With summer just around the corner, it’s getting to be one of my favorite times of the year – wedding (and honeymoon) season. Though my husband and I got married in the fall, the bridal events of spring make me wax nostalgic.
My husband and I got married on Anna Maria Island in October 2013. Prior to the wedding, we spent a few days at the Walt Disney World parks with my soon-to-be in-laws (another story for another time). Following the wedding events, we embarked on a 7-Day Western Caribbean cruise aboard the Disney Fantasy. In celebration of brides- and grooms-to-be, I thought I’d share some of my thoughts from our Disney Cruise honeymoon!
Time of Year
When planning your cruise, make sure you look at holiday calendars outside of the US. We managed to book our honeymoon the week of Canadian Thanksgiving which meant we cruised with a lot more children than we were anticipating, given we got married in the middle of October. We wouldn’t have moved our trip, but just would have had different expectations for our trip had we known.
When booking our cruise, I knew early on that I wanted to splurge on a stateroom with a verandah. I must say, I highly recommend it. We enjoyed being able to sit and listen to the peaceful ocean waves without the additional noises of cruise life. I particularly thought it was wonderful to be able to enjoy time together, taking in the salty sea air just the two of us.
So many things on a cruise are group activities (excursions, swimming, even meals) that it was really nice to be able to have the opportunity to sit on the private balcony and enjoy each other’s company for a while.
Palo & Remy
Prior to our cruise, I had mixed feelings about paying extra for one of these meals – considering all meals are included in the cost of the cruise. After much debating, I made us brunch reservations for Palo and I am so glad I did. This was hands-down our favorite meal! We were treated to a window-facing table with an amazing view. The food was phenomenal and there was a large variety! Plus, they garnered extra favor for with this decorated “Happy Honeymoon” plate.
I planned two activities for us prior to our cruise. Our first port,
after a day at sea, was Grand Cayman. I hadn’t booked anything for us that day, assuming we would want to sleep in and visit the island on our own time. We did look around some and visited a local coffee shop, but otherwise didn’t do much. Back on the ship, we heard everyone raving about different excursions they’d done so we decided we needed to look into adding a few excursions for the rest of our trip. We were luckily able to still add a few activities we were interested in. We rented dune buggies in Costa Maya and went on a Jeep tour in Cozumel. If it’s your first time visiting a location, excursions allow you to see the beauty of a given destination that you wouldn’t see otherwise. I strongly advise giving some real thought to the excursions offered and find some that match your family’s interests so you don’t end up like us, just aimlessly wandering in Grand Cayman.
One thing I wish we had done more of was exploring the adults-only areas. There is an adults-only pool area that we never made it to. We also are not big drinkers so we didn’t spend much time in the bar district, other than to meet up for our excursions.
Castaway Cay Couples Massage
I thought it would be incredibly romantic to plan a couple’s massage in a private cabana during our day at Castaway Cay. While I definitely enjoyed the massage, I think I would prefer to do the massage at the spa on the boat instead next time. Castaway Cay was our favorite destination and the massage took up over an hour of our limited time on the island. Plus, you are laying face down so you aren’t really getting the ocean view. As an important side note, being in the sun after using massage oil can be a VERY bad idea… even with applying sunscreen. Which brings me to my next point…
Seriously. Nothing can ruin the romance and splendor of your honeymoon like lobster-red skin and pain from the simplest of movements. Many cruise destinations are closer to the equator, where you are closer to the sun and are more likely to burn. If you’re like me, that means you need SPF 100,000!!! Be careful and reapply as necessary.
Enjoy your couple’s vacation, but Never Grow Up!