Sunday, April 30, 2017

DDW Pic 2062. Splash Mountain

Splash Mountain
Although I have many photos of the outside of Splash Mountain, I have far fewer on the ride itself. This is mainly because I wanted to keep my iPhones dry. However, my latest one is water resistant, so I took quite a few pictures while riding last night. Here is one of Brer Rabbit.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

DDW Pic 2061. iCan

I ran into this robot from outer space in Tomorrowland today. This recent Magic Kingdom addition interacts with guests throughout the day. Since "Push" the trash can has left the park, there hasn't been much in the way of interactive,  guest experiences. iCan seems to have added some fun to the area.

Friday, April 28, 2017

DDW Pic 2060. Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom
There are so many little "quiet" spots to be found around Animal Kingdom. This brook is located next to a small path that runs parallel to the main walkway between Asia and Africa. There is also a small seating area nearby, which is a nice place to take a break.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

DDW Pic 2059. Thunder Mountain

Thunder Mountain
I always like to take unique "on-ride" photos when possible. I took this shot near the top of the second lift hill. You can see another train, as well as Cinderella Castle in the distance.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

DDW Pic 2058. Polynesian Bungalows

Polynesian Bungalows 
The Polynesian Bungalows are unique accommodations on the shore of Seven Seas Lagoon. They each sleep up to 8 adults, and they have a spectacular view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks. I took this shot last week. You can see how I used two Bungalows to frame Space Mountain in the background.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

DDW Pic 2057. Kidani Village

Kidani Village
Today, I visited some good friends at one of my favorite resorts, Animal Kingdom Lodge. Their villa was in the Kidani Village section, and this was the view from their balcony. These are two of the biggest ostriches I have ever seen.

Monday, April 24, 2017

DDW Pic 2056. Dale

The 2017 Flower and Garden Festival is past the halfway point, and I headed to Epcot a few days ago to take some more pictures. There are so many great topiaries this year, which make for excellent photo opportunities. This Dale topiary can be found on the main walkway between Spaceship Earth and World Showcase.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

DDW Pic 2055. Key Lime Tart

Key Lime Tart
I don't post too many pictures of food, but this is one of my favorites. This delicious dessert is the Key Lime Tart from the Sunshine Seasons food court in the Land Pavilion at Epcot. I took this shot a few days ago while doing some exploring at the Flower and Garden Festival.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

DDW Pic 2054. General Store

General Store
Although it sells modern day treats, the General Store in Frontierland is very well themed to the "old" West. This Mickey stands in the main window display of the store. I took this shot today, while giving a Magic Kingdom tour.

Friday, April 21, 2017

DDW Pic 2053. Butterfly

The Epcot Flower and Garden Festival has a pavilion called Tinker Bell's Butterfly House. It is a great place to enjoy and learn about butterflies. I took this closeup shot this afternoon.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

DDW Pic 2052. Wedding Pavilion

Wedding Pavilion
At last check, there are an average of six weddings per day at Walt Disney World. Many of them are performed at the Wedding Pavilion at the Grand Floridian. I took this shot from the Polynesian beach yesterday.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

DDW Pic 2051. Pinocchio Village Haus

Pinocchio Village Haus
Pinocchio village house is one of the quick service restaurants in the Magic Kingdom. It is very well themed to the 1940 film. This wall can be found near the exit door leading to the restrooms. If you look directly above the letter "a" in the word dreams, you'll find a small, dark, hidden Mickey.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

DDW Pic 2050. Polynesian

I spent some time at the Polynesian Village resort today. Although the volcano  pool is one of the most popular on Disney property, the other pool at this resort is also very nice. It has a "zero entry" area, some private cabanas, and even a full service bar and walk-up quick service restaurant. The other perk of this pool, is that it is usually less crowded than the volcano pool.

Monday, April 17, 2017

DDW Pic 2049. Adventureland

There are many statues, structures, and figures in Adventureland that appear to be stationary, but actually come to "life" at times. A Pirate's Adventures is an experience, where guests interact with these objects using their Magic Band or a magic talisman. This statue is near the stairs to Jungle Cruise. You can see that it's mouth opens and eyes turn green when someone interacts with it.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

DDW Pic 2048. Chewbacca

We are approaching the 40th anniversary  of the Star Wars franchise, and it is a pretty big deal in Central Florida. There is a huge celebration taking place in Orlando this weekend, and Hollywood Studios continues to be the place to be for all things Star Wars. I took this shot of Chewbacca during the "Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away" show, in the center of the park.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

DDW Pic 2047. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train 
The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is still one of the most popular attractions at Walt Disney World, with wait times often exceeding 2 hours. At the end of the ride, the coaster passes by the dwarfs' house. Inside the house are several figures that were taken from the old "Snow White's Scary Adventures" ride. I took this shot of Happy Dwarf a few weeks back, while riding the Mine Train.

Friday, April 14, 2017

DDW Pic 2046. Polynesian

While walking thru the Polynesian this morning, I noticed this photo in a hallway near the lobby. It was obviously taken in the 70s, shortly after the resort opened. Although I visited Walt Disney World in the late 70s, I don't remember seeing these cabana style boats on the Seven Seas Lagoon.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

DDW Pic 2045. Adventureland

The Adventureland attractions are known for containing many animals. There are the wild ones on the Jungle Cruise, the birds in the Tiki Room, and even a bunch in Pirates of the Caribbean. However, this "real" squirrel was just hanging out on a wall near the Swiss Family Treehouse when I snapped this shot.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

DDW Pic 2044. Future World East

Future World East
Future World East is the area of Epcot where you will find Universe of Energy, Mission Space, and Test Track. The monorail heads thru Future World East when it enters the park, and continues thru Future World West just prior to arriving at the station. I took this shot near Test Track a few weeks ago.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

DDW Pic 2043. Tree of Life

Tree of Life
The Tree of Life is a beautuful park icon as well as an amazing engineering feat. It is 145 feet tall and has over 325 animals carved into it. It was built over an offshore oil rig, and can withstand hurricane force winds. I took this shot at park opening time. You can see from the massive crowd that this is spring break season.

Monday, April 10, 2017

DDW Pic 2042. Lightning McQueen

Lightning McQueen
The Epcot Flower and Garden Festival has so many good topiaries this year. One of the best is the full size Lightning McQueen that can be found in the area of Test Track. I took this shot in "portrait mode," which is a fun new feature on the latest iPhone.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

DDW Pic 2041. Liberty Square

Liberty Square 
The Columbia Harbour House is one of my favorite spots for lunch, when I'm giving a Magic Kingdom tour. The upstairs seating area gives guests some interesting views outside of the windows. I took this shot of the area adjacent to Hall of Presidents in Liberty Square from a west facing window of the restaurant.

DDW Pic 2040. Water Buffalo

Water Buffalo
The Maharajah Jungle Trek is best known for its tigers. However, there are many more animals in this area, including water buffalo. There are three of them in total, and I was able to get a shot of two that were in plain sight. The third was just out of view of the camera. The three water buffalo are named Dorothy, Rose, and Blanche, after TVs Golden Girls!

Friday, April 7, 2017

DDW Pic 2039. Blue Angels

Blue Angels
Yesterday morning, the Navy Blue Angels did two "fly-bys" over the Magic Kingdom. They are in the area for an air show this weekend. It was quite a thrill to see them directly over Cinderella Castle.

DDW Pic 2038. Swiss Family Treehouse

Swiss Family Treehouse 
Disney recently completed a refurbishment of the Swiss Family Treehouse. They removed much of the foliage that previously blocked the view from the Jungle Cruise area. I took this shot from the Jungle Cruise steps this afternoon.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

DDW Pic 2037. Akershus

Named for a castle in Oslo, Norway, Akershus is a popular "princess" dining spot in Epcot. It has a medieval feel with giant wooden beams and large flags hanging from the ceiling. I took this shot while my tour guests were enjoying lunch at the restaurant this past weekend.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

DDW Pic 2036. Anteater

In the past, one of the first animals that guests would encounter at Animal Kingdom was an anteater. He was located on the left side of The Oasis, not far from the park entrance. However, it has been a while since an anteater was last seen at this park. But, a few days ago, a new one arrived and I was able to snap this photo of him.

Monday, April 3, 2017

DDW Pic 2035. Frozen Ever After

Frozen Ever After
Epcot's "Frozen Ever After" is currently one of the most popular attractions in Walt Disney World. It is very difficult to get FastPasses, and wait times often exceed 90 minutes. Getting a photo of the entrance without any people can be a challenge. However, this ride had a maintenance issue and was temporarily closed. There were dozens of guests standing behind me, anxiously waiting for the attraction to re-open.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

DDW Pic 2034. Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom
When giving Animal Kingdom tours, I always enjoy taking my guests through Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail. In addition to the gorillas, there are hippos, zebras, and some interesting birds. Today, we saw a great egret standing on the head of this sleeping hippo.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

DDW Pic 2033. Germany

While walking by the Germany pavilion in Epcot today, I stopped for a few minutes to listen to the new Bavarian folk band. This quartet is called Wies N Buam, and they play seven sets per day. They are one of several new live groups that entertain World Showcase guests on a daily basis.