This past March, we decided to embark on a spur of the moment trip to Walt Disney World. As in, my friend, Rose, approached me at the end of February wanting to book her and her daughter’s first trip and invited us along. Three weeks later, we were at the World for spring break. That being said, we didn’t have first pick of restaurants when it came to dining but made a few reservations at some family favorites like 1900 Park Fare and Garden Grill. We spent our last day in Animal Kingdom and tried to score same day reservations at Tusker House for lunch to no avail. While winding our way through the African/Asian border (you knew those were right next to each other, right?), we happened upon Yak & Yeti…
Animal Kingdom is such an underrated park! It’s usually the first off the list when visitors, especially first timers, don’t think they have time for all four major parks. I’ll even admit to skipping it during my freshman year in high school on a school trip to Magic Music Days. It had just opened, and we had no idea what it was, so we ditched AK day and headed back to then-MGM. Wish I had gone and seen AK in her early years!
With that in mind, in celebration of Animal Kingdom’s 15th anniversary, we celebrate with some of our favorite characters from the youngest Walt Disney World park.
I went to D-World last month. My favorit ride is Sorin, Speed Way, Star tours and the saferi. I saw a rino and that was my favorit Anamel. We allso saw a flumingo plus a allaygayter and a elaphent.
This video is exactly why we keep coming to Disney World again and again. Let me set this up by saying there was no set-up! Let’s be honest, being a Disney Parks nerd, there are a few magical moments I can orchestrate all by myself. Having the kids “stumble onto” musical chairs at Coke Corner in Disneyland, being in the Animation building in Hollywood Studios at the right moment when the characters start streaming out into the room, knowing which side to stand on for this or that. You get it. But there are just those truly memorable magical moments that come out of the blue and give you that “Wow, this is really happening right now” feeling. And this was one of them.
Stitchy-poo and I were enjoying our last full day at Disney World on our October 2012 trip with our fabulous Florida friends at Animal Kingdom. It had been a really fantastic day all around, and we decided to end with an unscheduled dinner at Tusker House. It was nearly empty, so we had a nice mellow dinner with some delish food. I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of things I really liked. Think Boma-lite.
After dinner, I had planned to do a mini-photo sesh with Little Red while her mom, CB, took the boys to wander Harambe. We finished up the photos and headed into Harambe to find them.
So, maybe this happens every evening. Maybe not. Maybe the exact same thing happened to a family the day before. Maybe not. Maybe the exact same thing happened the next day. Maybe not. Perhaps our boys aren’t the best dancers and almost clothesline each other a couple of times. Could be that this seems like a silly little thing. But the boys were on cloud nine; the grown-ups were all smiles. Truly, the only thing that matters to us is that it happened on this day, and we felt like the only people in the park and that it was all for us. And it’s one of my absolute favorite Disney moments!!
So, thank you Burudika! Thank you, custodians! Thank you, college program students! Thank you, cast members! What a fabulous way to say goodbye!!
Ok, so maybe it wasn’t the same gorilla…
After a not-so-restful night’s sleep (what can I say…I’m the “too excited to sleep” kid), we were up and ready to hit Animal Kingdom. I will say, though, this fantastic “good morning” view from our balcony made up for the lack of ‘zzzz’s. We stopped in the lounge and grabbed a quick breakfast and headed out to the car to drive over in time for rope drop. Unfortunately, we’d forgotten about activating our Salute tickets.
Oops! So, we were shipped over to guest relations where the line was short but slow-moving. We finally made it to the window where a girl from Del City (not too far from our hometown) was able to get us squared away. For some reason Stitchy-Poo’s card wouldn’t work, and we were headed back to GR. The gentleman behind the counter waved his magical computer mouse, said an enchanting phrase, and it worked.
At this point, let me interject about how much we LOVE PhotoPass!! As you’ll see in most of my pictures, I’m always behind the camera. PhotoPass lets everybody hop in the shot, which is fun with characters and great in front of the, well, picture perfect park icons.
Plus, they can add super fun things like this adorable baby Simba, and you can go to the site after your pics are taken and add borders, autographs, edit and more!! OK, /end commercial. 😉