On my Birthday it was time to hit the road again and move resorts. We were technically staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge for our vacation. Staying at Port Orleans was only meant to be a one night thing. We ended up adding an extra day to our trip and needed a cheap alternative for a night, especially considering we were arriving mid-day and not staying an entire day. Animal Kingdom Lodge is a deluxe resort, even though it's on par with Wilderness Lodge (my absolute favorite Disney resort) and one of the cheapest, it is still a deluxe resort and even adding one more night would have been financially too much. I'm not a fan of resort hopping, but I have done it before (although at a value...but I just couldn't face that again) and knew it was a viable option for a cheaper night stay. After the fiasco of no elevators at Alligator Bayou, I was looking forward to a more comfortable surrounding. I may be poor, but deluxes work better for me and my social problems. I've debated the benefits of deluxes versus the others numerous times in my Disney Blog series, so no need to rehash, let's get to the pics (take your pick on my Disney Planning and Reviews Page HERE).
I'd driven the path using Google Map Street Views numerous times, but the sight of the entrance sign of any Disney resort is always a "ahh" moment!
Like a lot of the deluxe resorts, it's completely hidden from the parking lot:
but there is a nice (yet probably snake filled) walkway to the entrance:
Again, our room wasn't ready, but I did notice a craft behind the check-in counter:
Kate decided to wait it out, but I wanted to hit the Magic Kingdom again for a while, especially since it was my birthday and I'd never actually been in Disney on my actual B-day. It wasn't a Mickey's Not So Scary Party Night, but I think some people didn't get the memo:
Well, I guess as long as they were comfortable and/or happy, that is all that matters. I was extremely happy to get a good pic of the entrance sign for the first time:
and of course I had to climb up to the top of the train station for the customary beauty shot of Main Street looking toward the castle:
While I was up there, I decided to go ahead and take the train to New Fantasyland and actually managed to get a shot of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad in action:
The old Mickey's Toontown Fair section of the park, which is now where Dumbo lives, is very child oriented, but there is one stop of note for an adult, Big Top Souvenirs:
for my standard Disney breakfast, a red velvet cake pop:
but because I'm a regular on The Disney Food Blog, I was dying to try a Mickey Macaroon and I now have a brand new love! This one became the first of many for this trip.
Followed up by another tried and true usual, LaFou's Brew from Gaston's Tavern:
There was a clear sky for a short while, and what better way to capture it than at Cinderella's Castle:
my new MacBook wallpaper:
After lunch at Pecos Bill's (again), I tried to go to Tom Sawyer's Island for the first time since I was a kid, but people kept butting in front of me in line and I got pissed and walked off. Happy B-Day to me.
It ended up being a good thing because the rain was starting up again:
so I figured it was a good time to test zoom again at The Hall of Presidents. I'm still struggling with taking pictures through glass:
but the show pictures were getting better:
and even the non-zoom turned out pretty good too:
The sun came out again briefly (which is typical after sitting inside, but I was still grateful):
and I decided to try out one of the cake cups that everyone has been going on about (yes, I ate a LOT on this trip):
At least the first leg of the trip saw intermittent rain storms (versus the deluge at the back end of the trip), but watching the clouds roll back over the castle from the Peoplemover was a pretty sight:
I had the PERFECT seat for the parade, sat there for 30+ minutes, waited out a downpour:
the rain stopped five minutes before the parade, but 10 minutes later they announced the parade had been cancelled due to inclement weather. It rained the rest of the day:
Kate met up with me and after an early dinner at Tony's, we called it a night.
We finally got assigned a room at Animal Kingdom Lodge, but let's save that for Part 2.