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Trip Reports & Member Reviews Discuss Veri's long delayed May Trip Report in the Vacation Planning forums; Day 1, 02MAY11 (Monday). Up early and to the Syracuse airport for the JetBlue flight to Orlando. Roll into Orlando around about 10AM and Magical express whisks us to Saratoga ...
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    Veritas's Avatar
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    Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Day 1, 02MAY11 (Monday). Up early and to the Syracuse airport for the JetBlue flight to Orlando. Roll into Orlando around about 10AM and Magical express whisks us to Saratoga Springs. A quick check-in and we wander over to Down Town Disney for lunch at T-Rex. The better half had mahi-mahi, and I had a chicken sandwich. Key Lime Pie and Ice cream for dessert. Additional adult beverages were enjoyed. A good start to a vacation J
    From there we headed off to MK and per custom, started the experience with a visit to the Haunted Mansion. The new queue is a lot of fun. Made the usual rounds, grabbed some great character pictures and headed off to Wilderness Lodge for dinner at Artist Point. Both of us had the buffalo, which is quite delicious, very glad they brought it back as a signature item. I had the cheese sampler and the Better Half had raspberry mousse. A few more adult beverages were enjoyed and it was time to head back to the room for some sleep.
    Day 2, 03MAY11 (Tuesday). Slept in and wandered over to MK to continue the rounds. Did manage to catch a few glimpses of the construction. The Fantasyland Expansion is something I’m looking forward to seeing. Had lunch at Crystal palace, typical Disney Buffet, we were there for the characters like everyone else. Wandered back to Saratoga doe a nap and then off to EPCOT. Very very long wait times for Soarin and Test Track as always, but enjoyed wandering around for the flower and garden festival. Strolled through the world showcase and settled in for dinner at Bistro de Paris. It was our first visit to Bistro and enjoyed it greatly. Both of use had the venison medallions for dinner, which were quite good. The Better Half had sorbet for dessert and I had the cheese sampler (when in France, eat cheese). I really recommend this place if you are looking for quiet or special occasion dinner. From there feeling very full and sleepy it was time to head back to resort and grab some sleep.
    Day 3, 04MAY11 (Wednesday). Off to Discovery Cove. Absolutely great experience. Beautiful park, plenty to do. The breakfast and lunch were standard buffet food, nothing to complain about but nothing to rave about either. We didn’t do the dolphin encounter, just wanted to laze around, splash in the water and otherwise be indolent. The lazy river is a nice relaxing experience, enjoyed the reef snorkeling, After getting our fill of complete laziness we took advantage of the free admission to SeaWorld. Again a great park, very clean and every bit as nice as a Disney Park. The new killer whale show was very entertaining; note: since the accident with the trainer a while back none of the trainers enter the water with the whales any more. We did have a few “wait a minute” moments. The helicopter simulator ride was clearly inspired by Star Tours, and there was a portion of the Journey to Atlantis flume ride that reminded us quite a bit of some Disney theming. We had a good laugh from it all. For dinner we ate at Sharks Underwater Grill. Quite good and I think the food might actually be better than the Coral Reef at EPCOT. The Better Half had some kind of fish, and I had the Mojo Pork Loin. Again a few adult beverages were involved. From there we headed back to The World and we spent a little time at EPCOT, caught Fast Passes for Test Track and then called it a night.
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    so far so good.. i like sea world.. but the whales make me so sad.. i was there the week before the accident and it took the show 30 mins to get going because the whales were acting odd and not working with the trainers.. and we walked around after and look at their Shamu.. and he was so sad circling the lil bitty tank around and around.. i cried and the hubby had to walk me away because i felt so bad for the guy
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Day 4, 05MAY11 (Thursday). Animal Kingdom day. We wandered in to get an early seat for the Kilimanjaro Safari. The animals were pretty active so we saw a few more beasties than usual. Wandered over to Dinosaur and then made our way to Camp Minnie Mickey for some character photos. (an aside: time to put some money into this park, some attraction are getting pretty ragged, please please please fix the yeti.). Talked to a CM about Australia expansion rumors, got a typical “Disney always has something planned” response. Did get a glimpse of folks on the new safari experience, looks like a good time, might try it next time we go. Went to the Yak and Yeti for lunch. We both had honey chicken and mango pie for desert. Did I mention adult beverages (a drink with lunch and dinner was definitely a theme this year)? Really enjoy Yak and yeti very much, the food is good and the theming quite excellent. That type of experience is what will eventually turn DAK into a full day park. We wandered back to resort for some pool time and then wandered over to DHS. Managed two walk on for Tower of Terror, amazing how light the crowds were on that end while Toy Story Mania was completely packed. Had hoped to grab a soft opening for Star Tours but no luck. (Another aside: Time to do something with the back-lot tour. We walked by and noticed almost no lines. I was surprised it was even still running). Did a run on the Great Movie Ride. There is always talk about updating it, but I rather like it the way it is. Had one really fun moment when we were wandering over by the Indiana Jones Stunt Show. Some folks were gathered by the well, so I wandered over and pulled the rope going into the well and of course the sound track started. The folks weren’t aware of that feature so they got a laugh out of it. Calling a day for DHS we again went back to the resort took nap and hit our ADR for Yachtsman Steakhouse at Yacht and Beach Club. A very good spot. It was our first visit and we were very pleased. The Better Half had a Porthouse and I had a rib eye, some chocolate cake and crème-brule for desert . We then took a stroll around the board walk, played lob-a- lobster and called it a night.

    Day 5, 06MAY11 (Friday). Friday rolled around and we went to breakfast at Kouzzina at Boardwalk, We both went for the sweet potato hash. We’d always enjoyed Spoodles and think the transition to Kouzzina was seamless. After a hearty breakfast we made our way to DHS again, and made the call to wait in line vs wait in an even longer line for Mid Way mania. All in all the 50minute wait felt shorter. It was the longest wait we had. I truly enjoy Midway Manai, it is very telling that the lines are always longer for Mania than for Tower of Terror or Rockin Rollercoaster. After mania we wandered over to Tower of Terror for re-dos and then walked to Beach and Yacht for lunch at Beaches and Cream. As always we had burgers and shared a No Way Jose. Of course while there a family decided they needed to have a Kitchen Sink. Bells, whistles and a whole can of whipped cream. After a filling lunch and a nap back at the resort, we headed over to MK for the usual rounds, more HM, Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road Splash Mountain and the Jungle Cruise. We had a walk on for Pirates by taking advantage of the Pirates show and wandering in while everyone was distracted by Cap’n jack and crew. Then it was time for the monorail ride to EPCOT. I relay love taking the monorail to EPCOT. SO we Fast passed test track, took a spin on maelstrom and bought the Mickey Gnomes and Pink Flamingos with Mickey ears being sold during the Garden festival and then settled in for Dinner at 9 Dragons. We both had the honey sesame chicken, with ginger cake and ice-cream for desert.
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Giggle. You guys sound like my DH & me....an adult beverage and repeat.

    Love your choices of ADR's. Did the venison taste gamey, or was it just tasty?
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    Veritas's Avatar
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Quote Originally Posted by HauntedGabe View Post
    Giggle. You guys sound like my DH & me....an adult beverage and repeat.

    Love your choices of ADR's. Did the venison taste gamey, or was it just tasty?
    Oh yes and adult beverage and repeat is exactly what is called for on a restful vacation

    The venison was very tender and tasty, not gamey at all.
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Day 6, 07MAY11 (Saturday). We really took it easy on Saturday, Slept in, grabbed a light breakfast and the Artists palette and then wandered over the DHS. Didn’t even think about Midway Mania and took a run on the Tower of Terror. Did manage to get a new photo with a Green Army Man though. Walked to Boardwalk and took a bus to magic Kingdom, with a spur of the moment lunch at Tony’s Town Square We both had a flat bread, with the Better Half enjoying lemon cake and I snarfing gown an ice-cream bomb for dessert. After the usual re-dos of Haunted Mansion, BTMRR. POC and Jungle Cruise we decided to take a run on Tomorrowland speedway and Buzz Light year just for the fun of it. We headed back to the resort, had some more pool time and grabbed dinner at the Turf Club at the resort. Kim had the chicken pasta and I had the “hunk of meat” (AKA strip steak). Cheese cake and crème brule followed for dessert.

    Day 7, 08MAY11 (Sunday). A day of complete leisure. We headed over to Down Town Disney to finish up shopping, grabbed lunch at T-Rex again and then spent some quality time at EPCOT. More maelstrom, some Space Ship Earth and Mouse Gear finished off the day. We had an impromptu walk in dinner at Italy and called it night. On another note this is the first trip we didn’t take a spin on Soarin. The lines were always about 50 minutes and Fast pass was always hours later. This was our first trip in May and while the crowds were not bad they were definitely more than we are used to compared to September and January.

    Day 8, 09MAY11 (Monday). We had an afternoon flight so we decided to it would be a last day at Magic Kingdom. Checked out handed in our bags and went to MK. We traditionally catch early flights out because it can be a bummer to stick around knowing you’re leaving but we found the later afternoon flights let you spend the morning somewhere and grab lunch before heading home. Anyway we revisited the favorites bought a few impulse items and headed back to the resort to grab a light lunch (sandwh9ches at Artists Palette ) and wait for the magical Express to take us back to the airport. One thing we had not anticipated was the very very long lines at the TSA security stations. The travel rush on Monday afternoon is pretty heavy. The good news is that it was pretty smooth.

    Overall this was one of our more sedate trips, a few special experiences like Discovery Cove and trying a few new restaurants was the focus. It’s nice to have enough visits to WDW (this was our 17th visit to WDW and we’ve had one visit to DLR) that we don’t feel like we must do everything. It takes a lot of the stress out of a visit and lets us concentrate on trying different things. Without worrying that missed something such as Soarin in this instance.

    This was the first time we’ve been at WDW in may and been to the Flower and Garden festival. It was quite nice.

    It does seem that WDW is working to vary the menu a little bit again, which seems to be a reversal of the last several years. It also seemed that with the exception of DAK, they’ve been working a little harder to spruce up the parks. It might be my imagination but DAK just seemed a bit ragged as I noted before. There seemed to be more characters out. While the CMs were all up to the usual standards, this is the first time
    I can say I couldn’t single any out for being exceptional. The bar was high and they all met it, no one stands out in my mind from this trip.

    A few parting thoughts:
    Please fix the yeti. Frankly without the yeti it a rollercoaster with a backwards section. I know it would shut down the big draw for a year but at this point it embarrassing.
    Chester & Hester’s Dinoland still has the old ring the bell with the hammer game, even though it hasn’t been in use since 2003. Lose it. It wouldn’t take but a few hours to remove the bellpole. The prize cabinet certainly could be re-purposed as a pin station or face painting station something anything just don’t have a “decaying” attraction sitting around.
    Downtown Disney. Hyperion Warf seems to have stalled. T-Rex was a nice addition (though it really is Rain Forest {same company} with different theming and different names for the same dishes).
    The new queue at HM is a lot o fun.
    Liberty Square is an under rated gem (HM, Liberty Belle, Hall of Presidents)
    Sea World will never directly compete with Disney as a primary draw but it certainly will lure people off property for a day or two. The “boutique experience” of Discovery Cove is something that Disney seems to be responding to with the special experiences such as the safari adventure, special tours and the like.
    Still enjoying Disney as much or more than the first time we went.
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    I love that you took another picture with the Green Army Dude!

    I look forward to trips like this with DH as the kids are inching closer to possibly being independent adults. Sounds like a great time.
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Partner... It looks like you had a great relaxing fun trip. I am glad you and the better half had fun. So you mean to tell me you don't believe the Yeti looks real? lol

    I can not wait to take my son when he gets older and can enjoy it!
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    Re: Veri's long delayed May Trip Report

    Sounds like a great trip Veri

    Thanks for sharing that trip, Veri.
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