Lots of photos today, and not an animal to be seen. We did a bit of park hopping, had a scrumptious lunch and ended up oohing and aahing at the Christmas lights.
The first thing we had to do was return the car. We’d picked it up from near the Magic Kingdom but it was more convenient to return it to the Dolphin as we planned to go to Hollywood studios afterwards and it’s an easy walk from the Dolphin. There were no problems dropping the car off and we walked straight through the Dolphin and out the back where I made Stephen pose for a photo.
We walked along the pretty pathway to the Studios and got a nice view of the Christmas tree next to the Sorcerer’s hat.
Then we got down to the serious business of having fun, with a little help from FP+. We did Tower of Terror, which is one of my favourite rides. I love the way you rise up out of the seat, as far as the restraint will allow, when you drop.
We needed a snack at this point so had iced coffees and shared a strawberry muffin while sitting on a bench chatting to another DVC member. We agreed that it’s the only way to stay. A small parade passed by while we were sitting there. Always something happening at Disney.
We then went on Star Tours, once on standby and once with FP+. We hadn’t tried it since the refit. We liked it much better and both rides were different. Great fun.
We also went on The Great Movie ride and got held up by a gangster. Who’d have thought it. Thanks to FP+, we also managed a go on the Toy Story ride. We’ve only done that once before, a few years ago. The queues for it are horrible and if you don’t get there early you can’t get a FP either so the new system worked well for us here. I beat Stephen, of course as I’m a far better shot *grin*
We were getting peckish for lunch by now and although there are plenty of places to eat in HS, there isn’t anywhere that we love. We did want to eat at Morocco though so we hopped on the launch and went over to Epcot.
Not necessarily that one. That’s a random launch that I snapped on the way back. Ours was Friendship 5 and it was lovely to just sit back and enjoy gliding across the water in the sunshine. Did I mention that the temps were in the 80s again today?
We went straight to Morocco and had a yummy lunch at the Tangierine café. I had the Vegetarian platter, which has things like hummus, tabouleh, olives, couscous and pita. Very, very tasty. Stephen had the chicken and lamb platter which was similar but with meat. I nicked some of his meat and swapped it for a falafel ball and my onions. Seemed fair. I was planning to take a photo but only remembered after we’d both got stuck in so I took this photo instead.
We decided to walk around a bit to see if we could fit in a dessert and also because I had somewhere else in mind for that. I’d been reading about School bread online for a while and thought it was about time I tried it to see if it was as nice as people were saying. We went to Norway to get some for me, plus a no sugar added dessert for Stephen, and coffee, and it was indeed delicious. Stephen liked his chocolate mousse too and I actually managed photos of them before they got attacked.
We did a bit of last-minute shopping around the World showcase as we probably won’t be coming back to Epcot this trip and then walked to the Boardwalk before deciding that maybe we’d get the launch back to the Studios instead of walking all the way.
We didn’t do much more once we got back as we were just killing time until it got dusk. We did go inside the Pirate thing, which was fun but then we sat on a bench and people watched for a while. Finally it was almost dark so we wandered over to the Streets of America to join the hordes of people who were already gathered there.
I don’t think we’ve been there for the switching on of the lights before so I’m glad we did so this time. It gradually gets darker and then there’s a fanfare before a short speech telling you the history of the lights. Then it starts to snow which is so magical even though you can see it’s just being blown out from the roof tops. Finally at the push of a button all the lights go on and it’s just amazing. You can’t describe how it feels to see it. It’s quite emotional – a feeling of pure joy to see such a pretty sight and so many people who are as blown away by it as you are. It’s pure Disney.
They’re static for a few minutes and then they play festive music and the lights dance. It’s a marvellous thing to see. you don’t know where to look first. We started off at the bottom of the street, standing beneath this.
The angels appeared to move their wings as if they were flying and the globe was slowly spinning. Further up the street was this. The red carousel was slowly spinning too.
We stopped to take photos as we walked slowly up the street, stopping to watch the lights as they danced and then advancing a little more to take more photos as they were static again.
Stephen insisted I include this shot so you could admire his new trainers as well as the pretty lights behind him.
The huge green tree of lights is there from last time we were here and is as lovely as before. People were queueing to have their photos taken in front of it but I managed to sneak a shot from in-between them.
One of the buildings had a display in the windows. You can just see it from the photo. It was constantly changing and we stood and watched it for a while. Just after I took this shot, a train appeared in the top right window and carried on through all the top windows and then down across the bottom ones from left to right. It looked really effective.
We walked down the side street too as that has a gorgeous canopy of lights all above it. At the very end of it was this.
In the same street was this display. I particularly liked that the window of the house had a fire effect in it so it looked as if the occupants of the house were maybe sitting in front of a roaring fire while the snow settled outside.
Once we’d seen everything we walked to the back and Stephen took a couple of shots of me. I quite like this one with the lights in the background.
We have a nice lunch planned for tomorrow. Can’t wait!