The one at castaway cay

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Monday, November 11, 2013

Friday, October 25th. Castaway Cay.

Time to talk about our last "real" day of vacation. While we were sad that the trip was coming to an end, our day on Castaway Cay was one of our favorites of the entire trip. Castaway Cay is Disney's private island in the bahamas.


Everything on the island is owned and operated by Disney Cruise Line, which makes the day incredibly stress-free. The ship docks on the island itself which makes getting on and off easy-peasy. All the food on the island is "free" (as if you were on the boat), and all the shopping and equipment rentals can be done using your room key. No need to rent umbrellas and beach chairs, they are free and abundant.


The day started out with me running the Castaway Cay 5k, while Andrew and Perry had some extra rest on the boat. It was hot. By the time we docked and got the race started it was past 10 am...in the bahamas...did I mention it was hot. I didn't run the whole thing, but I finished which is what mattered...and I felt slightly better about my eating habits for the previous 6 days.

Andrew and Perry were waiting on my at the finish line. After I recovered from the run and my body temperature cooled, we got to explore the island. Everything is super convenient (Disney has only really developed 55 of the 1000 acres), and they even have a tram that will take you from one end of the island to the other. We snagged one of these cute little wagons to help tote Perry and our bags around. Perry had so much fun riding in the wagon and seeing the sights. I think he is ready for some wagon strolls around the neighborhood.




We got to see Mickey and Minnie dressed up in their best beach gear.


     


Perry played for a long time at the Spring-a-leak splash pad. I mentioned before how much he loved the splash pad on the boat, and this was no exception. He literally cried when we picked him up to go.





No fear!

We ate lunch on the island, they had tons of option set up buffet style, as well as free-flowing soft serve ice cream.  After lunch we watched some crab races. It is exactly what it sounds like.



And watched some big kids go down the Pelican Plunge (water slide in the ocean).

We played in the ocean for a while. Perry surprisingly loved the sand and surf. There was absolutely no real "surf" or waves so P could sit at the edge of the water and play.



     





Can't you tell how much the kid loves the beach?

We had to stop for a Team Gary photo op! Little did we know so much was going on with Team Gary back home, with the trip to MD Anderson and new diagnosis, we were completely oblivious and disconnected. What great news to come home to though.


Perry was totally worn out by mid-afternoon and fell asleep on Andrew's shoulder. We thought about going back to the boat for a nap, but decided instead to create a pallet of towels on a shady beach chair and let him nap on the beach. 



He slept a good hour or two and we kept nudging the chair backwards to keep him in the shade. When he finally woke up, he seemed so very confused as to where he was...and then snuggled in for a little more nap with mommy.



We ran into a certain villain, Captain Hook, and his sidekick Smee. Hook immediately pointed to Perry's red hair and signaled to Smee and his handler that P reminded him of Peter Pan...and that he would have to keep his eyes on him. :) Perry wasn't even the least bit scared of the frightening man with a hook for a hand.



Castaway Cay was so fun! I would have been more than happy to stay docked there another day or two.

We went back on board the boat about 3 to get cleaned up and ready for dinner. And we began to get panicked about the fact that we were disembarking the next morning and had to have our bags packed and in the hall by 10 pm. It did feel a little strange to not have a sea day as the last day. We got a little packed before dinner and knew we had some time afterwards while Perry was in the nursery.

On the way to dinner we ran into our favorite chipmunk friends.

     


Dinner the last night was back in Animator's Palate and it was our turn to see (and be a part of) the Animation Magic show. When you sit down at your table you are presented with a worksheet and a marker to quickly doodle a cartoon character. Then later in the meal your character comes to life up on the big screens around the restaurant in classic disney cartoons.

Inside Animators Palate, Love the chairbacks

Our table, #39, right next to a bigscreen

The characters from our table, come to life

This was Andrew's, interacting with Mickey Mouse


At the end of the show, everyone's names show up in the credits as Guest Animators. And you get your worksheet back with an "official animator" stamp. It was pretty cool. Andrew and I actually had dinner reservations at Palo on the last night at 7. We didn't want to miss the animation show and still needed to feed Perry, so we decided to just go to both dinners and just feed Perry at the first. We had to rush out of dinner number 1 to get P to the nursery and make our Palo reservation, but stopped by to say goodbye to our sweet Head Waiter, Lubo, who went out of his way to make sure P always had good food to eat.


Dinner at Palo was amazing. We had the same waiter from our Palo brunch experience which was fun. He was awesome and pretty much combined several dishes together to give us lots of great foods to try. "You have to eat pasta in an Italian restaurant, but I don't want it to be your main dish...so I will bring you the filet with lobster ravioli on the side, ok?" "OK!" The highlight of the meal was dessert and this lovely chocolate souffle, that had been "souffle-ing" since the beginning of the meal. Amazing. Glad I ran that 5K that morning.


After our dinner number 2, we went back and finished packing, got our bags tagged and in the hall by the 10:00 deadline, and went to pick up P from the nursery. Then it was off to bed because we had to be at breakfast (back in Animator's Palate, or wherever you dined the night before) at 6:45 am.

The next morning was pretty uneventful. Ate breakfast. Picked up our photo CD. Casually made our way off the boat (since our flight was not until evening). And flew home.

Final thoughts about the trip. We loved it. And will absolutely cruise Disney again. And will cruise other cruise lines again too. There were lots of really cool aspects to it, being Disney. The AquaDuck (on board water "coaster") above the pool deck was very cool. We have no pictures because well, Andrew and I had to take turns riding it while the other one had the baby.

Now the question is where to go next? We will see. We booked a "dummy date" while onboard, and have 3 years to use it. Hmmm...

When we booked the trip I thought that cruising would be a simple and easy way to travel with a baby, and I will stand by that assessment. Having everything (food, lodging, activities) all within steps was great. And the staff and cast members were incredibly accommodating and doted on P all week long.

Thanks for sticking with me while I have posted a ridiculous number of pictures and talked about Disney for almost 2 weeks straight. Now it is officially back to the real world.

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