Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Disney World Food, Fast Pass Woes, and a Flight Through Space

Arriving at the airport one starts to ask himself, "Do I want to sleep the rest of the day or get going to the parks?" In the past we have slept a few hours after an overnight flight. For this trip we just dropped our stuff off and left the room to eat. We wanted to dive into our Disney Dining plan before leaving the hotel. Our group had never used the plan before. In fact, of the five travelers that arrived this day, two had never been there before. Rey and Brandi would be taking in this whole new experience and the dining plan??? That was quite a lot for them to swallow! But seriously, I was very excited for the two of them. Our friend Ricky also arrived with us on that first day and we all were hungry! You see, that is what happens when Airlines stop feeding their customers on an airplane.

We had all signed up for the Quick Service dining plan. That dining plan amounts to the following : 2 quick service meals a day comprised of 1 drink, 1 entree, and 1 dessert per person. We also were able to get one snack per day and a re-fillable mug that could be used at the hotel. For that first meal I grabbed a Chicken Quesadilla with a side of rice and beans. It was very good and was exactly what I needed after our flight! The pastry I chose wasn't anything special but still a tasty cupcake. Everyone was satisfied, but also ready to get on our way to Magic Kingdom. We were so jazzed to get started that the only shot I took was of this scary looking grasshopper from my iphone 5.
We had Fast Pass Plus reservations at the Magic Kingdom. The test for the new technology was ending that day, so this would be our last chance to partake in this. By the time we were on our way to the park, it was getting close to 6:30PM, park closed at 9 PM. At this point we had already missed out on two attraction uses. As I noted in a previous post, our inbound flight landed at a time that basically rendered two passes as void. There is no way we would skip eating so that we may use this new Fast Pass system. Our next available Fast Pass usage was for Big Thunder Mountain. That coaster is literally the farthest from the from entrance and the Electrical Parade crowd would be in the way of getting there. Eric and I had a quick "one on one" meeting and decided to just toss the whole thing out the window. It really didn't make sense to try and push our exhausted party so that we could use a Fast Pass. And, we wanted our friends to take in the park for what it is and not run past it all.

Here we have Rey, Brandi, Eric, and Ricky that are ready to continue our long day in the Magic Kingdom. We had all been awake since about 4 AM that morning and it was now around 7PM. Even though we only had about 2 hours in the park, we experienced a decent amount of attractions. And, that was with having a leisurely time and not running from one to the other. We moved from Haunted Mansion through Fantasyland to see the Storybook Circus area, then took the connecting pathway from Fantasyland to Space Mountain/People Mover. At this point Rey and Brandi were pretty sure there was a big difference between Disneyland and Magic Kingdom. 
Rey and the rest of us flying through space!

I think I want to bring up an online debate in regards to Disneyland's Space Mountain and the coaster at Magic Kingdom. I have to say that they are two different coasters altogether. Florida's version is more of an elaborate "mouse coaster". It has more drops, is rickety, can hurt your neck (hurt mine for a few days), and can feel faster. The version at Disneyland is a smoother experience, has superior effects, onboard audio, is a little more dramatic in it's story, and it doesn't usually injure your neck. I have to say that I love both of these attractions and I recommend them to everyone who enjoys thrilling theme park experiences. During the course of our trip, we rode Space Mountain three times. We were lucky enough to ride the same track all three times. For those who don't know, it has two separate paths like the Matterhorn at Disneyland. The track we rode (right side) each time seemed to have more drops than the other loading area. Can anyone confirm this?

Ricky and I can't decide why they use Orange for a "castle" color.

We ended our attraction riding for the night by being one of the last groups on the People Mover. We even had a fun view for the Wishes firework show. Eric noted that the narration for this attraction seemed a bit "young" and up beat, not a bad thing. The narration was just different than from what we remembered. A favorite part is the slow pass through the Space Mountain show building. We were all surprised how quickly the fireworks ended during our People Mover trip. This show really made Disneyland's firework show seem so much longer.

Ricky looking like a Muppet needing animation.

I should note that if anyone reading this visits Disney World, it is best to find creative ways to wait out the long queues for the hotel buses. When the firework show ended, the crowd jammed all walkways toward the main gate. We certainly were in no hurry to deal with that, so we took our sweet time browsing. Speaking of sweets, we even stopped at the bakery to use a snack credit on a slice of chocolate cake. As one can see from my panoramic shot, the park was pretty empty when we made it to Town Square. I think we were all ready to go back and fall asleep for at least six to seven hours.


Daniel said...

I absolutely LOVE Space Mountain at the Magic Kingdom and have ridden it many times. Also, Alpha and Omega are mirrored track layouts.

Arthur Munoz said...

Awesome Daniel! Thanks for the info on the track layouts :-)