Orlando still an amazing city. Although we stayed in the touristy/touristie (sp?) parts of the city by heading to Sea World/Aquatica and nearby areas, it is such a beautiful and busy city. Clean, orderly, green, new, refreshing...just some of the adjectives that come to mind.
Got to Aquatica just as the busy part of the day was winding down. Got to Orlando around 3pm and after checking in at the Hilton Garden Inn, we were in the water by 4pm. The kids were so excited.
First, my mother unknowingly almost got taken at the ticket counter. They sold her full price tickets at 4pm...little did she know that for $14 more dollars we could all have annual passes. That is $14 more dollars for everyone NOT p/person. So...we look to come back soon. Then we headed to rent some lockers...Leandro as usual running around behind things gave us a 20 second scare. With bathing suits on and the kids ready to go...we started on our way to the first kid friendly ride.
The first one was a lazy river ride. Got the kids some life jackets and they loved it!! We all got on top of the floats and April had Kensey, I had Leandro. We floated for about 10 to 15 minutes squirting around and floating backwards, forwards, spinning, etc. The kids wanted to go again...but we had to keep moving.
We passed by several rides that looked amazing, after checking 42 inches minimum - Kensey = 40 inches. So then we went to the kids play area...AMAZING! The place was pretty huge and tons of kids running around. Everything was little; little steps, little hand rails, little squirt guns...but the spaces were large enough for us to get in there with the kids. They had tons of slides to choose from, tons of water splashing around EVERYWHERE, they were in little water park heaven. We spend a good couple of hours here...the kids did not want to leave as usual. Mother was brave enough to keep the kids solo for a bit, then April and I sneaked off to go on a racing slide. 8 people go at the same time on a huge water slide that goes in circles and ends in a 75 to 100 foot steep drop. When you come out of the circle(ing) and twisty section you dont know if you are in first or last - you cant see anyone else racing with you. But then at the drop off - it opens up and wham I was in first place. I knew they wouldnt catch me at the drop off - FIRST PLACE!!!!
We then hurried off to find mother and see how she was doing. We were glad to see the kids were fine and having a good time. We then went on a rapid river run...mother held Leandro and the rest of us with life jackets just hurried off down the river. Pretty cool river run with rapids, squirty sections that got your face drenched, and we floated through the rapids. Again, the kids loved it - we went around maybe 6 times on it - and the run was a good 10 to 15 minute ride.
We ended the stay at the park around 8:30pm and headed back to the hotel to get dry and get changed.
TIPS for those that want to go: I would recommend never getting the all day pass. Get the 2pm discount and you'll still be able to go through the whole park and do all the rides. The park opens til late, half a day is more than enough to go through the whole park.
We got ready at the Hilton Inn really fast and then headed to Cafe Tu Tu Tango. It was a 10 minute car ride in a trendy area of Orlando. Tons of restaurants, lights, ppl walking around, etc.
When you first walk in to Cafe Tu Tu Tango (CTTT) there are two artists painting outside. You can see all their art and they are very chatty and friendly. They dont try to sell you anything but the art was very beautiful. Kensey in particular liked the guitar one of the artists was painting. We called ahead (in the morning) so we went ahead of the walk ins and got seated fairly fast. As soon as we got our table, the Bolivian dancers started dancing!! Kensey and April immediately went down to see them. Kensey was in awe - the dancing was beautiful. The girl dressed all in white and so was the man dancer. After about 10 minutes of dancing they got the crowd started by doing a congo line (the Bolivian version) then they had 10 ppl including all of us on the congo line all throughout the restaurant to beautiful rithmic music. After the conga line they all got in a big circle and the kids danced in the middle while parents proudly took photographs. So far so good. The atmosphere was great, the artists and dancers were great, the music was excellent...lets just see about the food!
The food tasted delicious but was small portions. We got steak skewers and I got carne asada - food, again, tasted great...but the portions were very very small - a bit dissappointing. All in all, I'll give this place a 5 star rating. We may not have chosen the right plates for our apetites.
I would come again to this restaurant for sure...the shows were cool, April got a reading from a tarot reading, the kids enjoyed it, the food was good, the service was good as well. Very cool!!