Thursday, 4 July 2013

The Magic Kingdom

We didn't end up leaving at 8.  We woke up at 7.30, but managed to get out the door by 8.30.  We drove the 20 minute drive to the Magic Kingdom, paid for parking ($15, ouch), and drove to the Heroes parking lot.  As we were not too far from the ticket area, we decided to walk it.  It did not take long.  We found a ticket pick up machine, and collected out paper tickets.

From the ticket area, we had a choice wether to get the monorail or the boat to the Magic Kingdom.  We opted for the monorail.  It was busy, to be expected, but the queues moved quickly, and within 5 minutes we found ourselves on the train.  Riding into the Magic Kingdom was amazing.  We arrived at the same time as the steam train.  By now it was about 9.15.  We went through the gates, and began heading down Main Street.  We were quickly asked to move on to the sidewalk, as there was a parade coming through by the people of Main Street.  We watched a little bit of this, before moving on down towards the circle, where all the areas branch from.  We had already decided to head to Tomorrow Land, as we thought there were some things in there that might interest the boys.

The first ride we went on was the Tommorowland Transit Authority People Mover.  This was a ride that all of us could go on, a theme for the holiday.  We all enjoyed this ride.  It basically took you through all the rides in Tommorland.  So we were able to ride in a car through Space Mountain, Monsters Inc Laugh Floor, Buzz Lightyears Space Ranger Spin.  This was a good ride for us.  Nice and gentle, and it enabled the boys to see what they wanted to do next.

As soon as they saw the Tommorowland Speedway, they wanted to go on it.  Luckily, they were all tall enough, even Seb.  Even better, there was only a 20 minute wait.  We queued up, and decided who was riding with who.  I rode with Isaac, Paul took Oliver and Seb.  We went in the last car of the ride, Paul and co took the first of the next row round.  I so shouldn't have let Isaac drive, he steered from side to side.  Luckily, I was in charge of the gas.  All the boys really enjoyed this one, and wanted to go again, but by the time we had finished the wait time was up to 40 minutes.

We stopped for a quick snack, before walking on to Fantasyland, and the next ride, the Mad Tea Party. This is a spinning teacup ride.  Not my favorite, but the wait time was only 20 minutes again, and the boys really enjoyed this.  Again, this was a ride we could all go on in the same teacup.  We then headed further into Fantasyland.  This is a new area of Magic Kingdom (I will put some links up when I get home, I need to do a bit of research.....). 

We were gong to go on the Dumbo flying elephants ride, but decided the queue was too long.  I had heard that the Barnstormer was a good roller coaster for kids, and was a Goofy inspired ride.  I was mightily surprised that Seb was tall enough at 35 inched to ride the roller coaster.  I think the people working it were also a bit surprised, given he seems so small.  The wait was only 20 minutes, so we went for it.  We got into a carriage, 3 rows of seats per carriage, Isaac and Paul up front, Oliver on his own in the middle, the Seb and I at the back.

  This was a surprisingly fast roller coaster, that really threw you round the corners.  I had a good hold of Seb, thank goodness, as Paul did of Isaac. From their faces you could not tell if they liked it or not, but the all said it was awesome afterwards. It is not too long,or high.  It is quite fast, and has high speed corners.  Even Seb tried to tell us how awesome it was.  From here, the boys had a quick splash in  Casey Jr Splash and Soak centre.  The weather though, was not playing ball.  Isaac wanted to go into Pete's Silly Sideshow.  We did not realize it, but this gave us a good opportunity to meet some characters.  The wait time was only 20 minutes, and it seemed to go a lot quicker. Seb got a bit freaked by Goofy in his costume, but this could be because he was about 7 foot tall.  Isaac was not too keen either.  Oliver loved it.  Both Isaac and Oliver were happy to go and meet Donald Duck though.
We then headed further into Fantasyland.  Under the Sea-the journey of the Little Mermaid was calling our name.  The sign said the queue was about 30 minutes, so we decided to go for it.  There were a few bits and pieces to keep the boys amused mid queue, but not much.  It took a good 30 minutes to get to the front.  Paul and Oliver boarded one clam shell, I took the others in the next one.  It is basically a ride to tell the story of the Little Mermaid, but without all the nasty, boring, sloppy bits.  Good animatronics, makes me glad I have 3 boys.  
Next we attempted to go and get some lunch.  Unfortunately the one place we wanted for a sit down meal was full to bursting, queuing  out the door in fact.  So we ended up getting some quick food from Friar Tucks Nook in Fantasyland.  Hot dogs and chips (that's crisps to those in the UK) for Paul and I, and nuggets and chips for the chimps.  We ate outside, not the best food, but we were hungry.  After lunch we headed through the castle.  I swear last time you came here you could not walk through it,  but I may be wrong.  
We headed towards Liberty Square, over the bridge, towards Frontierland.  This is when we hit the crowds.  Man, it was busy round near Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain.  The weather also started turning a bit nasty.  As we had every intention of retutning in the evening, we decided to cut our losses and head for home.  We boarded the train, which only runs one way, and headed for the entrance to the park.  From here we took the monorail back to the ticket office, then a tram back to the car park.  It took a full hour to get from Frontierland to the car.
We were all absolutely shattered.  Isaac and Seb both fell asleep on the way home, though Isaac woke up when we got back and Seb slept for an hour or so.  Not long after we got home, the heavens well and truly opened, and it thundered and rained for most of the time we were home.  

It was just stopping raining when we headed back to the park.  We caught the tram from the car park. By now, everywhere was soaked.  Our intention was to try and stay for the the electrical light parade at 9pm.  We decided get the boat to the park.  This was a nice old fashioned boat, with hardly anyone on it.  Very pleasurable.  Once we reached the park, we got on the train back to Frontierland, meaning we had done a full lap of the park by train.  Frontierland was just as busy.  We got fast passes for Splash Mountain, just in case we decided to go on it later.  We headed to Tom Sawyers Island by raft.  We had just finished doing the Fort on the Island, when the cast members said we had to leave, and head back to the raft port.  We got there just as the heavens opened.  There were many people waiting for a raft, and we boarded a fully loaded raft in the pouring rain, while thunder and lightening happened all around us.  
We went into the Hall of Presidents to escape the rain, but decided not to stay for the show.  We thought we would escape the rain by heading for some dinner.  We ended up back in Fantasyland, after getting through more rain.  We ate at Pinnochio Village Haus, where the boys shared pizza and nuggets, and Paul and I had a pizza each.  
By the time we had finished, it was still raining, the boys were soaked, and it didn't feel like there was much more we could achieve.  By now it was 7.45pm.  We headed down to the parade route.  It was packed. Everyone was already taking their spots on the side of the road.  We did not think the boys would last over an hour sitting in the rain.  We decided to cut our losses and head home.  Again, it took nearly an hour to get from Main Street by the castle to the car.  

Seb fell asleep in the car on the way home, and barely stirred when we got him ready and put him into bed.  Isaac also went very happily.  Oliver went not long after.

We really enjoyed the Magic Kingdom, but the weather was so against us.....
This is just my account on how our day went.  When I get home, I shall be doing a 'hints and tips' post to give my opinion on how to do Disney and Orlando theme parks in general.  We did it at our convenience, though I have read many things on how to do it cheaply, quickly and with kids of all ages....

Watch this space


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