WHAT UP INTERNET?!
As y’all know by now, for some inexplicable reason I had the urge to participate in the 2016 Walt Disney World Marathon. If you’re interested in seeing how that poorly-planned decision worked out for me, feel free to scope out both of my reports located here and here. Prior to actually running the race, my partner in crime and I decided to spend some time exploring the sprawling landscape that comprises Walt Disney World resort. Sit back and prepare not only for a deluge of photos, but a handful of useful tips (This Bro never loses sight of the intent of this here blog-to help his Bros out!) we discovered during our inagural visit to the most magical place on earth!
We decided to start our day off bright and early at the number one theme park in the world-the Magic Kingdom. Having just visited Disneyland this past summer, our first impressions of Main Street U.S.A. (the road leading to Cinderalla’s castle) was it was strikingly similar to that of Disneyland-only exponentially bigger. Considering the day (and truth be told, the weekened overall) was quite overcast, it didn’t make for a plethora of great photo opportunities-but that didn’t stop me from getting the best shots I could! (one of these days I’ll learn how to really take pictures…)
We bolted straight towards the Seven Dwarfs Minetrain as we read prior to our visit the lines for this particular ride could reach asinine lengths-fortunately we didn’t have to wait much longer than ten minutes for the ride. This rollercoaster featured great decor, no substantial drops and some great animatronics. It was a great way to start off our day in the Magic Kingdom!
Considering we were in proximity to a pleathora of recognizable rides (and still had a couple hours before our dining reservation at the famous “Be Our Guest” restaurant) we decided to hit a few up in order to both pass the time and build up our appetites. We visited Peter Pan’s Flight as we’d already rode the attraction at Disneyland and knew it to be a solid entry. However, the queue at the Disneyworld version was vastly superior to it’s California cousin. The line itself consisted of a long and winding walkthrough of walls adorned with recognizable scenes from Peter Pan, as well as a bedroom which housed many interactive components, such as playing with shadows and watching Tinkerbell zip through various objects. Although our ride was delayed for a solid five minutes-which meant we got a very long look at the dark overview of London-the queue more than made up for the issues we experienced while on the actual attraction.
After Peter Pan’s Flight we strolled over to another ride we were familiar with from our previous visit to Disneyland, the Haunted Mansion. The atmosphere of the ride was spookily (get it?) similar to it’s Anaheim-based bretheren, although the Florida version did have an awesome-albeit different-exterior. The ride itself was similar, although I do confess I’ve a bit of a personal bias towards the Disneyland version. Perhaps it’s due to a recognizable character being curiously omitted (No spoilers!) but we both throughly enjoyed the Disneyworld version.
After the Haunted Mansion, for some inexplicable reason we opted to ride “It’s a Small World.” The ride felt similar to its Disneyland counterpart, although since the Disneyland version has a much more intricate decorated exterior I’d give the edge to that version. I only snapped a few pictures of the beginning because I didn’t want to subject any of you Bros to the horrendous torture that is the ride itself (I kid! It’s not the worst thing ever-just not my cup of tea). Although I must confess-I’ve seen photos of the California version decked out with lights during the Holiday season and eventually I’m going to have to see it in person.
After we finished what felt like the longest boat ride of my ride of my life, it was time for us to dine at the restaurant I made reservations for literally the moment after we decided we were going to visit Disneyworld, Be Our Guest. Due to the rain coming down fairly steadily at this point I wasn’t able to nab too many shots of the exterior. The restaurant is situated in a cave located directly under Beast’s castle, which overlooks Belle’s cottage. Once we were in line to take our seat I managed to get a few photos of the details leading up to the restaurant, but unfortunately I wasn’t able to get the wide shot of Beast’s castle I wanted.
Once in we proceeded directly to a counter and placed our order. We then took our seat in the large dining hall, although it’s about that time for another pro tip: The seating in the restaurant is essentially “open.” We wanted to dine in the restaurant’s West Wing (because come on, who wouldn’t?) but thought because we’d been ushered to the main hall we were required to dine there. Your order is brought to you by Cast Members who then check your receipt and provide you with your meal-meaning we could’ve scrambled for a seat in the West Wing after placing our order and then dined where we so wished. Oh well-for next time! While the food was decent, the atmosphere of the restaurant was phenomenal and was something any Beauty and the Beast fan would postiviely adore. If you know you’re going to be heading to Disneyworld, I’d advise you to make a reservation for this place ASAP.
After eating we weren’t in the mood to ride anything so we visited Belle’s cottage to see
“Enchanted Tales with Belle” as both my partner in crime and I wanted a photo with Belle. The attraction was essentially a retelling of the Beauty and the Beast story with audience members playing various roles. After the story was complete children were allowed to take photos with Belle, and since we would’ve been the only people to do so over the age of six we opted against it. Now that I’m back in my humble abode, I REGRET IT! If you’re able to snag a photo with a Disney princess, do so regardless of your age. It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks-you’re never going to see those other people again, anyways.
By this point the park was beginning to fill up with visitors and since I needed to secure my packet from the Health & Fitness Expo wayyyy over at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports, my P.I.C and I caught the monorail to Disney’s Contemporary Resort and then took a shuttle over to the Expo. We visited multiple booths and checked out all the gear available for purchase, although we decided against picking anything up. By this point we were both beginning to feel the effects of waking up so early, so we caught a shuttle back to our hotel and decided to catch some quick Zzz’s before continuing the night elsewhere.
Once we finally got up we decided to head to Disney Springs as the amount of people catching shuttles to the parks was bonkers. We spent the better part of the evening strolling in and out of shops before having dinner at one of the coolest looking restaurants we’ve ever stumbled across, Morimoto Asia. Although we didn’t have a reservation and they were entirely booked for the night, the hostesss was kind enough to point us to a table which had just cleared in the restaurant’s lounge area. The food was ON POINT (that means really good, I think) and if we’re ever in the mood for ramen or lo mein on our next visit to Disneyworld you can bet we’re going to stop by here.
After dinner we strolled through a few more shops in Disney Springs before catching a ferry back to our hotel, the Port Orleans Riverside. The primary reason I chose this as our host resort on our inagural visit was due to theming and the fact the rooms seemed to be the nicest relative to the amount we were spending per night. One of the added bonuses of this hotel was “Yehaa” Bob performed at the hotel’s bar/lounge area on certain nights, so we decided to have ourselves a couple drinks and watch the local legend perform.
Needless to say his medley of songs did not disappoint in the slightest, and seeing him was easily one of the highlights of our trip-so much so we were severely disappointed he wasn’t peforming on our last night at Disney. Suffice it say, every time we visit Disneyworld from now on we’re hoping to catch at least one show of his. That was our first day at Disneyworld where we primarily visited the Magic Kingdom-stay tuned for our next installment where we cover Epcot. Until next time, Bros!