A trip more than worth the wait!- Updated 5/4/10 Complete
Trip Report Navigation:
Day 1 - Travel
Day 2 - Animal Kingdom (W/Tusker House Breakfast) /
City Walk(Latin Quarter)
Day 3 - Universal Studios / IOA
Day 4 - Hollywood Studios (Sci Fi Dine In)
Day 5 - Typhoon Lagoon / MK and Wishes Party
Day 6 - Nasa / City Walk
Day 7 - Sea World / Cheesecake Factory
Day 8 - Magic Kingdom / DTD
Day 9 - Universal Studios / IOA / HNN
Day 10 - Epcot / DTD
Day 11 - Busch Gardens
Day 12 - Wet and Wild / MNSSHP
Day 13 - Sea World / AK
Day 14 - Hollywood Studios / Epcot
Day 15 - Universal / Home Time
Hello and Welcome(!) to my first trip report from my first WDW trip.
Im hoping to share a lot of pictures in this - We took at least 1500 pictures over the trip and though i wont bore you with them all i hope you like them!
The 2 week trip was this October but until now, i have been too snowed under with essays and presentations and work to write this! But trust me - i have been so excited to write this - to relive the magical memories from the trip with everyone on here! :goodvibes
So to start - the vital details
After an amazing trip to Disneyland Paris when we were first together me and my boyfriend scott fell in love with Disney parks and he later said that he'd take me to Florida for my 21st :) how amazing ! :cloud9:
Here's a picture of me and Scott in Paris with Sulley - this was in 2007 which seems so long ago now!
His sister and brother in law had been thinking about visiting Florida too so we decided that all 4 of us would go in 2009. We decided October would be perfect because i would be turning 21 so would be old enough to enjoy a cocktail or ten and make use of the year of celebration gift, and that we'd be visiting in a relatively quiet crowd period.
Trip Date - 20th October 2009 for two weeks
We booked everything in January and since about March I'd been counting down each and every day and turning into a crazy WDW trip planner - and can i add I LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT! Heres a picture of the countdown calendar me and Scott made for our living room wall.
Trip Details - Flying Aberdeen - Sciphol, Sciphol - Detroit, Detroit - Orlando Florida! with KLM - this would be a long flight but we saved a lot of money doing it this way.
Staying - at Ramada International Drive, as we'd be driving and visiting many of orlando's attractions this would be an affordable hotel in a great location - basic but this would be fine as we'd spend most of our time having fun!
So now thats the basics out of the way I can start writing my trip report :woohoo:
Lovely start thanks for posting it. It's always exciting counting down to the holiday, I think it adds to the time to come all the planning and just thinking about what you will be doing. Looking forward to reading more and seeing your photos.
Great start, looking forward to the rest. :goodvibes
Yay! Looking forward to hearing about your trip! :thumbsup2
Can't wait to read your report and see the photos! The big question.. have you booked for next year yet!!? lol :woohoo:
Can't wait to hear more :thumbsup2
Great start :)
Great start :)
Day 1 - Its time to go!!
Well firstly thanks so much to everyone whose posted already! :goodvibes
So day one! i couldn't believe that we were finally all set to go! :yay: :yay:
After finishing all the last minute packing and getting a few hours sleep, Scott's parents were there to pick us up to go to the airport at about 5am. It didn't matter how early it was though - I was going to Disney! At last! I was in a state of hyper excitement at the same time as disbelief!!
We met Scotts sister (Leanne) and BIL (Roy) at the airport - where me and Leanne got our Minnie Mouse ears on to get into the spirit as soon as possible! (I'd got my ears from Paris and Leannes was part of her MNSSHP costume!)
The journey to Amsterdam and then to Detroit went by in a bit of a blur. We had to run a little bit to our gate in Amsterdam but i think we were being a bit too cautious and actually we had plenty of time!
Unfortunately in the flight to Detroit the television system was broken for the entire flight - so we had to entertain ourselves. But that was quite easy just talking about what we'd be doing over the next two weeks, looking through the planning folder i had made up.
We arrived in Detroit - and wow! It is such an easy an airport in terms of getting through security/customs and finding your way about! Essentially its just a long straight line with a Monorail that runs along it.
Heres a Pic of the monorail system it has going up and down:
and Me and Scott in Detroit!
Waiting at the gate for the Orlando flight was great - there was such a buzz - obviously the majority of the flight passengers were waiting to go to Disney or some of the other Florida parks and you could feel the excitement! Luckily the couple hour flight went by so quickly!! I tried anxiously to see ANYTHING from the plane window but nothing! I'd just have to wait a little longer to see anything :rolleyes:
Luckily as we'd been through customs at Detroit we could get through Orlando airport quite quickly - just picking up our luggage and car hire - stopping and getting excited at our first glimpse of mickey mouse ads! our car was huge - the guys went up to sort out all the car details whilst me and leanne stayed with the suitcases. We had sorted our car hire through the travel agent at home and knew what type of car to expect - but apparently the car hire staff were quite pushy for us to upgrade to a bigger car, for quite a cost! We refused event though they insisted that we would never fit ourselves and our cases in the car we had selected - well we could have fitted an extra person and about 3 extra cases and not been pushed for room if we had wanted!
We navigated to our hotel in International Drive - Ramada Inn Lakeside - right next to Wet and Wild - and it was late by this point - about 9pm. But we were all quite hungry, so we just checked in, seen our rooms - which all overlooked Wet and Wild waterpark and went to get a quick bite. First , here is a picture of our room.
So we strolled down International Drive to a Popeyes - luring us in with a random concept of chicken and BISCUITS? what was this all about? None of us were impressed with Popeyes, but it served its purpose. The whole 'biscuit' thing turned out to be a popular food and was served at so many other places - hehe i still don't quite know what this 'biscuit' is though :rotfl2:
However - our initial impressions of this area of International Drive were very disapointing! After all of the hype that we had heard of here we found it to full of tacky shops and just not what we had expected!
However, this did not dampen our moods, we were still all excited for the day ahead, and i think that IDrive is a great, affordable and central location to stay in Florida - I don't personally think I would return there on our next Florida trip - and a note - i would NEVER stay at this hotel - but more on that later!
So we went to bed, tired but so excited for the next day - Animal Kingdom, our first park - oh and my birthday! :thumbsup2 oh and did i mention - Tusker House breakfast first thing :wizard:
First Park and Birthday Time - Animal Kingdom
We woke up on the 21st of October for our first park day - and to say we were all excited is the biggest understatement ever :rotfl:
We had to be in the park before park opening as we'd scored a 8am ressie for a character breakfast at Tusker House! I think the other 3 were a little nervous of what a character breakfast would be like for 4 adults, but it was my birthday and if i could use that excuse for anything - it was so i could get to go to a character breakfast on our first day! Also i couldn't wait that the first park that we'd be in would be so quiet during our walk to Tusker House!
SO with a mix of (mostly) excitement, not being tired due to time difference and wanting to make sure we didnt get lost on our way to Animal Kingdom and be late for breakfast - we left our hotel very early to have plenty of time and not rushed. However, we actually got there really quick, much quicker than we expected - and turns out we arrived at the car park entrance before they'd even opened the car park!! :laughing: here is some photos of us being very proud of ourselves arriving at Animal Kingdom first
So we got in, parked and through the gates (which for anyone whose never been into a park before its officially open but has a breakfast ressie - its really easy! I was really nervous it would be a bit difficult but not atall!) I picked up my birthday pin and $70 birthday gift card and started to experience the absolutely LOVELY CMs wishing me happy birthday on our walk to Tusker House! Heres a picture of us at an empty park infront of the Tree of Life
So we arrived at Tusker House, and had to queue and get a picture with Donald before we were seated. This took about 5 minutes but as we were queuing my sneaky boyfriend vanished and i couldnt go find him - something was going on! But i was too distracted by Donald - the first character we were going to meet!
I was a little dissapointed that you could only meet Donald here and he wouldnt be mingling around with the other characters at the table. We would have had to pay to get this picture which was a little annoying!
At our table we were given our Jamba Juice - YUMtastics!!! It was a fruity drink that I loved! The buffet had a fantastic selection of treats - Donuts, Mickey Waffles, Eggs, Bacon, Ham, Fruits, Pastries, and more! Here is my plate of goodies - ooh the Mickey Waffles were gooood! I mostly just ate them til I couldn't eat any more :goodvibes
Then Mickey and Co Came - I was so excited to meet Mickey :yay: He gave me a big hug and kiss - and pointing to my birthday badge wished me happy birthday! Awesome! There is a photo of me and him just jumping about so much its just a blur hehe :rolleyes1 Here a bit more calmer pics - Goofys there too which made Scott happy as thats his favourite character
We were just finishing off and then the reason that Scott sneaked off was clear - a Birthday Cake was coming over that he had ordered :cloud9: I felt so special and couldn't believe he would think to do this - he really is the best :love:
A card signed by all the characters there was also sent over which was cool too!
So breakfast was over and we'd already had a great time before the day had even started!
So we went to Kilimanjaro Safaris first, managed to wait by the rope there and get on the first ride of the day - what a day of getting places first :rolleyes:
That was a great experience and was great to just sit and look at everything and take everything in after an exciting hour at breakfast!
After KS we had to hit Expedition Everest! Which turned out to be one of our favourite rides of the entire holiday. That bit going backwards really just takes your breath away its so fun! The queues were practically non existant - in fact the first time was walk on - and we rode the two times in a row (maybe three? I cant quite remember) but we managed to get front row on the second ride and that bit where the track stops before you go backwards we managed to see some disney landmarks in the distance (epcot ball / hollywood studios sorcerors hat) - which gave us a wee buzz!
We grabbed a FP for EE then headed over to Dinoland.
The weather was getting hot - AMAZING! and the park was quite quiet, to be honest it was quiet most of the day! So we went on Primeval Whirl, again very short queuing time which was good fun
Then we walked on to the Dinosaur Dumbo-type ride!
We then had a little rest before heading onto Dinosaur - wow what an amazing ride! You really get excited in this ride :banana:
After grabbing some water we headed back to EE for a couple more rides, then went to see Finding Nemo Musical and OH.My. GOSH!
That show is amazing! I have the music to nearly all of the songs stuck in my head even now - two months later. Crush is super especially. Really, just a mindblowing show - we didnt have the highest expectations or anything for this but so much fun!
From this we went on the River Rapids - quite dissapointing really, I expected it to start just as it finished.
So we grabbed a snack - a Mickey cookie ice cream yum yum on our way to Rafiki's planet watch.
Here we relaxed a little bit, met Rafiki and spent some time brushing goats int he petting zoo.
I actually enjoyed the train journey over seeing a bit of the backstage at Animal Kingdom area
Back into Animal Kingdom and we went to see Its Tough to be Bug (SCARY business there! :scared1: ) then had some lunch in Flame Tree BBQ. which was very delicious.
We were just finishing as the parade had started - this would be the first of many times that we forgot the parades were starting and had to make do with not the best views. Never mind! The parade at AK is good fun :goodvibes
After the parade was ending there wasn't much time before the park closed. So we sauntered to pick my birthday cake up at Tusker House where the lovely people there kept it for us. We then looked through shops - I picked up a cuddly ball Yeti from EE and the first of my pins! I tried to stay away from pins as I knew id get addicted... i did!
We also picked up an arial topper for our car! :banana: We got a Ghost Mickey as it was Haloween time.
and then that was Animal Kingdom. During the whole day we didn't see ONE photopass photographer, we were a little disapointed at this as we were planning on getting this - we did consider leaving it as we didn't have pictures from our first day - but we did get it later on.
Next... The Evening at City Walk
Great first day, looking forward to reading more. :goodvibes
Really enjoying your report, looking forward to the next part. :thumbsup2
Thanks for those updates.
Those biscuits are like plain scones if they are anything like we got with a KFC meal over there.
Great start, looking forward to reading more! :)
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