a sunny afternoon to enjoy, not to mention a stunning double rainbow painted across the sky just before the skies cleared!
There were two waterslides for kids (and kids at heart like me!) that you had to swim through water to get to. It was pretty chilly to wade through, but it was worth it!
Most of the Disney cruisers hung out on the family beach:
I, on the other hand, took the tram straight to the adults-only beach. It was exactly like I had hoped: quiet, peaceful, and picturesque.
Aren’t those turquoise waters beautiful?!
The adult beach had several chaise lounges and chairs, plus a few hammocks (which were claimed almost immediately). The longer I stayed, the busier (and louder) it got, but even so, it was a very serene spot to relax—hence its name, Serenity Beach.
At one point, Jack Sparrow even wandered by for photo ops! I didn’t get a chance to take a picture, but I was surprised Disney even had character greetings in places where children weren’t permitted. Disney doesn’t leave anybody out!
Serenity Beach, located on the opposite end of the island from the ship, is quite long, but at the end there are certain areas guests aren’t allowed to enter.
After soaking up my fill of sunshine, I had lunch at Serenity Bay BBQ. There were a few other places to eat on the island, but this one was the closest, and I think every location served the same foods.
Everything was included in the cost of the cruise, and the buffet included hamburgers, hot dogs, mahi mahi, BBQ ribs, lemon chicken, potato salad, couscous, Greek salad, chips, and Coleslaw.
Cast members were on hand to fill fountain beverages for us, and there was also a soft-serve machine for dessert. My favorite! :)
If you aren’t content to bask in the sunshine like I am, there’s plenty to do on the island. On one end, an old airstrip has been converted into a bike path, and you can rent bikes to ride.
There’s also snorkeling, shopping, and various port adventures to sign up for. Whatever you’re looking for, Castaway Cay has something for you!
This next photo gives a better idea of how big the island is. The family beach area stretches out near the ship, and Serenity Beach is at the opposite end (not pictured).
After a great day on the island, we went back on the ship and had plenty of time to see the nightly show before dinner. The featured show was called “An Unforgettable Journey” and it really wasn’t all that unforgettable, but it ended nicely with a handful of feel-good Walt Disney quotes, fireworks, streamers, and a lineup of princesses. As usual, no photos were allowed, otherwise I’d share some with you!
I had my last Disney Fantasy dinner at Animator’s Palate. Tonight’s meal seemed to be a bit of an excuse to use up leftovers from the week, and guests only got to choose their entrees instead of several courses, but everything was still pretty tasty.
Our servers brought six-grain bread with caramelized onions and a sun-dried tomato dip first.
Next, we each received an appetizer trio of smoked duck, fresh mozzarella with basil and tomato, and dill-marinated lobster and shrimp with a tomato mayonnaise and horseradish cream. The lobster was my favorite—it was absolutely delicious!
The soup of the night was a macaroni and cheese baked potato soup. Nope, that isn’t a typo—the two were actually combined into one dish! I wasn’t a huge fan, but my cousin thought it was great. Definitely unique!
I chose the seafood linguini pasta for my entrée. It came with lobster, scallops, shrimp, clams and asparagus, plus extra parmesan cheese that Oppie sprinkled on top.
My mom ordered the beef wellington, and it looked delicious.
For dessert, we were each served a special “See Ya Real Soon” Sweet Temptations: a trio that included celebration cake, chocolate decadence, and a cappuccino mousse tartlet. All of the desserts were really good, especially the celebration cake (pictured in the middle), a smooth raspberry square with just the right amount of sweetness and fruity flavor. Five stars from me!
The best part of the night, though, was the entertainment. When we first sat down, we arrived to these:
Guests each got to draw their own characters on their menus, and then the servers collected them. Later, during dinner, they showed an animated video that included all of our characters! I’ll leave the rest to be a surprise, but it was really cool to see, and I was impressed by the detail that most guests put into their drawings! Be sure not to miss this night at Animator’s Palate if you go!
Playful, interactive 101 Dalmations chased us out of the restaurant after dinner was finished. As always, Disney magic is in the details!
The seventh day of my cruise was the most memorable one, and I can’t wait to go back to Castaway Cay someday! Hands down, it was the best of the three ports we visited.
I’m back next week for one more short installation—Day Eight! “See ya real soon!” :)
Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this review. Castaway Cay was AMAZING and these are my honest thoughts!