WDW Summer 2018 Trip Report

Updated: Jan 18, 2020

When I told my friends that my family was going to Disney World for a family vacation in August, they looked at me like I was crazy. Disney World + summer to them meant humidity, crazy crowds, and certain death. Okay, not that last one, but close enough. I’ll admit, I had my doubts about going to Disney in the summer as well, but it turned out to be an amazing trip. Here’s everything we did!

Day 1 (Saturday, 8/11) - Arrival + Magic Kingdom We took a relatively short flight on American Airlines from PHL (Philadelphia) where we were visiting family to MCO. A major bummer was our flight was delayed almost an hour. We were planning on doing the Disney After Hours event and had left three hours between landing and the event to make it, so weren’t too stressed, but were still bummed. After a pretty nice flight, we landed at MCO and took the always awesome Magical Express to Copper Creek at the Wilderness Lodge. We’ve been DVC owners since January and had stayed DVC twice before this trip, but never at our home resort (CCV) - we’d stayed at the Polynesian, Jambo House, and Kidani Village. We really loved Kidani, especially for its theming and food.


Copper Creek did not disappoint. We were checked in promptly (arriving around 6:30PM) and headed up to our 1-bedroom villa. The accommodations were wonderful, modern, and clean. After quickly freshening up, we headed off to Magic Kingdom!

After a short bus ride, we were in the most magical park of all. I decided to start us off in Adventureland after checking in for the event. The cost of the event included unlimited popcorn, Mickey bars, sodas, and water, so after snacking a bit, we rode Big Thunder, Magic Carpets of Aladdin twice - not having to get off - and then headed to Pirates of the Caribbean. Let me tell you, the humidity was bad, but not nearly as bad as I thought it would be. After Pirates, my dad was feeling a bit tired, so he and my mom headed to Casey’s Corner. I rode Haunted Mansion, Barnstormer twice, and met Cinderella and Elena of Avalor!


I believe it was around midnight when we decided to head back. However, we couldn’t go without saying hi to the big cheese, Mickey himself, at the Town Square Theater! His line is normally over an hour long during the day - we walked right in!

So, we took a Minnie Van home since they were running until 12:30, and called it a night. I’d say it was a pretty successful 3 hours! I highly recommend the Disney After Hours event - I had so much fun and was able to do even more attractions the first time I went in January!

Day 2 (Sunday, 8/11) - Hollywood Studios + Epcot

My mom and I had a reservation bright and early at Cape May Cafe for the Minnie’s Beach Bash Breakfast. I love this character meal! The food is delicious - they have steamed veggies, biscuits, egg white frittata… And even guava juice, which my mom loved! They had recently added Daisy to the lineup here, which is the main reason I wanted to go.


After a fun and delicious breakfast, we headed to the ShipShape salon at Yacht Club to get our hair done. It’s fairly inexpensive for a high-end spa and I was very happy with the results. My DVC discount made it even cheaper!

Afterwards, I rested at our villa before heading over to Hollywood Studios for my lunch reservation at Hollywood & Vine. I was super excited to see the characters in their summer outfits!


Donald was the greeter for the summer season in his cool lifeguard outfit!

Although I’ve heard a lot of negative reviews about H&V, I’ve enjoyed it 5 out of the 6 times I’ve gone. However, I get the earliest possible lunch reservation, so the restaurant is quite empty and I meet the characters fairly quickly. I also love the food, especially the salmon and noodles!

I'm skipping the rest of the pictures from this meal and saving them for my 2019 review. After this, I did a little window shopping before heading to Epcot, where I had a Frozen Ever After fastpass.

Then, weirdly enough, I headed back to Hollywood Studios. I decided to check out Toy Story Land, which hadn’t opened yet during my last trip. The theming was on point! However, I wish there were more attractions as well as a character meet for Bullseye and toys other than the usual three.


I had to meet Buzz while wearing my Buzz tee and ears!

After this, I watched “Voyage of the Little Mermaid” and headed over to Fantasmic. My H&V lunch was one with the dining package, so I got to enter the theater pretty early. I was one of the first few in! The bummer? It started raining like crazy. I thought the show might not happen, but it did! It was my first time seeing the whole thing, and boy, was it amazing!

Day 3 (Monday, 8/13) - Hollywood Studios

First thing on the agenda for Monday was breakfast at Trattoria Al Forno. Flynn was not there last time we went, so we of course had to go again!


Hint: ask what's in his satchel!!

Foodwise, I loved the pastries they give you in a little frying pan, as well as the “Tangled Pancake Tower” - it was delicious!

Afterwards, I headed to Hollywood Studios. I wanted to meet Woody and Jessie, but their line was way too long at this point. So, I decided to just head over to “Beauty and the Beast: Live on Stage” early. I really enjoyed the show! It was cute. Then, I used my Star Tours fast pass. Always fun!


Afterwards, I went to see this cutie! His line wasn’t too bad because it was drizzling at this point and a lot of people had headed out.

Then, I saw the “Galaxy Far Far Away” stage show. Also awesome! I met all the Launch Bay characters after.

After this, I headed over and waited half an hour to meet Star-Lord and Baby Groot, my longest wait of the day.


Worth it though, because they’re no longer there :(

Then, I decided to brave the Woody/Jessie line - took about 40 minutes.


They’re so cute!!!!!!

I then used my Alien Swirling Saucers fast pass. It’s basically identical to Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree in Cars Land, so I really liked it! The lights and music were way cuter than Mater’s. I had dinner at Andy’s Lunchbox right after. I ordered the beef brisket sandwich with potato barrels. It wasn’t anything amazing and I wished I’d gone with my usual chicken tenders at Backlot Express.

Then, I saw the “Disney Movie Magic” projection show and Star Wars Fireworks, both of which were AWESOME!

Day 4 (Tuesday, 8/14) - Magic Kingdom

I woke up extra early Tuesday because I had Early Morning Magic booked at Magic Kingdom! This allowed me to skip Peter Pan, Winnie the Pooh, and Mine Train in my fast passes, because you get to ride them like crazy for an hour and fifteen minutes before the park opens!


I did each one three times, plus the carousel twice :)

After, I immediately queued for “Enchanted Tales with Belle”. I was wearing a Gaston shirt so needed something BatB themed since he wasn’t meeting :(


Not a great pic but oh well! Get my Mrs. Potts purse at Danielle Nicole! After, I decided to stop by Gaston’s Tavern…


After this, I went to Storybook Circus to meet some of my favorite performers!


Snake charmer Donald! He’s so cute!

Afterwards, I realized I’d missed my Big Thunder FP so headed to Tomorrowland to go on Space for my next one. I actually love the version of Space Mountain at WDW. It’s way more intense than the DL one. Then, I used my FP for Space Ranger Spin!

Then, I had lunch at Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe, which was nice! Nothing fancy, just chicken nuggets and fries. But I sat in the room where Ray sings, which was pretty fun!

Afterwards, I watched the Muppet History Show, went to the Hall of Presidents, and saw the Move it Shake it parade, and Mickey’s Friendship Faire. I fell asleep in the Hall of Presidents though. Oops?

Then, I headed back to the hotel to rest up before Mickey’s Backyard BBQ. It was really hot so I ended up leaving the BBQ early, but had a fun time before I did! Before eating, Mickey, Minnie, and the chipmunks came out. Usually Goofy does too but he was late, so I ended up missing him.


The two that started it all! (JK, it started with Oswald)


Cuties!

The food was pretty standard - darn good hot dogs, chicken, and some other stuff. The fountain drinks had a weird aftertaste though. So, after about an hour, I ended up heading out because the heat had exhausted me. Plus, we were switching hotels the next day so I needed to pack.

Day 5 (Wednesday, 8/15) - Hollywood Studios + Epcot

Since I couldn’t get a Fast Pass for Slinky Dogyard Dash that didn’t interfere with my evening plans, I decided to rope drop it. I managed to ride it twice in 40 minutes! It was an awesome ride and I loved it!

After, since I was wearing a Mickey themed outfit, I headed to Mickey and Minnie.


We stan a style icon!


Possibly my fave Disney pic ever?

Then, I rode Star Tours… Had the whole vehicle to myself so I was finally the Rebel Spy! After, I used my Fast Passes for ToT and RRC.

Afterwards, we checked out of CCV and headed to the Contemporary, where we would have lunch at Chef Mickey’s before heading to Bay Lake Tower to check in.


Despite its negative reviews, I really liked the food, fun bustling ambiance, and characters!


Daisy isn't usually there but made a special appearance!


Donald in his old look!


Chef Mickey himself in his old look.


Minnie! This looks pretty similar to her old Goofy’s Kitchen outfit.


Goofy in his old look!

Apparently, Pluto is usually here, but we did not see him.

After one last soft serve (you read that right - they have soft serve!) we headed to BLT.Bummer was, our room wasn’t ready. We ended up chilling in the lobby for 3 hours waiting. When it was finally ready, we headed up and took a nap.

Then, when we woke up, we headed to Epcot Moonlight Magic! I

lined up around 6PM to be third in line to meet my hero, Kim Possible, and the adorable Ron Stoppable!


Next was Hiro and Baymax.


I’d been told Hiro wasn’t signing, but he did sign for me which was so awesome!


Last meet of the night was Sebastian! So cool!

My parents joined me at this point and we used our meal voucher at Sunshine Seasons. Personally, I like the meal vouchers over the unlimited food. They’re better quality.

Then, we rode Frozen, and ended up heading back. I wish I’d gotten to meet Mickey and Goofy in their racing costumes, but c’est la vie!

Day 6 (Thursday, 8/16) - Animal Kingdom

We got to sleep in Thursday, which was much needed. After waking up late, we headed to Sanaa at Kidani Village and had the bread service, samosas, and tea. Our go-to. Then, we headed over to Animal Kingdom. We walked around until it was time for our Festival of the Lion King fast pass. We absolutely loved the show! So vibrant and colorful.

Then, dinner at Tusker House with the Rivers of Light dining package!

The menu changes were disappointing - a lot of our favorites were gone and replaced with safer American choices - but the characters were still great.


Mickey came around first!


Daisy cup-caking!


Just a reminder that he's #1!


Goofy came around last. The rotation took longer than expected, but no big deal. We just relaxed and had a break from the sun.

After, it was time for our Flight of Passage fast passes! My mom and I had ridden before but it was my dad’s first time - he loved it! It’s my favorite attraction at any Disney park and I can’t wait to do it again.

After that, my parents decided to head back due to the heat.

I managed to get a Fast Pass for Dinosaur so went and did that, then one for Expedition Everest so did that too! By that time, it was time to go get seated for Rivers of Light. I got to sit in the front row! The show was very beautiful, I enjoyed it, especially now knowing that the live performers are no longer utilized.

After Rivers of Light, it started to storm, so I hurried back to the hotel and turned in.

Day 7 (Friday, 8/17) - Animal Kingdom + MNSSHP

First thing on my agenda was another Flight of Passage fast pass. I excitedly did that again and then tackle the beast that was the Dino Bash characters. I started with Chip and Dale, my favorites!


Love their costumes! I was third in line for them.


5 minutes for Scrooge.



Pluto used to roam, as seen here, but now has a queued meet.

I then headed back to the hotel to get ready for MNSSHP and dinner at CRT!



Elvis Stitch was the highlight of the evening.



Solo pic with Abu!



Jane too!



And ended the night with Brer Rabbit.


And with that, I headed back to the hotel to pack for the trip home.


Day 8 (Saturday, 8/18) - Departure


After doing some shopping (by some, I mean a lot) that we got shipped home, it was time to board the Tragical Express. Sigh. But, we had an amazing vacation. I highly recommend subscribing to characterlocator.com for character schedules and the like as well as crowd calendars. It helped me manage a high crowd, bad weather trip with minimal problems!


I went again this past summer, so look out for that post!

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