Orlando Journals

A Great Time in Orlando!

A September 2005 trip to Orlando by mlmeredith

Hilton Grand Vacations Club on International Drive Photo, Orlando, Florida More Photos
Quote: This is a great place to stay, and here are a few things to do while you're there.

A Great Time in Orlando!

Overview

Quote:
Discovery Cove - 5 minutes away from the HGVC on International Drive and Vineland, and by far the best bang for the buck of any park I've ever visited

If you're a Disney devotee, Animal Kingdom has the best mix of adult and kid attractions of all the parks in Disney World.

Quick Tips:

Best Way To Get Around:

Rent a car unless you're not in a hurry and on a serious budget. Orlando is a drive-around town.

Hilton Grand Vacations Club on International Drive

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Hilton Grand Vacations Club on International Dr."

Hilton Grand Vacations Club on International Drive Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
Best Things Nearby:Discovery CoveBest Things About the Resort:New, stylish, and very clean, with a marvelous pool areaResort Experience:At the time we visited the Hilton Grand Vacations Club (September of 2005), it was less than 2 years old. In fact, the building that we were in had only been open for 3 weeks! The one-bedroom unit we had was marvelous, roomy and well appointed. Some of the more notable aspects of the unit include a spacious bathroom with a full shower, a large Jacuzzi tub between the bathroom and bedroom, two TVs, granite countertops in the kitchen, and a screened-in lanai overlooking the lagoon. The resort has a large pool do...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 12, 2005

Hilton Grand Vacations Club on International Drive
8122 Arrezzo Way
Orlando, Florida 32821
(407) 465-2600

Bahama Breeze

Restaurant

Quote:
It has good service and excellent food for a corporate chain. I had the salmon and she had the prawns appetizer and soup. Neither of us was disappointed. And as a coincidental note, the hostess was the daughter of one of the concierges at the HGVC.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Bahama Breeze
8849 International Drive
Orlando, Florida 32819
(407) 248-2499

Chef Mickey's Restaurant

Restaurant | "Chef Mickey's "

Chef Mickey's Restaurant Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
We had breakfast there, which can be a pricey endeavor if you don't have kids that will fawn over the Disney characters that make visits to each table. The breakfast buffet is good, not spectacular, but with enough variety to satisfy everyone.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Chef Mickey's Restaurant
Disney's Contemporary Resort
Orlando, Florida
(407) WDW-DINE

Crystal Palace Restaurant

Restaurant | "Crystal Palace (character lunch and dinner)"

Crystal Palace Restaurant Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
Don't bother unless you have at least one child who will love collecting Disney character autographs! The buffet is okay, although I did appreciate the excellent selection of vegetable dishes, but it's still a buffet. That always leaves me a little less than impressed when the price exceeds $15, and this exceeds that threshold.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Crystal Palace Restaurant
Disney World Magic Kingdom
Orlando, Florida 32830
(407) 939-3463

Restaurant Marrakesh

Restaurant | "Marrakesh"

Quote:
It has excellent food, with a selection that will please adventurous eaters as well as the more timid types. The kids can be satisfied with spaghetti and meatballs, while the adults can have something a little more pleasing, like a Moroccan sampler. Oh yeah, and I enjoyed the live music and belly dancer as well.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Restaurant Marrakesh
Morocco Pavilion, Epcot
Orlando, Florida
(407) 939-3463

Disney's Animal Kingdom

Attraction | "Animal Kingdom"

Disney's Animal Kingdom Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
We love zoos, and the animal collection, along with its display here, is excellent. It doesn't rank with the overall diversity of a more serious zoo, like the London Zoo or the St. Louis Zoo, but it's still well worth the visit.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Disney's Animal Kingdom
Walt Disney World Resort
Orlando, Florida 32830
(407) 824-4321

Disney's Hollywood Studios

Attraction | "Disney's MGM Studios"

Disney's Hollywood Studios Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
This is still our favorite Disney park! We love the movies, both old and new. Seeing how they're made does little to subtract the magic of them. One show that we could do without, however, is the Extreme Stunt Spectacular (not to be confused with the Indiana Jones show). If you like loud, fast cars, you'll love it. If you're unimpressed with car chases, etc., have a nice dinner while the kids watch it.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Disney's Hollywood Studios
Walt Disney World
Orlando, Florida 32830
(407) 824-4321

Discovery Cove

Attraction

Discovery Cove Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
I love this place! It's the best park I've ever spent time at. The price might be a little off-putting, but the value that you receive is spectacular! We did the less expensive non-dolphin swim package, as we didn't think that $100 extra for spending 30 minutes with a dolphin was worth it (you might feel otherwise). But with all of the equipment and extras you receive (don't forget, you get 7 days admission to SeaWorld for the base price also), it's a great buy. It is a most un-Disney experience, one to be savored. Also, this park is very accommodating to people with disabilities, and it even has beach-friendly wheelchairs if needed.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 14, 2005

Discovery Cove
6000 Discovery Cove Way
Orlando, Florida 32821
(877) 557-7404

Snorkelling Photo, Orlando, Florida
Quote:
Okay, we're beginners at snorkeling. That means that we have neither the nerve nor the experience to be out in the open sea (yet). Discovery Cove (an adjunct park to SeaWorld) gives folks like us (or people with young children or disabilities) an opportunity to get up close and personal with tropical fish and full-size manta rays. The food is excellent, too, and included in the price of admission!