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Disney in July – Part Two

First of all, I want to apologize for the delay between Part One and Part Two.  As many of my frequent readers know, the update for Disney Magic Kingdoms has taken up a large portion of my blogging time for the past week.  Yet, now that we’re caught up on that front, it’s time to finish up our tale of checking out all the new and exciting stuff at Disney World in the month of July.  If you didn’t read the first part, in which we adventured to the Magic Kingdom and ended our day in Animal Kingdom, you can check it out HERE! Good?  You’re all caught up?  Let’s press onwards.  We started our day by waking up early and heading to Epcot.

Frozen Ever After

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We felt really good about our odds of getting on this ride.  After all, we’d gotten to Epcot long before they opened.  We were at the front of the line.  As the park opened, we headed up to the left side of the World Showcase where the crowd had gathered.  At 9AM, a cast member leads the group, peacefully, through Mexico and over to Norway to stand in line and await the opening of the ride.  We were right up near the front.  In fact, the photo above was taken from our place in line.  But then, things got a bit troublesome.

As 9AM came and went, we were informed that Frozen Ever After was experiencing a late opening.  It seems that the ride, because it is so new, has been experiencing several issues that require it to shut down for long stretches of time.  Knowing that some folks had waited upwards of five hours, we decided to stick it out.  After all, this was one of the new and exciting things we wanted to see.

In the meantime, we made friends with a lizard who showed us his mating dance.  We did not show him ours as there were small children nearby.

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Nearly two hours after getting into the line, the ride finally opened and we were able to basically walk right in and board a boat bound for Arendelle.

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The ride itself features music from the film and some of the most impressive animatronics in any of the four parks.  Sven the reindeer looks alive.  At one point, your boat stops to watch Elsa sing and then is sent backwards by her magic.  The whole things culminates with the ice golem sending you down a small drop, which is a nice little thrill.

Overall, the ride is excellent.  In fact, my only complaint is that it is much too short.  Coming in under five minutes, I just wish there was a little more.  It’s over just as you feel you’re really getting into the groove of it.  The unfortunate thing is that many folks will wait for hours on end for such a short ride.  Given that our wait was because of a breakdown, we were handed a fastpass as we exited to use within the park, which was pretty awesome.

Lunch in the UK

By now it was noon and we were starving.  Not sure what to eat, but knowing that the options were pretty big here, we headed to the UK and sat down at the Rose and Crown where we were treated to quite the feast.  Unlike our experience at Be Our Guest, the day before, this meal was filled with laughter, good food and a waiter who liked to remind us that everything on the menu was something he regularly ate back home.  Don’t lie!  You eat McDonalds!  Ahem.

I ate a lovely Irish meal of corn beef and cabbage which was delicious.

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Carl had a pot pie which was beautiful on the outside and juicy on the inside.

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We also decided to enjoy some hard ciders, which might have accounted for the large amount of laughter.

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As it was Carl’s birthday, we were also treated to some lovely dessert cupcakes.  We also ordered that lovely number to the left.  I’ll be honest.  I don’t remember what it was, but it was delicious.  Just show the waiter that picture and tell them you want that.

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World Showcase

From there, we took a leisurely stroll around the World Showcase.  The nice part about the fact that we’ve gone to Disney so much this past year is that there is no longer a need to run and see and do everything.  We’ve gotten to the point where we can relax and really treat it as a vacation, which is the best way to enjoy it.

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Soarin’

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We couldn’t possibly leave Epcot without an adventure to the new Soarin’ ride which, I am happy to say is one of the best rides in any of the parks.  The ride, if you haven’t been, lifts you into the air and, with the use of a large curved screen, makes you feel as though you are ‘soarin’ through different beautiful regions of the world.  It is absolutely breathtaking, and while Frozen Ever After was good, this was really the high point of our trip to Epcot.

Halfway through the day, our journey to the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow was finished.  We said farewell and jumped on a bus headed to the Hollywood that once was but never would be.

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Hollywood Studios

The feeling at Hollywood Studios was definitely filled with Star Wars.  Upon arriving, we quickly got swept up in watching a very cool Star Wars show in which several characters came out, pointed angrily at the audience and then left the stage.  This culminated in the whole gang coming out for a group photo.

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We also made time to meet some fun characters we hadn’t met before while we were at HS.  Since we’d just seen him dancing away in Norway, we thought it a good time to say hi to Olaf.

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Then, since it was beginning to rain, we headed over to say hi to Chewie.  Unfortunately, Carl made the poor choice of making fun of Chewie’s height, which resulted in him being excluded from the photo having goodness.

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Rock’n Roller Coaster

We have a funny relationship with roller coasters.  Carl will get on them, but he doesn’t like it.  I love them but I’m always nervous about them if I haven’t ridden them before.  This being said, we had extra time and an extra fast pass, so we decided to head over to Rock’n Roller Coaster.  This ride essentially shoots you super fast into a dark ride that spins and flips and makes you scream.  We loved it and had a blast, and even snagged this photo to prove that we were both terrified.

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Beauty and the Beast Show

We’d never been to the show before so we decided to hit up the last one of the day.  While it is fun, it in no way compares to the excellence of the Finding Nemo show.  It also is staged in an outdoor ampitheater so be warned: If you are watching this in the middle of the night, you will probably feel a bit toasty.

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Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular

This was probably the number one reason we ended our day at HS.  We loved the old Star Wars fireworks show and wanted to see what was new and different about this one.  Essentially, much like the Tree of Life and the castle during Celebrate the magic, images are cast onto the Chinese Theater while fireworks are shot off behind it.

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I have mixed feelings here.  The show is VERY cool.  I’ll give it that.  But the old one which was just fireworks set to Star Wars music and quotes, brought us close to tears.  It was very moving and the actual fireworks display was on par with Wishes at Magic Kingdom.  While this was cool and full of awesome images from all the Star Wars films, it never quite got to that incredibly moving point.  However, both of them are still far better than the other nighttime show at HS, Fantasmic, which we decided to skip this time around.

All in all, we had a great time at the parks and even as I write this, I can’t wait to go again.  Actually, our next trip might not be so far off, but more about that later.  In the meantime, have you visited any of these new, or old, attractions and what did you think?  Let me know in the comments!

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7 replies »

  1. Disappointed to hear the new Star Wars fireworks aren’t as good as the Symphony with the Stars, they really blew me away! Great blog though, seems like you managed to fit in all the highlights of Epcot and Hollywood Studios!

  2. These sound amazing!

    We’ve only ever been to Disneyland Paris and that was years ago. We enjoyed the attractions in the Disneyland Park, but the Walt Disney Movie Studios Park was a bit of a let down as rides were being refurbished. The best bit was Cinémagique but it doesn’t sound as impressive as what they have over there.

  3. Glad you had a great time! I’m sad they got rid of Maelstrom, but I’m so glad to hear you liked the new Frozen ride! I can’t wait to go on it someday. I really want to see that Star Wars firework show, too!

  4. My girlfriend and I skipped the Star Wars fireworks the other night, it allowed us to escape the park before the crowds. I’m glad you liked Frozen and Soarin’! We are headed to Epcot today. 🙂

  5. Hoping to hit the new Soarin’ and Frozen when we’re there for the Halloween party the next-to-last weekend of September. Glad you got to get to everything that you hadn’t done before! The parks are so much more enjoyable when you don’t have a huge laundry list of things to try and acoomplish.

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