DISNEY CRUISE LINE NEWS: Itineraries and Pricing Released for Disney Wish!!

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Have you heard the exciting news about Disney Cruise Line’s new ship, the Disney Wish? It is going to set sail next summer, 2022, and bookings open May 17 for select groups. The dates for booking are as follows:

Platinum Castaway Club Members with 25 or More SailingsMay 17, 2021
Platinum Castaway Club Members with 20 or More SailingsMay 18, 2021
Platinum Castaway Club Members with 15 or More SailingsMay 19, 2021
All Platinum Castaway Club MembersMay 20, 2021
Gold Castaway Club MembersMay 24, 2021
Disney Vacation Club Members and Adventure InsidersMay 25, 2021
Silver Castaway Club MembersMay 26, 2021
General PublicMay 27, 2021
Special Booking Policies for Maiden Voyage Only
Guests looking to book the very first sailing aboard the Disney Wish on June 9, 2022 should take note of the following:

Payment: A non-refundable deposit of 20% must be paid by 11:59 PM Eastern Time on the day of booking. Final payment for suites and concierge-level staterooms is due 150 days prior to setting sail; final payment for all other stateroom types is due 120 days prior to setting sail.

Cancellation Fees: A 50% cancellation fee applies from 44 to 30 days prior to setting sail. A 75% cancellation fee applies from 29 to 15 days prior to setting sail. A 100% cancellation fee applies from 14 days to the date of setting sail.

Restrictions: The Castaway Club member must remain on the reservation to be valid. Date changes are not permitted once a booking is made; Guests must cancel and rebook. Booking cannot be combined with any other offers, discounts or future cruise credits.

If you are interested in sailing on the Disney Wish, contact me now to get on the waitlist. This is a brand new ship, and sailings will fill up fast! So let’s talk about the ship itself! IT’S SO EXCITING!

For the first time in Disney Cruise Line history, guests will be able to reserve a stay in the Disney Wish Funnel Suite! This suite is IN THE FUNNEL of the ship. Via Disney: ” With nearly 2,000 square feet of living space, including a spacious upper-level loft, the Wish Tower Suite will sleep up to eight guests with two main bedrooms, a children’s room, a library that converts to a bedroom, and four-and-a-half bathrooms. The magnificent living room will be flanked by an open dining area and a bar, all offering extraordinary views across the upper decks to the horizon through an expansive two-story window wall.” I’m pretty sure that’s bigger than my house!

Photo: Disney
Photo: Disney

Guests in the Tower Wish Suite will receive a personal concierge team, a private elevator, and more!

The rest of the suites on the Disney Wish are jaw dropping, too, and all feature fairytale theming. There are Tangle-inspired rooms, Little Mermaid-inspired rooms, and more!

Another first for Disney Cruise Lines, the AquaMouse will be the first ever attraction at sea. You will ride through the cartoon “Scuba Scramble,” where you will travel over the ship and blast through over 60 special effects in a two-seater raft. There will also be a brand new Toy Story-themed water play area and plenty of pool space for all. Not to mention sports and recreation.

Maiden Voyage pricing for a family of 2 adults, 2 children

If you are interested in the Maiden Voyage or any other sailings on the Disney Wish, OR any cruises on any of Disney Cruise Lines ships, contact me today! Cruise itineraries are now posted through Summer 2022!

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Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

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Read Time:3 Minute, 46 Second

So you think you know all about Big Thunder Mountain. Maybe you do, maybe you don’t. Let’s take a deeper look. Big Thunder Mountain was originally meant to be a water ride, called Western River Expedition. Marc Davis, the Imagineer responsible for animatronics on Jungle Cruise, Pirates of the Caribbean, and more, designed the Western River Celebration to be a celebration of the wild west. Imagineers feared that with Florida being so close to the Caribbean, people wouldn’t be interested in pirates, so Davis wanted to create something unique. It would have taken guests through everything from the prairie wilderness to a classic western town to an escape from bandits down a waterfall. Davis envisioned an entire pavilion, featuring other attractions, including hiking trails, pack mules, and a runaway train.

Instead, guests arrived at the Magic Kingdom wanting to know where the pirates were, so Imagineers quickly built the Pirates of the Caribbean. That meant there wasn’t enough money left to build Davis’s original pavilion. Enter Tony Baxter (and before you ask, yes, Marc Davis and Tony Baxter are two of my three very favorite Imagineers).

First they built the stone mesas. Looks like a big pile of stone, right? In actuality, Big Thunder Mountain is 6,500 tons of steel, 90,000 gallons of water, 4,675 tons of mud, and 4,000 gallons of paint. Tony Baxter and the Imagineers took the train ride, that was originally meant to be a minor accompaniment to the main water ride, and turned it into the main attraction.

The Wildest Ride in the Wilderness has a height requirement of 40″. The Magic Kingdom’s version is a near exact replica of the Disneyland version, but it is about 25% bigger and has just a smidge more track. You may have noticed that there is are rainbow colored caverns. This is a nod to the Rainbow Caverns Mine Train, the ride Big Thunder replaced in Disneyland. And at Walt Disney World, you can find Mine Shaft #71, a nod, of course, to the opening date of the Magic Kingdom: 1971.

Of course, the Big Thunder Mining Company is owned by Barnabus T. Bulion (T is for Tony, as in Tony Baxter), and Barnabus excavated the mine, even though the locals believed it to be haunted. There were runaway trains, after all!! So the mountain is haunted, in case you didn’t know.

The ride façade is modeled after Monument Valley in Utah and Arizona. The trains go 36 MPH (by comparison, Space Mountain only goes 28 MPH), and the ride operates with 6 trains. The Trains are I.M. Brave, I.B. Hearty, I.M. Fearless, U.B. Bold, U.R. Courageous, and U.R. Daring.

Some notable details that you should try to find:

  • the mining equipment around the mountain is real. It was meant to make you think you were really visiting an abandoned mine
  • Dallas McKennon, the voice of Ben Franklin at American Adventure, voices the safety announcements (he does the announcements for many other rides, too. See if you can tell which announcements are his!)
  • While you are in the line queue, you can set off actual explosions in the mountain
  • look for a crate meant to be shipped to Fire Chief Richard Le Pere Jr. He is the real fire chief of Reedy Creek, the fire department that services Walt Disney World
  • have you ever been in the Tiki Room and wondered what happened to the canary Rosita? Jose brings up that she seems to be gone. Well…..there is a canary cage in the ventilation room in the ride queue. It is labeled Rosita. Canaries, of course, were used to check for toxic gases in mines
  • in addition to animatronic animals, see if you can find the old man in pink pajamas in the bathtub!
  • look for hidden Mickeys! You can find them in the groups of cacti and the gears toward the end of the ride
View from the top of one of the hills in the Magic Kingdom

Of course, about a decade and a half later, Frontierland received a second mountain featuring….a water ride, just a little bit like the entire pavilion originally envisioned by Marc Davis. Pro tip #1: try to ride in the day AND AGAIN at night. It’s a completely different experience riding at night. Along with absolutely amazing views, it just feels faster and more wild! Pro tip #2: try to ride in the back. It’s absolutely crazy!

Is Big Thunder Mountain a must do for your family?

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