|Our main reason for going to the Orlando area was to visit with my half sister Virginia and her daughter Brenda. Virginia is my father’s daughter by his first wife, when his first wife died he married my mother and they had seven more children, I am the youngest and the only other girl. Although Virginia and I never lived in the same household we did find through this visit that we have many similar interests. The campground we picked for this week was the Lake Magic RV Resort just 2 miles down the road from Virginia and Brenda’s home. It is a nice park, really large with many park model homes. We would have been very pleased with our choice except for one big problem; the wi-fi worked for one day and then was down for repair the rest of the week, that didn’t make me very happy. But as far as the rest of our visit went, we had a really great time and did so much more that we had expected to do while there. Brenda works at Disney and she actually spent both of her days off this week taking us to some of the Disney attractions, she really loves her job and enjoys visiting the parks too. One morning we all went to Celebration, a master-planned community developed by Disney in the late 1990’s. All of the homes and shops are really lovely. We had breakfast on the patio of a café in downtown Celebration right near the lake.
After breakfast we headed out to the Wild Kingdom where we saw a 3-D movie called “It’s tough to be a bug”, it was so cute with great special effects. Then we went to a performance called “Festival of the Lion King”, a high-energy tribal celebration of the Lion King movie with music, dance and specialty acts. After that we saw a bird show called “Flights of Wonder” where we saw some pretty amazing birds and then we took a Safari trip though an African style savannah where giraffes, gazelles, elephants, rhinos and lions roam freely. We left the Animal Kingdom and drove to the Wilderness Lodge where Brenda works. We had dinner in the Whispering Canyon restaurant there. That was a really fun place but I must say there wasn’t much whispering going on there, something more like mass hysterics…….with stick horse races for the kids every so often and an interesting way to get the ketchup. The Wilderness Lodge is beautiful; it looks like a huge log cabin and has more than 700 rooms, the 7-story lobby has an 82-foot stone fireplace and open walkways to the rooms. It was starting to get dark when we took a boat ride to the Magic Kingdom where we saw the Electric Parade and an amazing fireworks display called Wishes, then we took another boat ride back to the Wilderness Lodge.
The next afternoon we went to the Fort Wilderness Resort where we took a bus ride to the Fort Wilderness Campground. That looks like a really neat place to stay and when we come back this way we will probably stay there. There are lots of activities for kids and also for those of us who are young at heart. Many of the campsites were already decorated for Halloween, lots with Disney characters.
Our next stop that evening was the BoardWalk Inn an elegant lakeside hotel fashioned after the seaside buildings of Atlantic City in the 1940’s. We strolled the Boardwalk and watched another fireworks display over Epcot.
I know we only made a tiny dent in the list of things to see and do at Disney but thanks to Brenda we were able to see and do things that we wouldn’t have been able to do on our own. There is a lot to be said for having your own private tour guide. When left on our own we went to several flea markets, gift shops and antique malls. All in all, we had a really enjoyable week with near perfect weather.