Disney and Spaceships
06.04.2013 - 10.04.2013 29 °C
We started the day with a breakfast at iHop down the road, then got picked up by the airport shuttle and we were off on the plane to Orlando with a stop over in Dallas-Fort Worth. We didn't arrive in Orlando till after midnight and weren't checked in and sleeping until after 2am.. On the way from Dallas to Orlando, we sat next to a lovely Canadian lady who kept wanting to talk to us and she gave me (Michelle) an inspirational CD (she's a songwriter) to listen to. Apparently her chiropractor changed her life!! She kept saying "don't lose faith", so we were a bit worried that we might get a gospel album. It wasn't gospel but lets just say we could only handle listening to the CD for 1 minute.. It inspired me to throw it in the bin!
We didn't pre-book our hotel shuttle from the airport and the office at the airport was shut so we caught a taxi to our hotel at Lake Buena Vista (just down the road from Disneyworld).
Day 2: Hollywood Studio
We bought a 3 day Disney pass from the hotel's 'Disney sales desk'. Well.. we were told we could save up to $200 on our Disney pass if we attend a 90 minute orientation of the Starwood- Sheraton resort. Its a Timeshare resort. $200 is a lot of money to save. So we agreed to go along.. but it dragged on for 2 hours. Like all sales personnel, they kept pushing us to buy a timeshare. But we kept saying NO. All we wanted was our discounted disney passes..
Finally we made it to Disneyworld (Orlando). We were super excited even though we had very little sleep!! Having been to all the Disneylands around the world, I (Michelle) have been wanting to come to this one in Orlando to complete my Disneyland/world adventure. The Disney in Orlando is the largest of them all with 4 major theme parks (Magic Kingdom; Hollywood studios; Animal Kingdom; And Epcot) and water parks. This is Blake's 1st ever Disneyland/world adventure. He had no idea what to expect. When i first suggested we should go to Disneyworld, he wasn't very enthusiastic about it thinking it was only for kids. Unfortunately for him, he didn't have a choice.. Michelle wanted to go to Disneyworld and he'll just has to tag along .
We caught the taxi to Hollywood Studios and started our day at Disneyworld with the Rock n Roller Coaster with Aerosmith (which was close to Blake's favourite). Michelle had her eyes shut pretty much for most of the ride!!
The weather was so stinking hot and we were wearing jeans!! So we decided to grab some pot roast and meatloaf for lunch at 50s Prime Time cafe before one of us pass out from the heat. The waitresses were dressed in 50s clothing and speaking in a strong southern accent: 'Heyall cousins, what can i get y'all?'.
After lunch we went to watch the Muppet 3D & Indiana Jones show; Went on the Star tours ride which is a simulation. We came out slightly dizzy.. The Great movie ride was alright. Some dude seating behind us kept quoting all the lines in the movies as we went through the ride which was so annoying!! I forced Blake to watch the Beauty and the Beast live show with me.. i don't think he enjoyed it at all. LOL. We waited in line for 45 minutes for the Toy Story Midway mania ride. We actually did get what they call a 'Fast-Pass' for it- basically you get a assigned time to come back so you don't have to wait in line. But the time we had was quite late, so we decided to queue up for it. It was so worth the queuing. It is basically a shooting game. Blake with all his computer games experience, may have come out on top . To finish the day, Blake went on the Twilight zone Tower of Terror, where you sit in an elevator and it randomly rises and free falls.
We found 2 abandoned wheelchairs by the parking lot, we thought we go for a ride in it while waiting for the hotel's shuttle bus. Its been a long day and it was way more fun than sitting on the concrete or standing and waiting..
Day 3: Magic Kingdom
Today we visited the most popular of the 4 theme parks here at Disneyworld- Magic Kingdom!! All the Disneyland theme parks around the world are replicas of this one. We took the hotel's complimentary shuttle service to Epcot (the other disney theme park) and caught the monorail to Magic Kingdom. All the disney theme parks and waters parks are quite well linked. They have free disney shuttle buses that take you in-between them. We started the day with the adventure with a Pirates of Caribbean ride- its a kiddy ride but it was great fun, bit scary at parts. We followed this up with a small roller coaster ride called the Big thunder mountain railroads. It wasn't too thrilling for Blake.. but i really liked it (i even kept her eyes open for this one!).
After a ride through the Haunted house; We used our 'fast pass' for the Splash mountain ride at our assigned time. Just as well we did get a fast pass, the line was huge (a 45 minutes wait in the normal line). Yes.. we did get SPLASHED!!
After Mickey's Philharmagic (Mickey's magic show in 3D) which was really cool, we joined the kids again in the Mad Tea Party teacup spinning around like crazy. Blake has never been on this ride before. He thought he was going to just sit there and get spun around until i told him we can spin this cup as fast as we can- a lame kids ride just turned into a big-kids' ride!! We were probably the fastest cup spinning around at that time.. Hahaha..
We also went on the Stitch's great escape ride (a simulator); Buzz lightyear's space ranger spin (a shooting ride) and Peter Pan's flight using the fast pass- this ride is so popular but it was worth waiting for. You basically fly through the skies on London.. so cool. (Its a kids ride by the way.. Hahaha).
We finished the day by queuing up for 1 hour at the Space Mountain ride. While waiting, they kept us entertained with video games which was spoilt by some kid next to us crying every time he lost a game (he was playing against us). The kid had been trying to push past in the line and bumping us for the past half an hour so we weren't going to let the little brat beat us.. LOL. Anyway.. the actual ride was awesome like all Space Mountain rides in the world. Basically a roller coaster in the dark, can't see the rails, just a few stars and signs! And Michelle kept her eyes open the entire ride!!
We took the hotel shuttle back to our hotel and settled with chicken salad and some texas beef cheese melts from Waffle House.
Day 4: Animal Kingdom
Today was our sleep in day! We were pretty spent after arriving late and going flat out for the first 2 days so we didn't arrive at the park until around lunch time. After our queueing experience at Space Mountain we decided to start with the most popular rides and work our way through to the least. We got a fast pass for the Safari and lined up for the Kali River rapids. The ride was quite anti-climactic. There was only 1 drop. Blake got quite wet but not to be outdone, Michelle got drenched from head to toe. She pretty much walked around for the rest of the day in wet clothes... Hahaha!!
The Kilimanjaro African Safari was really interesting. We sat in the back of a truck (with about 20 other people) and were driven around the reserve to look at lions, hippos, cheetahs, giraffes and a whole bunch of other animals. This wasn't really what I'd call a conventional theme park ride but it was really good fun and quite relaxing!
After this we went over to the Expedition Everest ride which was Michelle's favourite and in the top 3 for me! It was so much fun that we decided to do it again (the line was really short). The ride stops half way up the mountain when train tracks end in a twisted wreck of metal and starts its descend backwards and forwards through the darkness. We came face to face with the legendary Yeti- not real of course.
After all that excitement from one roller coaster, we headed to Dinoland for the Primeval whirl ride and the amazing Dinosaur ride. The primeval whirl is a kids ride but it was really jerky and probably left us more uncomfortable than any of the other rides. The Dinosaur ride was well worth the line. The dinosaurs charging at us where pretty scary!!
We finished the day on a high with another go at the everest roller coaster. We were stuffed after all of that and decided to treat ourselves with a taxi home rather than wait nearly 2 hours for the next free shuttle. The taxi driver was a bit of a character and made us promise that we wouldn't eat at Waffle House unless everything else was closed.
Day 5: Kennedy Space Centre
For our last day in Orlando we decided to pick up a rental car and head over to the Kennedy Space Centre over in Merritt Island (near Cape Canaveral). The car rental was a bit of an ordeal as the first two cars I (Blake) tried were too close to their required service to make it to Memphis. I booked and paid for a small car and got upgraded to an intermediate and ended up with a large car. The Chevy Impala that we ended up with is far nicer than the others we had a choice from so I guess all's well that ends well. We set off to the space centre but by the time we got there it was 12pm. I was a bit unhappy about this as we'd planned to do the full tour of the assembly building and the launch pad but missed the last tour (at 12pm). We still managed to do the launch pad tour and it was really quite boring- Michelle pretty much had a nap half way through the tour.. it was that boring!! Pretty glad we missed the combo tour.
The launch pad that the Apollo Rockets launched from.
We only had time to see one IMAX film which was footage shot inside and around the international space station. It was an awesome documentary, narrated by Tom Cruise! One of the best 3D films I've seen. We also went on the launch simulator ride and had a look around rocket park, where replicas of a lot of the rockets sent to space are displayed. We both had a chance to climb into a space capsule which was ridiculously small!