Disney Magic

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Disney Magic docked at Argostoli Kefalonia, Greece
NameDisney Magic
OwnerThe Walt Disney Company
OperatorDisney Cruise Line
Port of registryNassau,  Bahamas
BuilderFincantieri Marghera, Italy[1]
CostUS$400 million
Yard number5989
Laid downOctober 31, 1996
LaunchedMay 13, 1997
Sponsored byPatricia Disney
ChristenedSeptember 16, 1998
CompletedJune 30, 1998
Maiden voyageJuly 30, 1998[1]
In service1998–present
IdentificationIMO number9126807
StatusIn service
General characteristics
Class and typeMagic-class (Disney) [1]
TypeCruise Ship
Tonnage83,338 GT[1]
Length984 ft (300 m)[1]
Beam106 ft (32 m)
Draft25.3 ft (7.7 m)
Installed power43,000 kW (57,600 hp)
PropulsionDiesel-Electric; *5 × Sulzer 16ZAV40S; two shafts
  • Cruising 21.5 knots (39.8 km/h; 24.7 mph),
  • Maximum 23.5 knots (43.5 km/h; 27.0 mph)
Capacity1,750 passengers (double occupancy) 2,713 passengers (maximum)

Disney Magic is a cruise ship owned and operated by Disney Cruise Line, a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company.[2] She is the line's first vessel, later followed by the Disney Wonder, Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy, and Disney Wish. She has 11 public decks, can accommodate 2,700 passengers in 875 staterooms,[1] and has a crew of approximately 950. The interior of Disney Magic is decorated in the Art Deco style.

The ship has 20 bright yellow lifeboats which, along with the black, red, and white colors of the ship itself, match the colors of Mickey Mouse. This change from the standard safety orange took a waiver of international maritime rules.[3] As with other Disney cruise ships, the ship's horn blast plays a snippet of "When You Wish upon a Star".[4] Disney Magic's "godmother" is Patricia Disney, former wife of Walt Disney's nephew, Roy E. Disney.[5]


Disney Magic departing Port Canaveral

Planning and construction

Disney had cruise ship designs drawn up by February 1994.[6] Disney Cruise Line in 1995 ordered Disney Magic and Disney Wonder from Fincantieri in Italy. The ship was built in two halves with the bow built at Fincatieri's Ancona shipyard and the stern at their Marghera shipyard.

The planned maiden voyage was for March 12, 1998.[1] In January 1997, the first ticket for Magic's first trip was raffled off on Lifetime channel, while ticket sales would begin in September 1997.[3] Delays on the construction of MS Rotterdam kept additional workers from the Magic. Thus, by November 1997, the cruise line initially rescheduled the ship's initial voyage to April 30, 1998. However, further delays from suppliers and poor weather conditions at Fincantieri pushed back the maiden voyage even further by a few months. The bow was towed to the Marghera shipyard where the halves were joined.[1]


With livery and design evocative of the RMS Queen Mary,[7] Disney Magic set sail on her maiden voyage on July 30, 1998, out of her home port, Port Canaveral in Florida.[1] The ship's initial cruises were to Nassau, Bahamas with a stop at Disney Cruise Line's Castaway Cay over three to four nights.[5]

Originally, from 2000, Disney Magic had been undertaking weekly cruises to Castaway Cay and the Caribbean islands out of Port Canaveral.[8][9]

In May 2005, Disney Magic was dispatched to the West Coast as part of Disneyland's 50th Anniversary celebrations and as a test for California expansion. The transfer cruise sold out quicker than expected. Bookings from first time Disney cruisers were up for these cruises by at least 60%.[10]

In May 2007, Disney Magic started her inaugural Mediterranean cruises out of Barcelona, Spain. At the end of the summer, she returned to her home port of Port Canaveral.[5] In the summer of 2008, Disney Magic was moved to Los Angeles once again.[11] The ship returned to Barcelona in 2010 for another summer of Mediterranean cruises, as well as several northern European cruises before again returning to Port Canaveral in September.[5]

In May 2012, Disney Magic was relocated to New York City, where she sailed 8-night cruises to the Bahamas, New England, and Canada. In September, she was relocated to Galveston, Texas for the remainder of the year and offered 4-night Caribbean cruises, 6, 7, and 8-night Western Caribbean cruises, and 8-night Bahamian cruises.[12] In June 2013, Disney Magic was re-positioned to Barcelona for the summer.[13]

Disney Magic was put in for an overhaul at Navantia shipyard, Cadiz, Spain.[14] In October 2013, Disney Cruise Line completed renovations to the ship, [15] including updates to the ship's cabins, lounges, restaurants and spa and introduced new features including; "Marvel's Avengers Academy", a play area based on Marvel's Avengers characters, the AquaDunk and the AquaLab, consisting of a pool and waterslide.[16] The short-lived Carioca's restaurant replaced Parrot Cay, which would later be replaced with Rapunzel's Royal Table in 2018. Club Disney Junior replaced the Mickey Mouse Club and other changes were made.[17]

In 2010, Disney Magic sailed Disney Cruise Lines' inaugural Northern Europe itineraries, homeported in the port of Dover, 70 miles from London, England. She sailed to Norway, the British Isles, and the Baltic Sea during her brief three month season. With the October 6, 2017 cruise from New York to the Bahamas, Disney Cruise Line held its first Marvel Day at Sea.[18]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Disney Magic was anchored in Dover, England on and off from May 2020 and was due to stay until at least August 2021.[19] At that time, she sailed a series of "staycation cruises" (no port visits or excursions, subject to restrictions) exclusively in the United Kingdom.[20][21] UK cruises concluded on October 4, 2021 when Disney Magic repositioned to Miami, Florida and commenced cruises to the Bahamas. Then, in the summer of 2022, she returned to Europe for European cruises before returning to the US for the fall.

The Magic at port in Baie-Comeau, Quebec, Canada

In May 2023, Disney Magic completed a three week dry dock maintenance period in the Bahamas, followed by trials and operations from San Juan, Puerto Rico, serving the Southern Caribbean and ABC iteneraries.



Entertainment on Disney Magic includes live Broadway-style shows with many Disney characters at the Walt Disney Theater, the Buena Vista movie theater, which features both Disney films and first-run movies, several night clubs and lounges, several pools, and many Disney-themed parties and celebrations, including a Sail-Away Celebration, Pirate Night, and sometimes a Marvel or Star Wars Day at Sea.

On the ship's forward funnel, there is a 24-by-14 foot LED screen known as the Funnel Vision, due to its location on the rear of one of the ship's funnels, where guests can watch various movies and shows either from the deck or from inside Goofy's Pool.

Shows from the Walt Disney Theatre may include: All Aboard, Let The Magic Begin, Twice Charmed: A Twist on the Cinderella Story, Tangled the Musical, Disney Dreams: An Enchanted Classic, [22] and A Final Farewell Show.[citation needed] Former shows included Villains Tonight!, which was replaced by Tangled.[22]


Disney Cruise line is known for pioneering the rotational dining setup, in which guests and their wait staff rotate through three differently themed restaurants throughout their cruise. The Disney Magic's restaurants include Lumiere's (serving primarily French Cuisine), Rapunzel's Royal Table (serving German-inspired food), and Animator's Palate (which is present on three of the other Disney cruise ships). Additionally, the upscale, adults-only restaurant Palo, situated at the rear of the ship, requires a separate reservation and serves high-end Italian cuisine.

Youth Clubs

The ship features a nursery, Oceaneer Club, Oceaneer Lab, Edge, and Vibe for kids entertainment.[23] In December 2023, Disney Cruise Line abrubtly changed the age ranges for Oceaneer Club and Lab from 3-12 to ages 3-10, with some guests receiving less than a week notice of the change without any option to cancel or re-book.[24]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Saunders, Aaron (October 1, 2013). Giants of the Seas: The Ships that Transformed Modern Cruising. Seaforth Publishing. pp. 76–78, 179. ISBN 978-1848321724. Retrieved May 4, 2016.
  2. ^ "Disney Magic - Disney". Cruisecritic.com. Retrieved September 8, 2009.
  3. ^ a b Iovine, Julie V. (January 16, 1997). "Now It's Heigh-Ho, Off to Sea We Go - New York Times". The New York Times. Retrieved December 30, 2013.
  4. ^ Aronson, Tara (September 25, 2002). "Disney Magic grows up". csmonitor.com. Retrieved September 8, 2009.
  5. ^ a b c d Nefer, Barb. "Disney Cruise Line History". USA Today. Gannett. Retrieved December 30, 2013.
  6. ^ Dezern, Craig (February 20, 1994). "Disney Contemplating Creation Of Cruise Line". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved May 4, 2016.
  7. ^ "Now it's heigh-ho, off to sea we go," Ocala Star Banner (newspaper), 1997-01-26, Section D pg8
  8. ^ "Disney Cruises To Be Longer". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. December 26, 1999. Archived from the original on October 19, 2012. Retrieved September 8, 2009.
  9. ^ McDowell, Edwin (October 15, 2000). "Sea Changes The Latest Trends: More Ships Bring Bigger Discounts". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. Archived from the original on October 19, 2012. Retrieved September 8, 2009.
  10. ^ Jackson, Jerry W. (June 13, 2005). "Disney ship line on cruise control". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved April 13, 2016.
  11. ^ Jason Garcia (March 30, 2009). "Disney will homeport a ship in Los Angeles". Orlando Sentinel. Archived from the original on May 24, 2011. Retrieved March 30, 2009.
  12. ^ "Disney to Galveston and Canada/New England in 2012". Cruise Industry News. April 5, 2011. Retrieved December 30, 2013.
  13. ^ Sloan, Gene (September 24, 2012). "Disney kicks off first cruises from Texas". USA Today Travel. USA Today. Retrieved October 22, 2012.
  14. ^ Tribou, Richard (October 26, 2016). "Upgraded Disney Wonder headed back to the U.S." Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved April 13, 2017.
  15. ^ Lomer-Camarena, Kyara (September 28, 2014). "South Florida Parenting". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  16. ^ Sloan, Gene (April 26, 2013). "Disney Magic to get a major makeover". USA Today. Retrieved April 26, 2013.
  17. ^ Tribou, Richard. "'Tangled' restaurant to replace Carioca's on Disney Magic". dailypress.com. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  18. ^ "Disney Cruise Line announces Marvel Day at Sea on select 2017 Disney Magic sailings". Attractions Magazine. October 21, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2019.
  19. ^ Wright, Joe (February 27, 2021). "Disney Magic set to continue long stay in Dover after cruise schedule postponed until August". Archived from the original on February 27, 2021.
  20. ^ Wallace, Katie (April 16, 2021). "BREAKING: Disney Magic At Sea Dates Revealed!". The Kingdom Insider. Retrieved February 1, 2022.
  21. ^ "BREAKING: "Disney Magic at Sea" UK-Only Disney Cruise Line Itinerary Confirmed". WDW News Today. March 26, 2021. Retrieved February 1, 2022.
  22. ^ a b Tribou, Richard (November 15, 2015). "'Tangled' takes center stage aboard Disney Magic". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  23. ^ "Youth Clubs". disneycruise.disney.go.com.
  24. ^ Gailey, Jackie (December 15, 2023). "Disney Cruise Line Guests Angry About Kids Club Changes". Disney Cruise Line Information.

External links