Mini-trip planned for Spring Break!!
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|Tue, 07-16-2013 - 5:07pm|
Well, after just a few weeks ago saying it would be YEARS before we went back to WDW... a rather substantial mini-trip has evolved for next March. It started out innocently enough... but it always seems that when I try to plan "just a little" Disney... it ends up turning into a LOT of Disney, lol!
We usually ("we" being the kids and myself) go down to Florida for Spring Break to visit my parents. Quite often, we fly into or out of Orlando, since it's a lot cheaper than Ft. Myers, and we can get a direct flight. So this becomes an easy way to try to slip in a mini-trip. Well, one of the things I was a little disappointed that we didn't get to do on our trip in April was meet Stitch, since Owen is a big fan. At one point, I had booked an Ohana breakfast, but cancelled it a few weeks later after deciding it would be too hard to get over to Poly (from YC) for such an early ADR. (This is when I still assumed we'd be making RD every morning, so such things mattered, ha!) It looked like we would have two different chances to meet him in the park, so we decided to do that instead. Well, neither time panned out. He was on the schedule both days, but never appeared.
So... I started thinking that if we flew back out of MCO next March, that maybe we could get a really late breakfast ADR at Ohana and just drive up from Naples early that morning, have breakfast, then fly back in the afternoon. Maybe my parents would even come up there with us. Or... maybe we should just drive up the night before. Lily had been wanting to stay at AoA since it opened, and a suite would easily hold all 5 of us. But... I've mentioned before that I HATE single night hotel stays, it just doesn't seem worth it. Might be asking too much for my parents to come up for the whole weekend though... hmm.
Meanwhile, I had also been exploring the possibility of adding a trip on the beginning of the week to visit the Kennedy Space Center (in Cocoa Beach) and had even convinced DH to come for that part (and fly home as we were driving down to Naples.) Maybe we could do the breakfast on the morning that he left, since he would need to fly out of MCO anyway, then we could drive on down to Naples and not have to worry about coordinating any plans for travel with my parents (since they can be very fickle about such things)
Or maybe, we could still spend a night at AoA, afterall, DH was okay with being gone Sat-Wed, and we didn't need THAT much time in Cocoa Beach. Maybe we could even do two nights there, and the other 2 nights in CB. But then I started looking at Disney's room rates. Nearly $500/night for a Lion King Suite??? (Lily had no interest in a LM room) We could probably stay in a Deluxe for about the same. I knew Lily had been wanting to stay there forever, but I just couldn't swallow it.
So, I was kind of at a loss for a few days, and thought I should just scrap the whole idea. Or maybe try a Mod, or just stay at Pop and tell DH to deal with it. (He doesn't like the Value Resorts, I was hoping I could pass AoA off as something different, having the suites) Or maybe go back to just doing the breakfast on our way out of town. But then I had an idea.
I had always been curious about DVC rentals, but always afraid to try it for some reason. Kind of on a whim, I put in a request for AKL, not really expecting it to be availible, being spring break week. Oh, and the minimum number of nights I could request was 3...the most I had even considered up to now was 2, though based on the point calculations it would still be cheaper than two nights at AoA. (March 21-24) But it probably wasn't going to work out anyway, right??
Well, as you can probably guess, we ended up getting it!! So... my simple little breakfast at Ohana had turned into a 3-night stay at a Deluxe resort. But this was going to be a simple, relaxing NON-PARK trip. Just swim, watch the animals, eat at all the yummy AKL restaurants that we don't get to very often because it's so far from everything.
I was cool with this plan, until one night a bit later, and I starting thinking how much we didn't get to do at AK in April. Actually, the only things I got to do were Triceratop Spin, the Safari, and Rafiki's Planet Watch - a gross injustice considering how much cool stuff is at the park. So... WHY were we planning to spend 2 whole days being 5 minutes from the park, and NOT go there??? Well, I haven't actually bought the park tickets yet, but that's now the plan. One day at the resort, and one day at the park. That's IT - I'm not going any farther, lol!
Oh, and we'll somehow have to get there Friday night, instead of Saturday. Lily has school on Friday, and I've been considering going back to work this year (if I do, I'd probably have work on Friday as well)... but we'll have to manage an afternoon/evening flight somehow. I'm waiting for SW to release their fares for that week - so far the other airlines are around $600 per person, round-trip - YIKES!!! Need some major pixie-dust from SW, lol!
I hadn't really mentioned much of this to DH until it was already booked, fortunately he seemed fine with it. I was worried it would seem like too much Disney, too soon to him, but if he thinks that it is, he hasn't said so. I'm actually wondering if this isn't a better way for us to "do Disney" - instead of one BIG trip every few years, do one mini-trip every year and just focus on one park. If we didn't fly down there every spring to visit my parents anyway, it wouldn't be practical. But since we do, maybe we should be taking advantage of the location more. It will be interesting to see how this one goes anyway.
And no, Lily STILL isn't getting to stay at AoA, which has now been dangled in front of her TWICE... but I think she's still excited about AKL, especially now that we are going to the park too.
At first I had planned on having a car, since we'll need it to go to Cocoa Beach and then on to Naples, but now I think we will just rent one from the Car Care Center the morning we leave, since it's a lot cheaper to do it that way. So we'll have to take DME from the airport afterall. And I think we are going to skip the DP for the first time - the numbers just don't work out for such a short trip. We'll still do a lot of TS ADRs I'm sure, but I'm thinking about trying to slip in a CS or two and see if DH does okay with it, afterall he liked eating lunch from the snack stands in Epcot, so who knows. This will definitely be a very different trip! I can't make our ADRs until September, but my tentative list includes Boma, Sanaa, Jiko, Ohana, and maybe Yak&Yeti.