A DLR Guide for WDW Vets

calena

<font color=red>BL II - Red Team<br> <font color=g
Joined
Jan 17, 2005
WOW!!!! Have to print this out for DH! Just great, and just what I was looking for as a WDW veteran! Thanks!
Deb
 

mommabo

Mouseketeer
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Cue Arsenio Hall "dog pound" .......... woo hoo hoo hoo :cheer2:

Seriously Hydroguy this is a great comparison and will help so many visitors to DLR. I myself have only recently (last year or so) gotten more involved in Disney trip planning after taking my family of 5 to WDW for 10 day last January. If it weren't for the people on the DIS boards and TGM, it would not have been near the success that it was. Now you have provided some tools to help other have an enjoyable and successful DLR vacation (yes, to us it is still a vacation from everyday life :) )

As for me, I had been to DLR as a child and mini-stops while visiting in SoCal, but never put much thought into the planning. For our vacation to WDW (which I had been only once before, many years ago, without children), boy did I plan! Friends who had been to both WDW and DLR said they prefer DRL. I thought how could that be. I thought WDW would blow DLR out of the water. Wrong! As you say, it is just a different experience, not lesser, and in many ways (to us at least) better. Now with the Dis boards, ridemax and all your helpful information I have no doubt our upcoming vacation (only 3 weeks away) to SoCal that includes a 3 day stay in DLR this August will ROCK (as my kids say). As a matter of fact, we have learned so much and want to go back, we have decided to upgrade our passes to AP's and take mini-vacations throughout the year (we live in AZ and are only 5-6 hour drive away).

Wow, come to think of it, Disney should give you some kind of payment for all this great info that encourages more people to to to their resort. Hey, there's an idea ....... free passes for Hydroguy! From my mouth to the Disney god's ears, right? Well since that is unlikely to happen, I hope our gratitude will suffice. :love: Woo hoo hoo hoo!
 
  • Disney Magic

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 22, 2006
    WOW! I wish I had read this before our first trip to DLR this year. For many things, you are “spot on”, and would have helped us avoid many unfortunate mistakes. Having first-hand info from a DLR vet who seems to have strong emotional ties to the parks is much different that getting info from a brief writeup on the DLR website.

    The description of the differences between the MK/DL parks was quite thorough. As you mentioned, some attractions are noticeably better in certain parks, but most of the attractions had just subtle differences. I also agree that the DL park is better than the MK park, but as a whole WDW is much better for a total vacation experience.

    I think you really hit the “nail on the head” when you described DL as more of a locals/AP park than WDW. That was very noticeable to us. Your statement that DLR can be seen in three days was true for us. We were actually scheduled to spend our entire vacation at DLR, but after three days we had seen and done everything…somethings even twice. We were then faced with last-minute decisions as to what to do for the remainder of our vacation. Well, being the “beach bums” that we are, we headed for the beaches. Not realizing that the Pacific Ocean is always cold, we showed up at the beach in our bathing suits and we realized we were in trouble when everyone else was there in wet suits! Needless to say, we couldn’t go in the water and felt like we wasted valuable time that we could have spent elsewhere. Oh if we had only read your description of the Pacific Ocean beforehand.

    I felt it was a great suggestion to combine a visit to DLR with other southern Calif attractions. That will definitely fill up a whole vacation week.

    The estimate of how long it takes to get to San Diego and Universal would have been helpful to us. It’s one thing to look at a map to determine how far places are from Anaheim, but actually getting “real time” estimates based upon traffic patterns is a whole different story.

    Your guide explains that the fireworks/Fantasmic are not shown every night. When planning a vacation well in advance of a visit, the DLR website just doesn’t give information on nightly show times that far in advance. I think it’s important for a WDW vet to know that these shows are not shown nightly, so they can plan accordingly. You mentioned you never had to think about taking an umbrella to DL, but someone who has been to WDW would never even think that nighttime spectaculars are not shown every night at DLR. So that’s a good point you made.

    Another good point was about Fantasmic...no stadium seating. For us, Fantasmic was total chaos…never, ever again! We really didn’t care for it. On the otherhand, please emphasize that every WDW vet MUST see the fireworks show and Aladdin. Both shows are fabulous. I also really liked the way you described the DLR…something to the effect that just because it’s smaller doesn’t mean it’s less magical…one just spends less time enjoying the magic. Everyone should have the opportunity to experience Walt’s park. The one thing we weren’t prepared for, though, were the crowds…WOW!

    The one statement I can’t relate to is that one can spend 50% more time in the parks at DLR. We never had a problem with transportation, but that’s not to say you didn’t. We never had to wait more than 20 minutes max, and there are many hotels where we can actually walk to certain parks. We actually enjoy taking some of their transportation….the boat ride from Port Orleans to DTD, the boat rides from the Polynesian, Ft. Wilderness and Wilderness Lodge to the MK, the boat rides to EPCOT and The Studios from the hotels in the EPCOT resort area. It’s quite relaxing, and the scenery is beautiful. We also enjoy the monorail from the MK to EPCOT. But, to each their own.

    You did a remarkable job of putting the guide together with only being at WDW for 10 days, and it will be a great source of info for first time DLR visitors. But I’m sure this is a “work in progress” for you. As a frequent vacationer to WDW, I would like to suggest one more point that you may want to add to your guide. You had mentioned yourself that DLR is not an actual vacation for you, and for the tons of Southern Californians who go to the parks often, it probably isn’t a vacation for them, either. But for most who visit WDW, it IS our vacation. I can only speak for my family, but when we go on vacation to WDW we are looking for a total vacation experience. We want to have a self-contained resort available to us. It seems that when the DLR is discussed, the main focus is only on the DL Park. (I don’t know why DCA gets such a bad wrap. We enjoyed it as much as DL.) But to us, the MK Park is not the focus of WDW…it’s just one component of WDW. On vacation, we want to enjoy all four parks and spend a good deal of time in the parks, but we also want some time for relaxation at a wonderfully themed resort, and take time for WDW’s recreational activities, fine dining opportunities, water parks, night life, and partake in their festivals, special programs and special events. It’s just not all about the parks for us. When we go to our local amusement park, we are ride warriors, but while on vacation, we want to take advantage of everything Disney offers, but take things at a slower pace. So, for vacationers like us who place a high importance on fine dining options, and leave the parks during the day for relaxation, boating, golfing, horseback riding, night clubbing, shows, etc., we all really missed that aspect of our vacation during our stay at the DLR. You mention in the guide that there are no water parks and no DisneyQuest at DLR, but there is no mention about the types of recreational activities, special events, special programs, and festivals that are available at the DLR. There might be a lot of activities, but we just couldn’t find any. A listing of all the non-theme park amenities that DLR offers would have been very helpful to us.

    One final note, I really think nostalgia and sentimental memories play a HUGE part in the way one feels about a park. Those who made family memories and grew up going to DL will always feel “at home” at the DLR and have a very special bond with the park, and those who created their family memories at WDW will always have a special place in their hearts for WDW. For us, the reason we never made the trip to DLR was not because we thought it was a lesser park (like you mentioned some may feel), but it was because we enjoyed WDW so much we just didn’t feel the need to make a cross-country trip to experience the Disney magic.

    Again, great job. That must have taken a lot of time and effort on your part. You must truly love DLR to go through all that trouble to ensure that others will get as much enjoyment out of the DLR as you do.

    Just one question….which resort(s) at WDW did you stay at during your visit?
     

    JayS

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 29, 2006
    Disney Magic said:
    You mention in the guide that there are no water parks and no DisneyQuest at DLR, but there is no mention about the types of recreational activities, special events, special programs, and festivals that are available at the DLR.
    The previous posters comments about the lack of water parks reminds me that Knott's Berry Farm (about a 15 minute drive from DLR) has a water park, Soak City. I have not been to that park, but for those looking to make DLR a weeklong vacation, it is close enough to consider a visit. Also, about an hour away in San Dimas, is Raging Waters. That is a fairly large water park, with enough for people of all ages. Be sure to find out what time they open and arrive early, as this is a popular destination for summer camps to bring busloads of kids for the day. I'm not sure about Soak City, but Raging Waters closes completely during the winter.
     

    HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    Disney Magic said:
    WOW! I wish I had read this before our first trip to DLR this year...
    You obviously read my entire post very thoroughly, and gave some good feedback. If you have an interest in learning more about our WDW trip, I wrote up a very long, day-by-day trip report here:

    http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1152459

    First let's talk about park time. Let me compare our WDW trip to our last multi-day DLR trip. I checked my old DLR trip report (here, FWIW, http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=886607) to get our DLR hours.

    Without boring you with the details let me summarize what I found out. The DLR trip was in August 2005 (four full days). The WDW trip was in June 2006 (nine and a half days, of which seven were full park days, two were rest days, and one was a travel day in which we went to MK from only 5 hours).


    Average Hours Per Day Inside Parks

    At DLR - 11.25 hrs per day
    At WDW - 7.35 hrs per day (for me - counting the 7 full park days and not the rest days)
    At WDW - 6.5 hrs per day (for my kids - counting the 7 full park days and not the rest days)


    In my case it was 53% more time inside the parks at DLR. In my family's case, it was 73% more time inside the parks at DLR.


    Total Hours Inside Parks Over Whole Trip

    At DLR - 45 hrs over four days
    At WDW - 58 hrs over nine and a half days (for me)
    At WDW - 48.5 hrs over nine and a half days (for my kids)


    Did everyone get that last number? My kids spent almost as much time inside the DLR parks over 4 days than they did over 9 1/2 days at WDW! Wow! I just realized this when I added up the numbers for this response.

    One of the key reasons for this is the closeness of the DLR parks. DL was open later than DCA. At WDW, MK is usually open later than the other parks (not counting EMH). Every single night we stayed at DL until midnight. If we were at DCA in the evening, we hopped to DL afterwards. At WDW we could have bought hopper tix and hopped to MK at night - but it would be way too big of a hassle and was not worth it.

    In addition, we like to take afternoon breaks for a nap (we did this every day at DLR but only on three of our seven full park days at WDW - partly because the shorter hours at some parks make it not worth it to take a break). On average, from any park gate to our room door (and vice versa) took 45 minutes at WDW.

    I do not think your "20 minutes" number for transportation takes into account how long it takes to get from your hotel room to the park gate. That is the number that matters (to me anyways) - not how long you are actually waiting for or sitting on a bus or boat. Or, if you have a car, actually getting to your car, driving it, parking it, and then wating for a tram or monorail, and then walking to the park gate.

    I think 45 minutes is a minimum for the door to park gate time at WDW. Most people say you should allow an hour. In some cases your hotel may be closer to a certain park and you can walk there and make it shorter - for example, the Epcot area resorts are closer to Epcot and MGM. The MK and AK resorts are of course only close to those particular parks.

    The 45 minutes door-to-gate number is consistent with the Unofficial Guide data and http://www.ourlaughingplace.com/asp/twiz.asp?action=rts link for most any of the resort hotels at WDW.

    So, round trip for us was thus 90 minutes on average. At DLR it takes us maybe 15 minutes round trip. So if you take a hotel break, that means 75 less minutes at the park per day at WDW. This is not counting the 75 minutes of extra transportation time first getting to the parks and leaving at the end of the day.

    Just to drive the point home further, the distance one must walk from any WDW park gate to the bus or tram stop is about the distance we walked to get to the door of our hotel room at DLR.

    I have gotten feedback from others (such as Amy :wave: - the better part of Amy&Dan) who visit both DLR and WDW and they agreed with me that they spend a lot more time at the parks while at DLR.

    Changing to the subjects of "vacations", what you describe about dining and other "vacation type" activities at WDW is what I was trying to say when I said "DLR may not really be a vacation". Which is not to say that is bad. Like when I said that DLR "is all about the parks" for us, and you said at WDW it is not for you. And I can understand that. At WDW we had to broaden our "park focus" scope and try to take in more of WDW. And we did. We saw the Hoop-Dee-Doo Review. We went to DisneyQuest and water parks. We rented a watercraft and went out on the lake. My DW went horseback riding. We saw an outside movie (Finding Nemo) at the Fort Wilderness campground. Those are things we cannot do at DLR, and would not think about doing. Why? Because we are at DLR, and while there it is "about the parks", not about other stuff outside the parks. And we are not "on vacation" there. We are there to visit the parks. When we want to go to arcades, restaurants, dinner shows, etc., we do that elsewhere and not at DLR.

    For those who want the full WDW vacation experience you describe, DLR will not provide that in that way. But as I said, DLR provides other things, including more potential park time - if you choose to use it. This is one of the pitfalls, I think, of WDW vets going to DLR and trying to have a "WDW-like" experience as that is what they are used to.

    If I took my DLR expectations to WDW, what might I conclude? Here are a few potential conclusions/frustrations:

    1. It is so hard to get to the parks. How frustrating. You have to get on buses, boats, etc. I wish we could just walk to all of them.

    2. It is so hard to park hop. How frustrating.

    3. The park hours are too short. How frustrating.

    4. Why are there so few rides at the parks? How frustrating.

    5. The weather is awful (I know, I know, June is bad - but DLR does not have tropical storms like the one we encountered at WDW - or hurricanes. Many people are like us and summer is the only practical time to go to WDW.)

    Hopefully no one takes the above statements to mean that I am criticizing WDW. I am trying once again here to highlight the differences. Like I encourage WDW vets to do, I tried very hard to not make WDW fit my DLR expectations. If transportation takes longer at WDW, then that is part of what WDW is about and the price you pay for more variety of parks.

    To answer your last question, our accomodations were not my first choice. I was there for a business conference held at the Coronado Springs Resort (CSR), and I had a room reserved there for me and my DS14. However, circumstances conspired in early May that we all decided to go on this trip (except for DS13) and my DW wanted to have some place with a kitchen. At this point we were five weeks away and the only on-property choice available was a cabin at Ft Wilderness. This actually worked out fine, but then we did not stay at CSR as originally planned (which is of course a moderate and more centrally located within WDW).

    Ft Wilderness has its own internal transportation issues, and if we had relied on them (we didn't) we would have added another 30 minutes roundtrip to the parks each day. I fully understand that Ft Wilderness is in a different category from the other resort hotels, but it is nevertheless true that for many people transportation around WDW consumes a lot of time.

    In conclusion for everyone else's info regarding the DLR shows and Fantasmic, DLR does show them every day during high season (except Aladdin - which I think is every day but Mon/Tue). So if you go high season do not worry about being able to seeing shows. If you go during off or mid-season, and the DLR calendar is not yet telling you when the shows will be, you can usually count on Fri/Sat as having the shows and maybe Sunday. If you plan around that you can adjust when you find out the actual calendar dates. And FWIW, WDW has the same issues I believe - but I think they get their calendars out a little sooner than DLR.
     

    Yookeroo

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 16, 2001
    JayS said:
    The previous posters comments about the lack of water parks reminds me that Knott's Berry Farm (about a 15 minute drive from DLR) has a water park, Soak City. I have not been to that park, but for those looking to make DLR a weeklong vacation, it is close enough to consider a visit. Also, about an hour away in San Dimas, is Raging Waters. That is a fairly large water park, with enough for people of all ages. Be sure to find out what time they open and arrive early, as this is a popular destination for summer camps to bring busloads of kids for the day. I'm not sure about Soak City, but Raging Waters closes completely during the winter.
    There's also Wild Rivers in Irvine. Aout a half hour (or less) from Disneyland.
     
  • mommabo

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Nov 16, 2005
    With regard to Hydroguy's comments on transportation, I totally agree. Some friends just returned from WDW in May and their biggest complaint was the transportation. It wasn't just a slight annoyance for them, it really bothered them. It was to the point, they question whether they would return. We explained we did not have that experience while we were at WDW this last Jan for 10 days as we did not rely on Disney transportation. Instead, we rented a car and drove to the parks. We were always lucky with good to great parking spots and timing with the parking trams - we hardly ever wait and when we did it was very short time. The longest wait was MK monorail to the parking lots. In all honestly our travel time was half that of Hydroguys (20-30 min), but still significantly more than a 5-10 min walk from resort to room at DL.

    Yes, in WDW you experience a sort of Disney suspended reality while in the resort complex that you do not necessarily get at DLR. This includes dining, entertainment outside of parks like Hoop-de-doo and polynesian luau, waterparks, disney quest, etc. However, for us, these things are not necessarily that important to us. And I must add the we consider both WDW and DLR a family vacation. We are leaving in less than 2 weeks for our DLR vacation (on a MUCH smaller budget than WDW last Jan). Sure, we bulked up our vacation by including San Diego, but we also plan to return in October, Jan, and March with newly acquired AP's for mini-vacations.

    Admittedly, we are going a bit overboard with Disney trips right now, but I am trying to make hay while the sun shines. It won't be too much longer before the kids are older and won't be interested Disney. Who knows, after this next year, we can focus on other summer vacations like Alaska, Washington DC, and the real Hawaii rather than the Disneyfied version. Hey at girl can dream.
     

    deekaypee

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2006
    Wow--great post, hopefully one of many that continues to be tweaked as you see fit. I've been to both WDW and DLR and I found your post to be quite helpful and overall very accurate. Yes, it should be a sticky! I especially liked your comparisons between the two resorts--very objective, I thought.

    Also, for those wondering about Ridemax: I am using Ridemax for the first time and have found it very useful in planning for my upcoming trip. (19-25 July 2006!)
     

    HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    mikayla73 said:
    Great info! Is there one of these for DL to WDW? ;)
    I am going to take a cut at one here soon. But I am not the person to offer the kind of depth I did for DLR. What I put together will be more of an "intro to WDW for DLR vets" to get people pointed in the right direction.
     

    HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    HydroGuy said:
    Total Hours Inside Parks Over Whole Trip

    At DLR - 45 hrs over four days
    At WDW - 58 hrs over nine and a half days (for me)
    At WDW - 48.5 hrs over nine and a half days (for my kids)
    Ooops. I had miscalculation of sorts in Excel. My DS10 had 50 hours because he came with me to AK one day and stayed with me later at MGM on another. The other three older boys skipped these.

    So for DS10 it was 50 hours. For the other three it was 45 hours, the same as at DLR.
     
  • HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    OK, this topic of quantity got me thinking and I used my trip reports to determine how many rides and shows we did. The DLR count was easier because we were almost always together for everything, but at WDW we split up on numerous occasions. I know that I did more rides and shows than anyone else in my family because they either left early or did not come back out with me after a break on some days. I was in the parks for 9 out of 10 days, although on one day it was only for 1.5 hours in the evening to catch Wishes and SpectoMagic at MK.

    Rides

    At DLR over 4 days - 68 (for everyone)
    At WDW over 10 days - 68 (for me)
    At WDW over 10 days - 66 (for DS10)
    At WDW over 10 days - 59 (for three older boys)


    Shows, Dinner Shows, Parades and Fireworks

    At DLR over 4 days - 7 (for everyone)
    At WDW over 10 days - 13 (for me)
    At WDW over 10 days - 12 (for DS10)
    At WDW over 10 days - 10 (for three older boys)


    Overall we did less rides as a family over 10 days at WDW than we did at DLR in 4 days, but we saw many more shows. This counts the Hoop-De-Doo Revue which is a Disney show but outside the parks.

    As mentioned earlier, we also did things at WDW like DisneyQuest, Downtown Disney (the boys saw movies there on rest days, which was a good use of time for them and helped them conserve energy), watercraft, horseback riding, water pageant, and a water park on one afternoon.

    I am not saying that "DLR let's you do more". But it is interesting how many more rides we were able to do at DLR. We got a more diverse experience at WDW because of the four parks and outside activities.
     

    mikayla73

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2006
    HydroGuy said:
    I am going to take a cut at one here soon. But I am not the person to offer the kind of depth I did for DLR. What I put together will be more of an "intro to WDW for DLR vets" to get people pointed in the right direction.
    A DLR beginners guide to WDW would be great. :thumbsup2 We have not been to WDW ... yet, we plan on going next year :woohoo: DH was born and raised in So Cal and I fell in love after our frist trip. We have talked about going to WDW, but end up at DL everytime, we just can't pass up So Cal :love:

    For our DL vacations, we go to the parks everyday, but also incorporate other aspects into our trip. DH is an Angels fan, which is practically right down the street from DL,so a game or two is always a must. We always have to go to Charlies Chili and spend at least one day at Newport Beach. In general we go to So Cal with a general idea of the things we want to do/see and do what we feel like whenever.

    It doesn't seem like that is as easy at WDW if there are things you want to see/do. Planning out what you want to se/do and when, seems like it would allow you to make the most of your vacations there. Since we are now DVC members :dance3: we will be definately be going to WDW more than before, so the more we go, the more experience we will have on making the best of our time there. Obvioulsly me finding these boards will be a HUGE help! :yay: DH already thinks I am "vacation crazy" :crazy: But he sure is glad when I know what is going on! :rotfl:
     

    Disney Magic

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 22, 2006
    HydroGuy, Thanks for your explanation, but I really wasn't questioning the fact that one can spend more time in the parks at DLR than at WDW. One can spent more time in the parks at DLR than at WDW because of the proximity of the parks and hotels (similar to the Universal Complex in Orlando). There is no disputing that fact. I just stated that the only portion of your post, as a WDW vacationer, that I couldn't relate to is the fact that one can spend 50% more time in the parks at DLR. I said "relate to" because, although it does take more time go get to the parks, in all our time going to WDW and doing some "commando style days", I can't say we ever experienced 50% less time at the parks in WDW than we did at either DLR or Universal Orlando, where everything is within walking distance of each other. We try to take advantage of the extra night hours at the parks that are offered to park guests at WDW, so that always extends our park time.

    But, when we take time for recreational activities, water parks, night clubs, resort hopping, etc., during our park day, then yes, I can say that we do spend 50% less time in the parks......we love those activities and they are an integral part of our vacation.

    It was an interesting read, but you really didn't have to go through the trouble to do your calculations to reply to me (are you a statistician?). I think your guide will be very helpful to first-time visitors to DL. I also think you are approaching the guide quite logically and fairly. In your response you had mentioned some things that frustrated you about WDW because it was different from what you experience at DL, but hopefully your guide will prepare WDW vets to "know before they go" so they can better manage their DL expectations.

    I must say that I didn't do that much homework before our family went to DL, and because of that there were things that were frustrating to us because of our expectations, but that didn't stop us from having a wonderful time. Disney just never disappoints. I recently had a business trip to France, so my DH and our DDs joined me and we took time to spend a day at DLP. We had a wonderful time there, too, but I wish I had a "quick reference" guide for DLP. Are you considering doing one of those as well?
     

    HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    Disney Magic said:
    It was an interesting read, but you really didn't have to go through the trouble to do your calculations to reply to me (are you a statistician?). I think your guide will be very helpful to first-time visitors to DL. I also think you are approaching the guide quite logically and fairly. In your response you had mentioned some things that frustrated you about WDW because it was different from what you experience at DL, but hopefully your guide will prepare WDW vets to "know before they go" so they can better manage their DL expectations.
    Frankly, I was surprised by the results I came up with. But up to this point, I was going by gut feel and not by any hard comparisons. So I am glad I put this together. For me it more than confirmed my gut feel. In fact, I was shocked to learn we did less rides at WDW. And no, I am not a statistician. Worse. I am an engineer. Although I have a strong analytical bent (that obvious, huh?), I also have a strong creative bent which is why I appreciate the Disney magic.

    I think we are agreeing here about park hours. My point was not that it is impossible to spend as many hours at parks at WDW as DLR. It is just that the way WDW is set up makes it more difficult and, from our and others' experience, unlikely. We did not go to WDW with the idea that we would spend less hours at parks. We went to enjoy the parks the way do at DLR, and also experience some things outside the parks. The way things naturally fell out was a lot less park hours. Since I was trying to generalize in my guide, I do think it is fair statement to WDW vets to expect that they will spend more hours inside parks at DLR than at WDW.

    Regarding potential WDW frustration, I think you understood that I was not frustrated with WDW. But if I had not done any research I would have been. I was mentally prepared for all the park access issues, and surmised ahead of time that we would spend less time at parks and have an overall more leisurely experience. I want to go back - but not for 10 days. Maybe 6 days next time.

    Thanks again for your feedback.
     

    ExPirateShopGirl

    <font color=blue>My posts are sanitized for your p
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2005
    HydroGuy! You're my new favorite Disboards Poster! What a great post! As a lifetime DLR veteran (3-4 times a year growing up, and worked there in college - see also screen name! ;) ) and a recent convert to WDW (our 3rd trip in less than a year/ever) you are right on in your assessment!

    If I hadn't bought every Unofficial Guide since 1999 and found the Disboards and Mousesavers, my experience at DLR would have left me ill-prepared for WDW. By the same token, I can see how WDW veterans would be stymied by the experience of DLR.

    I really liked your comparison of the rides/attractions available at both resorts. Not only thorough, but entirely accurate. I was appalled to learn there was no Matterhorn at MK! :rotfl: The Indiana Jones ride at DLR is mechanically identical to the Dino Institute (sorry, don't recall the proper name) ride at AK, but the theming inside is just so much more amazing at Indiana Jones, it would be difficult to truly call them the 'same' ride.

    Some of the other ride differences have to do with the number of drops in the rides, like POTC and HM, where space contraints forced Disney to put the rides underground. It does make for a better 'ride' experience, even if POTC does have an 'extra' scene at the end (the shopkeeper tied up by pirates) at MK.

    As far as It's a Small World, I think the biggest difference between the two lies in the ride entrance presentation, which is far better at DLR. It's almost an attraction in itself, as the entire facade becomes a gigantic cuckoo clock at the top and quarters of each hour and animatronic presentations whir into action. This is in addition to the most amazing circus-animal topiaries which reside in the manicured lawn area below the facade. It truly is a sight!

    I am just amazed at the amount of information in your post. What a treat to read... and I didn't even need info on DLR! I agree it needs to be a sticky! Thank you!

    :thumbsup2
     

    MouseDogMom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 25, 2005
    HydroGuy - I'm so glad you sent me over here! What an amazing post - and absolutely full of useful information. As a WDW vet leaving in 4 days for DLR, I'll probably print it out to read on the plane just to be sure I remember everything! It's very reassuring to know that we'll be able to do what we need in 1-2 days - we're only targeting hitting the things that WDW doesn't have or that are better at DLR, and you've made that list very clear.

    For DLR vets who haven't been to WDW yet, it does seem that planning is much more critical for WDW trips. Because of the size, more dining options, more recreation options, you really have to know what you want to do before you get there. That being said, you also have to allow time for unplanned things too - some of those times have been our best memories.

    I'll check back in after we get back!
     

    Emmo

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2006
    Thank you from a person from the UK who finds it hard to get DLR info. WDW info is on tap yet its tough if you wanna go to DLR.
    We have only been to WDW 3 times but we love it there and we are really looking forward to DLR.

    Thank you again :thumbsup2
     

    Disney Magic

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 22, 2006
    The funny thing is that WDW vets just accept this as part of WDW, and IMO do not understand the advantages of the close locations at DLR. So when the snobby ones talk about WDW being "way better" than DLR, they really do not know what they are talking about. All they (the snobby ones) can seem to think about is less parks, smaller space, less hotels, etc. How about more numerous rides inside each park at DLR vs. WDW, and vastly more convenient access and hence more time inside the parks?

    Oh my gosh, HygroGuy. I hope you weren't referring to me as one of the "snobby ones". I'm no sure what you meant by that comment.
     

    HydroGuy

    A Pirate's Life For Me
    Joined
    Jun 5, 2005
    Disney Magic said:
    The funny thing is that WDW vets just accept this as part of WDW, and IMO do not understand the advantages of the close locations at DLR. So when the snobby ones talk about WDW being "way better" than DLR, they really do not know what they are talking about. All they (the snobby ones) can seem to think about is less parks, smaller space, less hotels, etc. How about more numerous rides inside each park at DLR vs. WDW, and vastly more convenient access and hence more time inside the parks?

    Oh my gosh, HygroGuy. I hope you weren't referring to me as one of the "snobby ones". I'm no sure what you meant by that comment.
    No, not you! I made this post on another DLR forum, and noticed you over there too. In fact I was a little concerned you might see my response and think I was talking about you. So my concern was justified, it would seem. ;)

    There was another post I saw today on another forum that said something like "WDW is far better than DLR". I had to go find it. Here it is, post #4: http://www.micechat.com/forums/showthread.php?p=768955 . I replied in post #7. His post was what set me off, so to speak, in a whole other thread on a whole other forum.

    If someone prefers WDW to DLR, that is fine by me. But to come out and say point blank "WDW is better" is just too close minded - and snobbish. If a person has honestly given both parks a fair chance says "I prefer the type of experience at WDW to that at DLR", then I would not call that snobbish. It is just their preference. And you are probably in this boat.

    Since I doubt we will ever treat a Disney destination - either WDW or DLR - as a whole vacation experience, then I doubt WDW's strengths will ever outweigh DLR's for me. They will just remain different destinations with different things to do. And since we can do DLR much more cost effectively since we drive to California once or twice a year, DLR will be our preferred destination if for no other reason than ecomomics. I guess weather would be another one that makes me prefer DLR.

    But I would not go out and say "DLR is way better than WDW". Because I do not think it is. As we have been discussing, they have different strengths. I hope to go back to WDW some day - I am secretly hoping we can do it during Spring Break in 2008. But we'll see.

    I hope we are still friends. :)

    BTW, to get some more insight into how DLR vets think, read further into the thread for a post from a guy named Pisces. I and Pisces have corresponded in the past. Basically, he thinks he should skip WDW just because of the transportation issues and because the resort is too spread out.
     

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