Stewart Goes Walkies is pleased to continue with Allen Lai’s exciting vacation in Disneyland.
The Animal Kingdom
The Animal Kingdom was opened in 1998 and is the latest addition to Disneyland. The theme park of 500 acres cost nearly $1 billion. It is divided into five parks, Discovery Island, Pandora – The World of Avatar, Africa, Asia, and Dinoland USA.
A must-visit is the Kilimanjaro Safaris, where you board an old beat-up Jeep. (The one we boarded reminded me of the old army surplus Land Rover that Stewart’s father used to drive). The safari takes you through the African Savannah, which is home to some 1,700 animals representing 250 different species throughout the park. One will have a chance to see many of them in their natural habitat.
The World of Avatar
Anyone who watched the film will be familiar with the amazing scenery.
Other rides include the Kali River Rapids, Expedition Everest, DINOSAUR, the newly added 2017 Avatar Flight of Passage is another must-ride. Inspired by James Cameron’s film Avatar Flight of Passage it is a thrilling attraction that allows guests to fly on the back of a banshee as they glide around Pandora. Being new, the visual 3D effect is stunning.
Universal Studios opened in the summer of 1990 to compete with the ever-popular Walt Disney World. It originally functioned both as a theme park and a production studio featuring a back lot tour as well as attractions based on popular Universal movies. Unfortunately, over the years, most of the production facilities have closed and so more attractions were added. Personally, I was looking for the old one. Nowadays, it’s just another theme park.
However, still, many rides and attractions are very interesting. To name a few, Imagine casting spells with a wand like Harry Potter, becoming a mischievous Minion, or being in the middle of an intergalactic showdown with the Autobots and Decepticons. Maybe you’d like to journey with Shrek, race with the crew from Fast & Furious, or fight aliens with the Men in Black. Sadly, during our visit, the Bourne Stuntacular, was not available. Luckily, the old Indiana Jones Stunt show is still there.
During the week, we visited six theme parks under a brutally hot sun and occasional thunderstorms, The daily routine was, 7 am wake-up call, breakfast, and getting the kids ready. Having dinner at a Theme restaurant where the kids can dine with their favourite characters. Return by late evening, and finish the day with a pool visit.
The weather was hot. During the day in was in the mid-30s plus the humidity, which for us from the north is quite tough. On an average day we walked over 20 thousand steps and some days over 30 thousand. (SGW – I’ll shut up now about my 8,000 steps daily average). And every day we took over 12 rides/attractions.
Disney and Orlando have never lost their magic. There’s something for everyone regardless of age. Together, we had such a wonderful time. Being able to keep up with the kids and getting to know them more every day, it was more than what we could ask for.
If you ever decided to live your childhood all over again this is the place to do it. The moment you step into the theme park, it’s like another world, people are laughing, in joy. Of course, more than often, you will hear parents lose their cool and scream at the kids, telling them to keep moving, etc. But overall, just seeing so many happy kids is already a joy.
By the way, COVID doesn’t seem to exist there, There was no mention of any social distancing, and face masks, if any, are printed with Disney characters. It’s not cheap, but hey, you can’t take it away with you. Enjoy life while one can, Carpe Diem.
Once again, Stewart Goes Walkies is very grateful to our old friend, Allan Lai for another of his excellent travelogues. I visited Disneyland in Anaheim, California, in 1966 with my parents. On the same trip, we also visited Knotts Berry Farm in Buena Park. To be perfectly honest, while I don’t remember much about either visit (I think I was 13 years old at the time), I recall at the time being more impressed with the latter.
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