My first night in Disney World had been suitably magical, and I was ready for more. Lucky for me, today was Friday, which meant it was finally time for the long awaited Pandora preview! But first, Magic Kingdom. We got up early to allow enough time to get into the park at opening time. Since you have to take Disney transportation into MK, rather than just parking and walking like the other parks, it always takes extra time. This is especially true now that Disney World has changed the location of security screening from post-transportation to pre-transportation. This has slowed the speed of the monorails to a crawl, to the point where taking the boat is now the faster option. We can only hope that Disney will find a way to fix the glacial pace!
If you haven’t already, check out Part 1 of my May Disney World journal.
Unfortunately, there were morning Extra Magic Hours at MK. This meant that there were already a lot of guests in the park by the time we got there. Luckily, not too many for us to get a walk-on ride on Space Mountain, which is where we headed first. We then used up a bit of spare time riding PeopleMover, while waiting for our SM Fastpasses to be good. On the ride I snapped a picture of the metal palm trees from above. When I looked at the picture days later, I noticed a familiar face– my mom had accidentally photobombed my picture! We used our Fastpass for another SM ride, then headed over to Adventureland. On the way we grabbed a pretzel dog from Sleep Hollow. It wasn’t bad, and I liked the thick house-made chips. A bit pricey at $9.49, but I was starving!
We met up with Mom and Fastpassed our way to Jungle Cruise. Our guide looked familiar, and I realized he was the same one we had on our last trip! It’s a small world after all… Next, it was on to lunch at Be Our Guest. I’ve only eaten there once, though we were able to talk our way in one other time (and on that occasion, the Beast happened to be there, with absolutely no wait to meet him! Magical).
Naturally, I wanted to go there again on this trip. Also naturally, there were no reservations available. I begged my sister to make some magic happen, and so she set about scouring the app for any reservation openings. Call her the fairy godmother, because she made my wish come true! Even with the reservation, we ended up having to wait in line awhile before we could order. I didn’t mind too much, and while we were waiting by the suits of armor Katrina pointed out a new hidden mickey for me: the familiar shape is punched out of the metal of one of the ax heads.
I settled on the kid’s shrimp meal (don’t judge!!) and the Master’s Cupcake. It was good, although we decided to save the cupcakes for later. The real attraction of Be Our Guest isn’t the food. The main meals are decent, but nothing exceptional. The cupcakes are pretty and delicious. But what really makes the restaurant stand out is how gorgeous it is. The main ballroom is truly splendid: 3 large golden and crystal chandeliers, and a high ceiling painted with clouds and cherubs. At the back of the hall there’s a set of huge windows which look out on a balcony, with a night sky in the background and snow falling softly (it laughs in the face of Florida heat!). We managed to nab a table right by the window, allowing us to fully enjoy the ambiance.
After lunch we made our way back to the car, stowed our cupcakes in the cooler, and headed to Animal Kingdom. Pandora time! Animal Kingdom seemed far less busy than Magic Kingdom, which was welcome. We made our way into the park, and before long, we were in Pandora! What did I think of it? I wrote all about it in another post, so I won’t repeat myself here! Suffice to say, I liked it but found it underwhelming.
After that foray into Disney World, it was time for some much-needed relaxation!
The cold I’d been trying to fight off for a few days took advantage of my busy day to run rampant, and I was glad to be back at the condo to relax for the rest of the evening. The condo is a great place to relax, even when healthy. There were several entertainment options in the garage, including ping pong and air hockey. If you wanted a more relaxing activity, there were ample comfy chairs to lounge in while catching up on some reading. There was a fully furnished kitchen complete with not one but two cupboards full of plates (seriously, there must have been 50 plates. Why!).
Then, of course, there was the private pool. Was it large? No. But it was big enough. It was outside, but enclosed in a large screened-in porch. The screens kept out the mosquitoes (yay!), but not all the lizards. My sister rescued a very tiny lizard from the pool one day. Maybe some people would be creeped out by lizards by the pool, but I find it adorable.
Have you stayed somewhere you loved outside the Disney World resorts?