• 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.

Four Parks in Two Days with One Disney Newbie: A June 2010 Trip Report!

Hi everyone… I’m back with a quick trip report, but I’ve got something a little different for you all this time around! In mid-June I found out I had to go to Orlando for a work-related meeting, like, the following week! Of course, any good Disney fan called to Orlando for whatever reason, can’t exactly go without at least a quick trip to the parks, right?! While I was super excited about my last minute fortune, I knew Brett wouldn’t be able to take time off work and join me for the fun. What to do!? What to do?!

So I called my mom up… she’d been wanting to check out Disney for awhile and I thought this would be a great way to introduce her to my and Brett’s favorite place. She said yes, just as I knew she would, and I started the crazy last minute planning. I couldn’t get many extra days off from work, so it turns out we’d only have two days in the parks. A two day introduction to the parks is one thing… but in the middle of the summer heat, just days prior to the 4th of July weekend? YIKES! Definitely not the ideal way to introduce someone to Disney, but you gotta work with what you’ve got!

As most of you are already aware, we do a Christmas trip with Brett’s parents every year. But what you might not know is that we also vacation with my parents. Usually those vacays are in the form of a cruise, and the reports get posted on another board because they’re not Disney-related. :eek: The most recent one was on the Emerald Princess this past May and if anyone is interested it can be found here: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1202436. I have an excellent relationship with my parents and I’m so incredibly grateful for that. My mom is more than just a mom, she’s a best friend. And this summer has been a lot of fun for the two of us because (due to my work-related travel) she’s been able to join me on not only this trip to Disney, but a quick weekend cruise to the Bahamas, as well. Here we are in Nassau:

DSC02270_1.jpg


And because it's one of my favorites, I’m posting this next shot, too. It was taken after we’d been bushwacked in St. Thomas (more on that in the aforementioned cruise report):

IMG_4022.jpg


Accommodations:
Initially, I booked Pop for two nights using the AP rate, which was shockingly still available. Brett was having none of it! He kept saying “Your mom’s first trip can’t be to a value resort. It just can’t.” He made a valid argument and won me over when he claimed that the values are all fine and well, but when you stay there it feels too much like a theme park with the hustle and bustle and over the top craziness. He wanted my mom to see that there’s more to Disney; he felt she needed to get a feel for the “resort” side of things... and to him, just visiting the deluxes wasn’t enough. I knew he was right. After all, he is the master... I mean, he did make me fall head over heels in love during my first two-day trip (and not just with Disney :))! So who am I to argue?! And with that, I called and switched our reservation to Coronado Springs. But I kept it a secret from my mom... explaining the resort tiers, showing her pictures of Pop, and telling her we were staying on the bottom rung! Ahhh... I just love resort surprises!!

The schedule... or lack thereof:
Monday: DTD after my meeting
Tuesday: Resort check-in and DHS in the morning... followed by evening EMH at Epcot
Wednesday: Morning EMH at AK... wrapping up with the perfect evening at MK
Thursday: check out... breakfast at the Kona Cafe

Honestly, the schedule was so bare bones because I was unable to acquire any of the dining I wanted, except for a Kona breakfast on our last morning. Looks like I’d have to improvise as we went. Meanwhile, I had Brett back at home tirelessly checking the online reservation system all day long at work on Monday and Tuesday. With no luck! Aaaarrrgghhhh... you all know how serious I am about my dining, and I really don’t feel as if you can truly experience Disney without it.

I know my mom. That might sound like a dumb comment to make, but I think this is an extremely important aspect of planning a Disney trip for a newbie, especially when you’re not even going to scratch the surface of what Disney has to offer. You absolutely have to know your audience.

So with all that said, the big question is... will my mom fall in love with our beloved WDW?!

 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Monday, June 28: Travel/Work/Downtown Disney

We got up super early on Monday and drove to Orlando where we checked in to the Sheraton Safari just outside Disney’s main gate around 1 pm; luckily our room was ready. I booked the Sheraton for our first night because, well, I didn’t think it would look right to turn in a reimbursement receipt for a Disney resort! :lol: I headed on to Davenport to take care of work and arrived back at the hotel around 4 pm. And we found ourselves at Downtown Disney by 4:30 that afternoon!

One of the classic shots everyone must get when they cross over the threshold to the happiest place on earth for the first time EVER:

DSC02583.jpg


First up... the exciting world of Guest Services! I wanted to make sure we had mom’s ticket squared away before arriving at DHS the next morning, just to save a little time. The CM provided her with the requisite First Visit button and we were on our way, starting with Once upon a Toy.

IMG_5135.jpg


IMG_5139.jpg


Okay, so I totally forgot what it’s like to experience Disney merch for the first time, simply because it doesn’t changeover often. And seeing as how we visit all the time, the base merchandise is always the same. It was fun to go through the stores with mom and enjoy it all!

We browsed through many of the stores and eventually found ourselves in the Art of Disney. To my knowledge, these are fairly new pieces:

IMG_5158.jpg

 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Because we weren’t able to snag any dining reservations, I was trying to figure out my approach. I figured we could easily get into the Rainforest after our morning at the Animal Kingdom; therefore, for our time at DTD I was thinking Earl of Sandwich. Oh dear... there’s that little voice in my head... it sounds an awful lot like Brett, saying something along the lines of “You HAVE TO start with a themed restaurant!” over and over again. I pushed it away, fully intending to head to the Earl for dinner. But then we left the Art of Disney and walked around the corner. Please bear in mind, my mom LOVES tropical things, parrots, lush greenery... you name it! The Rainforest is right up her alley.

Mom: “What’s this place?!”
Me: “The Rainforest Café.”
Mom: “Oh, it’s a restaurant... let’s just look in the store real quick!”
Me, hearing Brett’s voice chanting “I told you so” over and over again in my head: “This is where we're eating tonight!”

IMG_5162.jpg


IMG_5176.jpg


IMG_5182.jpg


IMG_5187.jpg


This turned out to be a really good decision. Don’t tell Brett, but he was right again. :rolleyes: We were seated right away by one of the aquariums, and not five minutes later we had some delicious margaritas in our hands. Considering the completely overpriced food at the RC, I was surprised to find that the pint size margaritas were only $7.95 and super strong! We split the China Island Chicken Salad and had a delicious meal!

IMG_5198.jpg

 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
When we finished dinner and headed back out into the heat, I was excited to see the parrots out with a handler. We stopped to chat for a bit. Both my brother and mom are huge bird fans, having owned a cockatoo and African grey, among other parrots, in the past.

IMG_5201.jpg


IMG_5203.jpg


IMG_5202.jpg


IMG_5207.jpg


IMG_5217.jpg


IMG_5218.jpg


We wandered through Goofy’s and then headed over to the World of Disney. Last stop before heading out was the Lego store. Brett had made one request before I left... to return with a Little Green Man keychain. Mission accomplished!

"Ooooohhh... we are eternally grateful"

IMG_5235.jpg

 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
After we left DTD, I decided to introduce mom to the monorail, because I knew we wouldn’t have a chance to ride the Epcot loop at any point in the next two days. My plan was to start at the Contemporary, get off at the TTC and hop on the Epcot loop, leaving the Poly, Grand Floridian, and a pass by the MK for last!

IMG_5240.jpg


Unfortunately, the monorail to Epcot was pretty packed so we weren’t able to really enjoy the ride, or the views of Future World and World Showcase. By the time we got back around to the TTC we opted to walk over to the Polynesian instead of getting back on the resort loop right away. The walk turned out to be such a great way to soak in the ambience at the Polynesian. I just LOVE that place, and as expected, my mom did too.

IMG_5244.jpg


IMG_5245.jpg


IMG_5248.jpg


IMG_5250.jpg


IMG_5253.jpg


IMG_5255.jpg


We spent a little time on the beach before heading into the Grand Ceremonial House and eventually back to the monorail. By this time it was after 9, so we decided to head back to the Sheraton and get ready for an early morning in the parks!!

Let’s just say, after seeing how much mom enjoyed Downtown Disney and the theming around the resort loop, I absolutely COULD NOT wait to get her into a park. :sohappy:
 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I am loving it!

Thank you! And I have to say... I LOVE your avatar photo. What a great perspective.

Good stuff...I know you will not disappoint with food pics even if its only 2 days worth!!!

Thanks! And I know I can count on you to enjoy the food photos... but don't get too excited because I didn't snag the usual three sit down restaurants a day for this trip. :lol: My upcoming August trip will make up for it though!

Can't wait to read the rest!

Yay! I hope to have all of day 2 posted sometime this evening.
 

lisak09

Well-Known Member
Great report so far:). We're going in August and my sister in law and her son are coming with us. She visited WDW once about 20 years and it's her sons 1st visit! I'm looking forward to seeing their reactions to everything:).
 

WishIWasAtWDW

Well-Known Member
i always love your trip reports holly! thanks for sharing another one! i am going with a first timer in sept and i can't wait for her to see everything. i think it will be really cool to experience a wdw vacation with someone who has never been. can't wait to read the rest!!
 

mouselvrmom

Well-Known Member
OMG!!!!! How exciting to get a last minute trip to Disney and bring your mom along to introduce her!!! I hope you were able to introduce her to the world of character stalking! :lookaroun:lol:

Can't wait to see how she likes the parks!

It's always a bummer when those pesky men are right! I try so hard not to let Sam know when he is.... :D
 
I can't wait to read the rest! And let me just say how jealous I am that you got to take a work-related trip to Orlando. I keep trying to convice my boss that we need to move our meetings there, but for some reason he doesn't see the need!
 

Septemberman

New Member
Woohoo! Another trip report from HollyBelle

Just wanted to say thanks for taking the time for these reports. I can't wait to see how the Adventure unfolds for you and your Mom, and your fantastic pictures.


Michael:D
 

sweetpee_1993

Well-Known Member
Yayyyy!!! A Holly report! Kinda sad that it's minus your usual sidekick...but then cool that Brett is still there with you when you think of him. Oooh...really? This is Mom's first adventure??? Wow! I'm excited to see what she thinks!

Lovin' it as always, Holly! Can't wait for more! I've been needing a good report fix for a while. Waiting for Tom's honeymoon is brutal. I've taken to perusing another fan site & reading Disney wedding/vow renewal adventures. **sigh**. Talk about dangerous reading....eeeeeek!!!
 

mrtyoung

Member
I always enjoy your trip reports. I even took a tip from one of your marathon reports and bought Bio Freeze which I had never heard of. It got me through a marathon with a knee injury.

Trip sounds great so far. Can't wait to read the rest.
 

HollyBelle

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Great report so far. We're going in August and my sister in law and her son are coming with us. She visited WDW once about 20 years and it's her sons 1st visit! I'm looking forward to seeing their reactions to everything:).

Thanks, Lisa! This was my very first time having a newbie along and it was so incredibly fun, especially watching her reactions to everything. That being said, it was also stressful trying to make sure we saw and did certain things... so I hope you have more time at the world with your sister-in-law and nephew because the two days was a killer.

Can't wait to read it all Holly! I hope she loves it!

Thanks, Tammy. She is talking about another trip... so that's a good sign. :animwink:

i always love your trip reports holly! thanks for sharing another one! i am going with a first timer in sept and i can't wait for her to see everything. i think it will be really cool to experience a wdw vacation with someone who has never been. can't wait to read the rest!!

Thanks, Ashley! You're going to have so much fun with your first-timer. My one piece of advice would be to try to slow down and enjoy the ambience... especially when first walking into a park. I could have definitely been better at this. :lol:

OMG!!!!! How exciting to get a last minute trip to Disney and bring your mom along to introduce her!!! I hope you were able to introduce her to the world of character stalking! :lookaroun:lol:

Can't wait to see how she likes the parks!

It's always a bummer when those pesky men are right! I try so hard not to let Sam know when he is.... :D

Oh, Jenn, I couldn't disappoint you. You of all people know I worked in at least a little character stalking! :sohappy: I must say, we didn't do as well in the character department as I would have liked because there were so many other things to accomplish.

I believe I heard an "I told you so" or two during a couple phone conversations with Brett. Ahhhhh, what can you do?!

I can't wait to read the rest! And let me just say how jealous I am that you got to take a work-related trip to Orlando. I keep trying to convice my boss that we need to move our meetings there, but for some reason he doesn't see the need!

I know, right?! I'm extremely lucky. This was actually my second work-related trip to Orlando. The first was even better, it included a four night stay at the Contemporary. :sohappy:

Just wanted to say thanks for taking the time for these reports. I can't wait to see how the Adventure unfolds for you and your Mom, and your fantastic pictures.


Michael:D

Hey, Michael! Welcome to the board. This one should be short and sweet like the NCL review.

Yayyyy!!! A Holly report! Kinda sad that it's minus your usual sidekick...but then cool that Brett is still there with you when you think of him. Oooh...really? This is Mom's first adventure??? Wow! I'm excited to see what she thinks!

Lovin' it as always, Holly! Can't wait for more! I've been needing a good report fix for a while. Waiting for Tom's honeymoon is brutal. I've taken to perusing another fan site & reading Disney wedding/vow renewal adventures. **sigh**. Talk about dangerous reading....eeeeeek!!!

Kelly! I totally thought of you and your experience leaving the guys behind when I realized Brett wouldn't be joining me. I'll admit, it was a bit weird because in my world Disney is synonymous with Brett.

Uh-oh, how long until we see your vow renewal trippie? :lol: Should we all be taking bets, because I know you're treading in dangerous territory over there. I, too, am waiting patiently for Tom and Sarah's report. He really knows how to build the anticipation!

I always enjoy your trip reports. I even took a tip from one of your marathon reports and bought Bio Freeze which I had never heard of. It got me through a marathon with a knee injury.

Trip sounds great so far. Can't wait to read the rest.

OMG... biofreeze! No doubt it's the sweet nectar of the gods. I'm happy to hear it came to the rescue during your marathon.
 

meganw1985

Active Member
Oh Holly I love your trip reports! It is making my 30 day countdown much bearable! I've about read all of the trip reports on here...:ROFLOL:
 

popsicletrees

Well-Known Member
I was so excited when I logged on tonight and saw a trip report by you! I can't believe that your mom had never been to WDW considering how much you and Brett love it. i'm really interested to read about what restaurants the two of you were able to get into (Jordan and I are already talking dining plans for our next trip which is currently unplanned). Plus, I love that even though he wasn't there, Brett still influenced your decisions.
 

Register on WDWMAGIC. This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.

Top Bottom