A World of Characters Disney Character Central Blog A World of Characters
A World of Characters A World of Characters
A World of Characters A World of Characters
A World of Characters A World of Characters
Special Report by Guest Writer Loren Javier - Walt Disney World Trip Report Sept 2010 Part Three
DisneyDan  Friday, October 22, 2010 11:53:35 AM

Hi all,

In this third part Loren talks about his day at Future World in EPCOT, and his “pub crawl” around some of the Resort Hotels on the Monorail system.

As with the last two entries, I will provide some notes and commentary along the way as I see appropriate.

Like Jon and I, Loren documents all his Disney adventures on Flickr, and his WDW set can be found here.

Part one of Loren’s report can be found here.

Part Two can be found here.

So here is part three! I hand over now to Loren…

The next day, we decided to focus on Epcot's Future World. We had an Extra Magic Hour (EMH) in the morning and we rushed right to Mission: Space to get a FastPass and then went to ride Test Track. The last time I was at Walt Disney World, they had closed World of Motion and were in the process of building this ride. I was curious to ride this the most because they're using the technology for Radiator Springs Racers in the upcoming Cars Land at Disney California Adventure. I absolutely loved it. While World of Motion was enjoyable, Test Track was a great wild ride. After having rode Test Track, I can't wait to see how Radiator Springs Racers turns out! We loved it so much that we had time to ride it again immediately after. And believe it or not, it was even more fun the second time.

From there we rode Mission: Space. I had heard lots of good things about it, even though they closed Horizons (one of my favourite Epcot attractions of old) to make way for it. I thought it was a really cool ride, although, due to the spinning, it made me fairly nauseous. It's so funny how I can do Tower of Terror all day long without feeling anything, but if it’s a spinning ride like the Tea Cups or Silly Symphony Swings, I can only ride it so much before I start feeling sick. But, a really neat experience overall. (Loren obviously rode the orange version for the full experience! I only ever rode this once, and didn't like the spinning either. Guest reaction was so negative when this opened back in 2003, they closed one side of it and installed what is now known as the Green mission. When I ride, I always ride Green now. It is exactly the same ride, but without the spinning effect, so it equates more to a simulator ride such as Star Tours. Sadly, despite this being a great ride, and the post-show area being quite cool, due to the bad press at the start, this ride rarely has long lines these days - Dan)

After Mission: Space, we went over to The Seas with Nemo & Friends. I really love this pavilion because a) I love "Finding Nemo" and b) I love aquariums. The majority of our planet is covered in water and there's so little we know about what goes on below. The first attraction is the clam mobile ride that is something akin to our "Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage", but without getting into a submarine. While I love the submarine voyage at the Original Park, I do like the clam mobile ride because I like the queue area (albeit LONG queue area) and there was absolutely no line. I also like the animation against the real life aquarium. The aquarium itself is quite wonderful and I enjoyed watching the feeding. There's something I love about seeing Rays and watching them feed was such an amazing treat.

From The Seas it was off to the Imagination! pavilion. I was very excited to go here because "Journey Into Imagination" was one of my favourite things the last time I was at Epcot. Imagine my surprise (well I wasn't really surprised because I had read about this before) when I saw that my beloved Dreamfinder was replaced by Eric Idle's Dr. Nigel Channing. While I thought the ride was enjoyable, I really don't know why they thought this was better than what was originally there. Although given what I've read where, at one point, they banished even Figment from the attraction, I'd much rather have this amalgam. At the end of the ride, I of course, had to stock up on Figment merchandise. 

From Imagination! we headed over to the Land to explore its attractions and to have lunch. We all got food at Sunshine Seasons and thought the food was absolutely delicious. I had one of the Asian noodle dishes and can tell you that, while this was quick serve, it was 100 times better than any food we have at Disneyland. In fact we would find that the food throughout Walt Disney World is VASTLY SUPERIOR to anything at Disneyland. Right now every time I eat at Disneyland it now tastes like Styrofoam and cardboard for all it matters. After lunching, we went on the Living with the Land boat ride which is exactly as I remember it. I always remember loving seeing the agriculture of the future (or not so near future since these techniques, while futuristic, are already being employed). Anyway, always a very interesting ride and I'm glad that it was not sacrificed over the years. Actually, I couldn't bring myself to ride Soarin' because it’s taken the place of another one of my favourite attractions when I was younger - Kitchen Kabaret. It just made me sad knowing that I wouldn't be able to see it there. We did watch the Circle of Life film which was simple and enjoyable and a great way to incorporate Disney characters into a pavilion that, while I love it, could potentially be dry for younger guests.

After the Land it was off to Spaceship Earth. This was just a fantastic dark ride into the world history. Dame Judi Dench's narration is just perfect for the ride. The incorporation of the Project Tomorrow "Choose Your Own Future" interactivity at the end of the ride fit in great. We have this in Innoventions at the Original Park, but it seems to work much better in the context of Spaceship Earth. Kurt asked me though what happened before when we came down from the finale scene of Spaceship Earth and, truth be told, I cannot remember. I seem to recall just riding down in darkness to narration, but I might be totally wrong. Whatever the case, Spaceship Earth was a great ride. (They refurb’d this ride not too long ago actually, as the onboard video is relatively new (within about two years), and it certainly made a massive difference. Jeremy Irons used to narrate before, and you’re quite right, you used to just descend back, past some neon lights and then into the loading area while listening to his closing commentary. The scenes have been vastly improved in the ride, and have turned it from being old and worn into something quite fresh and interesting (exciting isn’t the word). The post-show area is fantastic now and well worth a visit. Before there was literally nothing, well, there may have been, but it was such a long time ago I never recall seeing anything but unused space there - Dan)

Then, from Spaceship Earth, it was off to the final pavilion in Future World - Universe of Energy. This pavilion, with Ellen's Energy Adventure, was exactly the same as I remembered it from when I was last there in 1998. It is still a highly enjoyable attraction and still works. What's interesting to me though, is that they filmed this when Ellen DeGeneres was well known with her sitcom. This was before she came out. So flash forward several years and, not only is Ellen DeGeneres still relevant, she is bigger than she's ever been. Anyway Ellen's quirky humour, I don't think, can go out of style. :)

After Universe of Energy, we did some shopping at Mouse Gear and then Kurt and I repeated a couple of attractions. We didn't end up exploring Innoventions, probably because the word "Innoventions" leaves such a bad taste in your mouth at the Original Park. We walked through it and it definitely seemed more cohesive, but, I think our fear of the one at the Original Park prevented us from truly exploring. One thing though that I MUST recommend is Club Cool because you can drink sodas from around the world all day long...FOR FREE! It was very tasty and refreshing on a hot afternoon. (This was formerly known as the Ice Cool Station, and actually used to be a lot better. To get into it you entered through what looked like an igloo, and it had a neat looking Arctic terrain vehicle outside. You then ventured deep into the underground Arctic caverns and discovered the Ice Cool Station at the end. The actual store remains fairly similar, but now you just enter through normal doors at the front, leaving the tunnel at the back blocked off never to be seen again! - Dan)

After leaving Epcot, Kurt and I did a Monorail Pub Crawl (of sorts). I learned about this while reading an article on activities to try around Walt Disney World. We took the Monorail over to the Ticket & Transportation Center and then over to the Contemporary Resort. We wanted to take a look at the Mary Blair mosaics and Kurt had heard that they served speciality Monorail cocktails. After marvelling at the Mary Blair mosaics (such an AMAZING achievement) and seeing the model of Rolly Crump's Tower of the Four Winds, we sat down at the lounge and ordered the Monorail Yellow cocktail (which was like a Pina Colada with orange juice). There was just something very special about sitting and having a Monorail cocktail while looking at this fantastic artwork. (Not a comment per se, more a question for Loren (and a hint for others) - did Kurt find the penny press machine that has the Peter Pan one in it? - Dan)

From the Contemporary we took the Monorail over to the Polynesian Resort. Having recently spent lots of time in Hawai'i, I was dying to see this classic resort hotel inspired, in part, by Hawaiian design. It was a beautiful hotel for sure, but was also loaded with so many people that it was hard to enjoy it. 'Ohana was a mad house filled with, what seemed like, the angriest tourists and the loudest screaming children. Where's the aloha people? After walking about a bit and checking out the Bou-Tiki (looking at merchandise is always good therapy for me), we settled at the Kona Cafe Sushi Bar which was great as we managed to get away from all the crazy people and have a nice, delicious meal. (I adore the Polynesian, and have eaten at ‘Ohana a couple of times for breakfast. I highly recommend it to everyone. It is basically a buffet brought to your table (“family style“), complete with Disney Characters, including Stitch, who is my favourite :) - Dan)

We didn't end up stopping at the Grand Floridian and finishing the Monorail Pub Crawl though, because it was getting late and I was unsure as to when the last Monorail would run back to Epcot where we were parked. Next time, I'll plan it out better as I do want to see this resort hotel.

In the next part of this trip report by Loren, he will talk about his day at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park.


Next Post Previous Post

Character Central

Register | Lost Password