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Old 11-19-2011, 11:41 PM   #706
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Loved the update and the Food & Wine review !!!I have to agree this was my second time for F&W, both with groups so while I looked we didnt sample as it would be sooo hard to find 1 stand that ahd something for everyone . It does make the World a very busy place !!
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:30 PM   #707
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post
I am both impressed and grateful for your intrepid and thorough TR research!

Sorry it wasn't quite as authentic as Disney would want us to believe. Still, I'm glad it at least didn't taste terrible.

I'm drooling over the pictures of the sandwiches. If I ever get to Germany, I think I need to sample this!
Well, I quite enjoyed the research!

And those Disney sausages were at least a million time more authentic than the Karamell Küche shop...

If you ever come to Germany, I will happily point you to the best place to get the sausage in a roll!

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovealldisney View Post
That picture with Katharina was a last minute thing! We were having such a good time we didn't even think to take pictures earlier!

They do have sausages at Aldi and we've tried them but they don't taste the same. I picked up Lebkuchen the other day and it's ok but not as good as the ones you sent last year! I did find a web site where you can buy German goods! Germandeli.com! I should have you look at it and tell me what is good and what is not so good to eat! I just bought Dave some Mezo mix and Fanta for Christmas! We LOVED this when there!

I think both cities each have different beauty! Thanks again my friend!
Yes, I thought that the picture was a last minute thing just before you left via U-Bahn. And in general, there is lots of beauty in Berlin, I was just kidding. But to be fair, the places that are ugly in Nuremberg are in general still prettier than Berlin's nasty corners, but then Berlin is about seven times as large as Nuremberg...

The thing with the sausages is that they are never as good when you buy them packaged than the real think fresh from the butcher's. And then the beechwood grill really adds a lot of flavour, too. It is a taste which I can't even recreate at home...

For the Lebkuchen: if they have different types then look at the ingredients, you want to get those which have the most nuts in them and the least flour. The ones I sent you were without any flour, so the tastiest version available.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:39 PM   #708
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rndmr2 View Post
I read your 2010 TR and was glad to find this one and got caught up with it today. It is good to see a different style to the trip reporting and I can't wait to hear more about your trip.

We made it a point to see the movies in the countries this year as well, it was great to see them as I hadn't seen the China and Canada ones in years.
Hi and to our TR!! I love it when new readers say hello!! And I am glad that you enjoy the different style of reporting!

I hope to get a new update up later today.

I am so glad that I finally got to do a number of things which I never took the time to try like those films and am really looking forward, to repeat visits!

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Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
In the spirit of your not quite authentic, but delicious nonetheless festival sausage...since I never got around to a TR for my brief trip to Germany, I thought I'd share this.



My lunch earlier in the day, before enjoying a lovely dinner with Magdalene!

And yes...I ate all 10 of these beauties! They were quite small actually, more like what we would consider a breakfast link size so you can see where 3 on a roll would be a lovely thing.
Wonderful! I meant to write something about how they usually would be served on pewter plates - and yes, if you get 10 or 12 they are served on a heart shaped plate. I think it its very cute.

However, next time you are here, try the Bratwursthäusle or the Goldenes Posthorn (same proprietor) as the sausages there are better than at the Bratwurströslein where you went!

Quote:
Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
There were pretzels served on the table, as a side of bread, however you are charged by the each, if you eat them. Not charged if you don't.



Yes, we ate one. Or maybe two!
Yes, that's the typical system in those traditional restaurants.

Bread on the table is generally not usual in German restaurants, you would get bread served as a side to a soup (sometimes) or a salad. Only more high-end places would serve a breadbasket with butter or similar for the whole table. But it definitely has become more common over the last 20 years.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:42 PM   #709
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Originally Posted by marvali View Post
Hope you two are having a great time together!

With the lack of updates you are either very busy together, OR it means my pictures still haven't arrived.......
We had a wonderful time together!!

But unfortunately still no CD in may mail...
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Old 11-20-2011, 02:41 PM   #710
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Magdalene, I loved this chapter! I'm glad you're giving us the scoop on how authentic (or not) the food is in the World Showcase.

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We did try something in Germany in order to find out how authentic the dishes are and picked something which we (especially I) are very familiar with. It was advertised as “Nüernberger Sausage in pretzel roll”.

Well, already the sign lacked some authenticity already... While I very much approved the use of the German letter “Ü” here, they unfortunately added one “E” to many. It should read “Nürnberger” - or if you have a keyboard which does not have the “Ü” you could substitute the “Ü” with “UE”, so “Nuernberger” would also be correct. I told Marv all about this when we got our sausages there together and quite a few people around us seemed to be rather amused by my “lecture”.
I know I'd be the same way as you if I went to a foreign country and saw something like that!

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Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
This is what we got:



And this is what the real thing looks like:



A better view with the bread roll open:

The real one looks incredible! The Epcot version looks...well, odd. I'm sure people eat that and wonder "what are the Germans thinking, having the sausage stick way out from each end of the roll?"

But I am salivating over the pictures of the real one!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
Yes, I specifically went into the city to obtain these pictures for the purpose of this TR!
But I have a feeling if I lived there it wouldn't take much arm twisting to get me to go get one of those sandwiches.

I'm glad Epcot got the mustard exactly right! That's important too!


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Exac ly.
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:47 PM   #711
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Originally Posted by glennbo123 View Post
Magdalene, I loved this chapter! I'm glad you're giving us the scoop on how authentic (or not) the food is in the World Showcase.
I was hoping that my TR regulars would enjoy that update!! Good to know that I succeeded to entertain.

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Originally Posted by glennbo123 View Post
I know I'd be the same way as you if I went to a foreign country and saw something like that!
Well, it was just so odd... And I often cringe at the incorrect use of English here in Germany as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by glennbo123 View Post
The real one looks incredible! The Epcot version looks...well, odd. I'm sure people eat that and wonder "what are the Germans thinking, having the sausage stick way out from each end of the roll?"

But I am salivating over the pictures of the real one!
The real ones are as delicious as they look! But I need to tell you that only Nuremberg is smart enough to make the sausages so short that they fit with the length of the bread roll. The "sausage sticking out at both sides"-design is in fact the much more common one!! Don't ask me what the Germans were thinking, maybe that you get to eat the ends without any bread being involved? As a kid I would always eat the ends sticking out first and then the bread with the sausage inside. Perhaps we need to send Katharina out to buy some Bratwurst as sold in Berlin - even though the typical sausage is something called "Currywurst" - curry sausage. Maybe you can convince her to do a bonus update about that. I think her DH could be convinced to take her out to a place called "Curry 36" for dinner one day...

Quote:
Originally Posted by glennbo123 View Post
But I have a feeling if I lived there it wouldn't take much arm twisting to get me to go get one of those sandwiches.

if you don't tell it anyone: I was really looking forward to that assignment I had set for myself.
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:58 PM   #712
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Thoughts on the Magic Kingdom:

Thoughts on the Magic Kingdom:

This park managed to come in third place even though I sometimes was tempted in the past to claim that it is my least favourite park at WDW. Not that I don't like that style of park, after all it is the original model of a Disney park with Disneyland as the original. But comparing it to the masterpiece of Disneyland Paris and the charm of the original Disneyland, the MK just isn't a huge priority for me when at WDW.

But when Katharina and I started talking about what we wanted to make sure that we won't miss in each park – I think sometime on board of that plane somewhere over the Atlantic – we realised that the list of attractions we wanted to do at the MK was much longer than at any other park. And we did have quite a few “firsts” to cover there as well.

Let's look at the list of new things to do:
  1. Splash Mountain - new for Katharina - this was under refurb during our last trip and she has only ever experienced the one at DL in 1992, where both of us were frightened to death by the big drop!
  2. Tom Sawyer Island - new for both of us - maybe we will even find a paint brush?
  3. Tiki Room - new for everyone - since this is under refurbishment at the moment and will open with a new show (rumoured to be more or less the original from 1971) on August 15, this will be new for both of us.
  4. walk through Cinderella's Castle - new for Katharina, somehow we did not manage to walk through the castle once on our last trip

You ought to be impressed: We managed to do all these things!!

Let's start with Splash Mountain: I promised Katharina that we won't get seriously wet and it was a warm day. So, she trustingly gets into the log, is (hopefully) very impressed with the lap bar and off we go. The we go around the bend where we see the logs falling down and what happens? There suddenly is this huge spray of water coming our way, hitting all of Katharina's right hand side, while I am quite protected because someone is sitting next to me... Katharina wasn't pleased... But I think the rest of the ride did cheer her up a little bit because she agreed to try it for a second time (of course insisting that I would take the “dangerous” right hand seat and with the added protection of a rain-poncho)!

I love Splash Mountain and was really glad that we got to experience it on this trip, but I noticed that it has some serious maintenance issues. While there weren't any headless chickens (I had read reports online about those...), the water effects weren't working and some of the animatronics weren't moving their mouths as they should. I always wonder whether it really makes such a huge difference whether everything is working, but when I told Katharina about the missing water effects, she said that this made sense that they should be there because it was boring in that scene. So I guess one can notice things not working even without knowing what the real thing should look like...

Tom Sawyer Island was the surprise hit for me at the MK. I truly enjoyed exploring that place!! We got over there just after it opened at 10am and Katharina tried her best to find a white paint brush. The CMs hide several white paint brushes (like the one Tom Sawyer used to paint Aunt Polly's fence) on the island and if you find it, you will be rewarded with fastpasses. When we got to the island we saw one family waiting for the raft who already had found a brush... We weren't so lucky! But I think we checked out every corner of the island. It has a wonderful atmosphere, it feels like a place in the real wilderness. We sat on the deck looking over to Liberty Square in some rocking chairs and watched the Liberty Bell getting ready for the day. So relaxing! The caves were great fun since they are really dark and very narrow. They had a true feeling of adventure to them! And we even saw some spectacular wildlife:



A caterpillar the size of one of my fingers. Later in the week we saw a huge butterfly at the Animal Kingdom and wondered whether this might have been a brother of our caterpillar...

You can also get some interesting views of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad from the island:



The Tiki Room was something which we finally managed on our very last visit to the MK. Well, I am glad that it is no longer under New Management, because after having seen this once, I had no desire to ever return. The new old Tiki Room is at least charming in an old-fashioned way. So while not a real priority, I might actually see it again at some point.

And we did walk through the castle one evening! So that completes the new things, at least those that were on our list.

We did two other “new things”:

The first is that we rode Space Mountain for the first time with “Starry-O-Phonic Sound” - that's the new off-board sound effects that you can hear around your rocket. I had read about it, but forgotten it again and therefore was quite surprised during our first ride during that trip. It was quite a fun addition!

And then we did something which at least for Katharina was most likely a first and last ride on this attraction – not because she hated it so much, but because it will close sometime next year: Snow White's Scary Adventure. I think none of us was too scared but neither were we too impressed. There is a version of this in Paris as well and we tend to avoid those dark rides there as well. I think I will like the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train they are planning for the new Fantasyland much more. But I would prefer it if they used the space of the current ride for a new ride instead of for the Princess Meet & Greet they are planning to put in there.

Other thoughts and observations:

We spent two evenings at the MK, which isn't easy to do during October because there are so many party nights. One evening was during MNSSHP, which will be a separate update, and then we also spent a very late Saturday evening at the MK, when it was open until 12am! The MK was really crowded that evening, but we managed to see Wishes from my favourite spot: the end of Main Street. However, getting away from there was rather a hassle. I was shocked to see that they even had a sign that you could also exit the park by going backstage behind Main Street from the side where the Ice Cream Parlour is. I guess Paris is really lucky to have those arcades!

One thing that I would have loved to do more, would have been taking in more of the entertainment. We saw a band coming on stage in Liberty Square:



Things like that really add to the atmosphere of the MK and I would have loved to experience more of this. But we did slow down in other regards: Our time on Tom Sawyer Island, having one of those gigantic and extremely delicious cinnamon rolls from the Main Street Bakery sitting down by the water on the hub.

And one attraction sadly has become a bit of a disappointment: Philharmagic. I used to think that this was such a cute film. However, I guess having seen so many movies in the cineman in 3D in the recent year, I got really spoiled. The film does look so dated and the 3D pales in comparison to the quality you see in the cinema. It actually was the only one of the 3D films in the parks that we saw and I think this type of attraction might have reached its end as a viable theme park attraction. Especially if you think that there is 3D TV becoming available now...

Overall, however, we really enjoyed our time at the MK during this trip, but the construction walls in Fantasyland did kill what little atmosphere there used to be in Fantasyland. But I really hope that the new part will make it a much prettier place once it is finished.

So why does the MK only get third place behind the other two parks? I think because it has less repeatability. The attractions that are there are mostly shorter and not so immersive. At AK the Safari and the trails are something that you can look at again and again because they will never be the same. At Epcot it is similar with attractions like Spaceship Earth. Also I find both more interesting environments to explore, all the detail in the WS – of which we actually missed a lot this trip. And that is exactly what I enjoyed so much about Tom Sawyer's Island.
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Old 11-20-2011, 06:17 PM   #713
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I did some Google searching and I think your caterpillar is a Citheronia regalis. Type it into the Google Image search.

I had trouble with the 3D in Philharmagic last time, like figuring out exactly how to focus. I wasn't sure if it was from trying to put the 3D glasses over my glasses, or what exactly.

MK isn't our favorite park either, but I do have a number of things I want to see next time and the new (old) Tiki Room is one of them.
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:16 PM   #714
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I agree with your thoughts on MK. As an adult, MK is very tame attraction wise. While the attractions are not as exciting the park more than makes up for it with atmosphere.

Happy to hear you were able to cross all those things off your list.

The New fantasyland will having you going back to experience all the new stuff.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:37 PM   #715
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what a lovely update! I'm so glad you enjoyed TSI, it has always been a highlight for me, a surprising true escape which can be especially lovely if the park is crowded. There are definitely some parts to MK that could use an update more than others, I couldn't agree more about Philarmagic.
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:51 AM   #716
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
You ought to be impressed: We managed to do all these things!!
Nice work!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
Let's start with Splash Mountain: I promised Katharina that we won't get seriously wet and it was a warm day.
Let's file this under "Famous Last Words".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
Tom Sawyer Island was the surprise hit for me at the MK. I truly enjoyed exploring that place!!


So glad you liked it! I really love that island. It still feels like a secret hideaway in the middle of the park.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post

You can also get some interesting views of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad from the island:

Great shot! We got the exact same picture:



Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
I think I will like the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train they are planning for the new Fantasyland much more.
Can't wait to see what that ride is like.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
I guess Paris is really lucky to have those arcades!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
But we did slow down in other regards: Our time on Tom Sawyer Island, having one of those gigantic and extremely delicious cinnamon rolls from the Main Street Bakery sitting down by the water on the hub.
These are a few of my favorite things...

Last edited by Captain_Oblivious; 11-23-2011 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 11-26-2011, 01:02 PM   #717
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glennbo123 View Post
I did some Google searching and I think your caterpillar is a Citheronia regalis. Type it into the Google Image search.

I had trouble with the 3D in Philharmagic last time, like figuring out exactly how to focus. I wasn't sure if it was from trying to put the 3D glasses over my glasses, or what exactly.

MK isn't our favorite park either, but I do have a number of things I want to see next time and the new (old) Tiki Room is one of them.
Thanks for the research! I love it that the caterpillar is named "hickory horned devil" - a very fitting name. Supposedly it is harmless, just tries to look very dangerous!

I don't think it is your glasses which are the issue, but truly the Philharmagic film.

The Tiki Room is really quite quaint, but don't expect too much of it! I think the MK will be much nicer again in 2014 when there aren't any huge building projects ongoing anymore. I think it is great what they are doing in Fantasyland and I would love to see more new attractions being planned. But at the moment the current still operating Fantasyland isn't that pretty... When you go this summer, you should at least be able to ride Dumbo at its new location, as well as the Barnstormer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poolrat View Post
I agree with your thoughts on MK. As an adult, MK is very tame attraction wise. While the attractions are not as exciting the park more than makes up for it with atmosphere.

Happy to hear you were able to cross all those things off your list.

The New fantasyland will having you going back to experience all the new stuff.
Yes, the new Fantasyland will be a huge draw for me to spend time there. It looks already very promising and I have been quite excited about it from the beginning. And I am glad that they got rid of those many princess greetings and put in a coaster instead!

Quote:
Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
what a lovely update! I'm so glad you enjoyed TSI, it has always been a highlight for me, a surprising true escape which can be especially lovely if the park is crowded. There are definitely some parts to MK that could use an update more than others, I couldn't agree more about Philarmagic.
Thanks Cynthia! I think I will try to escape to TSI much more regularly now, it is a nice place!

It's a shame about Philharmagic, this is one of the newest additions to the MK. I know that some "serious fans" discuss that film based attractions aren't as high quality as those which are with animatronics and real sets. I always thought that this line of thought was a bit presumptuous, but after this trip I can at least see the point in that line of thought. I still don't agree with it about every attraction, there is still the question of how it is executed. Forbidden Journey and Spiderman both use film, but I think they are fantastic. And Philharmagic to me is still more enjoyable than Snow White...
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Old 11-26-2011, 01:10 PM   #718
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Nice work!
Yes, we were very proud how successful we were at the MK!

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Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post
Let's file this under "Famous Last Words".
No, she did forgive me - even though this wasn't the first time I had been the cause for her getting wetter than expected. When we were in the US in 1992 we went to an animal park which had an orca show. There was a sign that the first five rows will get wet. Well, my English was good then, but not as good as it is now. And I told Katharina that "wet" would mean "moist" not "soaking wet" (two different words for this and depending on how you use wet it can really be translated with the one word or the other)... Well, we ended up being soaked from head to toe!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post


So glad you liked it! I really love that island. It still feels like a secret hideaway in the middle of the park.
Exactly! I think it will become a regular place to visit for me... Maybe bring a drink and a snack and just sit on one of those chairs. It's a shame that they closed the food selling place there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post
Great shot! We got the exact same picture:

Yours is pretty good, too! It is a great view!

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Can't wait to see what that ride is like.
I have heard rather conflicting things. Some say it is going to be nothing better than the Barnstormer and others say it is going to be more like a mild BTMRR. I guess the truth is somewhere in between.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Oblivious View Post
These are a few of my favorite things...
Yes, slowing down is really great! I hope to become better at that in the future since I really enjoy it!
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Old 11-26-2011, 01:19 PM   #719
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Thoughts on Disney Hollywood Studios

Thoughts on Disney Hollywood Studios



This is the park formerly known as the Disney MGM Studios. Even I got to know it under that name and I have already nearly forgotten it... But while the name has changed, I am unfortunately finally at the point where I think that this park does need some change. Somehow I did not find very much to do there this time. It still has some of my favourite attractions, but as I said in the previous update about the MK, it also lacks the immersive environment. At lot of it is just facade. Very pretty facade, I love the look of the old Hollywood, but lets be honest, behind those beautiful fronts there just are shops selling the same things as Mousegears at Epcot or the Emporium in the MK.

I am really rather sad that I came to the conclusion that this is finally my least favourite park at WDW. In 2004 this was my overall favourite park of them all. The only park where I refused to leave the park for a midday break during our 5 day trip because I just wanted to soak up the atmosphere. I spent an afternoon watching streemosphere and was just happy. Maybe I have now already soaked up everything there is? I was also a bit disappointed at the streetmosphere this time. All the shows we encountered were not just the Citizens of Hollywood doing their thing – and interacting with the people now and then, no they put on contests where guests could get really involved and win FPs and so. I loved it before when the Citizens were very oblivious to the fact that this was a theme park and not the real Hollywood. Now it seems like they are so obviously just a show. But I still got a fun picture:



However, even a fourth place at WDW makes it a pretty great park overall!!

We had quite a few new things planned for DHS as well:
  1. Star Tours II - new for both of us - since this opened this May, of course it will be new for us! I am very much looking forward to an update on one of my oldtime favourites
  2. Animation Academy - both of us - I hope we will find the time to try drawing a character
  3. Voyage of the Little Mermaid - both of us - not sure we will really make it there since we aren't that big on shows, so other things will be more important...
  4. Walt Disney's One Man Dream - kind of new for both of us - as far as I know they have changed the exhibition quite a bit since our last visit, so it will be interesting to see how much is new...

Of course we did get to ride on Star Tours II!! I was very impressed with this update. The queue looks wonderful again and there are a few fun things to watch while you wait! The new films have crystal clear quality and the 3D here is up to modern standards, not at all the disappointment I had at Philharmagic. The trick of this attraction is that you get a random flight combined out of several different elements. This is exciting because you get to experience something different everytime – well, unless you ride with us! Of the four trips Katharina and I went on together with Star Tours, we ended up visiting the same planet three times!!! So while all this randomness makes you really excited beforehand, it also does make for quite some disappointment if it does not work for you. I guess the next time we are there we will never visited that planet ever again because statistically we have used up way to many visits there already. ;-) But I think overall we really loved the new ride! It was so great to see this attraction restored to its former glory, it was one of the attractions which on our very first DL visit in 1992 impressed us so much!

We did try to get into the Animation Academy, but were told that it would be a 45 minute wait since the next group was already full... Maybe bad timing? I am not sure, but at least we did not want to wait for that long, so we gave up.

And I am very ashamed to report that we actually did not make any effort to get on Voyage of the Little Mermaid...

We visited One Man's Dream - I wasn't really sure what was new and what wasn't, but we did spend quite a bit time in there with Marv and Jonathan - I think Marv and I are better fans since it took us longer to get through the exhibition...

We did enjoy some of the old favourites like Tower of Terror:



and Rock 'n Roller Coaster and we did get one ride on TSMM. But otherwise we found that we did not feel very much like repeating any of the other attractions...

But one thing which we definitely enjoyed: The ability to walk there. We timed it and it took us about 10 minutes from our room door to the bag check. However, we never walked in the bright sunshine, only during the slightly cooler mornings (still it was usually already quite warm then) and then when it was rather clouded. At 2 pm on a hot and sunny day you might want to wait for a boat... We did take the boat back to the Boardwalk once, but got off at the Swan. The boat captain even advised doing that since it takes quite some time for the boat to go from the Swan to the Boardwalk since it is stopping at the Beach Club in between.
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:55 AM   #720
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Sending warm wishes to you and your family for this Christmas Season. Please say it isn't so that your thread seems to be coming to an end. What is next on the horizon of adventures for the wonderful Magdalene and Katharina we have grown to love? Lovely pictures of Christmas trees and celebrations I hope
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