My parents were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary recently and what better way to celebrate than at Disney. I grew up as a child in Florida and some of my fondest memories were our family trips to Disney World. So for me, planning a family get together at a magical kingdom was quite the thrill. And a magical week was had by all.
In this post I will be writing about our arrival at Walt Disney World, The Boardwalk Inn, Downtown Disney and Epcot.
We arrived on a clear, sunny day and when I spotted the entrance, I felt like a kid again and couldn’t help but smile.
There are several Walt Disney World Resorts to choose from and our destination this visit was to the beautiful Boardwalk Inn. This waterfront resort has the feel of an early 1900’s Atlantic City boardwalk and there are countless entertainment and dining options right at the resort. We loved the boardwalk idea as our children are older and would enjoy walking the boardwalk each evening when we returned from the Disney Parks. I highly recommend dining at Kouzzina by Cat Cora which is right along the boardwalk. They serve some of the best American, Greek and Mediterranean Cuisine I have ever tasted and are open for breakfast and dinner, reservations accepted and recommended.
We spent our first day at Downtown Disney and upon arrival the first attraction spotted was the awesome Characters in Flight. This hand-painted helium balloon is covered with classic flying Disney characters from one of my favorites, Peter Pan and Tinker Bell, to Dumbo, Buzz Lightyear and more. For 8 to 10 minutes the balloon ascends 400 feet in the air as you experience a breathtaking 360-degree view of Downtown Disney and guests on board will be treated to stunning views up to 10 miles away.
Disney Quest is an indoor interactive theme park at Downtown Disney that offers 5 floors of fun including 3D encounters and classic video games. Kids and teens could spend hours in this interactive theme park while the adults peruse the quaint shops and have some down time.
The House of Blues is another highly recommended restaurant. They offer live music, great food and special events. Visitors of all ages can kick back, relax and enjoy some live tunes and delicious eats. Reservations are accepted and recommended.
Our second day at Walt Disney World was spent at Epcot. I adore Epcot and have visited this Disney Park for many years. But first I just have to mention our stop for breakfast this morning as it was my first time eating at this restaurant. Ohana! I love Ohana and can’t wait to return. The buffet/family style food was incredible. Mounds of food was brought out to our table – several times. The character dining was so much fun and the Polynesian atmosphere was dreamy. Again, reservations accepted and highly recommended.
As we entered Epcot, our party of 13 all wanted to do something different – some Future World and some World Showcase. I planned to do it all and I definitely was not missing out on the culture and cuisine of 11 countries!
My first ride was Spaceship Earth in Future World which is great for all ages. Here you take a ride through time and see the landmark moments that made today’s communications technology possible.
Next – Test Track presented by Chevrolet! On this ride you will design a virtual concept vehicle and go for a high-speed spin that’s creative and thrilling. With peak speeds of 65 mph, Test Track is a thriller ride you will want to do again and again!
Some other rides and activities in Future World that we experienced and enjoyed which are not to be missed:
Now onto World Showcase.
There are 11 countries in World Showcase: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, The United States, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom and Canada. I absolutely love touring the international pavilions. All countries have spectacular foods to eat, great shops and some of the countries even have rides for all ages. Some of my favorite countries in World Showcase where I could spend hours (just ask any of my family members) are Norway, Germany, Italy, Japan, Morocco, and United Kingdom.
While at Epcot we celebrated my parents 50th anniversary and dined at United Kingdom’s Rose & Crown. The service and cuisine were fabulous and a memorable evening was had by all.
To top the special evening off, after dinner we watched llumiNations: Reflections of Earth. This stunning fireworks show at World Showcase was the most spectacular fireworks display I have ever seen. It truly gave me goosebumps and brought tears to my eyes and I felt blessed to be experiencing this event together with my family on our special occasion.
The continuation of our Walt Disney World Adventure will continue in A Magical Family Celebration at Walt Disney World – Part II.