We're off to see the wizards! We leave tomorrow!!

Discussion in 'Universal Studios Trip Reports' started by -Hope-, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    Hmmmm...

    My mom just got back from her cruise to the Bahamas. :hyper:

    She had a well deserved great time and was talking a mile a minute to fill us in... (no surprise there if you've been paying attention). :rotfl:

    She is insisting that the highlight of her trip was an excursion in Atlantis to swim with dolphins. She is so insistent and excited and thinks we should add a day at Discovery Cove to our trip. :faint:

    The price, the time, the fact that I don't really enjoy seeing animals in captivity. I'm not really sure about this. But she's so excited and this is her trip too.

    Decisions, decisions...
     
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  3. Twoboysnmygirl

    Twoboysnmygirl DIS Veteran

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    I think your kids would enjoy it! I know what I would do is talk a bit about animals in captivity and share your feelings with them and then go and enjoy! It is your mom's trip too, I'm sure they treat them very very well...right?!?! :confused3
     
  4. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    They do treat them well- it's all about conservation and education. And they limit the number of people allowed in per day (though the limit is like, 1000). The price includes tickets to Sea World as well as I think they are sister parks. I'm torn because it does sound really fun and cool but I feel badly for thinking that. I know, I'm completely nuts... :crazy2:
     
  5. Twoboysnmygirl

    Twoboysnmygirl DIS Veteran

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    You don't sound nuts to me, but I'm the choir, so I may not be the most unbias person in this situation! :lmao:
     
  6. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    :laughing:
     
  7. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    Well, when I told my mom how much DC costs she decided she didn't need to do that, lol! I may still talk to my dad between now and then to try to surprise her but for now we'll just plan on UO, LLF and DTD. :thumbsup2
     
  8. Tink-erin-belle

    Tink-erin-belle DIS Veteran

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    I’m not exactly one you could necessarily call “sane” either :rolleyes: but I think Karen’s advice is good. DC seems like a wonderful experience, from what I have read, and I am glad my kids don’t know about it because they would be BEGGING me to go :lmao: If you did surprise your mom, could that be something that she could take the kids to herself? Then you could get out of going and maybe enjoy some Me Time by the pool! :beach: :drinking1
     
  9. Alysa

    Alysa DIS Veteran

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    Oh my goodness! I love this report! Doctor Who and Harry Potter and Movie Nights! What's not to love! And you have so many Whovian readers too! :groom: So awesome! Really looking forward to hearing more about your trip. We are going to Universal and Hogwarts for the first time so it's great hearing all about your planning. Just wondering, we were going to remain at Disney (WL) for the whole trip and jut drive over really early that day. I noticed that was not one of your options on your chart. Is that a bad idea? Too far?
    Again, great report, looking forward to hearing more!
     
  10. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    :welcome: I'm so happy to have another Whovian! (And omg my autocorrect just finished Whovian for me, how cool is that?!) :groom: don't know about you guys but I'm still recovering from the fall season finale- but I digress. And don't want to give away any spoilers.

    I think driving over from Disney is a great option if you are doing Disney as well. I'd love to stick around long enough to do it all but we just don't have time. :( We did briefly toy with the idea of spending one day at WDW but we couldn't agree on which park. If the kids had wanted the same I'd have gladly let them have their way but the wanted different parks and it just seemed too complicated. :faint:

    I'm on my phone so don't see signatures, do you have a PTR??
     
  11. Alysa

    Alysa DIS Veteran

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    Yes, and I have lots of Doctor Who digressions on there so come on by for a cup of tea and a visit!
    "Tea! That's all I needed! Good cup of tea! Super-heated infusion of free-radicals and tannin, just the thing for healing the synapses..."
     
  12. BabyEeyore

    BabyEeyore DIS Veteran

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    OMG, the fall season finale! :sad:
     
  13. tlinus

    tlinus <font color=red>Proud Redhead<br><font color=teal>

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    :wave2:

    Welcome to the Darkside :rotfl2:

    I am enjoying your PTR very much.....just know there is a whole other side to planning for UO. It isn't as hectic and rush rush as planning for The World.

    mac is the "go-to gal" for our Little Space over here, and there are quite a few others here to lend a hand as well!!

    Glad to see another family giving it a go......looking forward to seeing more of your planning :dance3:
     
  14. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    I'll be over to check it out as soon as I update here! :hyper:

    I know! I've watched it twice now. :sad:

    I kind of figured it was going to go that way when I found out it was a weeping angel episode. Kya and I discussed it ahead of time and both agreed we were okay with it as long as they were together. :love:

    Thanks and :welcome: to my PTR!

    Yep, I've been exploring these boards and saw that mac was the resident dark side expert. ::yes::

    I love that the planning isn't quite as hectic. It's giving me plenty of time to really explore my transportation and lodging options as well as the other activites we might want to do. I love the "immersion" experience we had for our trip to WDW in 2010 but I'm also really looking forward to the variety we'll be able to experience on this trip. :thumbsup2
     
  15. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    I've found a PERFECT solution to our dolphin dilema. :cheer2:

    I know that Discovery Cove and Sea World are world class facilities, they treat the animals really well and are important for research and education vital to protecting these animals in the wild. I don't begrudge a single person their enjoyment in these places. But I just don't enjoy them- I spend the entire time feeling badly for the animals, wondering if even though it might be best for animals overall is it really best for these particular animals.:confused3

    With all that being said, I'm also really fascinated with the animals and used to enjoy zoos and other habitats quite a bit (before I really started questioning things). So, when the idea of Discovery Cove came up I was really feeling torn. Enter Clearwater Marine Aquarium. pixiedust:

    This is the animal rescue facility that was featured in the movie Dolphin Tale and it is ALL about the animals. The tours and activities are just a way to keep the doors open so they can continue to rescue, rehabilitate and release marine life. All of the animals that come through the doors are rescues and the only animals that become permenant residents at CMA (including Winter, the tail-less dolphin featured in the movie) are those who, for various reasons, would be unable to survive if released back into the wild.

    There are a lot of activities that can be added on to a day at CMA including a behind the scenes tour of the rescue facility and a dolphin wading experience. I'm still not sure we'll be able to afford the wading experience but there are so many other cool things to choose from that I think we won't mind. And Kya is extremely excited at the prospect of meeting Winter. :lovestruc

    It's a bit of a drive, about two hours from Orlando one way, but I think it will be worth it. We live in a rural area and are used to driving a couple of hours for special activities. :drive:

    I'm really excited at the prospect of adding this excursion to our trip! :hyper:
     
  16. Tink-erin-belle

    Tink-erin-belle DIS Veteran

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    That sounds like a great idea, Hope! The aquarium sounds like they are doing great work and it looks wonderful!
     
  17. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    Thanks, Erin! We're all pretty happy with the choice and really looking forward to it. :goodvibes
     
  18. Twoboysnmygirl

    Twoboysnmygirl DIS Veteran

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    You know, it's not the same responding to something you ALREADY told me about in person! ;) Fantastic idea! I love it! :thumbsup2
     
  19. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    :laughing: I guess I could just quit telling you things. Oh, who am I kidding- that will never happen! :rolleyes:
     
  20. Tinker326

    Tinker326 DIS Veteran

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    Hi Hope-

    I was following along on yours and Karen's thread awhile ago... and had talked briefly with you about our trip to IOA!!! I'm another big fan of Potter!!! Looking forward to following your report. I dropped off Dis for awhile becasue we just brought home our little girl from China & we are adjusting to our new crazy! :)

    We may just see you in Orlando!!! I have plans (in my mind) of a late Sept/early Oct trip next year for our little girl's 'first' trip to Disney. We will probably end up with a day at IOA again since we LOVE it!

    Just a few quick weigh-in's. We've done IOA twice- once at Spring Break and once in June. We stayed onsite both times & it was 100% worth it. But...we went at busy times. And it was worth it for express pass NOT early entry for us (the early entry time was crowded due to everyone going in early and going to one area (Harry Potter)).

    I would guess in September you would be fine offsite without the line privledges. I would probably stay off site if it were Sept due to the big cost difference. That also being said- I did really love the Royal Pacific Hotel. It's a nice hotel! (comparable to any deluxe at Disney!)

    The Harry Potter Ride with the fanny pack... as someone mentioned, it's a tight fit with the restraints. Like the previous poster- I just kept my cell phone in my pocket and it HURT being pressed against my hip. I honestly don't think I could do that ride with a fanny pack. But maybe I am just a weirdo with having my restraint TOO tight. :)

    I don't even know if this is at all on the table still- but DC. We did it before our oldest was born (she's now 10). It was, hands down, one of the best experiences of our lives. We are waiting till our kids are old enough (all of them) to take them to do it.

    **Edited to see that you are doing the rescue place instead which sounds AMAZING!! Me and my kids love that movie!!!! Can't WAIT to see those pics!**

    I can't wait to follow your journey & see your pictures (I love your pictures... you are a very good picture taker!)...

    Less than a year!! Woo Hoo!!!

    Nicole
     
  21. -Hope-

    -Hope- Always dreaming of adventure...

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    Hi Nicole and :welcome:

    Congratulations on the new addition to your family! :love: that is so very exciting. :goodvibes

    I hope we're making the right choice staying offsite. It's really what we want and prefer for our overall vacation experience so hopefully it will be okay as far as lines go. The same week at Disney had very few lines so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. If push comes to shove we can buy an EP and still come out ahead so I think we'll be okay. :thumbsup2

    I've noticed with the line app that the early entry wait times aren't all that great so definitely no worries there (thank goodness- we are NOT morning ppl. We only made rope drop once at Disney and that was only to ensure my son got to do JTA. )

    You're so sweet to mention my pics. I :lovestruc photography. Stay tuned for some beach pics- we leave in the morning! :hyper:
     

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