Sunday, September 4, 2011

Disney World Day 1

We went to Disney World! We were disappointed to have to cancel our original plans to take another extended road trip, but we were able to change our Disney reservations to a different date and still take that part of the trip.

We all had a great time and are looking forward to going again one day. Sierra is ready to start a new Disney fund and says we can’t eat out much anymore because we need to be saving money to go back.

I couldn’t decide how I wanted to organize these posts, but I finally decided I'll just stick with chronological order and then add in a "tips and wish we would have" post at the end. So away we go!

We were driving in from Texas and arrived around 5pm on our check-in day. The kids got more and more excited the closer we got. They were so excited to see the signs saying that we were finally at Disney World:

We had reservations at the Port Orleans French Quarter resort. We were happy with the hotel. It’s a moderate level resort at the park and I think it’s the smallest one. It was nice to be close to the gift shop, front desk and food court. At some of the resorts, you can end up pretty far away from everything. Like the other resorts, we had a stop on the bus line, which made travel between the resorts and parks about as convenient as it can be. We also had boat service from our resort over to Port Orleans Riverside and to Downtown Disney. The boats were slower than the buses and only ran every 30 minutes, so we only rode them once. The buses seemed faster.

After checking in, we went over to Downtown Disney intending to eat dinner at Planet Hollywood. Unfortunately, the wait was too long, so we just picked up pretzels and lemonade and then caught the bus to the Contemporary Resort, which is walking distance to the Magic Kingdom. Resort guests get the benefit of being in the parks during “magical hours”. There is one park that opens early each day and one that stays open late each day. During these hours, you need to show your room key to get on any rides and there are hardly any lines. It just so happened that the Magic Kingdom was the park to be open late this first night.
We let the girls pick out their mouse ears and got them all personalized, then walked towards Tomorrowland Terrace to watch the fireworks. The girls were in awe that they’d get to see several fireworks shows while we were there and they loved every minute of it. We got to see lots of faces like this: Let’s face it, as the parents of small children, THIS is what we went to Disney World for. We got many hugs and exclamations of “thank you thank you thank you!!” this night.

The park was open until midnight, so we walked around a bit and rode a few rides before heading back to the bus stop around 11:30. We were all tired and knew we'd have a LONG week ahead of us.

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