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Old 11-22-2012, 09:54 AM   #1
cheryterese
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Returning for afternoon swim? Worth it?

Our upcoming Feb. trip will be our first on-site trip with the kids and also the first of our family trips where kids will not need to return for a nap. (We stayed off-site on our last two trips and returned almost every day for naps, rental house was a quick 15 minute drive except for MK which took about 35 with the added TTC stop).

We will be staying at POR and I know the kids will want to swim every day. My question is, is it worth it, time-wise, to return to our resort in the afternoons to swim? How long should we plan for, with bus transportation, to get to and from the parks to our resort?

Our kids are not night owls, so I'm wondering if a better option would be to stay at the parks from opening until just after dinner and then return to our resort around 7pm to swim until bedtime. 9pm is stretching it for them.

It will be February, so I'm thinking the warmest time for swimming will be in the afternoon.

Just not sure how to plan and would welcome any thoughts and suggestions. Thanks!
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:58 AM   #2
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Personally - I LOVE going back to the resort for an afternoon swim. I know people that highly disagree and think its a waste. But I really enjoy it! If the kids want to swim, go for it!
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:04 AM   #3
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Judging from the ages of your kids, I'd say you're still going to need a mid-day break. Even if they don't nap, they'll probably benefit from some down-time. My DS was 5 on our last trip and was way past the napping stage at home, but he napped several days on our trip.

Also, swimming will be best at the warmest part of the day. The pools are heated, but we found it too cold to swim at night even in April.
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:06 AM   #4
cheryterese
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How long should I plan to take the bus to the resort, swim and take the bus back? Thanks!
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Planning a 2014 trip to celebrate our son's 10th!
February 6th - February 12th 2013 ~ Port Orleans Riverside ~ Mom's Birthday Trip!
October 26th - November 7th 2011 ~ Off site ~ Second Family Trip
January 26th - February 4th 2010 ~ Off site ~ First Family Trip
April 2004 ~ Port Orleans French Quarter
August 2002 ~ Wilderness Lodge (Honeymoon!)
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:16 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by cheryterese View Post
How long should I plan to take the bus to the resort, swim and take the bus back? Thanks!
Maybe 3 hours depending on how long it takes you to get them out of the park and then out of the pool and dressed.

The big issue is when are you going. Some weeks in Feb they have pretty short hours, so the parks such as AK will only be open until 6 (I have seen 5) so you only have 9 hours of park time. MK until maybe 8.
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:18 AM   #6
cheryterese
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Right now the posted schedule has MK until 9 or 10 and Epcot until 9. We will be at AK one day and it's 9-7 and we will probably just stay all day that day.
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Planning a 2014 trip to celebrate our son's 10th!
February 6th - February 12th 2013 ~ Port Orleans Riverside ~ Mom's Birthday Trip!
October 26th - November 7th 2011 ~ Off site ~ Second Family Trip
January 26th - February 4th 2010 ~ Off site ~ First Family Trip
April 2004 ~ Port Orleans French Quarter
August 2002 ~ Wilderness Lodge (Honeymoon!)
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Old 11-23-2012, 12:58 AM   #7
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The big issue is when are you going. Some weeks in Feb they have pretty short hours, so the parks such as AK will only be open until 6 (I have seen 5) so you only have 9 hours of park time. MK until maybe 8.
l agree - to me it depends on how late the parks are open. I find the "take an afternoon break" advice only works when the parks are open pretty late. You'll often even see advice from people that says you should return to the parks "after dinner" -- but that doesn't work if the park closes at 7:00!

I go in October, and regular closing times for the parks range from 5:00 (AK) to 9:00 (Epcot) -- pretty early. I skip afternoon breaks because I feel they eat into prime park time. I'd rather be in the parks all day then go back to the resort after dinner (and sometimes hit the pool after dinner).
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:07 AM   #8
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I also agree with heading back to the resort. I love leaving the parks when things are getting crazy and returning to a nice slower paced resort. It won't seem like a waste, it will seem like a relief!
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:44 AM   #9
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I'm an adult with no little kids and I need the break. I don't always swim. But it's just so nice to hang out in the room and be off my feet for a few hours.

But since you mentioned that your kids aren't night owls and it may work better just to keep going until dinnertime and then leave for the night. You will miss the nighttime fireworks doing this though.

So why not try it both ways - one day take a break and then go back for fireworks and other day stay all day and leave after 7pm.
See which works best for your family.

Have a great time in February!
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:22 AM   #10
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Orlando, February - the sun sets around 6:15pm, and the average low temp is 50. I wouldn't count on it being warm enough to swim after sunset, so go much earlier. The pools are heated, but getting in & out of them can be freezing.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:26 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by GaSleepingBeautyFan View Post
I'm an adult with no little kids and I need the break. I don't always swim. But it's just so nice to hang out in the room and be off my feet for a few hours.

But since you mentioned that your kids aren't night owls and it may work better just to keep going until dinnertime and then leave for the night. You will miss the nighttime fireworks doing this though.

So why not try it both ways - one day take a break and then go back for fireworks and other day stay all day and leave after 7pm.
See which works best for your family.

Have a great time in February!
what a great suggestion.

i would just like to add, the weather can be unpredictable in feb.
we packed for warm weather, and it was freezing cold-there were days when it was frosty-but still bright and fresh.
certainly not swimming weather! however, i would still say yes to breaks.
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Old 11-22-2012, 12:14 PM   #12
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Just a thought - if you are taking the break because your kids want to swim, and consider that part of the Disney experience, great.

But if you are taking the break to give your kids some rest/downtime...I wouldn't expect it to function that way. Getting out of the park, back to the resort, changing, swimming (exhausting), changing again, getting back to the parks, etc. is a lot of walking and a takes a lot of energy and is probably more tiring than just staying in the park and doing some easy stuff in the afternoon (like Hall of Presidents or Ellen's Energy Adventure or a show at DHS).
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Old 11-22-2012, 12:35 PM   #13
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We never use to take a break before. Without a break, we'd be done with the parks around 7pm. too tired to go on. then we switched it up and decided to take breaks. Its so much better that way! We swim, or just chill out in the room. Quite often im the one napping while my DS12 does his own thing. LOL! We love the midday breaks!! We can stay out much later that way, and we're in a much better mood overall. Youre on vacation, do what you want.
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Old 11-22-2012, 12:41 PM   #14
cheryterese
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We never use to take a break before. Without a break, we'd be done with the parks around 7pm. too tired to go on. then we switched it up and decided to take breaks. Its so much better that way! We swim, or just chill out in the room. Quite often im the one napping while my DS12 does his own thing. LOL! We love the midday breaks!! We can stay out much later that way, and we're in a much better mood overall. Youre on vacation, do what you want.

Our last two trips were kind of commando and I really want this one to be more relaxed (it's my birthday trip!). It's also shorter than our other two family trips and dh and I are planning on hitting favorites rather than everything. I know the kids will want to swim. It's as much fun for them as the parks. I think I will plan for the afternoon swims and then just change midway if it's not working. We'll be there at the beginning of February so I don't think our plan should have to be too rigid, other than those darn ADR's!
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Planning a 2014 trip to celebrate our son's 10th!
February 6th - February 12th 2013 ~ Port Orleans Riverside ~ Mom's Birthday Trip!
October 26th - November 7th 2011 ~ Off site ~ Second Family Trip
January 26th - February 4th 2010 ~ Off site ~ First Family Trip
April 2004 ~ Port Orleans French Quarter
August 2002 ~ Wilderness Lodge (Honeymoon!)
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Old 11-22-2012, 03:08 PM   #15
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I say follow your kids lead and do what works best for them. If a midday break if enough to get them ready to head back to the parks for the evening, then go for it. I would think 3 hours is probably the time you're looking at for being away between transportation and swimming.

With my DS4, the midday break didn't work well for him. He is not a night owl at all and starts to fade at 7 and is in bed by 8, when we're at home. So on our last trip, we had the most success with starting with an early ADR for breakfast and doing that park until he was done/too tired. Some days that was mid afternoon, some days it was supper time, whenever that was, we'd head back to the resort and he'd enjoy the rest of his awake time in the pool. The one exception was the night we did the Wishes Dessert Party, we did the midday break and he loved swimming in the afternoon. The problem was, he wasn't all that keen on heading back to the park at 6:00 and it was a bit of a fight to get him there. He ended up enjoying the party and was the one time he saw the fireworks, but he was totally wrecked the next morning because he wasn't in bed until almost 11:00.
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