All 4 WDW parks were super slow that day. We got lucky. Nearly everything, except for Slinky & FOP (and, surprisingly short, that was with Navii shut down at the time), at the 4 parks were walk ons. We didn't even bother with FP except for one ride (Soarin, that showed a short 30 minute wait anyway)....We were next in line with a couple that really loved FOP. They said they have rode it apx. 3 dozen times since it opened.....FOP was very impressive.Glad to hear you got to only wait 40 minutes for FoP! The excessive wait times are the only downside to that ride.
FoP is very enjoyable. I've only done it once, unfortunately (It started raining and the wait got to an 80). I know it gets compared to Soarin as a better version, but I still do like Soarin more.All 4 WDW parks were super slow that day. We got lucky. Nearly everything, except for Slinky & FOP (and, surprisingly short, that was with Navii shut down at the time), at the 4 parks were walk ons. We didn't even bother with FP except for one ride (Soarin, that showed a short 30 minute wait anyway)....We were next in line with a couple that really loved FOP. They said they have rode it apx. 3 dozen times since it opened.....FOP was very impressive.
I think with a lot of new rides, when you have to wait super long it drags the enjoyment factor down. Example: I recall the early reviews of Gringotts, when it had 3-4 hour long lines, trashing the ride. Now, it's just about always considered top 3,4 or 5 in Universal, since the lines are reasonable. Overly long lines aren't fun, even with great queues. Disney really needs to start improving the capacity on their new attractions. Almost all of their new stuff this decade has really bad capacity (except for Mermaid).FoP is very enjoyable. I've only done it once, unfortunately (It started raining and the wait got to an 80). I know it gets compared to Soarin as a better version, but I still do like Soarin more.
EPIC!Day 30 -Aventura @ Universal Orlando Resort - Four Parks One Day - Part 3
The bus gods were once again on our side and we were soon making our way to the Magic Kingdom, this would be our fourth and final park of the day. The bus was pretty quick but we did have a problem, there was no way security was going to allow us through with the empty glass Jim Beam bottle from Jambo House. There are lockers in the park but thats after security, we could have left it at bell service at BLT but we were pressed for time so I managed to talk my way through it with security who agreed to escort me to guest services where I could leave it to collect later. Security here were actually really cool and most helpful.
It was dark when we got to MK and it was nice to see all the Halloween lights on main street, whilst we were on main street we grabbed a photo to mark the 4P1D challenge, we were not quite done yet but we had nearly two hours to do two rides so whilst we werent quite home and dry we were pretty confident. MK hadn't had anything new since my last visit so any two rides would do here and first up was Pirates of The Caribbean with only a 5 minute wait. It was nearly time for fireworks so with everyone staking their claim for a spot on Main Street we found ourselves making the most of the unexpected short lines. We had a good laugh on Pirates, the buzz of Jim Beam was still with us as we resited ""dead men tell no lies" and sang yo, ho, yo, ho all the way round, arghhhhh.
We checked Splash next, 35 mins, so we tried Big Thunder, 5 mins, that was better. We had a great ride on Thunder, more or less a walk on and we timed it perfect as we had fireworks for our whole ride, this is always a coaster in the dark and even better when you add in the fireworks too . This second ride meant we had completed our four-park challenge with time to spare, the park was still open and the lines still seemed to be short so we decided to see what else we could get on before closing.
Splash was now down to 10 mins so we hit that, we were on a roll. Splash is another classic and it was nice to see everything working as should. Haunted Mansion was reading 15 mins but the line looked much longer when we got in it, so we skipped it, I guess everyone had filed in after the show had finished so the line had got longer but the wait times hadn't caught up yet. Pan was 45 mins as usual but Little Mermaid was only 5 mins so we made this our next and final ride of the day.
We hadn't done bad, 4 parks in one day and two rides in each, 4 in the MK, it was time for a well-earned drink. We headed up Main Street and out of the park towards the BLT, I had my DVC card with me so we decided to the top of the world bar to have a drink and enjoy the view. I started with an IPA 4, it seemed fitting, and I also tried the Apple Pie Martini, both were good. The views from BLT are beautiful and if you go out of the back doors behind the bar you can see right over to Unis Property and I Drive.
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An Uber was 4 mins away, just enough time to settle the bill and get the elevator back down to ground level, we made it down just as our Uber turned up. The trip back was quick and we entertained the driver with some slightly drunken carpool karaoke. The Uber's are pretty reasonable, this one only cost around $15, I have used Uber a few times now and find it to be a fantastic service for getting around. When you consider you can get to most places for the cost of parking at a resort you have to ask is car hire worth it anymore?
Back at Aventura and we hadn't quite done yet, we decided on one last drink at Sapphire Falls but the Bat was packed full with Microsoft employees so we ended up Back up the top of Aventura looking back over at the BLT where we had just come from. Sam went to bed whilst @Mad Dog and I had one last drink, it had been a long day and we had earned it.
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We had an absolute blast doing this challenge, having done the parks many times I enjoyed this different spin on doing Disney. I think I wore both Samantha and @Mad Dog out but I'm pretty sure they both had a day they will never forget, I know I did.
Cue the sad music. Was a blast going along for the ride on this one.Have to say it one more time - EPIC!Day 31 -Aventura @ Universal Orlando Resort - The Last Day
So, this was the day I never wanted to come, our last day in Orlando and the last day of this epic adventure. We were due to fly back to Manchester (UK) from Orlando International at 6.25PM so we were aiming for the airport around 3PM, the last day always feels you are a in limbo, you want to make the most of it but on the same time you are always weary of the clock. But we had the car from yesterday and had hired it so we could drop off at the airport, so at least we had a car for the day and didn't have to worry about an Uber later.
We had a nice stay at the Aventura, the rooms are basic and I have to agree that having to use the tablet to turn the TV and lights off is rather cumbersome but I also enjoyed the ability to cast my vacation photos to the tv and the messaging to front desk was both efficient and convenient. The feel at this hotel is different to the other resorts and that's the point, Aventura is just that, a hotel, whereas the others are full out resort hotels. But it is a decent hotel and has everything you need for a nice stay on top off that Sapphire Falls right is on the doorstep and the other resorts are in easy reach. Aventura isn't without its own highlights, Bar Bistro 17 being the clear winner, the view was stunning and the food was great too.
So, all checked out and the car loaded we headed for a fun, filled time at the outlets. I know, I know, not the best way to spend our last day but we both wanted a couple of things and with the flights later it was an easy way to pass some time. On the way though I did detour up Universal Boulevard so I could nosy at all that new land they purchased, we swung a left onto Destination Park Way and picked up the John Young Parkway and finally West Oak Ridge road to bring us into the premium outlets. I see these guys have started charging for parking now, granted there is still some free but I bet you a $ they'll be charging for all spaces by my next trip.
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Shopping didn't take long, we were pretty near the limit luggage wise and the £-$ isn't at its best at the minute so those offers aren't as favourable these days. We didn't want to eat as we were going to have lunch at the airport to pass the time waiting for boarding so we decided to go to the other outlet at the other end of I Drive, I’d seen a shirt I liked in Diesel but they didn't have my size, so we decided to go to the other store to see if they had it. They didn't but I did find something I liked so it wasn't a wasted journey and furthermore it had killed a bit more time. In hind sight we should have gone to the outlets earlier, grabbed what we wanted and then gone and spent the time at Disney Springs, like I said the last day is always a strange one.
We didn't really have time to do anything else so decided to leave for the airport now, we would be quite early but at least we could get rid of the luggage and the car and I could have a beer. So, it was quick drive up the 528 without any problems, same couldn't be said for dropping the rental off, he hit me with a bill for $128. He was charging me for the car hire, again and a tank of fuel. I told him the guy told me to bring it back at 3/8 full as that’s what was in it when I picked it up, it actually had 4/8 in it when I dropped it off. I was fuming but eventually got the guy to take off the charges. I hate how the car rentals try it on all the time, I remember on my early trips they would try every underhand trick in the book to get you to hand over more cash.
Check in was much easier, so all we had to do now was eat and get through security. We didn't fancy the fast food options so decided to go through security and eat at Outback once airside. Security took a long time so by the time we got to Outback we were starving, 25-minute wait, we were gutted, but the place was full as was the terminal, with Microsoft employees heading home after the conference. Eventually we did get a table and Lunch was pretty good, I had burger with Stilton and my final Sam’s 76 of the trip.
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I was sad boarding the plane, Sam was ready to go home but I wasn't and I didn't want to get on the plane. We had had such a blast over the past 4 and half weeks and I really didn't want it to end, but end it must and it was with a heavy heart I boarded the plane for the 7.5-hour journey back to the UK. The flight was pretty uneventful, we got the usual naff food and I struggled to sleep. We eventually landed back home at around 7.30 am GMT and it was freezing cold, I was expecting it to be cold but geez, it was 46f a far cry from the 90s Id become accustomed to. My Daughter picked us up and drove us the hour and a half back to our home towns of Derby where already the joys of this epic adventure seemed a distant memory.
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But what amazing memories we have, from the Skyscrapers of NYC to the secluded beaches of Castaway Cay and Top of the Smokies in Tennessee to the foothills and rivers of Pittsburgh. We tried to cram as much as possible into this trip and we had an absolute blast doing it.
To all of our wonderful friends, old and new. it was a pleasure to hang out with you all and we look forward to seeing you all again in the not too distant future. It is not the parks or the places you go it's the people you meet along the way that make it special.
So, there you have it, almost 5 weeks, 10 states, 9 parks and 5 countries. It wasn't quite live and interactive as I promised but I'm sure you will agree it was an Epic Adventure and I thank you all for reading along.
It was great seeing you guys again. Heck of a party.We had our annual "Four Amigos" meet up at the Tin Roof bar/restaurant, with some great music from a band that had been on American Idol. Dave @Disneyhead , former IU(OU) photog and staff Bob Wadd(ington), and Dave's girls Abigail and Hanna & her BF. Our fourth Amigo ,Mark @UK-Trigg ,was vacationing in Majorca with Samantha, so he was unable to join us. But so we had UK representation, Paul from Liverpool, who has a vacation website, joined us for a night of heavy partying and theme park tales. Good times with good friends.
and the band was fantastic...played all those hours without a break....Paul from Liverpool is a cool guy and nice addition to the crew. We ran into him at Diagon a few days later....Sorry, but I couldn't remember the name of his internet site.It was great seeing you guys again. Heck of a party.
Here is Paul's twitterand the band was fantastic...played all those hours without a break....Paul from Liverpool is a cool guy and nice addition to the crew. We ran into him at Diagon a few days later....Sorry, but I couldn't remember the name of his internet site.