OK – So first of all, I am so used to calling this place “Downtown Disney”. Does anyone remember that or was I hallucinating this whole time? Disney Springs sounds way more boujee than Downtown Disney – but rightfully so, it is pretty fantastic.
Disney Springs is essentially a shopping and eating district. It is not an amusement park and you do not need to pay admission, you can park and walk right up and enjoy! What you do need to pay for is everything else. There are really cool themed restaurants, Disney shops and other shops (not Disney related), and there is even a huge hot air balloon ride that you can get on Groupon for like $11 USD! The balloon takes you up 400 ft. in the air. We really wanted to do this but it was closed when we arrive sadly.
There SO many shops, but my FAVE was the lego shop. There are wicked cool lego creations you can take pics beside and there’s even a sea monster lego IN THE LAKE! You can purchase cool lego sets or buy your lego pieces individually along the big lego-piece wall (idk if that’s what they really call it lol). They also have a shop where you can design your very own t-shirt, but they were all out of Marco’s size when we went (boo!).
SO – we didn’t actually eat here – BUT they do have lots of really cool restaurants and some are themed to the nines (Rainforest Cafe!). There is a lot to choose from and the scenery and atmosphere is so nice here – just like any Disney Park, or really anywhere in Florida for that matter (anywhere with Palms is good for us!). The food smelled so good, but we had dinner waiting for us at the house so we decided to pass up some noms on this day trip.
On our drive back home from Orlando, Florida we decided to take a quick stop in Washington, D.C. We drove past it on the way down, and since it is somewhere we’ve never been we really wanted to go check it out. We didn’t have a LOT of time, so we only stayed in Washington, D.C. for about 3 hours total, but we got to see a whole lot!
Washington traffic is crazy! It’s stressful enough driving in a city you are unfamiliar with, but pair that with lots of traffic and I was STRESSIN’! We found parking alright smack in the middle of everything which was nice because we could just walk around to all the attractions. Everything [worthy of sight-seeing] is located really close together in Washington, so we were able to see the sights even in crunch mode.
It was pretty quiet and calm when we went, despite the traffic (weird, I know). I’m not sure if it was because it was rainy, because it was a weekend, or because they had a DC Bike Ride going on – but it was really nice. There weren’t too many people which meant we could get some pretty cool pictures without too many people getting in the shots (it still happened though, of course). We also really loved that everything was within walking distance of each other, can every city be like this, please?
The Jefferson Memorial
This place was breathtaking. It’s so huge when you are standing at the bottom of the steps looking up. Once inside, it is really quiet and there are all sorts of quotes written on the walls of the memorial. There’s also a giant Thomas Jefferson inside! Also, there is marble like ALL OVER Washington, I wanted to take some home with me HAHA. Did I mention the attractions are mostly free? We didn’t pay a cent while in Washington.
DID YOU KNOW: EPCOT stands for Experimental Prototype City Of Tomorrow? It was initially supposed to be a real experimental city where new technology would be tested and people would actually reside there, but when Walt died the idea was scrapped and here we are with beautiful EPCOT theme park!
This park is hands-down my all-time fave Disney Park. Why? There is SO much to see that the World Showcase itself is worth the money. As you walk between the pavilions showcasing numerous countries around the world you almost feel submerged in the countries culture, music, food, and atmosphere. Another fun fact: Anyone working in the pavilions in EPCOT must be from the actual country itself. Here is a break-down of our fave pavilions:
With Spanish music playing, Mexican food being served and the gorgeous scenery, you almost feel as if you’re in Mexico (except the pyramids are a LOT bigger IRL). Here they have little shops and restaurants as well as a meet and greet spot where you can snap a pic with Donald Duck in a Sombrero!
Again, the architecture, music and food is outstanding and they really do a great job at keeping it as realistic as possible. We didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the Chinese pavilion, but you can grab a pic with Mulan here and sight-see around some of the buildings!
Gorgeous architecture, really yummy food and traditional music bring the Japanese pavilion to life. It’s very inspiring and makes me want to travel to go see the real deal! This pavilion has some shops and restaurants you can check out too!
You guessed it – BEER HEAVEN! The architecture was incredible, the music was beautiful and the beer was SO TASTY. Not-so-fun-fact: They asked us for our passports as a form of ID while buying drinks here, I’ve never had that happen anywhere else as usually our Drivers License is sufficient. Here you can meet Snow White or enjoy a German Buffet and Yodeler!
EPCOT is incredibly beautiful. They have some great rides too, like Test Track, Soarin’, and the new Frozen ride. They also seasonally have gorgeous garden hedges sculpted into your favorite Disney Characters and decorated with colorful flowers. The monorail can also be spotted transporting people to and from parks and resorts which gives EPCOT a cool futuristic vibe.