Mom here for the final chapter of our December trip report - Sunday in Animal Kingdom before our afternoon departure
Saturday night, we had attended a college football game in Orlando. It wasn't over until after 11, and we still had to walk back to the car and drive back to WDW. So, we were dragging on Sunday morning! Still, it was nothing an automated wake up call couldn't fix (I love these at Disney for some reason! They are definitely part of my morning routine.). Armed with coffee, and the leftover cookies the kids had made at kids' club, we checked out of the Boardwalk Inn and drove to Animal Kingdom by around 9:45. We would only have about 3 hours in the park before we left for the airport, so our mentality was totally different than a normal day of touring. We had 3 FPP for Primeval Whirl, Dinosaur, and Expedition Everest, and we planned to ride only those rides as many times as time allowed, and eat lunch.
The kids kept up the filiming in the park, and it was a total team effort keeping the iPad from flying out of the PW car as we spun down the track. No harm done, though! We wrote that twice. There is something I just love about Dinoland USA. I have enjoyed it all three times I have been there, so I think it just must be one of my special spots in the parks! You obviously can't tell, but I think I was grinning as I took this picture!
DS was hesitant about Dinosaur, and since it was down this summer, none of us had been on it before to reassure him. So we let DH and DD go first early in our FPP window, with thoughts of maybe returning to ride it after they did. He and I rode Triceratopspin and then waited for them outside Dinosaur. Apparently, I posted wait times for all three rides in Dinoland that morning, because on the Lines app, I have a "badge" for Dinoland USA - fitting since I like it so much! Another fun thing about touring a limited area of the park was having time to do things like record wait times. There wasn't as much to keep track of as on a full park day. Anyway, while we waited for DH and DD outside of Dinosaur, an enormous teen tour group joined the FPP line. The Cast Members were roping off areas outside the ride to create a maze for the FPP line! It was bad luck for my getting a chance to ride it, but since DS still didn't want to, I was happy to skip it.
We had a quick family meeting/meltdown on our way to the Boneyard to decide where to eat lunch. We still had FPP for Everest in the noon hour, and had to leave for the airport by 1, so I managed to convince/force the kids to do a Quick Service lunch at Flame Tree BBQ. Their menu has always sounded tempting when I browse menus online (I am sure I am not the only one who does that!). We had smoked pork BBQ (DH), smoked ribs and chicken (DD), a smoked turkey sandwich (DS), and the smoked chicken salad (me). I tried everything and thought it was delicious, but DD was a bit put off by the smokiness of everything. It was fun being able to pick a place with outdoor seating on a December trip - in August we were more guided by A/C than menus! There were exotic birds roaming around the pavilion, which added to the AK experience of lunch!
We zipped through the EE FPP line. I love this ride! DS tried it in August and wasn't a fan, so he waited for us right outside. We made a quick stop at the Asia food truck with the ice cream floats (one of these days, I will make it to Tamu Tamu to try a Dole Whip with coconut rum!), and then began our walk to the exit. I was so proud of us that we were able to do a day like this, enjoy the park for a few hours even if we weren't able to experience everything. Animal Kingdom was a great destination to do just that, with easy parking and lots of FPP availability (even seven days out!).
A quick flight later and we were in sub-freezing temperatures in Northern Virginia once again!
I hope 2017 or 2018 brings a chance to plan another trip, but I'll be living vicariously through all of you in the meantime! Keep the trip reports coming, and thanks for all the fun and good advice!