The Walt Disney World Trip That Never Was - Day Two!
It is now Day Two of the Walt Disney World Blog That Never Was! In this series of blogs I will be writing about what I was meant to be doing each day of my trip and also include lots of handy planning advice to help you create your own Most Magical Disney trip!
First Full Park Day
It’s my first full park day! Or it should have been. Every trip I start my first park day in Magic Kingdom. Seeing Cinderella Castle at the end of Main Street is just so magical and the perfect start to the trip! But this year our holiday would have started during Labor Day weekend. From looking at crowd calendars it seems Magic Kingdom is the busiest park during national holidays, so because of this I swapped to starting our trip in Animal Kingdom!
Crowd calendars are a great way to get a general idea of what the crowd levels are like in each park typically for that time of year and also the day of the week. I look at a few, such as Kenny the Pirate and Undercover Tourist, and then average out the information to work out which days are most likely to be least crowded. This is a great step to take when planning your itinerary to make sure you avoid the super busy days that each park has!
I planned to arrive at Animal Kingdom for rope drop as I knew we would be up early from jet lag. Animal Kingdom is such a beautiful park and so big because there is so much to see! We like to do the safari early in the day, or towards the end of the day, as the animals are more active when it is a bit cooler. So this is usually one of the first attractions we will head to. On the way to the safari we like to grab drinks from Creature Comforts, which is a Starbucks. If you like to start your day with a coffee fix this is perfect for you!
Another good option is to head straight to Pandora and Flight of Passage. Yes it lives up to the hype! This is a super popular attraction, so the lines can be long, so trying to ride it first thing in the morning or late in the day is a good option to have a shorter wait.
I planned to skip Pandora on this day and head straight to the safari and work my way around the park before going back to Pandora towards the end of the day. Pandora lit up at night looks so spectacular. We have only ever visited it during the day. So a night time visit was in order!
Because of Labor Day weekend, and the possibility of the park being busy, we knew we may not get lots done today so we were going to just have a relaxed day, doing as much as we could, and just enjoying being at Disney. We had another Animal Kingdom day planned for later in the trip so we had plenty of time to enjoy everything on offer!
If you are travelling from outside the US jet lag can be your friend! You will most likely be up very early in the morning, at least for the first few days, so use this to your advantage and rope drop the parks! It’s also great for walking around your resort whilst it is nice and quiet, (plus you get great photo ops) and a good time to take advantage of super early breakfast reservations. Early times will be easier to get reservations for as other people will still be in bed! So book the highly sought after breakfast dining experiences early in your trip to take advantage of the jet lag!
Yak and Yeti Restaurant
There aren’t too many table service restaurants to choose from in Animal Kingdom but I’ve heard good reviews about all of them. We’ve visited Yak & Yeti Restaurant before and enjoy their large menu with a wide variety of Asian cuisines. This is a popular restaurant so definitely book at the 60 day mark to get reservations.
I really love that Yak and Yeti has something for everyone! I am a vegan so whenever we dine we have mixed dietary requirements. Yak & Yeti Restaurant has so much on offer for everyone, including lots of vegan and vegetarian options. It is so nice to have a lot of choices!
Because later in the day we would be visiting Disney Springs I booked a lunch reservation here. I also booked an early lunch as I knew we would be hungry from waking up so early! Does anyone feel really hungry on their first day and their body has no idea what time zone they are in or when meal times are?
Lunch reservations are always easier to get than dinner reservations. If you struggle to get a dinner reservation for a restaurant you really want to dine in, try booking for lunch instead. Often times the menus are the same and in some cases the lunch menu is cheaper even though it is the same food!
Another great thing about a lunch reservation at Yak & Yeti Restaurant is we would naturally be in that area of the park around lunch time because of the park layout. The route around Animal Kingdom is a large loop, so whichever direction you take you will most likely be in the Asia section in the middle of the day.
Disney Springs for Labor Day Sales
I planned to head to Disney Springs later in the day to check out some Labor Day sales! There are so many great shops at Disney Springs and if there is a sale on it is definitely worth taking advantage!
Be sure to visit Uniqlo for their cheap and unique Disney t-shirt designs. A great place to stock up on Disney clothing for great prices!
Disney Springs is an entertainment centre, with lots of shops, restaurants, bars and entertainment such as a cinema, a bowling alley and live entertainment. I planned another trip to Disney Springs later in the holiday to take advantage of some of the entertainment on offer!
Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza
For dinner I chose Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza. This quick service restaurant always gets recommended to me. I love that you can pick your own toppings so the pizza is designed specifically for your tastes. And I love that it is cooked fresh and right in front of you! Blaze is also great for people with dietary requirements as they have vegan and gluten-free bases. Because you get to choose every single element of your pizza this is a great location of people that have mixed dietary requirements in their group. Plus the prices are great! So this is an awesome option for a delicious, filling and reasonably priced meal at Disney Springs.
Grabbing some delicious bakery items to take back to the room for dessert is a lovely way to end the first full day!
Erin McKenna’s NYC Bakery is a great allergy friendly location as everything is vegan and gluten-free! Nobody is left out from eating these super tasty baked goods! Offering everything from cakes, to cookies, pastries to brownie and even ice creams and shakes, this is a fab option for anyone with dietary.
Some other great locations of dessert at Disney Springs are Amorette’s Patisserie for beautiful cakes, Sprinkles for their famous cupcakes, Cookie Dough and Everything Sweet for a variety of flavours of cookie dough (which was a must for me to visit!) and Ghirardelli’s Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop.
Grab some bakery items and have them as your breakfast for the next morning!
After a pretty jam packed first day we would then head back to Animal Kingdom Lodge to get some much needed rest ready for our next day!
In tomorrows blog we will be heading to Hollywood Studios to get our first look at Galaxy’s Edge, get all the thrills from the Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster (my favourite!) plus look at how to plan your park day when it is a national holiday!
If you are currently planning your own Walt Disney World trip be sure to check out the Most Magical Guides and Planners to help make preparing for your trip super easy!