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Tip for visiting Disney World?

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Tip for visiting Disney World?

Old 05-08-12, 03:55 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Larry C. View Post
After reading #5 I really don't know what I'm gonna do with you.
Oh be nice. I ironed your red t-shirt for you last summer, and you didn't even cry ONCE during Small World!
Old 05-08-12, 03:57 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Trout View Post
Epcot- Toy Story ride, great for adults and kids. Hit it E-A-R-L-Y.
Hollywood Studios, you mean For that, grab a FastPass first thing and then go hit Tower of Terror and Rock-and-Rollercoaster, then have a churro.

My wife and I are going in September for our 10 year anniversary and we have reservations for Victoria and Albert's. Can't freakin' wait for this trip.
Nice!
Old 05-08-12, 10:48 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
My girls are 11 and 8, prime Disney years.

Just to clarify one thing: all of our meals are reserved at this time, including Tusker House, Chef Mickey's, Crystal Palace, Teppan Edo and The Plaza for breakfast/lunch and Boma and California Grill for our two "nice" dinners. We have a room with a full kitchen so the other meals we'll probably eat in the room. Still, I'd like to get one more lunch idea.
With an 8-year-old, you're a little limited. But there are two tours your family can do. There's the Living Seas Aqua Tour that lets you snorkel in the aquarium. And there's the new Wild Africa Trek walking tour which takes you into the safari ride and lets you get up close to the animals. I've heard a lot of positive feedback about that Animal Kingdom tour.

If you're doing that many expensive restaurants, definitely get the Tables In Wonderland card. It'll save you money.

Check out the Fireworks Dessert Party at the Magic Kingdom. Here's a review with photos:

http://land.allears.net/blogs/michae...t_party_1.html

If you're celebrating anything, or you just want a surprise at dinner, special order a cake. Average cakes will run around $20-$50, and the elaborate custom design cakes run around $50-$100. Here's some details and photos:

http://disneytravelbabble.com/how-to/order-cake/
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2118274

Over the past 2-3 years, I've heard a lot of Disney fanatics talk about hiring a local professional photographer to follow the family around WDW for a couple hours. One name that keeps popping up is The Roots. They specialize in weddings, but I've seen them do normal family sessions. I'm not sure how much they charge, but I'm gonna look into it for our next family trip. Here's their blog with Disney photo sessions.

http://rootweddings.com/blog/category/disney/
Old 05-08-12, 11:59 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Still, I'd like to get one more lunch idea.
One of our favorite restaurants in WDW is the Yak & Yeti in the Animal Kingdom. It's a great location for lunch. And if you time it right, the 2nd story window tables give you an excellent view of the midday parade.

Another fun activity is to take the whole family to Beaches & Cream at the Beach Club Resort and try to finish off the Kitchen Sink. It's also a great place for lunch. The hamburgers are often rated as the best in WDW. You can do this place on an EPCOT day. It's just a short walk from the back gate between England and France.

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Originally Posted by Hokeyboy View Post
Hit the Sci-Fi Dine-Inn Theater in Hollywood Studios. It is a MUST-VISIT place for lunch while you're at that park.
Love the Sci-Fi Dine In. But instead of eating a full meal, we usually go around 2-3pm for a snack. We get milkshakes and split a couple appetizers. The onion rings and the spinach & artichoke dip are both really good. I was never impressed by their lunch/dinner items in the past. But I hear they have a new menu that gets good reviews.

If you're going to Disney Studios and plan on doing Fantasmic, consider booking the Fantasmic Dinner Package. You can eat lunch or dinner at Mama Melrose and Hollywood Brown Derby, or the dinner buffet at Hollywood & Vine. Then you get a special seating section at Fantasmic. On the downside, the seats are on the sides of the amphitheater. But at least you don't have to wait 90 minutes jam packed in that horrible line.

Last edited by TheBigDave; 05-09-12 at 12:14 AM.
Old 05-09-12, 12:43 AM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

I forgot to add this. If you have to do the character meet & greets, the best place is Character Spot in the Innovations West pavilion at Epcot. The big five are there, all in one place. You get one right after another. Usually the lines aren't too long, unlike at the Magic Kingdom. And you're inside with the air conditioning.

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Old 05-10-12, 07:02 AM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

If your daughters like the princess characters, get pictures with them in the morning.
After lunch, Cinderella, Jasmine, and the rest usually reek of bourbon and Marlboro Lights.
Old 05-10-12, 06:57 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

I love asking the people who are trying to push one of the huge double strollers through the crowd right after the parade "are you freaking kidding?" But I don't think I said freaking.

In the Magic Kingdom there is a stage off the beaten path where groups from around the country go to perform. I never realized it was there until a few years ago my daughter's dance school performed there and we got to see her and several other acts. The kids do a great job. These are very high level performers. It's a shame it's so hidden. The only people there tend to be the parents of the kids performing. Hokeyboy might know where it is, I don't remember.
Old 05-10-12, 08:44 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

^You're probably thinking of the one in Tomorrowland, that's where the school bands/choruses end up. There might be others though, but that's usually the big one.
Old 05-10-12, 09:56 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy View Post
Hit the Sci-Fi Dine-Inn Theater in Hollywood Studios. It is a MUST-VISIT place for lunch while you're at that park.

The food is standard lunch fare BUT being in a huge room themed like a nighttime trip to a drive-in theater, with clips from 50s B-movies, trailers, cartoons, and 1950s PSAs projected on the huge screen. It's one of the best themed restaurants in all of Disney, and they make a pretty decent milkshake too.
I loved the Sci-Fi Dine-Inn though I found it odd that they didn't offer popcorn. Seems like a no-brainer for a place like that. Plus, I'd change the menu to be a little more reflective of drive-in food fare instead of pasta and ribs. I'm nitpicking as I did love the place. There's also a great hamburger buffet place in Frontierland that was actually reasonably priced and was near the Song of the South ride. (Funny that the ride is okay to do but not release the actual film on DVD.)
Old 05-10-12, 10:15 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by TheBigDave View Post
I forgot to add this. If you have to do the character meet & greets, the best place is Character Spot in the Innovations West pavilion at Epcot. The big five are there, all in one place. You get one right after another. Usually the lines aren't too long, unlike at the Magic Kingdom. And you're inside with the air conditioning.
If you do this right when Epcot opens, you can go right through. Send a runner to go get Soarin' fast passes at the same time. After 11 am or so, the wait time jumps up to about hour.
Old 05-11-12, 01:09 AM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Oh no--you can't show up late for fastpasses anymore? That always turned out to be my touring plan (after all the tourguide mike, touring plans, and Ridemax spreadsheets): grab fast passes in the morning but stand in line for all rides, go to hotel for nap, then come back in the evening and use all the fastpasses. Never got turned away doing that, and it worked awesomely.

I'm going to start planning a Disneyworld trip, too. My daughter wants me to take her there for a week for her 21st birthday, and I think I will.

Only advice I have for your trip is to check out disboards.com. It's like cruise critic, but for Disneyworld/land.

Also, I would consider renting a room at Universal for the day you spend there. The Universal express line you can buy used to be only one front of the line for each ride, but the room rental was unlimited line cuts. Seems worth it to me.

Have a great trip!
Old 05-11-12, 01:14 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by KirstenS View Post
Not to hijack this thread, but my husband and I are heading down to Orlando at the end of August (UGH). I went to high school in Orlando, so I spent a lot of time at Disney. Even had my after-prom at a Disney resort. I've only been back to the parks once in the last 15 years though, so I'm sure a lot has changed. My husband hasn't been there since he was a kid. Any recommendations of things for a couple of adults to do? We're planning one day at Magic Kingdom and another at Epcot.
Downtown Disney is fun for shopping. Also, the Cirque show is fabulous. Took my wife there for her birthday a couple years back, ended up on stage with the bike rider jumping over my head. Wife loved it. The AMC theater at Downtown Disney now has Dine-In theaters with first run films (under 18 requires a parent). Food was just ok (better than most theater food, but not up to normal Disney fare), but you can get cocktails, drinks or snacks served to you while watching (or you can stuff yourself on desserts). Watched the Hunger Games there in March (while eating a rather large meal.... seems a bit inconsistent) when I flew us down to Florida for a week.

We really love the World Showcase at Epcot. Last time at Epcot we tried the restaurant in Morocco. Was quite good. We typically eat at 3 or more of the Epcot World Showcase restaurants when we visit. I love eating late as the crowds are lower and we have already seen the fireworks/lights displays too many times to count.

Personally, I'd love to do some of the behind-the-scenes stuff sometime, so you may want to check out the available tours.

We were not overly impressed with Universal. We spent 1/2 a day visiting the Islands of Adventure Park. We enjoyed the Suessland (I'm a Dartmouth grad so Dr. Suess is like family and my wife loves Suess). We did the Harry Potter world. Had a similar experience to those mentioned above. Slow moving line during outside wait, then they rushed us through the interior of the castle due to their poor crowd management skills. Did like the butterbeer and checking some of the stores. The other lands were very meh....

We used to love Sea World, but it seems that they are losing their touch. Too expensive for a day visit there anymore given what the park offers. They did add a new roller coaster, but it seems like it was at the expense of the animal exhibits.
Old 05-11-12, 01:42 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Just got back the other day from a four-day trip.

1. Do not miss the MK fireworks. Stake out a spot in front of Cinderella's Castle for the best view. Get there early and do not miss the pre-fireworks light show on the castle. Out-fucking-standing.

2. Best food bargain: Animal Kingdom Yak & Yeti's food stand: orange chicken for $9 and some change. Enough to feed three people.

3. Secret: EPCOT's Soarin' is open one hour after close, though it's not advertised. A cast member told us it's because Test Track is closed until November. So when the crowd is leaving after the Illuminations fireworks head over to The Land pavilion - don't worry that it looks like it's closed - and you'll be greeted with no line at an attraction not to be missed. We rode it 4 times back to back. Then we were the only four on the Disney bus back to our rooms at Pop Century.

4. There are 54 different possible combinations for the Hollywood Studios 3D Star Tours Star Wars ride. Probably the best 3D I have ever seen, and a ride that you should visit as often as possible.

5. Don't put too much belief into the posted wait times. Many times an attraction listed as 10 or 20 minutes was literally a walk-on most of the time.

6. Sci-Fi Diner at Hollywood Studios



Wear comfortable shoes, use Fast Pass and enjoy....
Old 05-11-12, 01:51 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by brainee View Post
Magic Kingdom is light on thrill rides (and the only other coaster, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, is very mild).
Big Thunder Mountain is currently closed. MK is revamping and creating a new runaway 7 Dwarves mine train ride...
Old 05-11-12, 02:00 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by 12thmonkey View Post
Test Track is closed until November.
Wow, I was just there a month ago and it was still open. I'm glad too, because that ride was a favorite of my kids.
Old 05-11-12, 02:05 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
Wow, I was just there a month ago and it was still open. I'm glad too, because that ride was a favorite of my kids.
Not sure when it closed. We were there on May 7th and it was shut down.
Yeah, I was a little bummed out - but the "secret" extra hour of Soarin' was worth it - at least for our group....
Old 05-11-12, 02:58 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Some guy on a Star Wars nerd board I read is apparently gonna spend $300+ to travel from New Jersey to Orlando tomorrow so he can buy $500+ worth of build-a-droid action figure parts that are only available at Disney World.

So there's that.
Old 05-11-12, 03:58 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by 12thmonkey View Post
Big Thunder Mountain is currently closed. MK is revamping and creating a new runaway 7 Dwarves mine train ride...
Which won't be open until early 2014. FFFFUUUUUUU--
Old 05-11-12, 04:00 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by wlmowery View Post
We really love the World Showcase at Epcot. Last time at Epcot we tried the restaurant in Morocco. Was quite good. We typically eat at 3 or more of the Epcot World Showcase restaurants when we visit.
Take this for what it's worth...

In 2005 I had lunch at the Morocco Restaurant. I was visiting with my sister, who's an MD. We were staying at the Contemporary, sunning at the pool, when I started to feel some light cramping. I went to the shop to pick up some Pepto and head back to the room. This must have been around, oh, 4pm or so.

The last thing I remembered was walking up the hallway to my room...

The next thing I remembered was it being about 5 hours later, staring up into the faces of a team of paramedics, with my sister's pale and fear-stricken face behind them. My vitals had completely dropped. I apparently had spent hours in the bathroom with my body expelling everything inside me, then my fever shot up to over 104 degrees, and I collapsed. I was too weak to lift my arms. Thankfully my sister, as a doctor, was able to handle things until the paramedics showed up. By that point (as my memory was returning and the fever dropping) I had pretty much stabilized. Anti-biotics and fluids were the order of the day.

The lamb at the Moroccan restaurant had given me a Staph infection of unbelievable nastiness. That used to be my favorite Epcot restaurant. Haven't been back since. Disney, to their everlasting generosity and compassion, took the dinner charge off of our vacation invoice. I guess that's the best I could have hoped for.
Old 05-11-12, 04:02 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy View Post
Which won't be open until early 2014. FFFFUUUUUUU--
I thought the the sign said 2013. It's part of the big Fantasyland expansion....
Old 05-11-12, 04:15 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by wlmowery View Post
We used to love Sea World, but it seems that they are losing their touch. Too expensive for a day visit there anymore given what the park offers. They did add a new roller coaster, but it seems like it was at the expense of the animal exhibits.
I thought the new coaster (Manta) was pretty awesome. Very cool how it was integrated with an animal exhibit - the queue weaved it's way through a gigantic aquarium (featuring, among other things, mantas!). The aquarium can be toured by people not interested (or too small for) the ride as well. I'd never been on a flying coaster before, so that was a new experience. Interesting and unusual way to ride a coaster (being suspended face-down underneath the tracks). Very smooth ride with g-forces different from what you're used to on a normal coaster.

Two other "big" rides (Kraken and Atlantic) are tucked away at the back of the park, so it didn't feel like it was taking away space for animal exhibits. And the only other major ride, a flight simulator, was also integrated with an animal display (arctic animals). And there were still plenty of animal exhibits and shows to fill up your day. For me at least, I think Sea World has a nice balance as it is between rides, shows, and animal exhibits. My biggest complaint was the sub-par dining options in the park.
Old 05-11-12, 04:16 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by 12thmonkey View Post
Big Thunder Mountain is currently closed. MK is revamping and creating a new runaway 7 Dwarves mine train ride...
Just to be clear, BTM is reopening this month. The 7 Dwarves Mine Train is a brand new ride (and a brand new "mountain") being created in the new Fntasyland, not a replacement for BTM. Your post makes it sound like the latter.
Old 05-11-12, 04:27 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Just to be clear, BTM is reopening this month. The 7 Dwarves Mine Train is a brand new ride (and a brand new "mountain") being created in the new Fntasyland, not a replacement for BTM. Your post makes it sound like the latter.
I thought BTM was being replaced
Glad to hear it's not going away...!
Old 05-11-12, 05:06 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by brainee View Post
I thought the new coaster (Manta) was pretty awesome. Very cool how it was integrated with an animal exhibit - the queue weaved it's way through a gigantic aquarium (featuring, among other things, mantas!). The aquarium can be toured by people not interested (or too small for) the ride as well. I'd never been on a flying coaster before, so that was a new experience. Interesting and unusual way to ride a coaster (being suspended face-down underneath the tracks). Very smooth ride with g-forces different from what you're used to on a normal coaster.
I liked the ride, but as soon as that thing locked my legs in I immediately felt claustrophobic and didn't fully come down from it until the ride was over.
Old 05-11-12, 06:11 PM
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Re: Tip for visiting Disney World?

Originally Posted by 12thmonkey View Post

3. Secret: EPCOT's Soarin' is open one hour after close, though it's not advertised. A cast member told us it's because Test Track is closed until November.
Damn, that is one of the rides I always look forward to.

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