12 hours in The Happiest Place on Earth

Disney World. The two words that could probably excite a 6 year old child more than any others in the world. In the lead up to this trip, Disney was one of the things I was most excited about.
Getting up early has been one constant on this trip – trying to get up and out the door as early as possible to fit as many things into the day as we could, and today was no exception. Our plan was to be up and out the door at 7:30 to catch the trolley (which was a bus that was $1.25 a ride) to Seaworld, and connect to the 8:10 public bus ($2.00) to Disney World. Yep, we’re cheap. And the first hitch in our plan happened when we discovered that the trolley didn’t start until 8am. What kind of tourist city is this? One where people sleep late?

So after forking out $20 for a cab, we made it to the bus stop, only to find out that we’d missed the bus by about 2 minutes… so we hung out at the bus stop on the side of a random highway in Orlando waiting for the public bus… and finally it came, and took us to Disney World.

I’d never thought about how big the Disney resort is, but I guess when you consider the amount of parks they have on the land, it’s necessary. Once we hit the resort, it took us about 15 minutes to get to the Ticket Centre, and from there we had to catch the monorail to the Magic Kingdom.

I guess as a 25 year old, you have a different perspective to a 6 year old – you realize that Cinderella and Mickey Mouse aren’t real people, and so your excitement is slightly less than that of a elementary schooler, however that doesn’t mean I didn’t squeal or jump up and down at points.

We headed straight for Space Mountain and rode that. I was expecting something scarier, but it was a good ride. We would come back and ride it twice more during the day, and got a sneak peak of the Space Mountain track in the light when we rode the People Mover around Tomorrowland and it was being “fixed” (Kath even saw one of the rollercoaster ‘rockets’ on the track with people still in it needing to be rescued!)

Disney is a very family friendly place with stroller parking all over, and characters roaming the street. We didn’t get photos with as many of the characters as I wanted to, because the lines were huge (at one point the line to ‘meet’ Tinkerbelle was 90 minutes long, and 60 minutes to meet Cinderella. Meeting Mickey was the highlight of my character-meeting – we lined up for 15 minutes, were ushered into a room with 10 other people, and Mickey “talked” to us (in sign language, of course) and danced with me and we took photos. Then Kathleen came in for some photos, and Mickey pretended to walk off with one of us on each of his arms until his minders “told” him that Minnie wouldn’t like that very much… good times.

We rode Big Thunder Mountain Railway and Splash Mountain twice each, and pretty much everything else once. We rode “it’s a small world” which totally creeped me out (imagine a boat ride through the dark with thousands of creepy little dolls singing “it’s a small world” over and over. CREEPY. Peter Pan’s Flight always had a long line (we ended up getting a FastPass for it) and wasn’t anything too exciting – not sure why it’s billed as one of the best rides in the park.

We ate hotdogs for lunch, and after paying $24 for 2 hotdogs and 2 drinks, we decided that instead of eating dinner in the park we’d press through and get something when we got back to our hotel.
We spent a full 12 hours at the Magic Kingdom, and it went surprisingly fast. The longest we spent on a line for a ride was about 25 minutes, and all the big rides we FastPass-ed got onto them pretty quickly. I figured out the FastPass system pretty quickly – you take your ticket, put it in a machine, and it prints out a ticket for a one hour time slot (ie. 2.45-3.45) where you can return and pretty much jump the line. But when you allotted time (ie. 2.45) or 2 hours comes (which ever is sooner) you can go to another machine and get another fast pass… at one point we were carrying around FastPasses for 3 rides.

As you’ve probably seen, there were a lot of fashion disasters at Disney, which we documented in the previous blog. It’s become a bit of a favourite pastime for Kathleen and I to walk around and point out badly dressed people.

The Orlando part of the trip has gone so fast, and it’s hard to think that we are nearly already halfway through our vacation.

This entry was posted in Florida, Theme Parks, Travel, USA 2010. Bookmark the permalink.

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