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Old 05-15-2009, 12:15 AM   #1
jasperess
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Alligators Love Hot Dogs - May 2009 Trip Report

Hello everyone! Please bear with me as this is my first trip report - I'll try to do the best I can

First to introduce us:


Liam is a 25 year old computer programmer who thought Disney was going to be just for kids. Boy, was he wrong! He ended up quite liking Disney World, although he couldn't totally understand the nostalgia of the Magic Kingdom after not having been there as a child. I (Shelby) am a 24 year old chemistry graduate student who was really obsessed with making this an awesome vacation. It turned out quite well, if I might say so, and as you will see, I hope.

Ever since I have been with Liam, my boyfriend of 7 years, I knew that I wanted to take him to Disney World. He had never been as a child and I, having been a few times and having loved it, thought that I could make it a really enjoyable experience for both of us. It would definitely be different from a family-style vacation, but would make for an interesting first couples vacation. So, when he moved out to San Diego, where I go to graduate school, we decided to finally go on the trip I've been wanting to take for seven years. We were planning to hit up every Disney park (including Animal Kingdom which I had never been to since I haven't been to Florida in almost 10 years) and both Universal parks in a 7 day vacation with only one break day! Did we succeed? Guess you'll just have to wait and see!

So, if you're tuning in, thank you for coming along with the ride and I hope you enjoy the show. I'll try to update this trip report regularly, I promise!

Next installment:
Arrival and Day One - Animal Kingdom!
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Old 05-15-2009, 03:57 PM   #2
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Can't wait to hear about it!!

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Old 05-18-2009, 01:21 PM   #3
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Signing on.
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2014 trip report: Disney dangled the visual weinee and Mickeystoontown gobbled it up! Our two week adventure!
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....6#post51642226


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Old 05-18-2009, 06:21 PM   #4
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Arrival in Orlando

So Liam and I woke up bright and early at the lovely hour of 4am Pacific to get to the airport in time for our 6:30am flight on Delta. When we got to the airport, we were surprised at how long the security line was, but luckily we made it to our flight in time. Our flight to Atlanta proceeded as planned, although unfortunately the TVs were not working so we could not watch the movie After a quick stopover, we hopped onto our puddle jumper and made it to Orlando! I was quite excited how the airport didn't look like an airport in some parts, so I had to take a picture!



We were quite excited and all we had to do was get our Budget rental car and we would be on our way! Unfortunately, when we finally walked all the way to the rental car desk, we found a HUGE line. Very unfortunate. So Liam and I played my handheld Trivial Pursuit game (and I won!) and the hour or so passed by smoothly.

After finally getting our car, we drove from the airport to our hotel, the Radisson Resort Orlando-Celebration. By this time it was around 8pm or so at night, but here is what our hotel looks like in the daytime: the sign, one of the main buildings, and our building.







Immediately when we got in the room, Liam had to turn on the TV and see what we got, but I reminded him that we needed to go to Target and get food and supplies for the week as well as dinner that night. So we did, and then he was able to enjoy himself.



So, after a quick dinner and a bit of relaxing, we were off to bed as we had our first real day tomorrow: Animal Kingdom!
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Old 05-19-2009, 12:27 AM   #5
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Day 1 - Animal Kingdom

So, on Sunday morning we woke up and got ready for our first Disney park - Animal Kingdom! I had never been to this park before and this was to be Liam's first adventure into the world of Disney. We got a little turned around, but were still able to get there about 20 minutes or so prior to rope drop.



I noticed that they weren't using the finger scans, nor did they use them our entire trip. I've heard this might be due to swine flu? Nonetheless, Universal used them. We were very careful to use a lot of hand sanitizer and wash our hands and it turned out we didn't get sick nor see anyone sick. YAY!

Once we got into the park, we followed the TouringPlans guide and got a Fastpass for Everest. When we rode it in the early afternoon, I found it to be a lot of fun and a very smooth coaster. The Yeti was in what I learned from this forum as B mode, but it happened so suddenly that I wasn't disappointed at all. I really liked spiraling backward in the dark.



First thing in the morning however, we did Dinoland U.S.A. I was quite apprehensive about going on Dinosaur, as I heard a lot of people were frightened of it, and for good reason! I literally had tears streaming down my face by the end of it! I was cowering in fear in Liam's arm for the majority of it. There was even one point where Liam put his hand on mine and I screamed in shock because I was so freaked out! In the rednecked ride picture, you can see me and the other girl in the front row cowering in fear. The men, and even the kids, are apparently made of sterner stuff!





Not scared of this dino though, booyah!


I thought about going on Dinosaur again, just to prove that I could do it with my eyes open (I really could, right???), but we ended up not doing that and just finishing the park. As we were walking to Kali River Rapids, we noticed these monkeys up in towers. They loved moving from tower to tower and peeing down from there into the river. Priceless.



I also really liked the walking trails where you could see all the animals. The bats let it all hang out and we got really close to some tigers on the other side of the glass.





However, one of my favorite things about the Animal Kingdom turned out to be the Flights of Wonder show. Yes, the plotline was a bit overplayed, but I loved learning about the bird's natural adaptations and when the birds flew over your head, it was scary but amazing all at the same time.





Animal Kingdom was definitely a lot of fun. Even at lunch, they had an African dance going on. One of the dancers kept trying to get the woman at the table next to us to get up and go dance but she would have none of it - I felt bad for the dancers. They were trying so hard and it was really hot and humid this week for May, being above 90 all week.



We also really enjoyed the Safari as well as the Festival of the Lion King. We got tons of pictures of animals, but here are just a couple. The rhino one was taken with no zoom he was that close! Unfortunately, we didn't choose to stay for Finding Nemo: the Musical, but there's always next time, right?





Instead, we chose to leave around 3 in the afternoon and go back to the hotel to rest up a bit. For dinner, we tried the Orlando Ale House at the suggestions of the Disboards. It was good and nicely priced, but unfortunately not as good as we were hoping. Maybe we ordered the wrong thing? Nonetheless, it was a long exhausting day, and we knew it'd be even more demanding tomorrow when we went to... Epcot!
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Old 05-19-2009, 05:47 AM   #6
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An hour at the rental car company??? Yikes!!

Sounds like a good day at AK though!
Good report!
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Old 05-19-2009, 09:24 AM   #7
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Is it just me or are the latest pictures not showing up? I wanna see!
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2014 trip report: Disney dangled the visual weinee and Mickeystoontown gobbled it up! Our two week adventure!
http://www.disboards.com/showthread....6#post51642226


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Old 05-19-2009, 06:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heluvsme View Post
An hour at the rental car company??? Yikes!!

Sounds like a good day at AK though!
Good report!
Yeah, I was really disappointed having to wait that long! But I seemed to recall waiting a long time for a rental car as a child too... not sure why though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mickeystoontown View Post
Is it just me or are the latest pictures not showing up? I wanna see!
They appear to be showing up, but sometimes they don't and I get red X's, maybe cause Kodak is getting too much traffic or something? When this happens, refreshing sometimes works, or putting the TR link in a new window, or, as a last resort, I found copying the link URL and pasting into a new window works.

Not sure why it does this though... I'm sorry
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