Disney and Diagon 8-6/8-13 2014

Monday, August 18, 2014 6:31 PM

I will try not to make this into a huge trip report. I will just comment on some things I noticed here and there. This was the first time I was doing Disney on my own and I loved every min. of it. I arrived at Orlando early, so the first park I spend the day at was Animal Kingdom.

AK-Its a bugs life was still not open. Some cranes were around the tree of life constructing Avatar stuff I assume. The right side of Whirl was for FP+ users only so I only rode the left side of the spinning coaster. The single rider line at Everest really was moving quickly. I got a FP+ ride, three single rider, and one in the regular queue. Dining-just did a counter service on my basic dining plan. Chicken fingers and fries were great.

MK-Took advantage of the 8am extra magic hour and immediately walked with the rest of the early risers to the mine train. The mine train was really cool. I did not expect the tilting to be as good as it was. My only qualm is I wish the ride was a big longer. And there are interactive things in the queue that really slowed the line down.///I got an email to do a "test lunch" at be our guest so my quick service was there. Very nice theming inside. I sat in the middle room. I guess the dark room had a little more going on inside of it//The haunted mansion interactive queue props were really cool. My favorite was the instruments and the sea captain on the top. For dinner I ate at the plaza restaurant with a good view of the castle. I miss spectromagic. Hope it comes back soon

Epcot-Magic hour was in the evening. Got there for opening and went on test track first. I am a fan of the old story line of test track. I did not like the new design your car (which takes up some time) and the new course. Maybe the whole crash test got touchy and that's why they changed it? Went to Mission to Mars and that is still the only ride I come close to getting sick on. Yes I picked more intense on purpose and the lift off really gets to me every time//I ate at Le Cellier In Canada. Some Disney diehards claim the filet mignon isn't quite the same as it was years ago and I agree. Their menus are very cool (they light up when you open them) Illuminations is still my favorite night time show at Disney.

Hollywood Studios-Again took advantage of extra magic hour in the morning and went right to Toy Story ride. Anna and Elsa officially welcomed everyone around 11am with a small parade. Again neat and different. Tower of Terror and Aerosmith always deliver great rides. I ate for the first time at the Brown Derby with the Fantasmic VIP. Food was great. Cool dessert options. For Fantasmic the time they gave me to show up practically most of the center section was pretty full. I still found a spot 9 rows from the front. I wish they would give you the option to do the dining package with the later Fantasmic show. Fantasmic ended around 9:25. They the made rush to get to the socerer hat was on to see the Frozen fireworks show at 9:45pm. It was nice to see fireworks over the Chinese Theater (remings me of sorcery in the sky and the big inflatable mickey from many years ago)

Universal-I arrived super early as on site guests were allowed admission 7-8am. I started on the IOA side and went to the single rider queue to ride Wiz World of HP. Got in in about 10 mins. (I already saw Wiz world back in 2010 FYI) Took the express over to US side and waited 2 hrs 15 for the Gringotts ride. I choose not to do the single rider line because I did not want to miss the pre show. The ride was amazing. A lot like Mummy just a big more intense. Loved the first drop on the coaster. Diagon Alley was great. Its more spread out and I like that the shops are bigger. I ate lunch at the Three Broomsticks (it started raining) and the fish and chips got my thumbs up approval. Before the rain came however I was able to ride RR Rocket. They put me in the last row and the first drop yank was incredible. Last time I rode it, I was in the first row. The minions mayhem was disappointing. Wait was not worth it but it was new since my last visit in 2010. Transformers was cool but Spider beats it out for me. I think its how the ride interacts more with the fire etc. My last comment is I really like the idea of the new interactive wands they were selling. Around 44-45 bucks a pop, they work on both sides of Wiz World. Some kids had trouble picking up the sensors in the different places, but from what I saw it was really neat. What was weird is my debit card refused to work at Universal. Worked everyplace else expect in the theme park. Glad it started working at Margaritaville. Beers much deserved after a long day in the park. I finished the park waiting 45 mins in single rider line for Gringotts. The timing on one of the screens was off so we got to re ride it again (short 10 min wait)

Monday was downtown Disney. Lots of construction going on for steamboat springs. The concept art looks very nice. I do miss the Adventurers club.

Tues was my first visit to Blizzard Beach. Went right to Summit Plummet and WOW. Awesome sauce. Crusher Gusher had great air time but the landing hurt. I re rode SP two more times and got a bruised butt my third time around. I met up with some friends who happened to be down there and we did the family raft ride. We flew right high up and it was enjoyable. They invited me to eat at the California Grill. They were annual Vacation Club pass holders and were talking to me about how they love the VC program. That food was some of the best food I have ate in my life. Start quality service, great night view of the castle. And their filet mignon totally trumps Canada. I am def eating there my next visit. Although they are Disney lifers and they were bummed the chocolate lava cake was taken off the menu. We did have a great waiter "Walter" who has been working there around 15-19 years.

A great solo trip for me. I probably will go down when a few more new things get added. I really want to venture out for my first international trip and am thinking about Disneyland Paris a lot. We shall see! Have a magical day everyone.

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