I'm just gonna say it: Spontaneity is good for humans. Temporarily leaving behind responsibilities, obligations and everyday
ruts routines to make room for new experiences is vital to our growth. Sometimes spontaneity looks like, leaving the city and going for a long afternoon hike, forgoing my planned dinner and eating at a new restaurant or seeing a matinée on a Tuesday. And sometimes it looks like driving 11 hours to Florida for a weekend!
The Relevent Podcast Anniversary Show was the main catalyst for bringing us to the sunshine state, but we couldn't pass up an opportunity to visit Disney World. The one and only time my family traveled to Florida was in 1996 when we spent a week exploring the different parks. I still have the fondest memories of that trip. Both Jordan and I have been to Disneyland in California multiple times but he's never been to Disney World. As a Walt Disney enthusiast, we knew we had to make it happen!
Jordan and I made the most of our short time. ;-) At Walt Disney World, you can't even begin to see everything in every park in one day. It's too massive. We chose to visit two parks: Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios, spending most of our day in Magic Kingdom.
Surveying the crowds is quite amusing. Most people are having the time of their life. But there are a few haggard parents in the bunch. Mad props to people who bring along toddlers. When my family went to Disney World, I was the youngest (at 10) and it was perfect. I was able to keep up with my older brothers and go on all of the rides!
Jordan and I kept pinching ourselves all day. Disney World (and theme parks in general) can be overwhelming when unprepared, but when you plan just a little bit and then allow for the magic to take over the rest, it truly is a special place! The parks themselves are beautiful and clean while the staff, AKA "cast members," are truly the nicest and friendliest people. Our tour guide for the Jungle Cruise was my favorite – she kept the puns and jokes going the whole time without breaking into a smirk. I wonder if they create their own lines or if each ride has specific a script?
^ The Swiss Family Robinson is one of Jordan and my favorite Disney movies!
^ The sword wouldn't budge. Maybe next time!
We had the best luck with ride lines and wait times. The longest we waited for a ride was only 60 minutes and most were much less. My favorite rides were: Space Mountain, Under the Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid (the new animatronics are super expressive and they really pop with the help of clever paint and black lighting) and the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (which is a new thrill ride).
Space Mountain, in Tomorrowland, has always been one of my favorite rides. I remember being totally enamored as a 10 year old and to this day it still brings me a thrill. Besides a few "stars" twinkling in the sky, you are zooming around in total darkness. The experience is exhilarating!
As far as the other parks go, we chose to visit Hollywood Studios over Epcot and Animal Kingdom mainly to ride Tower of Terror and Star Tours. I always forget the intensity level of Tower of Terror! So fun. Star Tours was a blast (he he) as well. Jordan always geeks out with anything Star Wars related.
Walt Disney World at night is spectacular. I forgot about the fireworks and light shows which illuminate the sky above Cinderella's castle. I am so glad we were able to stay through to the end of the night. We exited from riding the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train just as the sun began to set. The whole sky was lit with the prettiest hues of pink, orange, purple and blue.
The air of the evening turned romantic and dreamy. I told Jordan I could finally see why people honeymoon in Disney World and Disneyland -- it's a magical place, especially at night! If we were local, I would bring a picnic and watch the fireworks regularly.
Thanks for being you, Disney World! We had so much fun. Even though it was a quick trip, there isn't enough space for all the sights and memories. Until next time...