Whether in a Disney theme park or sailing on the Disney Cruise Line, the experience is sure to be filled with character as some of the most famous faces from decades of Disney animation history meet and greet with guests. A trip on the new Disney Fantasy affords plenty of easy-going opportunities to get an autograph and pose for a picture with Disney favorites, both on the cruise ship and on Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island.
All Disney Fantasy adventures begin by checking in at Port Canaveral, where characters often hang out in the lobby to begin the Disney experience early. Dressed in sailing attire, Minnie Mouse posed for my camera just before the Fantasy’s Inaugural voyage a couple weeks ago:
The character experience quickly continues upon stepping onboard, with Captain Mickey Mouse immediately available for a quick pose:
Just before the ship sets sail, a sail away party is hosted on the top deck, where Minnie Mouse gets the royal treatment, appearing with the rest of the Fab Five:
Throughout 7-day cruises on the Disney Fantasy, guests are presented with numerous character meet-and-greet opportunities, generally scheduled for at-sea days. Personal Navigator guides delivered to each stateroom offer specific times and places for many of the character appearances, though some do pop up unexpectedly.
One of the most popular opportunities to greet many favorite character all at once is a scheduled appearance by the Disney Princesses: Aurora, Cinderella, Belle, Ariel, Tiana, and Snow White. Their royal arrival takes place in the grand atrium, midship, an excellent opportunity for several photos with little wait – unlike the long lines that always lead up to these characters at Disney’s theme parks.
Disney Princesses greet passengers on the Disney Fantasy
In addition to the Disney Princesses, Aladdin has been known to hang around the atrium area too:
Of course, plenty of characters can be seen during the Disney Fantasy’s elaborate stage productions, including the new show “Wishes.” But they don’t hang around afterward for a picture and photography is generally not permitted during these shows, so the scheduled meet-and-greets are the best way to go to snap a shot.
On Castaway Cay, guests are immediately greeted by a row of characters, with the picturesque backdrop of the ocean and ship behind them:
Guests on shore may even get lucky and catch a glimpse of the elusive Captain Jack Sparrow, spotted here while riding the island’s tram:
And like the guests, Disney characters have to also eventually make their way back onto the Fantasy before it sails away from Castaway Cay:
A “See Ya Real Soon” show is scheduled at the tail end of each voyage, offering one final chance to meet characters before stepping off the ship. (More on that soon.)
There’s something extra special about meeting a Disney character in the middle of the ocean, knowing that they’re sharing a travel adventure beyond landlocked theme parks. Disney Cruise Line offers more than ample opportunities to meet with some of Disney’s most famous characters throughout every journey in an often more inviting atmosphere, mirroring the relaxation that’s almost guaranteed to come with a trip on the Disney Fantasy or any of Disney’s other three cruise ships.
More character photos from the Disney Fantasy and Disney Cruise Line: