My Disney World FAVES – 2017

We went to Disney World in December for our 7th trip and I already want to plan our next trip back! We only spent 3 days in the park this trip so I didn’t get to do everything I wanted to but it was an amazing time nonetheless!

My favorite things at Disney World! 2017 Edition!

I had to add a date to the post because I feel like my favorite things change from year to year especially as they add new attractions and areas in the parks! This was our first time visiting Pandora at Animal Kingdom and it did not disappoint! I can’t wait to see what’s to come with the Toy Story and Star Wars areas coming this year and next.

The main thing we didn’t get to do was experience Pandora and Animal Kingdom at night {sad emoji here}. Last year I LOVED the Tree of Life Awakenings but Rivers of Light wasn’t open yet so I really wanted to see that. I’ve also heard Pandora is amazing at night so I’ll just have to wait for both those during our next trip!

Here are my top 5 things at Disney World as of right now!

Avatar Flight of Passage – Animal Kingdom

I avoided everything I could regarding Pandora before we went because I wanted to be surprised. I didn’t know anything about this ride except the name when we went on it and I highly recommend doing the same if you can! Without spoiling anything, this is by far my favorite ride at any park right now. If you haven’t been on it, scroll down now to skip the details!

Avatar Flight of Passage was my favorite ride!

I thought the ride was going to be a simulator but I had no idea it was similar to Soarin’ and was not prepared for the amazing details they thought of. When our flight woman told us we would see spots and feel tickling in our stomach, I laughed in my head and thought it was cool that they said something like that – AND THEN BOTH THOSE THINGS HAPPENED!! It’s funny but that was such an amazing touch and none of us saw how the wall came down or anything.

We ended up waiting just under 2 hours for the ride and we got to the park 30 minutes before “official” opening. It was open already and everyone was basically going to this line. We all agreed that the ride was totally worth the wait!

Happily Ever After Fireworks – Magic Kingdom

The fireworks show will always make my list of favorites at Disney World as there is just nothing like it anywhere else. Disney knows how to transport you to what seems like a whole other world and take your breath away!

There is nothing like fireworks at Magic Kingdom!

Funny story with our firework experience this year. My in laws got a spot about an hour before the show and we met them 30 minutes before since there were 8 of us. My sister and I decided we had time to get ice cream beforehand and ended up heading back 15 minutes before the show started…so we thought.

The previous 2 trips we were at Disney one week earlier so I didn’t realize the crowd difference this year until this exact moment. They had main street blocked so we couldn’t walk the way we had walked before. We tried going around and were pushing through the crowds but got to a point that the people were standing so close that there was no moving at all. Everyone was literally touching the people around them and there was no room for walking anywhere. We backtracked and found a way to get to the general area but that took a good amount of time and one worker didn’t want to let us get through.

We got to the area where our family was but there were WAY more people so we couldn’t figure out where everyone was. I started screaming my husband’s name and thankfully he was on the lookout and yelled for us. We were so excited and a worker who heard us said “That literally never happens. People never get reunited when this happens for fireworks.” We handed out ice cream and fireworks started 30 seconds later. This probably counts as one of the most stressful moments of my life and I was so grateful that we made it back to enjoy fireworks with everyone and our ice cream. #IceCreamIsAlwaysAPriority

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – Magic Kingdom 

The mine train went to the top of my ride list when it opened in 2014 and has remained there! I had hoped that Pandora might cut down on the wait times a little but it looks like they are staying strong.

We ended up waiting for the front row at the Christmas party and it was so much more fun in the front row! I recommend waiting for the front at least once – well worth the few extra minutes!

This is one of my favorite pictures from our trip! This was my sister in law’s first time on the trip and she doesn’t exactly love roller coasters but she was so brave and had fun! Can you pick her out??

The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is such a fun ride!

Also, yes we are those people who have matching shirts when we go (makes for way nicer pictures and makes it easy to spot people in crowds). And we are the crazies who make crazy faces for the ride photos – especially when we get them all with Photo Pass!

Lapu Lapu Drinks – Tambu Lounge at Polynesian Village Resort

A couple years ago we started a new tradition of visiting the Tambu Lounge at the Polynesian Village Resort and I’m still loving it. Reasons it’s the perfect stop: 1. The Polynesian Village Resort is BEAUTIFUL – the grounds, the lobby, the decor – I love it all. 2. They serve very tasty drinks in real pineapples! 3. It’s a perfect break while visiting Magic Kingdom or heading to Magic Kingdom from another park.

You can take the monorail to/from Magic Kingdom and the Polynesian is also walking distance from the Transportation Center so it’s pretty easy to get to. Tambu also has other yummy drink options and they have some appetizers if you are there in the late afternoon. This was the first time my in laws joined on our new tradition and they loved it!

Lapu Lapu drinks from the Tambu Lounge at the Polynesian Village Resort!  Tasty drinks in a pineapple!

Preferred Rooms at All Star Resorts 

Our first several trips we stayed at one of the All Star properties to save on cost and I can remember getting back so late at night with tired feet and having to walk another mile to our room. In 2016, we had a business class room at Coronado Springs so it was towards the front and it was life changing to be so close to the buses.

This year we opted for Preferred rooms at All Star Music and it’s worth every single penny for the extra charge over the standard rooms. Getting back at night an having a short walk was the best gift we could give our feet.

If you have a dining plan, you also get a free mug to use at the hotel so it’s very convenient to be so close to the dining area. It was also helpful so that we could eat breakfast, enjoy our coffee and then run our mugs back to the room. I saw lots of other people carrying theirs through the parks and can be used for water but we opt for a plastic water bottle and refill that during the day rather than carrying the mugs.

These were my favorites for 2017 and I’m sure it’s going to be ever changing given all the exciting things to come! What are your favorite things at Disney World??

 

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