Welcome to the second to last edition of our Orlando 2017 trip report. I can’t believe this series is coming to an end already. Today I’ll be talking about all the evening activities we did during our time in Orlando. If you’re interested in reading about the hotels we stayed in, the food we ate and the parks we visited, you can find all the posts under the trip reports category.
So without further ado, let’s go!
1. Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party – Magic Kingdom
We did Mickey’s Not So Scary on our first full day in Orlando. In hindsight, this was one of our Walt Disney World rookie mistakes because maaan were we tired and still adjusting to the time difference.
Despite us giving in and leaving two hours before it finished, we loved this party. From the atmosphere, and music to the character meets and shows – it truly is a unique experience. We loved that there were rare characters, one-off photo pass opportunities and alll the sweets – the shows were next level as well.
This was our first experience of Disney fireworks (I never stayed for them when I was younger) and we were both blown away by Hallowishes– even Carl, the self-professed fireworks grinch. We loved MNSSHP and we didn’t even meet any characters, do much trick or treating or try any Halloween inspired treats.
We’ve booked this again and will be making sure we have a chilled out morning so we can make the most of the whole night.
2. Fantasmic – Hollywood Studios
Hmmm… Fantasmic. Six months on I still have mixed feelings about this one. I’ll admit, I was expecting something insane. I’d always wanted to do this when I was younger but as we stayed offsite – and dad liked a beer – so we were never in the parks late enough to watch it.
I don’t know if I’d built it up a bit too much in my head but I was slightly disappointed. Some of the effects were amazing but once you’d seen the projection on the water trick once, you’d kind of seen it all.
I want to try it again, to see if we got it on an off night but if we don’t manage to get there, I don’t think I’d lose much sleep over it.
3. Halloween Horror Nights – Universal Studios
We’re going to write a full post on Halloween Horror Nights because this was a brave decision for both of us. We’re easily scared and didn’t really think it would be our thing but one night we were watching Tim Tracker’s videos and decided to book it on a whim.
As it was our honeymoon, we were risky and were both comfortable with the idea of the money being wasted if we hated it.
In a shock twist, we had a great night. We didn’t brave any houses – mostly because they were all over an hour queue and we didn’t want to wait that long for something we probably wouldn’t enjoy – but we loved the scare zones, the strong booze and the whole atmosphere.
We can’t justify the cost this year because we still don’t think the houses are for us, but we had a fun time and would absolutely do it again in a few years.
4. Illuminations – Epcot
In all honesty, I can’t really remember much about Illuminations (I know, I’m an appalling Disney fan). It was alright, but I wasn’t blown away. The globe was a really cool element and the fireworks were pretty but, yeah, it needs another watch. The fact that we were stood behind other people in the UK pavilion after a full evening going round the Food and Wine Festival may also be to blame. One that’s 100% on our list for next time, hopefully I’ll enjoy it a bit more.
I’ve just asked Carl what he thinks and he said “I don’t really remember it, we didn’t have a very good view so I wouldn’t mind fast passing it next time if we can get one on the day.” So there you go!
5. Happily Ever After – Magic Kingdom
Sadly we didn’t get chance to watch Wishes before it ended its run (sad face) but Happily Ever After was all I expected and more. We purposefully didn’t watch any full videos on YouTube and I’m so glad we didn’t because we were in awe.
The music is beautiful, the message is inspiring and the fireworks are utterly breathtaking – a true ‘pinch me’ moment. We missed this during our week at Disney and made a special trip over from Universal for it and I’m so glad we did.
An absolute must-do.
The things we didn’t do…
Unfortunately you can’t do everything, these are the things we missed that are on our bucket list for this September.
- Rivers of Light & Tree of Life Projection Show – we’ll be honest, Rivers of Light doesn’t look that great but we need to judge it for ourselves and the Tree of Life show looks gorgeous.
- Pandora and Kilimanjaro Safari at night – it looks like we have a night at Animal Kingdom on the horizon.
- Drinks round Disney Springs – we didn’t really do this on our last trip so we’re looking forward to a few chilled out evenings in the beautiful surroundings.
- Cinematic Celebration – we really hope we get the chance to see this while we’re at Universal because it looks unreal.
What evening activities would you suggest at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando? Let us know in the comments!