Started off the morning with a pre-dawn wake up call at 5:45am and out to catch a cab just past 6. Made our way to Oak Trail and checked in early. Luckily we were able to get out about half an hour early and played quickly. Back to the hotel and out for a bus just after 10am. Decided to head to the Magic Kingdom then hop on a boat to Wilderness Lodge to look around. From there took a bus to Disney Springs, it took a while since it went to Typhoon Lagoon first. Once at Disney Springs walk over to the Food Truck courtyard and grabbed some lunch then continued on to Disney Quest. Walked around and played some games. Once we had our fill some went to Ghirardelli for a snack and I went to the parking garage for pictures (yep I am odd that way… roamed a parking garage over a banana split). Took some construction pictures then joined them to walk through the Marketplace. Ended up on the bridge over Buena Vista Drive then hopped on a bus to the Beach Club. Walked to Epcot and heard the British Invasion playing so headed that way to watch their set. Strolled around World Showcase to the American Adventure. After the show caught the Gin Blossoms and then continued on around World Showcase to Future World. Some of the group left at this point and I grabbed dinner at the Electric Umbrella and met some friends. We then wandered around World Showcase and watched Illuminations from the International Gateway Bridge. I said goodbye and headed to the Studios to catch the Star Wars fireworks then returned to Pop Century to pack up and call it a night.
Thoughts & Observations:
- We had another pre-dawn wake-up call this morning because of an early tee time. I always enjoy walking around the resort when it is quiet. This morning at 6am there were more people out and about than Monday morning.
- The club house checkin process today was a little slower than Monday and the person handling the register did not want to take our annual passes and was asking for something else. Eventually realized they meant our Magic Band. He did not seem to realize that with the Premiere Pass you can use your pass and do not need the band, we did this on Monday. He did not believe us and it caused a minor argument. Luckily we had our bands with us so it was not an issue once I figured out that is what he wanted.
- We managed to start around 7am, a little earlier than our tee time and we were done and back to the hotel by 9:30.
- Took a trip to the Wilderness Lodge to check out the work and because it is just a nice resort to walk around. To get there we took a bus to the Magic Kingdom and then a boat over to the lodge. It took a good hour to get there. I am not a huge fan of some of the DVC changes coming to the resort. Namely the cabins going in along the channel in Bay Lake. To install these they have cut a wide path through the forest and the lodge is now clearly visible from the monorail and boats. I always thought the remote feel was a selling point of the resort. I would have much rather seen them go in on the other side of the property. The new restaurant is taking shape on the former beach. I have not seen any concept art.. is the marina coming back? Inside portions of all floors were blocked off and I am assuming this is DVC conversion work, much like what they did at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo House.
- Next stop for us was Disney Springs for lunch. We took a bus from the Wilderness Lodge. This took forever. The bus picked us up fairly quickly but then proceeded to World Drive and around to Buena Vista Drive by way of Epcot Center Drive and stopped at Typhoon Lagoon, where no one got on or off, then made a left and went the long way around to Disney Springs.
- I had wanted to try a corn dog at the Food Truck court so that is where I headed for lunch. The app said it was there and open for once. The last handful of trips it was either closed or not present. People had told me it was as good as the Little Red Wagon at Disneyland so I really wanted to compare. The price was $8 including tax for a corn dog and waffle fries. A better deal than Anaheim in that respect. The corn dog itself was good, better than some I have gotten from Corn Dog Castle but not as good as the Little Red Wagon in my book. Not enough cornmeal and it was a little too crispy. The waffle fries were much better than the chips though.
- After eating paid what may be a final visit to Disney Quest. It was really sad to walk around inside. This was midafternoon on a Friday, so not really a peak time but the place was a ghost town. For example on Buzz we were the only people riding. Several rooms we were the only people there. Many times cast members outnumbered guests. We played some of our favorites and roamed around before saying goodbye and moving on.
- On the way back to the bus stop I paused to check out the construction, stopping at the Orange Parking Garage and then walked on the pedestrian bridge over Hotel Blvd. This was my first time on the two bridges at this intersection and it gave a different view of the Market Place and construction on Buena Vista Drive. I was hoping they would be doing a soft opening of some of the Town Center today since the next round is slated to open on the 15th. No such luck. They were doing cast member previews though and a steady stream of CMs were making their way through the fence and over the bridge to the soon to open area.
- The bus from Disney Springs to the Beach Club took forever. It was approx. 35 minutes from when we boarded until we disembarked. I see this as one of the biggest negatives of Disney Springs for resort guests. It takes a substantial chunk of time to get there and back.
- It was an extremely pleasant afternoon to walk around Epcot. The weather felt more like Southern California than Central Florida. Spent my time wandering the park catching a couple attractions and entertainment offerings I had missed on previous days. I do not understand why the audio folks at WDW think loud is better. Today the British Invasion set was extremely loud. We stood in the shade up the street and it was still very loud.
- My plan was to grab dinner at the Electric Umbrella since I was walking through Future World and thought I needed something. The plan was to get a plain burger and cup of ice. They were able to ring it up fairly easily this time. But my meal showed up it was a plain burger with fries and apple slices? Very odd. I checked and it was the adult hamburger, thought for a second I may have gotten a kids meal. Not sure why a plain order like that causes so much confusion there.
- I spend some time strolling around World Showcase catching up with some friends and enjoying the pleasant evening. Also caught a set by the Gin Blossoms at the Garden Rocks Stage. There were better than last week’s group for me but I still miss the old groups that I actually knew the songs. I closed out the night at Epcot with Illuminations from the International Gateway bridge.
- After the show I hiked to the Studios to catch the Symphony in the Stars: A Galactic Spectacular. I had about half an hour and its only a 20 minute walk. So I had time to stop by the Boardwalk for some pictures on the way then I opted to stay out on the trail and watch the show from across the lake in front of the park.
- From out there you were able to see the full width and height of the show better. You can make out most of the soundtrack out there, it is a little quiet and overshadowed with the fireworks at points. It is a very impressive traditional show. I was happy to finally catch it.
- I find it humorous how at the Studios Pop Century is bus stop #1. You think that is good until you realize that #1 is the furthest away, as usual for Pop. The lines this evening moved really slow and buses seemed too far apart for Pop and the line grew really long really quickly behind me. I made it on the second bus out but I think there were at good half dozen bus loads behind me with more guests joining the line as mine pulled away.
Pedometer Information for the day:
Parenthesis are golf portion of total
|Moderate ||22,073 (5,720)
Other Picture sets from today: