This Article was kindly written by Slowhand from the Disney Secrets Forums
A “Deck by Deck” Walking Tour of the Disney Magic
Detail differences between the Disney “Magic” & the Disney “Wonder”
The Disney “Magic” and her sister ship [the Disney “Wonder”] have almost identical layouts, the main differences being that some of the areas have different names on each of the ships although their locations on their respective ships are the same.
For example “Topsider`s Buffet” on the “Magic” is called “Beach Blanket Buffet” on the “Wonder”, and “Lumiere`s” on the “Magic” is a restaurant called “Triton`s” on the “Wonder”.
The bars and the duty free shops, situated on Deck 3 Forward are in an area called “Beat Street” on the “Magic” whereas on the “Wonder” this area is named “Route 66”.
Their respective bars and the duty free shop also have different names on each of the ships.
The different names for these venues are “Sessions” [Magic] is called the ”Cadillac Lounge” on the “Wonder”, “Rockin` Bar D” [Magic] is called “Wave Bands” on the “Wonder” and “Upbeat” [Magic] is called “Radar Trap” on the “Wonder”.
Strangely though, the name of one area, “Diversions”, remains the same on both ships.
Externally, the ships are identical. The only detail difference is that Goofy can be seen “painting” the stern of the “Magic”, whereas Donald performs the same function on the “Wonder”!
|The stern of the “Magic”||The stern of the “Wonder”|
Getting around the Disney Magic
This tour of the Disney Magic begins at the uppermost deck [Deck 10], and descends deck by deck to Deck 1.
On every deck, the route taken starts at the rear of the ship [aft] and progresses towards the front of the ship.
Travelling from deck to deck involves the use of elevators [or alternatively the staircases] which are located at the aft, mid-ships and forward sections of the ship, and these are available on each deck.
Above the doors on the inside of every elevator, you will see a sign which shows the main features to be found on each of the decks.
|Elevator Information Sign||Elevator/Stair Case Area – Deck 4|
Deck 10 is the uppermost deck of the ship and it is an “open” deck favoured by many passengers who want to relax and sunbathe using the many sun loungers located all around. Extreme care should be taken though, as the constant breeze when the ship is moving hides the effect of the sun so liberal use of sun screen is essential.
Smoking is permitted on this deck, although for the comfort of others, only the starboard side of the deck is designated a smoking area and ash trays can be borrowed from any of the ship`s bars.
Palo`s restaurant is located on deck 10 aft. Access to the restaurant is either via the elevator/staircase, or alternatively by using the doors on the starboard side of the outside deck. This is the only restaurant on board where gentlemen are requested to wear a jacket.
Reservations are required in order to dine here and it is advisable to make these reservations either on line before boarding or immediately upon boarding as spaces are limited. A reservation fee applies [$15 p.p. in 2008], and this is a small price to pay for a truly fantastic dinner with superb service in a lovely environment from where you can view the chefs at work in the open kitchen.
The restaurant and lobby area are both decorated in the Art Deco style reminiscent of the 1930`s and the attention to detail is amazing. An example of this being the poles on either side of each of the elevator doors [“palo” in Italian is a “pole”, as per those located in Venice, Italy, where the gondoliers tie their boats when moored by the side of the canals.
Full length windows are fitted all around the restaurant which occupies the entire rear section of the deck along the aft, port and starboard sides, and an external deck allows passengers to walk around the outside of the restaurant at all times.
|Outside Palo's||Mickey's Children's Pool|
Walking past the external entrance doors to Palo’s on the starboard side of the ship, you catch a view of Mickey’s Children’s Poolon the deck below [see “Deck 9”], before coming to the rear funnel of the ship. The DCL ships have two funnels, although the only operational one is the rear funnel that houses the exhaust stacks from the boilers.
Located between the two funnels on the deck below is where Goofy`s Family Pool is located [see “Deck 9”].
This is an ideal location from which to see the “Sail Away Party” as you commence your cruise when the pool is covered by a solid floor to act as a dancing area and many of the CM`s and Disney characters take to the stage.
The forward funnel [which is only there for decorative purposes] actually houses The Stack [or “Aloft” on the Disney Wonder] which is an area set aside for the older children on board [14-17 years of age] where loads of activities are provided to keep them amused.
Entrances to The Stack are located on both port and starboard sides of the funnel.
Immediately in front of the forward funnel is the Outlook Bar selling a full range of alcoholic beverages.
Continuing the walk along the deck you then look down onto Quiet Cove which is the adult’s only pool area, before arriving at the Wide World of Sports Deck.
|Quiet Cove Pool||Wide World of Sports Deck|
The Wide World of Sports Deck is a fenced in area set aside for soccer and basketball games, sometimes supervised in groups led by crew members, but for the majority of the time it is available to all passengers to use as they wish.
Table tennis tables are located at the end of this area, behind a glazed screen on the other side of which is the deck to enable passengers to continue walking all around the deck.
This is as close to the front of the ship as you can get on this deck and loads of folk congregate here on the entry and exit of the ports of call for a good view.
Directly in front [on deck 8] is a very small swimming pool for the crew members use only, and right at the front of an elevated section of the deck is a yellow ship’s anchor. [This anchor is purely for decorative purposes only and is never dropped into the ocean.]
A few paces back from this most forward point, on both port and starboard sides of the ship [on deck 8] are extensions to the bridge where you will be able to look down at the ship`s officers at work manoeuvring the ship to it`s berth at each port of call.
The crew members stack the sun loungers each evening to provide greater safety for the passengers who may want to walk around the deck which is quite a pretty sight in the evenings when the ship`s lights are on, illuminating the superstructure.
Deck 10 at Night
Deck 9 is where all of the ship`s swimming pools and snack food outlets are located.
It is also a deck where you can chill out on a lounger whatever the weather as the deck is enclosed, apart from the areas where the pools are directly located.
Along both sides of the ship are ample sun loungers along with tables and chairs, all of which are located beneath a curved glass screen facing the ocean.
Table tennis tables and table football machines are available for use on this deck also
At the aft of the ship is Topsider`s Buffet with entrances on both the port and starboard sides of the ship.
There is always a wide variety of delicious hot and cold food on offer and there is ample seating either inside or outside the restaurant. Breakfast is served here every day, although the opening and closing times vary so it`s best to check with your Personal Navigator for this information on any given day.
Lunch is available most days, but again the times vary.
Dinner can be taken at Topsider`s every day [6.30 pm until 8.30 pm] apart from embarkation day and the Friday prior to disembarkation on the 7 day cruises.
A short distance along the deck from Topsider`s on the starboard side of the ship is where Goofy`s Galley and Scoops are located. In the same location on the port side of the ship is a drink station where you can obtain free hot and cold beverages at all times.
Nearby is Mickey`s Children`s Pool which is equipped with a slide and a separate toddlers pool. is where you can pick up snacks and sandwiches every day until 6.00 pm although the opening times do vary, and Scoops is a self serve ice cream station which shares similar operating hours.Goofy`s Galley.
At the far end of Mickey`s Children`s Pool, below the rear funnel is where Pluto`s Dog House is situated. This snack venue serves hot dogs and hamburgers etc. and is open each day from mid-morning until late in the evening [times vary], and an adjacent bar is available for both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
Further down the deck [in-between the two funnels] is Goofy`s Family Pool which is occasionally used for such events as the “Sail Away Party” and “Pirate`s Night”, when the pool is covered with decking to form a dancing area.
A stage at one end of the pool is where many of the Crew Members and Disney Characters appear to entertain the passengers and from time to time the stage is occupied by a live band of musicians.
|On the port side, beneath the forward funnel is Cove Café which has very comfortable seating areas both inside and outside, serving a wide variety of speciality coffees and light snacks. It is a nice area to chill out and read a book in the peace and quiet inside the café.|
|Quiet Cove Cafe||Signals Bar|
The forward section of the aft funnel is occupied by Pinocchio`s Pizzeria, which is open for a variety of pizzas from mid-morning until late in the evening, and again the times vary.
Further along the ship beyond the pool and through the port and starboard elevator/staircase entrance doors is the entrance to the Vista Spa offering a wide range of services, and it is also equipped with a fitness centre and gymnasium.
Near to the entrance to the spa on the port side is where some very comfortable, padded loungers are situated facing the ocean.
|Vista Spa Reception||Comfortable seating area|
At the forward section of this area is where you will get a good view of the extension to the bridge used by the ship’s officers during docking.
Decks 8, 7 & 6
These three decks are completely occupied by staterooms [cabins] and as such it is unlikely that you would ever use decks 8, 7 or 6 unless your stateroom is located on one of them.
The only location worthy of note is the ship’s bridge located forward on deck 8.
Since 9/11, bridge tours are not allowed for security reasons, however you can go on an occasional ship’s tour when afloat which takes you to the bridge area which is viewed from the deck above.
|Stateroom Corridoor||The Ship’s Bridge|
The first thing you notice as you enter this deck from the aft staircase or the elevator is how high the ceiling is when compared with the decks above.
This design feature is intended to make the deck less intimidating for the younger children who will be using the areas designated for them in this section of the ship.
Although there are staterooms in the forward and aft sections of this deck, most of the deck is taken up by the Buena Vista Theatre and facilities for the younger children on board.
There is only one walkway between the aft and the forward sections of the ship and this is located on the port side, although there is a “secret” walkway in-between two of the children`s club areas [Disney`s Oceaneer Club and Disney`s Oceaneer Lab] for use only by the supervised attendees.
The Buena Vista Theatre is located towards the aft section and is used mainly for the screening of movies at various times throughout the cruise.
It is occasionally also used as an assembly point for some of the shore excursions and also for various presentations and talks by crew members and guest speakers.
|The décor of the theatre maintains the art deco style of the 1930`s and as such there are no cup holders in the armrests of the seats and also there are no obvious speakers on view, unlike the more modern theatres. There is however a very modern sound and movie system controlled from an up to date control centre at the rear of the theatre.|
Next door to the theatre is where the entrance to Flounder`s Reef Nursery can be found.
This is an area set aside for the care of infants and toddlers by qualified crew members and reservations are required for this service.
|Turning right as you enter the Atrium, and you come across the entrance to Disney`s Oceaneer Club which is an area for [potty trained] 3-7 year olds which are looked after by trained crew members. The Club is open continuously at various times from morning to night and they arrange loads of activities to keep the children amused including on shore events at Castaway Cay.|
Deck 4 is where the Promenade Deck is located, accessed via large double doors at the aft, mid-ships and forward sections of the ship on both sides.
The Promenade Deck is an external walkway enabling you to do a complete “lap” of the ship and it is also a jogging route which follows an anti-clockwise direction.
Padded loungers are located on both port and starboard sides of the ship beneath the life boats secured at high level, and there are areas marked out for deck shuffle board games with all necessary playing equipment being located on the wall adjacent to these areas.
Smoking is permitted only on the starboard side of the ship.
|The forward and aft sections of the deck are enclosed. At the aft, you circumnavigate Animator`s Palate restaurant, and at the forward section you can view the machinery, ropes and chains etc. which are used to berth the ship when mooring. [This section is out of bounds during the times when the ship is docking.]|
One interesting feature can be seen just to the side of the mid-ships entrance doors where you will notice a vertical weld from floor to ceiling of the deck.
This is the location of the “join” where the two halves of the Disney Magic were welded together during construction. [Unlike the “Magic”, the Disney “Wonder” was built in one piece so this feature is unique to the “Magic”.]
|Animator`s Palate restaurant is to be found at the aft section of the deck and the entrance is situated on the port side of the ship. This restaurant cost more to build than any other restaurant afloat, mainly due to the lighting and sound systems used on certain occasions. The restaurant is only open for dinner, apart from disembarkation day.|
|On the 7 day cruises you get the opportunity to dine there on two occasions on the rotation dining plan. On the first occasion the décor is almost entirely monochrome and the uniforms worn by the servers maintain the black and white theme.|
|On the second visit, the room is gradually transformed into a riot of colour when numerous movie scenes from Disney cartoon films are displayed on the wall panels, all set to dramatic music, and the internal lighting changes colour as the evening progresses.|
The attention to detail here is amazing. For example, the support columns take the form of a number 6 paint brush, which was apparently Walt Disney`s favoured brush size during the days when he was a cartoonist.
This is reputed to be one of the safest places on board in the unlikely event of the ship running into difficulties due to the fact that it is encased in a very strong welded steel firewall all around.
This is probably why Animator`s Palate is used as an assembly point for passengers and crew in an emergency and many of the passengers are directed here on the first day of their cruise during the obligatory fire drill before the ship sets sail.
The internal walkway from Animator`s Palate towards the forward section of the ship takes you through Shutters which is where the ship`s photographers are based.
Inside Shutters are display panels where all of the professional photos taken of the passengers on board are displayed and offered for purchase.
They also sell a limited range of cameras and accessories including batteries and memory cards etc., and photo packages are available for passengers who opt to purchase a quantity of photographs during the cruise.
Shutters can get very crowded at peak times, especially when passengers are lining up ready to enter Animator`s Palate as the line extends into this area.
On entering the Atrium, on the right is the main entrance to Studio Sea. This is a lounge that is used for various family events throughout the cruise[ Disney Karaoke, Family Dance, Cookery Demonstrations etc.etc.] and it is only open during these event times. Studio Sea is also used occasionally as an assembly point prior to departure for some shore excursions.
|Art Gallery & Entrance to Studio Sea||Inside Studio Sea|
On the port side of the Atrium walkway is the DVC desk which is manned from time to time by CM`s offering advice regarding DVC ownership, and they also do some on board presentations for groups of potential purchasers.
A short distance further on is the DCL desk which also is manned at various times. Here you can discuss your future cruise plans and take advantage of the on-board booking discounts by reserving your next cruise while on board.
At times when the DCL desk is un-manned, there is a box where you can drop off an enquiry form in order to obtain a quote for your next cruise which is then delivered to your stateroom usually by the following day.
|DVC Desk||DCL Desk|
Walking passed the Atrium in a forward direction, you enter a corridor on both sides of which are located the two main shops on board, namely Mickey`s Mates [on the LHS] and Treasure Ketch to the right.
|Mickey’s Mates||Treasure Ketch|
Here is where you can purchase a wide variety of exclusive DCL merchandise along with clothing, books, jewellery and toys etc.etc., and at certain times you can have your purchases autographed by the Ship`s Captain who puts in an appearance.
Beyond the shops, you enter a seating area named Preludes in front of a large sepia photograph of Walt Disney at the entrance to the Walt Disney Theatre.
|This photograph is a “blown up” copy from Walt`s private photograph album where he is posing resting on a piano. The photograph had been digitally modified because in the original shot he had a glass of whisky and a cigarette in his right hand which it was thought would be inappropriate to show in it`s original form.|
Entrance to the Walt Disney Theatre is on both sides of the photograph, passing by booths selling pop corn and light refreshments to take into the theatre.
|The Walt Disney Theatre is the largest auditorium on-board and it is here that a pre-dinner show is staged each night, a different show taking place on each occasion.|
Deck 3 gives you your first glimpse of the Disney Magic on embarkation day as you enter the Atrium, and sadly this is also the last deck you see on the final day of your cruise as you disembark.
As per deck 5, there is only one walkway running down the length of the ship and this is situated on the port side.
Parrot Cay restaurant is located on deck 3 aft and the entrance is on the port side of the ship.
The restaurant is open for breakfast and dinner each day and on certain days it also opens for lunch. It has a Caribbean feel with a very colourful décor, and on certain days hosts a character breakfast.
|Parrot Cay Entrance||Parrot Cay Restaurant|
Heading forward you come to the Promenade Lounge.
|Before the lounge, on your right is an Internet Café where several pc`s are available for personal use. DCL offers several “plans” for internet access using these computers or your own lap-top, however they seem to operate on a relatively slow speed and this can work out rather expensive if you spend a long time on them.|
|The Promenade Lounge is a pleasant area for families to relax before or after dinner and there is a waiter service from the bar. Free snacks are often available, and there is a small dance floor with live music each night of the cruise.|
Again the décor in this area is Art Deco, the external wall of Lumiere`s being of polished wood and glass and huge glazed portholes along the corridor give you a view of the ocean passing by.
Lumiere`s has an ambience of a fine dining restaurant and is open for breakfast and dinner every day, and for lunch/brunch on certain days of the cruise.
|Mural in Lumiere’s||Chandelier Rose|
As the name suggests, Lumiere`s is themed upon the “Beauty and the Beast” and there is a large mural at the end of the restaurant to this effect. As usual, the attention to detail is amazing, even down to the roses located beneath each of the chandeliers.
|Entrance to Lumiere’s||Atrium|
The Atrium is a huge area having wide staircases on either side of the entrance to Lumiere`s with a large statue of a nautical Mickey in front of the entrance doors.
It is here that the Disney characters can be found at various times throughout the cruise, posing for photographs with the passengers, at which times the on-board photographers are also available if required.
The Captain`s Welcome Reception takes place in the Atrium on the formal night of the 7 day cruises when complimentary cocktails are served and the Captain is available for a family portrait, standing in front of a back-drop scene. Other back-drops are also at other locations in the Atrium and nearby on deck 4 on these occasions where the on-board photographers are at hand at each location.
At the far end of the Atrium is where Guest Services are located on the port side, and this is usually manned by several crew members attending to the needs of the passengers at all times.
At a similar location on the starboard side is the Shore Excursions Desk where details of all of the ports of call, including shopping guides may be obtained.
|Guest Services Desk||Shore Excursions Desk|
To the right of the Guest Service area is a narrow corridor which leads to the forward section of the ship to Beat Street where several clubs and bars are located.
The first of the clubs is to your right and is called Rockin` Bar D. In fact this is where many passengers visit as soon as the embark on their cruise because this is the location where reservations for Palo`s are taken in addition to making any changes to the dining plans etc
Live entertainment takes place each night for adults and a degree of audience participation takes place quite often during the act! Themed nights take place occasionally where music of the 60`s or 70`s etc. is played and the entertainment is provided by the entertainment members of the ship`s crew.
Further along is another corridor to your right leading you to Up Beat which is the ship`s duty free shop, offering a wide range of liquor and tobacco goods at tax free prices.
A walkway from Up Beat takes you to another room called Diversions which is used mainly for adults’ only game shows and the screening of sporting events.
|Entrance to Beat Street||Corridoor to Up Beat||Entrance to Diversions|
There is a piano bar called Sessions located at the very end of Beat Street [accessed via the main corridor on the port side of the ship] with a bar and some comfortable lounge chairs and tables. Here adults can relax with a drink and be entertained by a pianist [who takes the usual requests] in a quiet relaxed atmosphere.
Deck 2 is another deck almost entirely taken up by staterooms, so it is unlikely that most folks will never need to venture here unless they have their stateroom on this level.
The only public area on this deck is called Ocean Quest which is located mid-ships. This area used to be a quiet retreat for reading or for board games, but it is now used at various times for activities for the 11-13 year old age group.
Although there are a few staterooms on this deck, the only public area is the Health Center located at the forward section of the deck, manned by qualified members of the medical profession.
The chances are that most passengers will most certainly go down to this deck from time to time though, as this is the deck used when leaving the ship at the ports of call, whether this being on foot or in certain locations, by tender boat.
There are two exit locations at the forward and aft sections of the ship on both port and starboard sides.
|Health Center||Pedestrian Exit||Ship’s Tender|
There are several decks below deck 1, however these are “out of bounds” to passengers as these decks house not only the engine room but also the majority of the crew members have their cabins on the lower decks of the ship, some of which are below the water line.