The biggest kid in the parks.

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Tony's picture
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The biggest kid in the parks.

Hi all, thought it would be polite to introduce myself here before posting elsewhere. My first visit to WDW was two years ago at age 36 and most recent almost 2 weeks ago (now aged 38) and according to my wife I was the biggest kid in the parks both times biggrin although I'm sure a few here would dispute that and lay claim to the title themselves. awesome

Both visits have been made without children as our youngest is now 16 and can be left in the care of his older brothers so this place being for 'grown ups' seems the ideal place for me. We were however travelling with friends who have over 8 visits under thier belts who act like personal tour guides meaning we managed to cram an awful lot into our two week stays.

It's likely to be another two years before we can return again, so until then I hope the tales and experiences on here will keep my Disney cravings satisfied.

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Welcome, Tony! So good to have you on the boards.

I look forward to hearing your stories about WDW -- two weeks is a great length of stay. What were some of your best memories of this past trip? mickey

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Tony's picture
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We did a lot more besides Disney in the two weeks, Seaworld, Busch Gardens, the Univeral parks...

The Disney highlight for us though was catching Pooh and Tigger in the back of a shop in the UK part of Epcot with absolutley no kids waiting to see them, in fact they kept ducking out of a back door and dancing along to The British Invasion in the village square. We had a great few minutes playing with them while their handler took pics with my camera.

I thought the new parade at MK where they stop in front of the castle was great and it gave loads of time to photograph the characters.

Our best moment from this trip though was a non-Disney one, swimming with the Manatee in the Crystal River.

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Tony, welcome to the friendliest group of Disney enthusiasts around. We may not be the biggest or busiest forum but we are the nicest and the best, we love Disney and as far as I am concerned it shows. Don't be afraid to give youre opinion and don't be shy. We are all friends here!! We will satisfy youre Disney cravings for sure, and you can help satisfy ours.

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Sounds like a wonderful trip biggrin Thank you for sharing the highlights and that fun pic with Tigger and Pooh! I think it's funny how LONG the line gets for them in the MK, but they're often un-noticed in the UK pavilion in Epcot wink

Welcome to the boards, Tony! Looking forward to your posts welcome

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Hey Tony! Welcome to the boards!

That's a great pic with Tigger and Pooh.

What made you finally decide to go at 36? We have a lot of people on the board who started going in their 30s.

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I'd have gone much younger, but travelling from the UK cost is a big factor and we just couldn't afford it before then. TBH, I didn't think we could really afford it then until friends who had been quite a few times clued us up on a few ways to save.

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Merry Christmas Everyone!

Welcome to the friendliest Disney site on the Web, Tony! I am in New Jersey, on America's east coast. I would think, with the current exchange rate between our dollar and the British pound, that you and your lovely wife would visit WDW more often.

Biggest kid in the parks? I think you may need a rethink. silly

Welcome!

Jim

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Hi Tony! Welcome! mickey

Tony's picture
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Exchange rates were much better two years ago at about 2:1 making a dollar worth about £0.50. It's currently around 1.6:1

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Brad's picture
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Hi Tony! Welcome aboard!

We're glad to have some more members from the UK. I've always had an impression that WDW is pretty big over there with the adults. Is my impression correct, or do you get all the same odd looks that we get over here when we say we're into Disney?

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There are plenty of Disney nuts over here, but you have to get used to odd looks. I just blame the wife.

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Tony wrote:
There are plenty of Disney nuts over here, but you have to get used to odd looks. I just blame the wife.

That sounds about right biggrin

Welcome to WDWFG, Tony!

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Welcome! My husband (teacherdrama) and I are in NJ also. This really is the friendliest board I have ever been been on - and I have been on quite a few!

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yay Welcome, Tony! I think you're going to love these forums. It's a great group of people. I love that photo of you two with Pooh and Tigger!

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Hi and Welcome!!! I agree with the previous posters that this is a friendly and knowledgeable group.

I must know, How did you swim with the mantee? Was it a planned activity or just luck of time and place????? Cooooooollllllll......

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Thanks for the further welcomes.

The Manatee swim was a pre-booked tour with Dolphin Tours (am I allowed to give the company name?). They took us up to the Crystal River by coach, where we went out on boats to snorkel. Manatee interaction isn't a guaranteed but they do all they can to make sure you're not dissapointed. The day also includes a visit to the Homosassa State Wildlife Park and an airboat ride. We were staying off property and were picked up from I-Drive, but I believe they pick up from DTD too.

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Tony wrote:
Thanks for the further welcomes.

The Manatee swim was a pre-booked tour with Dolphin Tours (am I allowed to give the company name?). They took us up to the Crystal River by coach, where we went out on boats to snorkel. Manatee interaction isn't a guaranteed but they do all they can to make sure you're not dissapointed. The day also includes a visit to the Homosassa State Wildlife Park and an airboat ride. We were staying off property and were picked up from I-Drive, but I believe they pick up from DTD too.

That sounds like a fun "excursion!" You can absolutely post the company name (no real concerns about stuff like that around here, as far as I can tell). Would love to hear it.

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cdub's picture
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I've never seen anyone get uptight about company mentions. It's a good way to reward those who did a good job and punish those who didn't!

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The company is http://www.floridadolphintours.com/index.html The Manatee trip was brilliant and very well organised. They use other companies to provide the boat trips so it would theoretically be possible to do them without using the tour company.

We did the Clearwater beach trip with Dolphin Tours too, which was a good day out and we'd do it again, but the guide/driver wasn't as good as the Manatee guide.

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The manatees I've seen at the Epcot Seas aquarium are HUGE! I can't imagine what it would be like to swim with one of those... eek

Was there a lot of discussion on the tour about their endangered status, Tony?

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The endangered status is pushed very heavily, along with lots of rules about what you can and cannot do while in the water. There are areas marked off that the manatee favour when resting that you are not allowed to enter, you're only allowed to touch them with one hand and cannot approach beyond a certain distance, the manatee have to come to you IF they want to. The boat operators ensure the rules are kept and there are officials watching them to make sure they do.

It's unlikely that you'd be swimming with just one manatee in the area depending on the time of year. During the cooler months there can be 10's in the area that you are swimming.

I believe the glass at Epcot magnifies things slightly, having said that they are still large animals.

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Those are great pictures. Seems like a really cool experience.

Are those man-made tanks? Seems like they're natural...

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2005 Port Orleans Riverside
2006 Animal Kingdom Lodge
2007 Wilderness Lodge
2008 Animal Kingdom Lodge
2009 CBR/Polynesian

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The pics were taken from a boat on the Crystal River, so completely natural.

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Thank you for posting those photos and the information. That looks like a fantastic diversion from the parks.

How did you hear about that?

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Yes, thanks for the manatee tour info. I am already bugging DH about trying it!