Before our holiday I shared a number of blog posts all about the new things we wanted to try in Orlando. And my, weren’t my ideas grand. Although it had only been a year since our last trip, I was almost certain that we’d have all the time in the world to tick everything off our list. I couldn’t have been more wrong. As always, there just weren’t enough hours in the day.
I thought it would be fun to look back at what we’d hoped to do, and see what we actually managed to achieve.
1. Festival of Fantasy Parade – I’m really happy to say we ticked this one off, and what a parade it is. Even without the dragon (which is still out of action) we both absolutely loved it. I remember the days when Disney did parades in most of the parks and I do wish they’d bring them back because they really do elevate the experience. I just loved the costumes, colours and music at Festival of Fantasy – an amazing experience, even in the baking sun.
2. Cheeseburger spring rolls – Another one we managed to do. In fact we were so excited to get our gobs around the cheeseburger spring rolls that we had them almost as soon as we got in the park. Unfortunately, however, they were a pretty average snack – and one that wasn’t on the dining plan to boot. We were glad to try them, but won’t be rushing back for more.
3. Ariel Meet & Greet – Sadly we didn’t make it to Ariel’s grotto this time. In my pre-trip post I mentioned that the queues were always short last year but it was the opposite this time and we didn’t want to wait too long. Hopefully next time.
4. Columbia Harbour – Another one we didn’t get to. The plan was to eat here for lunch on our first day but we had to change our plans and just never made it in the end. There are so many good snacks at Magic Kingdom that we ended up grazing most days and there wasn’t enough room left for lunch.
5. Photo opportunities – I can happily say we managed to tick lots of these off our list, including the famous tangled and Haunted Mansion at MNSSHP shots. I still maintain that Memory Maker is one of the best things at Walt Disney World, we have so many amazing shots!
1. World Showcase – During our 2017 trip we didn’t spend much time around the world and I was determined to rectify that this time. Did we? Kind of. We had a great day at Food and Wine where we explored most of the pavilions but our second planned day there I was just feeling too knackered to properly explore. I think this is one I’d plan early in the trip next time when my legs aren’t quite so exhausted.
2. World Showcase passport – Well I bought it, but I didn’t get it filled in. It’ll be going with me next time to finally get it complete.
3. Garden Grill breakfast – This is one I’m pleased to say we did. We loved our breakfast here although there was a lot of food and we both felt like we needed a nap afterwards. The cinnamon bun was delicious and I’m always here for a meal that comes with tater tots. All in all, a great experience and there’s nothing like eating inside a ride – loved it.
4. Orange Mission Space – We only did this once with Chris and Sarah and we all decided to go for the tame version, just incase – we didn’t want any sickness to occur and ruin our experience of food and wine. We did plan to go back and do it but never got round to it. Another excuse to go back!
5. Meeting Joy & Sadness – We managed this one – yay! Well, kind of anyway. Sadness was taking a comfort break so we actually only got to meet Joy. To be honest, this was a bit of a strange meet and greet and after twenty minutes of queuing I was a bit gutted that they weren’t both there.
1. Toy Story Land – We came, we saw and we conquered. I absolutely loved Toy Story Land and can’t wait to share it all with you in my attraction review. It’s safe to say there were a fair few tears – a great new addition to Hollywood Studios.
2. Beer flights and pretzels at Baseline Taphouse – Our favourite spot in Hollywood Studios. We didn’t have a beer flight (as I fancied a cocktail) but we did sample the pretzel and we beg you to try it too. So good and the beer cheese sauce is to die for. The perfect place to people watch and probably our favourite bar in Walt Disney World.
3. Muppetvision 3D – Another one ticked off the list. We both really enjoyed it. Sure, it’s a bit old and tired but the story is funny and the effects are pretty good. As there’s never a big queue for this so it’s a great way to spend half an hour out of the heat in Hollywood Studios.
4. Mama Melrose – We had a slap-up meal here and it was the only place we had three courses. The food was great, we loved the atmosphere and the cocktails were nice and strong. The only thing that let it down were the staff, the service wasn’t as good as some of the other places we visited.
5. Character Meets – In my new things to try at Hollywood Studios post I listed Woody, Buzz and Olaf as the three I wanted to meet here. We didn’t get chance with Woody and Buzz – the lines were just too long – but we did meet Olaf on a 10-minute queue which was pretty fun.
1. Flight of Passage – We did it three times and it blew our minds away every time. The best ride technically at Walt Disney World (though not my favourite) and just an incredible experience. It gave me goosebumps each time I rode it – just beautiful.
2. Becoming Wilderness Explorers – Yeah, this one didn’t happen. Carl wasn’t so keen and we just didn’t have the time, even though we spent three days in Animal Kingdom. You need to put a fair bit of time to one side for this one and we ran out of it very quickly. Maybe one for when we go with children!
3. Feasting at Yak & Yeti – I’m happy to say we did this twice, once at the quick service and again in the restaurant. This was Carl’s favourite burger of the trip and my meal was amazing too. Delicious food that we wish we could eat again and again. The only negative was the seating at the quick service, it was really busy and after 10 minutes of looking for a seat, we ended up in the blazing sun. A lot of people were sitting with no food just to get a bit of shade which was a bit frustrating.
4. Riding Kilimanjaro Safari at night – We did this and loved it. The animals were a bit more active than when we did it during the day and we had a ‘pinch me’ moment when we heard the lions actually roaring. This really made it hit home that you can experience something truly unique at Walt Disney World and cemented Animal Kingdom as our favourite park in Orlando.
5. Cheeseburger pods – We had a great meal at Satu’li Canteen which included the infamous cheeseburger pods. Were they good? Yes! Were they the best thing we ate all trip? No. A nice meal, but not one to rush back for.