On Tuesday, May 14th at 3 a.m., I set out on my first theme park trip of 2019. I would be visiting Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. My party consisted of myself, my girlfriend Hailey and 5 other people in her family. We would be visiting for 8 days (7 nights) and would be staying at Saratoga Springs Resort.
Our plane landed around 9 a.m., and before we knew it we were on the Magical Express driving to our resort. Once we arrived at Saratoga, we spent some time waiting in the lobby for a little bit before we decided to grab food at the resort’s quick service, The Artist’s Palette. They had a variety of options on their menu, including sandwiches, salads, pizzas, and more. That said, they seemed to mostly specialize in sandwiches, so I decided to use my dining plan to get the Bistro Buffalo Chicken Panini, which also came with a side of chips and a dessert or drink (I got a cannoli). The sandwich was very flavorful, but I will critique the bread for not actually being a panini. Hailey ordered the Hot Ham & Cheese Sandwich, and since both of our sandwiches were cut in half we decided to swap halves so we’d get to have one of each. Her sandwich was definitely the better of the two. Though a normal ham and cheese sandwich might not sound like much, it really nails the flavor due to the Gouda Cheese and Dijon mustard.
After eating, we boarded a bus to head to Epcot. The sky was starting to look gloomy, and by time we got on it had started to rain. As we drove to Epcot the rain kept getting heavier with more lightning, and by the time we got to the park we couldn’t even get out of the bus because of the storm. We waiting around for a while until the storm subsided a bit, and then we got off and bought some ponchos.
Once we entered the park, the first thing we did was have a meet and greet with Pluto. It was a fun little way to kick off our first park visit. After that, we went and rode Spaceship Earth, which was followed by doing single rider on Test Track. Both rides were very enjoyable, though I still do prefer the older version of Test Track.
After those two rides, we decided to spend some time in the World Showcase trying some different food. We first stopped at the Mexico pavilion, but instead of getting food we hopped on the Three Caballeros boat ride. Then we got back on track with our taste testing adventures by trying the Bubble Tea from China, the Frushi and Spicy Roll from Japan, the Cookie Butter Worms in Dirt from the Flavor Full Kitchen Flower and Garden Stand, and finally the Watermelon Cucumber Slushy from the Florida Fresh stand.
Once we were done eating, shopping and walking around World Showcase, we headed over to The Land pavilion to ride Living With the Land. This slow boat ride is heavily underrated in my opinion. You get to ride through the Walt Disney World Greenhouses to see all sorts of methods they use grow different plants, and each time I ride it I feel like I walk away with a bit more information than before. It’s one of the few experiences in Epcot that still holds true to the park’s original purpose without being too boring or educational. After Living With the Land, we rode The Land’s second best attraction: Soarin’ Over the World. It’s not that I don’t like Soarin’, because I think it’s a fine ride overall, but I feel like the experience isn’t as enjoyable as the original. The smells aren’t as memorable, the CGI and transitions are kind of ugly, and it feels like no matter where I sit the ride is always going to be a little distorted (even in the center).
Although Living With the Land is awesome, it’s still not the best thing in The Land. That title is held by The Garden Grill restaurant, which I got to eat at for the first time this trip. It is by far the most unique restaurant experience on WDW property, and is probably my second favorite restaurant there (I’ll reveal the first in a later trip report). Garden Grill is a family style buffet, meaning the waiter brings many different options to the table for you to try. I’ll post some pictures of our meal below. It is also a character dining option, and although I’m not a big fan of meet n’ greets, I must say that all the Garden Grill characters were excellent Mickey kept coming back to perform some hilarious antics on our waiter! On top of all that, the entire dining room spins very slowly to give you different views–a VERY unique experience. Overall, I loved Garden Grill and would recommend it to anyone looking to dine in Epcot.
After Garden Grill, the park was about to close, so we walked in the Mouse Gears store and shopped around for a little bit. Then, once the park was closing, we took the bus back to Saratoga Springs and got some rest.
Stay tuned for Day 2 of our trip to Walt Disney World, coming real soon!
. . . . .
Want to stay up to date with our latest theme park plans, reviews, and more? Be sure to follow us on Twitter @limitless_park and Instagram @Limitless_Park!