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Disney World Trip With Some Pictures


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Today was my first day of my three day trip to Disney World! The last time I went to the "most magical place on earth" was in 2007 when I was 9 and afraid of everything ... so I didn't ride any thrill rides ... at all. This was my time to redeem myself and ride some of the best themed rides on Earth!

Today was our trip to Magic Kingdom and Epcot. We are staying at the Hilton Bonnett Creek (which, by the way, I recommend to everyone ... especially those of Hilton Honors ...) so we took a shuttle at 8:00 to Magic Kingdom and got there at 8:30. Wow, was it crowded! But what can you expect? We watched the cheesy opening show and headed towards the entrance.

Keep in mind this was my sister's first time here, at 6 years old. She was so amazed by the size of the Cinderella Castle in person! My dad and I decided to play it smart and get a Fast Pass for Space Mountain right away. On the way, we passed Winnie the Pooh - I gave my dad a funny looking smile and he hesitated for a minute and said, "Oh, fine." The reason I wanted to ride it, by the way, was because it was a walk on - and I mean walk on! It's a cute little ride. I'd give it a 3/5, only because it was too short.

We ran into my mom and my sister in the line for it, which they looked at us like, "Why would a boy teenager and his dad go on Winnie the Pooh?" Oh well. They had gone on Peter Pan's Flight, which Emily (my sister) really liked. In another walk on we rode it's a small world and to this minute I am writing the song is stuck in my head. Very cool ride but the song is so annoying! 3/5.

It was only 10! We had been on two rides (including my mom and Emily) in an hour! Considering the crowds, it was a big accomplishment. Our Fast Pass time came so we went on Space Mountain with a ten minute wait (compared to the stand by 75 minute wait). I don't care what you say... this ride has some competition with Flight of Fear. While the thrill is nothing compared to it, the theme is great and the sharp corners really pull some lateral G's. A must ride! 5/5.

Next we were going to ride Buzz Lightyear but too long of a wait ... so my dad says hey, let's go on Carousel of Progress. I groaned but apparently it's about the nostalgia because he and his friend from college used to go on it all the time (living in Florida. ... ). He was sad to see that the song had changed, but other than that, it's actually a really cool show. 4/5.

It was about 11:00 now and we were getting hungry, and we planned on eating at Liberty Tree Tavern but it was way too expensive! $31.99 for a meal! Since we were right next to Haunted Mansion, we rode that and enjoyed the funny tombstones inscriptions - some of them looked new since we last went. The interactive queue really helps pass time, which was about 30 minutes. Also during the line, I kept telling Emily, "Are you scared? I am." But she made fun of me (a six year old!) Emily loved this ride too. She said, "That wasn't scary at all!" I love this ride and always have ... 4/5.

For lunch we ate at some turkey sandwich restaurant ... forget the name. It was pretty good but the BBQ I had on my turkey sandwich was just some Heinz BBQ sauce. The restaurant was directly connected to Frontierland so we went over there to get a Fast Pass for Big Thunder (a 70 minute wait). While we were waiting we rode Pirates of the Caribbean. On the surprise drop in the beginning Emily screamed so loud, and the cannonballs did too. I love Pirates, but it's just too short! 4/5.

Our Fast Pass was ready for BTMR ... the refurbishment looked very cool but I couldn't compare it because I'd never been on it. They had it closed for refurb from January to late May. Emily was screaming and laughing the whole ride - such great expressions to watch at Disney! 5/5.

At this point it was insanely packed, and walking around was like waiting in a line. It started raining pretty hard so we watched the Enchanted Tiki Room, which is pretty good but also too short. 3/5.

So, it was pouring rain and almost storming but our original plan was to go to Epcot after Magic Kingdom...and we did anyway. We took the monorail over to Epcot.

Let me just say I LOVE Soarin' and it's one of my favorite rides there ... I was so sad to see that all Fast Passes were distributed and it had a 120 minute wait. We never got to ride it. :(

Since this report is long enough already, I will just say what I rode at Epcot and not actually report on it.

Journey Into Imagination - 2/5. (Bleck! Boring, gross, and loud!)

Captain EO - 4/5. (Great tribute to Michael Jackson, and good 3D effects).

The Seas - 4/5. (The actual ride was alright, but the aquarium was very neat!)

Innoventions - 5/5. (So cool and hands on!)

Spaceship Earth - 4/5. (Very interesting ride, with very cool animatronics).

Pictures will come soon ... and a trip report for Hollywood Studios coming Thursday, Animal Kingdom coming Friday, and a night trip report of Magic Kingdom Friday night!

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Something I forgot to put in my original post; if you want a good place to eat while in World Showcase at Epcot, eat at the pastry shop in France. It was the best I'd ever had. The ham and cheese croissant was amazing, and so was my chocolate croissant. It was a very simple menu that was easy to choose from. For two ham and cheese croissants, one chocolate croissant, and a chocolate chip cookie it was only $12!

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Back from Downtown Disney. For jcgoble3, I will explain pretty much what Downtown is.

It is split up into three parts; West Side, Pleasure Island, and the Marketplace. Each section has restaurants, shopping, and entertainment. West Side is more of the entertainment part; with Cirque De Solei, House of Blues, Disney Quest, and Bongo's (a Cuban restaurant). Disney Quest is an indoor theme park (not with rides, but kind of like Game Works) ... never done it, never will, reviews are bad for it. In Pleasure Island is most of the dining, while in Marketplace it's most of the shopping (where World of Disney, the world's largest Disney store is located). Downtown isn't really a city at all, but an outdoor mall like Easton in Columbus, for those that have been.

For the trip report now; we ate at Rainforest Cafe (recommended - good food and good theme), and just walked around the rest of the time shopping.


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To answer a couple of quick questions/comments from above (as a former employee there and having been 3x over the past year, most recently last wek with my 5 yr old)

DD--split into the west and east side with the former Pleasure Island stuck in the middle. The west side or marketplace contains the world's largest disney store, a big movie cineplex, plus some other disney and non disney-themed shops and restaurants on the casual side.

The middle is Pleasure island, which is closed (former new years eve themed nightclub complex).

The east side of DD features more upscale places to eat (house of blues, Wolfgang Puck), and is anchored by the cool-looking big top looking white bldg featuring the Cirque Du Soleil show La Nouba.

The Dining Plan-you can purchase this when you book your pkg. Depending on which one you choose, you get several meals plus snacks a day. Be careful, though--if you are in tow with little ones/picky eaters, it's not worth the money, unless they throw it in for free, which they often do when you book a several day trip (for the basic pkg). There are ways to maximize the plan which I won't go into..go to any 3rd party disney tip website for hints. Most places throughout the whole resort take the plan with a few execeptions.

As for the parks--soarin fastpasses always go quick, even on slow days..go early and get one, but be sure to be back within the time listed..no more latecomers, except if the ride is not operating during your window, at which point youc an come back anytime. Maximize the fastpasses..early in the day you can collect fastpasses relatively quickly in short time intervals. On busy days, the 'mountains' often are out of fps by mid Pm for the rest of the day.

Hope this helps! Have fun! I can't wait to go back and see more of the new FantasyLand..prob this Fall.

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Toy Story Mania also runs out of fast passes before noon on most days, that's a must ride at DHS. Along with Tower of Terror, Rockin Roller Coaster, Star Tours, Studio Backlot tours, Beauty and The Beast live, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Lights Motor Action, Fantasmic, and most will disagree with this but I say The Great Movie Ride.

I also forgot to add Walt Disney: One Man's Dream and learn to draw at The Magic of Disney Animation

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Toy Story Mania also runs out of fast passes before noon on most days, that's a must ride at DHS. Along with Tower of Terror, Rockin Roller Coaster, Star Tours, Studio Backlot tours, Beauty and The Beast live, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Lights Motor Action, Fantasmic, and most will disagree with this but I say The Great Movie Ride.

I also forgot to add Walt Disney: One Man's Dream and learn to draw at The Magic of Disney Animation

Thanks! I'm going to DHS tomorrow. I thought Toy Story Mania looked kind of dumb ... but I guess I should try it.

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Thanks! I'm going to DHS tomorrow. I thought Toy Story Mania looked kind of dumb ... but I guess I should try it.

No way!! It is one of the coolest rides anywhere in WDW..it routinely has 60-90 min waits within an hr after park opening..def get a fastpass for it..you won't be disappointed!

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Today was my trip to Disney's Hollywood Studios! I stayed overnight at a cabin in Fort Wilderness with my grandparents and aunt while my parents when on a "romantic dinner". Quick review of the cabins: Now, this might just be me, but I hated the cabins! Small, old, with terrible TV stations and very slow Wi-Fi. There was also a weird smell coming from the kitchen, and our AC broke and took 4 hours to fix! Don't stay here!

In the morning my dad picked me up from Fort Wilderness and we went to DHS while my mom and Emily (my sister) went to Magic Kingdom. We already had our plan mapped out; at around 10am we headed toward Rock n' Roller Coaster and got a Fast Pass (the wait was already at 40 minutes). Since Tower of Tower is right next to Rock n' Roller Coaster, we rode that after a 30 minute wait. I'll admit - I was really scared during the beginning of the ride before the free fall part. The set up scares you a lot! The airtime on some of the stops at the time is great, and it falls pretty fast. My new favorite ride at Disney (but I still have some rides tomorrow). 5/5. MUST ride.

We still had some time to spare before our Fast Pass went into affect for Rock n' Roller Coaster so we rode The Great Movie Ride . It's a very underrated ride at the park. It's a tour through all the movies from the past, but in the middle you are hijacked by someone in one of the settings (gangster and western) and this includes gun fights and explosions; very cool! 4/5. At 11:10 our Fast Pass window was open and we rode Rock n' Roller Coaster within 15 minutes. Sorry Flight of Fear fans - this one's better. The G's on the launch are outrageous and the overall theme is great (what can you expect?), also it's very fun having Aerosmith playing while riding! 4/5.

Rain was pouring at this point and everyone had ponchos but us, but we refused to pay $9.00 for one. We were starving now at noon and we always eat at the Sci-Fi Dine In Theater. I got a chocolate milkshake with an Angus bacon cheeseburger and my dad got a burger with a HOT DOG on top and sauerkraut on top as well. Great food, and the dining experience is neat too. You eat in cars that are parked at a drive in theater while they play science fiction shorts, with advertisements from the 50s and all. Must eat!

Next watched Muppet Vision 3D , my favorite 3D movie in the park (competing with PhillharMagic, Captain EO, and It's Tough to be a Bug). There was some great use of effects in it and it's in my opinion the funniest ride in Disney World! 4/5.

I heard Star Tours was a must-do but of course, it was an hour and 10 minute wait, so what else can you do besides get a Fast Pass? While we were waiting for our window, we rode the Backlot Tour ... it was interesting, I guess. Some of the parts were somewhat boring but you get to see how a movie scene is filmed that includes heavy rain and explosions, as well as how they filmed the attack scene in the movie "Pearl Harbor". 3/5.

Star Tours...ehh....everyone said how great it was ... maybe I'm just not the same as everyone else, but it was alright. It was still fun, but not as thrilling as I had thought. Just a simple motion simulator with bad 3D and a short movie ... oh well. 3/5.

It may seem like a short day but we left at 3:00 due to the heavy rain moving into the area. I think we got everything done besides Toy Story Mania and the shows. About TSM - when we got into the park it was already a 50 minute wait and we wanted to ride Tower of Terror before it got too crowded; by the time we got off of the ride TSM was a 120+ minute wait and the FastPass window was at 2:00, around the time we wanted to start heading out ... so sorry, TSM fans.

Hollywood Studios is my new favorite Disney park ... a lot of cool shows and rides; a must do park at Disney! If anyone wants some tips or wants to ask questions about Disney, just post! I'll be happy to answer!!

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Glad you had fun! DHS is a nice little park, but is due for some updating..MuppetVision opened with the park in 1988 and the backlot tour isn't anything to write home about. I thought the star tours refresh looks great--its a diff storyline just about everytime you go on it. I'd love to see Carsland transported to Florida..they can get rid of its tough to be a bug and the backlot tour to do so.

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Yesterday I went to Animal Kingdom with my family. It was a very fun ride there. My cousin, Erick (13 years old) , hates roller coasters. HATES them. He says he hates the drop and loops. But he knew he would have to ride Expedition Everest. The whole car ride he was talking, talking, talking, obviously nervous. When we drove into the parking lot he said "It looks a lot bigger in person."

Right at the opening we got Fast Passes for Kilimanjaro Safaris (already a 40 minute wait ... I hate Disney.) and tried to make our way through the insane crowds. On the other side of the park was Mount Everest, standing there waiting for us. We waited about 30 minutes to get on. Erick was so scared. The ride was pretty good. The thing is, as a roller coaster it wouldn't be that good, but with the theme, it makes it much better. Although the backwards segment is pretty fun. I was honestly scared when the yeti ripped the tracks and we were launched forward. You could tell Erick was scared ... in the picture he was holding onto his stepdad (my uncle) and looked about ready to cry! 4/5 ... must ride at AK.

Next we rode Dinosaur which only had a 10 minute wait (not sure why). I love this ride! It scared me half to death, but it was awesome! The jerkiness combined with the yelling of the man about "Oh no! There's a big dino!" and the flashing of lights made for an awesome ride. The ending is amazing ... you'll have to ride it to see. 5/5.

Our Fast Pass was ready for the safari, but when we got to it the Fast Pass line was a half hour! What a waste of Fast Passes. We didn't go on it, mainly because it was about ready to rain and we just didn't feel like waiting for a ride where we see two zebras and four other animals. To get away from the rain, we watched It's Tough to be a Bug (I HATE THIS SHOW, IT SCARES ME!!!) and it still scared me ... in the part with the wasps, Erick grabbed onto me ... wow. The rain was pouring hard now and my mom, my dad, my sister, my aunt, and her daughter all left and left me, my uncle and cousin. Since it was so crowded we did nothing else but ride Primeveal Whirl. It's actually a pretty fun ride, and the first mouse type coaster I'd be on. What a neck breaker! Fun ride though .. and Erick screamed like a little girl on the drops. 4/5.

We left already because it was packed, wet, and not fun anymore. It was only 2! Oh well. I went back to Fort Wilderness with my cousin and uncle and we stayed in his RV for the night. This is when I got a surprise ... they were going to Universal the next day (Saturday)! I had begged and begged my family to take me before our vacation instead of going to Animal Kingdom or some other Disney park, but they said no. But my uncle was nice enough to take me with them for the day ... trip report coming soon ...

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Islands of Adventure trip report:

Referring back to my previous post, my uncle, aunt, and cousin Erick took me to Universal today. They had 3 day tickets but I am leaving tomorrow so we were just going today with me, so we had to pick one park. I obviously picked IoA (Hulk, Dragon Challenge, Harry Potter, Jurassic Park, explains itself). I am glad I picked it ... although I don't think Erick wasn't (afraid of roller coasters).

Since my uncle is crazy, he decided to get us all Express Plus passes (cut in front of the lines like Fast Lane, but $20 more ... ). It wasn't needed. I feel kind of bad because he wasted his money. When we walked in I automatically thought "better than Disney!". It was so well themed and there were no bare buildings anywhere. I felt like I was in another world. Of course since its the first ride in the park, we rode The Incredible Hulk. Erick wouldn't ride it, though he definitely missed out. It was only a 10 minute wait but with express it was 5 minutes (like I said, waste of money). The launch uphill was really fun and going right into the inversion was awesome. It is a surprisingly smooth ride, too. I loved the cobra roll over the water. 5/5.

(We did so much I will just rate the rides now).

The Amazing Adventures of Spider Man - 5/5. (In relation to Harry Potter And The Forbidden Journey, 4/5.)

Dudley Do-Right's Ripsaw Falls - 4/5. (Gets you soaked! Erick was scared to ride this because of the "big" drop, but he ended up going on it and hating it).

Jurassic Park River Adventure - 4/5. (Great end drop, and the T-Rex is almost as good as AK's Dinosaur!)

Harry Potter & The Forbidden Journey - 10/5. (My favorite ride ever, including coasters. Something about it was just amazing ...).

Dragon Challenge - 4/5. (Very fun, but there's no sense of the coasters racing each other).

Three Broomsticks (restaurant) - 5/5. (Great fish and chips, with a very cool setting inside. Must eat).

Overall Harry Potter Area - 1,000/5. (Universal really outdid it here. Everything about it is perfect; it lives up to the hype and is just like in the movies).

Sin bad - 4/5. (A lot of fun, very funny, and the explosions are awesome!)

Poseidon - 4/5. (Great effects, wasn't sure what to expect ... half walk through attraction, half show).

The Cat In The Hat - 3/5. (Fun ride, but the theme itself was okay; not as good a dark ride as Disney's.)

Overall IoA is awesome. I may be overreacting a bit, but it was amazing! Everyone should go sometime in their life ...

Thanks for reading my reports. Forget about the pictures, by the way. My trip is now over and I'm going home.

Harry Potter ... you must

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