Where would you like to go today? The southern seas, or perhaps the northern glaciers? This ship has seen it all! The Disney Wonder – Disney’s second cruise ship, and sister ship to the Disney Magic – chartered its maiden voyage in August 1999. Themed to Disney’s The Little Mermaid – guests will be immediately immersed in Ariel’s undersea world when they step into the atrium and see a bronze sculpture of the princess herself. The atrium is embellished with nautical colors and eye-catching murals from Disney’s animated classic. This ship can hold 2,700 passengers, spread throughout eleven decks and 875 staterooms. Come explore this elder statesman of the DCL fleet.
Home Away From Home
The Disney Wonder has a large variety of staterooms.
- Inside Staterooms sleep up to four adults. As the name might suggest, they have no view of the outside world. They are also among the smallest rooms on the ship. As such, they are the least expensive rooms on the ship.
- Deluxe Oceanview Staterooms also sleep up to four, but offer porthole views outside the ship. Not a bad view to wake up to!
- The next level of luxury is the Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah. These rooms can sleep up to five adults (for the family stateroom) but what sets them a tier above is the verandah you can walk out onto from your room, to enjoy some much-appreciated fresh ocean air.
- The highest level of stateroom is the Concierge Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah. This sleeps up to five adults. Concierge Oceanview Staterooms also come in one- and two-bedroom suite varieties, which sleep five and seven, respectively. The peak of the concierge pyramid is the Concierge Royal Suite with Verandah, which sleeps up to seven and has floor-to-ceiling windows looking out on the verandah.
So what exactly is Disney Concierge Level? Think of it as being similar to Club Level treatment in some Disney resort hotels, but even better. Guests who sail in Concierge Level enjoy several perks, including:
- Early access to cruise activity bookings
- Exclusive onboard meals and other offerings
- Ability to rent cabanas on Disney’s Castaway Cay private island (when the ship’s itinerary heads there)
- Exclusive access to a pretty swanky Concierge lounge.
The planDisney PDF Pocket Guide offers more details on all the different room types available on the Wonder.
Let’s Eat (and Eat, and Eat)
One common thread all cruise lines share is food (and lots of it)! Disney is no exception here, with most food being included in the price of the cruise. But the food on a Disney Cruise is truly exceptional. Let’s explore what the Wonder offers for dining.
Rotational Dining – an innovative concept first introduced by DCL – gives all guests the opportunity to dine at each of the ship’s main themed dining rooms at least once on every cruise. Parties are assigned a dining location and a table each night. Individual parties (or groups) travel from dining room to dining room each day. Even better – their server travels with them each step of the way, to establish a familiarity and trust that will make each subsequent meal on the cruise even better than the last.
The three main dining rooms on the Wonder include:
- Animator’s Palate – this popular dining location features the art of Disney animation, as well as character entertainment. It offers Asian and Pacific Island flavors, as well as fresh California eating.
- Tiana’s Place – Inspired by Disney’s hardest-working princess, features Louisiana-inspired, Creole and Cajun cuisine. Guests will enjoy a hopping live jazz vibe while eating.
- Triton’s – The sea king’s upscale dining room offers American cuisine for breakfast and lunch, and continental cuisine with a French flair for dinner.
Aside from the rotational dining rooms, the Wonder offers an adult-only signature dining experience in Palo. The Northern Italian flavors in Palo are legendary on the DCL circuit, but the experience will cost extra, as a meal at Palo is not included in the cruise price.
A popular place to quickly grab some of your favorite breakfast and lunch grub is Cabanas. This casual dining location offers a varied menu of American fare, and turns to table service for dinner. The Wonder offers several poolside quick service locations, and a healthy number of lounges sprinkled throughout the ship as well (with adult-only destinations including French Quarter Lounge, Crown & Fin Pub, Cadillac, and Azure).
Showtime on the Seas
The Walt Disney Theatre offers Broadway-quality shows, included as part of your cruise.
- Frozen, A Musical Spectacular is a full-length retelling of Anna and Elsa’s adventure in Arendelle. Olaf, Kristof, Sven, and even Prince Hans join the story based on Disney’s hit animated movie.
- Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic is a variety show featuring scenes from favorite Disney films (think Disney on Ice or a Disney Castle stage show, but kicked up a notch in quality).
- The Golden Mickeys is a Hollywood-style awards performance showcasing spectacular songs and special appearances by Mickey and friends. This show comes complete with a red carpet, for the ultimate in high style.
Aside from theater productions, Deck 9 features two different outdoor shows, including Mickey’s Sail-a-Wave Party! … A Bon Voyage Celebration and Fireworks at Sea.
Select sailings on the Wonder (and other DCL ships) offer other unique experiences, including Frozen Deck Party, Pirate Night, Very Merrytime Cruises, Halloween on the High Seas, and New Year’s Eve entertainment.
The Great White North
What truly distinguishes the Wonder from every other ship in the DCL fleet is the Alaskan adventures. The Wonder is the only ship that embarks on this trip through nature’s wonderland. On select itineraries, guests can experience beauty beyond description at arctic ports of call featuring majestic glaciers, cascading waterfalls, and rugged mountains. Of course, the pools on-board may be a little chilly depending on the weather!
The Wonder offers two guest pools – Goofy’s Pool and the Quiet Cove Pool – both located on Deck 9. Other splashy options on Deck 9 include AquaLab Splash Zone (geared towards families), Twist ‘n Spout water slide (including a double loop twist), and Dory’s Reef (for toddlers and infants).
For the Younger Crowd
When the adults want to just relax by the pool or at a lounge, Disney has them covered with plenty of kid and youth activities. All DCL ships offer a range of youth destinations, including the following:
- “it’s a small world” nursery – ages 6 months to 3 years.
- Oceaneer’s Club and Oceaneer’s Lab – ages 3 to 12 – offers themed spaces like Andy’s Room and the Slinky Dog Slide.
- Edge – ages 11 to 14 – gives ‘tweens a space to chill, with flat screen TVs, video games, and a dance floor.
- Vibe – ages 14 to 17 – allows teens a place to be themselves (without tag-along siblings or parents).
Aside from eating, swimming, and shows (as amazing as that combination is) the Wonder offers other activities for guests of varying ages. Adults have full use of the fitness center, as well as Senses Spa & Salon. Teens can enjoy a luxury experience of their own at Chill Spa. Different spaces on the ship offer additional activities such as movies, trivia challenges, and character meet-and-greets, among other activities. The DCL Navigator App will spell it all out for guests.
If you think cruises can be claustrophobic – think again. At 964 feet long, the Disney Wonder is a literal city-on-the-sea, packed with magical surprises for guests of all ages.
planDisney Pocket Guides are especially helpful to guests who are considering staying at a resort (or sailing on a Disney cruise ship) they’ve never before experienced. The Pocket Guides take the form of 5-14 page PDF slides, which are easily printable and savable to smart devices. They offer efficient snapshots of the resort basics, including:
- Transportation options
- Room sizes
- Food and beverage options and locations
- Pools and recreation activities
- Tips from the planDisney panel
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Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.