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Old 03-29-2012, 05:34 PM   #1
kristie73
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Smile Our first trip to WDW, March 2012. We did all 4 parks in 5 days, 2 days of travel

So we are back from our first trip to WDW. I will write a quick trip report. Thanks to those that helped with advice and from others that shared their experiences to help us plan.

We flew into Orlando and used the Magical Express Bus. We stayed at Port Orleans Riverside Resort. Just a little about our experience at POR. Magical Express bus wait was short from the airport. It was cool having our luggage and groceries brought to our room. We booked a garden view room and requested the Magnolia Terrace. We got the Magnolia Terrace building! But I was a little disappointed in the location. It was the 3rd floor, back of building...parking lot side and a view of a tree blocking the parking lot. Not really what I would call garden view, but it was fine.

The room was nice. The ice machine on the 3rd floor never worked. Other than those, no complaints. The walk to the pool and main lobby was a short walk across the bridge. We only ate breakfast twice there. It was a mad house but fine. We bought two of the disney mugs and filled them up as often as we could. We didn't have a dining plan and maybe next time that is something we will need to learn about. Expecially if we can get a free dining plan. We only took the boat the first evening to Downtown Disney. It's a nice ride. But our last night we took the bus to Downtown Disney. We usually left and got off out the East depot because it was closest to our building. The buses sometimes got crowded or was a little wait, but I don't think it was anything unusual or worth complaining. We went to the pool every afternoon at least for a few hours. My boys loved it and loved the slide. Sometimes it was hard finding an ideal place to lay down but someone was always leaving and you could grab their chairs. There was a lot we didn't do like the movie night or campfire. We would definitely come back to Port Orleans Riverside. I was a little confused with the Magical Express checkout and luggage procedure. They checked us in and 4 of our bags. But I didn't know that. So I logged onto the airline website and checked in and paid for 2 checked bags. But it was $35 each. I thought that was weird. But it charged us that because they thought we already checked in four bags. Whatever, I called Delta and they are going to refund us some money as we only had 2 bags checked. Thanks for sharing your experiences with POR to help make our trip great! I'm sad we are back home, but thankful that my feet get a rest.

Oh one other thing. My son had a stuffed Mickey Mouse that he brought from home. It has movable arms and legs. He left it on a bench at the East Depot bus stop. Boo! Someone took it and didn't turn it in. So that makes me sad.

The first day we didn't do a park. We went to downtown Disney and had dinner at the T-Rex Cafe. My boys enjoyed it. I wish we would have sat in the back room with more dinosaurs.
Hubby got the half rack of ribs with mashed potatoes
.
I got the Paleonzoic Chicken Sandwich with fries.

We both thought it was good. Expensive but fine. My kids got the mac n cheese and pizza. Those were fine. We used those 99 cent coupons from the Rain Forest Cafe. That helped with the cost.
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DH , ME , DS9 , DS5
Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
Disneyland - Stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn, November 2006
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:04 PM   #2
kristie73
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Magic Kingdom

Our second day we went to Magic Kingdom during Early Morning Hours. Got there at rope drop. We were able to ride Dumbo and Goofini first thing, then teacups, Peter Pan, It's a small world, the cars, snow white, etc. We got a lot done in the morning. We ate lunch at the Columbia Harbour House Liberty Square. I had the shrimp basket and hubby had the fish and chips. Kids split chicken nuggets. All was good here. Then we did Haunted Mansion. We tried to ride the train and it was down. We did Buzz Lightyear ride and character, and Monsters Inc. Then left for the pool at the resort. We came back for dinner at Tony's. This meal was not bad, but the experience was not good. The waiter was blah and it was freezing in there. We ordered the crab dip appetizer. This was good. The bread was a little hard.

Hubby and I split the Shrimp Scampi. It was yummy and fine to split for us.

My kids split the spaghetti and meatballs. It tasted fine.
I think it was just the waiter spilled a drink on my hubby, it took a long time to get our dinner, it was freezing from the A/C in the restaurant, I didn't like our seat, and the waiter never mentioned anything about my hubby's birthday (even though I mentioned it on the reservation and the hostess asked about it). I didn't feel like saying anything. So it just didn't add anything to our experience. The food was fine.

We saw Mickey and Minnie afterwards. Then we found a spot for the parade. I got some popcorn and came back to our spot to find some really rude people shoving their way and squeezing in our spot. It made the parade awful. We tried to ride the train again and it was down again. Overall the majority of the day at Magic Kingdom was fine. There were some hiccups that interupted our magic. We left after fireworks.
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Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
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Old 03-30-2012, 11:43 AM   #3
kristie73
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Epcot

Our 3rd day, we went to Epcot. We got there at rope drop. My hubby ran over and got fast pass tickets for Soarin while I went with the kids to the
character spot. We were there first thing to get those pictures taken with Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Donald, and Goofy. That was cool. Then we went over to Test Track. The kids and hubby and I really liked this ride! We got fast passes for it later. My oldest and I did Mission Space the light version. That was fun and quick. We rode Soarin and Living with the Land. I think Soarin was fun, but it seems like a lot of hype for it. Glad we did it with fast passes. We tried to ride Test Track again, but it went down. Gave everyone fast passes to come back any time that day. We started getting hunrgy so we walked up through the countries. We stopped in China for egg rolls, then to Germany for a brat and beer and a pretzel. Hubby and I split a canoli in Italy. We started to do the Kim Possible stuff, but my boys were not that interested. Maybe if it was Agent P from Phineas and Ferb. ??? There were a lot of bugs around Japan or Morraco I think. We just walked on. Everyone was getting hot and tired, I looked at a few garden souvenirs. Then we did Nemo and Friends and Turtle Talk with crush (the boys loved this), looked around at the sea creatures. Then we left for the hotel. Swam a little and came back to the park for dinner at San Angel Inn. My husband grabbed fast passes for Maelstrom and then met us at the table. We were seated in a back table and not in view of the river and volcano so that was disappointing but my youngest son was asleep in the stroller so they wanted to accomodate a place for him at the table.
I ordered one of the fruity margaritas and it was really good. The chips and salsa was good too.

For dinner I got the carne asada and cheese enchiladas plate. It was so good. I asked for a side of tortillas. She brought at no extra charge.

Hubby had the Mahi-Mahi a la Veracruzana. He liked it but I think he was jealous of my steak.

My son got the cheese quesadilla with fruit. He didn't eat the green beans or rice.

Our waitress was excellent. She brought out an extra fruit cup in case my younger son woke up - he never did until we left, but we took some fruit and quesadilla with us for him to eat. The waitress recognized my hubby's birthday and brought out a churro and ice cream. That was great!
We rode the Three Caballeros ride and my boys really liked it! We rode Maelstrom with our fast passes (cool ride and nice to take advantage of the fast pass) and then we rode Test Track again with our fast pass. That ride is so fun! Then we found a spot for the Illumininations. It was not a great spot though. But we were sitting and could see the fireworks. After, we did Spaceship Earth and then left. I wish we would have done a few others like Figment and Ellen's ride, etc. But oh well. We just walked so much. We were all tired.

We liked Epcot, but next time I think we should plan 2 days there. It's a lot of walking and we didn't get to see a lot. We felt a little hot and tired.

Test Track was definitely the highlight ride here.
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DH , ME , DS9 , DS5
Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
Disneyland - Stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn, November 2006
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Old 03-30-2012, 12:10 PM   #4
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Hollywood Studios

Our 4th day was for Hollywood Studios. We felt a little more refreshed this day. It was an Early Morning Hour day so we got there right a 8am. We went straight to the Jedi Training sign up. My husband really wanted the 12:30 slot because he had planned out the day perfect around that. So we got up to ask, she was hesitant to allow us that time, but she did. GREAT! We finished the sign up and rode Star Tours. Excellent ride. Then we quickly went to Toy Story Mania. We rode it and grabbed fast passes. We did the Little Mermaid show, met Handy Manny and Jake from the Neverland Pirates. We watched the Disney Junior Show. We did the Disney Animation thing. My older son really liked this. He loves drawing. So nice keepsake and memory there. We rode Toy Story Mania again with our Fast Passes. Fun ride. We didn't do Tower of Terror. My kids were scared and we just didn't want to push it. Oh well. Something for next time. Then got hungry for lunch so headed to Pizza Planet. It was fine. My kids split a pepperoni pizza and hubby and I split the veggie pizza meal and caesar salad. It was good enough. We didn't play any games in there. It was time for the Jedi Training. My older son was really nervous and hestiate, but they did the Jedi Training and got to be up on the stage to fight Darth Vadar. Great experience and memory for them and us. We watched the Indiana Jones show, the Muppets show, met Phineas and Ferb, McQueen and Mater and rode Star Tours again. Somehow we got a similar ride experience on Star Tours. Wish it was a little more different than our first ride. Then we did Lights Motor Action show. That was really cool. It rained a little while waiting to enter this show. No big deal though. The kids played in the Honey I shrunk the kids playground and then we had dinner at the Sci-Fi Diner. Cool place.

I forgot to take pictures of the hamburgers though. We split the Onion Rings too. Yum! We could have split a hamburger though. They were huge. The milk shake alcohol drinks were good, but way overpriced and filled with too much whipped cream.

The kids split their hamburger and fries. The waiter was great! He also recognized my hubby's birthday and brought out a sundae.

We left after dinner. Kids were tired. Wish we could have done Beauty and the Beast, Tower of Terror, and Fantasmic. Next time I guess.

We went back to the hotel for evening swimming. Fun day that followed our schedule pretty well.
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DH , ME , DS9 , DS5
Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
Disneyland - Stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn, November 2006
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Old 03-30-2012, 12:49 PM   #5
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Magic Kingdom again

Our 5th day was back at Magic Kingdom. We had breakfast reservations at the Crystal Palace at 9:20. Obviously expensive and overpriced, but it was a nice meal. We all loaded up. We saw Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet, and Pooh. So very cool. They also recognized my son's birthday (we celebrated his too). We got a birthday cupcake and brought one for my older son too. Great experience there for breakfast. We rode the Magic Carpets first and hubby grabbed fast passes for the Jungle Cruise. Then we had breakfast. After we went on the Jungle Cruise. That was fine. It's nice when it's fast pass. Then we waited for Pirates of the Carribean. Then the ride closed. It never reopened so we totally missed Pirates! Hubby went to get Splash Mountain fast passes. We watched the Pirate show, younger son went up on stage and got a souvenir scroll. We met Pirate Goofy too. Then we rode Splash Mountain. That was hit! We grabbed fast passes for Splash Mountain. We did Tom Sawyer's Island and Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse. We watched the Country Bear Jamborree. We rode Splash Mountain again with Fast Passes. Then we decided to leave the park. Oh I tried a dole whip float. Pineapple yumminess. We swam at the pool and got ready for dinner. We took the bus back to Magic Kingdom and then took the monorail to Polynesian for our reservations at Kona Cafe. It was a very crowded monorail at dinner I guess. There's a lot of hype for this restaurant. I thought it was good, but not great!
We split Pot Stickers. These were good.

I ordered the Coconut Almond Chicken. This was okay.

Hubby had the Kona Coffee-rubbed Pork Chop. He said it was okay. He expected more coffee flavor.

We got the Kilauea Torte for dessert and the kids split a hotdog and the sundae. They are light eaters so it was fine.
We went back to Magic Kingdom. Pirates was still shut down, so we rode the train to Fantasyland. Finally the train wasn't broke. Too long of lines in Fantasyland so we went to Tommorowland. We grabbed fast passes for Stitch's Great Escape. We rode the PeopleMover (this is pretty cool ). We did the Carousel of Progress. I guess you gotta do it once. Then we did Stitch. I think that is kinda dumb. The kids danced in the dance party. That was funny. Then we left the park.

We missed some stuff, but I think we did a lot. It was a great first experience and now we know better how to plan for the next trip.
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DH , ME , DS9 , DS5
Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
Disneyland - Stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn, November 2006
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Old 03-30-2012, 01:50 PM   #6
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Animal Kingdom

Our 6th day we went to Animal Kingdom. We got there right when it opened and went straight to the Safari ride. This was disappointing. Not as many animals to see and the guy kept driving off before I could snap a picture. We did the Wildlife Safari in Oregon last year and I guess it spoiled us. So much better, http://www.wildlifesafari.net/ Even the Wild Animal Park ride in San Diego is better. Anyway after that we somehow missed the Africa Trail so we did the Junkle Trek (Asia). That was cool with all the birds. Then we rode Kali Rapids. I was so thankful for the tips to wear a rain poncho. We would have been soaked and I thought the ride was too short for how wet you get! Then we did the Flight of Wonder bird show. This was fine. Hubby grabbed fast passes for Expedition Everest. Then we did the Nemo show. I really liked this show! I rode Expedition first then hubby. My older son was too scared to ride. I really liked that ride. The highlight for me. Then we had lunch at Flame Tree BBQ. Hubby and I split the half slab ribs meal. It wasn't enough, but I figured we'd have a snack later. The kids split a hotdog again. After lunch we headed to Dinoland. Hubby grabbed fast passes for Dinosaur. We rode Triceratops Spin. Didn't do Primeval Whirl. Younger son wasn't tall enough. Then we rode Dinosaur. My kids love dinosaurs. They were scared on it but fine. The kids played in the Boneyard for awhile. We watched the Bugs Life show. That was fun! Then we headed to Camp Minnie Mickey. We had a jalapeno cheese stuffed pretzel and a funnel cake snack. We saw Thumper. We wanted to see Chip N Dale but just missed them. We skipped the Lion King show and all the rest. I would have loved to see the parade, but everyone was grouchy and tired. We went back and swam at the hotel.

Then we took the bus to downtown disney for reservations at Raglan Road. This was definitly a highlight meal.
We had the Dalkey Duo - Dalkey-battered cocktail sausages. Yummy corndog like things.

I ordered the Chieftain Chicken. This was delicious.

Hubby ordered the fish and chips.

Kids had the mac n cheese. Very good. And good bread too!

The waitress was great. We were seated right in front of the stage though so it was so loud. But they took a break and we had some relief. The dancers were pretty cool. They recognized my husband's birthday and brought out that Ger's Bread & Butter Pudding. OH MY GOD! That was so good. We were not charged for it. We shopped and then took the bus back.

I really didn't like Animal Kingdom very much. Maybe it was just that we were exhausted. If we do it again, it will just be a park hop there for a few rides. Our feet were burning and walking the trails to see animals was not appealing. Oh well.

Downtown Disney is fun. Wish we would have done that one more day. There were other restaurants we would have liked to try. Next time I guess.

Our 7th day, was check out day. We got a later checkout at noon. So we had breakfast there and swam at the pool until we had to go. The resort was very nice and we miss it already. We really loved the pool and beauty of the resort. We would definitly stay there again.

Thanks for reading my trip report. Until next time...have a magical day!
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DH , ME , DS9 , DS5
Disneyland - Stayed at Best Western Park Place Inn, Oct 2012
Disney World - Stayed at POR for our first trip, March 21-27 2012!
Disneyland - Stayed at Disneyland Hotel, July 2010
Disneyland - Stayed at the Best Western Park Place Inn, November 2006
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Old 03-30-2012, 02:39 PM   #7
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Sounds like you did really well for a first trip to Walt Disney World! You got to see and experience quite a lot! Some of that food looked really good. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:49 PM   #8
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Thanks so much for the park and food review!!!

When we took our first trip in 1986 with our two little ones it was two days and two parks(that was all they had back then). You learn what you can do by that first trip and know better next time. We saw all we wanted though. DTD was just a few stores and no food back then like it is today.

Now you know what to do and where you will eat again. I am so happy you enjoyed this trip and POR is one nice place.

Again - THANKS!!!
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Old 04-02-2012, 02:06 PM   #9
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Thumbs up Great Report!

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:07 PM   #10
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Great TR! My DD and I went for the first time last year it's amazing how much you do in a day and yet how much you miss. We are going again this year and are planing to hit as much of the stuff we missed last year as we can.
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Old 04-25-2012, 08:53 AM   #11
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Thanks for the great trip report! We are also staying at POR and your ride selection is similar to what we would choose. Thanks for the detailed report, especially including when everyone was tired and cranky.
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