Sunday, December 28, 2014

Annual Pass Diaries: Disney Trip December 2014

Cameron and I purchased Annual Passes for Disney World in October for our anniversary. (well more for my anniversary present) We knew we would be going for a long trip in the Spring with some friends, and figured if we did our 4th and 5th anniversary's there as well it would pay for itself to go ahead and get the annual pass.

I feel like it had more than paid for itself already. I will post more on that later this week, the benefits of having an annual pass, but for now I will leave you with a few of my favorite photos from the trip.

We like to get an early start on trip days, so we packed up the car and rolled out around 6am, to be to Orlando around lunch time.

One of the reasons we were able to make this quick trip happen is Cameron's parents were already down there and graciously let us crash in their condo for a few days.

Once we settled in, and freshened up we headed to Downtown Disney (soon to be Disney Springs) the amount of work that has been done, even since we were there in October, is amazing. I am so looking forward to when it will all be completed. We had dinner at one of our favorites, Raglan Road. Over 80% of the menu can be done Gluten Free and they have a great selection of hard ciders too.
We walked around, and did some shopping but decided to head back to the room fairly early because we knew we were headed to Magic Kingdom the next day.

I had prepared myself for the worst crowds, but honestly it just really wasn't that bad. Maybe not even as bad as the time we were there around Spring break and for sure not as bad as when we accidentally went on the 4th of July haha.

In order to be sure none of the crew got too tired to stay late, we took it easy in the morning, slept in and had breakfast. We headed to Magic Kingdom around lunch time.

Of course our first stop was to get a Mickey bar before we headed to our first FP on Space Mountain. The lines on the rides that usually have long lines were long, like 120 min on Space Mountain around the afternoon. Thank goodness for FP.
Since it had only been two months since we were here, I really didn't have a lot that I felt like I needed to do. I mainly just wanted to relax and enjoy the park.

But one thing that was on my MUST list this time was the Liberty Square River Boat. As far as I can remember (and I asked my parents too) I have never ridden it. It usually has shorter hours than the rest of the park, and to be honest we are usually packing so much into our Magic Kingdom day, we would always just skip it.

After a late lunch we headed over, the boat leaves on the hour and half hour, and we only had a few min to wait to board. We were close to the front of the line, so we got a nice spot for Cameron's parents to sit and it was such a relaxing ride.

Let's talk about the awesome lighting at this time too #nofilter The views on this ride are incredible. I had no idea that there was so much back here. If you haven't done it, this for sure needs to go on your must do list. It is the perfect mid-day relaxing ride.

Perfect views of my favorite ride

Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road
Pro Tip: The boat has three viewing floors. Everyone with kiddos goes up to the top floor (no shade cover) and a lot of people say on the second floor (where you board) I recommend going to the left when you get on, and heading to the bottom floor (this is where you unload the boat as well)

Proof that it really is the WILDEST RIDE IN THE WILDERNESS
Vintage Disney animatronic scenes are one of my favorite things

A non animatronic cutie who had his little feet wrapped around the edge of this marker
I'd be lying if I said my smile isn't always this big when I am in my happy place

Cameron's mom and me on the boat
I said it before and I will say it again, the views from this boat cannot be beat. I will never skip over this again. Liberty Square with Cinderella's Castle in the background is pretty much perfection.

From there, we headed right over to grab a Dole Whip, because ... Dole Whip.
We sat in Adventureland and people watched for a while while we enjoyed our Dole Whips, then we settled in near the Castle to watch the lighting as the sun was going down (with popcorn of course, because Disney = Snacks)

Next came another FP, then dinner, and we settled in to watch Wishes (the fireworks display) We found a new favorite viewing spot (if you don't care about seeing celebrate the magic) It's usually our favorite part, but we've seen it a bunch and didn't feel like braving the crowds.

By now most of the rides are down to super short waits, we walked right on to the Little Mermaid ride and then the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor.
Then we headed up to the Castle to get some close up photos and take in all the beautifulness. I could have hung out up there all night.

I was so glad we were able to make this trip happen because I have never seen the castle all iced over for the winter. Let me tell you, it was worth the whole trip just for that.

Our beautiful day at Magic Kingdom was coming to a close, and just as we were headed out to get some sleep this happened...

Yes, it is snowing on Main Street. Night. Made.

Overall, even though we only went to the parks one day, this day is going down as one of my favorite Disney memories ever. Thanks Cameron for making it happen.

Have you ever visited Disney World in the Winter? What's your favorite part?


  1. I haven't even seen snow in West Virginia and you get to see it in Florida? Insanity!

  2. It may be pretty, but don't taste it. Ruins the entire thing.

  3. Love sharing this recap! I was wondering what all you got to do! Did you make to Tom Sawyer's Island?

  4. I am going to start doing it every time, you should too! We didn't make it, but it is a the #1 task for next time.