Disney World In 4 Days + Disney Vlog!

I am about 5 trips behind, but I can’t help but dive into Disney World recaps first! Some people may think it is crazy to see all 4 parks in Disney World in 4 days…and I wouldn’t argue…but for us it was all the time we had and it was well worth it in the end. We left bright and early the day after Thanksgiving and took full advantage of the rest of the day in a park. I think at this point our adrenaline was on high and we could have went all day…as you will see, we did! For 4 days in a row! It’s obvious to want to see and do it all, no matter how much time you have in Disney, and this is what worked best for us.

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Day One: Hollywood Studios & Disney Springs.

This was the busiest day for us since we wanted to see so much. The key to this schedule is staying at a Disney resort and taking advantage of their transportation, luggage assistance and extra magic hours. Because we were able to check bags and Disney would handle delivering them to our room, we only brought what we would take into the park, with us onto the plane. I had a small backpack with necessities, Dave had his backpack and our friends did as well. We arrived in Orlando around 8am, boarded the Magical Express and were on our way to the hotel zone by 8:30am. Since we didn’t need to drop anything off at the hotel, we asked the driver which stop was the closest to Hollywood Studios and got off there. As soon as we got off, the bus for Hollywood Studios was pulling up- perfect timing!

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Once we arrived we decided to explore the park, ride some rides with lower wait times and have lunch. I had already reserved a Fast Pass (more on this in another post!) for Rockin’ Rollercoaster which was around 12pm. Once we took our ride using the Fast Pass, we noticed the Tower of Terror had a shorter line, so we got on that as well. Since we had already been on the two bigger rides, we decided to head back to the hotel. Our room became available around 11am which was awesome! We boarded the shuttle, avoided checking in since our magic bands were the room key, and relaxed for about an hour in the room.

Around 4pm we made our way to Disney Springs to explore and have dinner. We walked around for a while, did some shopping and then made our way to Cookes of Dublin for dinner. Most of the restaurants had a very long wait, and we were starving. Cookes of Dublin was a fast casual setting, with outdoor seating and craft beers- perfect for us to relax a bit. After dinner we did a little more shopping- having every purchase sent back to our resort so we didn’t need to carry it. Once we finished everything we needed to do and see at Disney Spring, back on the shuttle we went to see more of Hollywood Studios. Our Extra Magic Hours allowed us to stay in the park until 1am, which we did, as we fully enjoyed every ride. Tower of Terror and Toy Story Mania being the best rides in the park.

Day Two: Epcot.

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It’s very important to wake up early when you are on a time crunch, this meant a 6am alarm clock, quick shower rotations, and a fast breakfast to be at the shuttle stop by 7:30am every morning (with EMH starting at 8am). There were long shuttle lines for Epcot, so we arrived a little late, but thankfully we were still able to see some empty areas of the park. Soarin’ was our first ride, since the Fast Pass was for Test Track. Once we rode the rides at the beginning of the park, it was time to start drinking around the world. I am going to do an entire post of this because it was so much fun, but basically Dave made us all passports and each country had it’s own drink. We decided to share drinks in a few countries to make sure we at least remembered why we were there.

I love Epcot because of the various rides, activities and experiences they offer, it’s truly unlike any other amusement park. It’s an experience park for sure. Unfortunately, we decided to make some sacrifices with what we were able to do in each park, solely because we didn’t want to overly exhaust ourselves by doing everything all day. Around 7pm we decided we would skip the firework show (boo- I was bummed because fireworks are my favorite, but I understood) and head back to the resort. It was nice for our bodies to get their needed rest before the most magical day of all.

Day Three: Magic Kingdom (including Mickey’s Christmas Party).

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Another early wake-up call of 6am. I had no idea how many people lined up to get into Magic Kingdom when it opened. I thought getting there 30 minutes before would be enough, but I wish we would have been there at least an hour prior to the opening- now I know for next time! As soon as we got there, we rented a locker for our change of clothes. We were staying for the Christmas party and wanted some festive attire to wear that night, so this was a great option. After we got the deposit back I think it was only $5 for the whole day with unlimited use.

If you haven’t experienced the opening of Magic Kingdom before- DO IT! The train pulls in with Mickey & friends, there is a song and dance, then a countdown. It was so much fun to experience. Then the flood gates open and it’s a madhouse to get into the park and get that first glimpse of the castle. We walked/ran down main street to get some photos of the castle pre-crowds, which was very worth it.

Once we had all of our photos, we made our way to the bigger rides- Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, etc. Thankfully, the EMH allowed us about 2 hours with very minimal wait times so we were able to take our time throughout the morning. The only thing I would change is not going to the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at this time because the lines were very long later in the day- thankfully, we did have a Fast Pass (Magic Kingdom actually allows you three FP’s). It was really nice taking the day slowly for the most part and enjoying ourselves around every turn. I highly suggest getting a spot early for parades, which is also a great time to relax while you wait. The biggest piece of advice for Magic Kingdom is to take it all in and go at your own pace. Also, ride all of the rides. Even the “kiddie” rides like Dumbo and Aladdin’s carpets.

The Christmas party started at 7pm, which was so much fun! There were complimentary snacks, like eggnog and snickerdoodle cookies, various shows and parades, and some of the rides were transformed into Christmas experiences. After the Christmas parade it snowed on Main street! We didn’t make it to 12am (when the party ends) but leaving around 11pm was perfect for us- especially because we needed to pack when we got back.

Day Four: Animal Kingdom.

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With a wake-up call again at 6am, we finished packing up any last minute items and dropped off our luggage in the lobby for them to hold for us. We got to the park as soon as they opened, grabbed a map and planned our day. We saved Animal Kingdom for last because we had heard it has less to do than all of the other parks- which was somewhat true. This was the perfect park for us on our last day, because it was a shorter time in the park and because we could relax as we roamed. We went straight for the safari ride when we arrived and it was so cool! I don’t remember riding that previously and we all loved it.

We managed to plan our day out perfectly and even had time to ride Expedition Everest three times! We called it a day around 3pm and made our way back to the hotel to get ourselves together. With all of us departing around 7:30, this allowed for us to change, chill out for a little while, and have dinner before we departing this magical place.

In the end we had the best time, my only regret is not having time to explore the resort. Port Orleans had so much to offer, as all Disney Resorts do, and we couldn’t take part in it because we didn’t have the time. Next time, we definitely will put time aside for that! I can’t wait to dive deeper into our plan of attack for each park, for now take a look at our adventures in the Disney World Vlog!

Have you ever done Disney World in 4 days?

 

 

  • Megan

    Its so interesting to me to read Disney recaps from adult bloggers. I only remember what my little 12 year old brain took note of during our trip and don’t remember a lot. I also don’t think I realized that my parents were making reservations at various restaurants. I’ve heard that a lot! That you need to make reservations throughout the trip because restaurants book up months in advance. So insane. Whoa the magic wristband thing is intense- fingerprints too?! I get it- in case someone steals it, I just didn’t think that thru! LOVE the Vlog! I miss taking video on trips… I miss going on trips! Here’s to 2017 and more travel :)

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I’ll get into the whole reservation thing in some later posts, but the fight is real for character dining. These days you literally need to be on the website or on your phone as soon as reservations become available (about 120 days before) because they book up SO FAST. We were able to make last minute reservations at Be Our Guest and then nobody wanted to go with me. I couldn’t believe how strict they were on getting into the park, I mean I think it was great because people can’t cheat the system but it was still crazy.

  • http://www.wanderingweekenders.com/ Ashley @ Wandering Weekenders

    So your Disney experience is pretty much exactly how I would have done Disney if we had 4 days! We only had 3 days during our last trip, so we missed out on Animal Kingdom, but I think that we still got to do and see a lot. Staying on property really is key because the extra magic hours are so amazing! You get to do and see so much with that extra hour! And yes to seeing the opening ceremony at Magic Kingdom! It’s so cute! I can’t wait hear more about your trip!
    P.S. You’re not the only one that’s behind on trips! I think that I’m at about the same!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      So we really were debating Animal Kingdom, like up until the night before haha. I had made the plans and everything but when I was younger I didn’t love it. In the end I was really glad we were able to go, but it definitely isn’t a must like the other 3 parks are. The extra hours was so worth it all by itself! Hollywood studios gave us extra hours from 10pm until 1am and it was amazing! I’m so glad I’m not the only one behind, I don’t think I will ever catch up :(

  • http://www.dreambigandbuytheshoes.com/ Emelia @ Dream Big & Buy the S

    What a fun time. I’ve only been to Disney once and it was for a day. We got a free give a day get a day pass several years ago. Chuck and I went to Tampa for the super bowl and went to Disney for a day when we were in Florida. We did Hollywood studios and loved it- tower of terror is sooo fun! I can’t wait to go back. I love your method of hitting one as day- way to get it done!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      That is awesome though! Free Disney tickets are nearly unheard of. It would be so much fun to go as a family!

  • http://vivianbishop.com Vivian Bishop

    Oh my gosh I am only extremely jealous! I have only ever been to Disneyland so I can only imagine how amazing Disney World is!! I have been dying for a Disney trip lately.

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Don’t tell anyone haha but I think I like Disneyland more. California Adventure is like a little bit of Epcot and Hollywood Studios together, and then a dash of Animal Kingdom, so you aren’t missing that much. I definitely do think a trip to Disney World is worth it though!

  • http://sarahandstewart.blogspot.com/ Sarah Alway

    I’ve never been to Disney World before, but this seriously does look like the happiest place on earth! I can’t wait until my kiddos are old enough that we can take them. Although Disneyland is probably an easier bet for us out here on the West Coast… or would we be missing out??

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I can’t wait to go as a family one day- your little babes will love it in a few years! I love both Disneyland and Disney World. Disneyland is great because there is less to see so you don’t feel like you are ever in a rush, but Disney World has so many things to do it’s amazing. Both are totally worth it, but if you had to pick one I would try and make it to Disney World. The whole experience just feels a little different, like you left the real world and you were transported into Disney 110%

      • http://sarahandstewart.blogspot.com/ Sarah Alway

        Well maybe we’ll have to start with Disneyland then and work our way up!

  • Bailey

    Oh wow, I feel exhausted reading your post about how busy you were on your trip to Disney! My husband and I hope to visit Disney next year but we want to make a longer trip out of it (to also go to Universal Studios and maybe the beach).

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Haha that’s how I felt typing it! Universal and the beach will be awesome as well!

  • Jordan Kennedy

    I worked at WDW for five years. The first time we took my brother in law we did all four parks in one day but that’s what you get when you’re a former VIP tour guide lol

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I may have passed out with all four in one day, but I could totally get that if you know the ins and outs haha. I am jealous!

  • http://www.thefreeandwildblog.com Annie

    Definitely referenced this before our trip! Sounds like you guys had such a fun time! We ate at Raglan Road, which is Cookes of Dublin’s sister restaurant. It is hands down my favorite restaurant EVER. We ate there twice this trip because I love it just that much!

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