What’s this?! What’s this?!
Jack and Sally, of course, onboard the most magical cruise ship this side of Halloween Town!
We cruise with Disney often, but this had to have been one of our favorites. Anytime Disney and themes/holidays are combined into one setting it’s pretty much guaranteed to be a great time. We made so many amazing family memories that we’ll always treasure, so much that we are possibly planning a future Halloween cruise for next year!
The Fall and Halloween vibes greet you from the moment you step through the lobby atrium. There are pumpkin and fall decorations filling the entire atrium of decks 3, 4, and 5 (most of them Mickey Mouse shaped, duh). And right smack dab on the main floor of the main deck 3 atrium is a whimsical tree (reminiscent of Grandmother Willow from Pocahontas) with long branches sprouting from all sides.
This tree serves as the focal meeting point for all major Halloween activities, and “magically” begins to sprout more and more pumpkins as the cruise goes on, becoming completely full in pumpkin bloom by the end of the cruise. It’s one of the highlights to watch it bloom throughout, and to start it’s growth with the story of the Pumpkin Tree enacted by the “caretaker” on the first night.
Some of our favorite activities onboard the Halloween on the High Seas cruise (and must-do’s in my opinion) are the story of the Pumpkin Tree, family viewing of The Nightmare Before Christmas in the theater (our kids were too young for this then, but on our list for next time), Mickey’s Mouse-querade Halloween party in the atrium with all the guests and Disney characters dressed in their costumes (ridiculously fun), trick-or-treating onboard, meeting fun Halloween characters (Hel-lo Jack and Sally!), pumpkin carving in the Oceaneer Club/Lab, and a myriad of other Halloween activities (keep checking personal navigator, aka cruise activity guide, as they do change often).
Packing tips for this cruise: Halloween costumes! The general unofficial consensus onboard seems to be that most family’s match costume themes (we were the Incredibles family—a very popular one), but that’s totally up to you and your vacay crew. If you want to dress up as Minnie Mouse and your kid wants to be Woody, then more power to you and them. And if you’re not costume people (not everyone is), wear Halloween t-shirts, or just skip it altogether—totally your call and A-okay! Personally though, we’re big costume people and never miss a chance to dress up together. (Being real, I had to get hubby onboard with this one at first, but now he totally gets the gist!) It’s also not necessary to pack a trick-or-treat bucket/bag since the day of the Mouse-querade party your stateroom host will place empty bags for candy in your stateroom to be used later.
Our cruise was a 7-night but there is Halloween on the High Seas available in 3, 4, and 8-night even, and now on all four ships as well. So the options are abundant, as well as the destinations. With that being said, if you are taking a Caribbean cruise, as always, pack your Pirate gear, because there is also Pirate night onboard (one of our favorite nights on any Caribbean Disney Cruise). Two party nights onboard!
How early can you book? Themed cruises can go fast sometimes (and sometimes cost a bit more), so if you’re looking for a specific date and/or stateroom, I’d book it asap. We’re already looking at dates for next year from now, and as always when booking, there are little penalties for booking so far in advance other than the deposit (always check cancellation policies to be sure, as they do change sometimes).
A few side notes for safety: Per Disney’s policy with costumes, do not bring any costume pieces shaped like weapons or anything that can be considered hazardous or dangerous onboard. For trick-or-treating during the Mouse-querade party for kids with allergies, DCL will make accommodations for kids with allergies, and have designated purple candy buckets with nut-free candy for kids with peanut allergies. More information can be found on the Disney Parks Mom’s Blog (click link). Also, as this is a Halloween cruise, some activities may be a tad intense for younger kids (e.g. Nightmare Before Christmas playing in theater). I don’t want to use the word “scary” because it’s not, but my daughter who was 3 1/2 at the time was a bit nervous listening to the caretakers tale about the Pumpkin Tree with the spooky sounds—as an example.
If you already booked a Halloween cruise with DCL and needed some tips, great! I’m so excited for you and hope this helped tremendously.
If you hadn’t even considered it, and now this made you consider booking, well then I consider my job very well done, as a huge part of this blog’s purpose is introducing parents to travel ideas that are super easy and super fun. And for us, this trip was definitely both.
Last but not least, whether you’re celebrating on land, or on the High Seas, I bid you a very Happy Halloween!