Started off the morning roaming around the Boardwalk Resort while waiting for some relatives to show up. Then we all walked over to Epcot and ended up using a FastPass voucher I had from the other day for Soarin’. Wandered around Future World and then out to World Showcase. Stopped by Mexico to locate the Eggstravaganza Egg and then continued around to the American Adventure. Decided to grab a bite to eat then watched the Voices of Liberty followed by the American Adventure show. Wrapped up our World Showcase tour by completing the lap. Time to use some FastPass+’s. First up Spaceship Earth followed by Test Track and Mission Space. At this pointed decided to head for Animal Kingdom. Walked around Discovery Island and I set up some FastPasses for the others who wanted to do Kali River Rapids and Expedition Everest. Grabbed a bite to eat in Dinoland and then we all walked around the Tree of Life garden and back to the Harambe to do Standby for the Safari. It was posted at 25 minutes (took 26 so it was close). Once back the group stopped for Dole Whips while plotting the gameplan for the evening. The rest of the group decided to call it a night and head for the Boardwalk. I decided to do a couple laps of the park. Walked around Discovery Island from Harambe to the Flame Tree dining area. Saw some of the entertainment in the area then walked around the Rivers of Light viewing area and circled back to Harambe and a night time Kilimanjaro Safari. Then walked around the Tree of Life again and did the same route as before. Rivers of Light was just starting when I reached Asia so I doubled back around as the show was going on. Stopped to watch a good portion of it on the bridge between Everest and the Theater in the Wild. After the show watched a Tree of Life Awakens segment then headed for the bus to call it a night.
Thoughts & Observations:
- Started our morning hanging out at the Boardwalk waiting for some relatives to show up. It is always so peaceful to sit at the Epcot Resorts around the lake and watch the Friendship Launches cruise by.
- Started my day off with a challenge to get our DisneyExperience accounts linked so I can book FastPasses for the day. This should have been done ahead of time but I did not think of it. So I had to do it on the move as we roamed the parks. Adding to it is the normal password issues, etc.. eventually I got it all linked up but it took quite a while.
- We caught a performance by the Voices of Liberty and had a good 10-15 min wait after their performance before being let into the theater. Past visits it seems to have happened almost immediately after.
- The park was not busy and we were able to pick up FastPasses and use them throughout the afternoon in Future World. Same was true for Animal Kingdom once we headed that way.
- To reach Animal Kingdom we decided to run an experiment and we used our Express Transportation and the others the standard Disney transportation. We parted ways at 3:37pm near the Electric Umbrella. The next Express bus to Epcot was at 3:50pm so we had a wait. We were walking by the tree of Life at 4:15pm. They met us on Discovery Island near the Tree of Life at 4:40pm. So we saved 25 minutes. Also we had a bus to ourselves. They said their bus was standing room only and very crowded.
- I was unable to get a workable FastPass+ time for the Safari so we waited in line. It was posted at 25 minutes and took us 26 minutes to board, but it sure felt longer. This was not a very good experience. There were not many animals out and our driver was really bad. I am not sure if he was trying to be funny or had some sort of problem or was drunk. But he went off script and lost his place several times. He also repeated himself a couple of times. It was a very odd experience. In hindsight we probably should have mentioned it to a cast member at the exit.
- I decided to go on a night Safari and as I walked a deserted queue it was kind of odd. There was no one around. From when I entered the queue until the stroller area I saw no other people. There was one family at the stroller area unloading. I walked down to the load area and was the only guest. The cast members outnumbered me 4 to 1 in the area. A truck pulled up and I boarded. Then a couple dozen guests showed up and boarded too. So by the time we pulled out it was a 2/3 full truck. I was hoping for a private Safari.. no such luck. The driver this time around was very good. Some jokes and the usual information. Unfortunately the animals were not cooperating this evening and we saw very little. It was mostly driving around in the dark. Our poor driver was going to have nightmares though.. as we came around the corner by the lions and she stared that spiel a Zebra stepped out into the road on that nearly blind turn in the dark. She stopped and it walked around us but it startled her as well everyone onboard.
- I always enjoy walking around Animal Kingdom at night. I think the lighting is well done and the park usually is not crowded if you stay away from Asia. This evening was pleasant and that model held. I did do a couple laps around the Rivers of Light viewing area and thought about trying out the stand by seating but opted instead for the Safari and by the time I returned it was full.
- I decided to walk around during Rivers of Light and try some of the viewing locations outside the theater. From what I saw most were anywhere from bad to terrible. You could see the boats and lotus blossoms but the projections were nearly impossible to see from almost everywhere. I thought it was interesting guests were being allowed to stand in the planters along the fence lining the lagoon in Asia. I thought the view from the bridge between Dinoland and Everest was actually better than the stadium seating in terms of projection quality. The audio was average at best there but the view of the lagoon and water screens was great. I stood in the second or third row and was able to see. The bridge gets in the way a little but it is a much better option than the other viewing areas I saw as I walked around.
- The crowd heading to the exit was not too bad and flowed well again. But the wait for the bus then them switching drivers again really took a long time. Seems that is a scheduled shift change the Boardwalk bus at Animal Kingdom after Rivers of Light. Happened two of the three times I did the route. Seems poor planning to do a change at that time of day.
Pedometer Information for the day:
Other Picture sets from today: