Updated: Jun 27
Disney Cruise Line is a magical vacation on water. Currently, Disney has (4) ships that are part of their fleet (Magic, Wonder, Fantasy, and Dream). The Disney Magic is the first ship that set sail in 1998. Since then, the Magic has gone through a few refurbishments (the most recent being 2018). I've spent over 60 days on the Magic on various vacations and love the experience each and every time. Below, I'll share with you my full review on the Disney Magic including pros, cons, and more!
The Magic can accommodate 2,700 passengers with 875 staterooms. The ship staffs around 950 crew. The Magic is identical to the Wonder in size and design. I like both of these ships more than the newer Fantasy and Dream because it feels so intimate and isn't as overwhelming. For first time cruisers, you'll like the accessibility to everything and won't get lost (as much)!
Personally, I am in my 20s and have been traveling on Disney Cruise Line since I was 8 years old. I have always valued the experience and never felt that this cruise line was too childish or only geared towards young kids. It is truly a great place for families, couples, young adults, seniors, and everyone in between. There is something for everyone and that is why I love DCL so much!
A guestroom on a ship is called a "stateroom cabin". Disney has been known for having a more luxurious stateroom that is larger than other ships. The staterooms are practical, stylish, and designed with families in mind. Cabins have both US and European outlets, an empty mini-fridge, TV, sofa, two night stands, dresser, closet, cabinets, full length mirror, and more!
Pull Down Bunk Bed: To accommodate 4 family members, Disney designed their stateroom cabins with a bed, a couch that converts to a bed, and a top bunk that comes down from the ceiling when needed. The crew will assemble the beds each night and convert them back each morning to maximize your living space.
Split-Bathroom: A huge bonus is that Disney created two bathrooms in each stateroom - one features your toilet and sink, and the other features the shower/tub combo and another sink. This is great when traveling because one person can get ready using the mirror in one bathroom while the other guest takes a shower.
H2O Products: The shower products used onboard are H2O which is a wonderful brand. It works great for getting the sand out of your hair from a beach day or wiping away sunscreen and sweat.
Two Hair Dryers: One is built into the wall in the toilet-bathroom, and the other is in the desk drawer in the "living room" space.
Number of Rooms with Balconies: There are limited number of rooms with balconies so the rates are typically a high premium and harder to secure.
Quick Service Restaurants
The Disney Magic has great quick service options available at all times of the day. All of the food is unlimited and complimentary so you can have your cake and eat it too! Your choices are:
Cabana's - Large Buffet available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Daisy De-Lite's - Healthy snacks for breakfast/lunch like yogurts, fruits, sandwiches, etc
Pinocchio's Pizzeria - various pizzas with a mixture of toppings
Duck-In Diner - middle eastern style shwarma with lamb or chicken offerings
Eye Scream - soft serve (typically 2 or 3 flavors offered)
Cove Cafe - adult only cafe with pastries, coffees, and life hors
Room Service - (yes, room service is free too - although don't forget a tip), basic menu with salads, sandwiches, burgers, and pizza
Free Coca-cola Soft Drinks (other ships make you pay)
Large Variety: you have healthy options, different cuisines, and more
They're not open 24/7. Be mindful of the time so you can be sure to get the snacks you want!
Dinner (Rotational Dining)
All Disney ships feature Rotational Dining for dinner. This means that they will assign you what restaurant to eat in each night. You'll be given a dedicated server who will move to each restaurant with you. I personally love this feature because it gives you a change of scenery each night while keeping the same server! Over the course of your vacation, your server becomes part of your family!
There are two dining times offered (typically 5:45PM and 8:15PM). While half the ship is dining, the other half has the option to see the broad way worthy shows and entertainment. Then, they'll switch! This is a great way to control crowds in the evenings! If you have a preference on times, be sure to note this when booking your cruise.
The Disney Magic has (3) rotational dining restaurants for dinner.
(NEW) Rapunzel's Royal Table - this restaurant is all about a fun atmosphere, especially when characters from Tangled join you for a special experience!
Lumiere's - named after the candlestick in Beauty & The Beast, this restaurant is the fanciest and most upscale restaurant
Animator's Palate - this restaurant is on each Disney ship but varies drastically. On the magic, you'll draw a stick figure are the beginning of dinner to see it come to life on the walls later in the evening! The entire restaurant comes to life with animation and colors!
Different Vibes - experience completely new settings and moods in each restaurant
Same Server - like I said earlier, your server will truly begin to feel like family. it is is fun catching up with them each evening to learn about their day and tell them about yours!
You can't pick. You might get stuck in Lumiere's (the nicest restaurant) on Pirate Night. It's not that big of a deal, but you can't pick which restaurant to go to each night and that bothers some people.
This is my FAVORITE part of Disney Cruising. There is SO MUCH entertainment on the cruise ships that you will be making choices on what to do and keeping a busy schedule (if you want to see it all). Some of the entertainment options are below:
Movies (including any Disney movies currently in theatre)
Broadway Worthy Shows (more info below)
Pirate Night (includes a themed dinner, show, fireworks, and more)
Character Meet and Greets
Various Classes (orgami making, cooking, dancing, etc)
Each DCL cruise has a unique lineup of 3 Broadway-Worthy Shows. If your cruise is longer than 3 nights, the other nights will have various acts like magic shows, singing, and more! The Magic features these three shows:
Twiced Charmed: An Original Twist on The Classic Cinderella Story
Tangled: The Musical
Disney Dream's - An Enchanted Classic
In addition to the evening shows, Disney has some of their characters on board for meet and greets. You can get pictures and autographs with some of your favorites. There are also dance parties and get to gathers organized by the cruise line. You'll have a full list of activities even on a sea day that range from trivia to orgami making to dance classes and more!
PROS: Everything. It's perfect.
Pools & Outdoor Deck
If you're on a cruise, chances are you'll want to spend some time in the sun out on the deck. The Disney Magic features an open deck on the top with 3 pools: kiddie pool, family pool ("Goofys Pool"), and adult only pool ("Quiet Cove"). Each pool is rather small. The family pool is by far the most popular and can get extremely crowded on sea days. The family pool also has Disney Movie's playing on a large screen throughout the day, which is the best feature ever if you ask me.
The AquaDunk is a must do for kids and adults. This slide is straight down and drops you through a funnel - the floor literally opens up beneath your feet and boom, you're sliding down the water.
The top outdoor deck also has a basketball court, table tennis, shuffleboard, etc.
On Deck three, there is an outdoor track around the ship and shaded areas to sit out and relax.
Love the Disney movies that play over the family pool
Towels are always readily available
Food options are in close proximity
Pools are small and can get crowded.
Chairs are sometimes hard to come by.
Adult Only Benefits
Disney Cruise Line is a family-friendly cruise. But, that doesn't mean that everything is geared towards kids! There is an Adult Only pool area on the Magic. It is small, and kids can walk through the area. Personally, I prefer the main pool because it shows Disney movies while you're laying out and there is more people watching! Connected to this pool is Cove Cafe, which is an adult only coffee shop that has the news and books.
Another Adult only Benefit is Palo's Restaurant. This restaurant costs additional money and is considered very high tier. Get the finest food, wine, and ambiance here at Palo's. Dress code is strictly enforced and reservations are definitely necessary. Palo is open for brunch (SO GOOD) and for dinner.
Also on board the ship, there are adult only entertainment activities later in the evening. I've never been to keen of these but that's honestly because I'm exhausted after a jam packed day of actives and fun.
If you're cruising to Disney's private island, Castaway Cay, adults have their own beach called Serenity Bay. It is the picture perfect area to relax and enjoy the day in the sun. This beach has it's own dining area, rentals, cabanas, bar, and hammocks.
Designated areas that are quieter and more relaxing.
Serenity Beach is the best part of the Castaway Cay Island (without a doubt!!)
The newer ships (Fantasy and Dream) have nicer adult only areas.
These adult only areas are small and not "lively" like other cruises. They're mostly geared towards relaxation.
Overall, I LOVE Disney Cruise Line. The Magic is my favorite of the 4 current ships because of it's quaint size and classic attractions. It has everything you need on a ship and perfect for all ages. The food is great, the entertainment is amazing, and the service is top notch. I know that I will continue going on Disney Cruises for the rest of my life.