Universal and Walt Disney World Trip Report March 16, 2019 to March 24, 2019 - Part 1

Universal and Walt Disney World Trip Report
March 16, 2019 to March 24, 2019

This is a summary of our trip for our family of four - DH, DD15, DD12 and me. This was our 7th trip in nine years and our first trip in two years. We went to Maui last year and absolutely loved it. Because there are other places that we want to go this is likely our last Orlando visit for quite a while especially since DH does not like amusement parks and he spent most of this trip at the hotels while I took our daughters to the parks. As a result, I spent more on this trip than I normally would have to try to pack as much in as possible.

Part 1 – Universal Orlando Resort and then Caribe Royale Orlando Resort

Since this report is long, here are the highlights:

Hard Rock Hotel

  • Love the five minute walk to the parks
  • Love Express Passes since they eliminate the need to plan every second of your day
  • Love the Kids’ Suite
  • Had a bad experience at the pool bar but the manager made it right
  • Great meal at The Kitchen
  • Loved ice cream cones at Emack & Bolio’s
  • Club Level – drinks were good, having to show a driver’s license for every drink was annoying, breakfast was good, evening appetizers were not enough for a meal. Club hours were too limited. It was often closed when we wanted to get something
  • Weather was a bit too cloudy and cool for swimming but the hot tub was enjoyable

Universal Parks

  • Parks were much more crowded than they have been during the 3rd week of March in past years
  • Loved Hulk at night
  • Loved the Hogwarts projection show
  • Disliked the Fast & Furious ride
  • Found more photographers and photo booths than we have in the past.
  • Loved Volcano Bay, especially the Aqua Coaster
  • Mardi Gras parade is still really fun
  • Weather was cloudy and cool (low to mid 60s) for most of our visit. The one sort of rainy day kept the crowds down and was the most enjoyable park day.
  • Prices have really gone up. For example chocolate frogs are now $12 each

Caribe Royale

  • This is a fantastic value (especially with a Mousesavers discount)
  • Love the newly renovated 2 bedroom villas

Yacht Club Club Level

  • Resort is beautiful and love the look of the newly renovated rooms
  • Club level is vastly superior to Hard Rock Hotel’s
  • Great service, hours, food and drinks
  • Our room had a great view but the walk was LONG!
  • Bus service back from MK was easy and efficient

Disney Parks

  • Parks were dramatically more crowded than our last visit two years ago
  • We bought three extra FPP/day that were available to club level guests and these made our stay extremely enjoyable
  • Standby waits for all headliners seemed to be 60+ starting early in the day
  • By 1:00 pm very few FPP were available (I did not try to get the “drops” at certain times however)
  • Pandora - I really loved the new FOP ride but I found Pandora to be claustrophobic and poorly laid out for crowd control
  • Toy Story Land - Loved Slinky Dog Dash but the ride was really short and the standby line (we did not have to wait in it) looked brutal with nothing interesting about it and very little shade
  • Magic Kingdom - I really enjoyed the new fireworks show
  • We lucked out and did not have any issues with ride breakdowns or MDE issues. We did notice other rides having issues after we had ridden them so we were happy to have missed those problems

Day 1 (3/16/19) - Travel and Volcano Bay
We left NYC on an 8:05 am flight out of JFK and landed at MCO early at 10:45 am. We arrived at the Hard Rock before noon. Everything about our morning went smoothly.

We made it to Volcano Bay by 1:00 pm. We made reservations (60 minute wait) for the Krakatau Aqua Coaster and had lunch. DD15 and I ate at Bambu. DD15 had the quinoa edamame burger and I had the Mahi sandwich. DD12 picked up carne asada tacos at the Feasting Frog. The food was excellent but at Bambu they messed up our order so we had to return the veggie burger since it was covered in mayo when it was not supposed to be. The service was very slow. We were the only ones in line and it took 5 to10 minutes to get food. The food was excellent however.

The rides were amazing - especially Krakatau Aqua Coaster (the acceleration on the uphill portions was exciting), Honu and Ika Moana of Honu Ika Moana. TeAwa The Fearless River was a huge hit since we thought this was another entrance for the lazy river but were quickly told to put on life jackets. This was one of my favorite parts of the day. We loved the waves in the river. The water was also warm which was nice because the temperatures had started to fall by the time we discovered it.

We hiked up over 200 steps to the Kala and Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides. We did not realize that these were drop slides until we got up there. DD12 decided not to ride. I rode and was scared silly but at least the ride ends in a pool so it does not hurt. DD15 was the only one to ride Ko’okiri Body Plunge and she did that twice because it was so much fun. We loved the raft rides. My DDs did both of the Ohyah and Ohno Drop Slides and said they were fun while I was checking on DH who stayed at the hotel.

Waturi Beach was closed for the day so we did not get to experience that.

We absolutely loved our afternoon there. Due to the weather forecast it was not that crowded. The forecast had been for rain but it did not start raining until we got on the shuttle bus to return to the hotel around 5:15 pm. It was in the high 70s with some sun so the weather was good. The park is beautiful and the staff was extremely friendly. We found that the TapuTapus worked well.

My only complaint was the completely insufficient shower facilities. Only one locker room was open and that locker room only had three showers for all of the women in the park. A 30 minute wait for a quick shower was a bit annoying.

We will definitely be going back since we loved it there.

https://imgur.com/a/9VmTTsD - This about 1:00pm on Saturday afternoon. Notice how there are hardly any people around.

Hotel -
We stayed in the Future Rock Star suite on the club level at HRH. It was our first visit in the renovated rooms. We have stayed in the kids’ suite five times before. The decor was fun (especially the lights over the kids’ beds) but we miss the table in the kids’ room. We don’t normally stay in club level but I did not feel like dealing with groceries for this trip. The drinks were good but the hours seemed really limited. We enjoyed breakfast. It would be hard to make a meal out of the evening appetizers. They were very strict about requiring an ID to get a drink. They said it was not to confirm age rather it was to make sure that people were not sharing room keys.

https://imgur.com/a/Yj40yHt - Kids’ Suite pictures

Dinner - Since we had a busy day we wanted something easy for dinner so we chose the pool bar at HRH. We have eaten there during past trips and like it. Because the weather had turned rainy and chilly it was only about a quarter full. Despite that it took forever. It took 10 minutes to see the waiter for the first time. We ordered drinks and dinner. Another 20 minutes passed and we still did not even have waters. Our waiter said that he gave them to another table by mistake but he did not replace them. I went over to the bar to get the drinks from our waiter who was talking with another waiter. He finally brought the waters and my wine over but not DH’s drink. Another 10 minutes passed and there was still no drink for DH. I went back over to the bar and complained in a polite but insistent way. A couple of minutes later there was still no drink for DH but a manager came over and apologized and offered to pay for our dinner. Normally I would not accept that but a 45 minute wait for drinks in a not crowded restaurant in an extremely expensive hotel is unacceptable. About 10 minutes later we finally got our food. DH gave up on his Margarita. We had considered going to the parks but it was after 8:00 pm by this point so we gave up. An annoying situation was made up by the apology and the free dinner. We had ice cream from Emack & Bolio’s and it was fantastic.

Day 2 (3/17/19) - Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure (“IOA”)
Only Universal Studios had early admission during our stay. We walked to the park and arrived around 8:05 am. There was a modest line to get in but it moved quickly and we were in the park within about 5 minutes. It was cloudy and cool (in the low 60s for a high).

We love the Harry Potter areas of the park.

We rode Gringotts with about a 20 minute wait. We did some spells. Since it often has a wait even with Express Passes we rode Despicable Me next with about a 5 minute wait. Next we rode Mummy with no wait. After that we rode Hogwarts Express (“HEX”) back to IOA. DH met us and we had lunch. All except DD12 picked up lunch at “Doc” Sugrue’s. DD12 got chicken tenders at Fire-Eater’s. Each line was about 20 minutes long. The food was good but not exceptional.

We only go to the parks during the third week in March. The parks were significantly more crowded than they have ever been for our visits. For example usually there is no wait in Hog’s Head pub for butter beer. This time there were about 20 people in line. We wound up getting some frozen butter beer from a cart with about a 10 minute wait.

In the afternoon we rode Caro-Seuss-el, Jurassic Park, HRRR x2 (a first for DD12 who had not wanted to ride it on previous trips), Dr. Doom, Spider-Man, Hulk x2, and Popeye (it was cold so there were very few riders so it was not that much fun). We strategically placed our ponchos so we did not get that wet. We went back to HRH to spend time in the pool (DDs) and hot tub (me). The wine from the club level was appreciated.

For dinner we ate at The Kitchen at the HRH and it was wonderful. The service was perfect. We went back to US. We rode Despicable Me. We had a lovely meet with Snowdiz and watched the Mardi Gras parade with her. The DDs caught a ton of beads. We went back to Diagon Alley after the parade and got butter beer ice cream and went back to the hotel to fall asleep.

Day 3 (3/18/19) - Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure (“IOA”)
The park boat was arriving just as went downstairs so we took that and arrived at US around 8:00 am. We started the day at Gringotts with about a 15 minute wait. We took the HEX back to IOA. We rode FJoHP standby with less than a 20 minute wait. The pictures were down so the attendant led us right back to the front of the line to ride again. The cameras still were not working but at least we got a second ride. The longest wait of our trip was Hippogriff (43 minute wait with EP due to breakdown). We met up with DH to ride Spider-Man. DD12 and I had lunch at Circus McGurkus because DD12 really wanted to eat there. My salad (Tropical Grilled Chicken Salad Combo) was excellent. It was not listed on the menu but I knew to ask for it after reading about it on touringplans.com. DH and DD15 ate at Thunder Falls Terrace.

After lunch we rode Cat in the Hat, MIB, Simpson’s, ET (this ride is looking tired), took some pictures in the ET photo booth and rode the Jimmy Fallon ride. DH went back to the hotel. The DDs and I rode HRRR. After that it was back to the hotel for more pool time in the chilly weather and more “free” drinks from the club level.

We had dinner at Cowfish with only a 15 minute wait. The food was excellent. The DDs and I rode Hulk for the first time at night. It was a totally different experience and we loved it. After that we went to watch the projection show on Hogwarts for the first time. That was really amazing. Once again we had Emack & Bolio’s ice cream for dessert.

Hogwarts Projection Show

Day 4 (3/19/19) - Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure (“IOA”) and transfer to Caribe Royale
It was a somewhat rainy day. We thought this was going to be disappointing but it wound up working in our favor because it did not rain that much and the crowds were much lower. We arrived at US around 8:00 am. Once again we started with Gringotts which had less than a 10 minute wait. DD15 bought a Fluffy puppet that we had shipped to the front of the park. We did some spells in Diagon Alley. We took the HEX back to IOA. Because it was cold we tried the warm butter beer (from Hog’s Head Pub with no wait). That was delicious. I like it better than the frozen butter beer. We rode FJoHP standby with about a 10-15 minute wait (cameras still were not working). DD12 bought some candy (also sent to the front of the park).

We rode Kong in the standby line for the first time. A scare actor really startled DD12. The ride skipped the outside part due to the rain. We rode the Seuss Trolley that had a relatively long wait (about 20 minutes) because they were only running one side.

We rode HEX back to US. We ate lunch in the Simpsons food court. The turkey sandwich was quite good. DD12 wanted to ride the Simpson’s Ride. DD15 and I went to ride MIB but it was down. We waited for DD12 to get off Simpsons. DD12 won the Marge Simpson doll that she wanted. By this time MIB was back up so we rode that twice.

We rode Fast & Furious for the first time ever. We had EP but I think that line was longer than standby. When the lines merged and everyone was packed into very small spaces with long waits I felt very uncomfortable. The actual ride was mildly interesting for me but it was one and done for me.

We rode Transformers. For me it is basically the same ride as Spider-Man but much rougher. So much so that it made me feel a bit nauseous. The DDs went to ride HRRR while I went to pick up our pictures from the photo plan (I had purchased a Black Friday special that came with prints including a poster). I had to go to a special location to pick up the poster. While I waited I noticed that they had automated photo booths with fun backgrounds.

The DDs headed over to IOA so DD12 could ride Ripsaw Falls. I met up with them to head over to Hogsmeade. The DDs rode FJoHP one last time. I skipped it this time. I waited for them on the benches near Ollivanders and unfortunately dropped my new umbrella there and did not realize it until we were back at the hotel.

Hotel - Caribe Royale
It was time to leave so that we could move to our next hotel, Caribe Royale. It is a very affordable hotel with two bedroom villas near WDW. This was our fourth stay. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that they have completely renovated the units. The best part was the completely redesigned bathroom. For everything else the layout was the same, just now everything was brand new. The only slight issue was that the new paint was causing the front door to stick. We had to body slam it to get the door open. We had a good, if unmemorable meal at the hotel restaurant, Tropicale.

Day 5 (3/20/19) – Rest day
We went up to The Villages to spend the day with my parents. It was a great, relaxing day.

Part 2 - Walt Disney World

Yacht Club Club Level
Checked out of Caribe Royale and dropped bags at Yacht Club around 9:00 am. We were staying in the Club Level so I purchased the three extra fast passes per day for $50/person. The club level concierge made our FPP reservations 90 days prior to our check-out date. I just gave her the list and she made them and send me an email with the times. We got everything we wanted. All of the club level fast passes could be tier 1 but they could not overlap with the regular FPP. Everyone in the room had to buy the extra FPP. DH only planned one park day so I wasted 2 days of his extra FPP. Since I really wanted to ride FOP I had originally booked the Nights of Adventure tour at AK for ca. $225/person with the Disney Visa discount. I spent $150 / person to get 3 extra FPP/day for three days and cancelled the tour so this made financial sense for us.

Day 6 (3/21/19) - Animal Kingdom
After dropping off our bags we drove to Animal Kingdom. We learned that we need to use caution when using Waze. Since there was a backup getting into the Animal Kingdom parking lot it directed us towards Animal Kingdom Lodge. I thought there might be a different entrance coming from the Lodge. Instead it directed us to the bus and cast member entrance. I explained what happened to the security guard and he said we need to add “parking lot” to the Waze requests. We turned around and headed back to the line for the parking lot. Fortunately this detour only wasted less than five minutes.

We arrived around 9:30 am. We caught the end of the Winged Encounters show. https://imgur.com/a/OQaEhYh (video is in slow motion as instructed by the CM)

Since our first fast pass was not until 10:00 am we decided to do the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail first. We loved the birds and the hippo and of course the gorillas. I asked about the upside down nests made by the Taveta golden weaver. The CM explained that the males of the species build the nests for approval by the female. If she does not approve she takes the nest apart while the male watches. The CM said that the males often need to build a nest three or more times. https://imgur.com/a/9wX8R6Q

Other Gorilla Falls pictures: https://imgur.com/a/OtQcFwO

We had a 10:00 am FP for Flight of Passage (“FoP”) so we decided to head over there. We thought we could get there near the entrance to the Festival of the Lion King but we were told that way was exit only due to crowds. So we walked around the other way. The Pandora area is really neat but I found the narrow walk ways and the crowds to be uncomfortable. It is odd that you have to wait several minutes to cross back and forth between Na’vi River and FOP since the FOP line blocks the path. We rode FoP with FPP (no wait at all) and it was really excellent. Even my husband who does not like rides or heights enjoyed it. We were happy to have a FPP because the wait was 180 minutes when we arrived.

Since it was almost 11:00 am we walked over to Na’vi River Journey for our 11:00 am FPP (also no wait). This was nice but more like It’s a Small World than anything. I was glad that I had watched Avatar with my daughters about a month before our trip. I think these two rides were more meaningful with that background.

We had lunch around 11:25 am at Satu’li Canteen. We were happy we were there early with no wait since it seemed like it would have been a much more crowded place closer to noon. We all had a some version of a “bowl”. My chicken bowl was excellent. We found a table outside. All of us commented that it was nice to eat using real silverware from a reusable bowl.

It was close to noon so we thought we would try to see the noon showing of The Lion King. Annoyingly we were not able to use the “exit” to Pandora that we had unsuccessfully tried to enter on the way to Pandora. We asked a security guard and we had to once again wait to cross the FOP line and fight our way back through the crowds streaming into Pandora to get out. The crowd control seemed poorly thought out and border line dangerous to me. We made it to Lion King right at noon but missed getting into that show by 9 people. Pandora pictures: https://imgur.com/a/WvjCDlv

Since that did not work out we decided to use our noon FPP for Kilimanjaro Safaris (less than 5 minute wait). I had thought that the animals would not be that active relative to the morning but I was pleasantly surprised. It was a bright sunny day but the temperature was in the high 60s and the humidity was low. We were happy to see the baby giraffes and baby rhino as well as the female lion. Safari pictures (lots): https://imgur.com/a/tsFZlfl

It was close to 1:00 pm and we tried again to see The Lion King. We were not sure we were going to make it in but we did (we were sitting in the next to the last row). We enjoyed it but the small child having a complete meltdown in the row in front of us for the last 10 minutes of the show was a bit of a downer.

We decided to make our way over for our 1:00 pm FPP for Expedition Everest (“EE”) after stopping for ice cream and pictures. My DH did not ride this one but he walked through the line and took the chicken exit. We waited for the front row. My daughters love this ride but I still have a hard time with the backwards part. I had originally hoped that they could ride a second time using the single rider line but even that had a 60 minute wait.

After EE we headed over to Dinoland because we had a 2:00 pm FPP for Dinosaur. This area of the park seemed really hot even though the temperature was only about 70. We enjoyed this ride but not as much as the others. My DH especially did not like being tossed around so much.

Since our last FPP was at 3:00 pm and we had time to kill we decided to walk the Maharajah Jungle Trek. This was nice but not as good as the Gorilla Falls Trail.

We finished our day with the 3:00 pm Finding Nemo - The Musical show using FPP. I liked the puppets but we all agreed that the show was at least 10 minutes too long.

It was a short drive back to the Yacht Club (took less time than it did to get back to our car).

Yacht Club
We had our room number (5239) so we found the elevator but our magic bands were not letting us up to the 5th floor. I found someone at the entrance with an iPad. He accompanied us to the 5th floor and introduced me to one of the concierge staff. Apparently this type of issue is not unusual. He reset our bands. I grabbed a glass of wine and headed down to our room. Despite having requested a room around 5177 (great view near the elevators and club) our room was all the way at the opposite end of the hotel (it did have a nice view though). When we made it down there most of our magic bands would not open the door. So back down the really long walk I went (at least with a glass of wine) to talk to my new friend at the concierge. He reset the bands again and walked with me down to our room. We finally got the bands to work.

Here are some room pictures - the food pictures are from afternoon snack service: https://imgur.com/a/N6OO6wP

If you wanted to there is enough food for dinner. Each night there was a hearty option such as chili or meatball sliders. For grownup beverages they had red, white and sparkling wine as well as beer choices. On Sunday morning they were serving mimosas.

After enjoying a few appetizers (bacon wrapped scallops were my favorite) we went down to the pool. It was cool out so I found the adult only hot tub. One hot tub was closed and another was filled to capacity with small children. The adult hot tub was nice. It has high walls so you cannot see the rest of the pool from there (either good or bad depending on your goals).

The only reservation I had for that night was for 8:30 pm at Beaches and Cream. Since that was too late to eat dinner for us we tried to get in at Ale and Compass and were told that it was a 90 minute wait. Since that did not work we went to Crew’s Cup and were seated right away. It is a bar with lots of sports on TVs around the room. Right next to our table the TV was showing college wrestling. That made for unusual dinner entertainment. They had fantastic Mai Tai’s. Our meals were great too. The only flaw was a lack of vegetarian options. DD15 wound up eating two servings of the kids pasta with marinara sauce. I had the herb-marinated skirt steak, DH had the Captain’s Platter and DD12 also had the kids pasta. We also had the Yachtsman Signature Bread. Here is a picture of the Captain’s Platter: https://imgur.com/a/0GWUwNe

At Beaches and Cream I shared the Brownie À la Mode with DD12 and DH and DD15 got ice cream cones. It was a great day even for my DH who generally dislikes most things about WDW.

Day 7 (3/22/19) - Hollywood Studios
We walked from Yacht Club and arrived at park around 9:05 am. We were delayed because I left my phone in the room and I had to send the DDs back to get it - because of our room location that took close to 10 minutes. We wanted to ride Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster (“RNRRC”) standby but it already had a 75 minute wait. We decided to ride Tower of Terror instead with a 25 minute wait. It was a beautiful morning and the flowers near the entrance were awesome! https://imgur.com/a/nJjHJca

We walked over to Toy Story Land and used our 9:30 am FPP for Slinky Dog Dash with about a 10 minute wait. We thought the ride was cute and fun but it was very short. The standby line for that was over 120 minutes with very little shade so we were grateful to have the FPP for it. https://imgur.com/a/rtM7adx

Since we had time before our 10:30 am FPP we watched the Voyage of The Little Mermaid show. We thought that was cute. DD12 bought some cute Mickey ears and I was surprised by the cost ($28). After that we used our 10:30 am FPP for Toy Story Mania. That ride is always a favorite of ours. Right after that we used our 11:30 am FPP for Alien Swirling Saucers. Since I was worried about spinning I rode separately from my girls so they could spin as much as they wanted. That ride is cute but not that interesting for any of us. https://imgur.com/a/7kRuRyU

Since we wanted to avoid crowds we ate right afterwards at the ABC Commissary. It was already starting to get crowded so we waited close to 10 minutes. Fortunately we found a nice table outside to eat. Unfortunately about midway through our meal a large (15+) group of teenagers found places to sit that completely circled us. Their very loud conversations all around us were very annoying, especially since I had a to take a quick work-related call.

After lunch we rode RNRRC using our 12:30 pm FPP. Since we were there we saw the 1:00 pm Beauty and the Beast show. We all really enjoyed the show. After that we used our 1:30 pm FPP to ride Tower of Terror. When DD12 was 5 we took her on that ride and she was so scared that I could feel her heart pumping so strongly. She now loves that ride. She and DH have been watching the old Twilight Zone series so that is making the ride even more fun.

We love the Muppets so we watched Muppet Vision 3D and enjoyed it very much. After that we used our last FPP for Star Tours. It was different version than I had seen before so that was fun. We were happy to see the March of the First Order on the way out. We were ready for some pool time. https://imgur.com/a/Sh29FYx

They were testing the new gondolas on our way (we walked) back to Yacht Club. https://imgur.com/a/Qnq0ifv

At Stormalong bay I rode the slide. It was nice but slow. There was a mother duck and 8 of her ducklings right by the exit to the slide. There was also another pair of ducks mating in another section of the pool despite the efforts of the lifeguards to scare them away. All of that did not seem that sanitary.

We enjoyed some cocktails and appetizers in the club lounge. I did not try them but they had meatball sliders as well as light appetizers.

We had a 6:40 pm dinner reservation at Yachtsman Steakhouse. We had to wait about 10 minutes to be seated. DD15 was ecstatic to learn that if you ask they have both vegetarian and vegan menus. None of us had steak and that seemed to greatly disappoint our waiter. Our meals were good but probably not good enough to justify the very expensive cost. DD15 had an ice cream cone at Beaches and Cream and the rest of us had club level desserts.

Day 8 (3/23/19) - Magic Kingdom
Weather - It was a perfect weather day - not a cloud in the sky, with a high around 80 and no humidity. It was a perfect day for pictures.

Magic Kingdom (“MK”) had a 8:00 am opening so we set our alarms to get up and try to make RD. We took an Uber to the Contemporary - the driver dropped us off in the parking lot just to the left of the guard house. We missed the opening show because we arrived at MK at 8:01 am.

We wanted to get in the rides that we wanted to ride twice during the day so we rode Space Mountain first with less than a 10 minute wait. After that we hustled over to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (“BTMRR”) and rode that with about a 25 minute wait. After that we wanted to ride the rides for which we did not have FPP. We rode Jungle Cruise with less than a 5 minute wait. Then we rode Pirates of the Caribbean with less than a 10 minute wait. Then we rode the Tea Cups with a 5 minute wait. After that we used our 9:00 am FPP for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (walk on). It was almost 10:00 am so we used our 10:00 am FPP for Peter Pan’s Flight. After that we headed over to Haunted Mansion and rode that standby with about a 25 minute wait. It was then time to use our 11:00 am FPP for BTMRR. Since it was getting really crowded I convinced my DDs that we needed to eat an early lunch. We found a great table upstairs at
Columbia Harbor House that was right by the windows with a view of Liberty Square. After lunch we used our noon FPP for Splash Mountain. We got a bit wet but not too bad. We really wanted to ride It’s a Small World so we got in line. We waited 38 minutes when it was posted as 25. After that we rode Buzz using our 1:00 pm FPP (DD15 maxed out her score!). We rode People Mover with close to a 20 minute wait.

Here are a bunch of pictures from the beautiful day

Next we used our 2:00 pm FPP for Space Mountain. After that we went over to Carousel of Progress. I am constantly amazed that my daughters really like that experience. After that we watched the 3:00 pm parade (we were just to left of the flag pole in a shaded spot as you look down Main Street). I was happy to see Maleficent back in the parade. We picked up a FPP for Under the Sea so we rode that. We went over to Hall of Presidents so see that. It is an amazing show even if you are not happy with the current political situation. The comfortable chairs were also welcome after a long day of touring. We then spent some time buying t-shirts at the Emporium.

Parade Photos (lots) https://imgur.com/a/dieNZR9

More pictures (because it was so beautiful out) https://imgur.com/a/AaJ3u1X

Since we had a 6:35 pm reservation at 'Ohana we took the monorail over to the Polynesian to meet DH. I got my much loved lapu lapu. https://imgur.com/a/4AY3t04 Our table was ready early so we received a text to go to be seated. Strangely we stood at the check-in desk for almost 10 minutes before someone came over to seat us. Once again DD15 was really happy to learn that they have a vegetarian menu. The food seemed really rushed but we enjoyed our meal anyway. We were done with our meal by 7:30 pm. The girls and I headed back to MK to experience the attractions that we had missed earlier in the day. First up was the Country Bears. We arrived just in time for a new show. The CM host appeared to really love that attraction so he made it extra fun. After than we went to Enchanted Tiki Room. We saw that with a really small group of people (less than 10) but we enjoyed it anyway.


Wow! This is the most thorough trip report I have read…ever? I loved it. Thank you so much for telling us about your trip. I am impressed that you got so much done at MK before your first FP. #goals!

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Well that made my mid morning coffee very enjoyable. Thank you for sharing.

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