Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by librarygeek, Jan 25, 2014.
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Welcome, happy to have you along!
Magic Kingdom Morning
We were up bright and early, through the security at MK and waiting around 7:45! I have to admit I don't think I've ever done morning EMH because I hate getting up early! But I was excited for this day and I knew we were planning to take a nap anyway, since we were going to the Christmas party later that night. Got to see the best opening show ever!
And then they let us into the park. It was my first time in Disney during Christmas, so as we made our way toward the rides while the lines were low, I tried to take in all of the awesome decorations!
First up was Space Mountain, which was fun as always. We went on the line where you go to the left when you walk in, and for some reason it wasn't quite as exciting as I remember SM being. I wondered if the two different tracks were extremely different or something, so we made a mental note to check it out when we went on SM again later, if we could. While we were in Tomorrowland we also decided to hop on Buzz Lightyear!
My next thought was to head to the Little Mermaid in Fantasyland and get to that before EMH were over. But as we made our way into Fantasyland we saw Peter Pan, and the wait was really short. It's something we pretty much never get to ride because the wait is always too long for what the ride is. DH had actually never been on it! So we did that first. It turns out that DH actually didn't like it all that much. He's much more impressed by the newer rides and doesn't have much appreciation for the classics like I do, but I like it for that reason. I'm glad we got the chance to do it this time around.
And here's why I love EMH!
So beautifully empty Once Peter Pan was over we did get on the Little Mermaid. I don't know why but I really love this ride. DH likes it too because he loves all the little touches - like going slightly downward to indicate going under the water, and then riding back up a little once Ariel turns human. It is very nicely done, and I feel like every time I ride it I notice something different or new.
By then it was about 8:55, so perfect timing to wait until the opened Frontierland so we could head right for my favorite ride, Splash Mountain! We only waited a few minutes behind the ropes before the CMs let us through, and we slowly made our way to one of my two favorite Mountains. We didn't have to wait at all. It was a little cool for getting wet, but still a lot of fun. And we requested not the front row so we didn't get too wet!
We decided it made sense to go on Big Thunder Mountain while we were in the area, so we did that too. I think Martin had a lot of fun. I enjoy it, though DH much prefers to go on it at night!
We then had a FP+ for Enchanted Tales with Belle. It turns out we didn't really need it because there wasn't much of a wait, but whatever. This was my first time with FP+ and honestly I found it a little frustrating, and longing for the old system. It's much more convenient to get a FP when you know what the wait time is. Now it kind of feels like you're gambling that something will have a long wait. With some rides you know they'll always be long, but especially with the tiered system it's hard. This happened in Epcot too - we had a FP+ for Nemo just because I didn't really know what to pick. But then when we went on it the wait time was only 5 minutes. However, when we went to do Spaceship Earth afterward the wait was 25 minutes.
Anyway, Belle was a lot of fun. There were some really, really young children that were in the show and they were just too adorable.
Next up we also had a FP+ to meet Cinderella and a visiting Princess in Fairy Tale Hall. Her special guest today was Aurora!
By this point it was around 10:45, and though it was early we had early FP+ reservations for the Be Our Guest lunch! We hadn't eaten breakfast since we knew we would be doing an early lunch, so we were actually starving by this time. We checked in and they had a little trouble locating my reservation at first, but then they found it. However, I had done the option where we pre-ordered our food ahead of time, and they had no record of that. So we had to order again, but it wasn't really a big deal. Then we went to sit down. We decided to sit in the Rose Gallery, since I've been twice for dinner and it's never open then. It was very pretty in there!
I had the turkey sandwich and it was really delicious. Unlike others, this was our third time experiencing Be Our Guest (twice for dinner, once for lunch) and I've had a fabulous experience every time.
They also had a really beautiful Christmas tree up in the Ballroom. It was nice but the ornaments were so fun! They were like stained glass ornaments of the characters from Beauty and the Beast. They should sell those, because I would totally buy them!
Wow, EMH and a party that night? You've got guts!
Yes, the tracks are for sure different on Space. I can never remember which is which though.
Haha, yeah, Pan is seriously low tech, but I agree; That's the charm.
I am definitely with your hubby. I won't even bother with BTM unless it's dark out.
I am with you on FP+, and you know, this is something nobody else ever really mentions. We all used FP based on the what the wait time was. Now booking 60 days in advance, who the heck knows??? Yes, you can change your FP, but only if there's any available. It's a little frustrating to potentially waste a FP, especially with only 3.
I have to admit, I fell in love with Be Our Guest last trip. Such a beautiful restaurant.
Catching up - as usual
Wow - international travelers have to show a passport to prove age? How incredibly inconvenient.
The pirate room is cute - not my thing at all, but I bet a lot of little boys would LOVE that! How fun! I cant believe your luggage wasnt there yet though; thank goodness it arrived right after you got the room. Phew!
Love the early MK start!!! I think thats my absolute favorite part of a WDW vacation - getting to the MK bright and early that first day with the whole vacation laid out in front of me. Perfect! And Christmas decorations on top of that! Beyond perfection! REALLY good call to do Peter Pan - anytime you can do that with a minimal wait, it is a must do in my opinion!
Im so glad you had another great experience at BoG. I think we will try lunch next time. I am in love with the Christmas tree ornaments - I would totally buy those too!
Your pirate room looks super cool! So much detail, it's crazy!
All those Christmas decorations are making me extra excited for my trip in December. Sounds like you had a great Magic Kingdom morning!
Can't wait to read more!
I know... it was all about that nap in between. And we didn't end up staying for the entire Christmas party.
Okay, glad to know I'm not crazy about the Space Mountain thing
And I'm also surprised that I don't see that complaint more often with FP+! To me that's the most frustrating thing about it. The whole point was you only needed one if the wait was too long, but now you just have to guess and assume the wait is going to be long or short. And with the "tiers" of attractions, like choosing between Test Track and Soarin', the only good way to get on both is to go at park opening and do one, while getting a FP for the other.
Yeah, I liked the themeing of the pirate room though it's not really my thing either. Though I appreciate anything that's themed really well. I am super excited to stay in a Royal Room is two weeks though!!
I never did morning EMH before because I hate getting up early... but after this awesome experience it's definitely something I want to do again.
And trying BoG for lunch is a good idea too - it's a more reasonable price to pay for the atmosphere if you end up not liking the food again, although we had a good experience (I'll be posting our lunch review in my dining thread soon! Probably Thursday since it sounds like we'll be having another snow day...)
Welcome! Glad to have you along! The pirate room was so detailed, Disney does that so well! It also makes me really excited to see a Royal Room at POR.
Yes, Christmas at Disney is truly magical!
Great update and pics.
Thank you! Hoping to do another update today or tomorrow!
Magic Kingdom Afternoon!
After lunch we did Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, which is always a good time. Since I know now what area "that guy" is always in, I tried to sit in it hoping one of our guys would get picked. Sure enough... the guy sitting next to our group was "that guy!" But hey, at least I was close. I think they usually tend to try and pick a dad or a guy that's a bit older, but someday!
We then had a FP+ to ride Space Mountain again, so we did that. This time we were able to go to the right, and the track on that one is definitely better! We had a much more enjoyable time. So lesson learned - if possible, go to the right!
We were starting to get a bit tired and ready for our afternoon break, but there was one thing I wanted to make sure we did before it got dark, and that was the Jungle Cruise. It's usually not a priority, but I'd heard that they rethemed it as the "Jingle Cruise" for the holidays and I was really interested in seeing that. So we went over there... and it was temporarily down. Boo! But, since we were in Adventureland anyway, I decided it was time to get my absolute favorite Disney treat: a citrus swirl!
We grabbed a table nearby and enjoyed our snacks. DH also got a citrus swirl, and I think Martin got some sort of ice cream soda float. My swirl was fantastic as always. We decided to head out after that but walked by the Jingle Cruise one more time... and now it was open! The wait was about 25 minutes but we decided to just do it. It was cute - basically the queue had a lot of added holiday decorations, and they redid a lot of the jokes to make them holiday themed. We were also lucky to have a fantastic skipper, the best one I've ever had on that ride. His name was Ramon, so shout out to him! He was very peppy and funny. Even when our boat got stuck for awhile at the end because the one in front of us was unloading someone handicapped, he kept the jokes coming nonstop!
After that ride it was around 2:00 and we decided it was time for our nap. We headed out of the park, passing a big bunch of balloons as we did so!
I think I fell asleep pretty instantly once we got back to the room. Then we were up and ready to go again around 5, so we could make our dinner reservation at Liberty Tree Tavern. Our plan was to eat and then head out to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas party! Even with our reservation we had to wait awhile to be seated because it was crowded. I don't think we waited quite half an hour, but it was close - at least 20 minutes or so. That's about the longest I've had to wait for a reservation.
We entertained ourselves by looking at the gingerbread "houses"... and then sitting down at the kids table and coloring Disney pictures!
Anyway, once we were seated they started bringing out our courses, and everything was really, really good. I actually wasn't expecting to like it as much as I did! Believe it or not, I think my favorite was the green beans... they were roasted in I think olive oil and garlic and they were just addicting! It was also around this time that we could just barely make out the fact that they had turned the Christmas lights on on the castle! My very first glimpse of it (even though this is a terrible photo):
Once we finished dinner we decided to hop on Haunted Mansion since it was right there and the line was short. The ride was fine, but we had some of the absolute most obnoxious people in front of us. They were screaming and singing at the top of their lungs in the stretching room so that you couldn't hear anything, and then even through a lot of the ride. It totally ruins the atmosphere when people are singing loudly during it And believe it or not, this wasn't the only time on our trip that obnoxious singing was a problem! I wish for Martin's sake we had gotten the chance to ride this again, but we never got around to it.
Alas, it was lame but after that it was on to the Christmas party!
While I was a bit disappointed in the "Jingle Cruise", I really blame myself for maybe expecting too much. If I hadn't heard about it beforehand, I probably would have thought the "additions" were great. But, OMG, if you get stopped near the end with a good skipper, it's the best. TONS of jokes that you'd normally never get to hear.
Ugh, I'm sorry you had that happen in the Mansion. I just don't understand why people feel the need to ruin other people's experience.
Yeah, I was disappointd with the Jingle Cruise too. I thought they were going to do more with it. I don't really know what I was expecting, but I kept looking for things to be different and it was pretty much the same. Luckily our awesome skipper made up for it!
Hi Becky, I'm joining in here too! Sounds like your trip got off to a great start!
Ugh, I hate when people are being overly obnoxious on rides! There's a difference between having fun and getting into the spirit and just being a pain.
Yay, glad you're over here too! Yeah, I can't believe how disrespectful and rude people can be. I think they were also trying to make HM scarier by screaming and doing spooky things, but they also made a little girl cry. It really annoyed me!
I hate rude people on rides.
The Jingle Cruise looked cute.
It's awful how other people can ruin something for you!
Even though Jingle Cruise wasn't a huge thing, I loved the little touches. I think that's the sort of thing that Disney does really well and should do more of, especially during the holiday season!
Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party
The first thing we did after riding Haunted Mansion was go to get some of the free cookies and hot cocoa, since it was chilly and something hot sounded quite good! I did eat one cookie even though I was still full from dinner. We hit up Pinocchio's Village Haus for this. Since we were in Fantasyland, we decided to meet Mary Poppins and Bert by the carousel!
And this is when I discovered that my penpal hated waiting more than 5 minutes for anything. I think us Disney people are used to it, but he was very impatient. I think we waited about 20 minutes for this meet and greet, and he complained for most of it So I knew at that point we wouldn't be doing many character meet and greets, which was what I was probably most excited about for the party.
He also would not stop complaining about the cold. Yes, it was about 50 degrees. I am the queen of being cold, it's one of my least favorite things. But I had a sweater and a fleece on so I was okay. And he's from Norway, shouldn't he be used to it? Hahaha. So we went to Main Street to get him some coffee at Starbucks as well as a sweatshirt. Though I managed to convince DH to stop for a photo on the way
Once we were done on Main Street the first parade was starting, so we decided to watch. It was very crowded but we could see okay. I was planning to wait for the second parade which I thought would be less crowded, but we were here anyway! I couldn't get great pics because there were a lot of people in front of us, but it was definitely a cute parade.
And I am just so in love with the castle with all of its icicle lights!
Once the parade was over we grabbed a spot for Holiday Wishes off on the side. It was a great show, though in some ways I missed regular Wishes.
It had definitely gotten colder so I knew we wouldn't be staying too much longer. We decided to do something inside, and since we hadn't been on Pirates yet we made our way over there. On the way we passed Tiana with no line, so we hopped over there!
We rode pirates, which was nice, and then on our way out I spotted a few random characters hanging out with no lines and had to get some pictures! I found Captain Hook and the Genie.
At this point it was around 10:30 and we made our way out of the park. It had been a long, full, but very fun day.
Overall I enjoyed the Christmas Party, but I need to go back when it's just me and DH. I don't feel we really maximized our time there and we didn't get to half of the stuff they had to offer. Granted, we were up since 8am for the EMH at MK, so it had been a really long day. We did take a nap and I could've kept going, but not everyone has the super Disney power that I do when I'm in the World! It just gives me something to look forward to when I do get to go back during Christmas sometime. And the stuff we did get to do I really enjoyed!
Gosh darnit (I'm trying to keep things Disney language appropriate) I somehow totally missed out on Bert and Mary. So bummed about that.
Um.... He's from NORWAY!!!!!!! So NO COMPLAINING ABOUT THE COLD!!!
Oh man, what's Genie doing just wandering like that???? Really cool!
And WOW, amazing how much it cooled down just after I left (not that I'm rubbing it in).
You'll just have to go back to the Christmas party again to meet Bert and Mary!!
I didn't expect to see the Genie just walking about, but I definitely couldn't pass up the opportunity!
It did get cold, though I think this was the coolest day that we had out of all of them. But it was never really hot either. I think I had some sort of light sweater or sweatshirt on almost every day we were there.
Oops - somehow I missed your pre-nap update. Sounds like you had a great day at MK.
Too bad that some of the magic of HM was spoiled by other guests.
The party sounds like so much fun!! LOVE the pic with Mary, Bert and the penguins. How cute is that???? What a shame though that your friend wouldnt do the lines - I know the special character meets are a big part of those parties. At least you got to meet some towards the end of the party!
I love the castle pics - so pretty.
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