Dancing through Disney trip

Just landed back at home but we had a ball on our latest trip. I’ll post a trip report later. Have some good tips for a kid close to the height mark at 40” as well. Had a killer view at Destino of the MK fireworks at night. Thank you touring plans! And oh yeah, Tron is pretty awesome. Especially at night!



Omg, the cuteness returns!!


OK, so here goes. This trip was all about our DD8 getting to perform at DS with her dance company. Since we were just there in March for a longer stay, we opted to make this shorter trip and just bounced down for 5 days. I learned several new things this trip that I think are worth sharing for other liners. It is funny how Disney always shows you some new cards which is what makes us all return besides the nostalgia and fun. So here are some things I learned before I go through our trip. You guys are always more than helpful to advise and share so here are my takes.

  1. As expected, June is hot. But crowd levels were down considerably. We went to three parks on our trip and had no issues doing anything and everything we wanted and LLs were readily available well into the evening for many attractions. I have not seen it quite like that in a bit. So, besides heat and the risk of occasional showers (which we luckily did not have to contend with), I think this particular time was solid to get lots accomplished.

  2. Sanford International. OK, so I have always been “inconvenienced” on prior trips to consider Sanford to fly into because it is further away and of course no Magical Express. But here is the deal, there are no waits there. No waits for check-in, no waits for TSA security, no train to ride to your terminal, nothing. So, even though it is about 20 minutes further away than MCO, the ease of using it and efficiency makes it more attractive to me than I had ever thought before. We had an 8:15am flight from AVL to SFB. We landed at 9:25am, got our luggage (first off the carousel) and were in our transportation by 9:45am. We then went to Coronado Springs, checked in at the tower to leave our luggage and see about our room, grabbed a Minnie Van to shoot over to Beach Club and then entered EP through the IG and we were at Via Napoli in EP by 11:30am. There is no way that would have happened through MCO. So just some food for thought. Cheaper flights to SFB many times as well.

  3. Tron. Very cool ride. I have plenty of extra weight and have always had big calves (wrestler back in my younger days). It was difficult to get positioned for the leg bar to go over my calves. I had seen this prior to going on a video so I wasn’t surprised. I rode it twice and got it to work. My advice here to share is to take your time if there is an issue. CMs were pretty patient. You really need to get your knee down as far as you can and get your lower leg at a 90 degree angle. It takes wiggling as well to get it comfortable. Even after you are locked-in, I felt like wiggling made it much better.

  4. Watching fireworks at MK. We left Tron at 9:15pm and the fireworks show had just started as we left the ramp. My DD3 and DD8 wanted to shop Main Street and wanted to forgo the HEA show. We obviously go too often. But as we were walking beside the Plaza going the back way behind Main Street, there are viewing areas taped off. By the time you are getting closer to Tony’s and the Exit, no one was using these areas and it was a straight and beautiful view of the Castle. No obstructions and you are way ahead of the crowds to get out of the park. Just a thought for those that might be leaving and want to see it but not fight the craziness. We had to fight crazy to cross main street from the confectionary side to the emporium to shop. Not recommended.

  5. Tony’s Italian. I had never eaten there. I am pretty critical of food choices at MK because comparatively to other parks, I never really feel like there is a really nice option. I am not taking away from the Columbia House fans or Crystal Palace fans so don’t shoot the messenger. It’s just a different kind of park experience. We love just doing turkey legs, spring rolls and other fun seasonal stuff. But we did a Tony’s for dinner this time and had a very good meal. Not out of this world of course but I really liked the location and the food was good. So a thumbs up there. Loved trying something new and enjoying it.

  6. Woody’s Backyard BBQ. Very cool place. Theming is awesome and we had a great waiter that was into it as well. Food was good. Kind of like Whispering Canyon. My girls are adventurous eaters so they can handle a lot (see # 7). But I have read many families talking about their kids not liking it. If your kid is a picky eater, don’t do it. That would be my advice. Don’t risk trying to get them to eat potato salad and fancier mac and cheese. Or, if you don’t mind paying for them to be there but no eat the food, grab them something else and let them have fun there. Might be worth the price.

  7. Teppan Edo. Love this place. I haven’t been in some time and the girls had never been. They had a ball and loved the habachi show. My DD8 loves shopping at Japan. It is her thing and always has been. Not sure why because we don’t really watch any Gudetama and Helly Kitty stuff. But she always loves it there. And of course, leaving our dinner and walking out on the upper deck to see the fireworks show is awesome.

  8. Gran Destino Tower. We have stayed here before but I cannot tell you how much I like this place. I know it isn’t on the Skyliner and not on the monorail loop. But this is one of the nicer hotels and the rooms are great. We got room 818 with a water view and with TP help, I had requested something pretty much exactly the same but on a higher floor. I wanted to see the MK fireworks at night if possible and this room did not disappoint. It was framed for us right out the window. I will post in the room request thread as well. But Gran Destino was incredibly quiet, you have a wonderful, michelin star restaurant in Toledo, both the Dahlia and Barcelona lounges are great. Just a super resort and at a moderate price. To boot, you are super close in a Minnie Van or bus ride to EP and HS especially. It is one of the more centrally located hotels. So, if you want more bang for your buck tor to lengthen a stay versus staying at a Deluxe, this is it.

  9. Parents with a child at or near the 40" height requirement mark. Let me share some valuable advice. The measuring stands at attractions are all different. Sometimes really different. For example, our DD3 (almost 4) recently measured at Dollywood which has a literal measurement stand to get banded at the front of their park. It is down to a 16th of an inch. Our DD3 passed this test there. At Disneyworld it is different. So, at Soarin’ we measured and she was just tall enough! I mean just barely. Got to ride for the first time as well. At Test Track she was wayyy taller than the measurement. Maybe by an inch. But then it got worse. At RotR the right side measurement stand had her well short. The left side one was close but no cigar. So she couldn’t ride it. At BTMRR, the right side measured her short and the left had her tall enough. So she made it on that one. So advice to other parents in this particular stage, make sure you use both stands if there is an issue. And RotR seems like you need to be taller than 40" really to ride it. Maybe 40.25". We learned something new there about height. Disney doesn’t have it nailed down exactly by any means.

  10. Gearfusion transportation. I want to recommend Gearfusion for your shuttle between airports or for anything else in the area. Husband and wife owned and they were incredible with communication, had car seats all installed in advance, super clean vehicles that were newer (Ford Expedition Max). Drove very professionally and carefully. Just a very good experience and fairly priced. Someone else had used them on here and I gave them a try. Will definitely do it again. Todd and Markela. Check them out. I booked online in advance and they communicated via texting mostly but were timely and friendly. So give them a shot.

So that’s my top 10 list I suppose for things to share. I will try to start posting some pics and park day info coming up. It was a wonderful trip. Thanks for coming along in this report.


Great insights! Thanks for sharing!


Day 1, Thursday

We arrive at EP about 11:15pm per my post above. We landed a Remy, GotG LL and VQ, and Soarin’ LL with a stack. We started at Via Napoli for lunch We got there so fast that we were ahead of our dining rez but they got us right in.

We then moseyed over to Remy where we got some fountain time

Then headed to Soarin’. Our DD3 had never gotten to ride it so there were several firsts on this trip. She is pretty fearless so she loved every minute of it.

Grabbed a quick Nemo while I caught the drop time for Test Track. My DD8 wanted to ride Mission Space for her first time so we did the Orange while mama and DD3 did the green. We left there and hit up GotG because TT was down. We got in a GotG with rider swap and then lined back up again for our VQ with rider swap and GotG went down while in the line. It was getting later and my DD8 decided to jump ship so we could go shop at Japan and eat our dinner. TT had opened back up after a short rain which we missed and my DD3 got to ride it as well. Full of giggles when it got outside and went up to speed. I am going to have to watch that one! I landed a FEA in the drop but girls decided to skip it. I really can’t believe they are passing on some of these but they are learning to be really good shoppers from their Mom :slight_smile:

We then headed back to Beach Club and grabbed a Minnie Van back to Coronado Springs. Our girls did the search for Spike scavanger hunt again and got a fun cup. We didn’t technically find all of them but Disney takes care of you. When we got to the room we realized we had a great view and it was the first room around the corner from the elevator which was also nice. Loved 818.

Here are some daytime pics of the view

Next day up was a pool day!


So much useful info! Thank you for sharing! :smiley:


Love your reports! Can’t wait to keep reading! So cute


What a pic of the girls watching fireworks!


Picking up at Day 2, we made it a pool day. Had a bite to eat at the Mercado first. I really like the Empanadas and Frittata choices. Kids opted for giant Mickey waffles of course. We then went to the pool where I didn’t take any photos at all apparently :slight_smile: In my defense, we took most photos on my wife’s phone because she is the official Instagram/FB reel publisher. I am just the hired help. Kids really enjoyed the pool. It has a nice layout where you can see the entire pool and the slde is solid. My DD3 must’ve slid down it 50 times. We made a day of it until 4 and then met up with friends from our dance company to eat a bite at Rix Sports Bar before the girls all did their run through. Rix is pretty bleh. I didn’t want to eat there but it was a good place to meet up with everyone. Their Watchos are decent I suppose. You should expect bar food at a bar really and that is what it is.

This was the little one dancing in the lower lobby at Barcelona Lounge while big sis was practicing.

Day 3 was dance day followed by HS. At 7:00am we grabbed a SDD LL, bought RotR and got a MMRR after 2 hours. DD8 had to be down at 9:45am to get on the bus. Disney really did things nicely for the girls. They picked them up together at CS to bus them over to DS. Only the girls and smoe instructors were allowed to travel with them. They changed clothes at Saratoga Springs in a staging area as the little stage/amphitheater at DS is small and barely a backstage to work with.

We shopped around DS waiting for the 12:30pm time for the performance. It was blazing hot of course so we did a Little Mermaid drink for the Poutine place and then one of the Minnie waffle cones as well. DD3 was a fan. Performance was really cool. It was about 25 minutes and I was surprised how many casual observers stopped to watch.

We made our way back to the hotel to wait on our girl to return. They changed back at Saratoga again and then they took them around the backside of MK so they could see the Monorail/Train station, the fireworks pen and Tron. Disney gave all of the girls a cool pin for their jackets and had named them castmembers for the day. Very nice touches. We got our fam back together after a wardrobe change and off to HS. Hit MMRR first, SDD next then off to RotR. Per earlier in my post our DD3 couldn’t ride it so we did a rider swap with the DD8. DD3 fell asleep and had lost her magicband earlier so I stopped at Guest Services there near Muppetvision and filed a lost and found report. It was found and sent via mail back to us as an update.

You guys recognize this shot from our other trips. Obligatory nap picture. And there are still Wubbanubs tucked beside her if pay close attention. She isn’t giving them up until she is 4 per her. That will be on the 20th of this month so we shall see.

We then grabbed Star Tours and DD8 and I headed over for RnR while mama and DD3 hit up ASS. We then met back up for a Woody’s BYBBQ.

We then hit up SDD right at closing for the nighttime experience We love it best. Fireworks were going off and lightning from a storm some distance away which made it pretty neat. Then back to the hotel to gear up for an MK day. DD3 was still going strong since she got her nap in earlier.


The sunglasses on the little one, with the huge Mickey Waffle - that’s a whole mood and I love it!

LOVE this!



How did you like Woody’s?


Woody’s was great! I love the theming and the girls had a lot of fun. I don’t want to put any spoilers in here but there are some neat things that happen to keep your attention. Half the restaurant is at night and half in the day. Food was pretty good. The brisket and ribs were very similar to WCC if you have been there. It was load of food. It didn’t look like the four of us really touched it. Of course it was 92 degrees and this was at 8:00pm at this point so the hunger wasn’t there either. I would highly recommend it for something different and fun. I think they get backed up pretty often so plan on waiting past your reservation. Ours wasn’t bad. Maybe 15-20 minutes. Some friends of ours waited longer. There are some tables along the back that aren’t ideal to sit in . And by back I mean imagine it is against Woody’s fence outside. Kind of a little mini-wall with a table behind it. So ask to be seated out in the open to experience it all if you can.


The little one does not lack spirit and independence let me tell you! Hope she never loses it but she will test you at every corner.


Those cow print skirts are too cute! Your wife done good, per her usual! :joy:


So much is explained by this, especially our “blue” food! We were in the night section! (Food wasn’t really blue, but the lighting made it look blue in photos.) @Wahoohokie @Dreamer @JustKeepSmiling @Shanneepantslovesdisney


I will pass that along. She will appreciate you noticing!


I’m so glad to hear this. It’s a request of one of my DDs, and I’ve seen mixed reviews. I think we’ll like it.

Excellent tip! Thank you.


I’m feeling completely stupid I didn’t realize that. When I ate there with my family the lighting was better but I didn’t know why. :sob:


I don’t think, with all the reviews I’ve seen and heard, even one single person mentioned that. This was a :bulb:moment for me