I was worried the fifth day of our trip would be a struggle. After four full days, with one each at Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Hollywood Studios, I was concerned we’d be too tired for another day at Magic Kingdom, especially since we had tickets for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party that night, too. We only visited one half of the Magic Kingdom on our first day, and I couldn’t leave without Miss O experiencing the other half. I knew she was having fun, but our tired was starting to show and I wasn’t sure she’d make it.
Our final day of Disney World parks began with another early morning so we could take advantage of Extra Magic Hours. By this time, Miss O was a pro and was ready to catch the shuttle from our hotel, the Art of Animation Resort, bright and early. While in line the day before, a kind family gave us FastPasses for Hollywood Studios. Pixie Dust! We didn’t end up using them and they were still valid, so Miss O and I were ready to spread some Pixie Dust of our own and pass them on to another family in the Hollywood Studios shuttle line. It was such a great way to start our day!
I am so glad we got to Magic Kingdom early that day! This time we got there so early, we were held outside the gate and had plenty of time to put on sunscreen and have a little breakfast. We brought fruit and muffins from the Landscape of Flavors in the Art of Animation Resort. It was so nice to have a little picnic outside the main gate and we watched the crowed get bigger and bigger as we ate. It was nice to know we were near the front, but terrifying to know we might get squished on the way in.
Just as the kids were getting antsy, the gates opened and we were allowed in to Main Street. The kids were pros by now and very keen to have another day in the park, so they stayed right with us as we hustled in with the crowd. We opted not to get a stroller and I’m so glad we didn’t have to bother with it, especially at rope drops!
Because the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train was temporarily closed right at our FastPass+ time on our first day at Magic Kingdom, our plan for the second day was to get the grown-ups/Big Kids who didn’t get to go on it over there ASAP at rope drop. Miss O and I were all about repeating Peter Pan’s Flight, so we walked as quickly as we could over to the bridge. Miss O was only six, but she sure knew what hustle means! We were about six people back from the rope and right by the bridge that would take us past Merida’s meeting place and the castle, perfect placement for getting to classic Fantasyland quickly. I took the wait as an opportunity to get some photos of Miss O in front of the castle and a lovely woman offered to take a photo of both of us. More Pixie Dust!
Once the rope dropped, we headed over to classic FantasyLand, with a brief stop to see Cinderella’s wishing well and make a wish. We didn’t want to take too long, but we wanted to do a few things we didn’t get to do on the first day. It didn’t hurt because we were the first family on Peter Pan’s Flight that morning! That line grows to 90 minutes and more during the day, so I felt amazing achieving that.
When our pirate ship landed, Miss O wanted to do It’s a Small World again and how could I say no? There was no one in line! We still had 40-minutes before Merida started meeting guests, so we met up with the rest of our family at the teacups and went for a spin with Mr. A and Uncle B. We let Miss O and Mr. A spin the cup this time and their giggles were more than worth the dizziness.
We still had plenty of time, so we headed for Test Track, since that too was temporarily closed our first day. The line was pretty long, but moved quickly and took just the right amount of time. My sister-in-law and I enjoyed a brief moment of calm, just sitting on a bench watching the world go by. It was lovely. When Hubs, Uncle B, Miss O and Mr A were off the Test Track, we parted ways again, with Miss O and I getting a great spot in line for Merida while the rest of our group headed for Splash Mountain.
Merida was amazing and loved my Dunbroch Archery Team shirt so much so asked the PhotoPass photographer “why don’t we have those?” and asked her to get a picture of my shirt. That totally justified my fun Disney shirts and Miss O was delighted that I finally had my picture taken too.
With our final princess autograph obtained, we were all about exploring the other side of the Magic Kingdom, Frontierland and Adventureland. Our family was still in the queue for Splash Mountain, so we weren’t in any hurry. This provided an excellent opportunity to take the train, saving our feet and checking another classic Disney experience off our list.
Miss O loved it and spent the ride taking pics with my phone. She was rewarded at the Main Street station with a surprise appearance by Mary Poppins greeting everyone as we pulled in to the station. Miss O simultaneously lost her mind and became incredibly shy. She barely eeked out “hello,” but her smile gave her away.
I’ve never been a huge fan of Frontierland, probably because I don’t do Splash Mountain or Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and I really just can’t with the Country Bear Jamboree. It just does not do it for me at all. In the spirit of doing it all, we clomped in to the Jamboree and I prepared to watch Miss O have a good time. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on where you are with me on this one, the audio for the Jamboree wasn’t working properly and we could barely hear it. The poor cast member in there was working so hard to get it sorted, but to no avail. It was no great loss for me and Hubs admitted it may be time for that one to go into the vault.
We skipped over the rest of that area and headed through to Adventureland to board our Jungle Cruise. It’s just as much fun as I remember it and Miss O was all in. Well, she was until the shrunken heads which she pronounced “gross.”
After every cruise, one must get a snack, which I think is an actual Disney rule. We obeyed and went in search of the elusive Dole Whip. I’ve never seen Hubs so excited. He was finally sharing one of his favorite things with Miss O. Well, he had one and she had one. Let’s be real, he’s not sharing a Dole Whip. And yes, she loved it!
Now that Hub’s mission was accomplished, we got into an extremely short line for Aladdin’s Flying Carpets, which none of us had ever been on and yes, it’s basically the same as Dumbo, but I loved it and so did the kids. I loved that it’s the only ride Hubs, Miss O and I got to ride alone with my nephew, Mr. A, so it’s a special memory just for the four of us.
Our lunch reservation for the day was at the Jungle Navigation Co Ltd. Skipper Canteen, located in that same area, but it wasn’t quite time yet. We walked around the Swiss Family Robinson’s Tree House, which I really don’t think I’ve ever done and of course, we hit the Tiki, Tiki, Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Room for a quick show. I know it’s silly, but I love that show. I’m not sure Miss O feels she ever has to do that again, but I’m glad she saw it at least once.
The only thing left to do was one of the things I was looking forward to the most, Pirates of the Caribbean. Even though Miss O was six, she had already seen every Pirates of the Caribbean movie and landed deeply in love with Captain Jack Sparrow. When we told Miss O we were walking toward the ride, she literally stopped in her tracks, clutched at her heart and said “Captain…Jack…Sparrow.” I wasn’t sure if she’d make it to the ride or pass out from excitement before we even got there.
We had a FastPass+ starting at 11:00 AM, but we didn’t really need it. Miss O and Mr. A were giggling the whole way through the queue and practically jumped into the boat. We ended up squished four to a row, so thank goodness the kids are small. We started out and I got a little worried she might change her mind at the first skeleton. Just as I was mentally chiding myself for forgetting to offer the kids glow bracelets for the dark parts, I remembered the drop. I completely forgot about the little drop at the beginning and how the front row gets wet. I tucked my bag in closer, took off my sunglasses and prayed Miss O wouldn’t freak out. Fortunately, she was way more interested in playing find Captain Jack and loved everything about the ride.
After playing in the gift shop for a bit it was almost 1:00 PM and time for lunch. The restaurant was practically empty, and were seated more quickly than I would have thought for a Friday, but that’s one of the benefits of going at the end of August. I’d also never eaten at the Jungle Navigation Co. before, but it seemed to offer a good variety for our group of food allergies, vegetarians and meat eaters. When we agreed to get the dining plan, I knew we’d be doing table service for lunch so we’d all have a guaranteed place to sit down and take a break in the air conditioning and this was definitely a good place to do that. I had been warned that Disney portions were generous, but had not yet seen anything I felt was unreasonable. That is, until our food arrived. I ordered the gluten-free version of the Perkins Thai Noodles and for the first time could not finish my meal. I’m not even sure I made a dent in it. I just could not eat that whole heaping mound of food. The food was excellent, however, service was great and we were in and out in about an hour and a half.
Miss O, Hubs and I were going to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party the same night, but the rest of our family was going to park hop a bit instead. We opted to take a break mid-day and head back to the Art of Animation for some Big Blue Pool time and a nap to make sure Miss O would making it all night. We said good-bye to our family and headed toward Main Street for one final character visit with Tinker Bell.
When we entered the line, it was a 10-minute wait. Then the FastPass+ holders arrived and our wait grew to 20-minutes. Miss O was a trooper, though, and waited patiently for her turn. I’d never been in the Town Square Theater, let alone Pixie Hollow before, but it’s darling inside and totally worth the wait. We got our final character autograph on our banner and left the park just as the parade was coming down Main Street.
Our last day in the parks was bittersweet, to be sure, but we made so many memories by that point our hearts were full to bursting. Our trip wasn’t quite over yet, with one more day to explore Disney Springs before leaving on the Magical Express for home. Getting there early allowed us plenty of time to have great second day in the park and still get a break for more later that night. There were a few things I wish we’d done differently and, of course, I wish we’d had more time, but this trip was well worth the wait and I can’t wait to do it again!