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Old 10-26-2012, 02:55 PM   #1
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Disney but not Disney!

Just had our first non-parks (well except for TL) DVC trip and loved every minute of it! No one who knows me can believe we stayed at Disney but didn't enter a theme park. I didn't think it was possible, but we did it and LOVED it! Trip consisted of DH, DS10 (11 tomorrow!), DD8, and myself. My sister and BIL were in Orlando also but stayed at an off-site timeshare.

We flew in Friday night and stopped at Super Target off 417 (thanks to disboards suggestions!). Checked into our 1-bedroom at OKW (building 35) and walked around the resort. Stopped by the campfire for some appetizer marshmallows then had a yummy dinner at Olivia's. We split a few dishes and all were good. DS especially liked the buttermilk chicken, but I thought it was just okay considering all of the rave reviews I'd read. DD loves ribs and Olivia's were delicious. Kids loved coloring pictures and having the CM hang them up.

Saturday we decided to take a surrey bike ride but since we'd already walked around OKW, we took the bus to DHS then boat to the Boardwalk to ride the bike there. Unfortunately we didn't realize that our kids weren't tall enough to pedal, so they would only rent us a 2-person surrey. DD refused to sit in the basket in front (which would be fine for a toddler, but an 8yo?) so instead we just went to the community hall and played some ping pong. We ate lunch at Beaches & Cream (DH and I split a burger) and enjoyed watching another table eat the "kitchen sink." We headed back to OKW and spent some time at the main pool. We played some of the poolside games. DD and I won the "ice cream crop" and got a goodie bag with various toys and some arcade tokens. DD swam in the pool and DS enjoyed the sand area. We played the "treasure hunt" poolside game, which was a sort of scavenger hunt around the pool area combined with some word puzzles. I knew all of those puzzles I'd done over the years would come in handy- we WON! Picked up our prize at the community hall, which was a treasure chest full of goodies (mostly cheap stuff we trashed). We did keep the arcade tokens, stuffed lion, and lanyard with pins. The kids thought we'd hit the jackpot! That night we went to BLT to look around and ended up getting drinks at the TOWL. It was empty around 6:30pm and had great views of the sunset. Then we had my 40th birthday dinner at Cali Grill. I had the carrot ravioli (yum but a bit mushy) and DH had the pork tenderloin. DS had the kids' salmon and DD had the kids' pizza. We had ordered a flatbread appetizer, but our meal came out first so they comped the flatbread and brought it out after (it was yummy but we were too full). They brought me a slice of chocolate cake, but I'm not a big chocolate fan so I ordered the banana napoleon. Yum! DS enjoyed the cake immensely (his birthday is tomorrow anyway). We watched the fireworks from the viewing area afterward and FROZE! We hadn't expected the cool breeze so hadn't come prepared. Still a great night!!

Sunday we had breakfast at Olivia's then took our groceries over to SSR to check in to the THV. We just kept our luggage in our rental car. We played mini golf at Winter-Summerland (played the winter course) and it was so much fun! We loved that the course was designed to have some hole in ones even for the kids. Then we spent a little while at DTD, but it was packed (line to EOS was out the door at 1:30pm but moved quickly). Got a text around 3pm that our THV was ready, so we headed there and cooked spaghetti for dinner. DD loved the bunkbed room and DS loved the other room, and it was great that they had their own space. The master was lovely but DARK (a few lamps but not enough light to read at night) and the bathroom was really cool. DD swam in the THV pool and enjoyed it.

Monday we spent the day at Legoland- DS is a HUGE Lego fan and we had been to LL in CA in 2010 so we knew what to expect. Had a great day- perfect weather- and walked onto everything. Had dinner at Sweet Tomatoes in Crossroads.

Tuesday we walked around SSR then walked over to DTD (longer walk than I expected). We took the boat to PO Riverside to try again to ride a surrey bike since my sister was with us and we could rent a 4-person bike. It was lots of fun- and lots of work! It was neat to check out PO. We ate lunch there (unremarkable) then headed back to our THV. We spent some time at two SSR pools- Paddock pool and High Rock Springs pool. Both were great but the Springs pool was COLD! DH and DS ditched the pool and played ping pong in the community hall instead. That night we went to Celebration to eat at the Celebration Town Tavern, which we love. My grandparents lived in Boston when they were alive and we used to visit as kids. I had fried clams with bellies, clam chowder, and a side of Boston brown bread and my sister had lobster (and taught my DD how to eat it). Great night, low humidity and we ate outside.

Wednesday we spent the day at Typhoon Lagoon. We had never done Disney water parks (well I remember River Country) and all thought it was great. Nice variety of slides, shady areas, and DS would have spent all day in the wave pool. We ordered pizza from Giordano's and DH went to pick it up. 90 minutes later he was back- they had messed up our order and forgotten to cook one pizza. So one pizza was hot and the other cold. Not a great experience. Next time we'll try Flippers.

Thursday we walked around AKV then had a special birthday breakfast for DS at Boma. We had eaten there for dinner a couple of years ago and it was his favorite- and breakfast did not disappoint! I LOVED the french toast bread pudding and the African fruit (fruit in a sweet coconut sauce). Everyone enjoyed the meal. Then we did some shopping at DTD (DS got some Legos for his birthday) then headed to the airport.

Still can't believe that we were so close to Disney parks but didn't go in. Next trip we definitely will! But we'll have fond memories of our first DVC stay- kids are already planning the next one. Hoping to do Aulani next year then back to WDW in 2014- kids want to do AKV. Sounds good to me!
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Old 10-26-2012, 07:27 PM   #2
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Sounds like a wonderful trip! We have taken some "one park day" trips, but it would be hard to do 'no parks' at all for us.

I didn't realize the treehouse villas had a pool. Does it have a slide? Or is it more of a quiet pool?

Glad you had a wonderful trip!
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Old 10-27-2012, 07:57 PM   #3
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Love it! We've taken one trip where we only did one park day (1/2 AK, 1/2 MK) but we stayed the week at OKW. It was during spring training so DH had tickets to 3 games during the week. It was one of our favorite trips ever!

We've talked about doing a "no parks" trip. We've gotten to where we tend to do a park day then an off day. We enjoy our off days as much as our park days! We still haven't done any of the water parks yet so maybe that'll be a good "no parks" trip.

Thanks for sharing your trip report

OUR TRIPS March '14-RPR/AKVK Oct '11-BCV Oct '10-HHI June '10 (Star Wars Weekends)-Swan/BWV Feb/March '09-OKW (Spring Training) Oct '08-SSR/POR (Alex's 1st trip) Oct '07-OKW (Our 1st MNSSHP) Dec '06-BCV (Our 1st MVMCP) Oct '05-BCV March '05-OKW/AKL (Spring Training/Jonathan's first trip!) Oct '03-BCV (first trip HOME!) Sept '02-POFQ (first trip for my mom!) Sept '01-Hard Rock Hotel (had to stay there!!) Sept '00-CSR (Millennium celebration) Sept '99-POFQ (honeymoon!) Jan '98 ASMu (first trip--the WDW addiction begins!)
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Old 10-28-2012, 06:31 AM   #4
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We love our non-park trips. I think my next trip will be "sans" parks. Bravo!
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Old 10-28-2012, 11:55 AM   #5
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We're doing a "non-Disney Park" trip in .... 17 days!!

The DW and DD want to see the Harry Potter thingy, so we will be at Islands of Adventure for a day ... but other than that, it's DTD, hangin' at AKV, and checking out the Christmas decorations at the Monorail resorts ...

... and then home ...
Me DW-Vicki DD-Danielle and DP Ranger and our new DP Sunshine

Off site - 8/76, 10/90, 10/94; POFQ - 5/07; AKL - 12/08; AKL - 9/09; Off site - 6/10; AS Movies - 3/11;
AKV-Kidani - 11/12; AKV-Jambo - 11/13 ; AKV-Jambo - 12/14

Dec 2008 Trip report at http://www.disboards.com/showthread....9#post29702539
Sep 2009 Trip Report at http://www.disboards.com/showthread....9#post34156519
Sep 2009 TR continued (but never finished) at http://www.disboards.com/showthread....7#post36403597
March 2011 PTR at http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2643038
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Old 10-28-2012, 02:08 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by westjones View Post
Sounds like a wonderful trip! We have taken some "one park day" trips, but it would be hard to do 'no parks' at all for us.

I didn't realize the treehouse villas had a pool. Does it have a slide? Or is it more of a quiet pool?

Glad you had a wonderful trip!
It is more of a quiet pool, no slide. There was a small fountain type thing feeding into the pool, which DD thought was neat. She definitely preferred the Paddock pool at SSR, but she was happy in the THV pool when it was her only option.
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Old 10-28-2012, 02:22 PM   #7
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We do a no-park trip for spring break and visit the parks on our November trips. Works great! We have visited 75% of the Disney resorts and there is so much to offer. We always go to the Polynesian to watch the fireworks or use the observation deck on the side of the Contemporary resort. Campfire at BCV or Fort Wilderness, watch a movie by the pool at SSR and visit the petting zoo. Each resort has something different to offer. We're doing the segway at fort wilderness this time!
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