Discussion in 'Disneyland Trip Reports' started by MarbleBob, Jul 16, 2013.
Great update. Love the panoramics and the FOOD PORN! Insanely good.
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Day 4, Tuesday, October 15: Continued...
After breakfast, we still had about 15 minutes before the Downtown Disney stores were open, so we decided to explore the hotel grounds a little more. We headed over to the Frontier Tower first, to check out the model of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
The real one was still closed for refurbishment, so we had to get our fix from this. So cool! It really makes me want to become a scale model builder
Look at all the little people getting on the train cars. Awesome!!!
After we explored the Frontier Tower's foyer for a while, we decided to head over to the Adventure Tower. On the way out, we noticed that Ol' Unfaithful was erupting. (Unfortunately, I didn't get my camera in time and I caught it as it was winding down. It was much more impressive at full blast when we arrived.)
I didn't even know that this existed until we stumbled upon it and read the plaque. Too cool!
I promise that we didn't both wear blue shirts on purpose!!
Entering the foyer from the pool side, they had some cool models from the Jungle Cruise and a giant mural.
The seating around the foyer was nice!
Heading to the Downtown Disney side, they had a staircase to the lower level. I believe that they have meeting rooms down there.
We headed out the sliding door towards Downtown Disney and stopped by the giant Sorcerer Mickey hat at the corner of the hotel grounds.
(I had to lay on the ground to get this angle)
Buddy is a HUGE Lego fan, so we stopped here first.
This place has something interesting for everyone. Pickle loves the Lego Friends line.
And of course the Ninja was happy to get a selfy with Gandolf
Next stop was the Build a Bear Workshop. But first, a quick look back to see the monorail passing through DTD.
Once we arrived at Build a Bear, Pickle wandered around the store changing her mind about what she wanted. Even though Build a Bear started in St. Louis, this was our first time inside one of these stores (except for Ninja.) She finally settled on a white kitty cat, since it reminded her of Marie from the Aristocats movie. The whole process was cute, so I video taped it instead of taking photos. Here are a couple of screen grabs from the video.
First they filled it up with stuffing...
Then they stuffed it with all kinds of goodies. (This place has money milking down to a science. How can you refuse your little princess the opportunity to add a beating heart, voice system, and strawberry scents to her kitten? Well, if you let her use souvenir money from from her generous grandparents, then you don't have to!!!!!)
Time to go clean her up! (Oops, I forgot to move the mouse out of the way before I took the screen shot from iMovie.)
Next she shopped around for clothes/accessories. She settled on a fairy wing costume and some ribbons, and then we were all set. They gave her a house and a paper Halloween headband/crown/hat whatever. I think it was kitty cat ears or something. Regardless, she was pretty darn excited!!!! That box was awesome, she spent a lot of time coloring it on the downtime in our room and at the airport on the way home. Such a great idea!
After Build a Bear, Stephanie took Ninja Potato to some shops that the younger two weren't interested in. I took them back to Lego to build cars for the outdoor race track. Buddy made quite a few cars to race, but this winged iteration is my favorite
Steph and Ninja went to shops like Vault 28, D-Street, and Sephora. Ninja picked up a few things, but this Little Mermaid eyeshadow set from Sephora was her favorite. (Stephanie purchased this for her as a reward for watching her siblings while we went to Trader Sam's on Sunday night.)
The colors each had a fun name like, who's-it, what's-it, dinglehopper, and snarfblat. LOL.
After we met back up, everyone was ready for a snack so we grabbed some pretzel bites from Wetzel's Pretzels. And then I took Ninja to look at the Roxy /Quiksilver shop while the others relaxed. Finally, we spent a good while exploring through the World of Disney store. I guess I was having too much fun looking around because apparently, I didn't take any photos in here.
Eventually, we decided to head back to the hotel. We bumped into Pluto on the way to the lobby.
Stay tuned for our lunch visit to Trader Sam's and then our evening at the Halloween Party!
What a great set of pictures from the Hotel and from DTD.
They are adding scents to the BaB now????? WOW! I haven't been to a store in quite a while.....must make a point to see if the scents are also in the Melbourne stores.
Here's to seeing your Halloween party pics.
Yeah, the scents were pretty cool. They had 4 or 5 "flavors" that you could choose from. I don't know how long they will last, but it's been about 2 weeks now and "Marie's" scent doesn't seem to have diminished.
Hope to get to the Halloween Party photos later today
You pics are making me more and more excited that I chose to stay at least part of our trip in DLH, My DD got a $60 gift card for her birthday this weekend to BaB for our trip, my son will be getting one from ridemakerz and for Christmas Ariel and lightning McQueen are sending them Disney gift cards and that with the money they have saved and will by then all of their spending money will be taken care of
Really enjoying your report!
Day 4, Tuesday, October 15: Continued again...
After meeting Pluto, it was about 1pm and we were all ready for lunch... So we started making our way over to Trader Sam's. We had our fingers crossed that we'd all be able to fit inside. Trader Sam's is amazingly awesome, but very small. There are only about 4 regular tables, a couple bar height tables for two, and then then the bar itself. We were happy to see that one of the tables was available. Pickle sat on Stephanie's lap since there wasn't really room for a 5th seat.
Sorry for the crummy photo... (It's really too dark to get good photos in Trader Sam's. I'm not the greatest photographer by any means, but I do have a lens with a 1.7 aperture and it was still tough. Oh well. I'll figure it out some day...)
Pickle was still enthralled with her new "fairy kitty"
Here's a photo of the bar, I was basically standing up at our table, that's how small/quaint this place is. But sooooo cool!!
They had one of these tiki poles at each corner of the bar. Love it!!!!
Looking out the "fake" window at Krakatoa The volcano erupts when someone orders a Krakatoa Punch. So much fun!
We ordered drinks first... I assumed that all three kids would want one of "Sam's No-Booze Brews", but Pickle and Buddy had Cokes. Ninja Potato went for the Skipper Sipper (Tropical Juices, Organic Agave Nectar, Falernum, Mint, and Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice topped with Soda Water.) She didn't really care for it. I'm guessing the falernum threw her off. I really liked it and offered to finish it off for her
Stephanie had a Piranha Pool (Strawberry Vodka blended with Pineapple Juice, Cream of Coconut, Strawberry Puree, and Blue Curacao). Great choice! Same as Sunday, she drank every last drop. I failed to get a photo of it.
I went for the Krakatoa Punch. This was my favorite from Sunday night. Another winner. Yum!!
They were out of souvenir tiki mugs when I ordered, but they got a new shipment in as we were eating, so I asked for one to take home. I also picked up a Shrunken Zombie Head, and I had already picked up the clear glass HippopotoMai-Tai mug on Sunday night. Great souvenirs!
Our food arrived a few minutes later.
First up was the Pu Pu Platter (Tamarind-glazed Island Pork 'Wings', Sweet and Spicy Asian Wings, Panko-crusted Chinese Long Beans, Green Papaya Slaw, and Sriracha Aioli) It was really good. Those fried green beans were to die for. Yum. Yum. Yum. Can't wait to go back some day. We shared this between us all.
So, yeah, "Poo Poo" platter. LOL. The kids laughed hard when I ordered it, and then plenty of jokes were made.
"Was that the number two special?"
"Hey dad, hurry up and finish your pu pu platter, I want to get on over to Mickey's Halloween Potty."
I'll spare you the rest of the jokes
Ninja Potato ordered the Fish Tacos (with Grilled Mahi Mahi, wrapped in Corn Tortillas). She shared, and they were amazing too.
They had a fancy Hawaiian Cheeseburger on the menu, but Buddy and Pickle ordered plain ones. They came with sweet potato fries, which neither of them enjoyed. But they enjoyed their burgers!
At this point, it was probably about 1:45pm or so, and we decided to head back up to the room and get ready for the Halloween Potty. (I mean party. I promise to behave from here on out. My mom is reading this TR after all.) The party started at 6pm, but you could enter the park as early as 3pm. We relaxed for a few minutes, the kids put on their costumes, and it was time to go!
Stopping by the Mickey and Minnie topiaries on the way out of the hotel lobby....
We arrived at about 2:30 and there wasn't much of a line yet.
First stop was the Haunted Mansion!
Ninja Potato got a lot of compliments on her Sally costume. Perfectly appropriate for this ride! The line was petty long, it probably took about 30 minutes or so. This was our first time seeing it with the holiday overlay. It was cool, but I really prefer the regular version.
Next up was Pirates of the Caribbean! Appropriate for Buddy's costume!!!
Hey look, we found Waldo!!!!
It sure was a lot of fun seeing all the costumes throughout the park. Such a festive atmosphere.
And then we road Pirates of the Caribbean. This has been one of my favorites at Walt Disney World since I was Pickle's age. But the DL version way better! And I love passing through Blue Bayou. So cool! We mostly skipped table service dinning on this trip, but Stephanie and I ate at here about 3 years ago and it was awesome. This sure made me want to come back!! (The food wasn't all that memorable, but the atmosphere and ambiance sure were! Great memories )
At this point, it was about 5:15 and we decided to go ahead and eat dinner before the party officially started. We decided to head over to Hungry Bear since we had never eaten there before.
I've just about used up my 25 image allotment for this post, so I guess I'll leave it here. Next up will be photos from our meal and then an evening of Halloween Party fun
Sounds like your trip planning is moving along nicely. Can't wait to see how you like DLH. You are going to write a trip report, right?
Thanks! I'm glad to have you on board.
I am I actually am thinking about doing a pre trip report when it gets a little closer and I have something to report
Cool! I look forward to following along
Day 4, Tuesday, October 15: Continued and finished...
So, we left off with us riding Pirates of the Caribbean and deciding to eat an early dinner so that we'd be all set when the party started at 6pm...
We decided to "Buzz by Hungry Bear to enjoy some vittles". None of us had ever tried their food before, but we had heard good things about it. So why not?
I guess the staff wasn't at full capacity for the dinner crowd yet, because it took quite a while. No problem, it gave us plenty of time to goof around.
Eventually, the food was ready and we headed over to find a table overlooking the Rivers of America
OK. Here come the obligatory food shots...
First up, we have Stephanie's watermelon/chicken salad. She really enjoyed it. She had really wanted to try the fried green tomato sandwich, but decided that she needed a break from the less than healthy food that we've been eating all week.
I, on the other hand, wasn't ready to care yet! So I went with the Fish sandwich, which apparently was a seasonal special. It was one of the best fried fish sandwiches that I've ever had. (Keep in mind that we live in Missouri, not exactly the seafood capital of the world.) The seasonings in the breading were great. I think I took it too far with the onion rings though. They were good, but I was on a fried food overload and couldn't finish them.
The slaw on the sandwich was awesome too.
Pickle decided to go for the "kids power pack" (or whatever it was called.) This turned out to be a great choice for her, as she ate nearly all of it and had a good doing so.
Finally, Ninja and Buddy both had burgers. Standard Disney burgers, but they enjoyed them.
Once we finished eating it was about 6pm and the kids were ready to do some trick or treating. Unfortunately, I didn't take very many photos the rest of the evening. My foot was sore from all the walking (I usually opted to park the scooter outside the trick or treat lines) and it was hard to manage a camera, bag of candy, and a scooter. LOL. Anyway, we trick or treated around the Splash Mtn./Hungry bear area for a while and then headed over to Fantasyland. We hit some of the trick or treat trails in Frontierland on the way over.
We got some more candy around the Dumbo ride and then noticed there was no line for Casey Jr. This was my first time riding it and I was pleasantly surprised. It was a blast, especially at night, in a crowded park, with a party atmosphere. People were hollering and having a great time. (This is something that I really like about DLR vs. WDW. WDW seems to be more laid back, lots of families on vacation. DLR has a lot of locals and kids in their teens/twenties... who tend to be more outgoing and energetic.) We were in one of the "caged box cars", and the ride operator didn't miss a beat by calling us a "bunch of wild monkeys" as she unlocked our gate/door and let us out.
Since the lines were relatively short, we went ahead and rode Peter Pan again, immediately went to Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (one of my favorites, since it was removed from WDW many years ago.) Next up was the Matterhorn again. We all LOVE this one!
And then, over to Star Tours.
All ready to board our StarSpeeder!
(I'm a Star Wars nerd, so this is always a blast!)
Love the theming in the gift shop as you exit the ride.
Bad picture, but being video game geeks, we had to stop for a couple rounds of Pac-Man
Stephanie had read that this was one of the areas that you could purchase Halloween Party merchandise (pins, shirts, hats, whatever) so we decided to look around. They didn't really have any good pins left, so they sent us to the shop across the street. The guy in there was awesome! He was one of those extra special cast members that you find only a couple times on a trip. He chatted with us about pins in general for quite a while and showed us a bunch of cool Halloween (and non-Halloween) stuff.
Anyway, we have a tradition of getting pins each time we go to a special event at WDW, so we had to continue the tradition here.
We each picked out something different. And we had to get the Passholder exclusive for Buddy. And speaking of pins, we always each get one from the hotel that we stayed at. (The top middle one in the photo is from the DLH.)
And still speaking of pins, each of our kids were afraid to ride Splash Mountain when they were first tall enough for it. We bribed Ninja with a Splash Mtn. pin in order to get her to give it a try when she was about Pickle's age. 3 years later, we did the same with Buddy. So of course, Pickle had to get one on this trip too. And sure enough, she loved it!
At that point, it was time to do some more Trick or Treating!!! They had a very long trick or treat trail going into Innoventions. This one was a gold mine as it moved quickly and had a lot of treat stations. About half way through, we stopped to visit Perry.
Next, up we saw another trick or treat trail, heading up onto Monorail platform. The last one turned out to be great, let's try this one too. BAD CALL. This trail took about an hour to get through and it only had a couple stations. And, once your are about a quarter of the way into the line, you can't exit without disturbing everyone behind you. Trapped!!! Oh well, who cares. We're at Disney. Let's eat some candy and goof off with all the teenagers around us.
After we finally got through that, we were getting tired. The fireworks were about to start in 20 minutes, and we just didn't have it in us to walk over to the hub and try and grab a spot. So we just parked in front of Innoventions for a while. No music, but you still had a great view of the fireworks.
I had hoped to get some nice fireworks shots using my tripod and an ND filter. But, dealing with that scooter and stuff, I decided to skip the opportunity. Oh well, there'll be plenty of chances to get some cool fireworks shots in the future. I tried my best to hold the camera steady on the scooter in order to get a couple shots, but never had much luck.
Buddy really wanted to ride Autopia, but the others didn't. So they stayed to relax for a while, and I took him over to ride it by ourselves.
Time for a bathroom break, so we header over to the bathrooms over by Alice in Wonderland. As we were ready to leave, the second showing of the parade was passing by, so we just stayed put for a while to watch it. It was cool, but it wasn't nearly as cool as the WDW counterpart.
Then we headed over to meet some princesses at the Fantasy Fair. The line was long, so I took Buddy to get more candy while the girls waited.
After the princesses, it was just about 11pm. We decided to make our way over to Adventureland and ride Indiana Jones. Hey, why are all the trick or treat lines closing early? Uh, I guess that's because they were closing at 11pm and not 12am as we thought. When we got to Indy, it was closed too. Oh well, it's late and we're all tired anyway. Let's go back to the room and look at our candy!!!
We pulled in quite a haul. This was just from my personal bag alone. The photo makes it look flat, but the pile was deeper than it looks. I've been eating a couple pieces each day since, and I doubt that I've even eaten half of it yet. We each had a pile about the same size and had fun making trades.
All in all, we had a super time at the party. Lot's of good energy. Lots of cool costumes. Lot's of candy. And unfortunately, lots of other park visitors. It was really crowded. We've been to the WDW Halloween party twice and both times were much less crowded. I'm not complaining too much though. I'd do it again in a heartbeat!
OK. Next post will start our "day off" where we rented a car and drove around LA for a day of sight seeing.
DW chiming in. I think you're doing a great job on the TR! It's fun looking back at all the fun we had. I've been thinking you need to get a PTR started for next summer.
Can't wait to get back to DL again just you and me.
BTW, that watermelon salad was excellent. I had been craving a good salad, and this was one of the few that I saw that didn't come with cheese (a good thing to me.) Your picture of it is great.
Did I miss something? Can you get regular fries now at the Hungry Bear? I thought you could only get sweet potato fries?
Also does anyone know if they brought back the ribs to Taste Pilots in DCA?
Very nice updates from MHP.
Nice to see that you had dinner at Hungy Bear Restaurant. Your family look really nice int he costumes during the party.
You can still get regular fries at Hungy Bear Restaurant. You have the option of substituting for the sweet potato fries for $0.50 if you don't want regular fries.
Taste Pilots hasn't brought back the ribs which is a shame.
I loved that you went to Hungry Bear and it would appear that you didn't order the Fried Green Tomato sandwich either. When Bret and I were there, none of us ordered it either.
Love the costumes that your kids had on.
I can't wait either. Let's make it a date!!!
Thanks! The next post starts with our trip to Little Tokyo. Thanks again for the tips when I asked about it on your TR.
Yeah, Stephanie really wanted to try the fried green tomato sandwich, but the salad was too appealing at the time. I guess we'll try again on a future visit
O how cool you got to see Tatiana(Sp?) her and Ariel are 2 must sees on our next visit!!....Sucks about the Cards We will get em next year though
Your welcome and I will be looking forward to read about your day at Little Tokyo.
Day 5 - Wednesday, October 16 - Sightseeing in LA
Happy Halloween everybody! Stephanie took the kids out trick or treating and I'm handing out candy at home. It's sort of rainy tonight, so I've got plenty of time between doorbell rings to get day 5 ready. And here we go....
On our typical Disney vacations, we like to take an day off from the parks to have a change a pace and/or recharge. In WDW, we usually swim at the resort, head to the outlet malls, eat dinner off property somewhere, and probably spend a couple hours at Downtown Disney. On this trip, we were torn about what to do on our non-park day. On the one hand, we were staying at an awesome hotel and could easily just swim, explore, and relax all day without getting bored. On the other hand, there are a gazillion things to see and do in the LA area, and Pickle hadn't seen the Pacific Ocean yet. So, we opted to rent a car and be tourists for the day...
I had already reserved a car for the day with Alamo in DTD. It was supposed to be ready at 9am. We arrived a little late around 9:15am, but it wasn't ready. It took about 30 minutes of waiting for it to arrive, not a big deal, but sort of annoying when we were all ready to get our day started. The people at the service desk were friendly and pleasant though. It was only about $40 for the day, for a full size car with a booster seat included. Not too bad, I guess.
We were on the road at around 9:45. First stop was Little Tokyo, in downtown LA. According to Wikipedia, it's at the heart of the largest Japanese-American population in North America and one of three official Japantowns in the US. (I've already been to the other two Japantowns in San Francisco and San Jose.) The San Francisco Japantown was on our original itinerary for the the road trip that we had to cancel due to my foot surgery. Ninja was seriously bummed about missing out on that. So, I figured it would be nice to take her here instead. (If you haven't read my original pre-trip report or followed along with this one in depth, basically, Ninja Potato is a fan of all things Japanese. From food, to anime, manga, music, fashion, Pokemon, Nintendo, Legend of Zelda, and so on...)
So, we arrived in Little Tokyo around 10:40am or so and parked in a garage directly across the street from Village Plaza (where we spent most of our time.)
Most of the shops didn't open until 11am, so we explored the market/grocery store for a while. Personally, I LOVE exploring Japanese grocery stores. Especially the candy aisles! We easily spent 30 or 40 minutes just looking at everything. The girls loaded up on treats!
Here’s the pile of treats that Pickle got (what’s left after what she already ate before we got back).
Buddy didn’t buy anything and I forgot to get a picture of Ninja’s treats. She only picked out a couple things. Nothing like Pickle did
After that, we explored for a while, but the kids were hungry so we decided to go ahead and have lunch. We looked around and decided to go with Mitsuru Cafe. We originally planned to eat at a sushi restaurant, but the bean cakes and fried foods in the window were calling the girls names ("Hey Ninja, come have a taste. I'm yummy!" JK), so we decided to give it a try. Good call! The food was tasty, even if the place itself was a bit run down and dated looking.
We started with a few items from the window up front (I wish I had grabbed a photo.) First off, a couple Red Bean Cakes (Imagawaki). It was basically like a pancake with sweet bean paste filling inside. The girls LOVED them. Thought they were incredible. I don't think Buddy tried one, and I thought it was good, but not anything that I'd go out of my way for.
Then, we have a few fried things on sticks! (Sticks make everything better, right?)
On the top, we have Pork Shumai. Second row is Chicken Karaage. Bottom row is Octopus Takoyaki. They were each very tasty. Incredibly tasty. I wish I was eating some right now.
An then we ordered our meals off the regular menu. I went with the Tempura Udon. Very tasty! The broth was excellent.
Stephanie had one of the lunch specials. I can't remember what the special was called, but it came with beef, shrimp, eggs, ham, rice, and a salad. She really enjoyed her meal too!
Buddy went with with Pork Udon. He said that he liked it, but he didn't eat a whole lot of it. Not sure if he really liked it or not, because he never hesitates to let us know if he doesn't like something I tasted it and it was basically the same noodles/broth as mine. The pork was fine, if not a little on the bland side.
It looks like I somehow missed a shot of what the girls had. They shared at Teriyaki Chicken plate and an extra order of white rice. It came with a bowl of Miso Soup too. Ninja gobbled the soup down. Normally, Pickle wants her own bowl of Miso Soup, but she didn't want any today....
Notice the little purple action figure that Ninja picked up from the market. Cute!!
After we ate, we headed back into the Village Plaza to shop.
We spent a good while in the Sanrio/Hello Kitty store, as well as a few of the other household and gift shops. Saw a few Totoro and Cat Bus dolls, which always make me smile! After a while, we headed over to the old run down shopping mall to visit Anime Jungle.
Ninja Potato was in heaven here, and spent a good part of her vacation money
The others decided that we were taking too long, so they headed back to the Plaza to wait for us. We stopped at a couple of the other shops on our way back and then regrouped with the team.
The kids were ready for a treat/snack, so we headed over to Mikawaya for some mochi (ice cream wrapped in fluffy rice dough and dusted with powdered sugar (or something similar).) Oh my goodness!!!! If you like mochi, or even if you didn't before you came here, you'll love it. Best mochi ever! So good. And at a buck a pop, fairly cheap. (At least compared to $4 for a Mickey bar back at Disneyland.)
Lot's of mochi was consumed. We made several trips back up to the counter! (I said that I wouldn't go out of my way for the Bean Cakes, different story here. I would go far out of my way for these. Sooooo good!)
Ninja Potato eating a chocolate one, Buddy having mint chocolate chip, and the one on the table was Choco Hazelnut (made with gelato instead of ice cream.)
Mango, Green Tea, and Strawberry...
I think Ninja gorged out on about 5 or 6 of these and I probably had 3 or 4. It's OK, 'cause we're on vacation right?
After we finished up our treats, it was about 1pm or so. We decided to move on to our next stop, Griffith Observatory to see the famous Hollywood sign. Stay tuned
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