Monday, March 28, 2016

DISNEY DAY ONE- ANIMAL KINGDOM

The last time we went to Disney, we spent our first day at Animal Kingdom and we decided to do the same this time!  Some people aren't impressed with AK, but it's one of our favorites!  I mean, it has the funnest, smoothest roller coaster ever & there's a barely clothed Tarzan.  Win. Win.

We arrived before park opening, like we did every single day!  My second biggest Disney tip.
This tree is one of my favorite things in all of Disney World.  It is incredibly detailed and is always one of the first "Disney" things we see, because we always go to Ak first:)  It's a reminder that my trip has started and we're about to have so much fun!
Ashley and I took the girls to meet Mickey and Minnie, while Sarah and Buddy went to DinoLand. Ya'll, when Collins saw Mickey for the first time, she started screaming his name!  We got so tickled at her.  She got SO excited when she first saw them, but then acted a little shy when meeting them:)
You never know how kids will react to characters, but thank goodness sister was loving it!  She's normally my scaredy cat.  I had a big talk with her that she had to be brave at Disney.
We grabbed a cappuccino and elephant ears ( a delicious pastry dipped in chocolate) at Isle of Java and then noticed a sign that said Pocahontus with a very small line.
By this time, Sarah and Buddy were finished with DinoLand.  The very first ride they rode called DINOSAUR scared poor Buddy.  He loves dinosaurs, but this ride was just too much for him. Everybody that we talked to about the ride said it scared the crap out of their kids too!  So beware.
We used FastPasses and Rider Swap to ride Expedition Everest, the best ride in all of Disney World. Parents with small children, google rider swap it is the shiz.  I got to ride it twice & screamed so much I almost lost my voice.
Squad ain't scared:)
Squad love Tarzan:)
Next, we Fastpassed The Lion King show and it was FANTASTIC.  
We did the Nemo show last time because dude was really into the movie, so we decided to do Festival of the Lion King this time.  We all liked it better!  Nemo is more of a play & Lion King is more of a musical. 
After the show, we headed to our favorite lunch spot- Flame Tree BBQ.  Order the pulled pork sandwich, trust me.  It was probably the best meal of the entire trip.  I am gonna go out on a limb and say we enjoyed it more than Ohanna's.  
After lunch, we used our last FastPass for Kilimanjaro Safari.  The standby line was 100 minutes, so FP were very much needed.  The kids loved it.
After the safari, the kids were spent.  We contemplated going back to the hotel for naps or trying our luck at napping in the stroller and going to a different park.  We decided to go to Magic Kingdom and prayed that the kids would take a good nap in the stroller.  Back on the bus we went!
We got to Magic Kingdom, reclined the strollers, and watched the kids pass smooth out.  So, we shopped a little and relaxed at Gaston's Tavern.  I'm so glad Sarah talked me into letting the kids nap in the stroller.  You just waste so much time going back to the room to nap!  Don't get me wrong, the afternoon crowds are busy, but I'd rather be at Magic Kingdom with a napping kid than in a hotel room.
Gaston's line was too long, but we watched him interact with people and it was fun!  He is saucy.
We decided to watch a Dream Along with Mickey show in front of the castle.  I snapped this picture right after Annie woke up from her nap and it cracks me up. She's like- oh thank goodness we're still at Disney, let's do this.
This show is getting phased out, so I'm glad we could catch it one last time!
We rode the carousel next.  
Annie June's enthusiasm does not disappoint.
Then, we watched Mickey's PhilharMagic because the standby line was only 10 minutes.  We loved this show last time and we loved this show this time.  Don't skip this attraction!
We had dinner reservations at T-Rex in Disney Springs, so we headed there next!  The kids enjoyed it and the food was good.  I was worried that my scaredy cat wouldn't like this loud restaurant with dinosaurs roaring at you, but she did awesome.  She roared right back at them!
Day one was a SUCCESS! We got back to the hotel around 9:30 and crashed.  
Notes: Our FP were for Expedition Everest 9:15-10:15, Lion King show at 11:00, Safari Ride 1:00-2:00.  Touring Plans rated this crowd level a 10 out of 10.  With good planning, we didn't wait more than 10 minutes on all attractions we did.

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