Day 1, Thursday, January 11

Yesterday we drove from our home in Kingston, Ontario to the Holiday Inn Express adjacent to the airport in Buffalo, New York.  We stopped along the way to have lunch in Burlington with our good friends Roy and Patty Kirby and then carried on.  After a short stop at the casino in Niagara Falls we crossed the border.  I simply cannot drive by the Disney Store at the Walden Galleria Mall, but it was a short visit, and we were checking in to the hotel by 5:00 p.m.  After getting settled, we had a nice dinner at the nearby Olive Garden restaurant.  

Thursday the alarm woke us up at 5:15 a.m. and we hit the ground running.  We were down in the hotel lobby by 5:50 a.m. to catch the shuttle to the Buffalo airport. Our flight was at 7:25 a.m. and we were on the runway by 7:36 a.m. We arrived at Orlando International 15 minutes early, grabbed our luggage, hopped in the town car and checked into Port Orleans French Quarter by 11:30 a.m. Our room wasn’t ready so we caught the bus over to Animal Kingdom and had lunch at Tusker House. 


After lunch we walked over to Kilimanjaro Safari, it was pretty much a walk on, the crowds were so light. We saw more animals than we ever have before. The cheetahs were right out front and roaming around, the giraffes were also wandering close to the ride. 

Elephant on the Kilimanjaro Safari ride.

The zebras were "front and centre" today

After that we walked over to Asia and Gary rode the Kali River Rapids.  I chose to stay dry.  When he walked up to me after the ride I asked him if he actually fell out of the raft; he was soaked. We then went on to Expedition Everest and went through the singles line, again we walked right on. We wanted to see the new Nemo show but we had an hour wait so we went to Dinoland and played some of the games, we had never done that before and it was fun. I won 3 stuffed animals; they will go home for Zak. 

We played several of the arcade games for the first time

My chaufffeur is a genuine dinosaur

We walked over to the theatre where Nemo is playing and arrived just as they opened the doors. We had seen the show when we were here for Mousefest but it seemed a bit different to me this time, I really do like it. After the show we caught the bus back to Port Orleans French Quarter and our room was ready, #3341.  This is the first time we have been in building 3, it is quite handy to the main building.

 We got into the room and while I unpacked Gary tried to get the internet working but he could not get a connection so the hotel promised a service man would come by to see what the problem was; in the mean time we left to catch the boat to Downtown Disney for dinner.

 We ate at Captain Jack’s, it was always one of our favourite places to eat when at Downtown Disney but they have changed the menu and it was not the same, we probably won’t be going back there. We did a bit of shopping and then caught the boat back to POFQ; it was so nice to be able to take the boat rather than the bus, very relaxing. Gary spent a while in the hot tub and we both crashed for the night.

Day 2, Friday, January 12

We were a little slow getting up, it was nice to be able to take it easy, we showered and dressed and then went down to the food court for breakfast. It was a beautiful day so we ate outside. I had the beignets, they are so good. After breakfast we took a leisurely walk over to Riverside, it is such a nice walk along the Sassaguola River, the scenery is beautiful. We walked around the mansions along Magnolia Bend and then over to Fulton’s to look through the store.

A prety gazebo at Port Orleans Riverside

A bridge over the Sassagoula River at Port Orleans Riverside

Back at the Port Orleans French Quarter dock

One of the many courtyard fountains at Port Orleans French Quarter

We took the riverboat back to the French Quarter and went to our room to get our bathing suits on. It was such a nice day we decided to spend some time at the pool; we both had a swim and then found a couple of lounge chairs that were calling out to us. When we had enough lying around we grabbed some lunch and ate it at the pool, then went to the hot tub. We commented a couple of times how nice it was to just relax and enjoy the resort. We went back to the room and had a little nap and then got ready to go to EPCOT. We walked over to the bus stop just as the bus was pulling in, it was good timing.  

When we got to EPCOT we rode Spaceship Earth and then walked over to Finding Nemo, it is a very cute ride. The next stop was Living With the Land, we rode the boat with the new automated narration, it is much better, and you can actually hear and understand the commentary. The wait time for Soarin was an hour and the fast pass was closed for the day so we continued on to World Showcase. 

A perfect day at EPCOT Having a wonderful time . . .

We took our time so that we arrived at Japan in time for dinner. We both really like Teppanyaki and we had a great meal, we sat with a family from Maryland and enjoyed dining with them. After dinner we continued the walk around World Showcase and then went over to Mission Space. We rode the green side. We thought about trying Soarin again but the wait time was still too long so we decided to beat the crowd and catch the bus back to POFQ. It was a nice relaxing day.

Waiting for dinner at Japan We really enjoy the meal at Tepanyaki

Day 3, Saturday, January 13

We got off to a lazy start again today.  After a bite of breakfast at the Sassagoula Float Works we decided to head for the Magic Kingdom . . . then I thought it would be nice to spend a few hours at the pool . . . then I thought we needed to go to the Magic Kingdom.  I think the pressure of all these vacations is making me go a little bit loopy.

So after some waffling, we were on the bus heading to the Magic Kingdom by 10:00 a.m.   As we entered the park, the horse drawn trolley was sitting in front of the train station and it was totally empty.  We hopped on and had a ride all by ourselves to the castle forecourt. 

All alone on the horse drawn trolley! I could get spoiled  . . . no - wait! I already am!!
Our driver Bill

Next stop was Snow White’s Scary Adventure.  We picked up a fast pass for Peter Pan and walked over to the Haunted Mansion.  Ezra Ghost joined us for the last part of the Haunted Mansion ride.  



On our way over to Pirates of the Caribbean we stopped for a spin around the Rivers of America aboard the Liberty Belle.  By the time we got to the Pirates attraction the line was 70 minutes long . . . the new movies and the addition of Cap’n Jack Sparrow has certainly revitalized this classic old ride; they now need to add a fast pass.  We decided to pass on the ride for this trip and we wandered over to Pecos Bill’s for a burger.  We just love their “fixin’s bar” but sadly, they no longer have the cheese sauce.


The Liberty Belle
Carol at the second deck rail of the Liberty Belle Big Thunder Mountain Railway seen from the Liberty Belle

After lunch we stopped at Jungle Cruise to pick up a fast pass and then shopped our way out of the park and went back to the hotel.  We spent the afternoon swimming, sunning and napping.

On our way through Liberty Square we met this bluegrass band
A spire of Cinderella Castle shot from the entrance to Adventureland

We had a dinner reservation for Tony’s Town Square Restaurant at 5:45, so we hopped back on the bus at 4:30 and arrived back in the park in about 20 minutes. With some time on our hands before dinner Gary went over to Buzz to get a fast pass and I wandered through the stores. When our time for dinner arrived we checked into Tony’s Town Square and were promptly seated. I was very pleased with the meal, it is one place we had never eaten at before but will certainly return another time. After dinner we went directly to Buzz Light Year and Gary beat me again; then we walked over to ride Peter Pans Flight. As we were walking over to the Jungle Cruise SpectroMagic was just passing by so we stopped to watch the parade. When the parade was over we took a chance that Pirates might not be busy since everyone would be getting a good spot for the fireworks.  We were right, it was a walk on. We then rode Jungle Cruise before heading out of the park.


Once back at the resort I started getting everything packed up while Gary went to the hot tub. The luggage has to be ready for pickup by 8 a.m. and since we have been very "lazy butts" this trip I decided to request a wake up call just in case. I imagine my excitement will have me up early but better to be safe than sorry.

Cinderella Castle at night

Day 4, Sunday, January 14

Boarding the bus to Port Canaveral

The wake up call woke us up; we had to be ready by 8:00 a.m. for luggage pickup. We went to the Sassagoula Floats for breakfast and then did a bit of wandering around. It started to rain, not heavy, more like a mist but it didn’t last long. We had to meet in the lobby for 11:45 so we had a couple of hours to wait, not enough time to really do anything so we just sat there waiting. 

At 12:00 noon we boarded the Disney Cruise bus and off we went to Port Canaveral. 


Inside the terminal at Port Canaveral

Port Canaveral terminal seen from our stateroom

We got checked in at the terminal and then boarded the ship; it is very awesome!!! We went first to get reservations for Palo and then went to our stateroom to unload our carry-on stuff. We walked around the ship getting oriented. At 4:00 o’clock we participated in the emergency drill. 

Sailing out the harbour . . .

Do we look happy?

There are Mickey's everywhere

Emergency drill

As soon the emergency drill was over we wandered some more and then went to the show at the Walt Disney Stage. It was a comedy act and very good. After the show we went back to the stateroom to get dressed for dinner.  There was a lot of motion on the ship, the waves were reported at 8 feet, I didn’t experience any motion sickness but I was walking like a drunken sailor.   


We had or first dinner at Parrot Cay and sat with two other couples, they were both from California. After dinner we went to soak in the hot tub and then all thoughts of going to bars were gone and we just crawled into bed and fell asleep.

Heading to dinner at Parrot Cay Our dinner companions, Fred and his daughter Lynne and newlyweds Jim and Emily
Carol and Mickey at Studio Sea The grand staircase at Triton's

Day 5, Monday, January 15

We both woke up early and decided we would get dressed and go up to deck 9 with the laptop and check our mail. When we got done with that we went up to deck 10 and could see that we were very close to Nassau so we just stayed there and watched as the ship was backed into the bay. Pretty impressive I must say. We then went to the Beach Blanket Buffet for breakfast. After breakfast we went back to the stateroom and got ready for our Discover Atlantis excursion. We then went to WaveBands to meet up with the tour guide. The drive to Atlantis was about 20 minutes and the walk from the bus depot was another 20 minutes so by the time we got there it was noon and very hot. We toured the aquariums, saw the swimming pools and lagoon and then finished off the tour in the Casino.

Re-boarding the Wonder Nassau ship terminal

We both decided we didn’t need to see anymore so we took the shuttle back to where the ship was docked and just wandered through a few shops before boarding. It was very hot so we got our  swim suits on and went to deck 9 for a swim. After spending some time in the 84 degree pool we were pretty much done, so back to the room for a short nap.



Nice lines you got there fella!
A couple of friends we met on the way to dinner

When we woke up we immediately headed down to deck 3 for the show at the Walt Disney Theatre, it was Hercules this night and it was very good, lots of laughs and great music.

Before going to Triton’s for dinner we got some photos taken and wandered around for a bit. Dinner at Tritons was very good, much better than Parrots Cay. After dinner we tossed around the idea of going to some of the bars but once again the hot tub and heated pool won out, so we spent about an hour on deck 9 before returning to the room. It was a great day but I think if we ever do this again I will pass on the ground excursions and just stay on the ship.

Day 6, Tuesday, January 16

The noise from the engines woke us up about 6:45 a.m.  I got up and looked out over the water and there it was, Castaway Cay. We got up and watched the island draw closer; it is a pretty amazing site. The Flying Dutchman was anchored in the bay, which was pretty cool. We went to Tritons for breakfast and decided that this is the place we should have breakfast again, very nice.

The Flying Dutchman

As soon as we were done with breakfast we went back to the stateroom and got our duds for Castaway Cay, we disembarked from deck 1 and proceeded to the tram, stopping to have a look in the post office.  We hopped on the tram that took us to the hub of the island, there we picked up our snorkel gear and walked through the little shop. We then took the next tram to Serenity Bay, the adult only swimming area. The tram ride to the beach was beautiful, the bougainvilleas were in full bloom and the colours were breath taking. We got off the tram and literally walked into Paradise, what a beautiful place. We found a couple of benches and a hammock and set up for the day. When I first walked into the water I found it very cold but as the day went on and the sun beat down on us, the water became more pleasant. About 11:00 o’clock we took the tram back over to the snorkeling lagoon and swam around looking at fish and trying to find Mickey at the bottom of the sea. We found him and I took a few underwater pictures before we swam back into shore. We handed our gear in and went back to our private beach for lunch. What a great bbq they put on, enough food to stay a week, gosh I wish we could.

We swam some more and then decided that we had enough sun so we wandered back to the ship just in time for a nice relaxing nap after a great day in the sun. Castaway Cay is just amazing.

Our little piece of paradise
The landscaping is just amazing

Gary lost the fishing contest

The Wonder seen from Castaway Cay Hook and Smee fighting over our booty

After our well-earned nap we headed to the Walt Disney Theatre for the gala “Golden Mickey’s” award ceremony.  This is a lavenous celebration of Disney movies and characters presented in a series of “high action” vignettes of song and dance.  This rousing musical presentation is not to be missed.  Following the show we had a photo taken with Pirate Goofy and then headed to Triton’s for dinner.

This was “Pirates in the Caribbean” party night and most people dressed in pirate costumes for dinner.  There were plenty of pirate-like sneers and “Arrrrgh’s” throughout the dining room.  The crew put on a dance show in the dining room and persuaded many guests to join in the Conga-Limbo-Arrrrgh’s dance line.  A very entertaining performance to wrap up a good meal.

The pirate party continued on the two upper decks, a great deal more song and dance with Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Chip, Dale, Hook, Smee and a host of dancers.  Wow!

We were sooo tired from all the dancing (it just wears Gary down watching all that activity) that we had to have a dip in the hot tub to loosen up before bed.

Day 7, Wednesday, January 17



This was an "at sea" day so we didn’t have to rush off in the morning; the only thing we had planned was brunch at Palo. We strolled around the promenade on deck 4 and then hopped on the elevator to deck 10.

Brunch at Palo

 We arrived at Palo about 10:00 a.m. and we were seated immediately. Our server gave us the tour of the buffet and then turned us loose on the food. It is an excellent restaurant; I would highly recommend it to anyone going on a Disney Cruise. 

After the brunch we went back to our cabin and got changed before going to the Walt Disney Theatre for the dissembarkment information. 


Decor in the "Treasure Ketch" shop
Daisy at the Quiet Cove Pool

When we were done that we got our bathing suits on and went to the pool. It was extremely hot so we kept to the shade and spent a lot of time in the water. We were fading fast so we went back to the cabin for a nap.


Before we went to the evening show we stopped to have our picture taken with Captain Jack Sparrow. The evening show was Disney Dreams and it was very very good, I have to say that the entertainment on the ship was way above my expectations, all the shows were awesome. 

The Animator's Palate

After the show we got dressed for dinner and made our way down to the Animator’s Palate.  This is the room that changes colour as the evening progresses; it was fun to watch. The dinner was very good; I think I liked this restaurant the best. 

We finished dinner quite late so we had to rush back to the room so that we could get our luggage out the door for pickup by 11:00 p.m.  We made it, but just barely. The ship was really rocking by this time so I decided I wouldn’t bother with the hot tub but Gary was up for it. I went down with him and watched as he bodysurfed in the pool, the waves on the pool had to be 3 to 4 feet high. When we got back to the room I finished up some last minutes paper work for customs, we had to be there at 6:00 a.m. so I also requested a wakeup call.  

Day 8, Thursday, January 18

We were up and getting ready to go to customs at 5:45 a.m.  The whole process went very well and we were back in our room by 6:45 a.m.  I finished up the last of the packing and we went for breakfast at Animators Palate. As soon as we were finished breakfast we had to leave the ship.  We walked into the terminal and found our luggage and then got in the shuttle that took us back to Port Orleans French Quarter.

We checked into the resort and our room was ready, a ground floor room close to the hot tub. After we got settled in we went out to the bus stop and caught the bus to MGM Studios. We enjoyed a variety of street performers, rode the Tower of Terror, went to see Lights Camera Action, rode the Back Stage tour, saw the Muppets 3D.

Lightning McQueen dropped by for a photo-op

Gary and Tow Mater

Gary went to the moon of Andor and then we watched the Little Mermaid. We had reservations at PrimeTime Café and I ordered my usual, Pot Roast. By now we were both exhausted so we went back to the resort for an early night.  

Day 9, Friday, January 19

Tiffany Town Car - Southwest Flight 2751 Orlando to Buffalo