Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

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Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby Ape » Fri Feb 02, 2018 7:32 am

We just got back yesterday from our first legitimate vacation to Disney World where we stayed at a Disney resort and took advantage of everything they offer to make the trip easier. I will do a full trip report in this thread over the next week or so with lots of pictures.

If you haven't seen my posts before I have kids aged 4 and 2. We did this trip for them as I am the type that prefers the big coasters and parks like Cedar Point over a ton of theming like at WDW. I was left with my jaw on the ground many times and felt like a kid myself while at the parks. We stayed at Art of Animation and visited Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios. One park did leave me feeling underwhelmed but the other two I feel like I can't get enough of.

I hope to have the first part of the report up by the end of today and I hope whoever decides to read along enjoys what I have to offer.

Stay tuned...
Last edited by Ape on Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:55 am.

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby bert425 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:11 am

Ape wrote:We just got back yesterday from our first legitimate vacation to Disney World where we stayed at a Disney resort and took advantage of everything they offer to make the trip easier. I will do a full trip report in this thread over the next week or so with lots of pictures.

If you haven't seen my posts before I have kids aged 4 and 2. We did this trip for them as I am the type that prefers the big coasters and parks like Cedar Point over a ton of theming like at WDW. I was left with my jaw on the ground many times and felt like a kid myself while at the parks. We stayed at Art of Animation and visited Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios. One park did leave me feeling underwhelmed but the other two I feel like I can't get enough of.

I hope to have the first part of the report up by the end of today and I hope whoever decides to read along enjoys what I have to offer.

Stay tuned...


can't wait to see your report!

I'm a little surprised you didn't do EPCOT, since the kiddos would likely have loved Nemo.. . but I'm sure they enjoyed lots of the animals at AK.

looking forwards to the pics!
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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby boldikus » Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:36 am

Bring it on!

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby Ape » Fri Feb 02, 2018 1:33 pm

Part 1 Travel Day

I never really know how to start these reports but I guess how we got there is an alright way to start. My kids have never been on a airplane and after the 17 hour long ride in the car last Feb after a cruise there was no way in hell I would do that again with two kids. I asked my 4 year old son Jamey how he would like to get there and he responded with "I wanna fly on a airplane dada!" this caused instant tears of joy knowing I would not have to live that special version of hell that is the long car ride. I had found a flight out of Indy non stop through Southwest round trip for the 4 of us for $500. At the time I booked this was literally half the price of what I was finding out of Cincy and those had layovers. I would rather drive the two hours and catch a non stop flight than deal with layovers having two young kids.

The airport in Indy was very easy to deal with and few people around getting through TSA and everything was a breeze. A note for this entire trip and to those that may read this that are gentleman with long beards, you will be selected for every "random" screening in existence.It did not matter if it was the airport or at parks I was selected at every single one.
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I think our flight to Orlando was the only one people were there for, we had a full flight. I was curious how the kids would do and was dreading being that family that has their kids screaming the whole damn time but alas turns out my kids are pretty awesome and they loved every minute of it. They especially loved the turbulence and could not stop giggling at it.
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All smiles and ready to fly!


We Arrived to Orlando on time and we were ready to get on the Magical Express get to Art of Animation and eat some dinner as it was about 5pm at this point. We made our way through the airport and found where we needed to be to board the Magical Express. Once we got there and got scanned in it was 30-40 minutes before we were on the bus. For whatever reason this seemed like it took way longer than it should. Could just be my inexperience with it but it was hot in the waiting area (I think it was 30 degrees when we left Indy and 80 when we arrived in Orlando) and we were all getting hungry. The bus ride was nice though, my son loved sitting in the front row and looking out the front of the bus on the ride. My daughter Millie (yes named after what you're thinking) was indifferent and just fell asleep for a short bit. We made it to the resort though and it was much shorter than the 17 hours of hell from the year before and we were happy with that.
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Welcome to Art of Animation! Note the dark clouds...


We decided to just head right in to Landscape of Flavors and get food before doing anything else. Did you pay attention to the last picture? Those dark clouds meant lots of rain and some storms. This also meant that everyone staying at the resort decided to head back early and eat there. It took us about an hour to get food so some time around 7 we ate. We were a bit grumpy but oo well things happen. After this I went to get our room number since I couldnt seem to find it through the online check in. We were in the furthest possible building away in the Little Mermaid rooms. This wasn't an issue for me I knew how far it was but at the time we hadn't got our rental stroller yet and it was pouring down rain. We begrudgingly made our way to the room through the heavy rain. When we arrived we were absolutely thrilled to find out that our bags that were to be delivered to the room hadn't made it yet. No worries though I had the foresight to pack extra cloths for the kids in case this happened but what I was too dumb to do was pack extra cloths for myself and the wife. I tried calling to see if there was an issue and when to expect them to arrive. 40 minutes on hold led to them telling me they had just arrived and would be out ASAP. It was another half hour plus before they made it. It was 9:30 when we received them. I tell you guys all of this not as me complaining or being mad at anyone but as a cautionary tale to plan to not have your bags for 5 or so hours if you have the resort take care of them. In all honesty it wouldn't have mattered had it not been raining so hard and I had packed the extra cloths in carry on.

Not off to the best start for the trip.

The room was clean, the beds were comfortable, and the kids loved the theme.

Stay tuned... the next report up will be Magic Kingdom a 12 hour non stop day with a 4 and 2 year old? what were we thinking? oo well we were thinking Magic Kingdom is amazing and we should spend as much time there as possible, tantrums and tired kids be damned.

On to a few bonus photos from the resort throughout the trip.

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby robbalvey » Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:17 pm

We absolutely LOVE this resort! In fact, this report makes me think we should go do a walk around there tonight as it's been a while since I've taken a lap around the property. I agree that Magical Express can take a while, but again, as an included service in the package it's probably still a bit easier than renting a car and having to figure out Orlando which can be a little confusing if you've never been. Honestly, a 30-40 minute wait doesn't sound that bad! We've waited at least an hour before for the Disneyland Paris version of the service...

And yeah, the resorts are fantastic when you can take them at your own pace, but when everyone is hunkered down due to weather...well, it is what it is. I'm sure the cast members were still hustling as fast as they could and even though sometimes take a while, I'm usually impressed with how many people they have to churn through. Bummed we missed you this trip! You'll have to make another visit out here!

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby Ape » Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:39 pm

There was a lot I should have added to this first part about the resort but I was doing it as I got breaks at work. Yeah I went back for one day lol. It was busy.

We really really liked it there. It was a bit too cold for the kids to try out any of the pools and we didn’t make it over to the cars area. There really isn’t anything I would change I would still use Magical Express and let them take care of the bags but I’ll be better prepared for it next time and there will be a next time. I want to do one of the week long trips where we take a day or two off from parks and visit Disney Springs and enjoy the resort more especially the pools. I loved the random Mine! mine! mine! From the Seaguls at 6am when I was picking up breakfast half asleep.

I’m not sure when the next trip will be but I can tell you for sure whatever year Tron opens we will be there! I’ve been dying to try out the one in Shanghai but can’t afford that big of a trip right now.

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby bigboy » Fri Feb 02, 2018 7:51 pm

On our last 2 trips, we waited less than 15 minutes for Magical Express, but it was much earlier in the day. We were early enough to run and spend time in the parks and our luggage was in our room by the time we returned. My wife and I did an adult trip in August and I sprung for a preferred room at Pop Century. We were in the building next to the food court and less than a 5 minute walk from the bus stops. I'm not lazy by any means and we spend plenty of time walking while we're there, but the time savings were totally worth the small extra expense. We managed to almost completely dodge the rain on that trip. We were either indoors or en route to a park and we only donned the ponchos for about an hour one afternoon.

Can't wait to hear more about your trip.

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby Ape » Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:46 pm

bert425 wrote:
Ape wrote:We just got back yesterday from our first legitimate vacation to Disney World where we stayed at a Disney resort and took advantage of everything they offer to make the trip easier. I will do a full trip report in this thread over the next week or so with lots of pictures.

If you haven't seen my posts before I have kids aged 4 and 2. We did this trip for them as I am the type that prefers the big coasters and parks like Cedar Point over a ton of theming like at WDW. I was left with my jaw on the ground many times and felt like a kid myself while at the parks. We stayed at Art of Animation and visited Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios. One park did leave me feeling underwhelmed but the other two I feel like I can't get enough of.

I hope to have the first part of the report up by the end of today and I hope whoever decides to read along enjoys what I have to offer.

Stay tuned...


can't wait to see your report!

I'm a little surprised you didn't do EPCOT, since the kiddos would likely have loved Nemo.. . but I'm sure they enjoyed lots of the animals at AK.

looking forwards to the pics!


I admittedly don’t know a whole lot about EPCOT and we deicided to leave that one off this trip. Had I done basic research I would have taken the kids there because of Frozen Ever Afer and them being obsessed with the movie

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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby Nrthwnd » Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:55 pm

^ Wait till Ratatouille opens in France, at EPCOT. Then take your kids. :wink:
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The "Ratatouille" attraction in EPCOT, will look something like this. (o: This is the original, in WD Studios, Paris.
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Re: Ape Family Vacation WDW Jan 2018

Postby ThemeParkJunkie51290 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:50 pm

Nice report so far! I've never stayed at a Disney resort, but I'm sure they're great. I can't wait for the other pics! =)
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