2019 Walt Disney World and Universal Studios
February 23, 24, and 25
Parents with Teens: Me, DW, DD17, & DS15.
4th trip to WDW, 2nd trip to Universal
Have seen shows and fireworks in past, this trip about the rides.
Staying off property with Rental Car
Saturday, February 23. Park Hopper passes.
Disney Hollywood Studios – arrived by 8:10 am
Touring Plans crowd level 6 (predicted 8)
- Slinky Dog Dash – arrived at 8:46 am. Waited in line for 25 minutes.
- Toy Story Midway Mania – arrived at 9:18 am. Waited in line for 27 minutes.
- Tower of Terror – DS15 and I arrived at 10:02. Ride was experiencing technical issues which delayed the line. Waited in line for 43 minutes. During this time – DD17 & DW met characters (Edna Mode, Chip & Dale, and Goofy), ate Num Num cookie, and watched “Incredibles!” dance party.
- Rock n Roll Coaster – DS15 and I skipped this because of 85 minute posted wait time. During this time - DD17 & DW saw Muppet Vision with no wait.
- Star Tours – arrived at 11:33 am. Waited in line for 27 minutes.
HS Recap: Did everything but RR Coaster and Alien Swirl. Left park around 12:30 pm to head over to Magic Kingdom.
Disney Magic Kingdom – arrived by 1:15 pm
Touring Plans crowd level 8 (predicted 9) – it seemed really, really, really busy to us. It was a warm day – 86°.
- Monsters Inc Laugh Floor at 1:25 pm – no real wait.
- Space Mountain – arrived to use Fast Pass at 2:00 pm – waited about 3 minutes.
- Carousel of Progress – arrived at 2:25 pm – no real wait.
- Peter Pan’s Flight – arrived to use Fast Pass at 3:05 pm – waited about 10 to 15 minutes.
- Left Magic Kingdom around 3:30 pm to go to an early dinner.
- Rode the boat to Polynesian Resort. Very nice, relaxing ride.
- Tried to get into Trader Sam’s at 3:50 pm, but we were too late. Hostess said wait times were an hour+.
- Ate dinner at Captain Cook’s. DW and I ordered pork fried rice, DS15 ordered chicken wings, and DD17 ordered turkey club melt. All was very good.
- Went through resort gift shop and lobby.
- Returned to Magic Kingdom via Monorail – arrived around 5:15 pm.
- People Mover – arrived at 5:27 pm. Waited in line for 10 minutes.
- Haunted Mansion – arrived at 6:02 pm. Waited in line for 38 minutes.
- Splash Mountain – arrived at 6:58 pm. Ride was experiencing technical issues which delayed the line. Waited in line for 54 minutes.
- Big Thunder Mountain – arrived at 8:13 pm. Waited in line for 17 minutes.
- Jungle Cruise – arrived at 8:41 pm. Waited in line for 20 minutes.
- Pirates of Caribbean – arrived at 9:13 pm. Waited in line for 19 minutes.
- 7 Dwarfs Mine Train – arrived to use Fast Pass at 9:50 pm. Waited in line for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Small World – walked on with zero wait.
- Buzz Lightyear – waited in line for 5 minutes.
- Astro Orbit – arrived around 10:50 pm. Always a slow loading ride. We were the last people off the ride at 11:30 pm. Exhausted!
MK Recap: Did everything on plan except Winnie the Poo and Under the Sea. Added Astro Orbit. In hindsight, we should have left after Buzz Lightyear.
Sunday, February 24. Park Hopper passes.
Disney Epcot – arrived by 8:30 am
Touring Plans crowd level 5 (predicted 7)
- Soarin – arrived at 8:50 am. One of the first groups there. Waited for ride to open for 15 minutes.
- Frozen – arrived at 9:20 am. Waited in line for 23 minutes.
- Test Track – arrived at 9:48 am. Picked the single rider line. Zero wait. Awesome choice!
- Mission Space Green – arrived at 10:04. Waited 5 minutes.
- Spaceship Earth – arrived at 10:30. Waited 14 minutes.
- Toured World Showcase from 11:10 am to 1:00 pm
a. I ordered traditional poutine at Refreshment Port near Canada.
b. Took lots of pictures. DD17 & DW got character picture with Jasmine in Morocco.
c. Lunch in Norway at Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe. DS15, DD17, and DW all had the Norwegian Club: Ham, Turkey, Bacon, Jarlsberg and Muenster Cheese with fresh Tomatoes, Sliced Red Onion and Lingonberry Mayonnaise on Toasted Multigrain Bread. This is everyone’s favorite sandwich.
d. Helped paint wall art – Epcot International Festival of the Arts
- Disney Visa pictures with Characters. Minnie and Pluto. Arrived at 12:55. Took 10 minutes.
- Living with the Land – arrived at 1:13. Waited 15 minutes or less.
- Dessert at Sunshine Seasons.
- The Seas with Nemo – arrived at 1:50 pm. Zero wait.
- Viewed the aquarium and saw some dolphins jumping. Considered Crush, but wait was too long. No line, just didn’t want to wait for the next show.
- Mickey – DW wanted to see Mickey Mouse. Waited 15 minutes. Got pictures with Mickey.
Recap: Did everything on plan except Turtle Talk with Crush. Could have done it, but didn’t want to wait.
Disney Animal Kingdom – arrived by 3:30 pm
Touring Plans crowd level 6 (predicted 7)
- Pandora – took pictures and walked around & played with drums.
- Na’vi River Journey – arrived to use Fast Pass at 4:05 pm. Waited 5 to 10 minutes.
- Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail – arrived around 4:35 pm. Saw hippo and watched gorillas. Two young gorillas were play fighting. Gorillas much more active than seeing them at the zoo.
- Pretzels and break at Harambe market.
- Kilimanjaro Safaris – arrived to use Fast Pass at 5:30 pm. Waited 5 minutes.
- DINOSAUR – arrived around 6:05 pm. Waited 15 to 20 minutes.
- Expedition Everest – arrived to use Fast Pass at 6:45 pm. Waited 5 minutes.
- Primeval Whirl – arrived to use 4th Fast Pass at 7:05 pm. Waited 5 minutes.
- Discover Trading Company – shopped for gifts at gift shop.
- Flights of Passage – arrived at 7:26. Waited in line for 72 minutes.
Recap: Did everything on plan. Got extra Fast Pass. Flights of Passage was everyone’s favorite ride at Disney. Absolutely incredible!
Monday, February 25. Park to Park tickets.
Universal Studios – arrived by 8:30 am
Touring Plans crowd level 4 (predicted 7)
- Harry Potter Escape from Gringotts – arrived at 9:00 am. Waited in line for 19 minutes.
- Hogwarts Express – King’s Cross – arrived at 9:26 am. Waited in line for 12 minutes.
Universal Islands of Adventure – arrived at 9:45 am by Hogwarts Express
Touring Plans crowd level 7 (predicted 4)
- Harry Potter Forbidden Journey – arrived at 9:51 am. Waited in line for 20 minutes.
- Skull Island King Kong – arrived at 10:23 am. Waited in line for 33 minutes.
- Skipped Spider Man – posted wait times too long.
- Raptor Encounter at Jurassic Park. Pictures with Blue the raptor. We really enjoyed this.
- Hogsmead – toured shops and world.
- Lunch at Three Broomsticks. Two orders of fish and chips, one regular Butterbeer for DS15, one frozen Butterbeer for DD17, and one Dragon Scale draught beer for me.
- The Cat in the Hat ride - no wait.
- Hogwarts Express back to Universal Studios at 12:50 pm.
Universal Studios continued:
3. Arrived back at King’s Cross around 1:05 pm.
4. Men In Black – arrived at 1:12 pm. Waited in line for 17 minutes.
5. Springfield: Home of the Simpsons
a. Lard Lad Donuts – big pink donut
b. Moe’s Tavern – Duff beer for me
6. Diagon Alley – toured shops and world
7. Fast & Furious – minimal wait
8. Revenge of the Mummy – minimal wait
9. Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon – minimal wait
10. Transformers – waited in line about 10 to 15 minutes.
11. ET and Minions lines were too long. Everyone was tired of 3D rides. Left park around 5:40 pm.
12. Dinner outside the park at Universal City Walk - Bread Box Handcrafted Sandwiches. So-so.
13. Left for Airport for our 8:10 pm flight. Arrived in Texas at 10:00 pm.
Recap for Universal parks: Did everything in our plans except Minions, ET, Hippogriff, and Spider Man. Many of the rides are 3D based simulators which can get old after a while. Harry Potter worlds are by far the highlights at Universal.
I would say we packed a lot into our three days. Touring Plans was a big help.