Friday, June 10, 2016

Disney 2016: Magic Kingdom, Day 1 (part 1)

Disclaimer:  I'm a dork and like to have a detailed record of our trip, like a down to the minute record of everything we did.  If I'm going to spend this much money on a vacation, I want to be sure that we remember every. single. thing. Plus, when I am planning trips, I love to look at blogs that include times and wait times and crowd levels, because it helps me to plan what we should do.  So, I'm including all of that here.  Feel free to read or skim or skip it as you please.  Also another disclaimer....Disney World is not the place to look pretty.  I did not even bother to pack any makeup or any hair product for this trip.  When you go to Disney World in June, it is pretty much guaranteed that you will be a wet mess every day either from sweat or rain or most likely both.  We all wore ugly but comfortable shoes and didn't bother with cute outfits.  It's not even worth it to try to look good because everyone looks horrible by the end of the day, no matter what! 

(I used a website called Touring Plans to help plan our trip.  They have predicted crowd levels for each day and then the next day they post what the actual crowd levels were.  I don't know how accurate it is, but I think this is interesting, so I will include that in these posts as well!)
Touring Plans Predicted Crowd Levels at Magic Kingdom:  8 out of 10
Touring Plans Actual Crowd Levels at Magic Kingdom:  10 out of 10!  (Last trip, in September 2014, we were in Magic Kingdom on a 1/10 crowd level day, and I said I never wanted to find out what a 10/10 looked like.  Now I know!  And it really wasn't that bad!)

7:24 am-- We arrived at the bus stop at Animal Kingdom Lodge and were lucky to get right on a bus with no waiting!  Here we are on the bus and ready to go for our first day at Magic Kingdom.  Even Isla, though you can't tell from the picture!
7:45 am--  We arrived at Magic Kingdom.  Already, there was a small crowd of people there waiting to get in for the 8:45 opening time.  And a much larger crowd of people going into the park for pre-park opening breakfast reservations.  We were part of that crowd, as we had an 8:20 breakfast reservation at Be Our Guest restaurant.

The whole reason that I booked an early breakfast reservation at Be Our Guest was so that we could be in the park when it is "empty" and get a picture in front of the castle without huge crowds around us.  Well, the secret about pre-park opening breakfasts must be out, because there were a LOT of other people with the same idea!  The streets weren't quite as empty as I hoped, but we did get a picture in front of the castle without too huge of crowds around us.  And Isla was not interested, but I didn't really expect her to cooperate.  At least she wanted to be in pictures this trip!  Last trip it was almost impossible to even get her in front of the camera.  This year, she would do pictures only if I held her and even then, she wouldn't look.  But she is in the pictures!  Baby steps...

I splurged and paid for Disney's Memory Maker photo package.  I did not want to lug around my big camera every day, and I was also just curious to try out Memory Maker and see if it was worth the money.  It cost $149 (if you buy it before your trip), and I'm still not sure it was worth the money.  But it was nice to let someone else take the pictures.  They just scan your Magic Band after taking the pictures, and then within minutes (sometimes seconds!) the pictures show up in your account.  You can view/download them from your phone, computer, tablet, etc. and they can be downloaded as many times as you want.  We ended up with about 230 pictures from Disney photographers.  They also do these fun "magic shots" and add Disney characters to the pictures.  Audrey loved doing these!

8:15 am--  With pictures done, we walked back to the Beast's castle for our breakfast at Be Our Guest.

Be Our Guest is a fun themed restaurant, with three different rooms for dining, each one modeled after a part of the Beast's castle in the Beauty and the Beast movie.  On our last trip, we had lunch there and sat in the Rose Gallery room.  For this breakfast, we chose the ballroom.  The girls, especially Isla, were so captivated by the "snow" that was falling behind the ballroom windows.  "But how do they make it snow outside when it is so hot?" Isla kept asking!  I didn't get great pictures of the room, but it really does look like the ballroom from the movie.

Our breakfast was way overpriced for what we got, but I think you pay more for the ambiance and the early park entry than you do for the food.  This was our food, and it was $80 total.  Those are the most expensive Fruit Loops we have EVER eaten!

8:40 am-- We finished our breakfast fairly quickly, ready to get out in the park for rope drop.  Magic Kingdom is scheduled to open at 9:00 am, but they let people in at 8:45.  Daniel went back to the front of the park to rent a stroller for Isla.  She walks SLOWLY, and we didn't think she would be able to keep up with us all day long.  Plus big crowds aren't her favorite, so the stroller provided a safe place for her.  While he was getting the stroller, the girls and I hurried to beat the crowds to our first ride...It's a Small World.  Okay, I'm just kidding.  There are NO crowds going to It's a Small World first thing.  Only us!  But I knew the girls would like it, especially Isla, and I wanted to start with something I knew they would for sure like.  Plus, we got our own private ride.  There was not another person there except for us!

At the end of It's a Small World, they have added a new thing where the ride tells you good-bye by name! They use the GPS technology in your Magicband to know who is on the boat, and when your boat passes through this area, it tells you good-bye by name.  Both creepy and cool at the same time!
After the ride, we met back up with Daniel.  Audrey really wanted to go on the Peter Pan ride.  A better plan would have been to go on Peter Pan first thing, and then It's a Small World, as the Peter Pan line fills up quickly.  But, both girls were a little uncertain of being up high on the Peter Pan ride last trip, so I didn't want to do it first thing. Isla still wasn't sure, so she and Daniel did It's a Small World again then walked over to Dumbo.

9:06 am--  Audrey and I got in the Peter Pan line.  The wait time was already posted at 30 minutes.  I was hoping that would be wrong!  It was fun to go through the new queue for the ride.  It walks you through the Darling house and has some fun special effects:  like a shadow wall, a Tinkerbell light that interacts with things, and then right before the ride, a light sprinkles "pixie dust" on everyone.  It is a fun queue, much better than the miserable line that it used to be!

9:35 am-- We got on the Peter Pan ride, for a wait time of 29 minutes.  I was a little frustrated that we waited in such a long line so early in the day.  But let this be a warning to those planning trips: if you want to do Peter Pan at rope drop, get there before 9:00 for shortest wait times.  By the time we got off the ride, the line was up to 50 minutes!

Meanwhile, Daniel and Isla had finished It's a Small World and gotten stuck in little bit of a line for Dumbo.  For some reason, the ride wasn't working and the waits were a little long for that early in the morning.  They rode Dumbo, while Audrey and I went to her favorite, the Ariel ride!

9:40 am--  Audrey and I walked right on the Ariel ride.

9:55 am-- We met back up with Daniel and Isla and got in line to meet Ariel next door to her ride.  The wait time said 15 minutes, but it was a long line, and again, I was a little annoyed that we had to wait.  I had to keep reminding myself that it was June not September.  We were going to have to wait in lines on this trip!  (although I am happy to say that 30 minutes is the longest we ever waited for anything on this trip, and I think we only waited 30 minutes 3-4 times the whole trip...2 times on this morning!)

10:25 am--  Our turn to meet Ariel!

10:35 am--  We had a Fastpass to ride Winnie the Pooh next.  We waited in the Fastpass line 10 minutes, and then it was our turn to ride.  Again, both girls thought this was a little scary (it is really not scary at all!) on the last trip, but they both liked it this time.  They are getting a little braver every trip, and maybe someday we will work our way up to the "real" rides!  

After Winnie the Pooh, we stopped for a bathroom break.  Audrey remembered the Tangled bathrooms from our last trip and insisted that we walk over there to use the bathroom.  They are probably the nicest bathrooms in the park, with a whole bathroom area themed after the Tangled movie.

11:00 am-- The girls really wanted to ride the carousel, even though they can ride a carousel almost anywhere.  The horses on the Disney carousel did go up and down, which is a little fancier than most carousels.  So we got in a fairly long line for the carousel and ended up waiting 15 minutes.  That's a long time to wait for the carousel, but they really wanted to do it!  I did get this cute picture of them on their horses.

While we were on the carousel, Daniel got us some cold drinks and a table in the shade to sit down and cool off for a few minutes.  Then we were off to Enchanted Tales with Belle.

11:40 am-- We got in the Fastpass line for the Belle show.  Something was going on, and we heard rumors that the show had been delayed.  So we had to wait a few minutes.  We ended up waiting 15 minutes before they brought us in for the show.  

In this show, kids are selected to play parts and act out the story of Beauty and the Beast with Belle.  They also select a couple of adults to be the knights, and without volunteering, Daniel got picked to be a knight!  Audrey didn't want a part, but she did get her picture taken with Belle at the end.  Isla and I just watched.

I am only halfway through our day, and this post is already ridiculously long.  I'm going to take a break here and will be back with part two soon!


Post a Comment