We are fresh off the Disney Cruise Line ship the Disney Wonder and I wanted to share with you my tween and teen boy’s favorite things to do on board! The first thing they did when they found out we were attending the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, that included a 3 night cruise, was look up what they offered for kids their age on board. They both agreed that they had MORE fun than they thought they were going to have aboard the Disney Wonder.
*If you’re curious, we attended our very first Disney Cruise as part of the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration or #DisneySMMC which is an invite only paid conference that includes some fun and exclusive events and activities.
From outgoing to shy the teens I asked on board all agreed that they had fun, usually more fun than they thought they were going to have. Whether the teen or tween is outgoing or shy they won’t be bored on board. Here are my boys’ favorite things to do on board the Disney Wonder.
Tween & Teen Favorite Activities Aboard the Disney Wonder
- The Disney Cruise Line App – Download the app before you board and once you’re on you can message each other and check the schedules throughout your entire sailing! The whole family loved this option and it made it so easy to check in throughout the day and for the kids to make plans with their friends. If your teen doesn’t have a phone or mobile device there are also mobile phones available in your stateroom to use on the ship. Teens in this instance could also use the printed paper Navigator that is left in your stateroom each night to see the day’s activities.
- All the food and drinks! I knew they’d love the food options and they definitely did. What’s so great about the Disney cruise line is that teen favorites like soda, hot chocolate, cookies, pizza, ice cream were all available to them at no additional cost. That’s right, no soda package needed! They loved the freedom to grab snacks and treats whenever they felt a little hunger (which for these boys is pretty much all the time). Outside on the deck was their favorite spot to sit. Surprisingly we never ordered room service because once they got back to the room in the evening they crashed in bed but that is an option too and includes Mickey Ice Cream bars! The pirate buffet was a fun bonus too.
- Movie Theater – The Buena Vista Theatre played current movies throughout the afternoon and evening. For example on this trip (February 9-12, 2017) they played Dr. Strange, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Moana & Zootopia. My boys and their friends on board went a few times!
- Sports Deck – The sports deck has a basketball court but also had foosball & ping pong which the boys loved. This was a great place for them to meet up with Dad too!
- Edge the Tween Club – The Disney Wonder has a space reserved for tweens ages 11-14 called Edge. Edge has video games, board games and planned activities throughout the cruise. They also have some open hour times where parents or siblings can go in and play too!
- Vibe the Teen Club – The Disney Wonder also has a teen only space reserved for teens ages 14-17 (except for open hours). Vibe has video games, arcade games, board games, movies and cool spaces to just hang out as well as planned activities like karaoke. Your kids can come and go from either club as they wish. On their first entry they’ll check their age and give them a sticker on their Key to the World card (room key) for ease of entry.
The ship also has some great family entertainment like game shows in the lounge or the pool area but most of the teens we ran into were too busy having fun doing all of the above to be bothered with those. I’m sure on longer cruises they’d have more time to explore the other options.
We allowed our boys to roam the ship on their own as long as they were with someone and checked in with us throughout the day (the app was a lifesaver). We made it family rule that phones needed to be charged or you needed to be in the room charging them (or picking up a portable charger) so if we needed to get a hold of them at any time we could. I also used it to let them know that I was going to a show or to remind them that dinner time was coming up.
We chose the late dinner time which was 8:15 and I loved that it provided us an opportunity to catch up with the boys about their day. It was also nice to go straight to the pirate party one evening instead of having a large space of time where the boys might go off and do their own thing again.
Have any questions about teens or tweens on a Disney Cruise? Ask away! Feel free to leave your teens favorites in the comments as well. It’s always great to be able to ask others who have been.
Author: Allison Waken
Allison Waken is a wife, mom of boys and Phoenix, AZ native. She has been creating inspiring content for All for the Boys since 2011. Allison loves travel, movies and spending as much time as possible with her family while she can!