Wednesday, December 14, 2016

{WDW Day 3} Animal Kingdom & Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party

Friday morning we were off to Animal Kingdom for the day!

Love, love, love all the Christmas trees Disney puts up! Each one so unique to the specific park!

First sighting of the tree of life!

We had an Extra Magic Hour that day, so we grabbed coffee and made our way over to Expedition Everest and walked right on! Other than Dinosaur (which was closed down), this is Animal Kingdom's only roller coaster type ride, so it has big wait times. Paul and I each got to ride it with Lane...and we all LOVED it!! It quickly became all of our new favorite ride!!

After riding that, it was time for our first fast pass for Kilimanjaro Safaris! You get in a bus and ride around a safari and see lots of animals! We all enjoyed this ride!!

After the safari ride, we rode the Wilderness Train out to Rafiki's Planet Watch! 

There we got to meet Rafiki

A little photo pass fun...

Our second FastPass was for Everest, so we all got to ride again!! 

Lane and Paul near the front!

We had lunch reservations at Tusker House. It was a character dinner and pretty decent food!

It happened to be Mickey's birthday that day, so we all signed his birthday card!

Baloo and King Louie!

Right after lunch we watched the Festival of the Lion King! It's a broadwayish type show was amazing!! We all loved it!

Then we ventured over to the other side of the park and hit up Dinoland...

 and watched the other musical there...Nemo...again, too cute!!

Lane really wanted to ride the rapid ride, but it was a little cool out and Paul and I definitely did not want to ride he rode it himself!

Around 5 we decided to head out...we had to get over to Magic Kingdom, so on our way out we met Russell from Up...

and took some more Photo Pass pictures!!

On select nights in November and December they have a Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party! This is a special ticketed event. After lots of research, and finding out we'd be at Disney on a party night, we decided to purchase tickets! I heard that this was not to be missed! All the event activities start at 7, but your ticket gets you in at 4! Also, the Magic Kingdom itself closes at 4, so if you don't have a ticket to the party you have to leave! We didn't get there quite as early as i'd hope to, but we still had a great time!
Once you get there, they usher party goers through a special entrance with fun photo opts and handout these huge sugar cookies!

All Levi had been talking about was wanting to meet Nick and Judy Hops from Zootopia! A few weeks before we left, Disney released "special guests" that would be out during the party and wouldn't you know that these two were going to be there!! Levi was pumped! So first thing we did was go find those two! Let me just say that this was our 3rd Disney trip and we've met ALOT of characters on those trips, and this was BY FAR the longest character line I've ever stood through!! Almost TWO hours! Not kidding...but seeing Levi interact with them (and Lane of course) was priceless and well worth it!

The line was so long that I was afraid that if we all waited we'd miss the Christmas parade! So I sent Paul to get us seats for the BEST parade Disney has!!! Right when we were done, we went to meet Paul, grabbed a churro or two while we waited, and got ready for the parade!!

I seriously loved everything about this parade!! SO magical!!

We've never seen the Wreck it Ralph characters in the parks, so we were excited to see them! 

and of course it ended with Santa!

Right after the parade it was time for "A Frozen Holiday Wish" show and the "Holiday Wishes Fireworks"! Both amazing!! The castle anytime is pretty magical but at Christmastime its something else!!

At the very end of the fireworks it turns into an ice castle...
and snow starts falling all over Main Street! That Disney magic!

By that time it was super later and even though we could have stayed longer we called it a night! If you do ever get a chance to go to the Christmas party, I'd try and not do another park that was a little much to do a park and then the party all night!! But we still had fun!

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