Disney Wish Cruise Review (Our Experience with Halloween on the High Seas)


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In this article, we provide a review of the Disney Wish. We’ll discuss our experience on the 5-day, 4-night Halloween on the High Seas Cruise. Our ports of call for this sailing include Nassau, Bahamas and Castaway Cay.

Bon Voyage! I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to hear those words roll off my tongue again. If you’ve had the opportunity to cruise with Disney Cruise Line, I’m sure you understand.

There’s nothing like it. From the moment you step on board, life has changed, at least for the length of your sailing. You are no longer tied down to a job or at the beck and call of text messages and social media alerts.

Of course, you can always buy an internet package if you need to be alerted. But that kills the whole cruising vibe of being out of reach.

We recently cruised out of Cape Canaveral, Florida, on the new Disney Wish. Not only did we experience a Halloween on the High Seas sailing, but our sail date was on Halloween.

However, since our departure date was exceptionally busy, we waited until the following day to celebrate the holiday. No worries, once you’re out at sea, it becomes difficult to distinguish between the days.

As you may know, a cruise can be as busy as you want or relaxed. Our cruise was a bit of both.

Below, I’ll share our day-by-day itinerary. Of course, some of us went our separate ways here and there to do things we enjoyed.

But ultimately, we met up for dinner each evening. As always, there’s one exception. That exception was Kristen’s son, who spent most of the cruise living his best life at The Oceaneer’s Club.

Disney Wish Day One Itinerary (Arrival and Boarding the Ship)

How do you get to the ship? This is one of the most commonly asked questions first-time cruisers ask. Thankfully, Disney makes it easy.

When sailing out of Cape Canaveral, most will fly into Orlando’s airport (MCO) and take ground transportation to the cruise terminal. Disney provides transfers from the airport or various Walt Disney World Hotels for $78.00 per person roundtrip.

Other options include hiring a private car service, or shuttle service, using Uber or Lyft, renting a car, or driving your vehicle. As your travel agent, we can help you decide which option suits your needs.

Since I live in Orlando, I drove my car to the terminal. Disney makes it simple to park and board the shuttle.

When you first arrive, porters are waiting to collect your luggage. You can see in the picture below where guests pull up and unload under a covered area.

If you elect to use a porter, you will need to tip them. From that point, you’ll move forward to park your car and go through security. You will see your luggage later in the day when it shows up in the hallway outside your room.

It costs us $90.00 to park in the parking deck for a five-day, four-night cruise.

A walkway on the third floor of the parking deck goes directly inside the cruise terminal. It took less than 15 minutes to get through both areas.

After you get through customs, there’s a large room where guests wait until their boarding group is called. We got there reasonably early, and they had only started boarding. Overall, we waited approximately 30 minutes until our boarding group was called.

Then you join a line to board the ship.

Here we go!

After boarding the ship, our priority was to complete the muster drill. A muster drill is a required safety exercise where you go to a designated location to check in with a crew member. We also had to sign in to the mobile app and certify that we had found our area.

Muster drills are mandatory and designed to help passengers locate the area where they are to go in the event of an emergency.

After completing our safety check, I noticed that Captain Minnie was greeting guests. So we stopped for a photo. Then we headed up deck 11 to have lunch at Marceline Market.

Marceline Market is a buffet that’s open daily for breakfast and lunch. It’s located on the aft side of the ship.

To eat at Marceline Market, all you have to do is walk in, prepare a plate, select a drink, and then find a table. A server will stop by from time to time to collect any dishes you’ve finished.

Regarding come-and-go dining options, you can also get lunch and dinner at the Mickey and Friends Festival of Foods. These quick services have walk-up windows located on deck 11 near the ship’s pools.

  • Mickey’s Barbecue
  • Donald’s Cantina
  • Daisy’s Pizzas
  • Goofy’s Grill
  • Minnie’s Ice Cream

After lunch, it was past 1:00 p.m., so we decided to see if our room was ready. Thankfully, our keys were in an envelope at the door to our room.

Our Stateroom on the Disney Wish

Staterooms on the Wish are themed to various Disney animated films. For example, our room featured elements from Cinderella.

Below we’ll preview our deluxe ocean-view stateroom with a verandah. This room sleeps up to three guests and has a partially obstructed view from the balcony.

A throw with the Wish logo was at the end of the queen-size bed.

A curtain hangs in the middle of the room to separate the sleeping areas.

Below we have a couch that converts to a bed.

Our cabin steward would come by each evening and turn down the bed while we were at dinner.

Here is an alternate view of the room.

The artwork over the bed was a nice touch.

Ample storage space is available. Additionally, there’s a hairdryer tucked away in the vanity area.

A mini-refrigerator is tucked inside one of the drawers.

Most will appreciate the split bathroom layout. One door in the cabins leads to a single vanity and the tub with shower combination.

Shampoo, conditioner, and soap are readily available.

The other door in the cabin opens to the water closet, where you have a vanity and toilet. All deluxe staterooms will have a split bath. However, interior staterooms do not.

We found plenty of storage space with two built-in closets for hanging items. A third closet partition offered shelving space, an in-room safe, and a shoe rack.

Here is the view from inside our room.

Here is our verandah with two chairs and a small table.

Whoever sits toward the back side of the balcony will have a partially obstructed view. However, with so little time in the room, it was fine for us.

When I finished taking room photos, it was getting close to 4:00 p.m. So we had to head back upstairs for the Disney Wish Sail Away Party.

There’s no better way to kick off your cruise than with a party. Yes, it is crowded. But Disney brings out all the characters for the party and sets the tone for the rest of the cruise.

If you want to secure a good spot, I recommend arriving at least 30 minutes before the party. Also, make sure to have plenty of sunscreen applied!

(Night One) Dinner at Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure

Disney’s Wish offers three main restaurants for dinner that are included with the cruise fare. You’ll dine at each of these restaurants during the rotational dining process.

If you’re on a four-night cruise, you’ll dine at one of the locations a second time throughout your sailing. Ideally, you would plan to dine at one of the signature dining locations on the evening you had a repeat location. However, both of the two fine dining restaurants require reservations and are out-of-pocket.

Dinner on our first night was at Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure. This experience includes a performance while you dine.

Since we were a party of six, we were seated at a large table. You’ll receive a table assignment upon arrival and sit at the same table night each evening. Additionally, you’ll have the same wait staff each evening except for fine dining.

During our meal, characters from Frozen appeared on stage in the middle of the room.

Overall, Arendelle was a fun dining experience. Since we sat toward the back of the room, we didn’t have to be invested in the performance. But if we were closer, it would have had our full attention.

Since most of the dining rooms were fairly dark, I didn’t get the best photos. So here are a few of the items we had at this meal.

First, this is Anna’s Koldtbord consisting of smoked salmon, smoked trout, salmon gravlax, shrimp, and a dill honey mustard. Unfortunately, this was a little fishier than most of us would have liked.

Next the Troll Valley Baby Field Greens Salad contains brioche croutons, candied walnuts, and lingonberry dressing. It’s hard to go wrong with such a simple salad.

From the kettle portion of the menu, we have carrot soup. It was fine.

Here we have Elsa’s Royal Baked Scallops. Per the menu, this is a shrimp tarragon bisque with rainbow carrots, leeks, and a flaky pastry. This dish was well-received.

As far as entrees go, there are a variety of options. However, I learned early on that often it’s better to consider the “lighter options” portion of the menu.

While a steak with a baked potato is not necessarily lighter, these menu items were more quality. One evening, I only ordered a baked potato. And if you see fit, you are welcome to do the same.

Here is King Agnaar’s roasted pork tenderloin. This dish was much larger than it looked. Unfortunately, I didn’t try this dish, so I can’t comment on the taste.

Lastly, we all tried the Troll’s Family Rock chocolate bar for dessert. It was another darling presentation.

Disney Wish Itinerary Evening Entertainment (Night One)

After dinner, we headed to the Grand Hall to see the lighting of the pumpkin tree. This ceremony happens nightly at approximately 7:30 p.m. between dinner services. It is exclusive to the Halloween on the High Seas cruise.

As you can see from the photo below, the area fills up. It gets crowded because many of us have just finished dinner while the rest are awaiting late dinner service. Those waiting for dinner have already been to the evening’s entertainment offering.

After the tree-lighting ceremony, another special surprise was waiting behind the curtain.

The Sanderson Sisters (Disney characters version) joined the stage with a song and dance number. As you can imagine, the crowd went wild.

After the Sanderson Sisters exited, it was time for us to head to the Walt Disney Theatre for our evening entertainment.

One extra special entertainment offering is available each evening. This evening was Disney Seas the Adventure, a new musical spectacular that shares the story of friendship and inspires the audience to follow their dreams.

Unfortunately, Disney doesn’t allow photography or videos in these Broadway-style performances. But I can assure you that you will want to attend all three musicals offered during your sailing. They were all astounding.

Image Courtesy Disney Parks Blog

After such a busy day, we parted ways, and I returned to the room. A towel sea turtle was waiting. Each evening, the cabin steward will turn your throw (or towels) into a fantastic creation while you’re out.

Disney Wish Day Two Itinerary (Day at Sea)

We were up and ready for breakfast reasonably early on day two, which is spent at sea. For breakfast, you have two choices.

First, there’s Marceline Market, where we had lunch the first day. Secondly, you can opt for a table service breakfast at 1923.

We decided to try a leisurely breakfast at 1923. There are two sides to the restaurant, Roy and Walt. For breakfast, it doesn’t matter so much which side you choose. But in the evening, you will be assigned to one side.

We were given a menu upon arrival and ordered several items. First, here is the fruit platter.

Then we had a meat and cheese selection.

I had oatmeal with turkey sausage.

Unfortunately, the sausage was almost too tough to eat.

Anna requested a custom plate, and our servers brought what she requested. Since these things are included in the cruise fare, no one cares what you order as long as it’s available.

After breakfast, we went our separate ways. I stopped at the Wishing Star Cafe to order a coffee with Mickey Mouse. Fun fact, the design is made with carrot juice.

However, you’ll want to know this is an extra cost item. Coffee and other complimentary beverages are available all day at the Mickey and Friends Festival of Foods.

Since we had a day at sea, I decided to hit the gym. Usually, I would enjoy walking on one of the upper levels first thing in the morning.

Unfortunately, the Wish doesn’t have a dedicated walking trail like most ships. You can walk around some of the lower levels. But the walk requires going up and down staircases on each side and cutting through the ship’s interior on one end.

After a lap or two, I gave up and decided to hit the treadmill. Senses Fitness Center on the Disney Wish is impressive. The long layout of the space allows for a good amount of equipment and provides enough room for everyone to have their own space, even when it’s crowded.

These photos were taken in the evening when the areas were more open. While we didn’t schedule any services at Senses during our cruise, we did tour the spa one evening.

Senses is a tremendous spa with and indoor and outdoor area.

They have an ice lounge.

And there’s a Laconium.

A Laconium is a dry sweating room where the temperature is more comfortable than a sauna.

Overall, Senses Spa is a relaxing place worthy of a special appointment during your cruise.

As for the rest of our day at sea, our group ended up at the pool. Disney movies are played all day long on the big screen. You can easily see the screen from most chairs on the main deck.

Additionally, we took a few minutes this afternoon to ride the AquaMouse, Disney’s first attraction at sea. The AquaMouse is a waterslide attraction that extends out over the ocean. It’s a must-do for guests at least once during the cruise!

(Night Two) Dinner at 1923 and The Little Mermaid

Our first day at sea passed ever so quickly. Before we knew it, it was time for dinner and entertainment. This evening Kristen and her family had dining reservations at Palo, which left Anna and me returning to 1923 for rotational dining.

Here are a few of the items we tried. First, we have the Hyperion Four-Cheese Tricolor Tortelloni.

My appetizer was the Kingswell Duck Confit Pastilla.

From the kettle, I tried the Pulled Guinea Hen Chowder. Unfortunately, this tasted like watered down corn.

Anna ordered another appetizer, the Burrata Cheese with Prosciutto.

And I tried the Fennel Bartlett Pear and Tatsoi Salad. This was a tasty salad.

Anna ordered the Lobster Salad from The Lighter Side portion of the menu. It was a basic salad with a solid serving of lobster. I would order this again on a return cruise.

We also ordered the 1923 Peppered Filet Mignon to share, which our server recommended.

And I ordered the Tortiglioni Pasta, which sounded promising. But, unfortunately, this dish was bland, with hardly any flavor, except for the salty bites of pancetta.

For dessert, I decided to play it safe with the Hollywood Hills Chocolate Fudge Sundae. While this dessert is as basic as it gets, it was the best thing I had all evening.

Anna ordered the Atwater Fuji Apple Cheesecake, which she enjoyed.

Our server also brought out the restaurant’s signature dessert, the Burbank Blueberry-Lemon Bavarian Cream. This was a beautiful presentation, but we found it fairly generic regarding taste.

Also, this evening was Halloween, and our servers brought a fun chocolate spider to the table.

While we had a large amount of food for two people, we didn’t eat that much. Most of our plates were sent back and hardly touched. So, unfortunately, 1923 was our least favorite dining experience on the cruise.

After dinner, we decided to get seats early for A Treasure Retold–Disney The Little Mermaid. On the previous evening, we saw the play from the balcony. So I wanted to sit as close to the front as possible for this play to compare.

We had the best time and it felt like we were part of the play. While all the shows we saw on the Wish are worthy of five stars, this was my favorite.

Image Courtesy Disney Parks Blog

After the play, we returned to our room and found a pumpkin, which was appropriate, considering it was Halloween! Also, I forgot to mention many of the guests were dressed in full costumes this evening.

Disney Wish Day Three Itinerary (Nassau, Bahamas Port of Call)

When we woke up the following day, we were docked at Nassau. Anna had arranged for us to take a travel agent tour of Sandals Royal Bahamian. Kristen and her family planned to visit Atlantis, one of the recommended excursions listed in the Disney Cruise Line app.

Anna and I were in the first group of guests off the ship. I took a photo of the sign below as we exited. It reminds you that all guests should be aboard the ship by 4:45 p.m. Also, you were required to have your Key to the World Card (room key), photo ID, and a form for minors where applicable.

We were told to leave our passports locked in our room safe at this port of call.

After disembarking the ship, we took a bus to Sandals Royal Bahamian. Our bus driver let us out across the street from the entrance.

While we were visiting for a tour, this resort sells day passes. So during our visit, we were treated to breakfast, lunch, cocktails, and free time at the beach and the pool.

We had a wonderful day enjoying the resort.

Nassau’s clear waters were stunning.

After lunch, we toured several of the rooms and suites at the resort. As travel agents, we take advantage of as many tours as possible. These experiences help us pinpoint the perfect destinations to recommend to our clients.

After our tour, the front desk secured a driver to take us back to the cruise terminal. It was time to get ready for a special evening at Enchante, the Disney Cruise Line’s newest fine dining experience.

(Night Three) Dinner at Enchante and Pirate’s Night

Kristen had managed to finagle us a table for six at Enchante this evening. So we were all excited to dine here after our day in the Bahamas.

We had a lovely evening with multiple courses, a cheese cart, and two desserts. Yes, two! Our dining experience lasted well over two hours.

Since this was such an elaborate meal, we have a separate article that details the experience.

Related: Enchante Review on the Disney Wish

After dinner, there was the option to attend a Pirate’s Rockin’ Parlay Party, followed by fireworks at sea. While my theme song might go to the tune of “Yo Ho, Yo Ho, a Pirate’s Life for Me,” this pirate was tuckered out for the evening.

So I elected to go to the room and watch Disney movies on television until the ocean rocked me to sleep. It didn’t take long.

To my surprise, a pirate was waiting. This is a pirate, right?

Disney Wish Day Four Itinerary (Castaway Cay)

Castaway Cay was our best day. It was the most relaxing day and the perfect place to spend the entire last day of our cruise. These things do go by quickly, don’t they?

When I awoke this morning, our view was stunning. Before this trip, I had yet to visit the Bahamas. So while I’ve seen the clear waters of the Caribbean before, I couldn’t get over the clarity in the Bahamas.

There’s no wonder why so many travelers visit this destination regularly.

Since this was a leisurely day, I ended up at Marceline Market for breakfast. This time I dined outside with a view of Castaway Cay in the distance.

After breakfast, I gathered my beach attire and tennis shoes and headed to the island. To my surprise, several characters were greeting guests.

Pluto and Goofy were already having fun in the sun!

It was also cool to see the Wish in the distance. When we were at Nassau, the Wish was surrounded by other ships.

Castaway Cay has a tram that takes you to various points on the island. You’ll want to take it if you have small children or have a load to carry.

There are several stops along the way. I walked to Pelican Point and boarded the tram to Serenity Bay. Anna had gotten there early and found us a seat.

Serenity Bay, the adult-only beach, is about the farthest public destination on the island. Walking there from the ship would take about 30 minutes or so.

Here is the view from my chair. We spent the morning at this beach and then had lunch at Castaway Air BBQ. They had hamburgers, hot dogs, ribs, potato chips, various salads, fresh fruit, and other items you might find at a barbecue.

After lunch, we spent a little more time at Serenity Bay.

Then we decided to rent bicycles to explore the island.

Bikes cost $13.00 per rental, and you’ll need your Key to the World card to rent one.

We rode bikes down the old airstrip. Trams use part of the strip to transport guests across the island.

Several bike paths are available. One way leads to a lookout tower.

We parked our bikes and climbed the tower.

It was shocking to see the Disney Wish look so tiny in the distance.

I cannot say enough good things about Castaway Cay. I would have been happy to have two days here instead of one.

We rode our bikes down a few more paths.

We passed a few private cabanas. A cabana rental might be ideal if you’re looking for a bit of privacy and extra shade.

Then we headed over to Pelican Point to see if we could find Kristen and her family.

We met up with the rest of our group and spent the afternoon together.

Anna was interested in doing the Castaway 5K, so she inquired about how it worked. She ended up getting us a medal for a photograph.

Since the 5K is informal, anyone can complete it when they want. But I recommend getting it out of the way first thing in the morning before the sun gets too high. A cast member will provide you with a medal when you finish.

While we were at Pelican Point, a fish swam by several times. I took a photo to show the clarity of the water.

Before we knew it, it was time to head back for our last evening aboard the ship.

Some days you don’t want to end. This was one of them.

We slowly made our way back to the Wish.

A few people were still participating in add-on experiences.

It was a lovely walk back to the ship.

A sign overhead reads, “See Ya Later, Mon.”

I also used this opportunity to get a close-up of Rapunzel, who resides at the ship’s stern.

(Night Four) Dinner at Worlds of Marvel and Aladdin

After boarding the ship, it was time to get ready for dinner at Worlds of Marvel. This was our final restaurant rotation and the one place we’d yet to eat.

For reference, had we not went to Enchante the night before, we would have been at 1923 again.

Worlds of Marvel is a large restaurant with screens near each table.

Additionally, every table has a Quantum Core device that children (or adults) can interact with from time to time during dinner. Often, throughout the meal, lights in the restaurant dim.

Ant Man and The Wasp appear on screen during the meal explaining some of the secrets behind Pym particles. However, the meal gets disrupted and you’re left to help fight the bad guys.

Thankfully, it all works out in the end. Also, there’s special appearance by Ant Man and The Wasp. They walk through the restaurant thanking every one for their help.

Since this was our last evening, we had one more Broadway-style show to attend after dinner. This evening’s entertainment was Aladdin, and it was spectacular.

After dinner, we visited a couple of lounges. Then, when we came back to the room, we were greeted by our last towel animal. It’s a puppy right?

Before we wrap things up, I wanted to share a few other photos from our Halloween on the High Seas Cruise on the Disney Wish.

The entire ship is gorgeous.

Every where you look, there are special details.

Cinderella’s glass slipper is on display in The Grand Hall.

This is also where you’ll find her statue.

This rose was on display at The Rose Lounge that sits between Enchante and Palo.

Luna is one of the more casual theaters on the Disney Wish. One evening they had a silent disco party in this space.

Here is the Bayou Lounge.

And, of course, we couldn’t forget the Star Wars: Hyperspace Lounge.

Lastly, Joyful Sweets is located on deck 11. All of the items here will cost extra.

However, I think most will agree, it’s worth a visit at least once during your sailing.

It all looked delicious.

Here are a few more treats.

Overall, we had an amazing time on this fun and family-friendly sailing. If you’re considering a Halloween on the High Seas Cruise or any other cruise, please reach out to us.

Fill out our contact form here, and someone will be in touch with you shortly.

Let us Know…

What do you think of this review of the Halloween on the High Seas Cruise by Disney? Have you ever sailed with Disney Cruise Line? Do you have questions about cruising?

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