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Thread: Trying to plan

  1. #1

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    Trying to plan

    We are arriving in Orlando on 10/21 staying and returning home late afternoon on 10/26 and I have been charged with planning the entire adventure for our family and my inlaws. Exciting, right? Well~ not so much if there are any kinks in the trip. We are staying at the CSR and it is our first trip to WDW, and a surpise birthday for our son who will be 11 on 10/22.

    Anyway, we did get a park hopper pass and the Delux Disney Dining Plan, however I am trying to avoid a frenetic crazed vacation. I forsee us really only switching parks maybe following an afternoon rest at the hotel.

    Knowing how many days we are going to be there, what are your recommendations for how many days in each park? Thus far, my tenative itinerary is this based on the ADRs that I will make, but my magic date for the ADRs is 4/24, so there's a bit of leeway....


    10/21-- we arrive at 10:30 in Orlando, but my inlaws don't arrive until 2:00. They did not want to take an earlier flight so it pretty much cuts into more than 1/2 a day.

    So I was thinking Magic Kingdom this day with dinner at The Plaza.

    10/22-- our son's birthday. Back to the Magic Kingdom to enjoy what we missed the prior day. Breakfast at The Crystal Palace and Dinner at Liberty Tree.

    10/23-- Disney Hollywood Studios. Dinner at Mama Melrose

    10/24-- Animal Kingdom. Breakfast at Tusker House. Lunch at Yak & Yeti's.

    Dinner this night will be the Luau at the Poly.

    10/25-- Epcot. Lunch at the Biergarten & Dinner at Le Cellier.

    10/26-- Not sure. Our flight is at 6pm. I am not sure what time Disney's Magical Express will require us to leave the hotel area. Maybe Epcot? Maybe Hollywood Studios? Hmmm....

    Thanks for any input.

  2. #2

    • and too all a good fright
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    Re: Trying to plan

    Looks Good ... here are a few thoughts

    1. Check to see when the Halloween Party will be running at MK. This may change how late MK is open until and impact your evening plans.

    2. Good plan regarding park hopping. I like to stay at a single park for a single day.

    2. All really tasty restaurants.

    Tusker house places you in a good spot for the safari first thing in the morning. Consider grabbing fast passes before you go in (depending on your ADR time).

    Mama Melrose is part of the Fantasmic dining package, but Fantasmic is only performed on select nights. If you want to take advantage of this and see Fantasmic you may want to check to see what days Fantasmic is being performed during your stay.


    3. Re: The in-laws

    I have been in this situation a number of times and have dealt with it different ways.
    - Used the time to explore and enjoy the resort (I think CSR has a spa).
    - Go to one one of the mini golf courses (both accessible via disney transport)
    -Visit downtown disney (this usually doesn't take me more than 2-3 hours.)

    --Go to the park anyway. I did this on a trip with my parents and it worked out really well. I was there first thing in the morning and they weren't coming in until about 2. I checked in for us then went to the parks. They called when they landed and I went back to the hotel to give them their room keys and park tickets. This worked out well as their flight was delayed for two hours.

    If your in-laws are relatively independent and have a separate reservation they could meet you at the park.

  3. #3

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    Re: Trying to plan

    10/21-- we arrive at 10:30 in Orlando, but my inlaws don't arrive until 2:00. They did not want to take an earlier flight so it pretty much cuts into more than 1/2 a day.

    So I was thinking Magic Kingdom this day with dinner at The Plaza.

    Okay so the In Laws arrive late. I'm assuming you're arriving at your hotel without them and waiting for them to check in and settle in. Wow, that really does cut into your day. I assume you'll be getting on the bus to the Magic Kingdom around 6pm after everyone is settled in.

    My first thoughts is to skip dinner as this will eat up a good hour and a half of your late night time at the park. Eat something fast and filling at one of the counter service options in the park and use your unused table service and combine them with another day's table service to take part in the high dollar table service experiences that requires 2 table services to enjoy. Now this is what I've done in the past and I'm not completely sure how the new dining plan works but always call Disney to ask questions about combining 2 table services for the what I like to call the "elite" dining experiences the resort and parks have to offer.

    Now if the Magic Kingdom is having a Halloween party night you'll be denied access into the park unless you have paid tickets you've bought in advance as the night may or may not be sold out if you wait until the day of to buy the party tickets.

    If MK is not an option any longer than I would suggest buying tickets for the Halloween party as most other WDW parks close early such as AK at 5pm-ish, Epcot at 9pm-ish and HS at 9pm-ish. Your best bet is to hope Mickey's Halloween party is scheduled on the night you arrive as this works out to your time schedule with the party starting around 7pm and ends at midnight. Again skip dinner as dinner will cause you to miss most of the Halloween happenings in the park. Especially if you only attend the party for one single night.

    If the party is not happening this scheduled night then just enjoy a magical evening at the Magic Kingdom complete with Fireworks and hopefully a nightime parade, that being SpectroMagic.

    And don't forget to shop for your son's Magic Kingdom birthday presents this night to present to him on his actual birthday at the Magic Kingdom. Gifts should be brought with you in your luggage to save you from wrapping them later that night.

    10/22-- our son's birthday. Back to the Magic Kingdom to enjoy what we missed the prior day. Breakfast at The Crystal Palace and Dinner at Liberty Tree.

    My first shake my head moment is Dinner at Liberty. I don't know, that place is not my cup of English tea. Why not Dinner inside Cinderella's Castle? This would be your gala dining moment! BUT WAIT! What if Mickey's dreaded party interrupts your evening plans yet again! Dinner here at the MK would be out of the question and you'd have to go with plan B at another theme park or at a resort that offers fine dinner dining. Dining at the Grand Floridian is another fine dining idea. That way you could step out afterwards and catch the MK Halloween fireworks from the docks, beach and other viewing areas. Plus you'll get a show of that electrical parade in the Lagoon waters, can't remember the name of it at the moment.

    As for a half a day at the MK, well that's a magical idea. Breakfast at the Crystal Palace is always fun and I do it every trip to the WDW resort. You can do the presents here or at the dinner location.

    Another evening park idea is Epcot with dinner. Use the monorail to travel to Epcot and end the day there.

    10/23-- Disney Hollywood Studios. Dinner at Mama Melrose

    This day could be split into 2 parks with rest at your hotel inbetween. First half Disney Hollywood Studios but Mama Melrose is mainly a pizza italian joint that I personally feel I can find at any city. Why not try the Brown Derby, amazing food and quite the experience to dine in old glamour hollywood.

    Make your 2nd half of the day MK, again all depending on what previous nights have had the Halloween party that may have interrupted your plans. You see the Halloween party is something you're going to have to work around when planning your trip.

    You either create a base plan with loads of nightly plan B's or you just wait until the Halloween party nights are announced and then start planning your trip around the scheduled nights.

    10/24-- Animal Kingdom. Breakfast at Tusker House. Lunch at Yak & Yeti's.

    Dinner this night will be the Luau at the Poly.

    I have yet to try dinner at the Luau so I'm jealous and this is something you should make sure happens in your trip. Animal Kingdom is best tackled when you arrive minutes before the park to best enjoy the park as it will close early around 5pm-ish. Remember another factor to your plans is Extra Magic Hours that could either give you more time in the park and sometimes work with your scheduled park days. If you happen to plan this right then today you would get 3 extra hours at the AK. AK at night is very magical and enchanting.

    10/25-- Epcot. Lunch at the Biergarten & Dinner at Le Cellier.

    An entire day at Epcot is a must do on any family vacation at the WDW resort. Never dined there so I can't say much about that place. Of course you have endless dining options. Coral Reef underwater resturant is pretty darn nice, the Princess character dining in Norway is one of my favorites.

    My big tip for Epcot is to split World Showcase and Future Showcase into one of them for the first half of the day and the other to be enjoyed during the 2nd half of the day. Generally World Showcase is to be enjoyed during the day to enjoy all the international daily happenings and sights and sounds that only occur during the day.

    Just remember to enjoy the day and whatever you miss at Epcot you can take part in on your next trip. No rushing required at Epcot to see everything.

    10/26-- Not sure. Our flight is at 6pm. I am not sure what time Disney's Magical Express will require us to leave the hotel area. Maybe Epcot? Maybe Hollywood Studios? Hmmm....

    Well check out time for the hotel is 11am. So you'll have to get up early, check out early, probably around 8 or 9 am to then check your luggage at the hotel for your flight, that is if your airline is part of their check luggage lists, if not then leave your luggage with the baggage department. Once your luggage is squared away then you have plenty of time to revisit the Magic Kingdom once more, taking in some last minute shopping, a last minute ride with the Pirates and maybe a last minute character encounter. Head back to your resort at least an hour and a half before your bus to the airport leaves. This is generally 2 to 3 hours before your depature flight time. Of course always call Disney Magical Express for updated times and new traveling procedures that may have changed.



    The beauty about this trip of yours is it is your trip. We can offer suggestions and ideas but make sure this is your trip and not someone else's ideas that pushed yours out of the way. Never regret any decision you've made at the resort in terms of which dining you went with or what park you went to on what day, just have fun knowing you're at the Walt Disney World resort and this is a family gathering you'll never forget.
    Last edited by Micoofy Duck; 03-01-2010 at 08:48 PM.
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  4. #4

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    Re: Trying to plan

    You don't need to give the Studios a whole day. You'll want at least half of that back for more time in EPCOT, and possibly part of your AK day as well.
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    Re: Trying to plan

    I don't know how many are in your party - but what I am doing for my daughter's birthday is the give a day volunteer thing, and exchanging it for the m
    Magic Kingdom fast pass. That way we won't spend all day in lines for her favorite attractions. With the limited number of days you have, this may be a good option, depending on how many people are in your party.

  6. #6

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    Re: Trying to plan

    The first thing that comes to mind is not to try and do everyrthing..WDW is so big and has so many smaller , less known things to do you would find yourselves going in circles...........that said, My thoughts:

    1. If the inlaws want to arrived later, go to MK as soon as your ready and contact them by cell phone and have one of your party go get them and bring them to the MK ready they are ready..time is FUN!

    2. The hoop Dee Do dinner show in Fort Wilderness is a great show, especailly for a youngsters Brithday!

    3. Liberty is not my favorite place, I would try Tonys Restuarent at the head of Main Street.

    4. I have found the Prime Time 50's cafe a great place in Hollywood Studios.

    5. Steve Brunbaums WDW book is $20.00 and will save you lots of time and money..........

    Enjoy your trip and while there think about what you will want to do next time.......plan a week to 10 days.*G*...

    AKK

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    Re: Trying to plan

    Your mileage may vary, but what I wouldn't like if your plan was my plan (and this may be an issue for the kids too), is that you've front-loaded it with the most fun stuff. If you're going to the Magic Kingdom more than once (and you should), I wouldn't want to get it all over with on my first two days. The MK has the most attractions out of any park, and while every park has its fans, I think most would agree it's the most popular and most kid-friendly.

    I can see that you'd probably want to be at the MK for your son's birthday on the second day, so maybe go somewhere else on that first 1/2 day and then dedicate another partial day for the MK near the end of your trip (maybe that last day).

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    Re: Trying to plan

    Agree with the "fun-front loadedness" of your plan. Also, I wouldn't do MK that first day, it's better to do that park when you can be there first thing in the morning, taking advantage of less crowds and collecting fast-passes. When you show up in the afternoon, the lines are long and the fastpass return times are hours later. Epcot might be good that first day, because you can check out World Show case without worrying about lines. Then go to Epcot again on the day you have planned. HS and Animal Kingdom on the days you have planned (though I agree with whoever said about checking for Fantasmic!) Do MK on your sons birthday and again the day you fly home. You're ending the trip with one last visit to the best park, and getting "morning time" at MK twice. I think that's really important. I am another vote against Liberty Tree, our favorite is The Plaza. Crystal Palace is another to consider. I also like Prime Time Cafe at HS.


    The only other thing that stood out to me is the Luau the day you go to Animal Kingdom. I highly highly recommend Boma's, an unbelievably fabulous buffet restaurant in the Animal Kingdom Lodge. It is our favorite restaurant anywhere, not just Disney. The food is just fantastic. Some will tell you that it's too spicy, but don't be scared off, there are some spicey things but plenty of things that are not spicey. I'm not a big fan of spicey food and I love that place. It's also very cool to check out the Animal Kingdomw Lodge. (disclaimer: I have never done the Luau. The one time we were supposed to do it, it was cancelled due to inclement weather, and we never tried again)

    Have fun!

  9. #9

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    Re: Trying to plan

    I like the idea of visiting Downtown Disney on the day you arrive while you wait for your in-laws.

  10. #10

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    Re: Trying to plan

    Why can't you go into the park and have the in-laws meet you there?

    I would go to Epcot either before or after dinner on your Animal Kingdom day, and maybe on your Studios day too.
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