Friday, May 27, 2016

Animal Kingdom

We decided to use our last pre-blackout Disney Day to explore a park we've never been to before: Animal Kingdom. To be honest, we were pretty tired from the day before and the sun was just brutally hot (needless to say, we're not exactly weeping that we won't be able to visit Disney all summer), so Eric and I were dragging a bit, but we still had a fun day.

Animal Kingdom!

Surprises around every corner. And such.

Ellie loves to check out the maps! Also, she's rocking new sunglasses that flip open and closed. They were a hit!

Ellie had been asking to meet Pocahontas, so that was the first stop on our itinerary. Then, we stopped in to meet Russell and Dug from "Up."

Ellie and Pocahontas

The "Up" folks!

Then, it was off to use a FastPass for the Lion King show, which was very high energy!

The Lion King show

Ellie watching the show

By then the kids were jonesing for some animals. Unfortunately, in our FastPass-booking, we didn't grab one for the safari, which seemed to be the best way to see lots of animals. And considering it was boasting 85-minute wait times, that did not seem to be on our agenda for the day. We hoped the train out to the petting zoo would suffice. I'm not sure it really quenched their thirst for animal-watching, but they did enjoy the train ride.

Family on the train

Petting zoo

After returning to the main park we decided to stop for some BBQ lunch. Then, Ellie wanted to dance to some live music!

Go, Ellie!

VIDEO: Ellie dancing!

Next, we used up another FastPass, this time to meet Mickey and Minnie. This was the highlight of the day! What a great interaction! The kids just ate it up. Ellie hugged Minnie for what seemed like forever, and then Minnie "commented" on Ellie's dress and laughed at her glasses. E.J. gave Mickey a huge hug and then they danced. It was just the sweetest!

Ellie and Minnie

Happy E.J.!

They loved it!

The whole bunch

After that, Ellie wanted to go to Dinosaur Land, so we went to check that out. We rode the dinosaur version of Magic Kingdom's Dumbo ride, and the kids enjoyed that. Then, we let them spend some time running around underneath the giant dinosaur figure. Ellie also liked the nearby funhouse mirrors!

Riding the dinosaurs

Photo op!

Fun with mirrors

Taking a break in the shade under the big dinosaur

By that point, we felt we had done just about all we wanted to do for the day, so we wrapped things up and headed back to Jacksonville. Until we meet again, Disney World!

Another fun day!

To view all of our pictures from Animal Kingdom, click here.

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