Started off the morning well before sun rise with a 5:30am wake up call. Grabbed a quick snack and was out from to catch a cab by 6:00am and on my way to Disney’s Oak Trail for a quick 9 holes of golf (once the sun came up). Played my round and was back in a cab on my way to Kidani by 8:30am. Took a shower, ate breakfast, and was off again by 9:30am. First stop today, the Animal Kingdom. Made my way through the park and out to Africa. The wait for the safari was more than my patience so walked Pangani then took the train out to Conservation Station. Once back checked the Safari, again too long, so stopped at Pizzafari for lunch. Then made my way to Dinoland for a ride on Dinosaur (using a Fastpass+). Caught a little of the Dinoland dance party then walked quickly to make the 1pm Flights of Wonder. Explored the Jungle Trek afterwards and then hiked over to Expedition Everest. Some of the group used Fastpass+ to ride. Then we all headed for Africa to use our Fastpass+ for the Safari. Made our way to the bus stops as it started to drizzle. Arrived at Epcot and it was drizzling a little. Roamed through Innoventions and Club Cool on my way to World Showcase. It was raining off and on by this point. We decided to take the long way to the international gateway (meaning walk all the way around starting at Mexico) since it was not raining too bad. We made it as far as Japan and the skies opened. We hung out for 20 minutes or so in Japan watching the rain waiting for a break in the down pour so we could move on, we had 5:30pm dinner reservations at Shulas. It let up but was still a steady rain when we decided to make a break for it. Walked quickly through the rain. Once we reached the Boardwalk the rain finally let up. We arrived only a couple minutes late and the others in our group were already seated. After dinner the plan was to take a Friendship launch to the Studios then head back to Kidani since it was still raining. Unfortunately I forgot to check the time schedule and the Studios closed at 6pm so that failed. We ended up taking a bus to the Magic Kingdom. The rain was letting up so some of us made our way into the Magic Kingdom for a couple of hours. Walked on several attractions. Starting with Buzz in Tomorrowland, the over to the Little Mermaid in Fantasyland as well as Small World. Finished off the trip with the Haunted Mansion. It was about 9pm and we were getting tired after the early morning so decided to head back to Main Street and caught a bus back to Kidani.
Thoughts & Observations:
- We started the morning off before sunrise with a 5:30am wake-up call (factor in the time change and its 2:30am in Los Angeles) and we were off to the golf course by 6:00am arriving at the Club House near the Shades of Green before sunrise. The entire process of getting there was smooth as usual. For those of you not familiar with Disney Golf, if you are staying onsite cab fare to and from the course (including tip) are included so you just ask bell services and they give you a voucher and call the cab. This is true even for Oak Trail, which we were playing this morning. Oak Trail is a 9 hole walking course located within the Palm/Magnolia courses. It plays at just under 3,000 yards normally and is a par 36. So it is not a Par-3 course as some like to think.
- Checking in was easy too, but I really feel for the poor cast members. We had two with Premiere Passes and one with regular Magic Your Way Ticket with the Waterpark/Fun option. We also wanted to charge the two pull carts to our room. So all in all I think he had to use four different computer systems to do all those transactions. In the end three of us played 9 holes for a total out of pocket cost of $12. We played Oak Trail for two reasons.. first was cost and second was with 9 holes we are done and back to the parks by 10am.
- The course was under a lot of repair. They had all the tees moved up and the greens were being repaired and in terrible condition. There were signs up everywhere apologizing for this and warning ahead of time. They were also having problems with some of the greens on the Palm/Magnolia courses too. Guess some kind of fungus or something was moving in?
- The plan was to go to Animal Kingdom after golfing since we did not make it there yesterday and tomorrow we would be at the Studios all day for its anniversary. I made a really dumb mistake on this and did not bother to check the early morning park. Which as luck would have it was Animal Kingdom today! So when we showed up at 10am it was really crowded.
- We had several FastPass+ reservations again today (made them last night). The goal was a Safari fairly early instead we got after lunch. When we arrived the line board said 15 minutes so we hiked out there only to find it was off by half an hour so we skipped it till our FastPass+ time. Today I used 2 of my 3 and a couple in our group used all 3. I used one for Dinosaur (which really did not need it since it was a short wait anyways) and then one for the Safari. The others used one on Everest which saved them maybe 15 minutes.
- FastPass+ really messed with my normal routine at the Animal Kingdom. Usually I would walk quickly out to Africa, grab a FastPass then rejoin my group to wander around the Tree of Life, then Pangani Forest. If needed we would venture out to Conservation Station all while waiting for our FastPass time. No such luck with Fastpass+.
- I did not really want to visit Dinosaur but we had the FastPass+ and I had nothing better to do so I went for the ride. This attraction still bothers me. I just do not enjoy it. I wish they would update it with something new. Thanks to the near total darkness the entire attraction you can not really appreciate/enjoy the ride the system like you can on Indiana Jones.
- Nothing too interesting to report from the Safari. It seems the animals were heading in early due to the incoming storm or something. We noticed when we exited they were not letting guests into the queue. It was only around 3:15 and it was not slated to close till 5pm.
- We had a 5:30 dinner reservation at Shula’s and decided to take the long way there through Epcot. We arrived at the front entrance around 4:15 and started to wander out to and around World Showcase as a light drizzle fell. Made it around to Japan around 4:50pm and the skies opened on us. Hung out there until a little after 5 then decided we needed to venture out in the rain, it had lightened up a bit. 5:15 made it to the International Gateway and arrived at Shula’s just after 5:30…only a couple minutes late and very wet thanks to the rain.
- Dinner at Shula’s was great as we expected. Two of the group had not eaten there before so it was interesting to hear their first impressions (both positive).
- After dinner it was still raining out but it was supposed to let up so we decided to venture to the Magic Kingdom. Thanks to some slow buses it took us almost an hour to reach the park.
- The Magic Kingdom was fairly empty and you could walk on many of the attractions thanks to the several hours of rain.
- The rain kept coming/going and Celebrate the Magic was not slated until 10pm so slightly after 9pm decided to call it a night and head back to Kidani. We did not reach the resort until around 10pm. The bus ride back seemed very long and slow in the rain.
Pedometer Information for the day:
Parenthesis are the golf portion of the total in case you wanted to separated out the theme park.