Dreaming about going to Disney World my whole life and planning every last detail of our honeymoon for the past year had led to this: the moment I would finally get to cross the threshold into the Happiest Place on Earth. Oh, and Adam too. He was there and excited. He hadn’t been there in almost two decades. But it was nothing compared to how I was buzzing.
The anticipation was crazy! My smile couldn’t get any bigger and Adam was especially enjoying watching me freak out. The first moment of walking in was overwhelming and wonderful. It was similar to Disneyland, but with its own flair. And the castle was AMAZING. It was so tall and beautiful. It was such an incredible experience taking in all the sights, smells, and sounds of this new, fantastical place that was both familiar and foreign.
In hindsight, that day was absolutely magical. It was everything I had ever dreamed and imagined it would be. We rode many rides, utilizing the FastPass+ system so we never had to wait in line too long, ate delicious food, and just enjoyed the general merriment and magic of finally being married and on our Honeymoon.
Now, I’m passing this over to Adam so he can write a few words about his impressions of the day.
It truly was a fantastic day! I do agree that getting to see Mandi excitedly rush around the park to see it all was a lot of fun. The castle is also much taller in the Magic Kingdom. We didn’t realize it at the time, but having returned to Disneyland the following year, it was apparent that there were some noted differences.
Though there are certain rides that have residency in both the CA and FL parks, each one is presented with noted discrepancies between the versions. I think we liked both It’s a Small World and Pirates of the Caribbean in the CA park more, as there was just a little something extra with regard to the presentation on both attractions.
That said, the extra room provided to the FL park made it so that there was a new surprise around every corner. I hadn’t realized the last time I visited that there were multiple castles present in the Magic Kingdom. We got to see not only Sleeping Beauty’s castle as the main event, but also Belle’s castle near the Be Our Guest restaurant, Ariel’s castle near the Seven Dwarfs Mine train, and Rapunzel’s tower. The area near Rapunzel’s tower is responsible for one of my favorite photos from the trip. All in all, it was a fun first day to start our grand adventure.
This is Mandi again. The Rapunzel location Adam is talking about is actually a bathroom area, as you can see in the pictures above. It is the most delightful and beautiful bathroom in America! And at night, they bring out a Photopass photographer to take enchanting nighttime photos.
Photopass at Disney World was $200 and is absolutely worth it! Only one person per group needs to purchase it and all the photos you take with their photographers around the park, and the ride photos, link automatically to your Magic Band. It is a great way to get gorgeous, non-selfie photos without having to pester other guests. Plus, they sometimes sprinkle in a little Disney magic, as with the Tinkerbell photo below.
Leading up to our visit, I watched a lot of Disney Food Blog and even bought their Dining Guide to Disney World. Even with all that prep, I still wasn’t prepared for all the options available to us! I did have a couple reservations going in – we made about one dining reservation at a nice restaurant per day and then tried to be flexible with our other meals. We had the best breakfast of our entire trip (including the much more expensive Be Our Guest later in the trip) at Sleep Hollow – a little quick serve restaurant where they deliver on those famous Mickey Waffles. I loved them so much, I went and got another later in our trip.
Also a hit was our popcorn bucket, which we purchased for $10 and were able to bring back to the park the entire duration of our trip for $2 refills. That was our go-to snack when we wanted something light to get us through to our next meal. We also loved our drinks we got throughout the day and enjoyed a classic Dole Whip.
Side Note about the Dole Whip: This is sacrilege in Disney circles, but while I do enjoy it because it’s sugar, it’s definitely not my favorite Disney dessert. For some reason, we still end up getting at least one every trip. I think it’s a psychology thing.
On our first Magic Kingdom day, we ate at two restaurants: Pinocchio’s Village House and the Skipper Canteen. While Pinocchio’s Village House provided a fun atmosphere, the food was kinda meh. We got one of Adam’s favorite dishes, Chicken Parmesan, and it was nothing special, but Adam says he’d eat it again. The Skipper Canteen was AWESOME. We did eat toward the end of the night – in fact, we could hear the fireworks going off outside as we ate – and we were definitely hungry. The food did not disappoint. We got the Shu Mai Dumplings, “A Lot at Steak” Salad, and Perkins Thai Noodles. Everything was delicious and satisfying, plus we had a super fun skipper! It tied into the Jungle Cruise ride, which was just across the sidewalk, perfectly.
As much fun as eating was, the bulk of our day was spent exploring the park, shopping, and riding rides. The park was so huge, we didn’t get to see it all the first day! Fortunately, we had schedule two other park-hopper days that would lead us back to Magic Kingdom to spend more time there. As much as I would love to go into every detail of every moment of that first day, this post would be crazy long and there’s some fun in letting myself forget so I can go back and re-experience it all again on our next trip! Here are a few more pictures, though, that will sum up the fun we had. We stayed until past close, and even then the park was still buzzing. It really is quite obvious why they call it Magic Kingdom.