I just returned from my 8 day WDW honeymoon. Around this time last year I asked my wife to marry me during the Wishes Dessert Party. In February of this year we finally got married after being together for 11 years and we decided to honeymoon in WDW.
Dates - May 7 to May 14, 2011
Number of people in party - 2
Hotel - Caribbean Beach Resort
Parks visited - DHS, DAK, MK, Epcot, IOA
I won't go day by day in this trip report because we park hopped a lot. I'll just give a run down of what we did. Enjoy!
For this trip we decided to upgrade our premium annual pass to premiere. The cost is $240ish extra. The cost of a 8 day park hopper is $250 so this was a no brainer. This also let us purchase a Tables in Wonderland card. While I find it strange to pay to get a discount card to use in WDW when this perk is free at Disneyland, I did it anyway because we had some gift certificates we got as wedding presents.
We decided to try a different resort this time around. For the last two years we stayed at POR but this year we chose Caribbean Beach Resort. The room was absolutely lovely, nice and big, new looking furniture and carpeting, comfortable king size bed, and even Finding Nemo decorations. Unfortunately my wife and I were not impressed by the rest of the resort. The hotel grounds just don't hold up compared to Riverside. It was still nice, just not as beautiful. With Riverside it feels like we are actually staying in some far off place but CBR you can hear and almost see the street and cars on Buena Vista Drive. It didn't help that our room at CBR was located right across the street from the Reedy Creek Fire Services building so we heard sirens a few times. These are all minor gripes because our room really was great but we wont be staying at CBR again.
I stopped by Adventurers Club to pay my respects, I never got a chance to experience it but I wanted to stop by because the next time I'm in WDW this building will probably be gone forever.
We decided to try out Disney Quest for the first time. Honestly the only reason we did was because admission is covered on the annual pass.
The bottom floor started out promising enough. The Jungle Cruise and POTC virtual attractions were fun but almost everything else in Disney Quest was just okay to bad. I can't believe Disney charges $43 to get into this place!
I appreciate the reference to one of my favorite extinct attractions but the only real tie it has to the Alien Encounter mythology is the X-S Tech branding found all over the queue and vehicles.
Our first dinner of the trip was for Citricos but before that we decided to soak in the sites around the Grand Floridian
Beautiful views from a hotel that I will never be able to afford to stay at
Our first park of the trip was the Studios. We're not big fans of this park so we only spent about 4 hours in it. This was the start of our amazing lucky streak where most lines in the entire 8 day trip were never over 20 minutes (the longest was Harry Potter at IOA, 30 minutes). This is mostly due to us using Touring Plans again. This marks the second year we have used TouringPlans.com to help plan the trip. If you are planning a trip to WDW you must use this service, it really does work.
DHS obviously heard us smack talking it and chose to do public soft openings the day we left I was sitting in the airport waiting to get on the plane when I started reading on Twitter that the ride has opened!
One Man's Dream is SO GOOD! The displays have changed (some better, some worse) since last year when we came but it's still an excellent tribute to Walt. It's too bad most tourist choose not to go through it. It was mostly empty the entire time we were inside.
My all time favorite Epcot attraction is Horizons so I'm glad they had the robot butler on display
I stopped by the hand prints of Ollie Johnson, Frank Thomas, Ward Kimbal, Marc Davis, Ken Anderson, and Ken O'Connor. I was pleasantly surpised to see that they had been refurbished at some point over the last year!
These things were literally falling apart last year so it's good to see that they got some TLC.
On to Epcot with the obligatory picture in front of Spaceship Earth photo.
One more of Spaceship Earth
As we were going on Mission Space I saw these awesome wheel chairs with the old EPCOT Center logo!
I'm not going to lie. We watched Carrousel of Progress 5 times during the trip. I can't get enough of it. It is hands down my favorite attraction in all of WDW.
"We didn't even have a house phone, not to mention LASER DISC PLAYERS and high definition TVs"
NO PRIVACY AT ALL AROUND THIS PLACE!
A Marty Sklar reference in the last scene of CoP. The note says "Marty called, wants changes"
I always make a stop by the Swiss Family Tree House to soak in the amazing views of Magic Kingdom.
Walt Disney World Honeymoon by Guy Selga, on Flickr
I also made it a point to stop by another soon to be extinct attraction, Snow White.
This particular day evening extra magic hours until 2 am. We arrived at 9 pm to find a mostly empty park. We rode almost everything that nite with no wait, it was awesome.
Another shot of the mostly empty park
After getting back to our room at 3 AM we decided to sleep in the next day and cut our Animal Kingdom touring short. We arrived at 3 PM and enjoyed the park until it's closing time at 6 PM
Some would call it a kingdom of animals.
I never noticed this giant billboard before but it certainly fits in with the rest of Dinoland.
Jumping back to Epcot we took a the "Undiscovered Future World Tour" This was our *AMAZING* tour guide James.
He started the tour by taking us on to the stage by, what he called "The Communicor Fountain" Here is me, on the stage!
We got to go into the old United Technologies lounge located inside the Seas. It was very nice!
You can see the show tunnel from inside the lounge.
They even have the old Living Seas logo at the entrance!
Moving on they brought us up to the old Image Works section of Imagination. Unfortunately we weren't aloud to take pictures of any of the old Image Works exhibits because of some construction. Most of them are still there, the paint the ceiling with giant paint brush thing, the sensory tunnel, the pin tables, BUT there is construction of some kind going on in the rest of the upstairs area. Our tour guide James gave the very vague info that "Imagineers are working on something up here but thats all I can tell you and you cant take pictures"
Thankfully he did let us take pics of the area facing out towards Epcot.
Looking down towards the Imagination court yard.
Moving on to backstage at Energy. Animtronics formally found where the Ellen AA is now located.
Walt Disney World Honeymoon by Guy Selga, on Flickr
They also took us backstage at Mission Space. They said I could push all the buttons...
...and push them I did! To my surprise, they all worked! It was so cool! James also took us into the unfinished Compaq VIP lounge. It is located near the overflow queue. The outside looks done but inside there is no walls or floors, just exposed steel beams with the fire proof material. The only thing stored in here is the blank fast passes for Mission Space LOL. (Note this is different from the HP Lounge located above the queue of the attraction)
The rest of the tour was in backstage areas (where no photography was aloud) such as the Test Track maintenance area, costume department, and various others. We also got to see a lot of old animatronics is random areas such as Figment, Country Bear heads, and Small World dolls. Overall this 4 hour tour is VERY worth it.
Even though I watch Captain EO almost every weekend at Disneyland I still watched it three times at Epcot. I'm absolutely jealous of Epcot's version! The sound is much better. The bass was THUNDEROUS, and the lighting was much better. I loved the littler rainbow light effect that goes off when MJ flicks his fingers.
Horizons on the Epcot timeline RIP
I've never done drugs but I imagine this ride is what a drug trip looks like.
I love Sonny Eclipse!
The Wonders of Life building was open due to Flower and Garden. I must congratulate Disney on such a wonderful and innovative use of this area of the park... JUST KIDDING
The Wonders building is a joke. It's empty, quiet, and dead. Just sad.
It is hard to believe that this was home to one of Epcot's most popular attractions. Unreal.
I LOVE THE PEOPLEMOVER!!!
Question for you WDW regulars, are the lights normally on in the tunnels? The lights were on in the tunnels inside Space Mountain and it made the inside of the mountain brighter than I remember it being.
It may be a bit hard to tell but in this picture but Henry's arm is dripping, what I assume to be, hydraulic fluid all over the place. After the show was over we noticed Country Bear Jamboree was down for the rest of the day.
My pretzel was not Mickey shaped like at Disneyland. What the hell Disney?
One of the extra magic nights at Epcot had a BIG GIANT UGLY Cars 2 logo was projected on the side of the beautiful Spaceship Earth.
Horizons logo found in Mission Space
In the Mission Space post show one of the displays crashed and went back to Windows.
Not only did we got lucky with wait times but we also got extremely lucky with weather. It only rained for a couple of hours on the last full day we had in the parks!
The final mission of the trip was to do Magic Kingdom and Disneyland in the same day. We left MK at around 2 PM, sat in the air port for a few hours , flew out of Orlando at 7 PM, landed at 10 PM, and then headed to Disneyland.
We made it to Disneyland at 11 PM and snapped our pic in front of the castle with both parks maps and that day's newspaper. Mission accomplished. We were both exhausted and ready to sleep for a long time.
I rarely buy Disney merch but this time there were some items I had to have.
1. Classic EPCOT Center glasses - I'm a sucker for anything with the old EPCOT logo
2. The Art of Walt Disney World book - This book has been out of print for a while now and goes for crazy prices on Amazon so i jumped at the chance to buy it at retail price + AP discount
3. Vintage attraction poster coasters - My living room has framed attraction posters up on the wall so these made sense
4. Test Track car - I'm not a fan of Test Track but I do love me some ride vehicles, this was a no brainer
5. Epcot 25th birthday button and Undiscovered Future World pin - These were given to me when we took a tour of Epcot
6. Personalized Citricos Menu - Because we went to Citricos on our honeymoon they gave us personalized menus that said "Jennifer and Guy, May you live happily ever after" This was such a surprise and so nice of them
7 Vintage attraction poster magnets - for the fridge
8. Epcot DVD - I haven't watched this yet but these always make a good "snapshot" in time. Now it may not be that interesting but in 10 years it will be fun to look back
9. A Living Blue Print of the Future EPCOT Center shirt - I wanted this shirt last year but my friend bought it and I didn't want to be a copy cat. This year the shirt was on clearance for half off and I couldn't resist.
IMG_0269 by Guy Selga, on Flickr
A shot of the menu Citricos customized for us.
DSC01687 by Guy Selga, on Flickr
Special shout out to Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I am not a fan of this series, I have never read the books or watched the movies but this was an amazing attraction that must be seen. Believe the hype.
DSC01896 by Guy Selga, on Flickr
I'll end this trip report with fireworks. Thanks so much for looking!
The rest of my pics from this vacation can be found on my Flickr page