Tips and Tricks for the Best First-Time Cruise aboard the Disney Dream

in Disney, Entertainment, Food

Day 2

7:00 am Nassau – The Dream arrived at its first destination, Nassau, Bahamas.

8:15 am Oceaneer’s Club – To start off the day I got a peek inside the Oceaneer’s Club. During select times throughout the cruise, the club offers open houses for guests of all ages to come and check out its amazingly detailed interior.

This special kids area features a “Star Wars,” “Toy Story,” and other Disney-themed areas. Personally, I don’t have children but from the looks of this place, I myself would have liked to been dropped off for one of the club’s programs.


For parents who are cruising for the first time and are curious of the spot, be sure to check out the club’s open houses which are offered throughout the cruise. This fun spot hosts different programs for kids aged 3 – 12.

10:00 am Breakfast – To build up our energy for the day we stopped at Cabanas. Some of the restaurant’s breakfast offerings included eggs over easy, sausage, bacon, fruits, cereals and many other delicious quick-service offerings.

This is also a great place to grab to-go snacks before heading out to the islands. Some of my personal favorite to-go snacks that were offered included bananas, apples, pears and other mixed fruits.

11:45 am Princess Meet and Greets – Located on the ship’s first floor, here was where I got to take pictures with Rapunzel, Cinderella, Tiana and Belle. One thing I must warn about any meet and greet with any Disney character aboard the ship is that you must check the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app ahead of time for times because the line wraps around the entire main floor.

Even at repeat times, the line will be extremely long. With the app you can check the times and locations of where they will be, so you can get there early and bypass the extended wait time.

1:00 pm Lunch at Royal Palace – The buffet at Cabanas is fine, but nothing beats a nice sit-down lunch with table service. The menu at Royal Palace is more limited for lunch time, but upon special request you can have just about anything.

When we were dining at the restaurant for lunch, the menu did not contain a lot of dairy free items that fit in line with my food allergy. But the waiter was more than willing to work with me to find something that would satisfy my hunger. He actually asked me what I was in the mood for and from that came a delicious grilled chicken dish over penne pasta and broccoli, topped with a sweet marinara sauce. The meal was delicious and most importantly, it was dairy free!

2:30 pm Mixology – I personally have never been a bar tender, but with this class I definitely felt like I could make any specialty cocktail. The experience teaches you how to make 3 specialty drinks, which you make with the instruction of an actual bartender aboard the ship. The best part of the experience though has to be the fact that you get to drink each drink you make.

If you’re on a budget or are just looking for a fun experience then this is definitely the class for you. The class is only $20 per person and in total, each guest receives 6 drinks. Three made by the bar and three by each guest.

One note I must make about this class is that reservations for it go very quickly. As soon as you book your cruise, be sure to go on the Disney Cruise Line portal to make a reservation for the class or you may not get to do it.

4:00 pm Midship Detective Agency – When you go on a cruise you generally want to take part in the most exciting and fun experiences the ship has to offer. However, there will be times when there isn’t something super exciting or interesting available and in those moments something like Midship Detective Agency is the thing to do.

For players aged 9 and up, this game transforms its players into detectives to help solve three unsolved cases aboard the Disney Dream.

These three cases include:

  • The Case of the Plundered Paintings
  • The Case of the Missing Puppies
  • The Case of the Stolen Show 

During our time on the ship, we took on The Case of the Missing Puppies.

Tasked with figuring out what happened to 99 missing little Dalmatians, we armed ourselves with a map and a unique barcoded detective badge to uncover clues found in interactive paintings hung throughout the ship.

By going to each interactive painting throughout the ship you discover new details and clues about each case. What is probably the coolest part of this experience is how the barcoded detective badge interacts with each painting. When holding the badge in front of each painting while stepping on a marker placed on the floor before it, you are able to interact with each painting, using the badge almost as a computer mouse.

It probably took us only about an hour to move around the ship and solve the case. Overall it is a fun experience, especially for young kids as the interaction between the barcode and each painting is pretty cool.

I would compare the game to Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World. Only with this game you receive just one card and you get to walk around in the nice air-conditioned interior of the ship and not the hot exterior of Magic Kingdom.

6:00 pm Dinner at Palo – For those who don’t know, Palo is one of the two premium dining options offered aboard the Disney Dream. And upon experiencing this scenic and luxurious restaurant that offers great food and drink options, I could see why.

Before you enter the restaurant you are taken to Meridian, a bar and lounge where you wait for your table to become available. Here is where you can choose from a list of wines and specialty cocktail drink options. Then once your table is ready a server comes into the bar and escorts you to your seat in Palo.

The dinner started with a selection of cold cuts and cheeses and then continued with a delicious three course meal. Similar to every other sit-down restaurant aboard, the waiter immediately came over and asked if any guests had any food allergies. Upon hearing mine the waiter went through the menu with me and discussed all of the options that were already prepared dairy free and what options could be altered.

I started with the Ciuppin Soup, made with mussels, shrimp, calamari, red mullet and monkfish poached in a garlic basil, white wine tomato broth. If you are a fan of seafood then this is certainly the option for you. What made the dish had to be the garlic basil and white wine tomato broth, which gave the seafood a nice savory flavor.

Then for dinner I got the Pennette Pasta, tossed in a spiced San Marzano basil sauce topped with garlic shrimps. Of the many offerings available at the restaurant this was one of the more plain options, but I must say it was delicious. The spiced San Marano basil sauce added a nice flavoring to the dish and the garlic shrimps were a nice addition to the pasta plate.

For dessert I got a delicious warm almond cake topped with powdered sugar, a special dairy free option. One recommendation for dessert I do have for those who do not have any food allergies is the Chocolate Soufflé, made with vanilla bean and chocolate sauce. Everyone at my table was raving how delicious it was and those who had experienced Palo in the past made it a priority to order it again because of how great it was.

8:30 pm “Beauty & The Beast” show – I am a big fan of the original film so I was very eager to experience this show. I must start by saying though with most entertainment offerings on this ship you must arrive extremely early. Especially when it comes to this show, which is the most popular of the three. In fact, of the three shows that played throughout the cruise at the Walt Disney Theater, the seating area had to be the most packed the night this show played.

Another tip for those who are really into seeing the nighttime shows is to choose the early dinner when booking your trip. Generally speaking, the second show at 8:30 pm is never as packed as the first and if you select the early dinner you should have more than enough time to make it to the theater with time to spare. The first show also usually has more children in the audience, which can lead to disruptions during the show.

Now, as for the show, it was by far the best of the three. The story of the classic film really comes to life in the Walt Disney Theater. With all of the show’s moving sets, video panel backgrounds, realistic props and talented cast, you can’t help but enjoy every second of it.

Even if you are someone who does not enjoy musicals or Broadway-style plays, I recommend you at least see this show if not any of the others. “Beauty & the Beast” featured the largest cast of the three shows and the best visual scenery. The show is a condensed version of the original film so it comes in at a little under an hour, but it includes all of the best parts and musical numbers from the film.

10:30 pm Pirate Night – The Disney Dream transformed into a pirate ship with actual pirates walking around the main pool deck. Guests aboard the ship were also encouraged to dress up in their pirate gear to join in on the celebration. The ship provided all guests with a red pirate bandana to wear during the special event.

The night also included captain Jack Sparrow and other characters from “Pirates of the Caribbean” performing a special stage show. The main show on deck featured captain Sparrow in an epic battle, which included stunt performers, music, dancing and a grand finale of fireworks at sea.

To get a good view for the show I recommend arriving early and finding standing room on deck 12 at the balcony. You can stand on deck 11 to see the stage show, but it can be very difficult to see the fireworks from this area. The fireworks are blasted into the sky over the right side of the ship, and from deck 11 you may find deck 12 blocking this view.

Overall it is a fun show and after the fireworks the main deck turns into a dance party.



11:15 pm Messy Karaoke – If you are still looking for more entertainment after Pirate Night and Beauty & the Beast and are not in the mood to just sit at a lounge and drink, then I recommend Messy Karaoke. This adult activity will have you and your shipmates laughing and singing along to some of the greatest music hits.

Anyone can sign up to sing from a long list of classic and current hit songs while enjoying delicious drinks in the Evolution lounge. As fun as this event is, keep in mind that it is only for adults 18+.

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