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WDW Theme Parks Discuss Favorite Hidden Gems in the Vacation Planning forums; So, last August was my first time attending Magic Meets and on Sunday Mike Scopa had a discussion on Hidden Gems/Treasures in Disney World. I wrote a lot of them ...
  1. #1
    disneymaniac87's Avatar
    disneymaniac87 is offline Counting Down To My Next Trip!
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    Bel Air, Maryland

    Favorite Hidden Gems

    So, last August was my first time attending Magic Meets and on Sunday Mike Scopa had a discussion on Hidden Gems/Treasures in Disney World. I wrote a lot of them down, but now can't find the paper. (I guess this shows how organized I am!) Anyways, I was wondering if any of you attended that and know what Mike said his 4 favorites were. He gave one for each park, then a collection of others. I remember one from Magic Kingdom, The Kiss Goodnight, and that's about it.

    Also, I'd love to know what are some of your favorite hidden gems in Disney. I am taking a 'newbie' to Disney in June. This is only her second trip and her first time, she didn't really do it right! So I want her to experience Disney!
    My Disney Vacations
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  2. #2
    supernova's Avatar
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    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    I love relaxing at the Rose Garden. It's shaded, quiet, and you can get a great view of the castle. It's usually pretty empty, so it is a nice place to just sit, hear the music, and people-watch from a far.
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    Really Walt? Disneyland is MY land? Why would I want a silly little land when I can have the WORLD.

  3. #3
    GIOny's Avatar
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    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    I'm wondering if maybe the windows on Main St. in the MK was on the list, they are rich in history. But I really think that anything that you and the newbie find that is new/different for you, can be your hidden gem. Lou I'm sure has a podcast on it, look for that and his DSI series, that has alot of info on those shows. You could always write into WDW today (don't expect a quick response) or maybe call in during a live show and ask Mike himself.
    It's kind of fun to do the impossible!

  4. #4
    disneymaniac87's Avatar
    disneymaniac87 is offline Counting Down To My Next Trip!
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    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    I have tried writing into WDW today, but haven't gotten a response! I know they take FOREVER to respond to emails!

    I never thought about calling into a live show! Is there a live show between now and June 19th??
    My Disney Vacations
    '92, '93, '94, '96, '97, '99, '03, '05, '06, '09, '10, '11, '12(x2)

    "All you need is faith and trust..."

  5. #5
    WyckedPhoenix's Avatar
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    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    Hidden gems are some of my favorite things to read about. As a complete newbie to the parks please share some!! :0D
    *Jennifer Lynn*
    NDW #38
    Fist EVER WDW trip in October 2011!
    Things about me....

  6. #6
    WVParkfan's Avatar
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    Morgantown, WV

    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    A few years ago, someone took all of the "hidden secrets" from this board and put them into one list. The blog where she posted them has now expired, but I cut and pasted the list into a document. These aren't my contributions, but a list of contributions from everyone who posted here at that time. Here is what was compiled from everyone's contributions in 2005:

    - In Epcot near "The Land" is the exact center of all of Walt Disney World.

    -When you're in line for Indiana Jones at MGM you go past a well, I think to the right of the entrance. If you pull on the rope you'll hear someone down in the well.

    -Behind the castle is a fountain with Cinderella. If you bend down and look at the fountain the crown on the back wall appears to crown Cinderella.

    -In the pre-show Muppet 3D room at MGM there is a net full of green jello hanging from the ceiling. It signifies Annette Funicello.

    -When you go to board the doom buggies at the Haunted Mansion - notice the last bat head before you board has no features on it, it is smooth from all the hands rubbing over it through the years.

    -The claw marks on the floor of The Country Bear Jamboree.

    -If you're by the Haunted Mansion at night, look up at the top story right above the front door. If you watch it for a while you'll notice a light pass by it and some shadows, it looks like 2 people are walking by with a lantern.

    -Devine, a performer at Animal Kingdom on stilts completely covered in leaves so (s)he looks like a walking plant, is usually between Asia and Africa, sometimes near the main entrance at the Rainforest Cafe. I always like looking for Devine at AK. We have been lucky enough to see her twice and got some really good pictures of her. She doesn't like for you to be able to see her face.

    -Not a big secret ... but I like the walkway that goes from Mickey's Toontown [is that what it's still called] to Space Mountain. Follows the railroad track. One of the few quiet places in MK.

    -Not sure if it's a "secret" or not but one of my favorite lesser-known attractions is the Expo Hall of Main Street. There's a small theater that shows old Disney cartoons (like the old Main Street Cinema but in color and with seats!), a couple exhibits, some nice photo opportunities, and usually in the late morning I've seen a variety of Disney Princesses there (Aurora, Cinderella, Snow White, Mary Poppins). Definitely a fun hideaway.

    -The Lady and the Tramp paws in front Tony´s at Magic Kingdom

    -My Daughter & I found the talking water fountain in EPCOT (on the left side of the big fountain in FW as you are walking toward WS - right near Mousegear).

    -The motorized trashcans in TomorrowLand.

    -Some of the biggest points in the Buzz ride are found leaving the first room. Turn around and shoot the back of the Orange robots arm or the back of the buzz saw. 100,000 points. The car turns automatically away form these so turn back score big!

    -In the Great Movie Ride at MGM... In the Egyptian-styled section, check out some of the wall tiles as fast as you can while the ride moves through. Most of them are normal hieroglyphs, but several have pictures of funny MGM and Disney stuff. For example, one of the tiles has R2-D2 and another has C-3PO from Star Wars. There are a couple hidden mickeys in there too.

    -Look for the buried jewels around Aladdin's magic carpet ride at Magic Kingdom.

    -Look for the key under the doormat at Muppets 3D in MGM. Just after you go through the turnstile, go to your right and you'll find a welcome mat, take a peek underneath it.

    -I like the Hidden Mickey in Buzz Lightyear. In the very last room where you are still able to shoot, look forward at the top left corner, there's a planet with Mickey on it. This same planet is also on the map of planets in the waiting area just as you enter. The planet is blue, if that helps you any.

    -The 13 lanterns hanging in the Liberty Square Tree in Magic Kingdom representing the original 13 colonies. It's the big tree to the left when facing the Paddle Wheel Boat.

    -Check out the "Singing in the Rain" umbrella that is attached to one of the streetlights near the old Hunchback theater at MGM Studios. Grab the umbrella and step on the black square embedded in the cement underneath it for a nice surprise! ( I heard about this - haven't seen it for myself yet)

    -At the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids play area in MGM, climb the stairs between the garden hose and the slide coming out of a roll of film. There is a dog nose. Put your hand in the nostrils. The dog sniffs you!

    -I don't know if has already been mentioned, but for those that are interested in baseball, in Japan at Epcot, there is an nice exhibit of Japanese baseball memorabilia (sp?). It's like a mini hall of fame. Plus, it is air conditioned:

    - If you turn down the first side street to your right on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom on a more quiet day and look up at the windows that have signs that say something like "music lessons", you'll hear a voice practicing scales and someone tap dancing. You can't always hear it - it has to be pretty quiet.

    - Also, the hidden mickey in the mural on the Norway ride in Epcot is hilarious!

    -On Hollywood Blvd at MGM, read the names stenciled on the second floor windows. I recall seeing one that said 'Valiant Detective Agency' from 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit'.

    -I heard that at the Columbia Harbor House Fish Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom on the second floor, the dining there is usually never crowded and you can have a great view of fantasyland and one of the other lands.

    -There are 27 hidden Mickeys in the mural in the Animal Kingdom

    -Has anyone mentioned being a "guest conductor" on the train in the Magic Kingdom? If you sit in the very last car, the one that is the little platform out the back they will ask you to be the guest conductor. Last time all three of my kids fit back there while we were up a few rows. They get to yell "All Aboard" into the microphone and announce the different lands. It's a trivial thing but my kids had so much fun we ended up going the whole loop because they didn't want to stop.

    -In the Great Movie Ride at MGM, when you go into the Indiana Jones room, don't look at Indy. Keep looking at the wall to your left. Right before you leave the room, you'll see the Hidden Mickey and a Hidden Donald. They're in the last row of blocks before you exit that room, about halfway up the wall.
    -On Main Street at the Magic Kingdom, check out the old style phone in the General Store. (on the right side of the street as you're headed in) Pick up the receiver and listen in to a conversation going on.

    -At the Magic Kingdom on Cinderella's Carousel, there is one horse with a gold ribbon on its tail, that's supposed to be Cinderella's horse.

    -Another secret - the paintbrushes on Tom Sawyer Island in the Magic Kingdom. They are put out for the first few boat trips of the day and anyone who finds one gets a front-of-line pass for either Splash Mountain or Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.

    --While waiting in line at Star Tours at MGM, listen for an announcement for George Sacul to respond. Sacul is Lucas spelled backwards. George Lucas is the creator and Producer of the Star Wars movies.

    -There is only one place in MK that you can see a picture of Cinderella running with her prince to their carriage after just being married. It is on the Golden Carousel.

    - If you want to ride in the front of the Monorail, just ask the guard (is that the right word?) on the platform and if no one else is already in there or has already asked, you can go in the front for your journey! We LOVE doing this - it's especially fun at night because you can see everything lit up!

    -I haven't seen this one posted, but it was fun for my kids to discover the little mice up in the rafters of the lobby of the castle.

    -One of my family's favorite things to do is in Italy at the WS. If you wander around behind the shops (where the fountains are) look around for little red press-buttons that say "press for a surprise" (or something to that affect). If you press the button, water squirts from a different location- its always fun to see where the water comes from when you do it and then wait for an unsuspecting person to walk by... they can't ever figure it out

    -On the Buzz Lightyear ride at the Magic Kingdom, if you hit the backside of the orange robot's arm, you can score 100,000 pts per hit. You have to turn your car around to do it, but I managed it last time we went.

    -A tip: If you plan to see Fantasmic!, request the Fantasmic! dinner package when you make a PS (now "Advanced Reservation") for a restaurant at MGM. The "package" includes a fixed price meal at a participating MGM restaurant (the meal includes 2 starters, an entree, and dessert) and a voucher for reserved seating at Fantasmic! This way, you can go to the show only a half hour before showtime, rather than waste valuable touring time waiting in line hoping to get a seat. There's a special entrance for folks who get the voucher, and you just hand it over to the CM at the entrance. The fixed price meal for 2 adults ended up being about $80 (w/ tax and tip), but it was well worth it!

    -At Cinderella's Royal Table restaurant when you're waiting to be called, stand in front of the throne and look up to the right and you will see Gus and Jacques.

    -Astro Orbiter is a little over twice the speed of Dumbo or Aladdin's Carpets, six seconds per revolution as opposed to thirteen. If you fly the rocket higher you will not feel as much a sensation of wanting to fall out.

    -At Epcot, Children can sometimes meet Aladdin in or near the back room at Morocco. Morocco offers a guided tour as well. There is a letter signed by George Washington displayed in the restaurant.

    -The bridge continuing on past France symbolically crosses the English Channel. See if you can find a bike and an easel as if an artist were coming back to finish a painting of the store across the canal. (Location may change periodically, 8/04 was down on the non-public walkway at water's edge.) This is also the location of the rear entrance (International Gateway) from some of the resorts to Epcot.

    -In Epcot, did anyone know that there was a walking trail in Canada, with an old abandoned mine and waterfalls?

    -At Animal Kingdom, on the bridge to Camp Minnie-Mickey you can see the fire breathing dragon's breath (you have to be patient) it is off to the right as you enter and on the left hand bank of the river.
    April, 1998 Coronado Springs
    April, 2001 Coronado Springs
    January, 2004 All-Star Sports
    July, 2005 Caribbean Beach Resort
    April, 2006 Pop Century
    December, 2006 All-Star Sports
    March, 2008 All-Star Movies
    April, 2009 All-Star Music
    August, 2010 Disney's Swan Resort

  7. #7
    williams is offline C-Ticket Holder
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    Nov 2009

    Re: Favorite Hidden Gems

    I have found one of my favorite hidden gems is “Epcot’s Club Cool”. I really love it! It’s located in the main point of the whole park. It is truly an outstanding place in Epcot where I always enjoy and we will be there soon.

    Best Regards,

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