Nothings gonna stop us now! Day 1 trip report

We have been to WDW many times, but this was our first time staying at the Riviera, first time renting points, and the first time bringing DD18’s GF. There were 5 of us in total: me, DH, my DSis, DD18, and DDGF18. We arrived at Epcot at 3:20 PM with BG2 for GotG, an ILL for GotG at 7:50 PM, a LL for Remy at 6:45 PM, a LL for Soarin’ at 4:20 PM, and a dining reservation at San Angel Inn at 4:45 PM. Our first ride was GotG using BG2 and our wait was much longer than we expected. Land Pavillion was next and we did LwtL standby and Soarin’ with LL. We were embarrassingly late for our dinner reservation but they were still able to seat us quickly. I wanted to eat here because I had heard raves about the chocolate fiesta pyramid - and it did not disappoint! While we were stuffing our faces, Remy was down and changed our LL to an anytime. This was fortunate, as we were all too full to move fast enough to get there on time anyway! Next we did GotG with ILL, then SE with LL, TT with LL, and then Remy with LL. We were able to catch most of Harmonius from the bridge between France and UK, but it is not my favorite viewing spot. Overall it was a great first day, but i felt very rushed and would have liked to have more time to soak up the atmosphere. In the future, I would probably get an earlier flight, or do HDDR or Disney Springs as it was a lot of money for 6 hours in the park.


Sounds like a great first day. I always struggle knowing if I shoukd get up extra early to arrive early or take a later flight.


so fun!

I’m so paranoid about flight cancellations and delays now, I always try to take the early flight!


Fabulous first day!

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Day 2 was MK on Sat 1/7/23. We were running a little bit late for EE, but this actually worked to our advantage as the bus driver was able to take us to MK - earlier busses were dropped off at TTC due to road closures for the runDisney event. We walked on Space and Buzz and then did BTMRR standby twice, as it would be down for refurb on our next MK day. We had a 9 AM LL for JC, so we did that next. We then got a 9:55 LL for HM so we were able to do that right away. Our next stop was Sleepy Hollow for waffles and some relaxation at the tables behind the Christmas shop. Next we did Dumbo standby, WtP with a LL, and 7DMT with an ILL. We watched the FoF parade in Frontierland and then did Tiki Room, CBJ, and Pirates with LL. The park was getting busier, so we headed to the Poly to sign up for the waiting list for Trader Sam’s. We enjoyed Dole Whips and pork nachos while waiting at the Poly. We gave up on Trader Sam’s and headed back to MK with an IASW LL for 3:45. Then we had a BOG reservation for 4:35. PP was next with an LL and BTMRR with a LL. We checked in and got our wristbands for the dessert party, and did COP before staking out our FW spot. It was the 3rd time I have seen Enchanted and it is growing on me. The new introductory part about Walt at the beginning is a big improvement. The after dessert party was good, but not spectacular. When the park is open late, the after party loses some value. Ultimately, we do the dessert party for the FW viewing spot. People mover was next, then Laugh Floor, Space with LL, and then Splash with LL. Then bus back to the Riviera.


Day 3 was HS. As you can probably tell from my title, MMRR is one of my favorites! I had some trouble with the park entry gate biometric scanner, but we were still in good shape for EE and walked on MMRR and then TSMM and ASS. We had a 9:05 LL for SDD so that came next. We took a quick totchos break at Woody’s Lunch Box then walked thru Galaxy’s Edge, did standby ST, Mickey’s Vacation Fun and then the 10:45 Indy show. Happy the show included the full finale. Next was MF with LL and then we did the Disney Visa photo shoot at Launch Bay. Our photographer was “earning her ears” and some of our photos are really (unintentionally) funny. We were supposed to be looking at a cute robot and have storm troopers instead. Next was our ILL for Rise, but it was down so we did Muppets first. Rise was up and running after so we did that next, then off to TOT with LL. We were supposed to do RnR with LL but it was down. We had a 3:50 F! Package reservation at Prime Time so we shopped our way over there. Our waitress was really fun. Our DD was caught lying about using her “walkie talkie” at the table so she was put to work - she donned a hat that said “liar, liar sweeper for hire” and was given a broom and dust pan to actually sweep around the restaurant! Waitress also got mad at me for looking at my cellphone-but i couldn’t miss the next LL drop times! Next was Walt Disney presents, TSMM with LL, and MMRR with LL. Then we shopped our way to Fantasmic. It was the first time we had seen the new version and we really liked it! We still had an anytime for RnR so we quickly got in line after the show. We made it to the loading area, but CM told us it wasnt running properly and would probably shut down. He also told us to wait and make sure we got our anytime LL back. Sure enough it shut down and there were CMs with Ipads outside. The anytimes we were given were only good for the next two days (Epcot and AK for us) and weren’t good for any hard to get rides, so I went to a blue umbrella and got them switched to RnR for our last day at DHS.


Day 4 was Epcot on 1-9-23. We took the skyliner to IG. We were on the later side for EE and I had trouble with the park entry finger scanner again. First ride was FEA standby. We walked back to Remy with a 9 AM LL. Next we walked through UK and Canada pavilions. Most of the UK shops were open again! We also got to meet Mary Poppins. After some light calisthenics with Winnie the Pooh outside the Imagination Pavillion, we rode Figment standby. Then it was time for our Soarin LL followed by LwtL, Nemo, and SE - all with immediate LL’s. The LL’S probably only saved us about 20 to 30 minutes total, but it was still very convenient! Next was GotG with BG1. No problems getting in late, but the wait was terrible. They told us 30-45 minutes when we got in line, but it ended up being 110 minutes. Minimal communication. Two announcements in line saying wait would be longer than expected and that was it. We didn’t know whether to bail or not. It was supposed to be our last ride before a much-needed afternoon break, and we were starving! I was able to make a last minute dinner reservation change - switched a 4:20 Chefs de France to a 5 PM Topolino’s, so that gave us more time at the hotel and likely a better meal. I found out from chat later that one track was down, but by the time we got to the front both were running. After that wait, we all desperately needed a break so we split up. DH and I headed to Norway for a snack and then back to hotel for a nap. The others grabbed a quick bite at Connections and went to the pool. Topolino’s was fantastic. I loved the scallops. We were too full for dessert. Headed back to Epcot. We had a 6:55 LL for FEA and then DH, DSis and i made it to AA by the skin of our teeth, while the others went to the department store in Japan. Then we staked out a spot for Harmonius in between the two port of entry shops to WS. This is by far my favorite viewing spot. After Harmonius, we had the deluxe evening hours. We had gotten BG162 for GotG at the 6 PM drop and we went there first. Wait was not bad at all and then we did TT and then 3 Caballeros. We made the mistake of walking the wrong way as the WS was blocked off between Norway and France, so we had to backtrack and walk on the other side instead. We were completely exhausted by this point! We still could have ridden Remy if we wanted to, but we headed for the Skyliner instead.

One important takeaway is to remember that despite Disney’s flexibility in allowing late entry, a BG is not the same as an anytime LL and the wait increases throughout the day. In hindsight, we should have done the first GotG earlier in the day.


Day 5 was AK on 1-10-23. We didn’t really need Genie plus for AK, but we were all tired and hoped it would make our day easier and shorter. We were towards the back of the pack for EE and we walked on Everest. Next was Navi with a 9 AM LL. Then we had a little bit of time to watch the Tam Tam drummers and shop in Africa before the 10:30 Lion King. The LK show was better than I remembered and I really enjoyed seeing the tumble monkeys again. Then we did KS with a LL. Our best Safari ever! We got stuck on the savanna area because one of the other trucks was waiting for a tow. The giraffes were so close! Next was Gorilla Falls trail and then our ILL for FOP. We had trouble at the tap and the CM said it was because we had an overlapping Dinosaur LL and made us delete it. I realized later that we were not charged for the ILL for our entire party, so I think that I made a mistake when booking FOP and that is more likely why it wasn’t working. Next up was lunch at Tusker House. We hadn’t been to TH since pre-covid and we were happy to see it was back to being a buffet. The characters were cute and food was good, but I had forgotten how loud it is. After lunch we did the Maharajah Trek and then the 3:30 Feathered Friends in Flight show. I really like that show! We had a LL for EE and then we did the 4:30 PM Nemo show. Then we had a LL for Dinosaur and then we did ITTBAB. The theater for ITTBAB was completely full. I have never seen it that crowded. Usually AK empties out by dinner time. We watched the Tree Awakenings for a bit and then bus back to Riviera. I dont know why I always think I will get out of AK earlier than I do??? We took a short break at the hotel and then headed for Disney Springs. We ate at Polite Pig on liner recommendations and we were very pleased. No reservations needed and not a lot of $ either.


Day 6 was our second MK day on 1-11-23. We were near the front for EE even though I still struggled with the finger scanner. We walked on Space and Buzz. Then did JC with a 9 AM LL. Then we left the park for a 10 AM reservation at Kona Cafe. The macadamia nut pancakes are still my fave! We had a leisurely breakfast and upon returning to MK caught the end of the 11:25 Dapper Dans. Casey’s pianist started a couple minutes late so we were able to see his entire performance. He took requests so we suggested something from Tangled and DH requested “Blood on the Saddle”. He was really fun to watch! We then rode HM with a LL, did HOP, and then UtS with LL. We got on the RR in Fantasyland and rode it all the way around, getting off at Main Street station our 2nd time there. We then did COP and the peoplemover. We then split up for an afternoon break. DH and I went to the Enchanted Rose at GF and then napped at the Contemporary. Everyone else went back to the Riviera. We met up for dinner at Steakhouse 71 and then watched Enchantment from the Contemporary. I didn’t like watching it from there, but everyone else did. We went back to MK and just barely made our LL for PP. I again had trouble with the fingerprint scanners, but the CM took pity on me and finally turned it off. Then we had a LL for Splash and a LL for Pirates. It was our last ever ride on Splash. The jumping fountains weren’t jumping and the turtles didn’t move at all, but we still enjoyed it. Next was Tiki Room, CBJ, and Mickey’s Philharmagic. Deluxe evening hours started and we did WtP and got in line for 7DMT. Our wait was 32 mins. It is the only time i have ever ridden it standby. It was a lot of fun in the barrel room when we got snow white to appear on the ceiling. It seemed like the line was much shorter when we got off, so I would suggest waiting a bit before getting in line. I definitely preferred the deluxe hours at MK to Epcot. Everyone seemed much happier and it wasnt as rushed. We did Buzz again and then left, but could have done more if we wanted.


Day 7 was our last day and our 2nd day at DHS on 1-12-23. We were at the head of the pack for EE and walked on MMRR and TSMM. Then did SDD with an 8:30 AM LL. Somehow scored a 9:35 LL for MF. Did ST and Muppets standby and then MF with LL. Then we headed back to Riviera to finish packing and our 12:10 reservation at Topolino’s. The sour cream waffles were fantastic, as were the character interactions. I stacked some LL’s for our afternoon. We did a 2:50 ToT, an anytime RnR, a 3:05 MMRR, and a 3:50 TSMM. Then it was time to head back to the Riviera. Of course our flight was delayed so we hung out in the Riviera lobby for an extra hour before getting an Uber to MCO. See you real soon!