Click here to read about day 4 of our Very Merrytime Western Caribbean cruise on the Disney Magic.
The best day of the year had arrived: we were at Castaway Cay! Saying that Castaway Cay is heaven on Earth is an understatement!!! Disney’s private island can be as serene or as action-packed as you want it to be. There are so many options in terms of things to do (or not do).
Here was the view from the balcony on the morning of our arrival (we were on the “port” side of the ship):
And the view down below (since it was the week of Christmas):
Before we got off the ship, I did the usual breakfast routine: went up to Cabana’s several times to bring back food to our stateroom, then went over to the Concierge Lounge for my gourmet café latte. Once we were ready to go, we walked off the ship. Of course, my character-obsessed son made us do multiple meet and greets with the beach-going characters while ashore and would not allow us to go to our cabana until he was finished….
There was Chip and Dale in their old-school swimming onesies:
Minnie in her angel-fish-kissing beach cover-up and high heels, and Goofy with his life jacket and sandals:
(Note how towels were being handed out – no need to bring any off the ship. And, if you’ve booked a cabana, there are plenty of towels provided there.)
And, last but not least, Crabby Donald Duck:
While we were waiting around between character meet and greets, I snapped these photos of the Christmas tree and the ship:
One thing I love about Castaway Cay is how Disney, in its traditional and humorous fashion, creates a truly immersive and cohesive theme to this island paradise. Case in point: the local post office, decked out in the holiday trimmings:
I love this giant buoy, too:
Once we were done with the characters, we walked over to the first tram station. The tram had just left, so instead of waiting, which we seemed to be doing all morning, we decided to walk most of the way to our cabana. It was a bit of a hike, but seeing this sign (and all those palm trees) was more than encouraging:
Oh look! The tram is coming back…too late for us.
Here is a view of the Family Beach through the palms:
This photo was taken around 10:30am, and, as you can see, there were plenty of beach lounge chairs and shade available. There was so much space to spread out on the island (and thankfully no other cruise ship passengers besides those on the Magic), that we never felt that there were any crowds whatsoever.
Along the walk, near Scuttles Cove, we spotted Pluto, and most importantly, no line to take a photo!
This photo of my son hugging Pluto amazes me, as just a year prior, he was terrified of Pluto when we went on the Disney Dream. Those characters are rather charming and can grow on you!
The cabana check-in desk is at the Pelican Point tram stop (the second tram stop after boarding near the ship). After checking in, we were whisked away in an oversized golf cart to our cabana, which you can read about here.
There is nothing more relaxing than having your own private retreat on the beach, and that is exactly what we experienced throughout our stay in the cabana. We got ourselves settled in by 11:00am, which allowed for plenty of beach time, a leisurely lunch in the cabana, time to feed the fish in the lagoon, and (did I mention this?) LOTS of beach time.
Speaking of lunch, Cookies Too BBQ was just a 5-10 minute walk from our cabana. My husband picked up some spicy chicken sandwiches, along with other goodies, and brought them back for us all to eat in the privacy of our cabana. This food was in addition to the snacks and fresh fruit already provided in the cabana.
Also, speaking of the beach…
Walking along the sand, look who I discovered with his turtle buddies:
Now, this is the life, even when clouds roll in:
Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end. We were so very sad that we had to leave this paradise!
Before getting back on the ship, we wanted to go to She Sells Sea Shells (yes, that’s the name of the store) to pick up some exclusive Castaway Cay merchandise (found only on the island, and nowhere else in the world). Beware: though you can charge to your stateroom on Castaway Cay (in fact, it’s the only way to pay on the island, as cash and credit cards are not accepted), none of the merchandise is eligible for the 10% Disney Visa card discount. Phooey!
Even so, we still picked up some good loot (without the much-needed 10% discount). Check out my Castaway Cay hoodie:
And, a Castaway Cay Mickey pin, to always remind me of this fantastic island:
After we finished our shopping, we took the tram back to the boat. I took this photo as we were walking back:
Once back on board, we were AMAZED at what Flora had done with my son’s stuffed animals in our stateroom:
How could she ever top THIS????? Had she reached her pinnacle?
It was time to clean ourselves up for dinner. After we were ready, I grabbed a pre-dinner glass of wine from the Concierge Lounge (the last night for my happy hour – boo!). Our last dinner on the ship was in Animator’s Palate. When I saw the cover of the menu, tears swelled up in my eyes:
Noooooo! The cruise was almost over. Literally hours were left. Well, that meant we really had to savor every moment and our dinner.
Ever the healthy one, my husband ordered the Blackened Chicken Salad. Ever pushing the envelope and my waiter’s patience, I ordered multiple items from each course: Tomato Caprese (appetizer), Malaysian Chicken Satay (appetizer), Roasted Filet of Beef Wellington (main course), Chocolate Decadence (dessert), and Cappuccino Mousse (dessert).
Best part of the meal:
After dinner we returned back to our stateroom, as I had a LOT of packing to do. We would be booted off the ship in just over 12 hours. But, Flora was not done yet!
Tears were streaming down my face! We didn’t want to go home EITHER!!!!
It didn’t help my sadness to find this departing gift on our bed, provided by the Concierge team:
All Disney Concierge guests are given a limited edition print at the end of their cruise. I love how this print has the main Disney characters incorporated into the design of the stair railing.
Of course, we were very sad that our phenomenal Very Merry Time cruise was ending. We made so many “magical” memories on the Magic! The next day we would be disembarking. I wished that we could stay on the ship forever!
Click here to read about day 6 and going home after our Very Merrytime Western Caribbean cruise on the Disney Magic.