Friday, October 14, 2016

Disney 2016: Day Five

Our last day at Disney proved to be interesting thanks to the incoming hurricane that would cut down the most magical place on earth.  Wanting to pack everything possible into our final day, we woke up bright and early to head to Magic Kingdom.  

Ellie really lucked up this trip with getting to meet so many princesses.  After cramming as much as possible into the first two hours of the day, Ellie and I used our Fast Pass options to meet the princesses while Eric and Eli went to Space Mountain.

You just have to love the detailing of Disney.  Right down to the Fairytale storybook.

This trip was full of really special memories for me, like the moment Cinderella told Ellie that they shared a name since the mice call her Cinder-Ellie.  Bless it, my press pot was proud of that!

Again,  I don't remember every detail of the day in order, but certain moments really stand out to me. For example, we Fast Passed Splash mountain and while the boys were using their tickets, phones all over the place started going crazy with a hurricane warning advising everyone to vacate the area within 24 hours.  We were scheduled to leave early the next morning, so we just made the most of it.

At some point we ate lunch at Peso Bills in Frontier Land.  I remember is being one of my favorites at a previous visit, but I can't say that I felt the same way this go-around.  Ha!

Before heading back to the room for a rest, we hit up the Tiki Room.  It's not the most exhilarating ride, but as I always point out, it's a classic.  Plus, having a cool/dark place to rest is always nice!!

We toured Tomorrowland on our way out and hit up the People Mover for the first time.  Again, another fantastic option if you want a place to cool off and escape the crowd.  The same goes for Carousel of Progress if you cam stand the song that long. 

No sooner had we made our way from Magic Kingdom to our hotel did a torrential downpour start.  The bus fell asleep, but Ellie was still high on the whole princess experience.  She and I walked a million miles around the awning of our hotel building.  When the rain finally started to taper off, she and I hit up the food court, hotel lobby where they were offering free crafts and games, and then we strolled through the gift shop.

When we finally headed back to Magic Kingdom with the sleepy heads, we hit up Pirates of the Caribbean and Haunted Mansion before we went to our all-time favorite quick service restaurant, Columbia Harbor House.  

Again, that was another special memory for me because we ate upstairs and watched out the window as all the families started staking out their spots for the night parade.  We were just soaking in the final hours of our trip together, and it was so special.  

We opted out of the first parade to ride a few more things, and we watched the fireworks from the backside of the castle, which I would not recommend.  We made our way to the front of the castle for the castle projection show and the second light parade. 

Even though we know the parade by heart, we knew that it would be the last time we'd ever get to see because Disney had announced plans to cancel it.  So, we wanted to give the kids a chance to experience it one final time. 

We actually ended up seeing one of the final evening parades ever because it was scheduled to end two days after our departure, and the hurricane rained out one of those days.  How cool is that?  We will miss this spectacular event, but I can't wait to see what it's replaced with!

Our favorite thing at Disney is taking advantage of the Extra Magic Hours at night when the park closes.  To clarify, if you are staying on property, this is a perk for you.  However, because it's impossible to have people leave and reenter, Disney has come up with a fantastic compromise.  Park guests not staying on property at a resort, are allowed to enjoy the park.  However, all magic bands are scanned at each attraction.  This allows resort guests to continue riding without the long lines.  

We cram more into the last two Extra Magic Hours of the day than we do any other time.  For example, the princess meet and greet is usually an hour wait time unless you have a  fast pass.  At night, you walk right up!! 

The streets start to clear out and you just have a magical experience without the heat, the crowds, and the hustle of it all.  If your kids can hang late, this is an incredible option for you!!

We hit up as many rides as possible and shut the park down.  We were literally there until the stroke of midnight.

Nothing is so bittersweet as leaving Disney with the farewell song playing.  You have precious memories to take with you, but you're not quite ready to leave. 

Our final ride of the trip was It's A Small World, and I snapped the picture of an exhausted, but happy little boy as we rounded out our trip!

Worry not, we have already booked our next stay and w're counting down the days1

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