Apr. 28th, 2017

mmcirvin: (Default)
I'm only now realizing just how many attractions of note we managed to hit on our trip.

Soarin' Around the World )

The Seas with Nemo and Friends )

The Great Movie Ride )

What else? Our hotel was OK--Coronado Springs, a moderate-tier resort located somewhere between Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. My daughter picked it because of the elaborately themed "Lost City of Cibola" pool with its fake Mesoamerican pyramid and long, twisty Jaguar Slide (it's quite a hike from most of the guest rooms, but there are three smaller, closer pools as well, keyed more to adult guests). The pool was pretty great; the grounds were lovely; the room was clean and of an OK size, but seemed like it hadn't been renovated in a long time. Paying for a "water view" doesn't get you much--there's a little window looking across the exterior walkway toward the resort's central lagoon. Restaurants on site ranged from a not-very-good budget cafeteria to a really quite good sit-down Mexican place and breakfast room. There are places at the hotel from which you can see most of Hollywood Studios' fireworks show, and, at a greater distance, Epcot's.

All in all, it wasn't a huge step up from the Pop Century budget resort where we stayed last time, except for the fancier pool and the presence of good restaurants on site. It was all right, but Universal's middle-tier Loews Royal Pacific is way better.

Other good food at Disney World: The Boma buffet at Animal Kingdom Lodge is still incredible; Spice Road Table at the Epcot Morocco pavilion is pretty great (I've heard the other restaurants in that area are too--it's also the best-looking World Showcase pavilion at Epcot, probably because of the involvement of Moroccan artisans who gave it a real sense of place). The Portobello Italian restaurant at the Disney Springs shopping area is pretty good.

On the Wednesday, the middle day of our trip, we took a day off from the parks and spent it at the hotel pool and at Disney Springs, finishing with the Cirque du Soleil La Nouba show there, which we greatly enjoyed. The show is apparently shutting down at the end of the year--whether they'll be replacing it with another Cirque du Soleil show or with something else entirely, I have no idea. Disney Springs has gone by many names; it was originally Lake Buena Vista Shopping Village, and was recently called Downtown Disney. Now it's been vastly expanded and has a fake history and an equally fake "springs" area by its open-air shopping mall, which is very pretty. My feet were really hurting by then, but by Thursday morning it felt like I'd gotten a second wind and was willing to march through the parks again.

All in all, good trip. The hugeness of Walt Disney World can make it overwhelming; this was the first time that Sam and I did most of the planning, and I think we pulled it off pretty well. I think it will be a few years before we go back. Maybe after Star Wars Land opens.

October 2017

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