Disney Very Merrytime Cruise Day 3: Castaway Cay on Christmas Eve

December 24, 2016: We docked in one of my favorite places on the planet: Disney’s Castaway Cay. The skies were blue and the weather was perfect! What an amazing way to spend Christmas Eve Day!

Our room host surprised Lily the night before with a pixie dusting of Frozen Fever bed sheets! She loved seeing the surprise when we got to our room.

After getting our swimsuits on and heading to breakfast in Cabanas, we went to the family beach on Castaway Cay! We did take our stroller to help give us a hand with 2 kids, and beach gear. The kids had a great time in the sun, playing in the sand, and splashing in the water. Daniel fell asleep with me on a lounge chair under an umbrella after a fantastic lunch at Cookie’s BBQ on the island.

Storytime with Mrs. Claus

After we took a nap after a great beach day, we got ready for Christmas Eve and Night 1 of Hanukkah! First up was Storytime with Mrs. Claus in the Atrium at 4:30 p.m.. Mrs. Claus read to the families as we sipped on hot cocoa from a nearby sweet station.

And then… Mickey and friends appeared! This was a FANTASTIC character interaction as many people were still freshening up from Castaway Cay. There weren’t any lines and we went around the Atrium visiting with each character.

Hugs and an opportunity to get Goofy’s autograph.

Donald is always a favorite!

We hadn’t seen Chip & Dale yet, so this was great for them to sign our autograph book and photo matte.


After the Storytime and character visits, we went straight to the Hanukkah Candle Lighting in Cabanas at 5:15 p.m. The back-to-back evening events required some planning on my end to make sure I had what we needed for each event including bringing Hanukkah presents with me so I didn’t have to go back to the room.

Disney Cruise Line did a great job incorporating Hanukkah into this sailing.

Menorah at Guest Services

The view in Cabanas was amazing. They cleared out a section and left some chairs facing the water.

A beautiful sunset to mark the beginning of Hanukkah.

A rabbi on-board led the candle lighting, prayers and songs. Afterwards, the kids played dreidel. I brought my kids’ 1st night presents with us so they could open them. (Daniel fell asleep so he got to open his during dinner).

Christmas Eve

At 5:45 p.m. we went for our Christmas Eve dinner in Enchanted Garden. It was a standard rotational menu offering.

Afterwards, we headed to the show, the Golden Mickeys, and took photos with Mickey. It was fun to feel the magic in the air that occurs on Christmas Eve. Families taking photos all around the Atrium in their ugly sweaters, pajamas, or holiday best; or watching Moms and Dads pick out last minute gifts in the shops.

Daniel turned 10 months on 12/23 so I had to get a photo with Mickey to mark the occasion! I brought his monthly sign with us.

When we got back to our room to prepare for bed and a visit from Santa that night, we found a beautiful print, a box of chocolates and a cute towel animal (or ship perhaps?) waiting for us. The kids had their baths, got in their holiday pajamas, and we called room service to bring Cookies and Milk for Santa Claus.

Stay tuned for Day 4, when we celebrate Christmas Day at Sea!


Jaclyn Rhoads