Florida, Part 2: The Happiest Place on Earth

The first four days of our trip were spent “park-hopping” around the Disney Parks.  Our first stop was the Magic Kingdom.

1-IMG_02371-DSCN1667 1-DSCN1668

It was a beautiful day and a great way to start off our week of fun.  A lot of things have changed about Disney World since I was a kid, but thankfully the magic and excitement of walking down Main Street USA has not.  It was so fun to experience it all with Nathan, who was having his first Disney adventure.

We set aside an entire day for this park, but quickly discovered that as adults traveling without kids, we could get through the place rather quickly, which was really nice.  We were able to get through a ton of rides, including big ones like Space Mountain, in the morning during the “extra magic hour”. 

There are a lot of things you notice as an adult that you don’t notice as a child.  For instance . . . strollers.  So many strollers.  Everywhere.  After a couple hours in this park, I was ready to declare war on anyone with a stroller.  They even have designated “stroller parking” areas, which basically consist of a hundred strollers are parked in a mini parking lot.  People would leave their diaper bags and snacks and purchases in their stroller and go on rides.  Those people are way more trusting than I would ever be!

The park itself is quite a bit different than I remember too.  They have redone Fantasyland, and Toon Town no longer exists.  The new Fantasyland is cool, although quite popular and crowded.  The other thing I noticed is that you didn’t really see the characters wandering the park.  When I was a kid, it seemed like they were everywhere and you could just walk right up to them.  These days, you either see them in a parade or you wait in a half hour line at designated times and places for a Character Meet & Greet.  That is definitely something I missed this time around.

Thankfully, the best and most classic rides were still there.  Teacups, anyone?


Jungle Cruising . . .


Magic carpet flying!


Our favorite rides of the day were Space Mountain and Thunder Railroad.  Least favorite?  Winnie the Pooh.  Nothing against the Winnie the Pooh ride . . . in fact, I love Winnie the Pooh.  It was one of my favorite cartoons as a kid.  That, and the fact that it was only supposed to be a twenty minute wait, were the whole reason we went on the ride.  But sixty minutes, a pushy mom, and a crazy child on a leash later?  I’d had enough.  So at that point, we parked ourselves at the train station with a prime view of the parade route and the castle for the evening festivities.


We had the best seat in the house for the Electrical Light Parade and evening fireworks show.


The Electrical Light Parade is such a great show!  The best part of it is that it pays tribute to some of the oldest, most classic Disney characters and stories.  Even though you don’t see them as much throughout the park anymore, you see them in the parade.  It was fun to watch.  After the parade, they had a show called Celebrate the Magic, where the castle is lit up to tell the stories of Disney’s most popular and beloved stories along to music.  I had never seen this show before, and it was really cool to see them transform the color of the castle and actually reflect the stories and images on the castle.  Finally, we kicked the night off with the fireworks shows over the castle, another first for me.  My husband, the fireworks connoisseur, gave the show two thumbs up. 

It was an amazing, happy, and magical first day!

No comments: