Walt Disney World or Disney Cruise Line?

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If you are thinking of a Disney vacation but aren’t sure where you should go, you aren’t alone! Plenty of people struggle with this issue since they are two very different types of vacations yet they still overlap in some aspects. So, let’s dig in and see which one might be right for you!

If you have been to Walt Disney World frequently and often you might find yourself wanting to avoid the crowds, heat, or construction. This is the perfect time to consider a Disney Cruise. You won’t see cranes or walls in ‘go away green”, a drained moat or attractions under refurbishment.

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A big perk is that a Disney Cruise vacation is pretty all inclusive, your food and some of the drinks, child care (unless they are under 3) all part of it. There are some things you have to pay extra, but you don’t have to budget for food or pay for the dining plan or even for a pop. You don’t have to do an excursion, as the ship offers plenty of activities even while in port! In fact this is a great time to swim as you will have the pool to yourself.

The lack of lines and crowds is also a huge point to Disney Cruise Line! Sure you might stand in line for the AquaDuck or AquaDunk but you don’t have to stand in line for EVERYTHING! You go right on in at dinner time, and food lines move very quickly because of all the choices.

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No construction or closed attractions! Yes we all know that attractions need to be maintained and repaired and changes are being made to Downtown Disney, and every single park to make things better but in the meantime there is no need to look at the construction walls, a half dismantled hat, or a gorgeous statue covered in a box.

New experiences and places! If you have never traveled abroad or want to visit a new country, a cruise is the perfect option! You can show your sweetie or your children new places with the Disney difference. This can also show you where you might want to take your next vacation, a place you never thought to go to before getting a taste while visiting on a cruise.

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You can have adult time! Of course we all love our little precious bundles of joy whether they are still a bundle or a teenager, but it is lovely to have a break as well. If you followed along with my recent Disney Cruise Line trip report you will see a common thread: my daughter LOVED the youth clubs! She spent a lot of time in them having fun with new friends and Disney friends. She played games, did crafts, had lunch, played in the play areas, had a pajama party and even performed on stage. This really makes is possible to have a relaxing vacation while you all have fun.

So now that we have covered Disney Cruise Line let’s look at a Walt Disney World Vacation!
If you have never been you should correct that ASAP. It is never too late or too early for a first visit. The parks are jam-packed with things to do! If you love rollercoasters, boat rides, stage shows, character meets, delicious food and fireworks you will love it! Food it a big deal at Disney! You can do so many character meals and meet princesses, Pooh and friends, Mickey and gang, the Disney Junior crew and even special events to meet Star Wars characters or Disney Villains! Sure you can get burgers and fries, (delicious ones at that) but you can also get 5 star dining, buffets and everything in between. Plus this doesn’t even touch on snacks *coughDOLEWHIPcough*. Just get that dining plan, you won’t regret it!

The whole family can get in on the fun! Walt Disney created his original park, Disneyland, out of a desire to be able to enjoy his Sunday with his daughters, a place where the whole family can have fun. This means the height restrictions are few and low. So that a tall 4 year old can get on the rollercoasters and enjoy themselves. The characters have come right out of your favorite movie or show and everyone loves to meet their favorite mouse!

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Special events, no one does them like Disney. Granted they are usually at an extra cost but if you use that as your park day you won’t regret going to the Halloween or Christmas parties! The parks are completely decked out and so are the characters and guests.   You can seem amazing Christmas lights, parades and firework shows, sure to bring delight to all!

Disney Resorts are all pretty grand too! They have a hotel for all budgets and the perks of staying there are many. No need to rent a car, let Disney do all the driving! And get more hours in the parks with smaller crowds! Of if you don’t want to leave your resort you have amazingly well themed pools and some have waterslides. During the day many will have activities for kids at the pool and resorts. Most have some delicious food offerings too! Or if you want to be active you can rent a bike, water craft, fishing poles, go for a walk, and take a trip to Downtown Disney. And then that evening you can watch a movie outside or roast marshmallows over a fire!

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There are 4 parks and 2 water parks! Which means there is so much to do! You can choose to stay at your resort or Downtown Disney for a day but if the parks are open that is where I want to be! You can see animals on safari, watch a veterinary procedure and ride a rollercoaster all in one park. They are so diverse and entertaining that you will have plenty of things to fill your day at each park.

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So now it is up to you to decide! You can put the question to your travelling party and see what they are interested in doing while on vacation. No matter which you choose you really cannot go wrong!

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Podcast Episode 44: Breakfast Dining

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so join us this week as we talk about all things breakfast at Disney!  Find out what we like and where we like to get it, as well as the news about the Be Our Guest breakfast offerings!

Happy listening!

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What does $1500 get a family of 4 at Walt Disney World?

In a new series the Dole Whippies explore what’s available for families on different budgets at Walt Disney World. For our examples we’re going to explore families of 4 with two adults and two children between the ages of 3 and 9. All rates are also going to be “rack” which means during a time in which there are no discounts offered at Disney. As we all well know, those times are few and far between! If you choose to travel during a time that there are special offers at WDW you’ll be able to upgrade rooms, tickets or even earn a free dining plan for these same prices. As always, for guidance on which vacation options are best for you and your family feel free to email us or fill out the “Free Vacation Planning!” tab right here on our website. The assistance of one of the lovely travel agents working for Magical Moments Vacations doesn’t cost you a single penny on top of these prices!

Option Number 1

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Three days and two nights at Disney’s Pop Century Resort (value resort)

3 Day Base Tickets

$1,492.16

Option Number 2

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Three days and two nights at Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside Resort (moderate resort)

2 Day Park Hopper Tickets

$1449.84

Option Number 3

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Two days one night at Disney’s Contemporary Resort in a Garden Wing Garden View Room (deluxe resort)

2 Day Park Hopper Tickets

$1476.84

Which option would you choose? What other budgets would you like to see us explore (and yes, there will be a “fantasy” budget to conclude this series, for fun!)?

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2015

The dates for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2015 have been released.  Tickets will go on sale in April.

November
8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 17, 19, 20, 29

December
1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 13, 15, 17, 18
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a hard ticketed event  on select nights starting in November.  The party takes place in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.  During the party there are special fireworks, parades, rare character meets and cookies and hot cocoa.  The number of tickets is limited so be sure to order early as the can and will sell out.

 

Irish Disney Characters

Just for a little fun on this St. Paddy’s Day, let’s talk about some Disney characters that hail from Ye Olde Eire.

Bootstrap Bill Turner

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Portrayed by Stellan Skarsgaard, this character debuted in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and is the father of our hero, Will Turner.  Because he was cursed and left suffering on the ocean floor, he’s now covered in some rather unattractive sea flora.  Not the best look.

The Dignitaries

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There are lots of foreign types in Arendelle for Queen Elsa’s coronation, including one from Ireland.  He’s the one at the end who says “Wonderful!” after Anna gives Hans his well-deserved sucker punch.

Dr. Robin Doyle

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Remember The Legend of Tarzan?  Dr. Doyle was a lovely Irish anthropologist that captured the eye of Professor Porter.  Sheena Easton lent her voice to this character.  Both the show and the singer are blasts from the past.

Policeman

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I know the Irish policeman is kind of a trope, but this guy from Lady and the Tramp inadvertently helps Tramp and Lady in their adventures by arguing with a professor for bringing a dog into the park.  He’s worth a mention in the canine love affair.

Maybe you have some favorite Irish Disney characters?  Share them in the comments and may you have the luck of the Irish today!

Podcast Episode 43: How Far Does Your Money Go At Disney?

Have you ever wondered what kind of Disney vacation you could have if you only had a certain amount to spend?  Wonder no longer because we’ve laid out some helpful scenarios with common budget amounts for you!  There’s lots of great information this week so if you think you can’t do Disney because of your budget, you’ll want to catch this week’s episode!  Spoiler alert: Disney works with most budgets!

Happy listening!

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Part 2: If I was an Imagineer for the Day at Disney…Epcot Version

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So, a few weeks ago I shared what changes I would make if I were an Imagineer for a day (boy I am quick with the renovations!) at Magic Kingdom. Today, I move on to Epcot. Many of you may be familiar with how and why this park was developed but to those not familiar I am going to give you a brief history. Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow (EPCOT) was planned and began it’s building near the end of Walt Disney’s life. It was to be a prototype of a planned community where people lived and worked. After Walt died most of his plans were destroyed and it became the theme park we all know and love as Epcot.

So, I am going to change three things about this park and the first is adding a country to world showcasethe World Showcase. I love something about all the countries that are already there but know there is room for more…and though I get stuck between a few options such as Brazil or Australia know that I am more than willing to visit these countries tourism boards and find out what they offer and decide who gets the new pavilion.

Second, I would change Soarin’ over California into Soarin’ over Florida or the East Coast or something other than exactly the same as California’s Disneyland’s attraction. I hear rumors that this is already in the works but who knows? Maybe they will read this post and decide to move forward!

ellensThird, I would change Ellen’s Energy Adventure…I know I love it too for a nice, long nap but even though this was a great attraction it has run its course. It is a tad bit too long for the normal attraction and attention span and it tends to get tiring in the middle. Plus with all that is going on it just is slow. It is a huge space and there is so much potential for a really cool new futuristic attraction that it seems long overdue to me.

So, what do you think? What country in the World Showcase do you want to see? Any you want to go? Tell me what you would do if you were an Imagineer for the Day at Epcot?

Beyond Burgers & Fries: Animal Kingdom

In the third edition of our Beyond Burgers & Fries series we explore our options at Disney’s Animal Kingdom!

I should probably be more ashamed to admit that I only have very limited experience with counter service meals at the Animal Kingdom, but I’m not. For me there is one and only: Flame Tree BBQ. With limited options to begin with at this park, it makes sense that there is one that stands so far above the rest. Flame Tree BBQ offers chicken, ribs, and my personal favorite the pulled pork sandwich. The pulled pork sandwich comes with cole slaw (which of course I put on top of my sandwich, the way it should be!) Oddly enough one of the biggest draws for me to Flame Tree BBQ is actually a drink: The mandarin orange lemonade. I’m not sure what it is about this drink, but I have more cravings for this drink than almost any other item from Walt Disney World! An added bonus is that you can have this drink as a specialty cocktail: mandarin orange vodka lemonade! Together these options make for MY perfect Animal Kingdom lunch.

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Another option at the Animal Kingdom for a good quick meal is Yak & Yeti. Yak & Yeti is a table service restaurant but they do have a quick service called Yak & Yeti Local Foods Cafe. They feature items such as Honey Chicken and a Teriyaki Beef Bowl. While I’ve never personally eaten there I’ve been informed by the other Dole Whippies that a quality meal can be found here!

And as always, if you do prefer that burger or chicken nuggets they can be found at Restaurantasaurus in the Dinoland USA area. Restarauntasaurus does also have a macaroni and cheese hot dog and a grilled chicken sandwich that both sound pretty good if I’m ever able to tear myself away from Flame Tree BBQ!

Where do you like grabbing a quick bite at Animal Kingdom? We’d love to hear in the comments or on our Facebook page at facebook.com/DoleWhipped ! 

Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party 2015

The dates for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party have been released for 2015.  Tickets go on sale in April!

September
   15, 18, 20, 22, 25, 27

October
1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18, 20, 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 31

November
 1

Be sure to get your tickets early since some of the parties can and will sell out!

If you are unfamiliar with Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, you should know it is a hard ticketed event that takes place in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World on select dates in the fall.  There is a limited number of tickets sold and after 7pm the park is closed to only those with party tickets.  This is a really amazing event with fireworks, a special parade and rare character meets.

Podcast Episode 42: Early 2015 News

Join us this week as we fill you in on all the new developments, changes, and refurbishments at Disney for the year.  Find out which attractions will be getting updates to accommodate more guests, which ones will be closed during your trip, and which ones people like to spread ashes in.  Yeah, ashes.  It’s a wild ride and if you’re planning a Disney trip this year you don’t want to miss these important details!

Happy listening!

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