Posts Tagged ‘walt disney world’

Review: Thanksgiving Weekend at Walt Disney World

by on December 5, 2016

thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

If you’re familiar with the TouringPlans Crowd Calendar, you know that major holidays at Walt Disney World can be intense when it comes to lines and crowds. But this year, I abandoned all logic and spent Thanksgiving with my family at Walt Disney World. I survived, but would I do it again? Read on for my Review: Thanksgiving Weekend at Walt Disney World.

November 23rd

My concern over the holiday crowds and never ending lines wasn’t limited to the confines of Walt Disney World. Actually, I was more concerned over what awaited me at my local airport since my family and I were flying into Orlando the day before Thanksgiving. One of the busiest travel days of the year!

Fortunately, our Frontier Airlines flight was scheduled to depart at 7:00 A.M.; and while the queues for security had already been extended, we made it through with plenty of time to spare and with no delays.

I was shocked when we found that there were no lines for Disney’s Magical Express at Orlando International Airport. Maybe because it was still early in the day? Or maybe Disney was more than prepared for the holiday rush? Regardless, we walked right on our bus bound for Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter Resort. We had never stayed at the French Quarter as Port Orleans Riverside is the Moderate Resort we gravitate to; but, thankfully we loved the French Quarter! It was smaller and more intimate, yet never once felt crowded or chaotic.

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Express Transportation Being Added to the Walt Disney World Resort

by on December 2, 2016

Express Transportation at Walt Disney World

©Rikki Niblett

Beginning December 7, the Walt Disney World Resort is introducing Express Transportation, a brand new transportation option that provides Guests a faster and convenient way to travel between the four Walt Disney World theme parks, for a price.

This Express Transportation is a special add on that can purchased by Guests who have purchased park hopper tickets. For single-day service, Express Transportation can be added for $15 per person. For multi-day service, it is $24 per person which is valid for seven consecutive days from the day of sale. (Annual Passholders can also chose to add on the single-day option.)

This option will take Guests from inside one them park and transport them straight into another by allowing Guests to travel between backstage locations.

Pick up locations in each park will be found near the exit of Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin in Tomorrowland at the Magic Kingdom, east of Spaceship Earth at Epcot, near Rock n’ Roller Coaster at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and near Kilimanjaro Safaris entrance at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Express Transportation is available from 10:00 a.m. until park close. Pick up will occur every 30 minutes.

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PizzeRizzo: Classic Disney Pizza Under New Management

by on November 30, 2016

Neon and classic pizzeria signs welcome you to PizzeRizzo.I have a secret. It’s kind of shameful in the eyes of many Disney fans. It’s definitely shameful in the eyes of those who enjoy good food.

Are you ready?

I was really sad when Pizza Planet closed earlier this year at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, because I actually liked the pizza there.

I’m sure many are now completely questioning any dining reviews I’ve ever written, but it’s true! It’s not the best pizza at Walt Disney World (which I’ll rank in an upcoming post), but it served its purpose – fast, relatively cheap, and meets the cheese-sauce-bread ratio that qualifies it as “pizza”. I wondered, therefore, whether changes made in the transformation of the Toy Story-themed Pizza Planet to the newly opened Muppets-themed PizzeRizzo would also affect the pizza.

In short: no, it’s still the same pizza (and side salads, and meatball subs). For many of you, that’s probably enough of a review to know what you’re getting into (same food, new themed area surrounding The new ordering area at PizzeRizzo is much bigger than before.your dining table). I will say, though, that a few things about PizzeRizzo pleasantly surprised me, which I’ll share below.

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TouringPlansTV: Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2016 + Video

by on November 22, 2016

© Disney

Ho-ho-hope you’re having a great day!

You may be thinking, “What’s with the holiday pun? It’s not even December yet!”

You see, I’m already in the Christmas spirit as I’ve just been to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Walt Disney World!

Allow me to share my tips and tricks below!

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Celebrate Mickey Mouse’s Birthday at Disney Parks

by on November 17, 2016

Mickey Mouse Birthday

©Disney

M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E

Tomorrow, November 18, Disney is celebrating the main mouse’s birthday and Guests are invited to take part in the fun.

At Walt Disney World, to celebrate, Guests will be able to take part in a birthday edition of the Move It! Shake It! Dance and Play It! Street Party. At Disneyland, there will be a special pre-parade prior to the A Christmas Fantasy Parade to honor Mickey.

Guests are also invited to pick up a commemorative “Happy Birthday Mickey” button at both the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

If you won’t be visiting one of the theme parks tomorrow, you can still celebrate Mickey Mouse’s birthday by watching ABC’s Good Morning America, as a new music video for the song, “What We Got” will debut. Everyone is invited to send their birthday wishes and show their celebrations by using the hashtag #HappyBirthdayMickey.

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Walt Disney World Introduces New Limited Time 4 Park Magic Ticket Offer

by on November 15, 2016

4 Park Magic Ticket Offer

©Disney

For a limited time, Disney is offering a special way for Guests to visit the four Walt Disney World theme parks. The new 4 Park Magic Ticket is now available for purchase and only costs $70 per day. (For a total $279, plus tax for adults ages 10 and up and $259, plus tax for ages 3-9.). For comparison, a 4-Day Magic Your Way Ticket is $325 for adults ages 10 and up and $305 per child ages 3-9.)  This ticket option gives Guests admission to each of the four theme parks, once each on four separate days.

The 4 Park Magic Ticket is valid for a total of four admissions to the Walt Disney World theme parks and can be used to enter each theme park one time only. That means one day of admission to the Magic Kingdom, one day of admission to Epcot, one day of admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and one day of admission to Disney’s Animal Kingdom on four separate days. These tickets may not be used to enter the same Park more than once.

With the 4 Park Magic Ticket, there are no substitutions. This means that you have to purchase all four days worth of tickets and you must go to one park each day. You cannot, for example, purchase two of the days at $70 each (for $140) and just visit Magic Kingdom and Epcot.

This ticket option won’t be available to buy for long. The 4 Park Magic Ticket can only be purchased until March 5, 2017. These tickets must be used within 14 days of first use or by May 26, 2017. In addition, there are a few black out days to be aware of, which include the holiday and Easter season. The black out dates include: December 17 through January 2 and April 10-21.

If you’re looking to experience the four Walt Disney World theme parks in one trip and only go to one park each day, this 4 Park Magic Ticket is a great option to take advantage of!

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A Frozen Holiday Wish – Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2016 + Video

by on November 15, 2016

Photo - Matt Stroshane

Photo – Matt Stroshane

For today’s TouringPlansTV, I’m bringing you with me to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party!

Watch Elsa freeze Cinderella Castle in A Frozen Holiday Wish.

Enjoy!

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Observations From Visiting 3 Different Disney Resorts in 16 Days

by on November 4, 2016

Sleeping Beauty Castle ParisMy wife and I recently decided to visit Paris for a week, and as you may be aware, there is a Disney resort there — so being the complete Disney dorks that we are, paying a visit to Disneyland Paris was a must-do. Of course, our daughter was staying in the Orlando area with her grandparents and we had to come back through there to get her, so we decided to pay the Mouse a quick visit at Walt Disney World while we got over our jetlag. Shortly after arriving back home, I had to head out to Southern California for work, and it presented me with an opportunity — even if only briefly — to visit my third Disney resort in just over 2 weeks. I had to take it.

So, apart from the whirlwind of travel, what is it like to experience every Disney resort in the Western Hemisphere back-to-back-to-back? The three resorts share similar layouts and several attractions, but my biggest takeaway is how much it highlighted the differences between these outwardly similar parks. So, without further ado, let me share some of the biggest stuff I noticed, and pass out a few superlatives…

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TouringPlansTV: Disney’s BoardWalk Inn Resort – Part One + Video

by on November 1, 2016

BoardWalk_mainbuildingWelcome back to TouringPlansTV!

Today, I’m giving you an overview of my FAVORITE resort at Walt Disney World:

Disney’s BoardWalk Inn!

I’ll be delving into the resort’s theme, rooms, room views and transportation.

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Sanaa Breakfast: A Solid Addition To Disney Dining

by on October 27, 2016

Hot grab-and-go options are available, in addition to standard cold fare.Recently, Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Sanaa added a new breakfast service to supplement their already great lunch and dinner offerings. In a resort without a quick service immediately available for breakfast (at least without taking the shuttle to Jambo House to hit up The Mara), it seems like a smart move. Families in search of something more substantial to eat than what’s available in Johari Treasures’ refrigerated section can now wander just downstairs from their room to sample Sanaa’s options (both hot and cold, grab-and-go or not). It’s rare we see a new addition to resort dining that sticks around for very long, so I wanted to give this meal a shot in case it’s short-lived (though, based on how good it was, I hope it’s here to stay!).

Standard hand fruits and muffins/bagels/toast available for purchaseAll in all, Sanaa breakfast is a pretty simple set-up: once you arrive downstairs to the restaurant (anytime between 7am-10am daily), you’ll be greeted by a Cast Member with a menu of offerings, and led to the front dining room just to the right of the restaurant’s entrance. Here, all of the hot and cold grab and go options are available to peruse and purchase, along with bottled juices, milk, water, and sodas, plus disposable cups for coffee. Once you decide on your items, or choose from the menu, you just let the cashier know, where they’ll ring you up and give you a number to place on your table (painted on a cute wooden animal carving).

A variety of bottled drinks and cereals supplement your meal. When I arrived towards the end of breakfast hours one day recently, the grab and go area wasn’t super well-stocked – a few of the items had run out, but Cast Members refilling items let me know that I could just ask if I wanted anything that was missing. Notable options include a beautiful fresh fruit platter, muffins, hot oatmeal, and slices of bobotie pie (African-style quiche). One other note – I was a little sad that you couldn’t get a fountain drink or cup of water here, like you’d find standard at a normal quick service. Be prepared that if you want water, you’ll have to pay for one of the small bottles that comes with the kid’s meals. Coffee was the only self-serve drink available. I realize this is a result of a restaurant not necessarily equipped for this kind of service, but it was still a little bit of a surprise to me, and different from what you’ll see elsewhere.

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