Saturday, February 25, 2012

It really is a place where dreams come true!

I just returned back from a ten day trip to Disney World with my husband and two kids. It is my favorite place to vacation. My husband and I thought that after taking the kids to Walt Disney World three times in four years that they would be bored with it or tired of going, but much to our surprise they had as much fun this trip as we did two trips ago.

I put a huge emphasis on planning these trips. I want to enjoy my vacation, but i think if you just show up with no plan your Disney vacation will be a bust. I start by printing out the time schedule for each park and by using Touring Plans park attendance predictor to put together a rough schedule. I always leave wiggle room to change things around. For example, this trip was full of sunny warm days but our first full day in orlando was really warm and sunny so we moved things aroung to allow us to go to the waterpark (Blizzard Beach) instead of epcot.  Typhoon Lagoon was closed for refurbishment. Be sure to check out closures ahead of time so you are not disappointed.
View from our room at the Beach Club

We usually pick a hotel together as I want everyone to feel as though they are a part of the planning.
This trip we stayed at the Beach Club. This is on Disney property and was just a quick 5 minute walk to EPCOT and the Boardwalk area. We could also take a ferry to Hollywood Studios and the bus to Animal Kingdom , Magic Kingdom, Downtown Disney and the Water Parks. My kids loved making smores on the beach each night and swimming in the hotel pool. They have a great water slide here.
My kids making smores on the beach
My only issue was some construction at the pool, which made it hard to get from one area to another. We loved eating at Beaches and Cream for dinner, and We had breakfast and dinner at the Cape May Cafe. My husband loved the crab legs at Cape May and even my picky eater found something he liked at the buffets. I really liked the location of this hotel. We have stayed at Wilderness Lodge and Animal Kingdom Lodge in the past, and enjoyed each hotel for different reasons.  Based on my kids ages this trip we knew we could keep them up a little later and the EPCOT fireworks were on our to do list. We actually saw the fireworks 3 times as it was so easy to walk over for desert and Illuminations as we had the park hopper option on our tickets.

We packed a lot into our 10 day trip including a side trip to Universal Island of Adventure for my daughter's 12th Bday.  The rides were very intense compared to Disney.  My son who is a short 9 year old could not go on many of the rides at Island of Adventure.  We did enjoy going to Hogsmeade and riding on the Forbidden Journey and the Flight of the Hipogriff. Butter Beer was on our list of things to do in the Wizarding World. The kids loved it but I found it to be very,very sweet. We split one mug between the 4 of us and I think it was plenty.

Mr CC enjoying Butter Beer
 We went on a couple easy going rides at Suess Landing and the Pteradon flyers ride (only for a tween and an adult). We also went on the Spiderman ride and the Bilge rat Barges. We ended the day with the Barges as we were soaked to the bone. We had ponchos on and still all manage to get soaking wet feet and shirts. Over all we had fun but I don't think we would splurge next time for one day at Universal  as it was quite expensive.

We try to stay within our budget and in order to do that I pack one suitcase with snacks, drinks, cereal, bowls, utensils, and I ordered bagels, cheese sticks, fruit, water and milk from a local service called Garden Grocer. It was delivered to our room on the second day and It worked out very well. We ate breakfast in our room most mornings. The kids had some healthy snacks to munch on and we brought our own water to the parks everyday. Waters are about 2$ a piece in the parks so this was a major money saver. I also use the empty suitcase for souvenirs on the trip home. We always fly on Southwest so we don't have to pay any extra fees for the bag.

Well, we really enjoyed our trip, If anyone has any questions about Disney trip planning don't hesitate to ask. Hope everyone is having a nice night!