Magic Kingdom Day 1 - January 2014

After finishing the night with a bang, we backed up the following morning with another trip to Magic Kingdom. Being able to walk from Bay Lake Tower to our favourite park never got old!

We arrived in time to see the welcome show (it started at 8:45am but the area inside the turnstiles was full by 8:35am), which I really enjoy and like to make sure I'm standing where I can see what's happening on at least one of my visits to the Magic Kingdom each trip.

One day, if I wake up early enough I might try and get to the park by 7am (with a 9am opening) to try and get picked as family of the day so I can ride on the train with all the characters. Actually, on second thought, I don't think I want to get up that early ever on my holiday.

We entered the park after the countdown and followed the crowds down Main Street U.S.A.

Then stopped for a quick shot of the castle. It continues to put a smile on my face every time I see it. Nothing says Disney to me as much as this view.

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Walt Disney World Dining Review - Le Cellier Steakhouse Lunch

Le Cellier Steakhouse is located in Epcot's Canada Pavilion. Styled after the grandest château-style hotels—Fairmont Le Château Frontenac and Fairmont Château Laurier, the restaurant is offers a nice cozy atmosphere for a signature meal. Jim and I had visited here for dinner in May and had a great experience, awesome server and delicious food, so we were keen to share it with the rest of the family. As a signature restaurant it isn't a chep option, so it was definitely our treat of the trip.

We arrived at 12:20pm for our 12:30pm reservation. Our reservation was originally for 12pm but got changed at the last minute when the restaurant opening time was pushed back. The change wasn't ideal with LJ's nap schedule but it was workable. We let LJ run around outside the restaurant while we waited for our table, since the waiting area is really quite small. When we were called inside at 12:30pm it was pack full of people.

As we entered there was a display of some of the alcoholic offerings, which held no appeal to me but were enjoyed by others in my party.

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10-Day Disneyland Vacation Pass

If you're heading to Anaheim for an extended stay Magical Mouse Holidays can help you organise your 10-Day Disneyland Vacation Pass, which is only available to Australians (and New Zealanders).

The pass allows you ten (10) days admission to both Disneyland Resort theme parks, including visits to both theme parks on the same day. Tickets are available now for first use through December 31 2018!

As a bonus, you will also receive one Magic Morning admission for early entry into a Disneyland Park. Although, if you're staying at a Disney hotel, you'll be able to take advantage of Extra Magic Hours each day of your stay!

Due to the restricted nature of this ticket it can only be purchased in Australia before you depart and can't be combined with accommodation as part of a Walt Disney Travel Company Disneyland package. This means you'll need to book your Disneyland Resort accommodation and your 10-Day Disneyland ticket separately. But rest assured, if you go this way we will still include our planning service at no additional charge.

We secure these tickets for you through Qantas Holidays and you will receive a voucher to exchange at any Main Entrance Ticket Window at Disneyland Park OR if you are staying at a Disneyland Resort hotel you may exchange this voucher at the hotel's Front Desk upon check-in for admission tickets. Photo identification will be required for issuance of the theme park admission, as proof you really are an Aussie.

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Epcot Day 1 - January 2014

Today was an Epcot day and we were a little slow moving, we didn't get out of our room until 8:10am, at least 10 minutes later than I had planned on.

We thankfully had some good monorail karma and found the coral monorail waiting for us at the Contemporary. We changed platforms at the Transportation and Ticket Center and the red monorail arrived a few minutes later to take us to Epcot. We arrived at Epcot at 8:42am and once we made it through the bag check we saw this...

A great deal more people than I had hoped to see. It was a little bit crazy here and we quickly realised that we would have been better off heading across to the far left, since the queues near the middle ended up with a number of lines trying to merge into one. Manouvering through crowds with the ECV was a little difficult though, so we stuck with where we were and I just quietly cursed the crowds. They started letting people into the park at 8:55am and we didn't get through the tapstiles until 9:15am.

It really wasn't the end of the world, since we weren't heading for any of the headliners first thing but it was the principle of the thing! First point of call for us was the Seas Pavilion.

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Walt Disney World Dining Review - Tony's Town Square Dinner

Tony's Town Square Restaurant is found in the Magic Kingdom on Main Street U.S.A. It is a Lady and the Tramp themed family-friendly italian restaurant that we were keen to return to after a great lunch here on our previous visit last May (Tony's Town Square lunch review).

For this meal, Jim, LJ and I ditched the rest of the family and had a meal on our own (they were getting their fill of Italian at Mama Melrose's before Fantasmic!).

We arrived at the restaurant nice and early and it had been a cold day, so when I checked us in I requested a table inside. I didn't want to be outside as the sun went down.

We had hoped LJ would want to sit with some of the big kids in the nice, comfy lobby and watch Lady & the Tramp. However, it quickly became clear we were in for an interesting meal with a slightly crazy son, who decided that he was going to tantrum unless he was walking up and down the stairs on the restaurant and adjoining theatre's patio. I think he was protesting over the fact that there were no characters at this meal! Jim and I took it in turns to watch LJ and station ourselves inside to listen for our name being called (it would have been great if they had a pager here). It took about 10 minutes for our table to be ready, although it felt like so much longer as LJ wanted to run further and further from the restaurant.

Some of the desserts were on display as we entered the main dining room. From left to right there's the cheesecake with cute Lady and the Tramp chocolate dusting, tiramisu (?) and chocolate cake.

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