What time is it – Summer Time!!
At least for a few more weeks! One of the best ways to end your enchanted Disney day on the perfect note is to relax with a beverage and go over all the “highs” of the day! If you’re staying in one of the monorail resorts, a fun twist is to try a different location each night! These are my Top 5 favorite drinks to sip while I unwind at the end of the day – each one quality ensured by your favorite Mouse Planner!
#2: Disney Springs pick!
When it's time to take a break from the parks, you need to head to Bongo's Cuban Cafe, located in Disney Springs!!! Ask for the "Traditional Mojito" -- but be sure that you know what size you'd like!! I took our servers advice and went LARGE! I can tell you - it was worth it!!!
#5: Just for Fun!
- At the Polynesian - ANYTHING at Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto is perfect. With so many fun tropical drinks to choose from – it’s hard to pick. But watch out – your bar order may trigger some surprises from the staff AND the room decorations!!!
ULTIMATE PICK!!!! Disney has just extended it’s amazing Highway in the Sky Dine Around through September!!!. This was introduced during the holidays and became so popular, Disney continued the experience. Check in takes place at The Wave…of American Flavors at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. From there – enjoy a five course progressive dinner at each monorail resort!!
I’m dying to try this one – if anyone gets to go before me – I would LOVE a full report!!!
As Disneyland is about to launch its new Max Pass option (July 19, 2017), I’ve had so many people ask me about the differences between Walt Disney World in FL and Disneyland in Southern California. Growing up on both coasts, I’ve visited both and BOTH are amazing; but there are definitely differences to be aware of when visiting each!
#1: Theme parks and attractions
#2: Magical Express
Walt Disney World in Florida:
If you’re arriving by plane and flying into Orlando International airport and staying on at a Walt Disney World resort, you are able to take advantage of Disney’s free transportation, the Magical Express, to and from your resort. Your bags will be taken from the airport to your resort and you will be whisked away in an air conditioned motor coach to your final destination – Walt Disney World property!
Disneyland in Southern California:
If you arrive by plane in Southern California, there are many options to get you from your airport to Disneyland property, but there is not a free Magical Express option. Depending on which airport you fly into, there are different transport options available – be sure to check which is best for your family!
#3: Fast Passes
Disneyland in Southern California:
Disneyland also has Fast Passes, but guests are not able to “pre-select”. Instead, once you are inside the parks, you travel to the attraction that you would like to ride later, scan your admission ticket, then go ride another attraction while you wait for your Fast Pass time.
NEW: I previously mentioned Disneyland’s “Max Pass” option has launched, and is available at a price of $10 per guest, per day. The MaxPass will work within the Disneyland app and allow you to select a FastPass electronically for an attraction instead of having to walk to each individual attraction every time you want a new Fast Pass. Max Pass also allows each guest to receive unlimited PhotoPass privileges, too, including attraction photos.
The Max pass will NOT eliminate the traditional free Fast Pass system, it will simply be there as another option for guests.
Walt Disney World in Florida
When you are thinking about where to dine during your Walt Disney World vacation – your magic number is 180! All guests are able to make dining reservations 180 days in advance (from your check in date). If you are staying at one of Walt Disney World resort, guests are even able to secure those hard to find reservations and character dining 180 + 10 days out!
While visiting the Florida location, you are also able to sign up for one of Disney’s Dining Plans. There are three versions of dining plans available for those staying at a Walt Disney World resort. The dining plans is purchased and added to your reservation before you arrive and provides you with an allotted number of meals, drinks and snacks for your stay.
#5: Magic Bands
Disneyland in Southern California
Another difference between the two locations would be that Disneyland does not utilize the Magic Band system. Instead, your park ticket will be used for your theme park entry, photo pass option and Fast Pass / Max Pass options.
So – while so many ask the question, “which is better” – I can honestly say BOTH!
Disneyland is where the magic began - I can walk down Main Street and know that Walt's original vision is all around. Everything in Disneyland is just a step away and easily accessible for all ages.
Walt Disney World is an opportunity to truly see the world without leaving the comforts of home. One morning I can explore an African safari and the next minute be in the world of Avatar -- unbelievable!
Do you have a favorite location!
During the day, you can take the opportunity to visit the ship’s Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, which will be transformed into the “Pirate’s League” for this event. This option is available to entire families – not just little ones! You will be made over into your choice of pirate (they will have choices for you to look at when you arrive). Once you’re finished – be prepared to swear a pirate oath and be ready to plunder the
Eat Like a Scalawag – dinner!!!
The fun begins when we entered our stateroom and found a gift of party bandanas for each guest. I tied mine around my neck, while my little guy tied his on his head – whatever works for you!
For your evening meal, your restaurant will have a transformed menu to fit the pirate occasion! No matter which restaurant you are in, they will serve the same menu – no worries – you won’t miss out! We were in Animator’s Palatte that night and the “show” around the restaurant was all pirate themed. Scenes from Peter Pan and Pirates of the Caribbean flashed across the walls – this turned into a great game to keep the younger ones occupied as we waited for our food. As each scene flashed on the walls – the kids had to guess which movie was being shown!.
The menu itself resembled an old treasure map and the kids had their own “pirate hat” to wear throughout the meal. Meal options had fun themed names, like “Jolly Rogers Barbeque Rib Salad”, or “Pirates Gold-en Pot Stickers” (menu items are subject
Our servers were dressed in pirate wear and totally set the tone for the night with fun pirate themed jokes and “pirate talk”. Be prepared to hear a lot of “Arrrrr matey!!” this evening!
Pirates in the Caribbean Deck Party
After the second dining, it will be time to PARTY!!!! Head to the main pool deck and be ready for some fun! This will be a great time to see Disney characters in their pirate gear – definitely bring your camera for meet and greets to snap a picture of your family with Mickey and his crew! Throughout the evening, there will be a pirate show, dancing, music, trivia interactive games and so much more!!! At the end of the night there will be a spectacular fireworks display (note that some itineraries do not allow for fireworks and the display could be canceled due to weather conditions).
Tips to make sure everyone enjoys their pirate night!
2. Gather your pirate gear BEFORE you arrive on board. While Disney often provides their guests with fun pirate bandannas, the rest of your costume is up to you. The shops on board will have a TON of accessories and costumes to help you get ready for the night, but the prices are a bit high. I totally recommend going to a costume shop after Halloween, and gathering your hats and eye patches then!
3. Take some time before you leave to introduce your kids to all the Disney Pirates. While Captain Jack Sparrow is the most recent on the big screen – don’t forget Captain Hook! I recommend scheduling some time to have some family movie nights BEFORE you leave and watch Peter Pan! If kids are younger, they might already know Jake and the Neverland Pirates – but it’s a good idea to at least let them see some pictures of Jack Sparrow and the Pirates of the Caribbean to give them an idea of who might be at
4. If your child has sensory issues – you want to take some precautions to help block out things that might overstimulate them. Bringing an ipod and ear buds is a great way to let them enjoy the sights, but have soothing, familiar sounds playing in their ears. If you feel like it might be too much – I would actually recommend skipping the party. Instead – have something else that is fun and special for them to do. Maybe surprise them with a room celebration (decorations that your stateroom attendant can put up for an additional price) and a special treat waiting in the room!
Let me know if you have any more tips for how to have a swashbuckling time at
Pirate Night on Disney Cruise Line!!!
Monica Clark, your