Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Disney Day 2 - the rest of it.

We were up before the sun on Wednesday to make it to the airport and through security. We were out the door at the hotel sometime between 6 and 6:30 a.m. The kids were great on the flight - well behaved and no complaints. We had brought them some Disney-themed colouring books to keep them occupied. (Remember that - I'll be coming back to it.) I even managed to follow the in-flight movie... mostly... Once we landed there was no need to wait for our bags - we headed straight for the resort shuttle and were on our way. By the time we got to the hotel and checked in it was early afternoon. We stayed at the All Star Movies (ASMo) resort, which is a Value resort. (The rack rate is $82/night.) *Usually* I am the kind of person who doesn't care where I stay so long as it is clean and quiet. However... later in the week we toured some of the deluxe hotels and it definitely got me thinking, because the properties were gorgeous. But by comparison - rack rate at the Grand Floridian is $399/night and Polynesian is $355/night. Quite an upgrade!We chose the ASMo out of the dozens of properties because we thought the kids would enjoy the familiar theming, and we were right. We requested a room in the Dalmations building, which they loved. 35 ft tall Dalmations outside, 101 Dalmations art on the wall, even themed bedspreads. The main pool was Fantasia themed and the secondary pool was Mighty Ducks themed. All in all - very much worth the $82/night. We didn't have park tickets on our first day since more than half of it had been spent travelling. We grabbed a quick lunch at the food court at our hotel. This is one of my very favourite pictures from the trip: Mallory and I shared a Mickey-shaped rice crispie treat for our dessert. After that we spent the rest of the afternoon checking out the grounds and more importantly - using the pool! We swam every single day we were there. I half think we could have skipped the parks completely.

We had dinner reservations that night at the Whispering Canyon Cafe at the Wilderness Lodge. We caught a bus to the Magic Kingdom (my favourite quote of the day was Mallory getting on the bus and saying, "It's Dalmations music!" It took me a second to clue in, but the bus was indeed piping in the score from 101 Dalmations) and then took a boat across the lagoon to the Lodge.We booked this trip during August to coincide with the Free Dining promotion Disney has run for the past few years. The basic dining plan was free; we upgraded to the deluxe plan. This gave us more food than we actually needed, but because it gave us table service meals instead of counter service meals, it made sense for us. That allowed us to do a lot of the character meals and skip waiting in lines at the parks to meet the characters. It also gave us the opportunity to get out of the heat and into the restaurants for a break. And, there are some great restaurants at Disney. I didn't expect much from the food on our trip since (a) it's theme park food and (b) I expected it to be even further dumbed down during Free Dining. But it was fabulous. We had one mediocre meal, and the rest were excellent - even the buffets. Some of them, I am still raving about.We put an end to Day 2 pretty early because we were all beat after the early morning dash to the airport. Next up: Day 3: Animal Kingdom.