An Engaging and Magical Asian Adventure - Update 2/11 Shanghai

Discussion in 'Other Lands' started by Flossbolna, Aug 2, 2018.

  1. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    We knew to expect the pushing beforehand. That's what happens in a country that has so many people and increasingly less space. I think having the right expectations helped us deal with it.

    Tron is fun - if it were just a bit longer!
     
  2. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Hi!! Great to have you here! :welcome: to our trip report! I think you are right about the castle, there is a certain similarity.
     
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  4. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    You are an experienced TR reader and can see the clues!!

    I am refusing to go on Buzz at WDW. At least DLP and DL have the removable guns. At WDW with the stationary guns I just have no idea what I am doing.

    Exactly! I am sure you having a bunch of kids propably added to the attraction, too?

    The locker situation was unpleasant, but I think to some degree this was made worse with not knowing where to go. I think this might have been the only time when I felt a language barrier. In any other park I would have found it easier to just ask and be less flustered by it.

    It is a very cute coaster! And we would have loved a second spin on it...

    Never thought about it, but yes!

    You could tell that there were quite a lot of differences between Chinese and Chinese visitors, depending on where they were from. I got the impression that this is much more a "country" thing to do and those living in the big cities, especially the newly emerging middle class, would not be caught dead doing this. Maybe I should add some more about this in an upcoming update (I think we will do some kind of SDL summary of impressions at the end of that part of the trip report before moving on to Japan, might fit in there).
     
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  5. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Thank you! And :welcome: to our trip report! Looking forward to your comments, but I do understand that time is limited, I often have trouble getting around to comment on the trip reports that I am reading. As a writer I know how nice it is to hear from those who are reading though, even if it is just a little note!
     
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  6. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Part 2: Finding a surprising gem

    Our next stop was supposed to be lunch. We were thinking about trying the Wandering Moon Restaurant.

    But first another perspective of the castle:

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    This might be my favorite angle of it because it makes it look less boxy.

    The Wandering Moon Teahouse Restaurant is a counter service selling Chinese food. We had seen it the evening before and thought it looked lovely.

    It has plenty of historic Chinese decorations and architecture. This is the entrance:

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    Well, unfortunately the line was out of the door and you could see it was crowded. So all we did was take a couple more pictures of the restaurant:

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    And yes, it was really crowded! A family had decided to camp out on those stairs that were for decorator purposes only, as you can see in a closer picture:

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    Somehow there was nothing close by besides Remy’s Bistro on our way to the bus stop for our hotel which is where we were headed after lunch. So, we decided to try our luck at Disney town for some lunch. Disneytown is similar to Downtown Disney at Disneyland in that it is a shopping district next to the park. It is so next to the park that there is actually an entrance/exit between Mickey Avenue and Tomorrowland to get there. So, this is where we were heading now, passing some balloons on Mickey Avenue:

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    And some more fun buildings from Mickey Avenue:

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    Do you spot the 33 in this picture?

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    Yes, this is the entrance to Shanghai’s Club 33.

    Where we will be dining on our next visit. We were supposed to score a meal here on this trip due to a friend I have worked with before. Unfortunately, something got lost in the translation regarding our dates. It wound up not happening, but I have been told this won't repeat itself. IF WE COULD JUST GET BACK!!! ... BTW, I have to say that maybe it was the heat or the jet lag or the excitement of being in a totally new Disney Park, but food was not something we seemed all that concerned with. Yes, shocking, I know. It will change as we move on to Tokyo (should I have included a spoiler alert?).

    I remember that we discussed this during our time there how we were really not taking advantage of all the food offerings the park had. Ultimately it was a question of priorities. With the crowds, seeing the attractions that we wanted to see and enjoy the theming was taking a lot of time, so some things had to be cut from our wish list. And as interesting Disney food might be, attractions and just exploring the design of a new park beat any special snack. We did a bit better in Tokyo, but considering how those parks are snack haven, we really did not snack nearly as much as it seems others do (but there was another reason for that - but an actually really nice one!!).

    We had looked at menus and thought about trying the Shanghai version of Wolfgang Puck:

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    But, to our shock Disneytown was hopping with people as well. We had heard beforehand that it is usually dead during the day and a great place for lunch. Not during peak season. We were quoted at least a 20 minutes wait at Wolfgang Puck. So, besides all those people packing their lunch from home and eating it in line to safe money and time, there were still plenty of locals who were able to afford a nice sit down meal at Wolfgang Puck at prices that were only slightly below what you would pay at WDW’s Wolfgang Puck.

    The menu looked quite good. Typical Puck California cuisine with a half dozen local dishes thrown in. But it just seemed clear this was going to take too much time. The Cheesecake Factory has their first Chinese location here as well and it looked packed.

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    At this point we decided that we should just head back to the hotel and grab something to eat there. So, we walked through Disneytown towards the bus stops.

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    I thought it was neat that all the houses had the numbers of the year they were built in on them and all those years where years that are important in Disney history like 1901, 1955 etc.

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    One shop then caught our eye despite it’s very understated sign:

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    ACME – a name that might be familiar to you from Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

    This was the Shanghai version of the Disney gallery. And it blew away all other versions that I have seen. This had some serious collectibles. Unfortunately, they had a strict no pictures policy inside, so I can’t show you. But everyone going to Shanghai interested in Disney art should have a look. They did sell some really cute post cards and we got a couple of those. The rest was far out of our price range.

    Yes, for all the 'good' Disney bloggers do, they have blind spots. It was very obvious to me that 99% of them had never set foot in Disneytown or knew places like this existed. I didn't know until we walked in.

    Most of Disneytown’s hop are real retail shops like the modern Disney Springs. But quite a few had Disney licensed products. For example I really loved this necklace:

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    (That’s about 100 $).

    Overall this area is really nice, just like refurbished Disney Springs is really nice.

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    I am not sure how well it will work year round as most reports that I had heard before our trip was that it was mainly empty. But the area that Shanghai Disneyland is in is being developed as a general recreation area, there are is a park, a nature reserve. Some of it is still being built, but all in all the idea is to provide an area for the people of Shanghai to go for a day trip for various reasons. So this might create more interest in Disneytown in the future.

    It is doing quite well, with a few exceptions. The Disney owned candy and goodies shop (think it was called A Spoonful of Sugar) shuttered within a year. They are getting rid of some merchandise right here in the swamps at the WDW outlet in my local mall. They also got in yet another HUGE supply of Grand Opening pins they are literally begging people to tale at 99 cents each (these are the same 15 or so designs that say 'Limited Release' on them and have been regularly arriving since March.) ... Anyway, there is one section of Disneytown that is on Inspiration Lake and it was troubled when we were there. The Boathouse (see a future update) was located there. It has since closed. I am not sure what replaced it. The design of this section is problematic as everyone heads toward where the SDL entrance is and where SDL's World of Disney and Starbucks are located. But more on this in future update.

    So, once back at the hotel, our first stop was at the Sunnyside Market which is a mix of a convenience store and counter service restaurant. It is rather tiny, but it was also absolutely empty. The only downside was that we realised that it mainly had the same offerings as Remy’s Bistro last night. It seems that the same central location brings food to both these places. It all looked very tasty though!

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    We were intrigued by the Chinese chips flavors:

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    Michael got an Australian Beef Pie:

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    as well as a mixed nut muffin:

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    I got a Pork Puff Pastry:

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    As well as warm Caramel Pudding Buns:

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    I absolutely loved my lunch. The pastry was delicious and the pork filling had plenty of interesting spices. Those buns were to die for!

    As a drink I got an Iced Plum Tea thanks to Michael’s recommendation:

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    This was excellent. Don’t look at how much sugar it contains though… Actually, all the restaurants had at least a couple of different tea choices that seemed to vary from place to place. If I had figured that out earlier, I might have had more. It seemed that in China those were often rather sweet.

    My one regret is that I never bought one of those marshmallow lollipops.

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    My sister Katharina (@nodnol) and I started a tradition of getting chocolate covered marshmallow treats on our first visit to Disneyland Paris together in 1995. And if she is not part of my travels, I would bring her one from the Disney park I just visited. Those versions here looked really cute. But I did not want to travel for another two weeks through Asia in summer with something chocolate in my luggage. So, I just hope they still have them on my next visit to Shanghai, which will not be in the summer!!

    They were offering a special drink at the Sunnyside Market:

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    I thought it was quite fitting!

    Didn't I have a cookie? An amazing cookie that literally was the best Disney cookie I ever had globally?!?!? (I can't see M's pics without clicking on them individually here, so it may well be above. In that case, nevermind. If not, how did you not photograph that amazing cookie. I would divorce you for a second one!!!)

    After lunch we headed back to our room:

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    And then relaxed in the lovely air conditioning and took much needed showers. It had been unbearable hot that day. In my trip notes I mad a point of writing down that it was so hot that I started to sweat in my knee pit and the sweat then was running down over my calf. Not pleasant!!

    No, but by this point we were sorta used to it and running on adrenaline and totally loving this new park. Spoiler alert: that won't change!!!

    Up next: Trying to squeeze as much out of our last hours at SDL as possible
     
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  7. Steppesister

    Steppesister DIS Veteran

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    That is absolutely GORGEOUS!!! WOW!

    Truly quite lovely. I wish you'd gotten to eat here.

    How pretty, but how odd. Just. Odd.

    Another lovely shot there. I love this one.

    I see, I see!!!


    Well pooperoo in a big way. Sorry this fell through!

    That's pretty cool. I think I read somewhere, possibly the Imagineers Guide to the Parks series that the addresses from Liberty Square through Frontierland also ascend numerically with regards to the style that the store front would have been built.

    I don't blame you one bit! Yuck!

    Okay, that's hot. Uncomfortably so. Ew!
     
  8. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Yes, for me saying that I don't like the castle, I did get some good pictures of it! And I think this was one of the best views. But I just started sorting the pictures for Tokyo and have such a hard time limiting them. Nearly every shot there is beautiful. Those parks are just so photogenic!

    We did not even get a look inside. I remember this from the D23 exhibition (which they then moved in parts to the China pavilion at Epcot, I wonder whether it is still there...) and I really wanted to check it out.

    The picture with the balloons is Michael's favorite from the whole trip. I made him a calendar for 2018 with pictures from this trip and this was the title picture. We are planning on making a photo book as well (we did one for previous trips) and I know that it will be on the title, too.

    Interesting! I need to look out for this!

    Hope Orlando won't be that hot for you! It's still the humid season there, too...
     
  9. Nora03

    Nora03 Mouseketeer

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    I’m really enjoying your trip report. Thanks for sharing so many little details. I don’t think I could handle the crowds though. On our last trip to WDW we had to leave the Magic Kingdom quickly as it was so crowded. We had dinner at the Beast’s castle and left as more crowds were pouring in, missing the fireworks. However we made up for it by having dinner one night at California Grill and watching the fireworks from there. You and Michael are such good writers and I appreciate your descriptions of everything. Sounds like you plan to return. You are fortunate that you have something you both love.
     
  10. Captain_Oblivious

    Captain_Oblivious DIS Dad #257

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    Yikes. That sounds like an ordeal!

    party::jumping1:

    I don't blame you there. I'd be frustrated, too.

    Glad someone could help you out!

    But...but...:sad1:

    I've watched it on Youtube, and the ride itself looks fast with lots of cool effects. But I did get the sense that it was pretty short, which is disappointing.

    That stinks. The light cycles were always the coolest part of the movies. I still look forward to trying this in WDW.

    Two excellent themes to combine!

    Yikes. This feels like a culture shock just reading about it.

    Even worse!! :scared1:

    I've always enjoyed stunt shows. This sounds pretty cool.

    Nice photo! I like that one a lot.

    Well, now you have a reason to return.

    That makes sense. I would prioritize the rides, too.

    And Looney Tunes!

    I think Julie would fall in love with this if she saw it.

    Yeah...in this case, it's the thought that counts.
     
  11. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    I totally understand what you are saying about crowds. That's why we missed the nighttime show. I think we would have just been miserable. Unfortunately not California Grill for a relaxed view in Shanghai!

    I am happy to hear that you enjoy the details! I sometimes wonder if I am writing too much for these reports - that's why they take so long to produce. But then I enjoy reliving the vacation myself!
     
  12. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    They now have a special entrance in Disney Town in the mornings for hotel guests and I think that that is so smart to offer as a perk!

    Yes, the CMs were all really friendly!

    I felt so sorry about no pictures for you, but then I read your next comment...

    It really should have been longer... I wish they would add some elements for WDW, but I don't expect them to.

    I think it will be really popular there. But it will have the same issues as the Flight of Passage with passengers of size. One or two trains do have one normal roller coaster car at the end in Shanghai. But the population there is slimmer than the people walking around WDW.

    Actually, DLP's Adventureland as a lot of African influences as well and I love it for that!

    I think it sounds worse when you read about it, but when it happens it is just something you see and wonder. And then you move on and watch a great stunt show.

    Indeed...

    I think for anyone who likes stunt shows, this would be a must do. It is really cool!

    Thanks! I have about four similar ones as I was playing around, but am really happy with this one. It was a candidate for Micheal's calendar, but the pictures for that needed to be resized to square pictures and this one did not work in that format.

    One of many!

    :thumbsup2

    Yes! I looked it up and people say that ACME stands for American Company that Manufactures Everything. :rotfl2:

    There is quite an element of regret that I did not get it for myself... It would have been a perfect souvenir. But I did not want to blow the souvenir budget on the first couple of days (and I ended up getting plenty of really nice things!).

    :thumbsup2 She did not complain too much about the things that she got instead...
     
  13. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Part 3: Trying to squeeze as much out of our last hours at SDL as possible

    At around 4 p.m. we headed back to the park and were not too sad that the sun had disappeared.

    It was still hot as hell and sticky and icky, but, hey, we were experiencing the magic, new magic and we were in love and you and naive and ... we still wouldn't have fit in in say ... Delaware.

    I really like the Steamboat Mickey fountain:

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    At the entrance we had a quick look into guest services and were amused by some of the signs that taught you how to be a star guest!

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    Well, it seems like the signs were not as successful as hoped if you remember our previous experiences.

    And yes, this is a rare Michael sighting – he is exhibiting a perfect Disney two finger point here!

    No pics is the rule, unless you want a single finger salute. My beauty transcends photography and can't be captured by a camera ... or worse, a phone!

    Under the fake train station you do find real attraction posters though for the Shanghai attractions. They are really nice and unique!

    I love poster art. I have some framed here in the Florida house. I am also buying the poster art calendars they have been putting out for 3-4 years as soon as they hit the outlets (often when they are still $22 in the parks, they are $5 at the outlets). And I so wish they had offered this stuff for sale in some form ...


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    Another picture trying to show the scale of Mickey Avenue:

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    This picture is taken from where you come out under the train station. On the left hand side you can see that it ends with a tall cream colored building. This is the Carthay Circle Theater that you see at Disney California Adventure and you saw it earlier in the picture with the balloons. So the left side of the picture is the full lengthy of Mickey Avenue.

    I told you about the cut and paste approach of much of the park. Here, they took the Carthay Circle models from DHS and DCA and built this facade.

    It may be short, but it is also very sweet and every time you pass through, there is more to take not of:

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    The last picture is actually from where you turn right at the end of Mickey Avenue as the decorations continue along the “hub” a bit (just like on Main Street) and there is a large counter service restaurant called Mickey & Pals Market Café.
    The place we never even walked in, sadly.

    The one thing that totally baffled me about Adventure Isle is that they built a canoe ride there! I know the Disneyland purists love that ride, but I am with my sister (the marshmallow tradition one) who said in 1992 on our first ever Disney park visit to Disneyland that she thinks Disney is a really smart company that it can convince people to pay good money for a theme park and then have them sit in a canoe in the blazing sun working hard. If she had just known then what Disney could get people to pay good money for… And yes, neither she nor I have ever been on a Disney canoe.

    I was a bit surprised by this, being that they have removed the ride from Florida and Paris. Only Anaheim and Tokyo still have them. ... Of course, look at the typical FL guest and try to picture them doing anything physical beyond lifting a turkey leg or burger to their mouths!

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    This is the entrance to the canoes:

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    (taken a bit later, the canoes close at sunset)

    Our destination was now the Camp Discovery Challenge Trails. This is a very unique attraction as you get into a harness and then can go on a rope course. Every report we had from the park was raving about this attraction. Unfortunately, it does not have Fastpass, it is out in the sun and had really long lines. And it closes at 6 p.m. due to sunset. So, our plan was to get on it just before it closed down. When we got there, we thought we still had some time, so we looked around a bit. The whole are is really cute and has lots of theming.

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    I was amused by this sign:

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    The guy’s name “Auchsindfrei” is actually three German words: Auch sind frei. And it means “we (or they) are free, too.” The profession underneath tells us that he is a cartographer.

    If you are familiar with other Disney parks, these stories in that old newspaper stuck there might be familiar:

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    We saw some cave drawings of a large crocodile that is rumored to attack people traveling on the river in this area:

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    We watched other people on the rope course:

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    Looks like there might have been a temple of some kind:

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    So, after looking around a little we decided to get in line for the lockers (yes, another must have a locker attraction). But then we were told that the locker line was already closed!! We were really devastated that we were so stupid to miss out on the attraction that we really wanted to do just because we had looked around at nice but not overly exciting stuff. Well, we then were also informed that we would not have been able to go on the attraction anyway because Michael was not wearing closed shoes, but sandals. I had known about this requirement, but totally forgot about it when Michael decided to wear sandals.

    I guess if you are operating under jet lag, too little sleep and too much heat and humidity, some things will just slip your mind.

    This is easily the biggest disappointment of the visit. I was told by multiple people that this was a can't miss attraction. We purposely kept it for Day 2 due to our jetlag, the lines and the heat on Day 1. I never thought about wearing the sandals as an issue. This attraction actually has three different courses that are of varying levels of difficulty. One of them (I think the blue trail) was closed when we were there and is often closed. This attraction idea was originally conceived of in 2007-08 when WDW was planning a boutique animal park experience near DAK. This eventually was canceled and you see traces of it in the Wild Africa Trek (that M and I did in 2013 on our first real trip together). Anyway, this attraction can be quite scary and requires some degree of physical fitness and mental health. In other words, don't ever expect anything like this in the USA!


    We were really bummed for about five minutes, then decided that this will be just the thing to make us plan a return trip sometime soonish. And then went off to do some shopping. The shop in Adventure Isle was not very large but had some of the most interesting merchandise. I got a lovely key chain and Michael a really nice t-shirt. And we would have been able to find a bit more even there.

    A tee that he is wearing right now on the sofa as he types these comments on a typically wretched summer day in the swamps. Why do people come here this time of year? What kind of insane person would go to WDW in these conditions? ... Wait, ah ... I have a reservation? Starting Sunday? At WDW?!?!? ... Um ... ah ... yeah ... never mind! (He wrote those comments some days ago and he is actually back by now and did survive and had a great time, mainly because the weather reminded him of our lovely time at Shanghai! :rotfl:)

    I think this might also have been the time when we ended up getting a snack: Some bubble tea with Mickey head shaped bubbles. My trip notes say that we did get it sometime during that day and I have only a faint memory of it being tasty. Yes, I know, I should be able to show you a picture, but my excuse it that it was hot and that we were jet lagged and therefore just drank our bubble teas!

    Yes, we got some at a snack stand in Adventure Isle. It was really good. And now, you let down the 6,786,543 people reading this report worldwide. How does that make you feel?

    Talking about snacks: One thing I noticed and which I thought was really smart was that all ice cream bars where sold with a little tray. So, you could old this under the bar and catch anything dripping down. This certainly helped keeping lines clean as a lot of kids brought the ice cream into the line and ate it while waiting. And I have to admit that I had instances of larges pieces of chocolate breaking off from my Mickey bar and falling on the floor to my dismay. The tray would have been perfect in those situations!

    I don't think we snacked enough!


    We also figured that timing was perfect for a showing of Tarzan, the big show they have in Adventure Isle.


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    This show is quite spectacular. It is a retelling of the movie and has a lot of Chinese acrobatics in it.

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    It is very unique and definitely one of those attractions that live up to the slogan of “authentically Disney, distinctly Chinese”.

    Yes, this show doesn't get much love from those bloggers (like my pal, Disney Blogger to the Stars, Tom Bricker), but really is spectacular. Yes, it's in Mandarin. But if you've seen the film, you understand the characters and the plot and the music ... and those acrobats are world class, not typical theme park entertainment. I highly recommend seeing this. We saw every live show regularly scheduled except the Frozen sing along because ... why. It was also cold and dark inside! Like my soul ...

    After this we had a stop at the Soaring Over the Horizon bathrooms where I admired these beautiful tiles:

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    This is kind of a clue as to the theme being quite different from Epcot and DCA! More to come on this.

    Now we were only missing one Shanghai exclusive attraction on our list of things to do: Voyage to the Crystal Grotto.

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    This is a boat ride through lovely scenes from various Disney movies (maybe all princess movies?).
    No, Fantasia is in it ... Aladdin isn't really a princess film ... same with Mulan ... (well, both Jasmine and Mulan are officially inducted into the Disney Princesses Court, but I guess Michael is not too familiar with the topic). It has some kind of back story about a boy and a grotto full of crystals. And I think in the end you go underneath the castle and end up in that grotto. I am sorry that I can’t explain the back story any better, maybe Michael can? Nope, he can't. You got most of it. Ultimately it is a ride through Disney movies to introduce you to the films. But it is another unique attraction and someone we know was involved with this ride.

    Same guy who did the amazing effect for the Pirate stunt show also was contracted to do the fountains for this. I had the blueprints of this attraction in 2012 when fans were talking about it being an E-Ticket. It is a C at best and is sorta a cross between Storybook Land at DL (or DLP) with the Jungle Cruise boats with the static figures that used to populate Disney Stores in the 1990s with fountains and music. You may think I am kidding, but I just described Crystal Grotto perfectly.

    The issue with this was that it constantly had long waits and it closed early, before the evening castle show as the waterways were so close to the castle. I took a picture of the show viewing area before we got in line:

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    So, it was not an option for our late night strategy. It was going to close at 8p.m. and we got in line at around 7:50. By then the lines had died down a bit, the posted wait was 75 minutes. Luckily it was a bit less and we waited for “only” 50 minutes for it. About half way through the wait the lady in front of us started talking to us (after she had listened to our chatter for 25 minutes or so). It turned out that she had been to college in Chicago and then continued living there. After seven years in the US she had recently returned to Shanghai to take care of her parents. It was really interesting to talk to her and you could tell that she was happy to speak English again.

    She was behind us, not in front, but ... very nice. I was going to exchange emails with her when we exited, but she took off quickly.

    There were some pictures with regard to the backstory in the line:

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    But otherwise it was mainly again open air, but covered, switch backs with nothing special to see and densely packed people. I think we saw another peeing incident here.

    Yes, we did. It was in front of us and about 12 minutes before boarding. The corner should have been named Urine Falls. It clearly is a location where bladders give out and people have no idea how long the wait is in front of them. Disney is partially responsible for this.

    One thing which I found interesting was the emergency exit system they have in China. Instead of overhead signs, there were loads of green arrows on the ground telling you which way to move to the nearest emergency exist.

    And then it was finally time for us to enter our boat! The boats are nearly identical to the Jungle Cruise boats, just differently decorated. And the roof is different. It is a hard roof that opens up at the entrances and inside it has a lit up pattern:

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    That’s just where I was sitting in the boat looking up towards the roof. Prettier than the Jungle Cruise!!

    By the time we were on the ride it was dark and the little scenes were nicely lit. The figures moved a bit, they were not animatronic, but would turn and such. There also were some fountains involved. The whole thing was always set to music from the specific film. I tried my best to get some pictures:

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    It reminded me very much of rides that I had experienced in German amusement parks in the past, but this version was definitely bigger and more intricate. Actually Europapark, the biggest German theme park and Europe’s #2 behind DLP has the old fashioned version still and I have to admit that I liked their version a bit better. But that might be because when we were there this summer we had no wait and the much smaller boat to our selves.

    So, you might guess they verdict is that it is not worth a 75 minute wait, nor a 50 minute wait. Maybe 20 minutes. But I know that if we had not made a point of seeing it, we would have felt that we missed out on something, so no regrets there!

    Agreed. Long, boring, tight queue. Never will wait more than 20 minutes again.

    By the time we got off it was nearly time for the evening show and we decided to just not bother again. Instead we repeated Peter Pan with a 10 minute wait and then headed over to the Hunny Pot Spin. It’s the Tea Cups, but with a Winnie the Pooh theme. While those are just a spinner, they are really cute:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Next stop: Pirates. There we waited 10 minutes in the regular line and then asked for seats in the front row of the boat. Which we got and I have to say that this really elevated the experience even more! I liked having experienced from different positions in the boat and you do notice different things as your position changes and your timing to effect is different. But front row truly was so immersive! I was really happy that we managed to ride it again. If you go to SDL plan on wanting to ride this ride multiple times!!

    continued in next post
     
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  14. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2006
    Messages:
    12,242
    We had one last attraction on our list that was somewhat specific to Shanghai: Soaring Over the Horizon.

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    This is Soarin’ over the World. It had its debut here in Shanghai before it came to Florida and California. But we had both experienced the new film already by then in the US. We were actually more interested in the whole setting of the ride here. The story is quite different as you are in Adventure Isle and enter a large cave like setting. The line goes through a large hall with the “open night sky” – there are also some games you can play on the night sky it seems.

    [​IMG]

    The sky looks very much like the real thing…

    Then you end up being introduced to a shaman of an ancient tribe that will share with you their gift of being able to fly.

    We got in line at 9.35pm and the posted wait time was 90 minutes. We were counting on this being not the true wait time as we planned to grab another dinner at Remy’s Bistro. You might have noticed that we still had not eaten once again. The park closed at 10 pm, Remy’s Bistro at 11 pm. 90 minutes from 9:35pm would mean 11:05pm. And no dinner. Luckily our wait ended up being about 45 minutes only!

    This, much like Pooh (which we rode) and SDMT (which we didn't), this was on our skip list for attractions. But when we got near closing and saw the wait and remembered how we got on Roaring Rapids the night before in under 10 minutes, we thought it worth trying. ... I will also say that SDL is laid out horribly. I don't think I have ever walked as much in a day in a castle park. You always criss cross the park. And because of the large walkways and expansion pads, everything is so far away from each other. I didn't feel like attempting to walk all the way back to Tomorrowland to attempt Tron again (although in hindsight, this would have been better). And I don't like the attraction. I loved the original dating back to its 2001 debut at DCA. But this film looks so fake (because so much is). It just doesn't do much for me. I also had been on it probably 20 times between Anaheim and Orlando before we rode in Shanghai. I would definitely skip this in SDL despite a nicer queue and unique preshow.

    We soared around the world and over the horizon and in the end we flew over the skyline of Shanghai. Stupid me was disappointed that we did not end at SDL, but then the ride opened with the park and obviously had to be filmed before then…

    We got off the ride with plenty of time to get some food and picked up some stuff at Remy’s Bistro. They do have bags there and we got it all to go. We also did a little more browsing and then it was the sad moment to leave the park:

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    [​IMG]

    But it wasn’t the end of our fun in Shanghai – we will add a little recap of our visit to Shanghai before we move on to the next part of the trip, which won’t be for another day.

    We then took the bus back to the resort and had a little picnic at our table in our room:

    [​IMG]

    We had picked a turkey sandwich and a little tart (I think it was spinach) and shared both. Here you see the whole sandwich and half a tart.

    I had also picked this tiger tail:

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    I thought it was a pastry, but it was actually just a plain tasting bun. Nicer to look at than to taste. I think this was the only food I had in Shanghai that I did not particular like.

    Michael chose better. This is the one and only and most famous Salted Caramel Cookie:

    [​IMG]

    I think my husband would be ready to fly to Shanghai even if he could not visit SDL, just too buy another cookie!

    OMG!!! That cookie. Oh, how I would love another right now. That reminds me how hungry I am. So I am done talking ... for now.!

    And with that we fell into bed around midnight. No early morning for us the next day!!

    Up Next: The power of Frankenweenie!
     
    iivye likes this.
  15. Captain_Oblivious

    Captain_Oblivious DIS Dad #257

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Messages:
    11,413
    Well, we don't just let anybody in here.

    Oh my. And if they need to post a sign...

    I can vouch for this. You still owe me a new phone, by the way.

    Next we'll see Disney's Magical Urine Mopping Experience!

    That sounds like fun. My daughter would love that.

    Oops. Sorry you didn't get to do it. Whatever the reason, I'd totally blame Michael for it.

    Only those who are slaves to the school calendar...:rolleyes1

    :rotfl2::rotfl2:

    That looks cool!

    You've definitely sold me on the Pirates ride.
     
  16. franandaj

    franandaj I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2009
    Messages:
    33,298
    OK if I can get through this response before you post another update I'll be caught up here!

    So essentially no "perk" for being an onsite guest.

    I'll remember everything is slower there. To make rope drop you have to leave much earlier that usual.

    That's nice that they came to your aid.

    Note to self: watch the movie before I go.

    That's the best description of the ride that I've heard, but I'm sorry to hear it is short. That may have been the first time I've heard that.

    Nope missed that one. I think I was too cool back then.

    I've heard that is a very cool time to try it.

    Now I'm incredibly curious about it!

    I got really excited when I read this, I've never heard a review of this, i don't think.

    Oh well...

    I do! That's also the first time anyone has posted it in a TR I've read.

    It just keeps going downhill... :rolleyes1 :laughing:

    Well I'm glad to hear it was a good lunch. I'm often skeptical about grab and go type places.

    That sounds awful. We were doing some work with paving stones yesterday, a lot of lifting, bending, and it was humid cause a tropical storm was in the area. I had sweat dripping off my forehead and I didn't like it one bit!

    :sad2: obviously by your experiences, they didn't get their point across.

    Interesting, I would not have noticed that.

    And neither have I. Ever.

    I was wondering if this was similar to the Challenge Trail in DCA.

    OK, so, NO.

    Yeah, really? I had planned to be in WDW over Labor Day weekend, but if you were reading my TR you would know that that plan was vetoed when it was discovered that John Williams was at the Hollywood Bowl that weekend and it was required that Fran and I attend. I do have to say that the weather at the Hollywood Bowl was much preferred to that at WDW that weekend!

    Note to self: Another film I need to watch before attending that park.

    You made a valiant effort!

    I was lucky enough to see the Shanghai ending at an event an Imagineering so I've actually seen all three endings without having traveled to Shanghai!

    I've heard that too. I saw a map where friends walked back and forth and back and forth transversing far more than than they needed to but didn't realize how the park was laid out.

    I didn't realize that you had so little time at SDL! You definitely need to go back if this is it!
     
  17. franandaj

    franandaj I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2009
    Messages:
    33,298
    OK if I can get through this response before you post another update I'll be caught up here!

    So essentially no "perk" for being an onsite guest.

    I'll remember everything is slower there. To make rope drop you have to leave much earlier that usual.

    That's nice that they came to your aid.

    Note to self: watch the movie before I go.

    That's the best description of the ride that I've heard, but I'm sorry to hear it is short. That may have been the first time I've heard that.

    Nope missed that one. I think I was too cool back then.

    I've heard that is a very cool time to try it.

    Now I'm incredibly curious about it!

    I got really excited when I read this, I've never heard a review of this, i don't think.

    Oh well...

    I do! That's also the first time anyone has posted it in a TR I've read.

    It just keeps going downhill... :rolleyes1 :laughing:

    Well I'm glad to hear it was a good lunch. I'm often skeptical about grab and go type places.

    That sounds awful. We were doing some work with paving stones yesterday, a lot of lifting, bending, and it was humid cause a tropical storm was in the area. I had sweat dripping off my forehead and I didn't like it one bit!

    :sad2: obviously by your experiences, they didn't get their point across.

    It's nice that they like what they've done before, but too bad that they can't come up with something totally new.

    Either have I.

    And I don't think you would find me doing this either.

    I was wondering if this is what the thing at DCA is, I think its called Redwood Creek Challenge Trail, but I guess not.

    Yeah, what kind of crazy person?

    Another film I'll need to see before I go....

    Yours are the first that I've seen in the dark. It looks like a completely different ride.

    I've actually seen the Shanghai film, I got attend an event at Imagineering and they showed us the film before the park opened.

    I've heard that as well. Someone posted a map of the park and then drew a line of their path throughout the day, they backtracked numerous times. I don't remember their step count but it was something like 20K.

    Wow! Short trip! I believe you said you were doing the 144 hour transit Visa, but I didn't realize you only had the two days in the park.
     
  18. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake May the force be with you!

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2017
    Messages:
    3,975
    Found this and following along! I'm in the midst of planning my own Asian Adventure! But it will be solo and going to all 3 places!!! Yep, I'm crazy - but I started planning a Tokyo HalloXmas trip (inspired by Disneytouristblog), then saw the HK Halloween decorations and decided to add that on, and then it seemed silly to not just knock out all the Asian parks when I can use my airmiles to get all over in business class for $500 in taxes/fees (gotta love Aeroplan allowing 2 stopovers in addition to final destination).

    But your TR has already been a help! And since I did Paris this past summer, I can understand the comparisons!
     
    indoshakespeare likes this.
  19. dolphingirl47

    dolphingirl47 In Search of the Tag Fairy

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    31,226
    That is a very wise approach.

    I think I pass. I was at a industry conference in May and let's just say this put me off travel agent trips for the rest of my life.

    I actually really liked that area even though I agree that it is somewhat disjointed. When we were there, it was all decked out for Christmas and looked truly magical.

    I had read about the lockers before our trip and could not understand what was going on when we found the area closed. We took our stuff with us and just before the loading dock they had cast members with what looked like laundry carts collecting all bags.

    That was our sentiment exactly.

    I can't wait to do this again. I always had a soft spot for this ride at Disneyland and Disneyland Paris, but when I was at Disneyland Paris last week, I kept thinking how much better this is at Shanghai.

    I have to admit I am an absolute wimp when it comes to coasters and other thrill rides. I loved Tron, but I felt it was going on forever.

    Oh, I have to remember this for our upcoming trip. This sounds like just my kind of place.

    I discovered them in June and can't wait to get my hands on more.

    I never even had heard about this before. I may have to check this out in December if I feel brave.

    That really covers it perfectly.

    I thought that this was really strange. I think the kind of boats they use for It's A Small World where everybody is facing forward would have worked much better.

    I kind of thought that this ride would be a once and done for me, but now I want to do it in the dark.

    20 minutes would be my absolute limit for this ride.

    Thanks for the tip.

    I felt exactly the same way.

    Corinna
     
  20. Steppesister

    Steppesister DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2013
    Messages:
    7,735
    I'm trying desperately to catch up, Magdalene, so in the interest of reading more I will keep my comments brief. But rest assured I have read the last update (both parts!) and really enjoyed the next bit of touring through SDL. It really sounds like a beautifully done park with some nice and unique to there rides.


    Just wow.


    I LOVE this slogan!

    This sounds like a very really well done and fun attraction. I think I'd probably really like it a lot!
     
  21. Magical_Suitcase

    Magical_Suitcase aka: kid-at-heart

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2018
    Messages:
    121
    Kate here (aka "kid-at-heart", now "Magical_Suitcase" since that is what my family calls me when I create "magical vacations". Finally after 1000s of posts and moving up in age, "kid-at-heart" just did not feel right anymore; so I am starting over with a new disboards name...).

    Totally off topic: I am so glad to hear you and Michael have tied the knot. You two seem to have so much fun together, a great thing to have in a relationship. With you being in Germany and Michael being in Florida, how did you meet?

    Throughly enjoying the trip report. I do not think I could handle the personal space issues though.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018

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