A theme park gift under $10? Theme Park Insider: 2016 Year in Review
We hit Manta upon entering, because we just decided to be tourists, and enjoyed the line and the ride, although we just threw our bags on top of the lockers (funny story about that at Universal in the next update).
After Manta, we started doing shows. My son plotted out all the shows, but not with proximity in mind. Soon we were at the Dolphin show, which was my 2nd-favorite. With our Platinum passes we had reserved seating which was good enough that we used it throughout the day.
After Dolphins we saw Penguins (love penguins), and then did a quick tour of the sea lion preserve area. We saw one sea lion push another off the wall, which was funny after we knew there were no injuries.
Then it was off to the Sea Lion Pirate show, with our all-time favorite warm-up act, the Mime. Better than the show, the highlight of which was when the heroine stuck her arm in the hole, and a shirted arm came out the other hole, at which point our Heroine proclaimed "I forgot to role up my sleeves".
Anyway, I then ran back to the car for my camcorder (tired of taping things on a camera), while parts of my family went to lunch without me; I also had my bag relocated at this point because I left it inside the park at the gate so I wouldn't have to re-bag-check. Easy enough to pick up at guest services, although they made me fill out a form.
After that it was a blur of shows. Something with crazy animals, and a "Shamu" show with almost no Shamu but lots of people prancing about that was pretty cool but still no real Shamu stuff; also some fisherman fell overboard and got married to a mermaid after watching the Kinetix show or something like that.
We must have gone through the Shark exhibit at some point, and then finally climbed aboard our 2nd ride, the Atlantis trip which was pretty cool but the line was rather long, since it had just rained and the mermaid show had just let out.
After that it was ice cream, and then
off to the 7:15 parody show, which was the best park show I've seen. My daughter exclaimed while leaving that it covered all the important points of all the other shows, and made her want to ask for her day back. And of course, the Pirate Mime was there as well.
After that show, we took in the Kracken, with the lines a bit shorter than earlier in the day. That had to be the WORST loading team I have ever seen on a coaster. It seemed to take twice as long as it takes the Kings Dominion Dominator squad. Especially with the quick queue, and them having to load that all up and get them strapped in before they open the other side. I could have done better without training.
Oh well, after that we were leaving, but not before spending a small fortune on a shirt and hat, and then of course doing "just one more thing", which ended up being a front-of-the line ride on Manta for my son and I while the girls did the under-Manta aquarium.
We got to our check-in after 10:30pm, and found that rather than two queen beds, we had what appeared to be a king bed and a full-size sleeper sofa. After much angst and discussion with the resort, we learned that they had misspoke and it was a queen sleeper, and they provided us enough padding for the sofa to make it almost reasonable. That was after going through lists of things they simply couldn't do, which included letting us sleep on the floor and in our car. I was very tired at that point.
We finally crashed at midnight, having decided that we would simply skip the 9am opening at Universal and brave the crowds like all the suckers we usually laugh at. But that's for the next report, when the Reichley Family Does Universal Wrong.
Pets ahoy is the pet show..
Walt Disney World
Tokyo Disney Resort