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Old 08-08-2012, 07:21 PM   #1
Yellow Sub
Earning My Ears
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Illinois
Posts: 14

Crowds but no lines - brief report from 8/3/12-8/7/12

Hi everyone,

DW and DS's (6 and 3) just came back from our second trip to WDW. I thought I'd share some highlights.

We stayed at AKL which was a great resort. We had a standard view room that let us see some savannah if we stood on our toes. I'd say we didn't take many opportunities to view the animals as we might have, but no complaints about the lodge itself.

Friday:


We got in around 3 pm and explored the room and lodge. We had an early dinner at Boma's which was as good as advertised. The butternut squash soup was the best thing DW and I ever tasted. We did a little more exploring and tried to get an early night sleep.

Saturday:

Got to MK just in time for rope drop. We hustled down to Dumbo and found no line at all. Both Dumbos were running, and the new circus theme and queue was cool. We asked to stay on since nobody was really in line after our first ride and got to. Then we got Peter Pan FP and did Pooh. Then Peter Pan. Very few people in Fantasyland the first hour after opening. Then on to Haunted Mansion and FP for Splash Mountain. (Youngest DS was just 40", and both kids loved it.) We were able to do all of our Fantasyland and Frontierland attractions by noon. It started to get busy, but hardly anyone was in a line. Then we did our Adventureland things and made our way to the 3 pm parade when it started to rain. After the parade we called it a day because we did everything we wanted to do. We really never stayed in a line all day, probably because we were smart about FP's, but it seemed everyone was walking around but not doing attractions! Crowd might have been a 7-8 (which was predicted), but it was perfectly manageable.

We had a relaxing afternoon at AKL and dinner at the Mara. We were happy to see you could order the butternut squash soup.

Sunday:

EPCOT day. We arrived a little after 9 am and went to get FP for Soarin' while we did Living with the Land (which our kids love). Then Soarin' which was my first time--loved it. Then we spent a lot of time doing the Agent P adventures which were amazingly done. I loved how detailed everything was, how carefully integrated into the country themes the props were, and how well the technology worked. P&F lovers MUST do at least one adventure.

Lunch at Tangerine Cafe in Morocco and then back to AKL around 2 pm or so. We went back to EPCOT for an hour or so around 5 pm and then went to POR just to check it out. We had dinner there, took the boat to DTD, and then bussed back to AKL--took us over an hour to get back to AKL.

Monday:

DHS day. We went straight to TSM at 9 am for a FP and then to Star Tours. No line--we walked right on the shuttle. Excellent ride, the best of my whole trip. We went right out and got right back into the queue for maybe a 3-min wait. Then again. It was 9:45 and we rode ST three times. Then the Great Movie Ride, then DS and I again for ST (maybe 5-min wait). We saw the Indiana Jones stunt show (which was amazingly sophisticated) and did TSM. Lunch at ABC--yuck.

The park was getting pretty crowded but not problematic. After lunch kids played at Honey I Shrunk the Kids while DW and I cooled in some shade. Then it was off to see Playhouse Disney which disappointed me (I didn't know it was puppets, and you could hardly see the puppets because the stage was too high from our front-row "seats"). We went back to AKL around 3 pm and did the pool, then dinner at Mara. Then to bed for an early morning flight out.

Summary:

I think what worked for our family was getting to the parks early, knowing what we wanted to do, and doing it. Leaving mid-afternoon was good for escaping heat and crowds. Bus service was terrific, but it took just long enough that we didn't want to return to each park each evening.

I'm wondering what the actual crowd levels were for our trip. They were supposed to be 7-8, and if that was the case then I wouldn't hesitate to go to a park with those crowd levels. I think crowd levels change throughout the day, so if you're a morning park person then the crowd will be different than if you're an afternoon park person. Also, a park can be crowded, but people are not necessarily in line at the attractions you want. At DHS, for example, we weren't interested in Hollywood Tower or Rock'n'Roll Coaster, so those crowds didn't affect us.

Thanks to all of you who helped give advice about our trip before we left. It was a great time, and we're sad that it's over.
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animal kingdom lodge, crowd, epcot, hollywood studios, magic kingdom



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