As a tradition-heavy family, our list of Disney Must-Haves is fairly extensive. Must try a new restaurant. Must purchase an entire year's worth of soap at Basin. Must watch the entire loop of updates on the Disney Resort in-room TV station (did I mention we're also lunatics?). So it's impossible for me to narrow it down to just one thing, but I've outlined my biggest must-haves by category:
Food: I've posted before about my family's tradition of trying a new restaurant each time (next up is Citricos), but our love affair with Disney dining goes further than that. There are certain food items that have wormed their way into our hearts, making us crave them once we're home and establishing themselves as a priority on any trip. The popcorn in Disney's Hollywood Studios (it's better than in any other park, I swear - try the cart by the Sorcerer Hat). The pretzel bread at Le Cellier, which is almost worth sitting through the subpar lunch you have to eat in order to get it. The Rice Krispie balls, freshly made, from the Main Street Confectionary, which will make you forget all about the packaged treats you find everywhere else. And I don't think I need to explain the allure, the power, of the Dole Whip.
Shopping: Aside from the soap stockpiling I mentioned above, this can be summed up in one word: pins. We do not trade pins. We buy them. We horde them. We display them on corkboards in our homes. And we cannot go to WDW without buying at least five apiece. My favorite spot? The shop in the Contemporary Resort. Great selection, without the crowds at other locations.
Attractions: Obviously, we try to do as many attractions as possible, and we have our favorites that we ride multiple times, but Space Mountain is really my desert-island attraction. I once detailed my love in a post for DISTherapy, but it was my first roller coaster, and it's still my favorite. There are faster rides, scarier rides, newer rides, but Space Mountain is a classic that I have to experience on every trip. In 2009, when the ride was closed for refurbishment, it was like we were missing a piece of the WDW experience. I still haven't fully recovered.
Magic: And then, of course, there's the big finale - the fireworks. The unofficial rule is: if we can, we WILL watch Wishes. That means seeking out dining/drinking locations with a view of the show, or making a special trip into the Magic Kingdom at night. We even tried the Wishes Dessert Party (with mediocre results). On our next trip, we're staying at Bay Lake Tower (which did not have any Magic Kingdom view rooms available), and I'm very excited to catch Wishes from the Top of the World Lounge. Is it Wishes we love, or just collecting views from different vantage points? Probably a little of both, but Wishes - any way you slice it - is a definite must-do.
What's on your Disney Must-Do list?
Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is DISTherapy. Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:
1st Stop ~ Magical Mouse Schoolhouse
2nd Stop ~ Return to Disney
3rd Stop ~ The Disney Chick
4th Stop ~ DISTherapy
Final Stop ~ Delightfully Disney
* Of Mouse and Man
* The Agony of Making Disney Dining Reservations
* The Wishes Dessert Party - Worth the Money?