The iconic castle. The timeless charm of Mickey Mouse and co. The essence of Disney awesomeness. It’s Magic Kingdom!
Aloha! We had the ‘Ohana Character Breakfast at the Polynesian Resort. It’s a buffet, but they bring the food to you, family-style. There’s only one type of breakfast available, but it isn’t a problem because the food’s amazing.
There’s bread and fruit (health points!), which is served first, and your “ohana” then brings a gigantic platter to the table, piled high with sausages, island-style potatoes, scrambled eggs, BACON, Mickey-shaped waffles… YES!!! There’s also free-flow juice, milk and coffee. An all-round breakfast for champions!
If you can somehow finish a platter, you can ask for a second one, though I wouldn’t recommend stuffing your face right before heading to the rides.
Does “Ohana” sound familiar? You’ve watched “Lilo and Stitch” right? Hands down, one of the best Disney movies EVER. Once you’ve arrived, the cast members will address you as the (insert family name) cousins, and present you with leis, as though you’ve really landed in Hawaii. Everyone was amazingly warm and friendly, even by Disney standards. And there’s Stitch. STITCH!
(Yes I get that it’s a person in a costume. Shh… Don’t spoil it.)
Character meals are THE way to go. Do your research to see which restaurant is likely to feature your favourite characters, then MAKE RESERVATIONS. Then all you have to do is show up, sit back, and enjoy your meal while the characters work the room. When you see them coming towards your table, quickly wash down your food, whip out your camera(s) and start jumping around like an excited kid all over again.
Why go to them, when they can come to you?
The characters must have had loads of improv training, because they stay in character no matter what. They’re obviously more playful with the little ones, but don’t worry, they’re nice to the kids at heart too. Most of them have distinctive quirks, so it’s quite fun to see what they’ll say or do. Except Mickey, who’s quite boring, really.
Some of them also do fun things like “kidnap” you and bring you around the restaurant. I didn’t see Pluto do that to anyone else, so how’s that for special?
On with the rides! Aim for the more popular rides in the morning, before the crowds pour in. Splash Mountain turned out to be really kid-friendly, i.e. not steep at all. And we came out fairly dry, so it’s makeup-friendly too!
See the disparity? Dear Edwin, can you please take better pictures of me?
The Citrus Swirl (pictured) is supposedly a must-try, but personally I didn’t get what the fuss is about. It’s a huge, dense, half-and-half orange and vanilla soft serve, which was a sizeable snack for the two of us! We had that while we were watching a mini-show in front of the castle, and the hot Florida sun made it one big sticky mess. Well, it kept our sugar levels high. Not that I needed it.
If you haven’t already read about it, the Disney Dining Plan is a must-have. All the plans include snack credits, which you can use to get selected ice-cream, fruit, chips, drinks etc.
I haven’t seen a Disney park during a non-holiday season, but I imagine that it looks most beautiful with the Christmas decorations. Can it get any lovelier than a “snow-covered” castle?
Nothing, absolutely nothing, beats the fireworks in Magic Kingdom. Everything’s perfectly timed to the swelling music, and easily captures the heart of every Disney fanatic. I swear I almost shed a tear. Almost.
As I’m typing this, I really wish I could be back there now! Well, I guess these posts will tide me through till the next trip. The Mickey Christmas Party will be up next, so stay tuned!
(Last picture taken from greencupboards.com)