For the past three years, my family has taken a three-night Very Merrytime Bahamian cruise the weekend before Thanksgiving on the Disney Dream. These are the only cruises we have taken as a family with DCL. Our family of four includes me, my husband, and two boys ages 16 and 11. The moment you walk into the atrium, you are greeted by crew members in their holiday scarfs, welcoming your family aboard. The lobby is beautifully decorated with a large tree and garland adorning the railing. There is also a gingerbread house across the atrium from the ship entrance. The special part of this cruise for me is posing for pictures with the characters in their holiday wear. This provides many opportunities to create family Christmas photos. In the evenings, many families who are either dressed up for dinner or in matching pajamas will gather in the atrium to take a photo for their family Christmas card.

Christmas Minnie

We made a reservation for the princess meet and greet, which is definitely the way to go. We were in and out of the line in five minutes meeting Rapunzel, Tiana, and Belle in her Christmas dress. We even caught Stitch in his cute Christmas theme Hawaiin print shirt and Donald in his Christmas sweater.

Holiday Stitch

Our first stop in Nassau, we usually just walk around town for a few hours, there are no Christmas decorations on the streets near the port.  We usually take this day as a time to explore ship activities. Last year, my boys did the virtual sports simulator which allows you to play golf, baseball, and other fun sports activities. We also enjoyed other sports activities on Goofy’s sports deck as a family such as mini-golf and foosball. We finished off our afternoon with the featured movie Frozen 2, which had just been released in theatres.

Our Castaway Cay day begins with the family 5K run. It is a fun, free family activity, and a great start to our day. The running course takes you along the bike path and down the airstrip to the adult beach. It is a good activity to become familiar with the island.

As you disembark the boat at Castaway Cay, there is a large tree with a sleigh providing another opportunity for fun photos, especially with the “snope” flowing. Walking around Castaway is jolly with the Christmas music flowing in the trees.

Sleigh at Castaway

What’s the weather like during the mid-end of November? Leaving Port Canaveral has been different each year, but we have never had a need for a jacket. Our Nassau day has always been beautiful with lots of sun and warmth. I would recommend bringing water with you if you plan to walk around town. Castaway Cay day is hot as well, with temperatures ranging in the 80s. But as warm as you may get, the water is too cool for me, but many others jump right in and enjoy the ocean and water activities. The island provides drink machines at the food locations, so water and soda are plentiful and complimentary. 

Castaway from our balcony

For our family, this cruise has been a great way for us to kick off the Christmas season. We usually spend a night on Walt Disney World property before the cruise and a few nights after as well. Disney during the Thanksgiving break has become part of our annual holiday tradition.

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