May 14, 2017

Sister Sister Whirlwind Trip: Epcot & Magic Kingdom, Part 4 of 5

 Read Part 1 here, Part 2 here, and Part 3 here

Abbie really wanted to go to Disney, so we made the last-minute choice to buy park hopping tickets and spend one day in the happiest place on Earth! The last time we had been there together was 1997 or 1998 - she was 6 and I was 12. I went to the Magic Kingdom in college once after spring break.

We started out at Epcot and road Soarin' right away.  The line was 70 minutes long, but it was so awesome.  I think it's my favorite ride in the whole world.  For those of you who don't know, the ride takes you on a hang-gliding adventure across the world.  It really feels like you're flying!  When you soar over the savanna in Africa, you see elephants frolicking and you really smell the grass!  In India, you smell flowers and in Fiji it smells like an exotic beach.  It takes you to the Great Wall of China, the Eiffel tower, Sydney Harbor, waterfalls, frozen glaciers, and more.  I absolutely loved it and would ride it every day if I could! We used a tip from one of Abbie's Disney books and asked for seats in B-1 for the best view. 

After that, we headed straight to Norway for the Frozen ride. We waited a. long. time.  With many children.  The queue alone was really neat -  it felt like we were really in Norway.  The ride itself was a little silly, but with some really cool special effects.

Next up was food time.  We headed to Mexico because we both had such nostalgic memories.  We ended up just getting snacks of nachos and churros and a margarita for me.

After this, we spend most of the day just wandering through the different countries.  My favorites were Morocco and the UK.  In Italy, Abbie finally got the cannoli she's been wanting for her entire life.  I got us some sparkling peach wine and limoncello.  It almost felt like we were really there! Morocco was just as cool as I remember.  Wandering through the country from market to market and seeing the baths felt like we were really there!  The UK was awesome.  I loved all of the shops and the ambiance felt pretty authentic, or what I imagine it to be like!

In the "USA," Abbie introduced me to the Liberty Singers.  They were amazing!  At first I was just happy to get in the AC and out of the heat, but I had no idea the great show I was in for.  They are an a capella group and they were aca-awesome, as my little brother would say!

We headed to the parking lot around 6:00 to drop some things off, but we couldn't find our car anywhere!  We looked and looked.  The alert horn didn't do anything when I pushed it on our key and I eventually started to freak out a bit.  We asked one of the parking lot attendants to help us. We finally found it thanks to his help and the Waze app!  It wasn't their fault at all, but he was so nice!  He let us move our car to a premium spot and gave us 2 extra Fast Passes for Epcot and one for Magic Kingdom as well!  Since we knew we weren't going to be able to go back to Epcot, we went back through security and hoofed it to use a Fast Pass to ride Soarin' again.

We hopped on the Monorail (which is way less scary than I remember...) and arrived at the Magic Kingdom just as the sun was setting.  I felt bad for Abbie because she didn't get to see it in the daylight, but it was pretty neat at night.  We road nearly everything we wanted to ride! We had Fast Passes for Seven Dwarfs, Peter Pan, Haunted Mansion and ... something else... hmmm.  I don't remember.   OH -- I think we used it on the Winnie the Pooh ride.  Seven Dwarfs was really neat!  When I was younger, I always looked through my Dad's old Viewmaster and there was one that took you into the Seven Dwarf's mine and you could see all of the gems glowing.  This ride was just like that!  It was definitely a real roller coaster too and Abbie did great! The Pooh ride was ridiculous.  You ride in a honey pot and go "into" a book.  We were laughing the entire time because it was just so silly.  There's a dream sequence that feels like someone on an acid dream must have created it.  Definitely not what I imagine Pooh dreams about! Peter Pan was just as magical as we remembered it.  I would ride that again and again just for the beginning parts.  Haunted Mansion was simultaneously less scary than I remember but also more morbid.  And long.

What else did we ride?  Well, we rode It's A Small World, which has been remodeled since the last time I saw it.  I know it gets a bad rap, but I always think it's pretty cute.  Longer than I remember, though.  Hilariously, we both got a little queasy on this one!  We also road the Little Mermaid ride!  We were literally the only people on it.  We kept walking and walking through her grotto until we finally found the ride.  It was old but pretty neat!  When we were done, the attendant asked us if we wanted to stay on to ride again.  We didn't but it was a cool ride.  I kept raving to Abbie about The People Mover, which takes you through Space Mountain.  I remembered it being really cool and I made my dad ride it over and over again.  It was... less exciting than I remember but it was a good break to rest our feet! That was pretty funny since I'd been talking it up all day.

We walked around for what felt like hours trying to find something to eat and ended up going into some Pinnochio place to eat awful pizza. The breadsticks were good though.  As we were wrapping up dinner, I heard fireworks going off and made us dash outside to see them.  Turns out we were in the perfect location for fireworks!  We saw the ones coming from the castle and the ones coming from right over head.  It went on forever and was one of the best and most magical fireworks shows I've ever seen!

Some things that weren't rides, but that we really enjoyed were walking through Cinderella's castle (Abbie walked back to touch it, just to say she did.  It was adorable.) and seeing Gaston's Pub.  Having just seen Beauty and the Beast, it was very exciting and so authentic!

The crowds were not bad at all.  I was afraid it was going to be terrible since it was my sister's spring break, but I guess we missed the big rush by about a week.  In the evening, there was hardly anyone around! We took the monorail back to our parking lot and we were exhausted! I think we squeezed just about everything we could have done out of our one day!

It was the Flower Festival at Epcot and there were gorgeous flowers everywhere!


In line for Frozen!


My favorite Disney Movie!

Abbie in Morocco

Finally at Magic Kingdom!

Lol.  Inside Small World

Gaston's Pub!

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