1st time cruisers


We just booked a DCL cruise on the Dream! Just three nights to Nassau and Castaway Cay as this will be the first cruise for all of us. Any tips/not-to-missed recommendations you experienced cruisers can pass along? Kids age ranges 7-12. I posted in chat, but wanted to check with the experts here too…


I am hoping @lizzieanne771 will decide to stop by and see this thread.


It would be lovely to hear from you @lizzieanne771. I hope that you are well. You are missed.


We were also first-time cruisers and we were on the Disney dream last week and had a ball! I would be happy to share insights with you and any questions you might have that I could answer. Our children are 18 and 21, So I can’t address the kids activities, but I could address questions regarding the ship and activities at Nassau or Disney Island. When is your cruise?


Thank you, @HoneyBubbas! We are going in May. I think that we have decided not to do any excursions in Nassau (unless someone highly recommends something that sways our opinion! :slight_smile: ) since we have very limited time. Trying to keep it low key and enjoy the myriad of offerings on the ship. We do plan to enjoy the beach, snorkel, and possibly get bikes at CC. Anything you wish you knew beforehand to do or bring or see? Anything you absolutely loved? Anything to avoid? Any motion sickness issues for you? How does Pirate Night work? (i.e. is it come and go/still go see the theater show and do dinner, or is it something you want to be on deck for most of the time?) Are there fireworks? Hmmm…that might be enough questions to start with! :slight_smile:


We did the catamaran snorkeling trip and had a blast at Nassau but I don’t know if I would recommend it as I saw some kids not wanting to go out and snorkel as they were nervous in the open water. But I definitely recommend snorkeling at CC. You do have to go out pretty far to see underwater ship wrecks and the hidden Mickey, so hopefully your kids will be comfortable swimming out there, and you do wear life vests too. It’s a beautiful beach and so is the water. We walked around Nassau too, and the sellers are a bit pushy, so we just tried to ignore them. Also, bikes at Cayman Cay would be fun. We walked on the path where bikes can go, and it was very tropical and pretty. They also feed you on the island. We ate on the adult side and they actually served ribeye steaks and Mahi Mahi and ribs in addition to burgers and hotdogs. The family beach side has more kid friendly food, and of course ice cream cones! They have bug repellent on CC and we should have used it as my daughter and I got mosquito bites that we didn’t notice til later. I think we got them on our walk. Also it rained for half the day, but they gave us ponchos, but I noticed not all people received them, so just be ready if it does rain. It cleared up after 1:00. Oh, and they give you towels when you get off the ship, so no need to pack any. My daughter felt a little nauseas one night, so I gave her some Dramamine, and she slept great, no other problems after that. Regarding pirate night, it is a big deal! I was surprised how great so many of the costumes were. Many families were decked out! They gave us bandanas, but you had to bring everything else you wanted to wear. We ate in animators palette that night, and they played Pirates of the Caribbean music all night, and the pictures changed with pirate themes. Your kids will love it! We ate dinner at 5:45 and then attended a broadway show at 8:00. On Pirate night we saw Beauty and the Beast, and it was amazing! After that, back on deck for a little pirate show and then fireworks! We liked being on deck 12, and positioned ourselves on starboard side to watch as that’s the side they are launched on. Be sure you get there early for best positioning. You all are in for a real treat! We did not want to leave! :smiley:. Keep your questions coming, I am happy to assist with anything I can.


Thank you @HoneyBubbas for all the info. And thank you @LZog for posting. We are on the virge of booking our first cruise and this info is really helpful.


You are very welcome @ tjkjbarton, I would be happy to assist. I felt like I learned a lot on our first cruise, and I am now planning a trek to Disney World in September. We went there last year as well, so I am a bit more savvy about Orlando.


Oh, and I’m with the group that’s not happy that Star Wars is opening right before our trip, although my DH is very excited.


Are there life jackets just at the beach to borrow like they are at WDW pools? We were thinking of bringing our own snorkel gear since we know whose mouths have been on them. :slight_smile: But if the only way to get a life jacket is to rent the snorkel gear, we may need to rethink that—unless you don’t have to have jackets to snorkel.


Hi LZog
I wanted to make sure I gave you the right answer to your question so that’s why I took a while to respond. This is what I found out.
Life vests for swimming should be near Pelican Plunge, but for snorkeling, you will get your vests at Flippers and Floats (where you pick up the rental equipment, but you should be able to borrow the vests for free).
I hope this helps. I agree with you regarding the snorkels. We had to assume ours were sanitized and clean and thankfully none of us got sick from them. :sun_with_face:


We did that same cruise back in August with my boys (6 & 8) at the time they LOVE the kids club. They didn’t want to be with us at all. They also loved the midship detective agency game to play on the ship. They both also enjoyed watching movies from in the pool (we put them in life jackets so they could just float and watch). The kids club also opens on Castaway Cay they insisted on going so bring a wave phone with you off the ship they will text you if they want to be picked up (ours did not), then you can enjoy a drink on the island.


Wait, there’s a kids club on the island too?!?! My DS6 and DS9 are the same way at the kids clubs at WDW. They don’t want us to pick them up until the last minute.


They have an areas on the island that you can check them into like on the ship. They have a splash area, the do games and stuff in that area. It will list activities on the Navigator. They also will bring them to lunch as a group (I can’t recall when). If I recall correctly we got on the island before the kids club opened so we hung out on the beach for awhile with them and then they begged to go. It also closed before you have to be back on the ship and you have to pick your kids up they don’t take them back on the ship.