Star Island Resort & Club
We got there around 5 pm after driving from Miami. But prior to that we had to get up very early in the morning because of the collapse of the bridge connecting Caracas to the airport, so it was like 3 hours in a taxi to get to the airport around 4 am. Take our AA flight at 7 am to Miami and then the drive to Orlando. Thanks to that we were pretty tired, got some food at Chili's and went to the hotel.
The first day we got up late, went to IHOP for breakfast and headed to the malls..... sometimes I don't know what's worst, the scariest roller coaster or go shopping to the malls!. Late night we also went to a Publix and got some groceries for the week.
First big day it was at Universal complex. I hadn't been to Islands Of Adventure before so we got our tickets at 9 am and enjoyed the whole park. Starting with Hulk and Spiderman (one of my favorites). I admitted, I passed Dr. Doom Fearfall. My wife got soaked in Popeye & Bluto's Bilge-rat Barges but I was luckier, anyhow we had to buy a sweater for her. Jurassic Park gets you into the movie and the River Adventure is great with the fall and the T-Rex at the end. The Dragons, Ice and Fire (we rode both) and Hulk were my first big thrill roller coasters and they were awesome. Poseidon show it was great (my other favorite) and Sindbad was an ok stunt show. Around 4 pm we headed to Universal Studios (we were there for the holidays 2004) and went direct to our favorites: The Mummy, psychological thriller as they call it is real cool, you go forward, backwards and many more surprises. And Shrek 4-D, Shrek is my favorite animated movie. At 7 pm back to the hotel and get ready for a 5 star dinner at Emeril's Restaurant. The best lamb and the best white chocolate cheesecake I ever had. Great finish for a great day.
Another shopping day
Today we hit the malls again. We started at the Premium Outlets, here you find great brands and stuff at great deals. Kinda outdoor mall good for walking. Later we went to the Mall At The Millenia, the "luxurious" mall as they call it, which is true. Here everything is spectacular and shining, the millenia details on the floor is real nice. We had a great meal at The Cheesecake Factory and the best of course, the dessert, they will never dissapoint you.
Today we're very excited because it was our first time in SeaWorld after hearing many many good comments about the park, and they were all right. SeaWorld is a great park, the shows are great Pets Ahoy! with the animals, Odyssea very artistic (kinda Cirque Du Soleil) and our favorite Blue Horizons, its original score is wonderful and powerful. Kraken is a big thrill roller coaster we rode it 3 times and also got our framed picture. Journey to Atlantis unfurtunately was closed that week.... too bad. We ate at the Spice Mill which was real good and got some chicken tenders kid meal just to have our Shamu shapped lunch box, our inner child!. Anheuser Busch Hospitality Center was also great, beautiful place specially for the free beer. The horses are beautiful. My wife loved the Penguin Encounter, she loves penguins and wanted to take one home!. We closed our SeaWorld day with the Shamu show, speechless. Overall, I would say it was the best park we visited.
Baseball and Downtown Disney day, play ball!
At mid morning we headed west to Lakeland where Tigertown is located, Florida home of the Detroit Tigers for spring training games. I love baseball, I'm a huge Cincinnati Reds fan and having the chance to see them play for the first time ever no matter it was a training game, it was a great experience for me, and adding the fact of watching some Venezuelan players on a MLB uniform in both team, out of this world to me!. It was my wife first ball game ever. We had some beer, stadium food, cheered for my team and for our players, talked baseball with fans sitting next to us, enjoying a baseball game in the land where baseball was born, it was a real great experience to me, awesome. That evening we decided going to Downtown Disney, nice place to walk, take some pictures, visit the stores, have something to eat and drink. We met some friends at the Wolfgang Puck Express where they invited us some pizza and beer, only the beer was good. Ghirardelli is a must in Downtown Disney, one of the best chocolate you could have and the best hot chocolate for sure. Here we bought some assorted chocolates and chocolate powder for the in-laws!. We had a great time at the baseball and Downtown Disney with our friends and drove back to the hotel almost at midnight tired and with a huge smile in our faces.
Disney MGM Studios day
After breakfast we headed to Walt Disney World, the happiest celebration on earth, to MGM Studios, I had big expectations about it and was not let down. We got early in the morning so we had time to enjoyed it all, almost. Only attraction we missed it was the Backlot Tour. Indiana Jones is ok, my wife said it's the same she saw her first time at MGM with her family like 15 years ago. Little Mermaid is a cute thing show and Beauty and the Beast is a great show. Now the big thrills, Hollywood Tower was a great ride (twice) and is like they say, you can ride it again and again and won't be the same. Aerosmith Rock N' Roller coaster, the video with the guys of the band is real good and the launching is great but the ride itself is pretty soft, good thing is Aerosmith music during the ride. We rode it a second time later but we were in the last seats and it was a bumpy ride. I'm a Star Wars fan so I enjoyed Star Tours even though isn't a big thing. Of course I had a lot of pictures of Star Wars and my t-shirt. The Muppets show is ok and funny, different to other shows like the ones they have in Universal. Lights, Motors, Action! is a great stunt show they brougth from Disney Paris, confirming what we all know, best test drivers or pilots are from Europe. The big ending is Fantasmic, above all parks, the best show ever. It's huge, beautiful, fantastic, colorful, you have lasers, fire, water fans which are movie screens, etc, etc. The best show by far, just get there early at least 30 minutes before the show.
Coldplay concert !
The main reason for our trip we could say, this trip was put together around our Coldplay concert, which was exactly our wedding anniversary day, March 4. We got our tickets ahead of time since November 2005. We spent the day in downtown Orlando, doing some last hour shopping and printing our pictures. At 5 pm headed to the TD Waterhouse Center, once inside the excitment was incredible. Their songs are real good and the show is even better, Chris Martin's charisma brings a lot to their shows. Very important, their lyris are not those silly lyrics like most of the bands today, theirs have a meaning. Coldplay is a mature band. My favorite performances that day: Talk, Speed of Sound and of course, Clocks. My wife favorites: Talk and Fix You.
Needless to say is the saddest day and there's not much to talk about. We had almost everything packed the last day, so we took our things and drove to Miami to take our flight back home and thinking about the next time we come to Orlando.