SeaWorld was the girls' least favourite park, but that was partly our fault. First thing when we got there Nathan and I, Linsay (Nathan's sister) and her husband Shaun, went to ride Manta, the new crazy fun rollercoaster. You're strapped in sitting down, and then the floor drops and you're tilted forward until you're completely horizontal, so you're flying through that roller coaster! We were the second group to get on the ride that day, but it took a little bit because they had to run a few more test rides before they let us start riding (scared much?). The kids weren't impressed with waiting since they literally had to just sit and wait with Nathan's parents, as there were too many kids and not enough adults for them to go do something while they waited.
Next we went to see the dolphin show "Blue Horizons" at the Whale & Dolphin Theatre. It was absolutely amazing! This was by far the best show at SeaWorld hands down! So many dolphin tricks, constantly something to look at, great people tricks too - diving and some aerial acrobatics as well. If you only see one show at SeaWorld, this is the one to see.
Next we went to see "Clyde & Seamore Take Pirate Island" at the Sea Lion & Otter Stadium. This show was a disappointment for us. I don't know if it was because the dolphin show was so good, or if this one was bad, but none of us really liked it. We kept thinking - it must get better, but it never did. There were 3 actors in this one and 3 animals. The animals did some good tricks I guess, they just weren't as entertaining or spectacular looking as the dolphins. And the show was supposed to be a comedy, but the actors weren't overly funny. We would not go see this again.
Then us adults went on Kraken, the other crazy roller coaster - while the kids again waited rather impatiently.
After this we had lunch. This was a somewhat frustrating experience because they have no lids or straws for their cups. Seriously. Now, I'm all about saving the planet and the whales and what have you, but saving my sanity takes priority at an amusement park. Four kids and no lids/straws makes for an unhappy mama. So, take note and bring your own!
We had to hurry lunch in order to make the Shamu show "Believe" as it was a bit of a trek to Shamu Stadium. We made it a couple minutes late. Also - take note - for all these shows, the soak zone signs are there for a reason - if you don't want to get wet, don't sit there! :) We stayed far away from the soak zones! This show was pretty good, still not as spectacular as the dolphins though. We were sitting fairly far away, so maybe if we had better seats we may have appreciated the sheer size of the whales more, but the tricks itself were just more fun at the dolphin show.
After this we went to the kid section, but by this point the girls were really hot and tired and a bit bored, so I think they maybe did one or two rides before they decided they just wanted to go home and swim in the pool.So, next time, we would skip the adult rides, and probably do more of the zoo type activities which I think they would've liked better - and the dolphin show of course! :)
In the evening we went for supper at Tony Roma's and then went back to Prime Outlets for a little more shopping.
Day 7 (Wednesday) - Magic Kingdom
Today our little family headed out to Magic Kingdom again. We had to take the ferry across cause the monorail wasn't running for some reason. Here's a picture of the castle from the ferry.
We went straight back to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and rode that thing about 4 times in a row. We also collected some child swap passes (cause Jacob couldn't go) to use later when it got busier. We were there early so we virtually walked on the ride all 4 times. Then Emma, Sophia and I went on Splash Mountain (wearing ponchos! Yep, we cheat and are proud of it!) while Nathan took Jacob and Olivia on the Magic Carpets of Aladdin.
Then we headed for the Tomorrowland section of Magic Kingdom which we've never even been in before (it's more boy oriented) and straight for the Tomorrowland Speedway - where Jacob got to drive a racecar (not sure if it can actually be called a racecar considering how slow it went!). He loved it. You can barely see his cap peeking over the driver's seat. Then we headed into ToonTown where Jacob got to ride his first ever rollercoaster (our local mini rollercoaster not withstanding)- Goofy's Barnstormer! He just BARELY cleared the height restriction. He seemed to really like it. The girls loved this ride last time we came to Disney, and they still liked it now - but after riding Big Thunder Mountain, this one felt really short and just not as good (all true!).
We then walked through Mickey's house and Minnie's house which the girls just loved! They're doing a lot of renovations in Fantasyland and ToonTown at Magic Kingdom and I think these houses are going to be taken down.
Jacob also really enjoyed Peter Pan and Winnie the Pooh (using the FastPass system is crucial, especially when you have young kids that aren't going to survive constant long waits in line).
After the kids were done with rides, we headed back to the house for a quick lunch, and swimming in the pool! We finally took the girls' hairdo's out after this swim.
We all went to TGI Fridays for supper and then our little family headed back to the Magic Kingdom for some more rides (guess which ones?!) and to watch the fireworks and the parade. Looks who's tired while waiting for the parade!
Since the fireworks were first, the park seemed to empty out a bit before the parade, and it didn't seem too crazy getting out of the park afterwards. When the fireworks are last, the show is over and then everyone heads straight for the park gates. But when the parade is last, it's a long route, and it ends at different times for different people, which makes for an easier exit. Makes sense to me anyway!
Anyway, we had missed out on the fireworks during our trip two years ago, resulting in many tears, so I was determined that we wouldn't miss them this time. It's an excellent show. It starts with Tinkerbell flying down from the castle, it's narrated by Jimminy Crickett with a storyline and music to go along with the fireworks, which at one point are even in heart shapes. So fun!