Another ADR Day!

Yesterday marked what is possibly the biggest day in any WDW trip countdown: 180 days!

That of course meant that all my planning and decision making for dining on our trip was about to come down to a crucial hour of frantic tapping and clicking at my laptop in the hopes of securing those all too important reservations. I was really happy that Matthew got to be involved in the planning side, but as he was working, the booking was all down to me!

Well what did I get?

  • Be Our Guest breakfast (QS) and The Plaza Restautant – I had hoped to get Crystal Palace on the first day but it had already booked up at the time I wanted, so instead I swapped for Be Our Guest which we were planning on doing later in the trip. I always start my first day in Disney with a breakfast reservation before park opening so I can get those empty Main Street photos! Then as we weren’t going to be using a TS credit, I decided to book The Plaza for 3pm – its a Halloween party night so nowhere books very late, and we are hoping to do the party that night so we’ll be busy in the evening getting spooky!
  • Rainforest Cafe at Animal Kingdom – this is one of Matthew’s very few requests, but its a bit of a tradition for him and who doesn’t love RFC?
  • Bon Voyage breakfast at Trattoria Al Forno – YESSSSS! The newest and most exciting character breakfast booking is mine! Tangled themed, and at my favourite Disney location, The Boardwalk, this was my top priority booking!
  • Sci-Fi Dine In Theater – another one that Matthew really wanted, and although I’ve eaten here before I’m excited to be going back!
  • T-REX – another classic, and a restaurant that Matthew’s never been to so I’m really excited for him to experience the dinosaurs!
  • Yak and Yeti – I had such a great meal here back in February and there were so many things on the menu that I wanted to try so it was a no-brainer really..
  • Teppan Edo – this will be my third consecutive time eating here on a WDW trip and I have no shame because I absolutely love everything about it. Also Matthew and I are hoping to maybe do Japan next year so it’ll be a fun experience for both of us.

We’ve still got a few more bookings to do for the last couple of days of our trip, but we’ll be hoping to snag Skipper Canteen, Chef Mickey’s and Crystal Palace or Cinderella’s Royal Table! As we’re doing a few offsite days we’ll have a few spare credits to play with too..

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Minnie’s Beach Bash Breakfast at Cape May Cafe


Something I love doing when planning Disney trips is finding new and different restaurants, especially those that don’t seem to be on the radar of most people, and when they’re little-known character meals, its even better!

Disney’s Beach Club Resort is my dream WDW resort, and when I discovered that they have their own character breakfast, hosted by Minnie Mouse, I knew it was somewhere to visit on my trip with Sarah. Cape May Cafe is located on the ground floor of Beach Club, and the restaurant fits in with the theme of the hotel perfectly, from the beach hut style canopies and cute seaside artwork.



The food is a classic Disney buffet breakfast, with hot options like sausages, bacon and eggs, assorted pastries and fruit options, cereals, yogurts and sweet goodies like Mickey waffles and pancakes. We planned our breakfast for the morning after I ran the Princess 10K, so I filled several plates – in the interest of re-fuelling, of course! I love making a buffet breakfast feel like multi-course meal, starting with savoury goodness and finishing with a dessert style final plate!


As the name suggests, of course Minnie makes the rounds to the tables, and she’s also joined by Donald and Goofy. They’re all set for a day at the seaside in the cutest beach outfits, and throughout the meal they stop for a little surfer dance number in the middle of the restaurant. All three of them spent a good amount of time at each table, and we had a great interaction with everyone.


If you’re looking for a character breakfast that’s a little different to the others available, I definitely recommend this, plus it means getting to spend a morning in the Boardwalk area, which is one of my favourite places in WDW! Because you can’t use the International Gateway at Epcot until the World Showcase opens at 11am, if you’re staying onsite you’re better off getting a bus to Hollywood Studios and then hopping on a boat to the resort, or going to Epcot and transferring to a Beach Club bus.

See you at the seaside!

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Walt Disney World Must Dos for Donald Lovers

If, like me, you hold a huge soft spot for a certain sassy duck, then there are a number of things that you should be adding to your next WDW trip to-do list, and here they are!

1. Meet the Astounding Donaldo at Pete’s Silly Sideshow

He really is magic!

2. Ride the Gran Fiesta Tour

Its basically a Donald theme Its a Small World

3. Then hang out with Donald in the Mexico Pavilion

Donald + poncho = my fave

4. Lunch at Tusker House Restaurant

Tusker is the best meal I’ve had in Animal Kingdom, and an adorable duck host makes it even better

5. Royal Friendship Faire

This is a double bonus if you’re a Tangled fan, because Donald, ruffians and thugs are one hell of a combo

6. Mickey’s Philharmagic

The mouse’s name might be in the title, but we all know who the real star of this is..

7. Meet the Jurassic classic

Head over to Dinoland USA in Animal Kingdom to meet Donald in all his adventurer gear

8. Breakfast at Cape May Cafe

Not only is this a delicious buffet breakfast in one of my all-time favourite Disney resorts, but it also features a duck who’s ready to hit the beach!

I love this duck!

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Mickey’s Backyard BBQ

Just to warn you, I’m about to start gushing because this was easily the best night of our trip.

I’d actually never heard of Mickey’s Backyard before, until one day while trying to decide on our ADRs for Feb, I was scrolling through the dining page of the WDW website, and suddenly it caught my eye. Sarah is a huge country music fan, and the thought of buffet food and dancing with Mickey and the gang had me hooked on the idea of it. Needless to say, it wasn’t a hard sell.

We got the bus from Magic Kingdom to Fort Wilderness and walked round to the Fort Wilderness Pavilion, taking in all the beauty of the campground. We had Category 1 seating, so after we checked in we were taken straight to our reserved spot on the communal bench tables, where we could leave our stuff and head up to meet Mickey and Minnie, and Chip, Dale and Goofy without any queues as it was before Category 2 were let into the pavilion.

We could go straight up to the buffet, where there was a spread of classic bbq food – burgers, hot dogs, ribs, pulled pork, chicken etc, as well as salads, corn bread, macaroni cheese, buns, and we filled our plates with as much as we good, and then grabbed drinks and got back to our table before the crowd of other guests descended, and it wasn’t long before the show kicked off.

The show was lead by Cyclone Sally and Tumbleweed Will who introduced the band and the characters and kicked off the singing and dancing. The evening was filled the music, and once we’d filled our stomachs with the INCREDIBLE food – at least two plates worth – we headed up to dance with the characters. It may have been a little hard to get to some of the characters with all those pesky kids in the way, but we still had the most fun!

At times, the music and dancing was paused and the floor cleared for a trick roper who performed incredible lasso tricks and displays, and also intervals to give the characters (and us!) a break from dancing in the heat – its a great job the pavilion is open air, because it gets quite warm on the dancefloor! In some of these breaks, Mickey and Minnie met by the entrance to the pavilion, and Chip, Dale and Goofy had a spot in the corner to meet, but the queues were always pretty long which is why we were lucky to get in early!

Dessert came in the form of chest freezers filled with premium Mickey bars, and there was also an open bar serving wine and beer for 21+ guests. The whole show lasted about 1.5-2 hours – probably the right length for some of the little kids as it meant everything was wrapped up by 8pm – and the music varied from country classics to Disney favourites, and Chip doing a full dance routine to Let It Go was possibly the highlight of the night for me. There were also group dances – the Cotton Eyed Joe, the macarena etc – and dances performed by the characters. I probably keep saying it, but it was all just so much fun!


The show used two of our Table Service credits, but it was 100% worth it, especially when the bill showed that it should have cost the two of us $144 in total if we’d paid out of pocket. I’d recommend it over any other dinner show and would easily do it again and again!

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Breakfast at Cinderella’s Royal Table

If you’re looking for somewhere totally magical to eat in the Magic Kingdom, does it really get any better than eating in Cinderella Castle itself? No. The answer is no.

Cinderella’s Royal Table is one of the few restaurants in MK that offers reservations prior to park opening, meaning early access to Main Street USA before the crowds descend, and for me that’s always worth the stress of those 180 day advanced dining reservations! Its a bit of a first-day tradition for me, and both Sarah and I were dying to eat breakfast with the princesses.

With the new welcome show, you’re not able to walk through the castle from Main Street, so its a little detour past Sleepy Hollow and round to the back of the castle from there. Once you’ve checked in for your meal, you enter the castle to be greeted by Cinderella herself in a grand entrance hall – psst, look out for Gus Gus and Jaq! Once you’ve had your photo and your party has been announced, you climb a spiral staircase up into the dining room and are escorted to your table.

I really loved the size of the dining room. I expected it to be much bigger, but its a perfect size to not feel enormous, but also not crowded, and it means that you’re never too far from the gorgeous stained glass window that looks out over Fantasyland. We were brought out a plate of beautiful pastries while we decided on what to choose from the menu, and the juice was constantly flowing so our glasses were never empty.

Over the course of the first 10-15 minutes of our meal, each princess was announced as they entered the restaurant, and we seemed to have a prime seat as we were the first table visited by almost every princess. We met Aurora, Snow White, Ariel and Jasmine, all of whom were so lovely and friendly, and didn’t rush our interactions at all. At points throughout the meal, there was also a wishing ceremony, for which we were each given a plastic wand to wave – I don’t know if they normally give wands to adults but our server David brought us one each anyway!

As well as the pastries, we each ordered the traditional breakfast, which was delicious but after a Mickey shaped blueberry muffin, I struggled to finish the whole plate. Being on the Disney Dining Plan, the meal was 2 table service credits, which was totally worth it for the food, the characters and the experience of dining in the castle – plus our wands of course! The cast members were also so sweet, which for me always makes any meal feel even better, and it was the perfect start to our trip.

We also just had to stop to use the restrooms on the way out just so we could say we’ve been to the loo in the castle, ha!

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51 Characters in 10 Days

I may be back from Walt Disney World, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to stop talking about it. EVER.

You have been warned.

Among many of the proud accomplishments of the trip, Sarah and I managed to visit 51 different characters over 78 interactions within 10 days of being in the parks, and I thought it would be fun to share who we met and where!


The Classics:

  • Mickey Mouse x 5 – Mickey’s Backyard BBQ, Epcot Character Spot, Commissary Lane – Hollywood Studios, Adventurers Outpost – Animal Kingdom, Town Square Theater – Magic Kingdom
  • Minnie Mouse x 5 – Epcot Character Spot, Mickey’s Backyard BBQ, Commissary Lane – Hollywood Studios, Adventurers Outpost – Animal Kingdom, Cape May Cafe
  • Donald Duck x 4 – Mexico Pavilion – Epcot, Cape May Cafe, Dinoland USA – Animal Kingdom, Character Palooza
  • Daisy Duck – Future World – Epcot
  • Pluto x 2 – Disney Junior – Hollywood Studios, Dinoland USA – Animal Kingdom
  • Goofy x 4  – Epcot Character Spot, Mickey’s Backyard BBQ, Cape May Cafe, Dinoland USA – Animal Kingdom
  • Chip and Dale x 2 – Frontierland – Magic Kingdom, Mickey’s Backyard BBQ


Princesses:

  • Cinderella – Cinderella’s Royal Table
  • Aurora x 2 – Cinderella’s Royal Table, France Pavilion – Epcot
  • Ariel x 2 – Cinderella’s Royal Table (human legs), Ariel’s Grotto – Magic Kingdom (mermaid)
  • Snow White x 2 – Cinderella’s Royal Table, Epcot
  • Jasmine x 2 – Cinderella’s Royal Table, Adventureland – Magic Kingdom
  • Rapunzel – Princess Fairytale Hall
  • Tiana x 2 – Princess Fairytale Hall, Character Palooza
  • Elsa – Royal Sommerhus – Epcot
  • Anna – Royal Sommerhus – Epcot
  • Mulan – China Pavilion – Epcot
  • Belle x 2 – France Pavilion – Epcot (blue dress), Enchanted Tales with Belle (yellow dress)
  • Pocahontas x 3 – Animal Kingdom, Character Palooza x2
  • Moana – Hollywood Studios
  • Merida – Magic Kingdom


Fur:

  • Winnie the Pooh – Magic Kingdom
  • Tigger – Magic Kingdom
  • Horace – Frontierland Hoedown Happening – Magic Kingdom
  • Baloo – Animal Kingdom
  • King Louie – Animal Kingdom
  • Robin Hood – Character Palooza
  • Bolt – Hollywood Studios
  • Stitch – Magic Kingdom
  • Meeko – Character Palooza
  • Rafiki x 2 – Rafiki’s Planet Watch – Animal Kingdom, Character Palooza
  • Flik – Animal Kingdom
  • Beast – Be Our Guest


Face:

  • Mary Poppins – Magic Kingdom
  • Bert – Character Palooza
  • Alice – UK Pavilion – Epcot
  • Fairy Godmother – Magic Kingdom
  • Aladdin – Adventureland – Magic Kingdom, Character Palooza (as Prince Ali)
  • Tarzan – Animal Kingdom
  • Peter Pan – Magic Kingdom
  • Evil Queen – Character Palooza
  • Tinkerbell –  Town Square Theater – Magic Kingdom


Other friends:

  • Smee – Character Palooza
  • Jawas – Star Wars Launch Bay
  • Chewbacca – Star Wars Launch Bay
  • Pinocchio – Character Palooza
  • Russel – Animal Kingdom
  • Sadness – Epcot Character Spot
  • Joy – Epcot Character Spot
  • Baymax x 2 – Epcot Character Spot

And d’you know what? There are so many more that we didn’t see, so get spotting!

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February Disney Trip Day 11

There is actually nothing more beautiful than looking out of your bedroom window and seeing the Grand Floridian and Magic Kingdom just across the water. Honestly, our stay in the Polynesian was perfect. We sat in our room and ate peanut butter Rice Krispie treats for breakfast and could have stayed there forever.

But it was extra magic hours in MK, so we slightly begrudgingly checked out, and got the monorail over to the park. Despite missing most of the hour, we did get to see the new welcome show on the castle stage, which was very sweet, them casually strolled through the castle and into Fantasyland where we kicked off the day with a ride on the carousel – something we’d not done yet this trip. After our ride, we headed over to the Tangled toilets to shoot some photos of my outfit – The Happiest Fitness Co’s new collection – then back round Fantasyland to the Under the Sea Little Mermaid ride, which was a walk on.

Park still fairly quiet, we headed into Storybook Circus and rode The Barnstormer, then made our way round to Tomorrowland for a Space Mountain fastpass. Again, they tried to put us into the Alpha line, but I asked if we could do Omega and the cast member let us so we were happy! Then is it really a trip if you haven’t been on the TTA People Mover?! This ride has been crazy busy for our whole time here, and because I firmly believe that it should always be a walk-on, this morning made the perfect first and last ride of the trip.


As we made our way back through Fantasyland, we once again came across the Tremaine sisters, but same as yesterday, were told as we got in line that they would be finishing soon and replaced by the Fairy Godmother, who we’d already met, so our plan was foiled again! Instead, we walked into Liberty Square and grabbed some snacks at Liberty Square Market, before going on a final character meet – the boss himself, talking Mickey Mouse. Lucky we had fastpasses, cos the queue was over an hour! He told us we were the most beautiful princesses he’d seen all day, and lots of cuddles were had as we faced the reality of leaving soon.

To enjoy our remaining hour, we watched the Dapper Dans on Main Street, then spent some time on the Hub grass and even did a little bit of Move It, Shake It before we said ‘see ya real soon!’ to the kingdom. Our simple monorail trip back to the resort turned into a little bit of a disaster, courtesy of the monorail ahead of us having some technical problems, and as a result we missed our Magical Express to the airport, but after discovering that the next bus was fully booked, the hotel staff were kind enough to provide a taxi to the airport on them to ensure we didn’t have any more problems.

This, my friends, is where this story comes to a close, and I’ll be back in the UK by the time this post goes live. It really has been the most magical of trips, and while I can’t thank you lovely bunch enough for all your lovely words, the star of this show in my eyes is the beautiful Sarah, my Disney soul mate who I’ve just had the most fun with. This trip would have been nothing without here, and I’m so grateful to have her in my life ❤

Signing off guys, see ya real soon!

PS. I’m not really signing off, usual blog content will resume shortly!