Disney Dream Cruise Ship: Overview and Things to Do

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Disney Dream launched the cruising arm of its empire in the late 1990s. However, after introducing its first two ships — Disney Magic and Disney Wonder — to the world, the cruise line took a little hiatus.

When Disney finally unveiled its third cruise ship and continuation of the fleet more than a decade later, the cruising industry had changed, and that’s exactly why you’ll notice a stark difference between the Disney Dream cruise ship and some of its older siblings.

Disney Dream is impressively larger than Disney Wonder and Disney Magic, and it has the added amenities to match. Think that a ship that debuted in the early 2010s is still too old for you, no matter if it was a step up from Disney’s other ships at the time? No worries. This ship offers its fair share of modern upgrades, thanks to a 2015 dry dock.

Here’s everything you need to know about this cruise ship, so you can see if it’s your family’s perfect fit for an upcoming vacation.

Disney Dream Stats

As mentioned, Disney Dream is quite a bit bigger than the Disney cruise ships that launched in the 1990s. While it’s by no means humongous, the ship isn’t that far off from being among the top 50 largest cruise ships on the planet (though it is admittedly about half the size of the current largest cruise ship(s) in the world). Disney Dream measures in at…

  • Gross Tonnage (GT): 130,000
  • Length: 1,115 feet 
  • Passenger decks: 14
  • Guest capacity: 4,000 people
  • Crew: 1,458 people
  • Staterooms: 1,250

Construction and History

Built by Meyer Werft, in Papenburg, Germany, Disney Dream launched in January of 2011. It was followed by Disney Fantasy in 2012. The two are in the Dream class. 

While Disney Dream does differ highly from Disney Magic and Disney Wonder in terms of size, the cruise line did keep some of its original design choices when building this third ship in the fleet.

You’ll still see the Art Deco and Art Nouveau stylistic choices throughout, as well as the hull art indicative of Mickey Mouse.

Disney Dream Atrium
Disney Dream Atrium (photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

While the ship is certainly sleek and beautiful, with a certain vintage appeal, there are still lots of classy and classic nods to Disney magic, such as the tile mosaics that depict moments from Disney films, and the bronze friezes on the balconies that depict Disney characters. 

Disney Dream received some new changes and upgrades in October 2015, over the course of a three-week dry dock. This allowed for upgrades to some of the children’s areas and dining options, as well as upgrades to adults-only areas. 

Staterooms

Disney Dream offers 1,250 staterooms (inclusive of suites), including 150 interior staterooms and 1,100 exterior staterooms. Of the exterior staterooms, nearly 200 offer ocean views, while just over 900 offer verandahs. There are 21 suites, all with verandahs.

The staterooms aboard Disney Dream really stand apart because of their size. Clearly designed with families in mind, these staterooms give everyone in your crew space to spread out.

Disney Dream Stateroom
Disney Dream Stateroom (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

Most staterooms feature dividing curtains and other smart design details to let parents and kids enjoy separate spaces, even when the kiddos have to go to bed a bit earlier. 

The interior staterooms feature a unique amenity that’s only available in interior staterooms. Called “magical portholes,” these are something you’ll see versions of on other cruise lines, but, here, they’re basically just screens designed to look like portholes, projecting the current-time outside view into your room. It’s a nifty little way to make an interior stateroom feel larger and less boxy. 

The ocean view rooms, however, offer actual views with actual windows. Verandah rooms offer spacious balconies with patio furniture. 

Suites

Disney Dream suites aren’t really called suites, but concierge staterooms, so keep that in mind as you book. These suite-style cabins are a little more luxurious and updated than the basic staterooms. The decor is a little more refined, too.

Disney Dream Suite
Disney Dream Suite (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

Guests in the large suites enjoy all sorts of extra amenities, including concierge services and access to suite guest-only areas of the ship. 

The biggest and the best of them all is the Disney Dream Royal Suite, with nearly 2,000 square feet of space (so probably larger than some travelers’ homes!), a kitchen, hot tub and separate dining space. 

Free Dining

Unfortunately, while Disney Dream is much larger than its prior Disney siblings, the cruise line didn’t use that extra space to add on a bunch of extra dining options, which is a shame.

Unlike cruise lines that are really known for their culinary offerings, Disney keeps its cruise ship restaurants limited to just a handful, with even fewer options if you don’t want to splurge for extra dining costs and you just want to stick to the free dining venues.

Still, even though your dining options will be limited on Disney Dream, what you do get at those restaurants is high quality, both in terms of ambiance and food. Since this is a Disney cruise line, of course, you can expect the dining experiences to be highly entertaining.

Royal Palace Dining Room
Royal Palace Dining Room (Photo Credit: Jimmy DeFl / Disney)

Do note that Disney implements a rotational dining program on its ship, which means you won’t get your pick of restaurant each night. Instead, you’ll be assigned to one of three main restaurants each evening, with a different menu and experience offered at each. The main dining rooms aboard Disney Dream are:

  • The Enchanted Garden
  • The Animator’s Palate
  • The Royal Palace

The Animator’s Palate restaurant is one you’ll find on other Disney cruise ships, and it follows an animation theme. Fittingly (or maybe not so much), since this restaurant incorporates characters from the popular movie Finding Nemo, you’ll find plenty of seafood on the menu.

Read Also: How Much Is a Disney Cruise?

The Enchanted Garden features a Versailles theme, while the Royal Palace is all princesses, all the time. Beyond the main dining rooms, free dining options include…

  • Cabana’s, the cruise ship’s buffet
  • Flo’s Cafe, serving casual bites in a cafeteria-style setting
  • Eye Scream, for self-serve ice cream

You can also get select room service options for free and suite guests have access to light bites in the concierge lounge. 

Specialty Restaurants

Disney Dream offers a few other restaurants that you can dine at if you’re willing to pay the extra cash. These include…

Palo
Palo (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)
  • Remy, a restaurant that was new for Disney Dream and that’s ultra-French, ultra-fancy, adults-only and designed by Michelin-star chefs
  • Palo, another adults-only restaurant, with Italian eats
  • Vanellope’s Sweets & Treats, a sweets store and ice cream shop that was added in 2015
  • Cove Cafe, for coffee, tea and cocktails
  • Preludes, for movie snacks 

Bars and Lounges

But while Disney Dream doesn’t have much in the way of dining options, you’ll find that you have more options when you start looking for a place to drink. Your options will include…

Skyline at The District
Skyline at The District (Photo Credit: Todd Anderson / Shutterstock)
  • Bon Voyage Bar, near the atrium
  • District Lounge, for live music
  • Pink, a very fun Champagne bar
  • 687 Pub, for all your sports bar fun (plus appetizers)
  • Skyline Lounge, for cocktails with digital views
  • Evolution, a nightclub
  • Cove Bar, for pool-side drinks
  • Meridian, a wine bar
  • Waves Bar, another pool bar
  • Currents Bar, and yet another pool bar

Many of these venues are situated in a part of the ship known as The District, on Deck 4, which is adults-only and the ship’s nightlife hub. 

Activities and Entertainment

You’ll find near-endless ways to play while aboard any Disney cruise ship, and the Disney Dream cruise ship is no exception. Here’s what you can expect. 

Theatrics Aplenty

Find Broadway-style shows that are both new and old at the Walt Disney Theater, with a heavy focus on Disney classic tales that you likely already know and love. If a theater of a different kind is calling your name, though, you can find the latest and greatest Disney flicks playing at the Buena Vista Theater.

Buena Vista Theatre
399-seat Buena Vista Theatre (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

Daily Activities

Like any cruise ship, Disney Dream offers cruisers a full schedule of activities during sea days. Think character visits, classes, family activities, games, and more. 

Pools

Both the kids and the adults will have their own pools to love, plus the main pool that’s suitable for the entire family. 

The primary pool deck is Deck 11 and there you’ll find two pools and hot tubs. There’s a toddler splash area for children on the younger side as well. Meanwhile, the Quiet Cove area is adults-only.

Quiet Cove Pool
Quiet Cove Pool (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

One of the best and most unique water features on this cruise ship, however, is the AquaDuck, which was an industry first when it debuted. The AquaDuck is a high-flying water roller coaster that’s a fan favorite. 

More Fun in the Sun

If you want to enjoy the great outdoors and ocean breezes without donning your swimsuit, though, you’ll find other outdoor spaces around the ship. 

There’s a modest sports court on Deck 13, offering basketball, soccer and volleyball, plus foosball and ping pong. A miniature golf course overlooks the water.

Disney Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Maria Maarbes / Shutterstock.com

A promenade on Deck 4 is a favorite walking spot, as is the walking track that’s situated around the sports court. Sun decks surround the pool. A 2015 addition, the Satellite Sun Deck is an adults-only sunbathing spot. Another exclusive sun deck is open to suite guests only. 

A Trip to the Spa

The cruise ship’s spa offers all your typical expected treatments and salon services. However, there’s also a teen spa called Chill, where teens can get massages, facials, hair treatments and more. 

For the smallest travelers in your crew, there’s the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, where younger kiddos can indulge in makeovers that reveal their inner superhero or princess. (And if you’re dying for a whimsical makeover yourself, just stop by during your cruise’s Pirate Night, when the boutique services adults, too.)

Shopping for Souvenirs

If you can’t leave a cruise ship without picking up some souvenir swag, you’ll find a few options at the retail outlets on this ship’s Deck 3. There, you’ll find typical Disney Store fare, but also the duty-free options that you expect to see on a cruise ship. Kids will find plenty to beg for, thanks to lots of Disney gifts, toys, costumes and more for sale. 

Disney Dream Kids Venues

There are five different Disney Dream kids venues:

  • It’s a Small World Nursery
  • The Oceaneer Club
  • The Oceaneer Lab
  • Vibe Teen Club
  • Edge Tween Club

The nursery provides babysitting services for children ages three months to 3 years. 

In the Oceaneer Club, children ages 3 to 12 can play with their favorite characters and reenact their favorite movies from the Disney universe. The Oceaneer Lab is a STEAM dream, with plenty to push children’s imaginations as they learn. These Oceaneer spaces received upgrades during the ship’s 2015 dry dock.

Captain Minnie Mouse
Captain Minnie Mouse (Photo Credit: Matt Stroshane / Disney)

Edge Tween Club, for kids ages 11 to 14, offers fun with all the latest tech your tweens know and love. 

Vibe carries that fun further, with gaming systems, video cameras and more at visitors’ disposal. Vibe also offers a private, teens-only sun deck with small water features, though no actual pool. 

Disney Dream Itineraries

Think that a Disney Dream cruise might just be your family’s perfect fit? See what upcoming itineraries are ready to sweep you away to the cruise destinations of your dreams.

FAQ:

When was Disney Dream refurbished?

Disney Dream received some new changes and upgrades in October 2015, over the course of a three-week dry dock. This allowed for upgrades to the children’s areas and dining options, as well as upgrades to adults-only areas.

How large is the Disney Dream cruise ship?

Disney Dream is quite a bit bigger than the Disney cruise ships that launched in the 1990s. Disney Dream measures in at 130,000 GT; a length of 1,115 feet; and 14 passenger decks. The ship can hold 4,000 guests and 1,458 crew members across 1,250 staterooms. 

Is there a water slide on the Disney Dream?

There is one traditional water slide on Disney Dream, but it’s intended only for kids. However, there is the AquaDuck, which is a water roller coaster, which offers similar thrills as a water slide.


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