Help me figure out a mid-day break


#1

First-timer planning a 2-day trip for November. (Followed by 4 day cruise)

I’d appreciate some thoughts on my plan, specifically re: a mid-day break from MK.

We’re staying at Coronado Springs and our first day is a full day, park-open-to-park-close tour de force of MK. I want to get there early to explore Tomorrowland with minimal waits, and I want to be there at the end for fireworks.

I have young kids, 7 and 9, and my 7yo has ADHD and some generalized anxiety around large crowds. I’m thinking some sort of mid-day break from being on our feet, on a schedule, and around a ton of people would be a wise investment in a pleasant evening.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get the exact FP windows that I wanted, and so the break is shorter than I wanted. I have us leaving at 2:00 and returning at 4:00. We probably won’t have time to swim during the break, and the Coronado feature pool is closed anyways, so I was thinking of sitting down in the A/C, having a drink, and letting the kids do some screen time.

My concerns are:

  1. MK to Coronado looks like a long trek. Even with a Minnievan it looks like at least 40 minutes of the break just in transit, right?

  2. Tom Sawyer closes at 5, so this gives us about 45 minutes max, including the raft ride. I think my kid would love the unstructured nature of TSI and I don’t think this is enough time.

Given this TP, what would you change? https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3255728

(Note: it shows a ton of FP reservations, but only 3 are actual FP+. The rest are modeling the use of the DAS card. I noted in comments which is which. I used the waits-per-time-of-day graphs to estimate the DAS return times)

Questions:

  1. Should I bring the kid’s tablets with me, take the monorail to a different resort, and find a quiet bar to hang out in for an hour instead?

  2. Realistically speaking, how much time should I expect to travel from the middle of MK to our door at Coronado Springs, using Minnievan?

  3. What else could we do in the middle of the day to get away from noise and people and heat, that will give the kids a chance to zone out?

Thanks for any pointers you have!


#2

It is a good idea to take a quiet break in the middle of the day., especially if you are there for the first time. And you are correct, running back to the hotel will take too long!

If you can’t squeeze in taking the monorail (or boat) to a close by resort, then you will most likely find some quiet on Tom Sawyer Island. (You don’t mention the crowd levels, but the island is not the most popular attraction!) When we were last on the island it was three years ago, so the rocking chairs may no longer be there. But hopefully there are some places to quietly sit while your 7 and 9 year old get some freedom! And if you get to Tom Sawyer Island a little earlier than you had hoped, you can run around and explore for longer.


#3

You are really trying to pack a lot in there. If I was you I’d cut out a few things and take a 4-5 hour break. I honestly think you’ll be exhausted, and I’d expect high crowds since it’s not a party day so people will want to see HEA.

If you don’t want to do that, I’d say a break at a monorail resort is your best bet rather than going back to your own hotel.


#4

IMHO you might want to consider removing: caroussel, tea party and barnstormer and either astro orbiter or magic carpets. These are not very special and/or typical theme park rides that you can do anywhere and your plan is very full…


#5

If I was you I’d cut out a few things and take a 4-5 hour break

The only way that works is if we cut out an entire land. I don’t think it makes sense to walk over the entire property, walking past all sorts of cool things the kids want to do and constantly saying “sorry, that didn’t make the Tier 1 cut list”.

I’ll look at cutting out Fantasyland altogether (except for 7DMT). That’s the only area I can imagine skipping and not really regretting it.

IMHO you might want to consider removing: caroussel, tea party and barnstormer and either astro orbiter or magic carpets. These are not very special and/or typical theme park rides that you can do anywhere and your plan is very full…

Most everything has a reason, although the carousel is definitely marked as optional.

The purpose of Astro and Tea Party is to kill time while we’re waiting for a DAS return time on a busier attraction. For instance, I can check in with the DAS at Speedway and while the kids spend the 15 minute wait doing a walk-on at Astro rather than waiting in line for 15 minutes. Same thing applies for Ariel’s Grotto; I can check in while walking to BS, we can do BS as a walk-on, and then enter the FP+ queue for Ariel when we pass by it again.

If the predicted wait times are inaccurate, and things don’t fall into play so nicely, then I can definitely skip those midway style rides without changing the overall structure of the TP. I may spend a little more time in lines in that case, and see a few fewer attractions, but wouldn’t miss anything major.

So while I agree its a lot, I think the DAS makes it workable. Do you think differently?


#6

Definitely makes sense, although I forgot to mention I would cut the Speedway too LOL :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

I am sure it’s workable, but I am not anywhere near an expert like a lot of the other people around, this is just an opinion based on a single trip (3 MK days). I guess I would just maybe have a list of things ready in your mind that you are OK with cutting if the need arises. I will also be there that day so I have looked into the CL prediction a lot and if TP has it right CL is 4 and it should go well (at least that is my hope). Plus, you have only 2 park days and after that you go on a cruise so I assume you’ll be able to get some rest on the boat. :slight_smile:

Oh and I wouldn’t cut Fantasyland altogether, it’s really nice to walk around and some of the dark rides are really nice and you can go see Gaston and challenge him to a push-up contest (really, no, don’t do that…)


#7

I forgot to mention I would cut the Speedway too LOL :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Oh lord, I would if I could. But I can guarantee you that the kids are going to see it and want to do it, no matter how much I tell them there are far better things we could be doing instead.

I want to avoid the fight more than I want to avoid that ride :slight_smile:


#8

It might be worth the fight! My kids were 7 and 10 when we did Speedway. They hated it. It is the one ride in all of WDW that we are all in agreement about never doing again!


#9

It might be worth the fight! My kids were 7 and 10 when we did Speedway. They hated it. It is the one ride in all of WDW that we are all in agreement about never doing again!

Why? Were they expecting the ability to drive themselves and bummed that it was more or less on a set track?

Give me some details here and if I can talk them out of it, I totally will!


#10

It’s super loud.

It’s super stinky.

Kids can’t reach the pedals. Kids of a certain height aren’t supposed to drive, just ride.

Driving is hard! Coordination-wise, and strength for steering wise.

Kids can’t really see where they’re going.

My car-loving DS was 3 when we went, but my then DS7 and DD9 weren’t impressed either. Overall, the stink and noise weren’t worth the experience.

HTH!


#11

I agree with all of what @lottendpr said. The kids struggled to reach the pedals. The steering wheel was ridiculously hard to turn for me. The kids couldn’t move it at all. The cars moved slowly and were constantly banging against the rail. It was intensely uncomfortable and super hot. We would never do it again.


#12

I second this. If you cut Arcade, Treehouse, TSI, Astro, and move up HM, 7DMT, Carrousel, and push Tink later, does that get you a 4 hr break? Philharmagic is in a theatre, so would be a decent wind-down. We also didn’t enjoy it so personally would skip but I know others love it. 1 hr travel, 2 hr break, 1 hr travel back is ideal for a quality break.


#13

BTW this, Magic Carpets, and Dumbo are the same ride. Different vehicles. And Astro is on a 2nd story, so higher up, but otherwise, same thing.


#14

If you cut Arcade, Treehouse, TSI, Astro, and move up HM, 7DMT, Carrousel, and push Tink later, does that get you a 4 hr break?

I appreciate the suggestions.

TSI is “must do” for us because I think my son will both enjoy, and need, an unstructured and less crowded break from standing in lines and waiting around. That’s also why I’m hesitant to cut Treehouse; it’s a chance to climb and explore that I think would be good for us.

Unfortunately, I think I’m locked into the 7DMT spot. Don’t see any other FP+ options until like 9pm.

I can find different FP+ options for Adventureland though. I’m working on a plan that cuts Speedway, Tea Party, Barnstormer, and Ariel’s Grotto so that I head directly to Adventureland after Space Mountain. I’ve moved TSI to the morning, right when it opens at 11, and I’m looking at a different lunch configuration that gets me to 7DMT at the exact start of my FP+ window.

I’m currently around 160 minutes for the break and I think I can get it to 180. Moving TSI to the morning helps because I can return later in the day with less to do before dinner. If I can move my dinner ADR back by 15-30 minutes I could cut Peoplemover too. It sounds cool but not a deal breaker.

I feel good w/ a 3 hour break. Gives us time for a short swim if desired. 4 hours seems long given I only have 2 days at the parks, and 2 is just too short. Using the Minnievans instead of buses will help keep the travel times low.

I appreciate the feedback. Back to the TP planner I go…


#15

https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3282182

Got the break to 3 hours. Cut out most of the “midway” style rides and everything we had in Fantasyland (except 7DMT). Also shrunk lunch to 45 minutes b/c Harbor House has mobile ordering.

Was able to add Jungle Cruise (optional, if time allows) and extended TSI to 70 minutes.

As much as I hate to scale back, I think the break is good advice. I’d rather be relaxed and enjoy a scaled back plan than make everyone miserable. Can’t do more than 3 hours but it should work.

I see this as a training run. Next year, if we go back, I’m gonna project manage the :poop: out of our days, and the kids are getting “breaks are for wimps” tattooed on their arms.


#16

Concerning your 2 hour break, I would have you give some thought to catching the boat from MK to Wilderness Lodge and having either a quick service meal or table service meal at Whispering Canyon and then relaxing in their lobby. It is truly lovely with comfy seats and a nice ambiance. I believe there is also a quieter seating area on the second floor, but don’t hold me to that. The boat ride to and from MK will be like another ride and you can explore a new resort without having a long travel back to your resort.


#17

Coronado Springs is actually located in a great area for getting to and from MK. The drive is fairly quick. Enjoy your breaks!


#18

That’s exactly what we’re planning to do this December… rest at Wilderness Lodge, enjoy the decorations, eat dinner at WC, and then back to MK for the evening.
I sure wish WC had dinner starting slightly earlier than 5 - then we could really just have two meals that day, and lots of snacks. Oh well.


#19

I love this :rofl::rofl::rofl: