Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Epcot {Walt Disney World}

Part of winning the Walt Disney World trip prize was that we were expected to attend the two live tapings for Breakfast Television.  We were picked up from our hotel at 5:30 am with about 300 people total.  This includes all the winners, the crew, and their families.  We were bused to Epcot and arrived around 6 am.  

Epcot is the prettiest park, especially as they currently have the Flower & Garden Festival on right now.

We were given a quick breakfast and then set up along the water for the taping.

Breakfast Television is celebrating it's 25th anniversary which was the reason for the trips that were given away through BT and West Jet. 

We were encouraged to wear blue because that is a West Jet and Breakfast Television colour.

It was BT Toronto that was hosting so I wasn't really familiar with them.  Only Dawn Chubai, the reporter from BT Vancouver had joined us on the trip.  The cool thing was that many characters were there for the taping and during the commercial breaks, the kids could get their autographs and photos.

I got to meet Brad Smith (Bachelor Canada) who is currently an entertainment reporter for City TV. Totally enjoyed his season.

These are all of the kids from the taping as they were being set up for a promo shot.  Nya was tiiiiiired.

Nya loved meeting Pluto.  He gave her a kiss :)

There were snacks for us and you could hang out in the `West Jet Lounge'. 

The kids don't actually know who Chip and Dale are but they were excited to get more photos.

We were at the taping until 10am. Yes, 4 hours of cheering, dancing and watching early in the morning.  Once we were free to go, we decided to spend the day at Epcot.  We first did the Test Track where the kids could design their own vehicle and see how it performed next to other people's creations.  You get to ride the simulation car and the boys did it first with Gary and then with me.  It isn't very thrilling but they loved seeing how their car performed.  

We then did the Mission: SPACE ride.  Well, just Gary and Koen did it as Kai wasn't feeling 100%.  It's a space launch on a shuttle simulator.  You can see the Buzz Lightyear Topiary in the backyard.  They were all over Epcot. 

During these rides, Nya would just explore the gift shot (handily located at the rides exit) and declare that she wanted everything on her birthday list.  These two made the list.

One of my favourite parts of Disney World is the free wifi and My Disney Experience website.  You can find wait times, locations of rides/characters/bathrooms...everything!  So handy!

Bathroom trips with Nya were always hectic as she liked to take off every time it was my turn to go. Various women stopped her and on this particular time, I didn't hang my camera up properly and in the rush it fell to the ground :(  My 24-70mm lens.  It seems to be mostly aesthetic damages but still not good.

Next we went to the Sea Base area to see all the fish, sting rays, sharks and dolphins.  We also did the Nemo & Friends ride. We didn't stay too long as I feel that the Vancouver Aquarium is pretty amazing back here at home.

We then did the Soarin' ride.  Thankfully we could use our Fast Pass. I did it with the boys while Gary did Living With the Land with Nya.  Soarin' was okay but not as great as I had hoped.  I think FlyOver Canada is better.  If we did not have the kids with us, Gary and I for sure would've walked through all the countries pavilions and tried various food but the kids were pretty done.  There were not a lot of things for younger kids to do there (in regards to characters and rides).  There were the fewest families there of any of the parks.

Hot, sweaty and tired, we decided to spend the rest of the day at the water park.  We had to take 3 buses to get to Typhoon Lagoon.  I was able to snorkel across Shark Reef in the salt water tank with sharks and rays swimming below me.  Totally enjoyed it as I LOVE snorkeling.  Both boys got too scared moments before stepping in the water.  Understandably.  We then did a family tube ride on the lazy river but that slowly turned competitive for the boys and Koen had a melt down.  

We were just an hour into our time there and enjoying the GIANT wave pool (highlight!) when it started to rain.  Hard.  Thunder and lightning.  We had to get out of the pool and we decided to just pack up and head home.  We were very wet and cold but thankfully had our rain ponchos along to help us as we waited for the bus home.  I think the other water park is better for kids (Blizzard Beach) but I really wanted to do the snorkeling.  I wish we had a good full sunny half day there as I know the kids would've loved it, but thunderstorms are common in Orlando so we knew it was a possibility.

We went back to our resort for dinner.  The rain was still coming down hard so the kids had a little down time watching tv.  We went to bed early because the next day we were up again at 5am for the next taping of Breakfast Television.

Epcot was not our favourite park.  It could be that we were just tired but I think a lot of Epcot is similar to what we could do at home (Science World, Vancouver Aquarium and FlyOver Canada).   Maybe we missed out on something huge but overall we found it beautiful yet not exhilarating.

Did we miss out on something huge there?



  1. We were at Epcot just after it opened many years ago (before we had children, so that is a long time ago!) and we really liked it, but yes, it isn't as child friendly. We have seen some great fireworks displays there in the evenings. You can't beat the Magic Kingdom for it's magic though! Aren't all the gardens, shrubs etc amazing at Disney?

    1. Oh how I wish I could've seen a fireworks display there! We were supposed to on the first night there but we were way too exhausted! I love how each park there is just so different! I didn't realize how `close' Disney World was to Ontario!

    2. Yes, a very manageable trip from here. We didn't do much travelling when our children were small, but we did go to Disney World a few times. We in Ontario always envy you folks in Vancouver who are 'close' to Hawaii! Our son and his family are due to arrive in Vancouver tomorrow. With them living there, I suspect an Alaskan cruise and maybe that trip to Hawaii will be in our future!

    3. I never even thought about how close Hawaii is! Oh boy, Alaskan cruise is on my `to do' list!

  2. Wow - what a long day that must have been! SOOOO sorry your camera dropped - that would be soooo sad and disappointing. Hopefully it keeps functioning well though.