Posted in Florida 2016

21st December 2016 (Day 4)-Rest and Shopping

We decided to take a break today so we could completely get over the tiredness of travel, get an absolutely full nights sleep and do some shopping.  We had originally planned to go to Typhoon Lagoon today, but as the temperature had dropped overnight and it wasn’t going to be such a nice day we decided to drop it and instead had a late breakfast and headed to the Vineland Avenue outlet stores.

We got a few bits in the Disney outlet (Character Warehouse) store including some lollies for Rosemary which stained her tongue pretty badly.

Will that ever come off?

We also popped to the outlets at the end of International Drive afterwards to have the quickest look there. Not as much of interest and the Disney outlet store was definitely not as well stocked.

After deciding we were shopped out we drove back down International Drive looking for somewhere to eat and decided on TGI Friday. Where they had cheap cocktails and Julia tried an Appletini.

Appletini

And we even caught some Pokemon.

Pokemon

Then early to bed so we would have plenty of energy for the Magic Kingdom tomorrow.

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Posted in Florida 2013

3rd December 2013 (Day 2): Relaxing

outletSo first day in Florida, with glorious weather and much hotter than December in the UK.  We decided to have a nice quite day to get over the extremely long day from travelling and get some shopping in.

But first we went to Perkins for some breakfast.

Breakfast at Perkins
Breakfast at Perkins

After that we went  to both the International Drive shops and Vineland Avenue outlets and got a few things.  Mainly for Rosemary.

Shopping
Shopping

For dinner we went back to Perkins for a light dinner and an early bed time.

Perkins
Perkins
Posted in Florida 2012

18th March 2012 (Day 7): Relaxing Day

After several days of hectic activity and already having visited 3 theme parks we had a day off (Sunday as it happens) to relax, do a bit of shopping and take things slow.

outletWe went to the top of International Drive to the outlet stores there and had quite a successful few hours looking around and getting quite a few bargains, including some designer stuff for Rosemary. Including Tommy Hilfiger and Ralph Laren Polo.  Got myself some bargain walking boots in North Face which were reduced from $120 to $24.  Great deal as they were 80% off.  Woohoo!

Shopped Out
Shopped Out

TRexWe decided to go to Downtown Disney to have a look around the shops there but first headed straight for the T-Rex restaurant for dinner.

This is a big, big restaurant which is themed with animatronic dinosaurs and was really popular to the extent that even though we were really early for dinner we still had to put our names on the list.  Fortunately we really didn’t have to wait very long before being led all the way through the restaurant to our table.

The designers had done a good job and there is foliage everywhere (all false I’m sure) and there are dinosaurs visible everywhere.  We had some leaning directly over our heads.  They move a little bit all the time but every 15 minutes there is a meteor storm when the lights go down and there is lots of flashing and noise.  The dinosaurs move a lot during this and the “ice cave” changes colour. (apologies for the poor photos but I only took my iPhone and the little Canon Ixus camera went flat because I had forgotten to charge it the night before).

T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex
T-Rex

The food, considering the massive size of the place and the fact that people probably don’t really go there for the food, was actually pretty good.  Rosemary particularly enjoyed her macaroni cheese.

Mac and Cheese
Mac and Cheese

And the non-alcoholic cocktail (which was quite frankly revolting) went down quite well.  Not sure the colourings were a very healthy option though.

Cocktails
Cocktails

(Incidently, still don’t like the flash on the iPhone4S which always seems to wash everything out.)

Some posed shots with the dinosaurs.

Mammoth
Mammoth
He bites
He bites
With the T-Rex
With the T-Rex

That’s the same dinosaur as in the picture above but he had bent right down and was trying to bite us.  Rosemary wasn’t too worried though.

By the time we left the queues were really big.

Outside
Outside

Downtown_Disney_Area_LogoOnce we had eaten we had a walk around the shops in Downtown Disney, where there is a really huge Disney shop selling literally everything you would ever want that has a pair of mouse ears on it.

Disney Store
Disney Store

Regretted not bringing my SLR as there were a lot of opportunities for some good pictures amongst the items on the shelves.  Had a go with the phone camera but not as good.

Dolls
Dolls
Mickeys
Mickeys
Mickey
Mickey

Walking back through we couldn’t help stopping at the Candy Cauldron to have a look at the Toffee Apples which they make in the shape of Mickey Mouse ears.

Toffee Apples
Toffee Apples
Toffee Apples
Toffee Apples
Toffee Apples
Toffee Apples

Finally, a picture with Mr Potato Head.

Mr Potato Head
Mr Potato Head
Posted in Florida 2012

13th March 2012 (Day 2): Chilling

Hawthorn Suites
Hawthorn Suites

So a few more words about the Hawthorn Suites where we stayed. It’s a good value hotel but some of it is a bit basic.  The general decor is a little tired and maybe in need of a little update but the staff were really friendly and for the price it is really good value for money.  I have read that the hotel is due to be rennovated in the next 12 months which would be good but hopefully wont affect the price too much. The hotel is just off International Drive, just down Sandlake Road, and would be a short walk to the restaurants on I-Drive, although we always drove I will confess.  As with everything in the US, you drive everywhere. There is a complimentary breakfast each morning which is cereals and a couple of hot dishes (eggs, sausage or bacon etc).  Nothing fancy but it is free and we used it a few times when we wanted to get something quickly before going out for the day. We had a twin queen room, so you get a bedroom, living area with dining table and small kitchen area and separate bathroom.  This worked well for us as it meant we could put Rosemary to bed and then stay up a bit longer ourselves.

Hawthorn Suites
Hawthorn Suites

Our bedroom included a small child.

Hawthorn Suites
Hawthorn Suites

Kitchen including the banana thief.

Hawthorn Suites
Hawthorn Suites

Our room overlooked the swimming pool which was nice. We wanted a quiet day to start our trip so decided to go to breakfast at Perkins and then head to Walmart to stock up on food and snacks, nappies and such like.

Then went to the outlet stores and see what was available.  Started off at the Vineland Avenue stores.  Not very much unfortunately and some of the reductions weren’t very good.  Just got a few things here and there, the Timberland store had the best offers I think.  In one store they had a $100+ pair of trainers reduced by 60c.  What a bargain! Mainly things bought for Rosemary really as the children’s clothes were where the best offers were. So not as successful as we’ve had in the past.

We went to dinner on International Drive at the Ming Court restaurant on International Drive. Which was quite nice.  Food was OK, but portions were much bigger than really needed for 1 person and Julia’s food was a bit cold when it came out.  Rosemary enjoyed her’s which was a nice box with various things in it. The decor was quite cool with a huge Chinese dragon on ceiling and Chinese roofs  throughout the restaurant.

Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court

Enjoying the Fortune Cookies.

Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court
Ming Court

So nice quiet day and getting used to the temperature (mid 20’s oC) and overcoming the jetlag.