Day three we went to Animal Kingdom. Again, we had to pay $14 to park, then took a tram into the park, dropping us off at the front entrance. My sister and brother-in-law and my daughter and I took our pictures standing in front of the big tree before separating to do our own thing.
My daughter and I went off to meet some Disney characters. We first found Donald Duck who was also near King Louie and Baloo the bear as well as Chip and Dale. Pocahontas has a spot in that area as well, but wasn’t going to show up until later. We met with Donald then decided to go find Mickey and Minnie.
After asking three different people their location we finally found them. I think it would be most helpful if Disney painted footprints on the footpaths leading toward the character locations. This would save time, frustration, and confusion. They were both inside an unmarked building. At least hang a sign on the wall saying this was where they were. Even though there was a Mickey mark on the map, it still didn’t help me find them.
We stood in line for a few minutes, snaking our way to meet the famous mice. Once my daughter got the sight of them she started shouting Mickey Mouse’s name in excitement. I had promised her for the past two days that we were going to go find Mickey, though it took us this long to find him. We started to make our way over to stand next to Mickey and Minnie, and my daughter started to cry. She loves Mickey and she is finally getting to meet him. We were able to get Mickey and Minnie’s autograph and our pictures taken and were off to find something else to do.
I started walking in the direction of the Rapids ride that I was wanting to ride, but first a stop for something cold to drink as it was really hot outside. After several minutes of waiting on my sister to come watch my daughter for me, I was off to ride the Rapid ride. I had a fast pass which helped me get through the line much quicker.
I continued snaking through the queue all the while watching the lady in front of my don a rain parka. Who goes on a wet ride on a hot day and wears a rain parka? Honestly, that’s cheating! Lol! To my surprise I was seated on the same ride as her. We rode all the way through the wild river, getting splashed here and there. I got a little wet, but it was the two people to my right that got soaked. The lady in the rain parka, didn’t even get sprinkled on, so my thought was that there was no need for it. Ah well.
I found my sister and brother-in-law and we made our way to the animal safari. I knew my daughter was going to enjoy it. We saw quite a few giraffes, her favorite, and a few elephants, rhinos, crocodiles, and hippos. We also saw at least a hundred turkey buzzards. Honestly, I’ve never seen so many turkey buzzards in one location in my life.
We finished the Animal Kingdom with a stop for lunch at the Rainforest Cafe, where we each got a military discount on our meals. The food was so good, the atmosphere was wonderful, and most of all my daughter was enjoying herself.
Next stop was Epcot. Since we had already paid $14 to park at the Animal Kingdom we didn’t have to pay the fee to park again at Epcot. Upon walking through the entrance there were two Disney characters standing in the shade, Daisy Duck and Goofy. Of course I had to go meet Goofy, he was my favorite! he was such a pleasure to meet and very funny to my daughter. I even got the chance to give him a big hug.
Once again my sister and brother-in-law parted my company, leaving me to find something for me and my daughter to do.
It had been a long, busy day and my daughter was beginning to get cranky. It was also hot and most importantly it was way past her nap time. We did manage to find the Nemo ride, which entertained her for a short while before I had to text my sister that I needed to head back to the hotel room to put my duaghter down for a nap.
If you decide to make a trip to Disney, make sure you add Animal Kingdom to the list. Go on the Animal Safari, you would enjoy it!
Day Two – We got up early the next morning and stood in line to get into the park. The fun part was riding the monorail to the Magic Kingdom. We ate breakfast inside the park again, mini Belgian waffles with fresh fruit, which was really good.
They chatted for a few minutes about finding the White Rabbit and then Alice signed my daughter’s autograph book before we went to ride the tea cups. Seeing my baby’s face when the ride started was priceless. She smiled and giggled and shouted “Wee!” the entire time the ride was going. When we got off the White Rabbit was hanging out with Alice and we had to go stand in line again just to meet him.
We continued to ride rides and meet characters, especially her most two favorite characters, Merida and Tinker Bell.
The best part was the fast passes. My brother-in-law, James, would go get our fast passes while we stood in line for another ride. The fast pass had a time on it where we could go back to that particular ride and cut to the front of the line.
Most of the rides had signs saying how long the wait was. The worst part was how expensive everything was. I knew that it might be expensive before I got there, but Starbucks coffee is considerably cheap compared to coffee at Disney. And $2.50 for a 20oz bottled water and $4 for a small bag of cotton candy? We actually agreed on McD’s for lunch outside of the park, followed by a nap … for us adults. Though the nap was cut short due to an anxious three year old who wanted to go ride more rides.
On our way back to the park, we rode the Ferry instead of the monorail, then caught the train to the northern part of the park where my daughter and I rode the magic carpet ride. It was similar to the Dumbo ride except there’s a camel that’s spits water. It didn’t matter to my daughter, she was still enjoying herself, until the fireworks started.
We had caught the light show parade, which was beautiful. My daughter pointed out to a few of the floats, shouting their names. It was great to see Pete’s Dragon again. The last time I had seen Pete’s Dragon was … uh, a really long time ago.
After the parade, we met up with my sister and brother-in-law and made our way to Cinderella’s castle. The fireworks pre-show was absolutely amazing! They fly Tinkerbell out to the castle where she tosses some fairy dust onto it and the castle starts to change it’s appearance. My daughter was sitting on top of her uncle James’ shoulders, watching the show. Her face was just priceless that I had tears.
There was a few minutes interlude between the castle show and fireworks, which gave us some time to move closer to the exit. As soon as the fireworks started, everyone stopped moving and stared up to the sky. It was beautiful. My daughter started to get a little fussy as the sound of the fireworks echoed throughout the park. Not a pleasant thing for a child on the spectrum.
All and all, day two was wonderful. I was looking forward to the next day.
We left Georgia in the afternoon on Friday, arriving in Orlando after 10PM. We got up early the following morning and made our way to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. As soon as we made our way onto the main road, there were plenty of signs showing us which way to go.It cost $14 to park at each park every day. Though if you decide to visit more than one park on the same day you don’t have to pay an extra $14 to park, just show your paid parking ticket once you reach the parking booth.
Once we got into Hollywood Studios, we decided to find a place to eat breakfast. Only one place was found and wasn’t too far of a walk. The only problem is that it cost $24 a plate. The good thing is that my daughter can eat off of my plate. They had some characters singing and dancing. I didn’t know and of them, but my daughter seemed to love it. One girl is from Little Einstein’s, though I didn’t learn that until much later. She has a Dora likeness to her which my daughter had picked up on and began to shout ‘Dora, Dora’. I thought it was cute and wasn’t going to burst her bubble by telling her it wasn’t her favorite cartoon character.
My sister and brother-in-law decided to part my company and find things for them to do. I started to walk, walk, and walk some more, looking for something to keep my three year old occupied. I found the Muppet’s studio and thought that since I loved them growing up that maybe my daughter would too. It was a a cute Muppet movie in 3D, though my daughter didn’t want to wear the 3D glasses. Then some of the characters began to interact with the audience, which she had a hard time keeping up with. When the visual effects started she began to get a little spooked. There was a cannon that supposedly fired at the screen which caused the theater to “catch fire”. When that happened the fog machine started sending fog out into the audience, my daughter immediately started to whimper and jumped into my lap.
As soon as the show was over I thought against taking her to another show. The only thing about it was that Hollywood Studios was mostly all shows.
Over an hour had passed and she was getting cranky. I knew she was bored and hot. It was also getting crowded due to the Star Wars theme throughout the park. There was Jedi Training, a Star Wars themed ride, and several Star Wars Characters throughout the park, to which I found Darth Vader and got my picture taken with him.
My daughter and I met up with my sister and brother-in-law to go watch the stunt show. If you ever decide to visit Hollywood Studios make sure you watch the stunt show! I loved it. There are a few cars chasing one car around a nice sized studio lot and all the while a camera crew is filming the chase scene. After the chase scene is over they play the video. It’s neat to see how they filmed the scene with only the cars in the shot.
After the show I decided to take my daughter back to the hotel room and let my sister and brother-in-law enjoy the rest of the day. I picked up McD’s on the way back. After eating it didn’t take my daughter long to fall asleep. I, too, took a nap, which felt good to get some rest.
I’ll post Disney Day Two tomorrow.