Take a virtual audio trip in this installment of the WDW-Memories podcast, brought to you in immersive binaural / 3D / spatial sound, experiencing another magical memory from Walt Disney World. In today’s memory, you will join us as we begin reliving our most recent trip from last month.
Well hello and welcome to the WDW-Memories Podcast where together we relive that Walt Disney World Magic. My name is Lou and I’ll once again be your host on this magical adventure.
It’s finally here. The start of some all-new days in Walt Disney World. I’m so excited to share with you all the fun we just had while visiting Walt Disney World last December. It was so great to finally be back in Walt Disney World. The colors in the parks seemed more vibrant. The air and weather couldn’t have been more amazing (we were in shorts every day). The special Christmas decorations were such a great touch of magic. My only regret is not taking a little time off to explore the resorts. But enough of all that, let’s jump into the excitement of a new start in the parks.
Arriving at Epcot does not have that same magical experience of a grand reveal that the Magic Kingdom does, but Spaceship Earth is so iconic, and with it so close to the front of the park, you know you’re there almost immediately. The security checkpoint was better, and they’re a little less random about who they select as they’ve gotten smarter with the scans. I will say, once I began pulling my camera and everything out of our pockets and holding them in front of me, I stopped getting selected for screening, which is a HUGE time saver.
We’ll start our adventure on a beautiful Sunday morning in December of 2021. The day began with an early wake-up in our hotel in Valdosta, Georgia, about 3 hours north of Orlando. We drove all day Saturday and stopped there for a rest, figuring we can still be close to the 11AM opening for Epcot if we got up and got going at a decent hour. We’ll join our memory as we are driving in from the Sunshine turnpike along Interstate 4 in Orlando. We’re watching for signs, and getting more excited as we see things we could get to ride. In no time, we’re at the parking entrance, but because we’re here close to 11AM, there’s a line to get in. We scan our magic bands and are soon through and on our way to our parking spot. Once the van is in park, we spring from the car, grab our backpacks, snacks, water bottles, and sunscreen and make our way to the gate. It’s a little after 11AM and we’re only a few rows from the front, so the walk is quick to get to the security checkpoint. They’ll go through my bag (because I hadn’t figured out the holding stuff out trick yet) and then we’ll head for the customer service office. We purchased length of stay tickets for this trip without park hopper, and because our account already has the non-expiring park hoppers on them, we want to avoid a repeat of what happened to us before where the wrong tickets were used. It costs us probably 20 minutes in the parks, but it’s worth it in the long run so we can continue to return to the parks in the future.
Once we are squared away, we head to the gate and begin the check-in process. Traci is using her Apple watch which supposedly can be set up to just click through. It doesn’t work THAT easy because we loaded the kid’s cards on her account also, and it had a hard time not checking the wrong person in. The same thing happened to me as I tried to use my iPhone to check-in. After this, we just used the magic bands to get into the parks, it was so much faster and worked on the first try.
Once through the gate, we’ll consult the Touring Plans Lines app to figure out where we should go first, and it suggests Norway. So we head to the right of Spaceship Earth and up the walled construction area of World Celebration (I’m not used to these new lands, it’s always going to just be Future World to me). We’re routed over by the Land Pavilion in World Nature, and make our way along the backside of the construction until we can get a great view of Spaceship Earth behind us and the Christmas Tree before us. This is where we’ll stop and get our first family photo to commemorate this long-anticipated trip finally happening, and where we’ll stop the memory for today.
Today’s memory is in binaural once again, so I’d suggest putting those headphones on to fully immerse yourself in the memory.
Now that you have your headphones on, let’s join my family as we finally are able to take our first steps in Walt Disney World in over 3 years.