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How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?


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  • [Question] How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

    I have been to WDW 3 times, but not since late 1980's.

    My new girlfriend and her 10 year old have wanted to go there since they were kids. I remember the vast spaces and the Southern sun, and "If You Had Wings" from Eastern Airlines.... They have no clue. We live near Holiday World in Santa Claus IN, a teeny-tiny theme park; that is their reference.

    We are renting a car and are leaving Saturday, February 2, driving direct (14 hours!) to a gifted stay at a resort in Orlando, staying to Saturday, February 9. The plan is to relax and regroup on Sunday. Then, on Monday February 4th visit Disney's Magic Kingdom. We have three "4 DAY (1 THEME PARK PER DAY)" adult tickets from UndercoverTourist. Then, plan is to visit Disney's Animal Kingdom on Tuesday, then Disney's Hollywood Studios on Wednesday, and then back to the Magic Kingdom on Thursday and Friday. Then check-out and drive home, crash on Sunday, and off to work on Monday.

    I am just a paying participant, and all I can do is make some inquiries as to advice, suggestions and how to focus the adventure on a 10 year old who loves animals, animated dragons (I have seen the new flying dragon on video!) and Cartoon Network(!) Has she abandoned Disney Channel? Yes, but she is still a kid. Her mom has some mobility issues, but is up for a few days of paced multi-mile hikes. Me, I am but a jaded 50 year old with a love for the tech and history of Walt and the other Imagineers.

    Meals will be cheap and easy, no travel or lodging issues, and will have a car. What advice can you offer?

    Thank you(!!!!)
    "If You Had Wings..."

  • #2
    Re: How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

    You got airmilles? They offer discounts and such, that might be a way to save a bit of dough also consider renting a DVC resort room (this is a bit dodgy but you can get middlemen/contracts to secure your transaction) this might be cheaper then staying outside of the property, you won't have to rent a car and won't have to waste money on parking. There are a few "points" calculators floating around to check the rate rooms go at.
    Anyway, have fun! Don't over plan take you time, get a map before you depart and pick what looks interesting, go with the flow in the parks and take Fastpasses for rides with long lines. You might be restricting yourself by not going with parkhoppers, your group might get bored and will want to switch parks.
    One question though, are you aware of the changes that have occurred to the parks over the years? Because if not you've got some reading to do. Most zones and parks have seen major changes in the last 30 years. For example If You Had Wings was sc for a Delta Dreamflight attraction then trashed for a Buzz Lightyear attraction. EPCOT has seen a beating since the mid-90s; it's no longer about the future as much as just a cheap park with some interesting concepts and some poorly executed Eisner era concepts.

    I have seen the new flying dragon on video!
    That's a cheap PR stunt Disney did, the thing is parked in some warehouse and won't be used anytime soon but there are some interesting shows and parades nonetheless.
    Last edited by BandM; 01-16-2013, 07:03 PM.


    • #3
      Re: How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

      I would suggest on Thursday you visit Epcot.

      Try to avoid crowds. Make breakfast very simple and get to the parks, about 45 minutes before they open. Enjoy the first couple hours when the park are slow. Use FastPass. Take it slow and enjoy the nights in the parks.

      This might work for the girl. If she likes Phineas and Ferb, in Epcot is a special attraction.
      Be Cool Stay in School!
      Next year I'm trying for a summer internship at Stark Industries.


      • #4
        Re: How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

        Your 10-year old would be better served visiting Islands of Adventures and their Harry Potter attractions and land. They have dragons there (the dragon encounter during the Potter ride is quite memorable. If your child loves animals.. I think Animal Kingdom, Busch Gardens and Sea World would be better places to visit over Epcot, and the Disney Studios.


        • #5
          Re: How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

          10 year olds is the perfect age for SeaWorld... talk about magical encounters.
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          • #6
            Re: How can I do a magic visit for a small-town 10 year old and her mom?

            If the 10 year old loves animals, I second Busch Gardens. It's a VERY underrated park (and closer to Orlando and easier to get to than most might think) with some amazing animal encounters. You can get VERY close to the animals there (at several animal habitats, the only separating you and say, a 300 pound tiger, is a thick glass wall).

            And definitely visit Epcot. You're really missing out if you don't go there.


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