November 7, 2012

A visit to New Fantasyland

This weekend I was lucky enough to get a preview of the New Fantasyland area in the Magic Kingdom. I knew this weekend was cast member previews only, but I was determined to see the area while we were at Disney World.

My family and I stopped by the entrance to New Fantasyland our first evening at Disney and talked to the cast members who were stopping guests from entering the area. They suggested we try first thing in the morning when fewer cast members would be at the previews. So, the next morning we were at the park before opening and ran right to New Fantasyland. My husband and I spotted the most "senior"-looking cast member. He asked if we were there for the cast member preview and I said, "I'm here to beg!" We gave him a whole spiel about getting in and he looked at my husband and said, "She's never going to let you hear the end of this if I don't let you in, right?" So, this super cast member told the rest of the cast members we were cleared to go in! (I was like a crazy person at this point, I was so excited!)

New Fantasyland is beautiful! The attention to detail is simply amazing.  Our first stop was the Under The Sea, Voyage of the Little Mermaid attraction.  This is a pretty traditional Disney attraction that takes guests on a musical ride (on a sea shell) through different scenes from the Little Mermaid.  We thought the attraction was great and will become a "must do" attraction. My boys wanted to ride over and over.  (Fortunately we were the only ones there, so the cast members let us...)

 
 Walk past Prince Eric's castle and through a fantastic nautical world as you approach the ride.

 
 
Here are a few shots from inside the attraction.

Next, we headed over to meet Belle at Storytime with Belle.  I'm glad we got to see this without waiting too long, because for us, this was probably a one time experience.  After walking through Maurice's cottage (very cute) you are magically transported to the Beast's castle.  Once inside, guests get to take part in a reenactment of the Beauty and the Beast story.  Belle comes out and participates in the show.  After, the guests who participated get a photo with Belle and a bookmark.  It was cute, but for children who are too shy to ever go up in front of a group (like mine) they just have to sit and watch Belle and don't get to meet her.  My kids were clearly disappointed.

You get a great view of the Beast castle from outside of Maurice's cottage

 Maurice's cottage

This is as close as we got to Belle

By now we were starving, so we stopped in Gaston's Tavern for some cinnamon rolls.  Yum.  The pub is fantastic!  The menu is small (roasted pork shanks, drinks, snacks), but the themeing is amazing.  We especially loved the statue out front that reads, "Tribute to Gaston - An extravagantly generous gift to the humble people of my village.  From me, Gaston."

  

 And, yes, there are antlers in ALL of his tavern's decorating

After our snack, we stopped in to see the merchandise at Bonjour! Village Gifts.  There was a nice selection of Beauty and the Beast and Magic Kingdom theme merchandise.


Finally, we were able to check out the new Be Our Guest restaurant.  It's a beautiful space, that unfortunately didn't photograph that well.  But, here are some pictures we took:

 

We really loved the new area of Fantasyland.  It was really beautiful and I think the restaurants and attractions will be a nice addition to the Fantasyland area.  

What are you most excited about in this new area?

Amy



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