Posted in Florida 2016

24th December 2016 (Day 7)-Magic Kingdom

Back to Magic Kingdom today, and Christmas Eve already.

The weather today was amazing with bright blue skies and very warm.  So different to experience weather like this so close to Christmas when we would normally have grey skies and probably rain in the UK. So we definitely were going to make the most of it. Plan was to stay all day and see the fireworks at the end of the day, so we didn’t rush down to the park.  We were a little concerned about how busy it would be but it actually wasn’t too bad at all considering it was Christmas Eve.

Rosemary was wearing her amazing Christmas dress.

Christmas Dress
Christmas Dress

On the way in we grabbed some more photos in front of the tree, making the most of that free Photopass.

Happy Holidays
Happy Holidays

We had a little browse through the shops on Main Street.  And found a giant rice crispie cake to add to our “Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head” series.

Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head
Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head

We had Fastpasses sorted during the day but first we went into Country Bear’s Jamboree.  An attraction we’d never been to before.  Sorry no pictures (they didn’t come out well).  But after that we used our first Fastpass for the Jungle Cruise.  For Christmas everything is rethemed as the Jingle Cruise and the puns are absolutely as terrible as usual.

Jingle Cruise
Jingle Cruise
Jingle Cruise
Jingle Cruise
Jingle Cruise
Jingle Cruise

Afterwards we were in the Adventureland area and decided to visit the Tiki Room and watch that.  Didn’t want to exhaust ourselves as we were planning to stay late, and it was a good chance to sit down in the cool. Think we might have been our first time actually going into the show.

Tiki Room
Tiki Room

After that we used our second Fastpass to meet some Princesses.  Elena and Cinderella this time.

Princess Elena
Princess Elena
Princess Cinderella
Princess Cinderella

We had lunch reservations but had a bit of time before that and could hear something going on around the castle.  We went to investigate and it was a dance party.  So we stopped to watch and Rosemary joined in a little bit.

Dance Party
Dance Party

What was good was the different characters in the parade, including those from Zootropolis.

Dance Party
Dance Party

By this time we could go for our lunch reservation at Jungle Cruise Canteen.

Jungle Cruise Canteen
Jungle Cruise Canteen

This was a new restaurant from our last visit (I think) and although the food was OK it wasn’t that impressive and thought it was a little pricey for what it was.  Was nice though and a good experience.  Just not sure I’d worry about it again.

When we had finished with lunch we tried to catch the Christmas parade but were a little stuck on the Adventureland side with a lot of people in between.  So it was a bit further away than would have been ideal, but we did still get to see Santa before he goes off on his busy night.

Santa
Santa
Santa
Santa

Our next Fastpass was for Pirates of the Caribbean, so we headed back into Adventureland.  Stopping on the way to visit the Robinson’s Treehouse.  Rosemary was a bit unimpressed.  No ride features or animatronics.

Robinson's Treehouse
Robinson’s Treehouse

And then onto Pirates!  No photos from the ride as it was so dark. Great ride and that drop at the start still catches me out.

Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean

We then had some time to wander around the park and do some browsing in the shops.  The rides were pretty busy but honestly we weren’t that worried and it was just a good opportunity to see the park at night.  We thought the castle looked amazing all lit up at night.

Disney Castle
Disney Castle

But when all the lights came on it was even more amazing.

Disney Castle
Disney Castle

We weren’t feeling that hungry but wanted a snack so headed to Gaston’s, which was really quiet.  We got warm cinnamon rolls and coffee.  And the coffee is still the worst ever.

Gaston's
Gaston’s

The cinnamon rolls aren’t quite as big as your head but are pretty big.

Gaston's
Gaston’s

Gaston’s looked really good at night.  We’ve not spent that much time at the parks after dark because Rosemary would get tired and we’d head back.  So it was really good to see things.

Gaston's
Gaston’s

We bumped into one of the Photopass photographers by the Little Mermaid ride and got this great photo.

Ariel's Castle
Ariel’s Castle

We checked out the store at Storybook Circus and Rosemary had a short play in the water bit there.

Storybook Circus
Storybook Circus

Julia really wanted to see the Hall of President’s (again something we have never done) and it would give us a little break while we sat down.  Photography and video isn’t allowed in the hall and so just this picture from the lobby with the Seal of the United States. Interesting show, although some of the animatronics were a bit creepy.

Hall of Presidents
Hall of Presidents

By this time it was nearly the start of the fireworks show so we headed back towards the castle.  The position we ended up in wasn’t ideal but we still got a great view.  The light show on the castle is great and the fireworks were excellent.

Fireworks
Fireworks
Fireworks
Fireworks

By this time it was getting really late so we headed out of the park (along with pretty much everyone else) to head back to the hotel.  We had a busy day the following day so wanted to get as much sleep as we could.

Back at the hotel it was just time to hang up things ready for Santa.

Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve

What a lovely way to spend Christmas Eve!

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Posted in Florida 2016

22nd December 2016 (Day 5)-Magic Kingdom

Going to be a long day today with lots of stuff packed in.  So we got up early, had breakfast at the hotel and headed to Magic Kingdom.  We got there early because the park would be closing early for the special ticketed Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.  We had decided not to get tickets for this because of the extra cost, the fact that it would likely be very busy as it was the last one and Rosemary would probably be tired and we’d only stay a couple of hours.

The big tree was at the top of Main Street and there were various meet and greets going on there.

Magic Kingdom Tree

The countdown was also getting close to the big day.

3 Days to Go

While we sorted ourselves out after unpacking everything to come through security I snapped a quick picture of Rosemary with Walt and Mickey.

Rosemary with Walt and Mickey

Main Street was pretty busy but we caught a bit of the Royal Welcome show, which features Princess Elena being welcomed to the park by Cinderella. The Christmas decorations along Main Street were all (of course) Mickey shaped.

Mickey Decorations

And then headed towards Tomorrow World where we had our first FastPass.  But as we were still a little early for it we went into the Carousel of Progress.  Possibly not the best use of time as it’s not a ride which will ever be busy but we were in the location and didn’t want to walk off somewhere else.

Carousel of Progress

When we came out we got a pressed penny (we had got a few already and Rosemary’s collection is getting pretty large now).

Pressed Penny

And by this time our first FastPass was active for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin.  I went with Rosemary and Julia went on her own.  She was also the only one who realised there was a ride camera along the way and posed for it.

Buzz’s Spin

But we beat Zerg at least (partly because the ride paused for a while in one spot and I kept shooting a 5000 point target).

Zerg is Defeated

And when we came out we found Buzz meeting his fans just beside the Carousel of Progress so we went and side “hi” and got some fist-bumps.

Fist-Bumps with Buzz

We started to walk towards our next FastPass and on the way the wait time for It’s a Small World was only 5 minutes so we went basically straight onto the ride.  It’s the only ride in any of the parks which we have done every single time we’ve visited with Rosemary, so it will have to be our tradition to always ride it no matter what.

It’s a Small World
It’s a Small World

After that we went to use our second FastPass at the Haunted Mansion.  I’d booked them early in the day (although it’s often much easier to get on rides at that time) because we knew we were leaving mid-afternoon and being unsure on how busy things would be I wanted some guaranteed rides.

Haunted Mansion

As we came out we were going back towards the Castle and saw that Peter Pan was out beside his ride.  We’d never even seen him before in the parks so wanted to join the queue (which wasn’t even that long).

Peter Pan

Having a little time before our next booked event and being as it was snack time, we got Rosemary a Premium Mickey Bar (is there a non-Premium one that’s cheaper perhaps?) and had a little breather.

Mickey Premium Bar

While sitting down I checked the park app and saw that the wait time for the Mad Tea Party was basically zero.  So as we were so close we headed over to pick up another ride.  It’s such a short ride, which was a little disappointing because there wasn’t really anyone waiting for it and I thought they could probably have let it run a bit longer.

Mad Tea Party

But when we got off it was time to use our third and final FastPass to meet Rapunzel and Tiana at Princess Fairytale Hall.

Princess Tiana
Princess Rapunzel

After the app again came in handy for the wait times, which now shows that the Under the Sea ride was down to 10 minutes or so.  So straight in again (nice and cool in there as well).  The UV lights on the ride really lit up our clothes.

Under the Sea

Our last booking at the park today was going to be a treat for Rosemary, which she didn’t know about, and was to go to the Crystal Palace for a slightly late lunch with the characters from Winnie the Pooh.  Bit confusing when you first arrive but our waiter told us who was coming round and what would happen.  There aren’t any Disney photographers in the restaurant so you take your own pictures.  We got to meet Eeyore, Piglet, Tigger and Pooh.  Food was pretty decent we thought and there was a good choice.

Eeyore
Tigger
Piglet
Pooh

Pooh was the last to come round and we’d finished eating by the time he appeared.  He was worth the wait though.  And his chaperone offered to take a family picture for us.

Pooh

We really liked it as a restaurant.  Nice and airy.  Julia recognised the biscuits as being special for the Very Merry Christmas Party (for the Disney Food Blog) and not available all the time.

Crystal Palace
Christmas Biscuits

On the way out we just stopped for some of the PhotoPass photographers to get some family photos.

Cinderella’s Castle
Under the Tree

And that was the end of what turned out to be a really packed day at Magic Kingdom, but not the end of our day. We left the park and instead of getting the monorail back to the Ticket and Transportation Center we got the resort monorail to the Grand Floridian.  We wanted to have a look at the hotel decorated for Christmas really.

Grand Floridian

A Previous time we came (in 2013) we went for dinner there, which we weren’t doing this time but instead going for a look round. The tree was really amazing, but very hard to get a good photo of. Hopefully I caught a little bit of the glamour and size of it.

Grand Floridian Tree

And there is a huge gingerbread house as well, which they sell hot chocolate and gingerbread from.

Gingerbread House

While we were looking round a couple asked us if we were waiting for Mickey and Minnie, which we knew nothing about.  So we waited and sure enough they made an appearance. So that was a really nice and unexpected bonus.

Mickey and Minnie

We then headed back to the car via the monorail and went to Disney Springs (Downtown Disney).  Parking was a bit of a headache but we ended up at the very top of one of the multi-story parking blocks.  We had a quick look round and visited the Coca Cola store, which had a great glass display.

Coke Store

And the World of Disney as well just to see what they were selling and get an idea of what we might want to get as souvenirs.

World of Disney

And that was as much as we could do for the day.  Time to head back to the hotel and bed.

Posted in Florida 2015

7th August 2015 (Day 15)-Magic Kingdom and Going Home

Our last day in Orlando!

hampton_inn_logoOur time at the Hampton Inn had been great.  The staff there were absolutely fantastic and so very friendly.

I’ve copied below my TripAdvisor review:

We booked the Hampton Inn because it appeared to be highly rated on a number of different review sites although we were a little worried that due to it’s low price it might be a bit tatty. I’m glad to say that we had a great stay and will definitely highly consider staying there again.

The staff were extremely friendly which made it feel especially welcoming. And a big thank you to Patrick who checked us in and was always extremely welcoming when we returned from a long day at the parks.

-The room was very clean and well maintained, with daily cleaning to a very high standard.
-Breakfast could be busy but there was a good selection, although our daughter wanted the Mickey waffles every day anyway.
-The pool isn’t huge but was always quiet in the evenings and most times we had it virtually to ourselves.
-Location is very close to Downtown Disney and not far from any of the parks (Magic Kingdom is furthest away and is about 20 minutes drive time).
-There are restaurants close by (mainly in the Crossroads complex) as well as being relatively close to those on International Drive.

We had a room on the 5th floor at the end of the corridor so was extremely quiet and we didn’t get disturbed once, but I would imagine that the ground floor (especially in the rooms between reception and the lifts) could be noisy.

Highly recommend this Hampton Inn and thank you to all the staff there for making our stay so enjoyable.

Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn

So we were really quite sad to leave.  Just took a few shots of the hotel on the way out.

Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn
Hampton Inn

magic-kingdom-logoWe had decided to spend a little time at the Magic Kingdom this morning and after packing everything into the teeny tiny car we had, which was quite a task as we now had an extra suitcase to get in, we headed down to the parks for the last time this trip.

The weather was a bit suspect so we had fingers crossed that it would be OK.

We had FastPasses for Dumbo as our first thing and headed through the park to get there. It was straight through the line and onto the ride, which in some ways was a pity as there is lots of play stuff inside the big top.  But we didn’t have lots of time in park today as we’d have to leave for the airport, so it meant we could spend time doing something else.

Dumbo
Dumbo

After the ride (I rode separately and ended up two behind as someone charged in front of me and grabbed the closest elephant). We had a look in the big top area and at the amazing cakes and candy apples.

Hmmm...cake
Hmmm…cake

Julia and Rosemary decided they wanted to ride Goofy’s Barnstormer, so I left them to it and took some pictures from the sidelines.

Goofy's Barnstormer
Goofy’s Barnstormer
Goofy's Barnstormer
Goofy’s Barnstormer

Our second FastPass was for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin.  And Rosemary drank lots of blue Powerade.

 

Powerade
Powerade

To be honest I had no idea what we were meant to be doing, but we had lots of fun on the ride and tried to shoot pretty much everything we could.  Rosemary ended up in Zerg prison.

Zerg!
Zerg!

We got some lunch at Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe and as we sat down the rain started.  And it came down heavier than probably any other point during our stay.  It kept going for quite some time as well and everyone was coming in to shelter.  We had a third FastPass for the Enchanted Tales with Belle and were beginning to think we wouldn’t make it there without being soaked, but it did stop and we managed to get to our slot.

Rosemary played Belle’s father and had to pretend to be in prison.

Enchanted Tales
Enchanted Tales
Enchanted Tales
Enchanted Tales

And that was the end of what we could squeeze in for the day and for our stay.  Just time to take a few last minute photos of a very wet Magic Kingdom on the way out.

Enchanted Tales
Enchanted Tales
Rapunzel's Tower
Rapunzel’s Tower
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom

We headed from the park to the airport and dropped off our car and headed into the airport.  The security line and customs was all very painless and we flew out on time.

On our way home
On our way home

A great trip as ever!

Posted in Florida 2015

2nd August 2015 (Day 10): Magic Kingdom

magic-kingdom-logoBack to the Magic Kingdom again today!

Our second visit having come a few days ago. Planning a relatively low key visit though as energy levels were a bit low and the weather was still not ideal, with quite a bit of rain. We had booked to have an early lunch at Be Our Guest so wanted to just get a couple of things in before that and then spend some time afterwards on some rides.

We went towards Fantasy Land first and went on the Mad Hatters Teacup ride, which Rosemary loves and just wants to spin faster and faster (in the video at the end so no photos of this).

Unfortunately the weather turned on us again after this after visiting a few shops we headed over to Be Our Guest for our 10:55am reservation.  We booked this quite late so this was all that was available as would have preferred a little later.

The entrance was really impressive.

Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest

Ordering is a little confusing for a first timer.  You queue up and choose and then pay at the till.  We’re then told to go and find a table and our food will find us.  We had read that you get a Rose to put on the table, but no such offer.  So bit confused we found a good table in the main ballroom.  And pretty quickly our food appears.  Found out they find you from your Magic Band.  Big Brother Mouse truly is watching!

The Ballroom
The Ballroom

Rosemary had chicken and Julia had the French Onion Soup, which was excellent.  I had the beef sandwich.

Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest

And of course we had to have the Grey Stuff cupcake.  We’d heard it’s delicious.  It was!

Grey Stuff
Grey Stuff

The Ballroom is amazing and was Julia’s favourite of the 3 rooms.  I preferred Beast’s room where there is a holographic rose.

The Ballroom
The Ballroom
Rose
Rose

We all thought it was an amazing place to have lunch and really glad we booked it.  The level of detail is just so high, including the picture which changes when there is lightning in Beast’s room.

After lunch we went to Mickey’s Philharmagical show and then used our FastPasses to do another princess visit.  This time Cinderella and Rapunzel in the Princess Fairytale Hall.

Cinderella
Cinderella
Cinderella-Autograph
Cinderella-Autograph
Rapunzel
Rapunzel
Rapunzel-Autograph
Rapunzel-Autograph

Both fantastic, as you would expect.  Rapunzel saw Rosemary’s dress and declared that she wasn’t needed and sent Rosemary over to her meet-and-greet spot while she stayed back with us.

We then used our second FastPass for the Peter Pan ride.  Only ever done this once before because the queue is crazy, but with the FastPass we were only in a few minutes.

Peter Pan
Peter Pan

We headed back through the park to Tomorrowland as we wanted to do an absolute classic attraction which we have never done, the Carousel of Progress.  It’s sort of hidden away in the back and we thought it was about time we saw it.  Well, we’ve done it now anyway.  Kind of OK, quite dated and the music gets under your skin.

Carousel of Progress
Carousel of Progress

When we came out Buzz Lightyear was doing his meet and greet under a bit of shelter just to the side.  He even came out and gestured for everyone to come under the shelter so they didn’t get wet.

To Infinity
To Infinity
Buzz Lightyear-Autograph
Buzz Lightyear-Autograph

After seeing Buzz it was emptying again so we went around on the Carousel of Progress for a second time.  Took the opportunity to have a quick nap.  But then it was improving again and we went to go on the River Boat as a nice little trip and, again, an opportunity to have a sit down.

Liberty River Boat
Liberty River Boat

As we came back we caught the very end of a parade, so stayed for a few minutes to watch.

Parade
Parade

And finally on the way out we used our final FastPass to see Tinker Bell.  She had moved since our last visit and was now at the Town Hall.  I thought the previous location was better and it’s now just Tink (last time you got another Fairy as well, which was Periwinkle when we went).

Tinker Bell
Tinker Bell
Tinker Bell-Autograph
Tinker Bell-Autograph

So, that was the end of the day at Magic Kingdom.  Weather has been a bit bad for the last couple of days but we hadn’t let that spoil anything and just moved our plans around to suit.

Posted in Florida 2015

26th July 2015 (Day 3): Magic Kingdom

magic-kingdom-logoAn early start today as we want to get into the Magic Kingdom for the actual park opening time (or rope drop as it’s known), so we just grabbed a few muffins from the buffet and jumped in the car.  Our sat nav decided to take us on a tour of the back roads around the park to a car park entrance that didn’t actually exist but we eventually arrived at the right spot and parked up.  As it was early we could walk to the main entrance rather than get the tram and once in the entrance area we got the boat across.

Do wish it was just a little easier to actually make it into the park itself.

We were at the entrance about 15 minutes before 9am and there is a little ceremony with Mickey and some characters to mark the park actually opening.

Waiting for Park Opening
Waiting for Park Opening

Our reason for getting there particularly early, apart from we hoped to get dinner not too late and go for a swim, was that we had been unable to secure FastPasses for a visit to see Anna and Elsa which was Rosemary’s top thing she wanted to do.  They go instantly 60 days beforehand apparently and as we were staying off site we could only book our FastPasses 30 days ahead.  So we headed directly to the Princess Fairytale Hall in the hope of getting ahead of the queues.  Our strategy worked and we got in without too much waiting.

We met Anna first who was constantly chatting and quite goofy.

Meeting Princess Anna
Meeting Princess Anna
Meeting Princess Anna
Meeting Princess Anna
Meeting Princess Anna
Meeting Princess Anna

Then onto Princess (or should that be Queen) Elsa who was much more formal.

Princess Elsa
Princess Elsa
Princess Elsa
Princess Elsa
Princess Elsa
Princess Elsa

With our priority out of the way we took a few minutes and had some brunch at Sleepy Hollow.  Waffle and Funnelcake with strawberries.

Sleepy Hollow snacks
Sleepy Hollow snacks
Sleepy Hollow snacks
Sleepy Hollow snacks

Went down very nicely.

And a quick picture of our MagicBands.  We got these yesterday at Disney Springs and they worked really well.  Might add a little separate post about them at some point.

MagicBands
MagicBands

We headed off to go on It’s A Small World and found a pressed penny machine, the first of what no doubt would be many.

Pressed Pennies
Pressed Pennies

It’s A Small World (despite being infuriatingly annoying with the incessant song) is the only thing we’ve been on with Rosemary each time we’ve visited the Magic Kingdom so might become the one must do ride in the future to keep that going. And it was just an annoying as always…

It's A Small World
It’s A Small World

The queues were starting to build by this time (it was probably about 10.30) and we thought we’d probably manage a couple more things before it was time to start using up our pre-booked FastPasses.  The queue for the Carousel was very small so I took Rosemary straight on for a ride.

Prince Charming's Carousel
Prince Charming’s Carousel
Prince Charming's Carousel
Prince Charming’s Carousel
Prince Charming's Carousel
Prince Charming’s Carousel

That was lots of fun and then we hit up our first FastPass, which was a visit to Ariel in her underwater grotto.  She’s in mermaid form there and Rosemary didn’t get to see her on our previous visit.  Nice setting but could have been a bit more detailed I thought, just seemed a little sparse.

Princess Ariel
Princess Ariel
Princess Ariel
Princess Ariel

And as the Under the Sea-Journey of the Little Mermaid ride was next door we decided to tick that off as well and used our FastPasses to do this.  No really good pictures from the ride this time.

Under the Sea
Under the Sea
Under the Sea
Under the Sea

Deciding it was time to seek out some food we walked back through FantasyLand without any great plan beyond that we were heading towards AdventureLand for our third and final FastPass of the day.  On the way we went past Rapunzel’s tower and rediscovered the decoration in the toilets (frying pans from the Tangled movie).

Rapunzel's Tower
Rapunzel’s Tower
Wall Art
Wall Art

We ended up at Peco Bill’s for lunch and managed to find a relatively quiet area upstairs where there were a few tables.  Place was packed and is huge.

Peco Bill's
Peco Bill’s

Unfortunately the Pirates of the Caribbean ride was closed during our visit for a major upgrade so no chance to go on this time.

Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean

And so onto our third FastPass of the day and what we thought would likely be our final thing as well, the Jungle Cruise.  The queue for this is always crazy on stand-by and a FastPass is a real must for it.  With the MagicBands blipped on the way in we were straight to the front and on the boat within a few minutes.  It’s just as nutty as I remember it, with awful jokes and puns from the Captain. Great fun!

Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise

The heat and humidity was massive by this time.  One tip we had read which was brilliant was to just go upto any kiosk or counter and ask for some ice water and you will get a cup for free.  We did this regularly throughout our trip and it a) saved a fortune on soft drinks and b) keeps you hydrated.  When the water was gone we’d add the ice to our water bottle to keep that cold. But we did get some Dole Whip (much to Julia’s delight as she had missed out the last few times) and I tried the Citrus Swirl, which was very nice.

Dole Whip
Dole Whip
Citrus Swirl
Citrus Swirl

So at this point we thought we’d probably be leaving the park (about 2:30 I think) but as we were wandering out via a very indirect route we spotted that the Haunted Mansion had virtually no queue.  So “never miss an opportunity” is a good motto at Disney and we went in.  Last time we went on this it broke down (on a Friday 13th no less) so fingers crossed we’d have no such trouble this time.  Rosemary remembered this though and was a little hesitant to get on it. No such problems this time and we had the Hat Box Ghost in a Doom Buggy at the end.

Haunted Mansion
Haunted Mansion

We were sort of getting a second wind by this point and there was a Princess encounter just about to start in the Heritage House with Tiana.  It was lovely and cool inside so we sat down in there and waited the 10 minutes or so for Tiana to arrive. She was very nice and it was another Princess who Rosemary hadn’t previously met (that was 4 today).

Princess Tiana
Princess Tiana
Princess Tiana
Princess Tiana

But by now it really was time to leave as we had left the hotel before 8am and were still a bit jet lagged.  But couldn’t believe how many things we;d got done in a single day.

Just time on the way out for some photos in front of the castle.

Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom

We headed back to the car, eventually after going on the monorail and walking back through the parking, and grabbed a quick dinner at Perkin’s close to the hotel.

Mac and Cheese
Mac and Cheese

Long post but a busy day!

If you would like to watch a video of some of the day it can be found on YouTube.

And finally for the day, a quick swim at the hotel:

 

Posted in Florida 2013

13th December 2013 (Day 12): Magic Kingdom, Downtown Disney and T-Rex

magic-kingdom-logoSo back to start the day at the Magic Kingdom.  This is the 4th day’s useage of the ticket we bought, so we have 1 more day to use on it before it runs out.

As mentioned in previous posts the Kingdom was really dressed up for the holidays and this included the shop window with Christmas Minnie and Mickey.

Christmas Mickey
Christmas Mickey
Christmas Minnie
Christmas Minnie

As we weren’t going to be staying that long today (but it was our last visit this trip the Magic Kingdom) we made sure to get some shots in front of the Castle.

Cinderella's Castle
Cinderella’s Castle

We went on the Haunted Mansion ride after this but would you believe it broke down.  Now look at the date of this visit and I can tell you it was a Friday.  So Friday 13th struck and we were in the ride for ages, and eventually they turned all the lights on and walked us out.  Bit of a shame but we got a free Fastpass and got to see how it all worked.  Mainly wires in case you were wondering.

So we headed to the Princess Fairytale Hall again, this time to meet some other Princesses.  They have one advertised as being there but the second one isn’t revealed until you get in.  You had the choice of Rapunzel (who we met on our previous visit) or Cinderella.  And today was Cinderella’s turn.

Cinderella
Cinderella

And with her today was Sleeping Beauty.

Sleeping Beauty
Sleeping Beauty

She was so nice and gave the biggest hug.

Sleeping Beauty
Sleeping Beauty

We then went over to Adventureland to see Tinkerbelle.  The queue was  pretty bad and we had to wait 45 minutes, which is about the longest wait we’d had at that time. Pixie Hollow is entered through some magic doors which shrink you down to pixie size.

Tinkerbelle
Tinkerbelle

And with Tinkerbelle was Periwinkle.

Periwinkle
Periwinkle

One thing I hadn’t mentioned previously is that all the characters (or nearly all) were giving out Christmas wishes.  These were little cards with a picture and their autograph on them and a little wish.  Made a great keepsake.

Next door to the Princess Hall there was Peter Pan and the queue was really small, so we went on that.

Peter Pan
Peter Pan

And same for It’s a Small World.

It's a Small World
It’s a Small World

We decided to use our Fastpass for the Pirates of the Caribbean.  Rosemary really enjoyed this, even the drop to go down to the main bit.  Pretty sure this is only a few feet but it felt huge and we both lunged for her to keep her from falling out.  Completely unnecessary though…

Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean

And at this point we passed out again….

Asleep...again
Asleep…again

We drove over to Downtown Disney to go to T-Rex Cafe.

T-Rex
T-Rex

Rosemary was still quite sleepy but soon woke up when we were inside.

T-Rex
T-Rex

Here drink had flashing LED lights in it which was fab.

T-Rex
T-Rex

Wont upload too many pictures of the dinosaurs, but I did particularly like the mammoth.

Mammoth
Mammoth
Posted in Florida 2013

11th December 2013 (Day 10): Magic Kingdom

magic-kingdom-logoOff the most magic place on earth today!

The Magic Kingdom.

The park was really decorated for Christmas.  We’d been in October once before and there was a lot of Halloween decorations out then, so we were expecting it to be quite spectacular.

 

Christmas Decorations
Christmas Decorations

The first thing we did was go to Mickey’s Philharmagical show (we had to grab Fastpasses for later right beside there and there was no queue, and when you see something you want to do with no queue-you do it).  It’s a 3D show with extra bits like getting squirted with water.  You have to wear your 3D glasses though, not a look everyone can pull off.

Philharmagical
Philharmagical

Back near the castle we bumped into the Fairy Godmother who was doing a short meet and greet.

Fairy Godmother
Fairy Godmother

Rosemary’s favourite Disney film is Tangled and her favourite princess is Rapunzel so we had to go and visit her tower.

Rapunzel's Tower
Rapunzel’s Tower

And we were pretty impressed that the level of detailing included the men’s toilets where there are frying pans instead of mirrors.

Rapunzel World
Rapunzel World
Rapunzel World
Rapunzel World

We walked through to New Fantasyland, which is a major extension to the park which was still in the process of being completed.  You go past the Be Our Guest restaurant which has an illusion of Beast’s castle over it.

Beast's Castle
Beast’s Castle

And headed to Gaston’s Tavern.  They serve the biggest warm cinnamon rolls I’ve ever seen and we had that with the strongest coffee I have ever drunk.

Gaston's Tavern
Gaston’s Tavern

We were so hyped up on caffeine and sugar we braved sitting in Gaston’s chair.

Gaston's Chair
Gaston’s Chair

We then went on the Under the Sea ride, which is based on the Little Mermaid.

Under the Sea
Under the Sea

And from there up to the top of Fantasyland to go on the Dumbo ride.  They’ve changed this so you get a buzzer when you go in and then the children can go off and play.  You’re buzzer goes when it’s your time to join the queue for the ride itself.  Great idea and far less boring that standing in line.

Dumbo
Dumbo

We then used our Fastpasses I’d got earlier to go to the Princess Fairytale Hall. At this point Rosemary didn’t know what we were doing next. We were of course going to meet Rapunzel.  She was a bit speechless and awe struck I think.

Rapunzel
Rapunzel

We also got to meet Snow White at the same time.

Snow White
Snow White

We queued up for what seemed like a very long time to see Merida, but she was really lovely and her New Jersey accent only slipped through a couple of times (could have been what she thought a Scottish accent sounded like though).

Merida
Merida

A snack was in order by this time and we had Cheshire Cupcake Cake Cup at the Cheshire Cafe.  It was sort of a cupcake with cream swirled in.  Went down very well.

Snack time
Snack time

We were staying for the fireworks in the evening and fortunately Rosemary decided to have a nap so we went to the shops to have a browse.

Nap Time
Nap Time

There were soft toys galore.

Mickey
Mickey
Minnie
Minnie

The night-time parade was just before the fireworks and was amazing.

Parade
Parade

But nothing like the castle which was covered in lights for Christmas and were all constantly changing colour.

Cinderella's Castle
Cinderella’s Castle
Cinderella's Castle
Cinderella’s Castle

And the fireworks were stunning as well. We weren’t in the best place to see them but it was relatively quiet and we still got an excellent view.

Fireworks
Fireworks

After that there was nothing to do but cope with the vast crowds who were all leaving at the same time to get the boat back to the entrance and then the tram back to the car park.  Think it took about an hour just to get out….