|12-19-2012, 10:43 AM||#1|
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Dec 2012
First Trip Report EVER!
Hey everyone, I'm sure most of you have no idea who I am actually, I know no one does Let's start with the story...
My name is Steve, I live in wonderful Rhode Island and no, there is no such thing as Quahog Rhode Island...I'm 22 Years young, and pretty much a Disney World fanatic. My first trip ever to the World was in 2010, what a disappointment I know...I missed out on my lovely childhood I guess! Anyhow, from the second I arrived in Florida (after a 22 hour drive) I fell in love with the state. The people (some).. the sights, the palm trees, the weather I guess you could say I was one happy camper. Of course since this was my first time ever being in Florida I wanted to visit a place called "Disney World".
After looking at the website for a few hours, needless to say I was pretty pumped. But, really not sure of how I would feel about it since of course "it's just for kids". Finally the time came and we were on our way to Disney. Just the billboards and highway signs alone started to build my anticipation on arriving...and of course, I saw this.....
What a great sight that is, to finally be somewhere I have always heard people talk about. It all felt so surreal, after a long drive I finally made it. My first park ever was EPCOT, what an amazing park. Again, just driving through Disney made me feel that certain way, that I'm sure most of you know what I am talking about. The first sight of Cinderella's Castle literally is a moment in my life that I will never forget. Standing right at the train station in complete awe...Long story short, after my first trip to the world, I knew it would not be my last.
The second trip came exactly one year later, and This time I was much more prepared. The first trip I basically winged the whole thing and missed a lot of the attractions I love to this present day. And now, it is December and I am just 34 days until my next trip 2 years later.
January 7th - January 13th 2013
My beautiful girlfriend Courtney and I. We have been together for just about a year now, and I could not be any happier! When I finally told her how I felt about Disney and to know that she went when she was younger and stayed at the Wilderness Lodge I think that was the defining moment. We just talked about going, but never actually planned anything. Then somehow we ended up booking a trip and the rest is history!
All Star Sports
Both of my trips to Disney consisted of staying in vacation homes, never on property. Courtney did stay at the Wilderness Lodge years ago, but it's tough to remember when you're such a young'in when you go. We definitely wanted to stay on property for our first trip together and of course there's tons of them to pick from. After awhile of debating and researching we decided between two. Pop Century or All Star Sports. We just picked All Star Sports out of a hat basically, we just wanted a cheap resort to shower and sleep in. After all, we are in Disney World and will be making the most out of it, right?
Arrival at MCO: January 7th at 10:20 AM.
Just like everyone else, we all have a plan of some sort or timeline idea of what we will be doing throughout our vacation, here is mine. We are staying 7 Days and 6 Nights At all Star Sports Resort with 5 day base park tickets. Of course to save us the hassle with food costs we opted in for the Quick Service Dining Plan. Then, Disney released the 2013 savings, which we upgraded to the Table Service Plan which was a brilliant idea and still saved over $200 back into my pocket.
We will be arriving at MCO around 10:20 AM Monday morning and heading straight to the Magical Express line. This is my first time ever staying on property and clearly the first time using the Magical Express. The idea of bringing an actual luggage and not having to worry about anything is ingenious. My two prior trips consisted of me squishing everything into a carry on luggage and really having no room for many clothes or most importantly, souvenirs! We will be doing the Disney online check-in system to see if it really does save us some time at the resort check-in desk. Depending on whether or not our luggage beats us to our room or not is another story but that doesn't really matter, we're in Disney World!
After just about 3 and a half hours of being on a flight which may not be long, but I do have a huge appetite and will definitely be hungry. Some of you may cringe when I say this but our first stop will have to be Downtown Disney's, Planet Hollywood. I've been there twice and have loved the food ever single time crazy isn't it? With a $15 meal voucher and most likely a dinky free souvenir from our package heck why not. Courtney has never been and I'm sure she will love all of the movie memorabilia throughout the restaurant.
From then on, I think I need my usual Downtown fixing and explore all the shops and maybe a quick dessert at Ghirardelli's. One of the things I have never done, and cannot wait to do so is explore Disney via monorail. Disney has such beautiful grounds and resorts I.E. Grand Floridian, Wilderness Lodge, Animal Kingdom Lodge and many more but, I've yet to experience them. Thanks to "Santa Claus" which this year it's me, I have a brand new Canon T3i waiting for me Christmas morning. The rest of our evening will consist of resort hopping on the monorail until we finally arrive at the Grand Floridian for our reservation at the Grand Floridian Cafe. Needless to say, I've only experienced dining once at Hollywood Studios; Sci-Fi Dine in Theater. Every other meal was either brought into the park or just a quick service.
January 8th - EPCOT 9 AM - 11 PM
After what I know will be a very long first day especially after a flight, we start off with EPCOT. Courtney and I actually planned our park days by the EMH times which EPCOT is open until 11 PM this day. Will we actually stay until 11? Not really sure, but it doesn't hurt to try. It's just one of those great perks of staying on Disney property that I will experience. EPCOT is one of my favorite parks right behind Magic Kingdom. The futuristic feel, the countries around the world, the atmosphere is really something out of this world.
With many sights, tons of things to do I cannot wait to test out the new Test Track; pun intended. With so many different opinions and thoughts there's nothing like trying it out for yourself. We can all agree it was very outdated and now it seems to be pretty futuristic just what EPCOT is designed after, right? Finally after some World Showcase exploring and can't forget riding Soarin' we have a reservation at The Garden Grille a few hours before Illuminations Depending on time, one thing I would like to try to get to is the "Behind the Seeds Tour" in the Land. It's fairly cheap, and a good way to get away from the crowds after or before dinner.
QS: Sunshine Seasons
TS: The Garden Grille
January 9th - Animal Kingdom 8 AM - 5 PMAnimal Kingdom is one of those parks where guests just go for a few main attractions I.E. Expedition Everest, Kali River Rapids, Kiliminjaro Safari etc. Honestly, I'm not fortunate enough to go to Disney more than once a year, or every year for that matter so my time in Animal Kingdom is wisely spent. Just like any other park I will stay from open to close regardless. Especially with the new Canon T3i I cannot wait to photograph the landscape (I'm a full-time landscaper so EPCOT and Animal Kingdom amaze me) and all of the animals. For our taste there is really no restaurant we would like to sit down and eat so we decided to catch the earliest Ohanas reservation as possible. Which of course with such a popular table service we could only get a reservation for 8:05. Courtney and I have never been but hear many great things, from the food to atmosphere and being able to watch Wishes from the Polynesian could you really ask for anything more?
QS: Flame Tree BBQ or Pizzafari
January 10th - Magic Kingdom 8 AM - 8 PM
Simply put, the perfect setup for a Disney vacation in my opinion would be to start off with Magic Kingdom, and end my vacation there. Well at least this year I got half way there! Due to Courtney and I wanting to maximize the EMH at each park, we started off with EPCOT. Luckily we're going to Magic Kingdom twice, and ending our last night stay there. With the new Fantasy Land grand opening, I cannot wait to see the changes. Especially the beasts castle with the new Be Our Guest restaurant. After two trips to Disney World there is still so many attractions I have yet to experience. Regardless of what "age" group they are for I want to experience every attraction at least once.
Carousel of Progress, People Mover, Astro Orbitor are a few that stick out. Just like every park, in two years I've yet to conquer every attraction I'm a man on a mission!
QS: Be Our Guest
TS: Tony's Town Square
January 11th - Hollywood Studios 9 AM - 9 PM
Believe it or not, Hollywood Studios actually can easily instill fear right into me...Rockin' Roller Coaster. Something about going upside down and a corkscrew here and there makes me queasy and no, I have not been on it. It took every ounce of me to even get onto the Tower of Terror I could only imagine how I will feel in the queue. But of course, because I am such a nice guy this is Courtney's favorite ride. As she would say "I did not spend all this money and you're not going to go on it, because you are!" Well, I guess I really have no choice but that's okay I'll try anything once. On this day we planned to have a early lunch at 50's Prime Time Cafe.
My last visit I missed Fantasmic due to the arena being full, so we figured an early lunch we can easily make it in time for a perfect seat. As for dinner, that's still undecided possibly just a quick service meal just to fill us up.
TS: 50's Prime Time Cafe
QS: Backlot or Pizza Planet
January 12th - Magic Kingdom 9 AM - 10 PM
After 4 long days at the parks we have finally come to the last park day. Thankfully ending with my favorite; Magic Kingdom. It will definitely be a bittersweet feeling to end my vacation with my favorite park but of course, it is the last night. Just like any other park day, hit the usual main attractions and get them over with quick with little to no wait. Being my favorite park, there still is yet many attractions, shops and snacks I'd love to try. I've always passed right by the Confectionery and never thought to even go inside. Thanks to WDWMAGIC'S pictures of food thread, I will not be skipping it this time around. After a long morning and early afternoon we have a dinner reservation at Liberty Tree Tavern. In a nut shell Courtney's favorite type of meal, turkey, mashed potatoes, and gravy. Then ending our night with Wishes! for our last night stay of course. Something I have never stayed to watch or even knew about for that matter is the "Kiss Goodnight". Sure, it's nothing special I'm sure just some lights and music but I wasn't joking when I said I wanted to do everything. Lastly, I'll stare at the caste for 394839483984 minutes as Courtney pushes me by my arm to hop onto the monorail back to the resort...Yeah, it'll probably happen.
QS: Be Our Guest? Pecos Bills or Cosmic Rays
TS: Liberty Tree Tavern
January 13th - Na Na Na Na Hey Hey Hey...Goodbye.
Finally we've come to our last day of our vacation...I'm not even their and it makes me depressed just thinking about it! We have a late flight departure at 7:30 PM completely on purpose. After packing our bags and checking out of the resort, thankfully they will hold our luggage's as we explore a little bit more. Besides hitting Downtown Disney once more for a shopping spree.. and maybe a few resort hops there is once place I have never been and I hear its quite the sight; the Boardwalk. I'm not too sure on how to get there but I am sure its fairly easy especially with all the buses around.
And here we are...19 days away from our trip! I cannot wait, thank you for reading
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