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Old 09-25-2012, 05:26 PM   #241
TinksThree
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Originally Posted by sherylcin View Post
I agree! The closest we get is the arrival of the luggage tags from ME!
Well, I just don't think that is fair!!

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Originally Posted by solana131 View Post
Oh yeah....luggage tags. I knew that Sorry, I always book room-only, so I am new to this Mickey Mail stuff. I just get the ME booklet.

Undercover Tourist was a great price, but I got the paper tickets and they don't work well in the FP machines or entrance booths. I found out the last day of our trip that we could've gone to a Guest Relations desk and they would've just given us the plastic ones instead. Nice to know that before We struggled with them all week! From now on I will just get them through AAA.

Great AK update! I have never seen Flamingos in the trees...and the lion moving around is so cool. I usually get to see just his lazy butt laying down hiding!
We have booked room only before and since we don't fly, I don't even get ME booklets! So when I do get to book a package and get Mickey Mail I get all excited!!

Oh, I know all about those paper tickets...we had them in March and,well, you'll see! But I didn't know you can get them exchanged for hard tickets! We were not told that! The paper tickets aren't real great when you are doing water rides and in the rain. I am constantly trying to be sure the tickets are okay.

We usually see the lion laying around or if we are lucky part of a foot. This was probably the 2nd time I have actually seen him up and moving around!
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Old 09-25-2012, 07:41 PM   #242
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Well that safari ride sure debunked the theory of "afternoons are no good for seeing animals"! My pics of the lions usually consist of, "Oh, yeah, I see that tuft of hair above the rock!" We had a giraffe get up close and personal on our last safari ride. Our driver said you don't want them to lick you cause it would feel like a bristle brush on your skin. It was very cool having him(her?) so close though. Too bad about the Kali River ride being shut down although I have to say that sky looks pretty ominous. Would have made me want to get inside a substantial building!

Appreciate the pics from Rafiki's since that's one place we have yet to visit. Looks interesting for a short visit anyway!
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Old 09-25-2012, 09:01 PM   #243
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What a great safari! Baby elephants and the lions were up? So lucky!

I keep meaning to get over to Rafiki's. I know that Maddie would love it. I really, really hate petting zoos though, so I'd have to steer her away from it.
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Old 09-26-2012, 08:58 AM   #244
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Originally Posted by sherylcin View Post
Well that safari ride sure debunked the theory of "afternoons are no good for seeing animals"! My pics of the lions usually consist of, "Oh, yeah, I see that tuft of hair above the rock!" We had a giraffe get up close and personal on our last safari ride. Our driver said you don't want them to lick you cause it would feel like a bristle brush on your skin. It was very cool having him(her?) so close though. Too bad about the Kali River ride being shut down although I have to say that sky looks pretty ominous. Would have made me want to get inside a substantial building!

Appreciate the pics from Rakiki's since that's one place we have yet to visit. Looks interesting for a short visit anyway!
[B]I have always avoided afternoon rides due to what I have heard and read but this particular afternoon was golden! My viewing of the lion usually is similar to yours! I adore giraffes and love getting up close to them. at zoos I will stand and watch forever, well, until Keith and the kids started stomping their feet to get me moving! We have a drive through safari close to here that has giraffes. You ride in a wagon and can buy feed for the animals. It is so cool being so close to them. The giraffes come right up to you and they are just so beautiful....very cool being close!

We decided with those skies and our evening plans we didn't want to take any chances!

It was our first visit to Rafiki's and was one of those "why not?" moments. I am really glad we did! So many interesting things to see and experience there![
/B]

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What a great safari! Baby elephants and the lions were up? So lucky!

I keep meaning to get over to Rafiki's. I know that Maddie would love it. I really, really hate petting zoos though, so I'd have to steer her away from it.
I really felt like we scored on that safari!! And the driver would stop often and frequently which I liked!

The petting zoo is off in a corner of sorts. If she doesn't know it is there, you might would be able to keep her clear of it. I really think the reason I saw it was because I knew it was there. I am not a real bug fan of petting zoos either so I usually avoid.
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Old 09-26-2012, 11:10 AM   #245
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Wow! The animals were really up and about during your safari! Major score getting pictures of the lion walking around. This past trip was our first time to see them even moving.

I'm glad that you found the time to get over to Rafiki's Planet Watch. We've found that it's a nice get-away from the hustle and bustle of the park crowds.

Oh my! Those sky pictures look scary!
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Old 09-26-2012, 02:36 PM   #246
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Wow! The animals were really up and about during your safari! Major score getting pictures of the lion walking around. This past trip was our first time to see them even moving.

I'm glad that you found the time to get over to Rafiki's Planet Watch. We've found that it's a nice get-away from the hustle and bustle of the park crowds.

Oh my! Those sky pictures look scary!
I used to think the lion was just a stuffed animal they stuck up their to make everyone think it was real! It never moved and I could imagine seeing myself on Candid Camera taking a pictures of a stuffed lion and the comments being made! I was excited to get several good pictures!

We really enjoyed Rafiki's. Amazing that this was the first time to go after so many trips!
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Old 09-26-2012, 02:58 PM   #247
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Thoughts on my October trip....just 30 days away!!!

I have been doing a lot of tweaking on my October trip and I thought I would share the plans so far! For the most part there aren’t a lot of plans per se but we do have ADRs and I have a few things I know I want to try to accomplish!

I will start with my plans for eating (and not just the Food and Wine Festival eating)! One of my concerns is getting the most from my Free Dining credits and still be able to enjoy the F&WF without becoming a complete glutton!! So I have done a lot of making reservations, canceling reservations and making new ones. The one sure thing was Hoop Dee Doo since Keith really likes this and wanted to go again. The other sure thing was San Angel Inn because Keith wants to eat dinner here and had wanted to go there in July. When this trip came up those were the two requests he made, otherwise everything else was free game! I had also planned on going to ESPN for dinner on Sunday night to catch the Sunday night Football game between the Saints and the Broncos.

Our dates are Saturday – Thursday and we have 5 dining credits. HDDR is going to be 2 credits and since we like Category 1 we will go to the later show that allows us to use the DDP. That left 3 TS credits but I also knew ESPN would be OOP since I do not want to use Free Dining on that meal. Then became the scheming for where else to go!

Originally as some may remember the dining plan included these restaurants: HDDR, ESPN, San Angel Inn, Bongos and Biergarten. Keith would tell me it was all planned, leave it alone and blah, blah, blah! But I am a compulsive planner and some things just didn’t seem to work for me. There were things that just nagged at me in my head. San Angel Inn was one that I have probably cancelled and reserved again at different time slots and days 20 times! First it was the last meal on Wednesday with various time slots (because cancellations would open times I liked better so I kept grabbing those), then I moved it to Saturday with a few different time slots and it has finally wound up on Sunday night-more on that on the day by day breakdown!

Biergarten was another one that was moved a lot. It was on Saturday night, then Tuesday night and finally on Sunday night. It is now off the list! I really want to try Biergarten but for this particular trip and the tone I am trying to set it just seemed out of place. I know it will be on our list for very soon, just not in October!

Bongos was scheduled for Tuesday night. This was the first to go. The main reason was because as I began looking at the days and time I have for a short 5 day trip, having to go to DTD for an ADR wasn’t fitting well. If we go to DTD, it will be spontaneously and not planned. I was excited to try this place and may one day. And who knows, we may get there and try the counter service side or can do a walk-up sitting. But I decided an ADR just wasn’t feasible.

ESPN for a meal really wasn’t ever an option. This isn’t an ADR anyhow since you can’t make them. The plan for Sunday was originally to munch all day at Epcot’s F&WF and then move on the ESPN for appetizers and drinks while we watched the game. More on this in the day-by-day breakdown!

So you probably are wondering just what did I decide! Well, I am trying to get there but to get inside my head and how ADRs are decided and made is scary and probably why Keith said let’s leave it alone! But I can’t leave it alone until I get “that feeling”. I finally got it Monday night!

So the firm ADRs so far are HDDR (2 TS Credits), San Angel Inn (OOP) and ESPN (OOP). I also had made an ADR at Hollywood Brown Derby (2 TS Credits) which has me slightly excited! That count makes 4 TS of the 5 used and two OOP places. At one point I did have Biergarten as an additional OOP but that changed Monday as well. Our final dinner was going to be at Coral Reef but even though I want to return to this restaurant, it just seemed to be missing something for this trip!

Keith’s terms are that he likes ambience and one thing he likes about Disney restaurants are the themes. That is one reason he likes San Angel Inn. The food is not the most amazing food but the atmosphere fits Keith’s expectations. From what I have read about HBD, the ambience should fit the bill also. Plus we are old souls so the 30’s theme should be appreciated.

Coral Reef has the atmosphere but I remember the rude waiter we had the last time and since it was to be the final meal of the trip, I just couldn’t wrap my head around it.

So Monday I began revamping and got: Saturday night-no ADRs, Sunday night-San Angel Inn and ESPN*, Monday night- HDDR, Tuesday night-Brown Derby and Wednesday was Coral Reef but was now in the trash pile while I searched for something! I have been hoping something at Ohana would open up but nothing has and with Free Dining I would be surprised if it does. I continue searching but I am okay now with what I have planned that not getting it won’t be devastating.

So what did I choose for the final meal? First I thought about The Wave, then The Grand Floridian, maybe Les Chefs de France or Kouzzina’s? Finally after going through the availability list for Wednesday night and reading reviews on several websites and looking at pictures, I decided on none of the above!




I went with an early (or late depending on who’s view) ADR at Yak and Yeti! The park closes at 5pm this day and the ADR is at 4:45pm. After consulting with Touring Plans Liner people who said they do not rush you through dinner and it is a great way to end that part of the day, I went with it!

So now how about a day-by-day breakdown?! I have a few things in each park that I consider “musts” but the main reason I was wanting this trip was to celebrate my birthday at the Food and Wine Festival! These are the “musts":

MAGIC KINGDOM: Carousel of Progress, Mickey's Philharmagic, Monster's Inc, Haunted Mansion, Tiki House, Pirates of the Caribbean, Liberty Belle and Tom Sawyer Island

DHS: Toy Story, Indiana Jones, Beauty and the Beast, Lights Motors Action, and (of course) Tower of Terror!

EPCOT: Soarin', World Showcase, Food and Wine kiosks, and the Behind the Seeds tour

Animal Kingdom: Kilimanjaro Safari, It's Tough to be a Bug! and Flights of Wonder; ??Festival of the Lion King

Magic Kingdom is one park Keith hates so very little time here and I would really like to just hit a few things I seem to keep missing out on and also I want to see the Halloween decorations! MNSSHP is out for obvious reasons: Keith would rather have his teeth pulled. I tried to sweet talk but I didn’t want to push it!

Saturday, October 27

We will hopefully leave very early and head to Florida arriving around 5pm. Check in at resort and then hit a park. Three choices: MK is open until 12am, DHS is open until 9pm and has two Fantasmic! Showings (I hope to finally see this on this trip), and Epcot closes at 10pm. Epcot and F&WF on a Saturday night has a crowd level of 8.9 and the others are much lower. My plan is that the bus that comes first is the park we go to. Dinner will be Counter Service in the park.

Sunday, October 28

Magic Kingdom at Rope Drop (I could be alone here!). I will try to do as much of my list as possible by 11am. We will head to Epcot (do Behind the Seeds tour) and lunch at the F&WF but not too much since we have dinner at 5:30pm. That is kind of early but will get us through before the Sunday night football game. We will head to ESPN after dinner for dessert and drinks if Keith feels like seeing the game. Right now he is disgusted with the NFL and the Saints so we will see what the next 4 weeks hold! That was another reason for moving the Saturday ADR to Sunday. And since San Angel Inn is OOP I plan to order lighter since I will be snacking during the day!

We may also hit the Boardwalk area that we missed out on in July.

Monday, October 29

Possibly sleep in this morning and go to AOA to look around and eat breakfast at the food court. Arrive at Epcot around 11am-Noon and tour/eat. Option 1: hop on monorail to MK (closes at 7pm for MNSSHP) and go in for an hour or two before heading to Ft. Wilderness or Option 2: go back to resort around 5pm and then go to MK/ferry/Ft. Wilderness for HDDR at 7:30pm

Tuesday, October 30

*The morning portion is inter-changeable with Wednesday. Go to DHS at Rope Drop and enjoy TSMM, ToT, Beauty and the Beast and Indiana Jones. Then head back to the resort for a rest, swim and lunch. Then back to DHS around 3:30pm for Lights, Motors Action (I only want to see this since it may be the last time so if we miss it, oh well) and maybe Muppets 3D. Dinner at Hollywood Brown Derby at 6:05pm. There is a Fantasmic at 7:30 but I really don’t know if we can realistically make that, I am hoping for an added show since the hours for that week aren’t updated yet. If a show is added, we will probably wander around until the 9pm show, or else…well, who knows! Boardwalk….Epcot…..back to resort…?????

Wednesday, October 31—the last full day

*The morning portion is inter-changeable with Tuesday. Morning is pretty open. I have considered mini-golf at Fantasia, heading to AOA for breakfast if missed on Monday, or just hopping on a bus that shows up. DTD could be a possibility. Maybe even Epcot for light snacking. But then around 2:30pm head to Animal Kingdom and do a few things. Honestly this park wasn’t even on the list until I decided on Yak and Yeti (even though I adore it). Dinner at 4:45pm and then we will leave AK for a last night at Epcot. Epcot has EMH and although I doubt we stay until midnight we can enjoy illuminations if not yet seen and also wander the World Showcase. I love that area at night!

Thursday, November 1-Departure Day

We will head home today but I am hoping to talk Keith into one last park visit before hitting the road. We will have tickets for that day and I am leaning towards Epcot and doing lunch at any kiosks we missed or want more of. Then we can hit the road and arrive home late.

So what do you guys think of my planning?! I told Keith last night I am finally very satisfied with what I have and although that means 30 days of not planning anything, at least I know I am satisfied and very excited about my trip now!! (Like I wasn’t excited before!)
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Old 09-26-2012, 03:20 PM   #248
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I have been doing a lot of tweaking on my October trip....
I don't believe it...you...tweaking plans? The ultimate seat-of-the-pants, spur-of-the-moment, go-with-the-flow gal?! Say it ain't so!

JJ Your plans sound great! You'll have to give me the lowdown on F&WF since it will be this time NEXT year before DW and I get to experience it.

I'm giving 4 to 1 odds that the plans will change between now and trip time! You see...it takes one to know one and I know what I do!
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Old 09-26-2012, 03:31 PM   #249
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Oh, I know all about those paper tickets...we had them in March and,well, you'll see! But I didn't know you can get them exchanged for hard tickets! We were not told that!
Yeah, we had trouble almost every time we went through the turnstiles at park entry. The CMs could've told us then. We had trouble at every FP machine and had to get a CM to get one for us....they also could've told us. Nope, we were finally told this on our last day at our last FP machine! I was not happy.
I had been told that if you book room-only and get your own passes, that the concierge desk at your resort can add them to your KTTW card. But the CMs at POFQ that day didn't know how to do this. Hopefully next time we get a CM that was trained in ticketing.

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Biergarten was another one that was moved a lot. It was on Saturday night, then Tuesday night and finally on Sunday night. It is now off the list! I really want to try Biergarten but for this particular trip and the tone I am trying to set it just seemed out of place. I know it will be on our list for very soon, just not in October!
I've never been to Biergarten, but how can German food during Oktoberfest be out of place?? They probably have some really good specials going on thru October. Just sayin....don't want you to have to change your plans again, but just read this and thought Germany...Oktoberfest...seems good to me...
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Old 09-26-2012, 04:23 PM   #250
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The whole time I was reading the last update, I was thinking "this sounds just like something I would do". I understand that feeling you have when the plans don't feel "right". It can drive a girl nuts knowing that the plans are off somehow. It sounds like you've got it all worked out though and are satified with everything now.
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Old 09-26-2012, 07:33 PM   #251
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I don't believe it...you...tweaking plans? The ultimate seat-of-the-pants, spur-of-the-moment, go-with-the-flow gal?! Say it ain't so!

I know! I just can't leave well enough alone!!

JJ Your plans sound great! You'll have to give me the lowdown on F&WF since it will be this time NEXT year before DW and I get to experience it.

I certainly will!! I am super excited!

I'm giving 4 to 1 odds that the plans will change between now and trip time! You see...it takes one to know one and I know what I do!
I am not good when it comes to betting and would have lost that one hands down!! Just scroll on down!

Quote:
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I've never been to Biergarten, but how can German food during Oktoberfest be out of place?? They probably have some really good specials going on thru October. Just sayin....don't want you to have to change your plans again, but just read this and thought Germany...Oktoberfest...seems good to me...
As I was typing this I thought the same thing about Biergarten and Oktoberfest!!

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The whole time I was reading the last update, I was thinking "this sounds just like something I would do". I understand that feeling you have when the plans don't feel "right". It can drive a girl nuts knowing that the plans are off somehow. It sounds like you've got it all worked out though and are satified with everything now.
I suppose it is the planner in us! It felt so right and then I come home and decide to just check and see if Ohana has anything......

And I got Ohana!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I snagged a 9:30pm on Tuesday night which is a little late but fireworks from the Poly and then dinner sounds very enticing!! This also means Hollywood Brown Derby is out for Tuesday night. I also made a tentative ADR for Saturday at Biergarten (thanks @solana for that new quadary!) I can get an ADR for any of my remaining "3" on Saturday or Wednesday (our last night) but where do I choose to let go?? Can my Dis friends help me choose?! Do I let go Hollywood Brown Derby with 2 credits or Biergarten or Yak and Yeti!? I have never been to any of these three so I really am at a loss now! @saintstickets you totally jinxed me!!
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Old 09-26-2012, 08:02 PM   #252
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I can't believe that your trip is only 30 days away! That's so exciting!

You blow my planning out of the water! I always thought I was a crazy planner. I couldn't imagine canceling and rescheduling ADRs that many times.

I do have to agree, the ambience of restaurants in Disney make a huge difference.

The plans sound really good. Make sure you give yourself ample time to enjoy the F&W festival, because the few other times I've been there, I've always kicked myself in the rear and said "I should have done more F&W!"
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Old 09-26-2012, 11:31 PM   #253
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Yay! for scoring Ohana! But, Boo to being in another pickle. I really loved our lunch at Y&Y, but that's our least favorite park, so I wouldn't make a special trip there if it were us. I know that Roni (RGirl) and my MiL both really love HBD, but I've never been there or Beirgarten. Sorry to be of so little help!
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Old 09-27-2012, 07:30 PM   #254
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Your plans all look great! Congrats on getting Ohana!! I think whichever restaurants you choose, you can't lose. I think I've already mentioned that Biergarten is one of our must-dos. We love it and I think Oktoberfest would be an added bonus!

One suggestion if you do stick with HBD is to book it as a Fantasmic! package. It gives you reserved seating for Fantasmic! (has to be same day/night) so you don't have to squeeze yourself into the cattle drive that is the line of people going into the regular entrance. As far as I know (haven't done the package at HBD yet) you can order off the menu as usual and then they give you tickets for the reserved seating area. I've sworn I won't go to Fantasmic without the package again. That cattle drive was scary (especially with little kids)! Just a thought.............
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Old 09-30-2012, 08:11 PM   #255
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Wow! You had a really great safari ride!

Love your giraffe pictures!! The close-up one is so cute! Yay for seeing the Lion. We've only gotten a glimpse of him after 5 trips. That's so great that he was up and moving around and in the afternoon too!!

Your plans for your October trip sound great! Oh...and congrats on Ohana!! Glad something opened up. Hmmm...not sure about the choices. I haven't been. But, I've heard good things about Biergarten!!
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