2 weeks from today we will finally be back in my family in our happy place. 14 days…
So, as usual, our plans have changed a bit.
We land in Orlando at 9:05am. We had a breakfast reservation at Ohana in our resort (Polynesian Villas and Bungalows) at 10:55am but the planner in me got nervous we wouldn’t get there in time. In that time, it was announced Chef Mickey’s would be offering brunch from 11:30am-2:30pm. I was elated to be able to reserve a table at noon for our family as we all LOVE Chef Mickeys and this will give us a good excuse to hop on the monorail for a ride.
For the rest of the day we are going to enjoy the new Polynesian Villas and Bungalows. The Lava pool is done and open, which is really exciting. The resort itself has a ton of activities for its guests – which is why we try to suggest that everyone take a day to enjoy their resort while on vacation. These are amazing resorts that would completely and totally stand out on their own even if they weren’t located on Walt Disney World property. The Polynesian has Bingo, Hula lessons, a daily Pool Party at the Lava Pool, a campfire at Night and Movies Under the Stars on the beach. We have also talked about renting a boat for 30-60 minutes and cruising around Bay Lake. The adults certainly want to check out Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto and we all look forward to seeing the Electrical Water Pageant and Wishes from the Polynesian’s Beach. Since we are planning on such a busy day, dinner will be ordered and enjoyed from Capt. Cook’s as will breakfast the next day. Snacks will be fulfilled at least twice from Pineapple Lanai as we have all been craving Dole Whips ever since we tried them last summer in Aulani.
We have a private car picking us up the next morning to head to Port Canaveral. We have learned our cruise is sold out- but we weren’t planning on upgrading at the port anyway. We are very happy with the category 5E staterooms 10166 and 10164 (plus Tricia and her family are cruising with us in stateroom 10162!). We have scheduled a stop at ABC Liquors, which worked well for us in previous cruises save a little money. We usually do not head to Cabanas for lunch once on board, to avoid the crowds we go to Enchanted Garden. With our rooms being right below Cabanas- I am sure we will be there often enough. 😉
Upon boarding there are a few things that I need to remember to do. Meeting Anna and Elsa is a ticketed meet and greet onboard- you have to sign up upon boarding, I need to do this for my kids. Tricia, Sandy and I met them in January without them- and they haven’t let me forget it. I also want to check out dining rotation and make sure the night I have us scheduled for Palo is not an Animator’s Palate night, if so I need to try and move our dinner date night- if not- I had good karma the day I booked it. 😉 I also need to see if we can link another couple to our Palo brunch- we have an 11am brunch time with Tricia and Arnie and I think they (Juanita and Art) have a noon reservation on the same day. I called and they said they should be able to adjust once on board. I am really hoping the Cast Member I spoke to is right. Did I mention this ship is sold out and his might not be easy to do?
Our next day is a sea day- which I LOVE. A full day at the pools, catching a movie, shopping… Mike and I have signed up for a Mixology class at 4pm, which was something I tried in January and I am excited again to go with him. Other than that- gasp- we have no plans but to enjoy the ship and get our sea legs.
On the 10th we will stop in Cozumel and have an excursion planned- “Cozumel Ruins, Chocolate, and Beach Break”. We head to San Gervasio, the sanctuary of the goddess Ixchel, where we will have approximately 60 minutes to explore and learn. Our next stop is the Mayan Cacao Company where we are signed up for a chocolate workshop that “showcases the origins of Mayan cacao through the ages, the manufacturing process, a demonstration on different stages of chocolate production and, of course, delicious tastings along the way”. Next we head to Playa Mia Beach Club, enjoy our welcome beverage and have approximately 90-minutes of leisure time to enjoy the beach. Hobie Cat sailboats, a swimming pool, water icebergs, paddle boats, kayaks, floating mats and water bikes are all included. We are doing this excursion with 2 other families- so the kids can go have fun while we can relax a bit.
The next day we are in port in Grand Cayman. Two years ago Mike and I got off the ship and enjoyed a few drinks locally- this time we might grab the kids and head to the Cayman Turtle Farm. We have to see where the day takes us. With a sold out ship, we would like to not be too scheduled so we can still feel like we enjoyed the ship as well. Mike and I have a dinner date at, the adults only, Palo at 6pm.
We are in Jamaica the next day and while we originally thought we would head to one of the 2 Beaches Resorts on the island, we decided against it since they are 90-120 minutes away from the port. We might just pop off the ship and walk around the port a bit- again, conscious of the sold out ship and we might want some pool time, catch a movie, or try the Muppet Detective Agency. Tonight is Pirate Night on board and I was able to reserve all 3 kids in the Pirates League to get them ready! We have main dining, so their appointments (First Mate Package for Mikey and Empress Packages for the girls) are at 4:30 so they are ready for dinner at 5:30pm.
A few Pirate Night pictures of the 5 of us…
The next day is another Sea Day. Again, Mike & I have a brunch reservation at Palo at 11am, which might be adjusted once onboard. The rest of the day I can already hear the AquaDuck, Donald Pool, and Quiet Cove Pool calling my name…
Friday is the most bittersweet day on our cruise- Castaway Cay day. Jacqueline is signed up for the teen excursion on the island- and both the girls and I are seriously considering the Castaway Cay 5K. Mike, Katie, Mikey, and I also have an hour bicycle rental plus snorkeling and a float rented for the day as well with the Castaway Cay Getaway Package.
The next morning our driver meets us in Port Canaveral and we head back to NY on our 12:55pm flight home.