Thursday, June 27, 2013

First Day of Vacation

Ahhhh! There's absolutely nothing like the feeling of your first day of vacation!  After all of the anticipation (you can see my previous post on Pre-Trip Anticipation here), the first day of actual vacation is somewhat euphoric -- especially when it's a Disney vacation! Here is what we do on our first day of vacation.

We Get Up Early

Yeah, I know that seems counter-intuitive.  I mean, it's vacation, right?  Well, we like to maximize our time at the Walt Disney World Resort, so we always catch the earliest flight out.  Many years, this means a 6 A.M. flight.  Believe it or not, it's not so hard to wake up due to the overwhelming excitement!  Consider getting a hotel near the airport, which will allow you to sleep later, and may provide you with a free breakfast.  You also can then take advantage of the hotel's shuttle service, which is a nice perk.  And remember, you can always doze on the plane - well, if you aren't too excited to sleep, that it!

Hop the Magical Express and Check-In

The beauty of staying on-property at Disney is the convenience of Disney transportation and services.  No need to pick up your baggage; Disney will collect your checked belongings and deliver them directly to your hotel room!  Simply head to Concourse B on the lower level and follow the Mickey Mouse heads to the Magical Express area.  Already you'll feel the magic taking over as you board the bus.  There is entertainment courtesy of the overhead televisions, which help you to anticipate the fun that is yet to come!
The Magical Express drops you right at your hotel lobby, so simply enter and check in!  If you've taken advantage of Online Check In, everything will already be prepared for you.  Now, if you've taken an early flight, your room may not be ready yet.  Not to worry!  Disney will securely store your carry-on baggage so you can head straight to the parks, or if you prefer, to the pool!  A text message will alert you when your room is prepared, and then you can call to have all of your carry-ons delivered right to your door.  Talk about service!

Where to Next?

We love to start our Disney vacation at the Magic Kingdom.  This iconic park really embodies Disney World, and there's nothing like walking "right down the middle of Main Street, U.S.A." and taking it all in.  I know the urge to run and do everything at once is strong, but enjoy the moment.  Every single element tells a story.  Immerse yourself in it, and just enjoy that first-day-of-vacation feeling.  Now here's where you have a choice -- go left to Adventureland, or go right to Tomorrowland?  Although there isn't a correct answer, one of us typically grabs Fastpasses for Space Mountain, then we take a stroll down through Adventureland, taking in attractions along the way as the mood strikes us.  It's also usually getting close to lunchtime, so we grab lunch at one of our favorite counter-service locations - Pecos Bill's or Columbia Harbor House

Don't Overdo It -- It's Only Day 1!

You'll have lots of "first day of vacation" energy, but don't overdo it!  If you've made dining reservations, you may want to head back to the room for a bit first.  Get your luggage, unpack, and then settle down for a delicious Disney dinner!  Got more energy?  Maybe you'll head back to the parks, or maybe a nighttime swim is the perfect cap to the evening.  Either way, make sure to get plenty of rest so you can do it all over again on Day 2.

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