Disneyland for a WDW Veteran

Jul 22, 2021

“To all who come to this happy place – welcome.” After more than 30 trips to Walt Disney World, I finally made my first visit to Disneyland. I waited over 30 years for it, and it was well worth the wait. I knew I would go back again, but little did I know that Covid would delay things longer than I expected. I did a lot of research prior to the first Disneyland vacation, so I knew there were key differences as well as many similarities. A few of my observations about Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom vs Disneyland:

Castle

When I told people I would be going to Disneyland, every single person I talked to said the same thing: “You know the castle is a lot smaller, right?” Yes, Sleeping Beauty Castle is considerably smaller, but it is THE original castle. This castle stands at 77 feet, while Magic Kingdom’s Cinderella Castle is 189 feet. Even with the size difference, I stood in awe at the beginning of Main Street, U.S.A. This was Walt’s...

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Gideon's Bakehouse: What You Need to Know

May 10, 2021

You’ve, no doubt by now, heard about this new cookie place in Disney Springs. Gideon’s Bakehouse came on the scene in January 2021 and people have been singing their praises ever since. I mean, a ½ pound cookie? Yes, please! Because of the popularity, there should be some strategy involved if you plan to visit. In fact, I have 3 pieces of info that I think everyone needs to know.

The Line

This is probably the #1 item for anyone interested in visiting Gideon’s Bakehouse. Because it is a must-do for so many, the line can become VERY long. There really isn’t physical space for such a long line, so Gideon’s uses a virtual queue most days.

My advice: head straight there when you arrive at Disney Springs. If it isn’t crowded enough for a virtual queue, you will be allowed to line up and enter the bakery. If there is a virtual queue, though, there will be an employee or two outside with tablets taking your contact info. They will take your name...

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What Makes the Grand Floridian GRAND? Part 2

May 10, 2021

In Part 1 of ‘What Makes the Grand Floridian GRAND’, we talked about walking paths, Christmas decor, the spa, and rooms with a view. In Part 2, you are in for even MORE amazing reasons to visit or stay at this spectacular resort.

Lobby: The sights, the sounds, the smells. There is nothing grander than the lobby of the Grand Floridian. Once upon a time, you could enjoy an orchestra nightly and a piano player throughout the day. I’m still holding onto hope that these entertainers will eventually return. In the meantime, you can relax while waiting for your room or dining reservation in any of the super comfy chairs and couches. Be sure to take a look at the gems like the giant birdcage, elevator, and grand staircase. Also, be sure to take in the scents even through your masks. I’ve searched high and low for candles that represent the lobby smell. I’ve come close, but not yet found “the one.” Leave a comment if you found the perfect match for...

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TOP TEN! What Makes the Grand Floridian GRAND? Part 1

Mar 13, 2021

“I’m going to Walt Disney World!” Once you’ve made that decision, you are probably on cloud 9, right? But then come all the details that have to be planned. Number 1 on that list might be: where am I going to stay? For many, those red-shingled roofs and spires scream “Disney”! Before you even make it to the Magic Kingdom bus stop, you catch a glimpse of the beauty and grandeur of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.

Let’s chat about 5 of the TOP TEN of what exactly makes the Grand Floridian GRAND!

 

1. Magic Kingdom Walkway: This has become a game-changer recently. In the past few months, a walkway opened connecting Magic Kingdom to the Grand Floridian. If you want to get a head start in the morning and not wait on the monorail to start running, this could be perfect for you. You will exit near the monorail station, so just a hop-and-a-skip away from the Magic Kingdom tapstiles. The distance is about .7 miles or about a 10-15...

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Three Perks to Going SOLO

Jan 05, 2021

“But I may NEVER get to ride Splash Mountain again!” I cried through teary eyes at my kitchen table one evening in late July 2020. With that, I decided to book a trip back to my happy place. I should also mention that I had no one to go with me, and I booked the trip with 6 days notice -- ya know, right after Walt Disney World reopened after the Covid closure. And guess what? That last-minute, mask-wearing, solo trip turned out to be one of my best trips ever!

I guess I should backtrack just a bit. First, the Disney love runs DEEP in me. I was the 11-year-old crying on the back of the ferryboat after leaving Magic Kingdom on the last day of our first trip back in 1994 because I was so incredibly sad that I probably would never return again (it’s been 35 trips since then).

Next, I’m nothing if not sentimental and nostalgic (see above). So, when I heard that Splash Mountain and Spaceship Earth would undergo drastic changes, I was devastated that I might not...

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