I’m home! My Disney World vacation has come and gone, and I write this from my cozy bed in a house surrounded by the frigid winds of a Canadian October.
I am so very happy to be back in Toronto! Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed my holiday (more on this in a moment), but I am a proud, self-professed homebody, and there is nothing quite like using your own shower, sleeping in your own bed and having all your favourite amenities so close and easily accessible. A week vacation was just long enough to make me eager to return home to everything (and everyone) that is so familiar and so well loved and appreciated.
But, of course, I’m overjoyed that I finally got the chance to visit a place I have always dreamed of going to, with my amazing family! We had such a great time and every aspect of Disney World lived up to our (admittedly, very high) expectations! It’s all a bit of a blur because so many things happened and it already feels like a lifetime ago, but here are some of the highlights of the trip:
~ The Magic Kingdom ~ Just in general. This park is absolutely incredible and so detailed and authentic. Every single ride is constructed with such care and is so unique – my personal favourites are definitely Pirates of the Caribbean, which features a few incredibly lifelike mannequins of Johnny Depp that move and talk so perfectly, and The Haunted Mansion, which is just so Victorian and gothic and very realistic! I could go on these rides all day and never be bored or take in every detail! The Magic Kingdom also has some of the best places to eat (again, more on this below) and the architecture is larger than life and so fairytale-like (fittingly)! The castle is gorgeous, and the various firework shows and parades really emphasize the fantastical quality of the park! It is just like being in your favourite Disney movie!
~ The Tower of Terror ~ For those who are looking for a bit more mature entertainment, this had to be my favourite ride of the whole trip! It was incredible and terrifying and exhilarating! The décor of the Hollywood Tower Hotel was ridiculously lush and lavish and antique, and the ride itself is so intricate and so much more than any DropZone type ride I’ve ever experienced! This was the highlight of the Hollywood Studios park, most definitely.
~ The Canadian Exhibit at Epcot ~ This was actually pretty accurate and I learned a thing or two about my own country. It was nice to see Canada represented and appreciated in such a huge park, full of so many different and famous cultures!
~ Meeting my beloved characters. ~ I got to meet basically every princess while I was in the Magic Kingdom, from Ariel to Elsa and with a pixie known as Tink in between! Even the characters that I didn’t get to see personally, like Rapunzel for example, were featured in the Festival of Fantasy parade, so I didn’t feel like I missed out on getting to see anyone! My family and I even got the chance to meet Mickey – there was only a 5 minute wait when we got to his theatre one night, and so we simply had to go in! He was beyond friendly and so adorable! He was genuinely excited to see us there, as if we were old friends!
The best part of the trip was meeting two of my all-time favourite Disney characters, though…the one and only Belle, and her charming (although a tad self-absorbed) suitor Gaston. I honestly did not expect to get a chance to meet Belle – when I went to Disneyland Paris, she wasn’t even there, and although I knew that Disney World featured a replica of her cottage from the film, I didn’t think she would actually be in it! Well, she was…when my family and I entered for the Enchanted Tales with Belle attraction, she appeared almost out of nowhere and I got to chat with her (She called me beautiful!) and basically become a child all over again. Despite the fact that this woman calling herself Belle was probably the same age as me, I truly found myself believing that she was my favourite princess and childhood idol and, I admit, I almost started to cry when I saw her. It was overwhelming and really magical, and everyone in my family felt like a kid in front of her.
Gaston was definitely the best character we met, however. He was just out of this world amazing and totally in character! He had a hilarious conversation with my brother about his muscles and how good-looking they both are (a conversation that definitely went straight to my brother’s head), and he was so flirtatious and dashing with me and my mom! We even had a chance to eat in his tavern, right there in the middle of the Magic Kingdom, and the food was so authentic, especially the massive, manly pork shanks! From meeting Gaston outside to sitting in his restaurant, I truly felt like I was tucked inside my favourite Disney locale!
~ Wishing upon a * ~ There’s nothing quite like watching the fireworks cascading around the castle in the Magic Kingdom. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen anything so beautiful and so breathtaking. It is truly magical to make that wish, to think about all your dreams, in the one place on Earth where dreams really seem to come true! It just felt so romantic and I felt like a part of this wave of hope and optimism. It seems like nothing can go wrong in the Magic Kingdom, and I’d love to hold onto that feeling forever!
So, there you have it – a little review of my time in Disney World! It did not disappoint, and it was all that I hoped it would be after years of planning this vacation!
With a Full Heart,
Girl with a Green Heart