Not that we really need a reason to psych ourselves up for a trip to the happiest place on Earth, but I love a fun countdown to create an even greater sense of anticipation. I started 30 days from our vacation date. Each day one of the children opened an envelope with the number of days left written on the front. There was a gift or activity written inside. The treats were all something that could be used on the trip. They included: Disney socks, pajamas, Disney trading pins, Disney movies to watch in the car, personalized coin holder full of quarters and pennies for the pressed penny machines, and a Disney themed gift. There were also Disney themed breakfast, dinner, and cupcakes on the countdown.
This is just a fun little way of celebrating a vacation before actually going on it.
My husband and I visited Disney World a few weeks ago. We went without the children and only for a long weekend. We stayed off property because we had Hilton points. We stayed at the Disney Springs Hilton. It was decorated in a very contemporary way and I loved the streamlined look. Everyone at the hotel was very friendly. I would certainly recommend this hotel if you are looking for a place off property.
We arrived in the afternoon on a Friday and after checking in to the hotel and dropping our luggage in the room, we headed to Magic Kingdom. We stopped by the place next to City Hall to get our Sorcerer cards first. We played that for a while and then headed for the rides. We rode Big Thunder Mountain and It’s a Small World. We got great seats for Wishes. The fireworks are my husband’s favorite part; so he was so excited to watch them in a good spot.
After the fireworks, we went to find some other things to do. We love Laugh Factory and the Toy Story laser ride. It was very packed in the park every day we were there.
We visited Animal Kingdom and Epcot. Animal Kingdom was especially packed. We only went on the Kilimanjaro Safari; everything else was more than an hour wait. We went on to Epcot. We enjoyed the Art Festival. We are both BIG art fans; so we really enjoyed perusing the different pieces of art. We even purchased one. Noah was one of the featured artists and was there to meet with the people and sign his work. He was so engaging and incredibly talented! His story is amazing as well.
Both of us enjoy trying new foods and Epcot is a perfect place for this. We rode Living on the Land, which is one of my favorites. We also wore Soarin’. It’s the first time I’ve been on it since they changed it to the world version. It was nice, but I missed the orange grove so much!
We ate dinner at Rose and Crown one night and at the Captain’s Grille another night. My husband loved the steak so much at Rose and Crown. It is one of the older girl’s favorite foods of all time. The food is always good in Disney and both places were no exception.
One of the things we enjoy about going alone to Disney World is that we usually explore places that the children aren’t interested in visiting. If you ever wonder if this is a good trip for adults without children, the answer is YES!
Taking a little detour from our Spider-Man party, I thought I’d share about one of my favorite parks: Animal Kingdom.
Animal Kingdom is a must-do when visiting Disney World in my opinion. From the animals, to the rides, to the food, it is all incredible. We love the “towns” that you pass through as you walk the park. They offer that authenticity that Disney is always able to provide. We especially enjoy the music provided by people who are actually from the regions of the world represented.
We love Expedition Everest. While I’ll admit I do not like huge and scary rides, I even thoroughly enjoy this ride, as it is just right for me on the scary scale.
The show, Flights of Wonder (a bird show), is completely worth the time to see. You learn so much about these amazing creatures and get to see them fly and swoop. My parents are true bird lovers and this is a special stop for them to see these more exotic birds in action.
By far, the best part of all is the Kilimanjaro Safari. I could ride it over and over again. I absolutely look forward to it so much for each visit. The tour guide gives all kinds of facts about the animals that you are seeing. The animals are so close sometimes that you could reach out and touch them (but don’t).
David called these dragons.
I always love to see how excited my children are to see the animals. They never get tired of it either!
Of all the Disney World parks, Hollywood Studios is ranked lowest on my favorites list. I feel like there are not enough rides and that for our family, there isn’t quite enough to keep our attention for very long. On our last visit, I took the littles with me while my husband took the bigs to ride Tower of Terror ( I’ve done it once and I’m good). We decided to meet the Disney Junior characters. The lines were long, but not horribly long. I loved seeing all the little kids just eager with the anticipation of meeting these characters. It was adorable. My parents were with me, helping me wrangle the children. It was incredibly hot that day and they needed water and cold treats and cold napkins the whole time we were in line so I was so thankful they were there! When it was finally our turn it was magical and memorable and they loved it.
David was a little shy with Jake. He really liked Minnie Mouse. But he LOVED Sofia.
There was so much laughter at that kiss. He had obviously been thinking it out since he saw her. It was priceless and I’m SO GLAD we got pictures of it.
Meeting these characters is completely worth the trip to the park. You don’t get the opportunity to meet them (with the exception of Minnie, of course) anywhere else. If your little ones are Disney Junior fans, then they will definitely enjoy this experience!!
A few days before we were leaving for our Disney World trip, I heard that a company had been selling Disney dining reservations illegally and that Disney had stopped them. Because of this, there was now a chance that there were reservations available where there hadn’t been any before. I checked for dining reservations again and lo and behold, there was Cinderella’s Royal Table with several dinner slots open. We chose late reservations. We had arrived in Magic Kingdom later in the afternoon; but it was Extra Magic Hours night and the park was open until 1 a.m. We didn’t tell the children. We told them we were eating somewhere we had never eaten before. They guessed everywhere, but no one guessed inside the Castle! When we walked into the entrance of the Castle and went up to the desk for our reservation, all of the children were shocked and so excited!
In the foyer, they got to meet Cinderella.
No detail is overlooked, as is usual for all things Disney.