Today was Isabella’s birthday! We woke up and got ready to go to Epcot. After getting dressed and eating breakfast, we headed over to the Contemporary to catch the monorail.
Of course there were a few photo ops along the way. Even though we were early getting to the park, it was still pretty crowded. We saw Pluto immediately after the entrance and had to stop. Isabella warmed up to him even more than Santa Goofy and liked touching his nose.
While some of us were using a Fastpass+ for Soarin, the rest went to meet Chip and Dale. I didn’t know if Isabella would go by herself to a character! We went to the Character Spot, where she got pictures with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. Isabella officially became character-obsessed!
We headed over to World Showcase next. After a little shopping in the stores at the entrance to WS, we made our way to Mexico to try our first snack, churros. We then went into the pyramid and rode the Gran Fiesta boat tour. Isabella liked looking at all the jewelry in the gift shops inside the pyramid. Outside, Donald Duck dressed in Mexico attire was meeting, so we hopped in line to see him! He was great – he acted like he fainted when Isabella blew him a kiss. I think he was one of the best characters we met the whole trip.
We traveled on to Norway, where we looked through the Stave Church with a Frozen exhibit and got our second snack, a sweet almond pretzel.
In China, we played with the animal marionette puppets at an outdoor gift shop. The snacks at Joy of Tea were not that appealing, and most of the tea was caffeinated, so we skipped it.
We stopped for a while in the African Trading Post. Isabella liked banging on the drums and sitting in the jeep.
In Germany, we got some caramel corn. The first batch was pretty stale tasting, so we asked for another, which was unfortunately not much better. Not one of the most successful snacks ever.
Italy was the first country we stopped at that we saw street entertainers. There were a group of ladies doing an act all dressed in red, the Ziti Sisters. We got some gelato as our fourth snack and sat to eat it in the back of the Italy pavilion. After Italy, we stopped at the American pavilion where Isabella ended up taking a nap.
We moved onto Japan where we got kakigori as our snack. It is basically like a snowcone, which is one of my favorite foods ever. We watched the drummers perform, which was really neat. Then, we saw the Holidays Around the World performance where a Japanese lady told the story of daruma dolls.
By that time, we had to head back to get ready for our dinner reservation at 5:45, so we took the boat across the lake from Morocco, where we saw a belly dancer, to Future World. We rode the monorail back to Bay Lake Tower, changed clothes, and walked over to the California Grill in the Contemporary (see my full review here).
The atmosphere was great, but the food was very underwhelming. It was neat to see the castle all lit up in sparkly ice lights from the roof top. We saw a bride and groom, and Isabella made friends with a little boy from France. After dinner, we went back down to the lobby of the Contemporary and met Chip and Dale dressed as toy soldiers! They were adorable. We looked around in the gift shops and then went to our villa so that Isabella could open birthday presents. We finished off the night with another fireworks display from the BLT Skybridge. Isabella even stayed awake this time!