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Old 05-18-2012, 09:59 AM   #46
Imagineer5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teknik_DC2 View Post
Thanks for continuing to follow and comment Imagineer5. Looks like I have two posts from you to comment on.



Yes Spiderman does have Single rider (which i'm sure you know now since the rest of my review for that day has been posted). You may not have seen it before because I heard they only opened it on very busy days before the rides upgrade. Now that with the Updates Single Rider is always open.

Yeah I saw you answered my question with your update! That's fantastic. Love the idea of being able to nurse in there too, while DH rides.

As for the potter expansion this is something i've been following very closely on other sites that talk more so about theme park workings and rumors then they are about vacation planning. Anyways the strong rumors are that a London area is going to be built on the Jaws/Amity land. Somewhere along the London fascade will be the enterance to Diagon Alley. It will be anchored by a Gringots "E" ticket that will supposedly make Forbidden Journey look like Small World. The shops in Diagon Alley will likely sell many of the same things as Hogsmead but they will likely be larger. Olivanders will also likely be built with multipule show rooms to help flow people thru quicker. Theres also been rumors of a possible Ministry Walk Thru or even a small family dark ride thru the Weasley Brothers joke shop. Then of course theres the rumor of Kings Cross being built with an actual Hogwarts express connecting the two areas. It could use a similar tech to the Kong Encounter in Universal Studios Hollywood which would keep the backstage area hidden from guests as they travel thru the backstage area. Its pretty exciting and i'm really interested to see what ends up coming out of these rumors when the finally release the details about the expansion. Its likely to be done in Spring 2015.

The Gringott's ride will be AMAZING if they do it right (which judging by FJ, they will!!). Thanks for the info - I had heard about a possible Gringott's ride, and the train bt IOA/ Universal sections, i just wonder how they'll make that work with tickets and such. It would be nice to have Ollivander's bigger. We skipped that last time bc I knew I wasn't going to buy a wand and was happier spending my time in FJ or the shops or whatnot.

Yes Using Single Rider with Child Swap worked great. I seriously can't recommend this enough if its just the two of you with a small child or infant going to the Universal parks. You can do it on any ride that offers single rider.

Kiera does get frustrated sometimes with having to breast feed still but its worth it to her. Its alot of work but she made it work in the parks. Just rememeber to use the Baby Care centers and you'll be fine. Most of them are in the center of the park so they aren't really too far out of the way. Kiera liked the Baby Care Centers in the Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios the best because the nursing rooms were private so she didn't have to cover up and could feed Daniel the best in them. She could also bring the stoller in to those ones. I was allowed to join her in the private rooms if I wanted to. However in Magic Kingdom and Epcot the Nursing area is just one large room that you share. Needless to say Kiera used the cover up in there as well and I was not allowed to enter the room. Although there were waiting areas I typically used the time to go do rerides or grab fastpasses as it usually takes 30-40 minutes for Daniel to feed.

Oh thanks for the info about the baby care centers. That's nice to know AK and HS are private, so DH can go in too. Otherwise yeah he'll probably just shop or go ride something. He hates being on his own, which is why I ask.

I'll have to take a close up picture of the ornament and share it. Its nothing real special. Its like a ceramic plate with Harry Potters picture in the middle surrounded by Griffendor colors. On the back it has the Wizarding World logo on it. They also had the same ornament with Ron or Hermione on it. They had one other as well that had the Wizard World logo and the Hogwarts house and school crest on it. They were located near the registers in Felches.

I would def buy it though - I looked online and it's not on Universal's online shop. So nice to hear they have ornaments now, they must have had a ton of ppl requesting them.

I too was kind of suprised about what house I was in from Pottermore as I thought i'd be a Ravenclaw. Oh well though i'm happy to be a Hufflepuff.

Yeah I thought I'd be in Ravenclaw too! Oh well.

As i've said I think with a 2 park pass and utilizing Single Rider with Child Swap you could easily see both parks in a day. Start out at IOA doing the Wizarding World first, then bounce around the park hitting the highlights of Jurassic Park, Spiderman, Hulk, and Cat in the Hat. Then head over to the Studios for the 2nd half of the day and hit the major stuff with Mummy, Simpsons, MIB, Rockit, and ET. Then catch the new parade and night time show. It will be a busy day but I'm confident enough that its do able. Danny loved the Night Time show as it was his first time really seeing Fireworks. Plus he liked the colored fountains too.

Anyways I think that covers it all so If you have any more questions then just let me know. thanks again.
Thanks! And yeah - too cute that Danny loved his first fireworks show!! We hope to take Aria out for fireworks on the 4th of July to see how she will do at Disney. Hopefully they don't frighten her! We did get baby earmuffs, just in case (or if she's sleeping or whatnot).
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Old 05-18-2012, 12:27 PM   #47
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I am joining in. Great posts so far! Daniel is absolutely adorable! I can't wait until my boys are a little older so they can enjoy all the super hero rides! They love Hulk and Spider Man! We just go to Disney but plan to start adding Universal days in a couple years.

Can't wait to read about your Disney days! I will be taking a 5 month old on our Feb. trip so I like seeing how you are having an easy time with Daniel!
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:06 PM   #48
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Day 5: Epcot Part 1


Today we would be starting the 2nd part of our vacation. The Disney portion of our trip. It had been a long time since ether of us had done a Full Disney World vacation. Heck our last Disney trip (minus a day at Epcot last year prior to a Cruise) was in 2008 to the Disneyland Resort. For Kiera the full Disney World trip was in 1997. For myself it was 1994. We were really looking forward to this part of the trip and to see all the changes and updates that had been made to the parks since then.

So what park would we be starting off the Disney portion of the trip at? Well you would think we would start out at one of the parks we havn't visited in a very long time. However we continued with visiting a park we most recently visited. Epcot. While planning this trip I used both Easywdw.com and touringplans.com. Both of them agreed that today Epcot would be the best park to visit. So it just kind of worked out that way. It worked out too that with Epcot being our first park of the trip that we wouldn't need to be at the park close to opening. With Soarin being the reason to be at the park at rope drop and since we would have to rider swap on it we figured we wouldn't be in too big of a rush as we planned to utilize Rider Swap with Fastpass.

Anyways we ended up taking our time getting to the park. We got up and got ready for the day and once again caught breakfast down in our Hotels lobby right before they started cleaning it up for the day. Afterwards we went back to our room where Daniel feed for the morning and at around 10am we were in the car and heading to Epcot.

We love how close we were to the Disney Parks. Within 5 minutes of leaving our Hotel we were on World Drive and crossing under those wonderful Walt Disney World gates and were now on Disney property. We had officially returned to start off our trip that we had hoped to do for years now.





Another 5 minutes and were driving up to the Epcot gates. I was suprised to find that Disney's Parking rates are still cheaper then Universals as I was expecting them to be the exact same. However Disney is still $1 cheaper with a rate of $14 for the day. Not a huge difference but a nice suprise. Hey thats $5 extra bucks in our pocket. We rounded the bend and there it was strait in front of us. The wonderful, magnificent Spaceship Earth. We were also suprised at how close our parking spot was considering the park had been open for over an hour by this point. Looks like the crowd predictions for the day were looking pretty good.




We walked thru the gates and entered Epcot. At this time the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival was also taking place. Last year when we came the Flower and Garden festival was also taking place and we really enjoyed it so we were really excited to get to see the festival again this year. The first topiary we saw is right at the enterance with Sorcerer Mickey standing high from the scene in Fantasia. It was really cute and I thought made for a more exciting enterance then the Toy Story characters did the prior year.






Now I said that since we planned to utilize Fastpass with Rider Swap that we wouldn't have to be at Epcot at rope drop to beat the crowds. That is true but it still didn't change the fact that first thing we should do for the day was head to the Land Pavillion and pull the Fastpass we need for Soarin. So thats the direction we went. We noticed things much busier at this time in the day compared to rope drop last year lol. The Character Spot had a 35 minute wait already. Something we walked into 20 minutes after the park opened last year.



As we approched the Land Pavillion this was also our first experiance with the Disney Stroller parking lots. By this point we were use to the stroller parking areas as Universal had them as well. However the stroller situation is very minimal at Universal as there was always just a handful of strollers parked there (with the exception of the Wizarding World ones). This though was just a sea of Strollers. They even had Cast Members stationed to take and park the strollers for you.



We entered the Land and made our way down to the Soarin enterance where there was a 70 minute wait already posted for the ride. Luckly for us we wouldn't be entering that ride at this time. Instead we went over to the Fastpass distribution area and pulled one Fastpass for the ride. As i've said a couple times already you can use Fastpass with Rider Swap. This basically allows you to have 2 fastpass tickets at one time for 2 differnt attractions. Since each time you would use a fastpass and a rider swap ticket to gain access for both parents to use the fastpass line. This was a plan I looked very in to before the trip and with the exception of today we didn't use it the rest of the trip as we found a better strategy to use Fastpass and Riderswap the following day. With 1 fastpass in our pocket we now had nearly 2 1/2 hours until our time window would be up.





Since we were in the Land we figured we might as well do one of the other attractions here while we waited for our Soarin return time to come. That attraction would be Daniels first ever Disney ride and one of our personal favorites. Living with the Land. We fell in love with this ride last year as we found it very interesting to see how Disney grows plants, fruits, and veggies for the resorts. The wait was posted at 10 minutes but it really took about 5 before we were on our boat and on our way.



This slow boat ride starts out in typical classic Disney dark ride fasion starting out passing different scenes of rain forests and deserts and the great planes as your told about farming and agriculture and even the animal life that come from these areas.





After that you head out into the green houses where Disney grows many different types of foods that are used in the resort. Its really interesting to see not only how much stuff Disney grows in here but also How its grown as Disney uses newer and more advanced techniques then your typical Gardens or Farms do.






They also have a fish hatchery with a bunch of different types of fishes and even some aligators.



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Click Dates below for Links to Past Trip Reports

February 2008: Carnival Pride Mexican Rivera Cruise - Hollywood - Santa Monica | December 2008: Disneyland - California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood - Knotts Berry Farm - Las Vegas | October 2009: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Glory Eastern Caribbean Cruise | October 2010: Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida - Carnival Legend Western Caribbean Cruise | April 2011: Epcot - Carnival Dream Western Caribbean Cruise - Charleston S.C. | April 2012: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida | December 2012: Disneyland - Disney California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood | May 2013: Myrtle Beach S.C. - Charleston S.C. | September 2013: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Dream Eastern Caribbean Cruise | June 2014: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure

Last edited by Teknik_DC2; 05-19-2012 at 11:02 PM.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:08 PM   #49
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The tour concludes by taking you thru some final green houses before returning you back to the unload area. As I said we really enjoy this ride as we like seeing how these items are grown and its one of the few "educational" rides left in Epcot. We consider this ride a must see when at Epcot and one of these days if we ever make it back we really want to do one of the Behind the Seeds tours that gives you a walking tour thru the greenhouses instead of taking the boat.











After finishing with Living in the Land we exited the Pavillion until later when we would come back to use the Soarin Fastpass. With a lot of time to pass still we next went to one of the Lands neighboring Pavillions. The Seas with Nemo and Friends. With how close the two pavillions are located to one another we decided to leave the stroller parked at the Land instead of moving it with us.





The Seas with Nemo was one of our favorite Pavillions last year as we loved looking at the sea life contained inside. Right at the enterance of the pavillion is the Nemo ride. Many people rave about how awesome the que for Nemo is and I honestly didn't see anything to special about it last year when we came. I credit that to the fact that last year we literally had no wait for the ride. This year the wait was about 10 minutes so we finally got to take in more of the que. I never noticed it transitioned as if your on the beach and slowly go deeper and deeper under the water. Slowly passing underneath the bottom of a boat before find yourself boarding the calmshells deep in the reef. Its really neat to see what they've done with this que so pay attention to all the little details.



This omnimover takes you deep under the sea as you join Nemo's family and friends searching for him as once again the little clown fish is lost in the ocean. You encounter many of the sea life that you see in the movie including Sharks, Jelly fish, and even a non projected Angel Fish That was unfortunatly broken with no movement whatsoever. Well thats isn't very Disney like now is it LOL. Once Nemo is found you pass the characters as they are projected as if they are swimming with the real fish in the aquarium which I think is a really cool. The ride is a decent little ride overall and Daniel loved it. However its fairly short and we still prefer the Nemo Subs in Disneyland much more as although you get the same story and its longer and a more unique experiance.





After your journey under the sea you disembark into Sea Base Alpha (I think they still call it this) where you can view the aquariums that hold the different animals and sea life. However before looking around the aquarium we first went to the 2nd attraction located within the Pavillion and one of our personal favorites Turtle Talk with Crush. Unfortunatly we barely missed the cut for the current show that was about to start so we had to wait about 20 minutes for the next show. But its worth it as the show is that cute. Plus the waiting area has alot to see in do as they do have many aquariums set up that you can look at. Some of which hold real Jellyfish and sharks or smaller ones that have the different fish types that the Nemo characters are. Daniel loved looking at all the different fishes and really enjoyed watching them swim around.







It was soon our show time so we found some seats in the theater and watched this cute show unfold. Crush reacts to the audiance in real time. As if he is actually there watching you. The younger kids go crazy for this especially since many of them get to ask crush different questions. The show is very funny to see how Crush reacts to some questions and the advice he gives the children. The show isn't way long but its totally worth checking out if you get the chance to.




The next area of the Pavillion that we brefly walked thru was the Bruce's Sub House play area. Theres a few play toys in here as well as a few fun photo ops and factoid games about different kind of sharks.


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February 2008: Carnival Pride Mexican Rivera Cruise - Hollywood - Santa Monica | December 2008: Disneyland - California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood - Knotts Berry Farm - Las Vegas | October 2009: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Glory Eastern Caribbean Cruise | October 2010: Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida - Carnival Legend Western Caribbean Cruise | April 2011: Epcot - Carnival Dream Western Caribbean Cruise - Charleston S.C. | April 2012: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida | December 2012: Disneyland - Disney California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood | May 2013: Myrtle Beach S.C. - Charleston S.C. | September 2013: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Dream Eastern Caribbean Cruise | June 2014: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:09 PM   #50
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Before exiting the Pavillion we now walked around looking at the different types of Sea life located here. First we stopped by the Manatee tank to see these huge animals. They were pretty amazing to watch swim around considering how huge they are. They were also eating cabbage at the time too.




Our final stop was by the large aquarium that you can view from the 2nd level. This pavilion has all types of cratures from small fish to larger Dolphins and Sharks and Rays. It really is pretty cool to see all these creatures swim around. Although some of them were kind of difficult to get photos of.






After we finished looking at the fish we exited the Seas pavillion and retrieved our stroller. We still had just over an hour to pass until our Soarin Fastpass could be used so we decided to cross the park to the other ride that we would have to use Rider Swap on. Mission: Space. First though it was time for Daniel to feed again. And because he needed to feed we needed to find a quite secluded area that Kiera could feed in (we still hadn't figured out to use the Baby Care Center). We ended up finding an area fairly quickly at the end of the path near Test Track. Since Test Track is closed right now and walls are up completly around the attraction nobody was walking down this direction anyways so it would end up working out great.




With a spot now found for Kiera to feed at we walked up to the Mission: Space enterance to get a Rider Swap card. Standby wait for the Orange Team was about 30 minutes. I figured since Kiera had to feed anyways then we would get a Riderswap and I would just wait to ride in the Standby line to kill the time while she feed. But the CM handing out the Rider Swap cards had a big suprise for us. We asked if we could get a Rider Swap card and he replied "Sure, Do ether of you have a Fastpass right now though"? This scared me now thinking they wouldn't let us use Fastpass and Rider Swap later. Those fears were quickly put to rest though when I replied "No, We don't". He responded "Ok. Well here take two Rider Swap cards then". Seriously how cool is that. We just got 2 rider swap cards when we only expected one. Kiera took one of the cards and went back to the spot we found to feed Daniel while I got an Orange Team card and with the 2nd Rider Swap card in Hand I entered the Fastpass line and literally walked strait into the preshow room.







Last year when we came I was the only one who was able to do this ride. Not because Kiera didn't want to but because she was pregnant with Daniel at the time. Last year I also deemed this ride as the most physically intense ride that I had ever been on. Well that continues to hold true after this year. This thing is a beast. I would recommend avoiding it if you get easily motion sick or clostraphobic. The ride is a lot of fun otherwise though as you set in a very small space ship capsil as you and 3 others fly to Mars. Not only are the G-Forces similar to those of an actual space shuttle launch but you also have tasks to accomplish depending on where your sitting. Its alot of fun and a ride that In my opinion is a Do not miss. If you can handle tight spaces but not so much the spinning thats used to accomplish the G-Forces then you can go on the Green team side which is significantly tamer as it doesn't spin.




As I walked out of the Mission: Space Pavillion I went and found Kiera still feeding. Since she was just about finished I quickly went to the Rest Room and then walked past my favorite ride in the park. Test Track. I want to say right now to everyone sorry that Test Track is closed and being remodeled as it is our fault lol. Test Track has kind of become Kieras cursed ride. Thats because she's never been able to go on it before. She missed its opening in 1997 due to all the delays it had with opening, She missed out on it last year because she was Pregnant, and well this year she missed out on it because its having its remodel done. She was sad to miss it again and so was I. Especially since it closed only 1 week earlier for its extended remodel. Out in front though they have a Chevy Camero and Cruze that you can look at with GM employees answering questions about the cars and Disney CM's there to take the verbal abuse i'm sure they get about the ride being closed.





When I returned to where Kiera was Daniel was now asleep and back in his stroller. She took the Rider Swap Card and headed over to Mission: Space while I walked around with Daniel. We walked up to Mission: Space's neighboring Pavillions. The first was the Former Wonders of Life Pavillion thats closed however during the Flower and Garden Festival it serves as the festival center. We didn't go up into it but they do have some neat Mickey and Friends topearys out in front. Daniel and I also walked past whats easily one of the Most boring attractions ever. The Universe of Energy. We went on this last year and it was 45 minutes of boring. So needless to say we skipped it this year.





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Click Dates below for Links to Past Trip Reports

February 2008: Carnival Pride Mexican Rivera Cruise - Hollywood - Santa Monica | December 2008: Disneyland - California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood - Knotts Berry Farm - Las Vegas | October 2009: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Glory Eastern Caribbean Cruise | October 2010: Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida - Carnival Legend Western Caribbean Cruise | April 2011: Epcot - Carnival Dream Western Caribbean Cruise - Charleston S.C. | April 2012: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida | December 2012: Disneyland - Disney California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood | May 2013: Myrtle Beach S.C. - Charleston S.C. | September 2013: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Dream Eastern Caribbean Cruise | June 2014: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:10 PM   #51
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As we returned to Mission: Space Daniel and I walked around the shop and the exit pavillion area. I was dissapointed to find no Tron merchandise in the Mission: Space shop as this was the only location I remembered seeing it in last year when we came. We ended up waiting outside the exit door for Kiera and before long she returned from her ride. She too did the Orange Team more extreme side but said the ride wasn't what she expected it to be based on how I discribed it to her. She still said it was fun though dispite wishing it was a little bit longer.






With Mission: Space out of the way we were now in the time frame where we could use the Soarin Fastpass. So back across the park we went and after parking the stroller again we reentered the Land pavillion. We made our way down to Soarin that now posted over a 100 minute wait. We walked up to the CM and asked for the Rider Swap card and he handed us one. Kiera took it and Daniel to go ride Living with the Land again while I used the fastpass we got earlier and entered the line for Soarin. After the long walk I finally reached the merge point where I was directed to the left theater. I was the last person let thru for this group and the line was almost all the way down the hall. I wouldn't be in the next show with how long the line was at this point but i'd likely be in the next. Then something awesome happened. A CM started looking for a Single Rider in our line. I didn't say anything at first as I was at the very back of the line. There had to be another single rider somehwere. She continued walking towards me looking for a Single Rider and nobody had responded yet. Am I really gonna be that lucky. Sure enough I am as she finally got close enough I spoke up and was taken right into the preshow area where I would be taking flight in the next show.



As we entered I was on the 3rd row of the attraction. This would be new to me as I've always been on the front row which is easily the best row to be on for Soarin. As I sat and buckled my seat belt an elderly man part of the group I was sitting with turned to me and asked if I was scared. He said he was really scared to go on this ride and that his family barely talked him into it. I assured him there was nothing to be afraid of as the ride is very mellow. He ended up loving the rider clapping his hands when it was over. Soarin is alot of fun but I do consider it possibly the most overrated ride in the resort. I honestly have no idea why it gets as long of lines as it does. I know alot of people get bothered by the fact that it takes place in California as well. The only thing that bothers me is the fact that it still ends in Disneyland. They also need to do some matenance on the thing as the Ride film is looking very poor and even worse the screens are filthy. As i've said before the ride is alot of fun and one you shouldn't miss while at Epcot. Just make sure you grab a Fastpass or be at the park for Rope Drop if you plan on riding it as I don't think its worth the rediculously long Standby waits it gets.

I couldn't have timed this any better as within 2 minutes of exiting Soarin Kiera and Daniel were unloading from Living with the Land. At this point though in the day we were both starving. It was time to find lunch. Although we could have eaten at the Sunshine seasons here in the Land we were in Epcot so we wanted to go find Lunch somewhere in the World showcase. Since we had the Riderswap Card now for Soarin we could return at any point in the day to use it. So we decided to go find Lunch first. We exited the Land and retrieved our stroller and started making our way towards the World Showcase. We passed Journey into Imagination on the way which we would soon be returning to. Right now food was all that was on our mind.



And that concludes this update. Stay tuned as our Epcot day is going to be a 3 part update. Please feel free to ask any questions you might have. thanks everyone.
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February 2008: Carnival Pride Mexican Rivera Cruise - Hollywood - Santa Monica | December 2008: Disneyland - California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood - Knotts Berry Farm - Las Vegas | October 2009: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Glory Eastern Caribbean Cruise | October 2010: Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida - Carnival Legend Western Caribbean Cruise | April 2011: Epcot - Carnival Dream Western Caribbean Cruise - Charleston S.C. | April 2012: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Islands of Adventure - Universal Studios Florida | December 2012: Disneyland - Disney California Adventure - Universal Studios Hollywood | May 2013: Myrtle Beach S.C. - Charleston S.C. | September 2013: Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure - Carnival Dream Eastern Caribbean Cruise | June 2014: Magic Kingdom - Epcot - Hollywood Studios - Animal Kingdom - Universal Studios Florida - Islands of Adventure
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:00 AM   #52
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Day 5: Epcot Part 2


As we entered the World Showcase I already knew what I wanted for Lunch. Some fish and chips from England. To get to England though we first had to pass by the Canada Pavillion. It seemed kind of like De'ja Vu from last year as we passed the pavillion right on by on our way to find Lunch.




The next Pavillion though was the one I was gonna be getting foo at. The United Kingdom Pavillion. We bipassed most of the pavillion though making our way to the Yorkshire County Fish and Chips stand. We got the fish and chips here last year and loved them. They are very good and are a decent price as well for the amount of food you get. Last year Kiera and I only shared this one meal for lunch. This year we shared as well but we would also get something else to share.





With the fish and chips now in hand we continued on to the next Pavillion where we would be getting food from and it also happened to be the pavillion located next to the United Kingdom. France. In France we would be making our way to the Boulangerie Patisserie. We saw this location last year after Epcot closed for the night and thought it sounded pretty good so we figured we'd give it a try this year. Little did we know at the time that this would become what we considered the best food deal in all of WDW. For $3.50 we were able to get a large toasted Turkey and Cheese Crossant Sandwich. We also got a Strawberry Tart with it for cheaper then the fish and chips were and it was just as filling. We also loved dining outside as it felt like we were sitting at a little cafe in France.





With our stomachs now full from our very good lunches and Daniel having fallen asleep once he was put back in his stoller we retraced our steps heading back thru France, the United Kingdom, and Canada on our way back to Future World. We still had things we wanted to finish in Future World before spending the remainder of our day in the World Showcase. On the way back we passed by the Sand Sculputre that was made for this years Flower and Garden Festival to promo the new Disney Nature film Chimpanzee. It still amazes me how they can make these amazing sculputres out of sand.




Since Daniel was asleep we figured it would be best to let him sleep for as long as possible. So we went back to the Land Pavillion so that Kiera could use the Rider Swap card we got early to ride Soarin. Only Kiera went in though so that we wouldn't have to take Daniel out of the stroller. I founded a shaded spot outside while she went in and rode. She didn't get thru the Fastpass line as I did though and it took her about 30 minutes to enter the Land, go down to Soarin, Walk the Fastpass line, wait in line to be sorted to seats, ride the attraction, walk back down the Soarin exit que, and finally return to Daniel (who was now awake) and I outside the Land. She agreed with what I said earlier regarding the line and said first thing the matenance issues are clearly noticible. Something neither of us noticed last year when we came.




Although its not a ride we consider a must see we decided that since we were right next door that we should take Daniel on Journey into Imagination with Figment. The line only had a 5 minute wait so we figured what the heck. It might be colorful. Daniel might like it. We entered the line and just like last year we walked strait to loading area with now wait at all. I guess the ride was a little more busy this year then last though as last year we had a ride vehicle to ourselves. this year each row had people in it. I faintly remember the original ride from when we went in 93 but I recall that version being much better then the current version. This one is so annoying at times and there really isn't any imagination being used. I would really hope Disney remodels this ride in the near future and returns it to its former glory. Unfortunatly it looks like we will be riding this version each time we visit WDW because Daniel LOVED it. He laughed and coo'ed and giggled the entire ride. We don't know if its cause he like figment, or the colors, or the catch song but he loved this ride. Although rides later in the week would get similar reactions out of Daniel none of them were for as long as he did on Journey into Imagination.




Even more so then the old version of the ride I remember the original Imageworks being much better when it was located upstairs in the Imagination Pavillion. Now the staircase to upstairs is blocked off and you can't go up there. Although the current Imageworks seemed fun it seemed like it would get old very quickly as we noticed that alot of the games were the EXACT same thing spread thruout. Seriously for a Pavillion that has such a good concept behind it, it is in seriously need of some significant help. Disney please fix this.




We now had one more attraction left in Future World that we wanted to do before heading back into the World Showcase for the remainder of the night. That ride is the one located in parks Icon. Spaceship Earth. So back to the front of the park we went. Before riding the ride though I thought it would be nice to have the Disney Photopass photographers take some photos of us in front of Spaceship earth. Although as we were heading back up to the front gates we got scitracted though by some characters that were out.



It was clear that Daniel loves Characters from our interactions with them at the Universal Parks. So we stopped to get photos and signatures from the 2 we came across. The first of the 2 was Daisy Duck. She had a Disney Photopass person with her so we got a card from him before meeting Daisy. Once again Daniel went crazy for her.





The second character didn't have a photographer though but thats ok as we got some good pictures with our camera. That second Character being Stitch and Daniel loved him even more grabbing his head and petting his fur and laughing and smiling the whole time.





Next we went in front of Spaceship Earth to get some photos I was telling you about. We found multipule Photopass photographers from different angles. One thing you should know about the Photopass Photographers is that they will also take photos with your personal camera too if you ask them too. Just don't expect them to take as many with your camera as they do with there (and sometimes not even the same angles they take with theres).


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Old 05-21-2012, 01:01 AM   #53
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Daniel at this point was once again getting hungry but with Spaceship Earth being a longer and dark ride Kiera decided she would try feeing him actually on the ride instead of waiting. We went to enter the Spaceship Earth que which would have pretty much been a walk on but we had a huge school tour group go in line right before us taking up the entire space from teh building enterance to the start of the line. Luckly though Spaceship Earths line moves very quickly so we only waited a couple extra minutes.





Once inside we boarded our "Time Machine" and the ride began. When it was time to have our photo taken we held Daniel up in hopes that it would also capture his picture and then the ride began. This ride is a classic and in my opinion a must do whenever you visit Epcot. Going to Epcot and not riding Spaceship Earth would be like going to the Magic Kingdom and not riding Pirates of the Caribbean. It still amazes me that such a great ride is located within the Spear. It amazed me when I was young and the engineering behind it still amazes me today. This ride takes you on a journey thru time to show how communication has changed and progressed thruout time. Its animatronic heavy and is really a great show to see.







The final decent is really the only thing lacking as although its cool how steep the decent is and the interactive touch screen you can see there are other scenes that are ment to be there from previous versions of the ride that are just covered up. I actually really like the interactive touchscreen during the decent though and hope they figure out a way where they can make the two (covered scenes and touchscreens) interact with one another. We thought the future video was really funny this time because the camera did capture Daniels face and implanted him and Kiera into the video instead of myself. Daniel feed fairly well during the entire ride but as we descended Kiera pulled him out so that we could unload. In the postshow area you will also see the photos of everyone coming off the ride and where they are from. I was suprised that all 3 of us were on the screen as I thought it would only capture two faces.







Since Daniel still needed to finish feeding we found Kiera a sucluded and quite location sort of behind the Guest Relations center. While she finished feeding Daniel I went into Guest Relations to get him on of the "1st Visit" pins. They have me one and even wrote 2012 to signify his first year visit. However I don't have any pictures of him and the pin or even the pin itself for that matter. Considering how many photos we took during this trip I still don't know how I managed to miss this Pin. Oh well. I'll for sure get one at Disneyland.



When Daniel finished we started to make our way out of Future World and to the World Showcase. We planned to spend the remaining part of our day here until the park closed. We made our way thru the Central Plaza and past some additional topiarys that featured Peter Pan and Captain Hook and found ourselves at the top of the World Showcase Lagoon. Last year they had the Cars Topiarys here but this year it was Farmer Mickey and friends with actual crops growing behind them.









At the top of the World Showcase Lagoon there is also a shop that we stopped and looked around in. We originally stopped in to see if the little World Showcase passport books were free or not (they aren't they cost I think $12) but While in this store we found an Epcot specific Christmas Ornament. It was the Spaceship Earth Spear surround by the World Showcase Country flags and said Epcot under it. Now I know I said we buy a christmas ornament each time we vacation somewhere but we are going to cheat a little here. Last year we couldn't find an Epcot specific ornament so we bought a more general Ornament that featured Spaceship Earth, Cinderellas Castle, The Tree of Life, and the Sorcerers Hat. So we are gonna clam that one for this years ornament and the new found Epcot one will be last years ornament as we only visited Epcot last year.



Exiting the store we found that we were right across from the Duffy Meet and Greet. Last year when we came to Epcot we bought a Duffy Teddy Bear for our then expecting child (we didn't know the sex of the baby yet). Since then Daniel has come to love his Duffy and he sleeps in his crib with him each night. So we were very curious to how he would react to a life size Duffy. As usual he went crazy for Duffy. But knowing who he was this was the character he loved possibly the most (riveling only the Lorax). He was full of smiles and giggles the whole time we were with Duffy and loved every second of it.

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Old 05-21-2012, 01:03 AM   #54
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As we walked towards the Mexico pavillion to begin our World Showcase tour I noticed the Oddysey Restuarant off to the side and then I remembered. Thats where the Baby Center is. So we stopped in to check out the Baby Center. After today Kiera would only use the Baby Care Center to feed Daniel in the remaining days. The Baby Care centers have all that you need for your baby care needs. They have the Nursing rooms as well as changing tables, a small kitchen with microwaves, high chairs, and even a waiting area for dads. We didn't ever use the Center this day but it was nice to see what options it gave. I can't stress enough that if your traveling to the parks with an Infant then use these centers. Take advantage of them especially if your a nursing mother.







The first country in the World Showcase we came to is Mexico. We parked the stroller and then went inside. Not only is Mexico one of two countries that has an actual ride located inside of it but its also the only Pavillion that is all indoors so parking the stroller is required.






Near the back of the Pavillion you'll find the enterance to the Gran Fiesta Tour featuring the three caballeros. The wait for the ride was 10 minutes and that turned out to be right. This boat ride takes you thur many Mexican scenes as you follow Jose and Panchito as they look for Donald Duck before there big concert or something. I really don't recall the old version of this ride but I don't think its a bad ride for what it is. Daniel actually really seemed to like it and loved the portion with all the small world type dolls singing. The ride isn't a must do but it could be worth checking out if you have the time for it.







After we finished the ride we continued looking around the pavillion before we made our way to the exit. On our way though we saw the kidcot station and thought maybe they would stamp Daniels autograph book like they would the passports. So Kiera asked if they would and they said the can. Awesome. The stamped the book and left him a little message in Spanish. This is something we would end up doing in every country thruout the World Showcase.




On the way to the next country we saw that Mexican Donald Duck was out so we figured we might as well stop and get some photos with him. Plus Kiera had a photo with the Mexican Donald from her trip in 97. Daniel loved playing with Donalds beak and Donald liked fixing Daniels fohawk lol.





The next country we came to was Norway. And its the 2nd country that houses a ride in it. Because of this we didn't put Daniel back in his stroller and walked strait to the line to ride Maelstrom. The line was posted as a 10 minute wait but it really took us about 15 minutes. For a moment we didn't even move so I don't know if it broke down shortly or what so thats the cause of the extra time. While waiting in line Danny ended up falling asleep and would remain asleep the entire ride.


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Old 05-21-2012, 01:04 AM   #55
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This ride takes you on another boat ride thru Norwigan history and folklore as you encounter vikings, trolls, and even polar bears. This ride can be somewhat compared to Pirates as its a similar boat ride with a small drop. However what I think is better about Maelstrom compared to the WDW version of pirates is in addition to final forward facing drop there is also a backwards portion of the ride and even a small backwards drop. I really, really enjoy this ride and my only complaint towards it is if it was longer. Still I think its a solid ride and one that shouldn't be missed on your visit to Epcot. You exit into a small Norwegian village where you have the oppertunity to watch a movie too if you'd like before exiting into the main gift shop of the Pavillion. After taking some photos with the Troll and getting Daniels book stamped we were on to the next country.






And thats it for this update. The 3rd and final update of our Epcot day will be up soon. Thanks for following everyone.
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:08 PM   #56
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This ride takes you on another boat ride thru Norwigan history and folklore as you encounter vikings, trolls, and even polar bears. This ride can be somewhat compared to Pirates as its a similar boat ride with a small drop. However what I think is better about Maelstrom compared to the WDW version of pirates is in addition to final forward facing drop there is also a backwards portion of the ride and even a small backwards drop. I really, really enjoy this ride and my only complaint towards it is if it was longer. Still I think its a solid ride and one that shouldn't be missed on your visit to Epcot. You exit into a small Norwegian village where you have the oppertunity to watch a movie too if you'd like before exiting into the main gift shop of the Pavillion. After taking some photos with the Troll and getting Daniels book stamped we were on to the next country.

so did they let Daniel ride Maelstrom? I thought it had a minimum height requirement. That is great news if they did. I dont think its any worse than Pirates so they should. 3 more weeks for us and we will be following in your footsteps! I'm seeing that we will need to add in many character stops. I havent done that in quite a while but it looks like the 6 mo. old will love it!
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Old 05-21-2012, 03:44 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Jfstorm View Post
so did they let Daniel ride Maelstrom? I thought it had a minimum height requirement. That is great news if they did. I dont think its any worse than Pirates so they should. 3 more weeks for us and we will be following in your footsteps! I'm seeing that we will need to add in many character stops. I havent done that in quite a while but it looks like the 6 mo. old will love it!
Yes Daniel went on Maelstrom. There is no ride height for the attraction so they had no problem with him going on it. We actually never ran into any issues with taking Daniel on attractions at the Disney parks. So long as there was no height limit he was allowed to ride.

And yes the Character thing was something we weren't planning on doing much of. However after seeing his reaction to them characters became a must do during our trip. I'm sure we could have got much more done in the parks though had we not put a larger focus on characters.
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:06 AM   #58
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Awesome EPCOT updates!!! Thanks for all the info. I'm interested to see what you figured out that was even better than the FP/rider swap combo! Too cute that Danny loved Figment. It sounds like he had a great day there. Your lunch sounds like fun with the combo of England & France!

I wondered how Danny would do on Maelstrom since it was so dark..but he just slept so I guess I won't find out LOL. The Flower & Garden festival looks so nice, IDK why I never have been during that time.

We are considering doing the Behind the Seeds tour this year bc we've always really enjoyed Living with the Land too! Was Danny bored or enjoying seeing everything? We'll also skip the Energy ride...

Looking forward to more!
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:59 PM   #59
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Day 5: Epcot Part 3


As we continued further into the World Showcase the next country we would come to would be China. This is one of the larger Pavillions with many neat details. In addition to being one of the countries that has a film attraction that you can view they also have other displays such as a miniature display of the Tarakata soldiers. Its really neat to see these soldiers and makes you think how much more amazing the real ones must be. China is also where we would be getting dinner tonight. We ate at the Lotus Blossom Cafe where I got the Shrimp Fried Rice and Kiera got the Orange Chicken. I really liked the Shrimp Fried Rice but if your not a fan of Shrimp then it probably won't be for you. As far as Characters you can typically find Mulan in China but she wasn't out while we were there.












The next area we came to is just that. An area. Its really not a country just a filler area between countries until someday (if were lucky) new countries will be built in its place. This area is called the Outpost and its themed kind of like an african village. During the Flower and Garden festival they also have a special beer stand/area set up featuring drinks from Haiti.







The next actual country that you come to in the World Showcase in Germany. And although we don't drink I hear that some of the best beer is located here. I've also heard that the buffet style restaurant is very good featuring many different German foods. Although it can be pretty pricy. We didn't eat in Germany on this trip but last year I got a brautwurst from here and it was very yummy. Germany is possibly one of the prettiest and most detailed pavillions in the world showcase and all of the shops are worth checking out here. Located just outside the pavillion is also a large train set replica thats alot of fun to watch as you wait for someone to use the restrooms. Those of you who like characters in Germany you will find Snow White.










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Old 05-23-2012, 08:00 PM   #60
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The pavillion we came to next was one of our least favorites last year and remained so again this year. Italy. For a pavillion that has so much to draw from it sure seems to lack. Other then very pretty facades and 2 restaurants theres really not much else to the pavillion. Add to the fact that one of the restaurants is being remodeled so half that pavillion is covered in walls and it really takes away what little the pavillion has. Even the kidcot location is outside instead of in a store like the others. I think this is because there really isn't even a store in Italy. Needless to say we moved on fairly quickly after this pavillion.






We were halfway around the World Showcase when we entered the next country of America. Here in America they have one main attraction called the American Adventure. This show is unique in that it uses all Animatronics to tell the story. But i'll have to tell you about it at a later time as we skipped it on this visit. Not because we didn't want to do it but with a show lasting over 30 minutes and the fact that we were now being pressed for time to finish rounding the countries to get Daniels passport stamps and the start of Illuminations we just didn't have time for it all. If you havn't noticed by this point I have tried to take a photo in each country with a different hat on. I tried this last year too but didn't quite make it to all the countrys. I didn't even realize there was a store in America last year lol.







As the sun started going down we found ourselves in Japan. Japan is also beautifully landscapped with lush gardens. They also have a huge shop thats sells all sorts of Japanese toys and goodies. Even some Non Disney products. They also have a pick a pearl stand. How this works is they have a tank full of clams and for $15 you can pick and clam and keep the pearl found inside. Kiera wanted to do this last year and even considered it again this year but in the end decided against it to use the money on something else.











We were now in a rush as we got to the next Pavillion as the sun was almost down now. That pavillion is Morocco and it is another one of my personal favorites as its very detailed and almost feels like a maze inside. Even the shops are very detailed and have the feel of being in an open air market. If you'd like to see more characters here you will find Aladdin and Jasmine. We didn't spend much time here though as we basically ran in, got Daniels stamp, got my hat picture and then we were on our way to the next pavillion. One where we had already been today.




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