November 2012 Trip Report, Day 3
On day 3 of our trip we were originally scheduled to go to Animal Kingdom, but plans changed last minute and we went back to Hollywood Studios. Getting up early is so hard on vacation, so we didn’t get to the park until 9:45. Toy Story Fastpasses were already past when we’d leave the park, so we got Fastpasses for Tower of Terror and rode the Great Movie Ride. No one was getting Tower Fastpasses, so once our journey into the movies was over, it was already time to return to the Tower to use our FPs. As we were walking up, we saw a 120 minute posted wait and heard an announcement that one of the drop towers was down. We didn’t have much else to do, so we decided to wait. The Fastpass and standby lines were certainly longer than usual, but by the time we got to the boiler room, it seemed to be firing on all cylinders again.
Because of that long experience, it was almost lunch time after experiencing only 2 attractions. We headed over to Backlot Express, and I wondered around looking at the details and story of the rooms as we waited for the 11:30 open.
After that we did the Backlot Tour. They didn’t recruit any volunteers for the show, and just fired off the effects. The only other time we’d had this happen was our freezing cold trip in January 2010. It wasn’t terribly cold this day, so maybe they did that to speed up the line.
Right after our tour, a Lights, Motors, Action show was about to start. Tom and I trekked all the way up to the top row, which offered a nice view of property to entertain us as we waited. We both agreed that we prefer Lights, Motors, Action over Indiana Jones for repeat viewing.
Next up, the always entertaining Muppet Vision 3-D. This is one attraction that never gets old!
Afterward, we went back to Animation to try the Wreck it Ralph meet and greet, which had a very long line earlier in the morning. Luckily, we got there just as they opened the line for the next set of greets.
The queue room was hot and stuffy, but entertaining. It’s modeled after Game Central Station, and there are games along the walls, a scrolling status board, and video game music playing.
Ralph is a huge character and can’t sign autographs, so they hand out little presigned cards when you get in line. They also double as a Photopass card, if necessary.
After that, we were spent for the day and went back to Bay Lake Tower for a break. Once we and our friends were prepped and ready for the night, we walked over to the Magic Kingdom for dinner at Be Our Guest.
We got there at little early, and had to kill some time standing around, as they will not let you check in more than 15 minutes ahead of your reservation.
(Some of the following information is also contained in our Be Our Guest review!)
Soon enough we were led through a pair of magic doors. They say they magically open for you, but be forewarned, they also unmagically shut on you. I almost got shut out of the castle by magical doors. We were led through the ballroom and into the West Wing. Quickly our server came to get our drink orders, and in no time a chef came out to discuss my special dietary needs. I can’t eat thyme, so French themed restaurants are a particularly perilous place for me to eat. Through process of elimination, I quickly figured out that the ratatouille was the best safe choice for me.
Tom ordered French onion soup and I ordered the salad trio as appetizers. There is also some good, warm bread for the table to share. Soon, we began to learn the patterns of the room. There are both simulated thunder and roars. They reach a peak around the time a rose petal falls, and then in quick flashes of lighting, the Prince’s portrait above the fireplace flashes into the Beast.
All four adults ordered different entrees. Tom enjoyed the pork, I had the ratatouille, and our friends had the steak and chicken dishes. Everyone was pleased with their meals. Eventually it was time for the dessert cart to come around. I tempered myself and only got one, the strawberry cupcake. It was amazing. Tom and Corey got the chocolate cupcake, and Jacinda got the lemon cupcake. Tom wasn’t sharing, so I didn’t get a chance to try the chocolate.
After our meal, we wondered around until we found the place to meet the Beast in the study. There was no one else meeting at the time, so we were in and out quickly. Photopass was there, which is nice compared to the usual extra purchase at most restaurants with characters.
We finally rode our first attraction in the Magic Kingdom, It’s a Small World. Afterward, we hit Haunted Mansion, and then tried to get to the hub to see the new Celebrate the Magic show. We could barely get close enough to see the castle, so we gave up on Wishes and headed back to Fantasyland via Liberty Square. We saw the larger bursts of Wishes from the new pathway in Fantasyland.
Up next, our first ride on Little Mermaid! By this time of night, it was walk on, so we did it a total of 3 times.
We wondered down the “secret” path to Tomorrowland from Storybook Circus and rose Space Mountain and the TTA before leaving the park just as Extra Magic Hours ended at 11:00.
Up next – more Animal Kingdom!