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Disney Mediterranean Cruise Guide

If you have kids and are looking for a great way to see parts of Europe with them, you should consider taking a Disney Mediterranean Cruise. Disney Cruise Line knows how to cater to families who love to travel and have great itineraries to allow you to see many different destinations on one trip!

Disney Mediterranean Cruise Guide

7 Night Mediterranean Cruise from Barcelona

Disney Cruise Line has both 5 and 7 Night Mediterranean Cruises that take you on a voyage to several countries.

In my opinion, it is one of the best ways to see many different places in a week.

Disney Cruise to Mediterranean

We’ve taken the 7-Night Mediterranean Cruise from Barcelona and have to say that it was one of my family’s most favorite vacations ever. Here are the ports of call that we were able to experience:

Barcelona Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Your trip will start (and probably end) in Barcelona so you will want to make sure that you schedule some time here before (or after your stay) so you can fully take in this amazing city. 

We usually spend 2-3 days in Barcelona when we go.

Barcelona Port

The Barcelona Cruise Port is one of the largest in the Mediterranean.

You will find that there are many ships coming into the Barcelona cruise ship port at the same time.

This can make debarkation a little chaotic if you don’t know what you are doing or where to go.

Many people book a Barcelona Cruise excursion ahead of time, but if you don’t, you won’t have a hard time finding things to do on your own.

Getting to the city of Barcelona from the Cruise port is about a 15-minute walk.

Taking a taxi is the easiest way to get to Barcelona from the cruise terminals, but it can be also the most expensive way as well.

Another option to get into the city is the Port Bus.

This is a bus service that goes back and forth between the Cruise Terminals at the Adossat Quay & Columbus Monument that only works whenever cruises are arriving to Barcelona.

A one-way ticket costs about 3€.

Barcelona Spain

5 Top Things to See in Barcelona

  1. La Rambla. These tree lined streets are like an open air market and pedestrian area. You can easily grab dinner, see street performers, and do a little shopping all in one stop.
  2. Sagrada Familia. Probably one of the most beautiful cathedrals you will ever see. This magnificent church has been a work in progress since 1882. Designed by Antoni Gaudí, this Gothic Basilica is in the shape of a Latin cross and is filled with beautiful biblical imagery both inside & out.
  3. Park Guell. Sitting high atop the city is a picturesque park designed by Antoni Gaudí. Plan for lots of walking up hill, but the view and the beautiful architecture will be well worth it!
  4. Museu Picasso. This museum houses one of the most extensive collections of Picasso’s art. You will see the progression of his art from his youth, through his cubist period and beyond. If you can go on a Sunday do (it’s FREE on Sundays).
  5. Columbus Monument. While not the most amazing of sites in Barcelona, Americans will find value in this statue of the man who is noted historically for his trip across the Atlantic to the Americas. The statue is located at the site where Columbus returned to Spain after his first voyage.

Naples (& Pompeii), Italy

On this cruise, you will spend a lot of time in Italy, but each port you stop at will be different.

While you will port in Naples and can spend time there, we chose to do an excursion through Disney Cruise Line that allowed us to visit both Pompeii and Sorrento.

Having visited Naples before, I have to say that my honest opinion is that the day is better spent visiting Pompeii and/or the Amalfi Coast.

Pompeii Disney Excursion

Our Disney Cruise excursion took us by bus to Pompeii where we had a guided tour then on to Sorrento where we visited a local farm where we had lunch and learned how to make Mozzarella.

The excursion also allowed us our own time to explore Sorrento.

If you do choose to do Naples & Pompeii on your own, it is easily doable. It is about a 10-minute walk from the cruise port into Naples.

From there, you can see many of the major sites on your own and take the train to Pompeii or Herculaneum.

If you are visiting Pompeii with the kids, I think you should be prepared to see a lot of sexually explicit items in the market just outside of the Pompeii Archeological site. The vendors will be selling everything from calendars to posters featuring visuals of corpses in sexual poses.

Rome, Italy

Civitavechhia (Rome), Italy

When you travel to Rome on a Disney Cruise, you actually dock in Civitavecchia so you will need to find a way to get into the Rome city center.

Disney offers several cruise excursion options, and some buses and taxis will take you into Rome.

Trevi Fountain in Rome

We decided that we wanted someone to actually take us from places to place instead of relying on buses and walking so we did a semi private tour.

This was nice for us because we were able to go in with another family (so a total of 8 people) for a MUCH CHEAPER rate than any of the bigger tours (through Disney or elsewhere) were charging (I’m talking 50% less).

We had a van with a driver (who spoke good English) and were able to pretty much plan our day according to what we wanted to see.

We were able to visit The Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Colosseum, Forum and the Vatican.

I would not have done it any other way!

If you are planning to see Rome on your own, you are going to want to make sure that you aren’t stuck standing in lines all day.

Buy whatever attraction tickets you can in advance. This can save you not only time but money!

Most of the places you visit in Rome will have an audio tour option. Typically, they are also in a separate line.

Opt out of the audio tour and use the FREE Rick Steve downloads instead. One of the best ones is for the Roman Forum.

Livorno (Florence, Pisa), Italy

When visiting Livorno, you will need to choose between visiting Florence and Pisa. You can do both, but in my opinion, it is not ideal.

This is because you don’t really get enough time in Florence and you don’t get to go inside the Uffizi which I think is an important museum to see.

Duomo in Florence

On our Disney Mediterranean Cruise to Livorno, we chose to spend the day in Florence on our own. There are guided tour options, but since everything is centrally located and we didn’t want to be on someone else’s schedule, we did it alone.

We began our day trip to Florence in the heart of Florence.

This is where you will find such important sites as Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral (Duomo), Giotto’s Bell Tower, Baptistery of St. John and Museo dell’Opera del Duomo.

We stopped for lunch at a local restaurant before heading on to see the local squares and the Uffizi.

From the Uffizi balcony, you get a beautiful view of the Ponte Vecchio bridge.

Villefranche (Monaco & Monte Carlo / Nice), France

Located on the French Riviera, this region includes Monte Carlo, Cannes, and Nice.

We choose to go on our own cruise excursion from Villefranche to Nice, Monte Carlo and Monaco.

There are two ways to get from Villefranche to Nice: Train or Bus.

Bus Trip from Villefranche to Nice

If you choose to take the bus from Villefranche to Nice, it will take about 15 minutes.

Once the tender brings you inland, walk up the hill to the bus stop. You will take Bus 100. This is a popular thing to do, so expect that you might have to wait for more than once bus. Buses run every 15 mins or so.

You purchase bus fare on the bus. Make sure you have Euros.

On the return trip, the bus is even more full and can take quite some time to make the journey back. You may want to take the train.

Train Trip from Villefranche to Nice

Just a 10-minute walk from where the tender lands, the train is the fastest way to get to Nice from Villefranche if the trains are running.

Be sure to check to make sure that they are not on strike (as this is known to happen quite a bit in France).

You can purchase your ticket at the train station. It is about 2 Euro each way. You will get off at the Nice Ville station and walk the rest of the way into Old Town.

Once in Nice, take the Little Train Tour which takes you to see the most important landmarks as well as gets you to Monaco to see the Prince’s Palace at the top of Castle Hill.

It takes all the planning out of your trip and because of the audio guide, you will learn as you go.

View of French Riviera

The views from atop Castle Hill are stunning.

There are plenty of places to sit and observe the beauty of this region of France!

Going from Nice to Monte Carlo

The bus ride from Nice to Monte Carlo (Bus #100) is a wonderful way to see the scenery. At only 1.50€ each way, you are going to find this the cheapest way to get around.

Grand Prix Track in Monte Carlo

Here you will be able to see The Monaco Grand Prix.

You can almost picture the cars zooming through these narrow hilly and quite curvy roads. I have no idea how they do it!

Because it is so hilly, you might want to take a local bus to get from one end of the town to the other. Tickets cost 2€ and can be purchased from the driver. Tickets are good for 30 minutes.

Monte Carlo

One of the sights you will want to see is the Monte Carlo Casino.

If you are without children, you can go inside and check it out or take your chances and play the tables. Those with kids can go no further than the foot of the stairs.

If you are looking to do some shopping, Monaco has many upscale shops and stores. Be aware that those will be closed on Sundays.

Tip: As you know if you’ve traveled to France, bathrooms are hard to find. You can find bathrooms in train stations and you will find there are places like Burger King on Jean Medecin Avenue where you can buy a soda and use a clean bathroom for free.

History of Wooden Puppets in Italy

Things to Know about Mediterranean Cruise Excursions

Local Currency

The currency in all ports of call on a Mediterranean cruise will be the Euro. There are 8 Euro Coins and 7 different Euro banknotes. 

While you can charge everything to your room while on the ship, you will want to make sure you get plenty of Euros prior to your trip for your excursions.

You can use the exchange services on the ship (as well as at most airports, ports of call ATMs, and European banks) BUT you will want to make sure you get the biggest bang for your buck.

European exchange rates vary and fluctuate. Find the best deal you can prior to your cruise and get more than you think you will need.

Also, whether you plan to withdrawal Euros from a Credit Card while in Europe or not, make sure you know your PIN code just in case.

We had no idea what our pin code was and it caused us an unneeded headache when we needed more Euros.

Be on Time

Be prepared to be up early. Disney Cruise Line excursions seem to get priority in leaving the ship.

In Villefranche, it can take up to one hour to leave the ship because you have to terry off the ship by small boats.

If you are doing a non-Disney or on your own excursion, plan accordingly.

We did both Disney and Non-Disney excursions on our Disney Mediterranean Cruise. I do suggest you do your homework.

Excursions will not wait for you, so be sure that you are on time!

You will pay more for Disney excursions than you will if you book private tours, but you are guaranteed that Disney won’t leave you if your excursion runs late (traffic is an issue in some ports of call).

We did both Disney and non-Disney and I’m glad we did! 

Learning to Make Mozzarella in Sorrento

Language Barrier

You don’t need to speak Spanish, French or Italian.

We found that everyone we met spoke English, so it made communication very easy.

I was really hoping to use some of the Spanish I’ve mastered, but I hardly ever had the chance.

Dressing Appropriately for Rome

Dress Appropriately

If you plan on visiting houses of worship or other religious locations, you should make sure that your knees and shoulders are covered. 

Wear comfortable shoes. For me, it was Skechers Go Walk Shoes. These are my go-to shoes and I swear by them. I did see others wearing them too!

The kids love their Keen Newport H2 Shoes. They are flexible, breathe and keep their toes covered.

Best part is that no one got blisters or complained about how uncomfortable their shoes were.

Packing List for a Disney Cruise

Pack Smart for Excursions

Create a Mediterranean Cruise packing list and make sure you think about things you might need when you leave the ship.

Bring a money belt or small purse that can be carried across the body.

My husband carried the money belt (you will need to carry Passports with you and this is the safest way).

Make copies of your passport to keep on the ship.

I carried a small Vera Bradley Hipster Purse that held my small incidentals like phone and sunglasses. We also had a backpack for souvenirs, hats, sunblock and such.

Italian Gelato

Be Prepared

Most of your lunches will be on your own. If you sit down in a restaurant, you will pay more than if you take it to go.

There is no tap water. If you want water, you will have to pay for it.

Bottled water is cheapest~ 1-2 euros at small convenience stores (located just about everywhere).

You’ll pay twice as much (same as a soda) in a restaurant.

They serve both sparkling and “water natural” which is regular bottled water, so know what you are ordering.

Gratuities are generally already included in your bill at sit down restaurants.

Bathrooms are not always free, clean or big. Those with small children (or bladders) will want to know where “toilets” can be found while out and about.

Keep small change with you in case they charge a fee.

Bring a stack of napkins to dry your hands because most do not have ANY paper towels for when you wash your hands.

Disney Mediterranean Cruise Guide

More about the Mediterranean ports:

  • If you plan on staying extra days in Europe prior or post cruise, be sure to get at least one converter for your electronics.
  • Trains are unpredictable. They will stop for no reason and can cause your trip to be off schedule.
  • Pickpockets will look just like you. Be wary of strangers and never ask one to take your picture. You might never see your camera again.
  • If you are handed a small card asking for money, don’t take the card. They will want it back… with some money.
  • Our go to book was Rick Steve’s Mediterranean Cruise Ports. I carried it with us to every stop we made and found it very informative!
Disney Dream Mediterranean Cruise

Disney Mediterranean Cruise Ship

  • The Mediterranean Cruise itself is just like any other cruise you would take with Disney. Same great staff, on board activities, accommodations and food.
  • Disney Characters will be dressed up in costumes based on port! Great photo opportunities.
  • There is one formal night (not all that formal, really) and a pirate night followed by fireworks.
  • They have movies in English and Spanish. Be sure to know which one you are going to (this information will be on your Disney Navigator! The theater is small, so get there early. Movies fill up fast, especially first-run movies. I’m talking, about people sitting on the stairs. Yes, it is that packed and they do not allow you to save seats.
  • Pack smart. Bring only what you need. Vary your luggage. We heard stories of airlines losing all luggage (those out of Heathrow were the worst), so make sure you have items like your camera, electronics, medications, and basic clothing in your carry-ons.
  • There are laundry rooms on the ship so you can wash your items as needed.
  • Disney Cruise Line provides shampoo, conditioner, and body wash along with body lotion in your stateroom bathrooms.
  • There will be a hairdryer in a desk drawer.
  • There are 2 FREE Disney Cruise Line postcards in the desk. Stamps can be found at post offices (and some convenience stores) at each port of call.

We had a fabulous time on our Disney Mediterranean Cruise! What questions do you have about sailing to Europe with Disney?

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