1. The new WDWMAGIC app for iPhone and iPad is now available on the App Store.

    Dismiss Notice
  2. Welcome to the WDWMAGIC.COM Forums!
    Please take a look around, and feel free to sign up and join the community.You can use your Twitter or Facebook account to sign up, or register directly.
    Dismiss Notice

Trip Report Hell Comes to Florida - a WDW Trip Report 4/17

Discussion in 'WDW Trip Reports' started by danyoung56, May 9, 2017.

  1. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Hey there. While I've been posting trip reports on other sites for years, this is my first one here. By way of introduction, I'm a 60 year old single park stormer. I live in Dallas, but get out to Florida a couple times a year and SoCal (where I also have family) a couple times a year. I've been back for just over a week, but I was sick with my usual post-vacation cold for most of the week (dang them little snot-nosed kids!). Now it's a quiet day at work, so I have time to post all the fun and not-so-fun of my latest vacation. As you could probably tell by the title, it was freakin' HOT this trip - like record breaking heat, temps in the high-90's. At least the humidity wasn't sky-high, so you could usually jump into a shaded area and cool down a bit. And it cooled down during the evenings, which was nice. But from around 11am to around 6pm, it was just unbearable. And to make matters worse, it was totally cool in Dallas while I was gone, with temps in the low to mid 70's. Ah well, they can't all be perfect trips.

    I've been having a problem with increasing age and decreasing energy. I think I've finally found a way around it, although I didn't use this method on this trip. I always start out at Epcot, finishing my first day with some fun time at the Rose & Crown Pub followed by a long walk around the World Showcase. My mistake is always to plan a full MK day for my 2nd day, including going into the MK after dinner to watch fireworks. I'm usually too beat to do this, and end up shuffling back to my room right after dinner. So the fix to all of this is to plan an easy day for my 2nd day, and then doing the MK on the 3rd or 4th day when I'm a bit better rested. I galls me to have to take this into consideration, but I'll give it a try on my next visit and see if it works better.

    Day 1 - Wednesday, April 26th -

    The day started with an early flight out of Dallas on American. I had a window seat, and the guy in the middle seat was just about as big as I was. So it was a bit tight, but liveable. Rental car was a Prius from Advantage. I'd never driven a hybrid before, and didn't really know how to work one. So it took a bit of fumbling just to get it started. Once I got used to it I had a great time with it. It was kinda fun to keep the alarm fob in my pocket and just push the button to start it. I don't closely track mileage on a rental car, but it did seem that my fuel bill at the end of the trip was quite a bit smaller than it usually is.

    My flight was delayed a bit, so I headed right to the Pop Century rather than going into the MK for a few rides and maybe lunch. The Pop had my room ready, with a nice view of the bowling pool -

    [​IMG]

    It cracked me up that the pool area had this prop -

    [​IMG]

    Yup - a rack of bowling balls! My room carpet was pretty cool, too -

    [​IMG]

    My first ride of this trip was a FP ride on Spaceship Earth -

    [​IMG]

    Apparently I have a black wife, which is kinda cool -

    [​IMG]

    Things were decked out nicely for the Flower & Garden Festival -

    [​IMG]

    Next I did a ride on the Test Track, stopping off at the kiosk at the exit to do a full design of my own car and then doing the single rider. They had just come back up from a shutdown, and the single rider queue had yet to build up longer than 5 minutes long - very cool! Next was a FP visit to the Frozen sisters - still a very well done attraction. From there it was up to America to catch the last show of the day from the Voices of Liberty -

    [​IMG]

    ... always excellent.
     
  2. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 1 (continued) -

    After the VoL came the American Adventure show. During the scene at the end with Ben Franklin and Mark Twain, it seemed as if Mark Twain's hand was busted. His ring and little fingers on his right hand were cocked back aways as if they were broken. Never seen that before. Even though it was hot I still enjoyed a leisurely walk down the east side of the World Showcase -

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Since I was on that side of the Lagoon, drinks came from Germany rather than from my usual spot, the wine kiosk in France -

    [​IMG]

    Dinner was from Via Napoli. This is the third time I've dined there, and it never disappoints -

    [​IMG]

    Appetizer was the amazing arancini - fried risotto balls filled with mozzarella and meat ragu -

    [​IMG]

    ... followed by a margherita pizza with pepperoni and sausage added -

    [​IMG]

    Really delicious, and just the right amount of food for how hungry I was! After dinner it was over to the Rose & Crown, where the lovely Hayley made some excellent vodka/frangelico martinis. After this it was off to my usual routine - IllumiNations watched from in front of the Canada pavilion, a nice counter-clockwise walk around the World Showcase while smoking a fine cigar (politely smoking, not blowing into people, etc.), and back to my room. A very hot but very nice first day.
     
    Doc Disney, Laurenciaa, bee and 16 others like this.
  3. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 2 - Thursday, April 27th -

    Today was MK day. I didn't have the speed to keep up with the crowds heading for the Mine Train, thanks to a foot injured many years ago in a motorcycle accident, so I started with a ride on Mermaid -

    [​IMG]

    ... then a delicious chocolate croissant and a glass of LeFou's Brew from Gaston's -

    [​IMG]

    Next I headed through Fantasyland, stopping off to see Mickey's Philharmagic before walking up the Tangled walkway. I had seen pictures online recently about a hidden stream, and was excited to find it in the Tangled area -

    [​IMG]

    I headed up to the Haunted Mansion, as it had a fairly short line. I'd never noticed this sign before -

    [​IMG]

    Now it was time to head up to Big Thunder Mountain for my first FP of the day. On to Pirates with a fairly short standby queue, and then back to Fantasyland for my FP ride on Pan. Lunch was at the always amazing Be Our Guest, where I had the French Onion soup -

    [​IMG]

    ... followed by the Braised Pork - slow-cooked pork with vegetables and bacon served with mashed potatoes and green beans jardiniere -

    [​IMG]

    ... and finished with a Chocolate Cream Puff - filled with chocolate mousse topped with whipped cream -

    [​IMG]

    An excellent lunch! Now it was time for my FP ride on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, and then back to my hotel during the hot of the afternoon.
     
    Doc Disney, bee, Gabe1 and 12 others like this.
  4. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 2 (continued) -

    The plan for tonight was to do a bit more in the MK, then dinner at the California Grill, drinks at Mizner's, and then back into the MK for my last viewing ever of Wishes. We'll see how much of that really got done (hint - not much!).

    Since it was so freakin' HOT, I really didn't want to go into the MK before dinner. So I just lounged around my room till dinner time, then headed right to the Contemporary and up to the California Grill. I started with the Spicy Kazan Roll-

    [​IMG]

    ... followed by the always perfect filet of beef -

    [​IMG]

    The beef was good to excellent, but still not as perfect as the previous recipe where it was marinated in a tamarind bbq sauce. Dessert was a brand new item, a raspberry cheesecake -

    [​IMG]

    I wasn't right by the window like I like, but I still had a pretty good view -

    [​IMG]

    My waiter, Topher, was excellent and the food was amazing. Maybe not the top of the list of my favorite CG visits, but still a pretty fine meal. After dinner I took a monorail around to the Grand Floridian for a visit to Mizner's. My favorite bartender, Tammy, wasn't working, so I bailed on both the bar visit and the MK and headed back to my room. Kind of a failure, but when you're tired, you're tired.
     
    Doc Disney, Laurenciaa, bee and 13 others like this.
  5. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 3 - Friday, April 28th -

    Today began at DAK with park open. I had a breakfast rez at Tusker House at 7:25am -

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    After an excellent breakfast it was on to Kilimanjaro Safaris and not many animals -

    [​IMG]

    Not even many good gorilla sightings, but then it was early. I headed over to Everest, but noticed early on that there was no screaming. Yup - closed. So I skipped over to Dinosaur. I wanted to pick up Everest after that, but it was still closed. And since I was still stuffed from a big breakfast, I passed on my usual ribs from Flame Tree. I wanted to do Bug on the way out, but it was closed. Lame morning at DAK! Back to my room for the afternoon.

    The evening was back at DAK for dinner at Tiffins and my first ever viewing of Rivers of Light. I was just in time for a showing of Finding Nemo. Excellent cast - the lady playing Dory was kinda different - shorter and rounder than usual. But she could sure sing, and after a few minutes I had no problem with her in this part. And Crush was one of the best Crushes ever - really strong, high voice with lots of energy. It really made that part of the show. After this I wanted to squeeze in a ride or 2 on Everest, but it was down again. This is the first trip since it opened when I didn't get in a single ride on it.

    Dinner was my 2nd time at Tiffins, starting with the Lobster-Popcorn Thai Curry Soup -

    [​IMG]

    ... followed by the Wagyu Striploin and Braised Short Rib - Rainbow carrots, roasted Peruvian purple potatoes, chimichurri -

    [​IMG]

    ... and finished off with the Passion Fruit Tapioca Creme -

    [​IMG]

    The meal was excellent, but I wasn't really fond of the dessert. It seemed more like a frozen fruit cocktail than anything tapioca. Still a great dinner!

    After drinks in the Nomad Lounge it was time for Rivers of Light -

    [​IMG]

    I didn't take any pics of the show, as I didn't want to disturb the folks around me with my camera screen. But I really loved this show, and it won't be the last time I see it.
     
  6. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 4 - Saturday, April 30th -

    Today started out in the Hollywood Studios. I knew the crowd was going to rush up to Toy Story Midway Mania, but I had a FP for that, so I could afford to take my time. I started with a run on The Great Movie Ride -

    [​IMG]

    ... and then over to TSMM -

    [​IMG]

    ... where I scored 139,000. Not earth-shattering, but pretty good for me! Next it was a showing of The Little Mermaid. Two good things here. First, the water curtain was working again! It's a pretty important show element, judging by the ooh's and aah's of the crowd. And the young lady playing Ariel was one of the best ever. Good actress, excellent singing voice! Time for a FP ride on Star Tours and a showing of the Muppets, and then it was time for an early lunch at PizzeRizzo -

    [​IMG]

    Lunch was a meat lover's pizza, a small salad and a cannoli -

    [​IMG]

    The pizza was nothing special, but was fresh and tasty, as was the salad. The cannoli was really sweet - a little too sweet for me. I enjoyed lunch upstairs on the balcony, overlooking the Muppet courtyard. Speaking of which, I really don't understand why they'd change the Piggy fountain to a planter -

    [​IMG]

    Definitely a step backwards, IMO. After lunch I watched the Frozen sing-a-long show for the first time ever. I really enjoyed this show. The key to it was the two "historians" who were telling the bulk of the story. The guy was totally hilarious - just totally flamboyant, over the top, screaming and yelling - very very funny! And that's all for the Studios for me.
     
  7. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 4 (continued) -

    Tonight was my last evening in Epcot -

    [​IMG]

    I started out with a visit to Ellen, followed by a trip to the Mexico pavilion and once around the Gran Fiesta Tour. Time for pre-dinner drinks, but once I made it up to the wine kiosk in France I saw that there were maybe 20 people in line, and I just didn't have the time for it. So I headed on up to the Coral Reef, where I started out with my usual calamari -

    [​IMG]

    They're plating it a bit differently, but still the same tasty squid. I was in a steak mood, so I did the Grilled New York Strip Steak -

    [​IMG]

    Still seems strange to get steak from a seafood place, but they do a good job of it. I had a pretty lame waitress here - took way too long between steps, and I spent way too much time with my head on a swivel looking for her. Still, a nice meal in a unique setting. After dinner it was the usual Rose & Crown (Hayley again - yippee!!!), IllumiNations and cigar walk around the World Showcase. A really fine last evening!
     
  8. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Day 5 - Sunday, May 1st -

    Time for my last day in the World for this trip. Flight out is at 5:20pm, so I've got some time to spend in Epcot, my favorite park. They're doing a new (to me) opening procedure, letting everyone in through the main gates and then stopping them right at the base of Spaceship Earth. They had the Jammitors performing - at least, I could hear 'em but I couldn't see 'em. Once the rope dropped I headed for The Land and an early ride on Soarin', scoring the center section - top row. Cool! Now that Seasons is doing breakfast again, I enjoyed an adult breakfast -

    [​IMG]

    ... before a ride on Living With the Land -

    [​IMG]

    ... and then another FP ride on Soarin', this time scoring the middle section, 2nd row - still pretty cool! I then went over to The Seas and spent a bit of time with Nemo. I had time before lunch to catch Martin Short in Canada and the always beautiful Impressions de France, and then it was time for lunch at the Rose & Crown. It wasn't too awfully hot today, so I sat in the shade out on the patio. Once again, no surprises here, starting with a scotch egg -

    [​IMG]

    ... and my new(ish) favorite - the Grilled New York Strip Steak and Fried Fish -

    [​IMG]

    After lunch I still had time to make it up to the American pavilion for one more set from the Voices of Liberty -

    [​IMG]

    ... this time featuring one of the greatest soprano voices anywhere, the amazing Kate Lott -

    [​IMG]

    I had scheduled my final FP for the trip at Spaceship Earth. While I still enjoy the ride as a whole, a couple big things were wrong on this visit. First, the green steam engine was out again. They just fixed this after a lengthy down time, and now it's down again. And there's just no excuse for that TV screen in the family watching the moon landing scene to be blank. I realize that the screen they have there is a pretty specialized one. But they could easily put in an old black & white set as a temp fix. Incredibly lame, Disney!

    Off to the airport, an easy flight home (well, another weather delay, but no big deal), and that's all for this trip. It will be interesting to see if I can re-sequence things a bit to not so much kill myself next visit, which'll be at the end of September. We'll see.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Doc Disney, Laurenciaa, bee and 19 others like this.
  9. PacNWTigger

    PacNWTigger Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2014
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    637
    Thank you for sharing your trip! Looks like there weren't TOO many downer moments (aside from the blazing heat). I enjoyed your pics too...makes me want to try out Tusker House on my next adventure.
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  10. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    I meant to mention that all pics were taken with my little Samsung Galaxy S5 cell phone camera, and all food descriptions came from allears.net.
     
  11. PacNWTigger

    PacNWTigger Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2014
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    637
    Those are some awesome pics considering they were from your phone! :D I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference.
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  12. rshell68

    rshell68 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2004
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    102
    Topher is our favorite server EVER!!! He waited on us multiple times when he worked at 50's Primetime. Happy to hear he is still working at Disney.

    Saw the "planter" on our last visit. What a crock!

    ps sorry not good on the quoting thing on here :(

     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  13. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    I used to carry a point & shoot, but it got to the point where my cell phone was taking better pics, so I just stuck with that. It's not good in low light, but for general park pics it does great.
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  14. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    An important part of a good dining experience is your waiter/waitress. Topher took excellent care of me, while being most pleasant to talk with. Very well done!
     
  15. c.j.hong

    c.j.hong New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    4
    Had an off minute at work today and got the chance to read through your trip report. Thanks for sharing!
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  16. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    Thanks for reading!
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  17. Zipitidoda

    Zipitidoda Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2012
    Messages:
    2,141
    Likes Received:
    5,046
    Sounds like it was a great time. I'll be headed down in September and will be eating at both Tiffins and CG so I'm happy to hear you approve of both!!
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  18. danyoung56

    danyoung56 Well-Known Member Original Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    3,288
    As I've said, the California Grill is my favorite restaurant on the planet, and Tiffins has quickly become a very close second. You're gonna have a blast!
     
  19. ajrwdwgirl

    ajrwdwgirl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2003
    Messages:
    13,923
    Likes Received:
    59,079
    Nice report, looks like you enjoyed yourself and had some tasty meals!
     
    MySmallWorldof4 and littleroo like this.
  20. littleroo

    littleroo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Messages:
    2,334
    Likes Received:
    8,321
    Enjoyed your report. I want Miss Piggy to be a fountain again, too. I realize it is a conservation issue but can't Disney recycle the water.

    Thanks for the food pics. I will be eating at many of the same places as you in a few weeks. Looks like steak and fish it is at r & c!
     
    bee, MySmallWorldof4 and fractal like this.

Share This Page