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Unread 19 May 19, 07:33 PM  
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2littleboys
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Just back... a brief rundown.

We are just back from another fantastic holiday and wanted to record my thoughts and experiences, I don't like to class anything as a low as I always class another holiday to our favourite place as a blessing although there were a couple of minor issues but nothing that ruined our experience.

In addition to the normal 4 of us we took along my parents this time, as some of you are aware my dad has Alzheimers and has had a serious decline in his condition over the past 6 months so we knew this would be our last family holiday all together.

Flights
We flew for the first time with TUI on the Dreamliner from Glasgow to Sanford and had no issues at all. Im not sure about the "no jet-lag" thing as we did feel great when we arrived and for the first time ever managed a park on arrival day. However I have felt awful all weekend and was up pacing the floor at 3am this morning! The staff were all excellent on the flight, the food was lovely and a great choice of films including a Star is Born and Bohemian Rhapsody (and the free wine is also a bonus)

Royal Pacific Resort - Club Level
We stayed at RPR in a Club Level Lounge for the first 4 days of our stay and once again the hotel and the staff blew us away, the staff cant do enough for you and are so helpful and friendly. My youngest turned 8 whilst we were there and they put so much into making it a special day for him, with balloons and a cake and a small birthday party in the Club Lounge in the evening.

Villa
We were very apprehensive about staying in a Villa as we have been so used to onsite stays but OMG we loved it. We stayed in a 5 bedroom villa in Highgate Park @ Legacy Park and it was lovely and clean, well equipped and spacious. The villa was in a great location not far from Berry Town Centre and a short drive to the 192. We loved spending time in the pool after a busy day in the parks and villa holidays will be the only way to go for us in the future I think.

Driving
This had been the thing that we had been most nervous about as it had been 10 years since Barry had driven in Orlando. We booked our car through Andy @ Discount Florida Car Hire, and received excellent service and communication. It was a simple straightforward process collecting the car from Four Points Sheraton and returning to Sanford. The car was a 7 seater Dodge Caravan and we had no issues at all. Within 10 minutes Barry felt totally at ease and he said the driving was easier than here in the UK. We feel like we are home to a third world country actually having to change gears and open the doors and boot manually

However we had a small issue when someone ran into us in Walmart carpark only 2 hours after collecting the vehicle. Luckily there was no damage to the car and the English family were on the last day of their holidays and the lady driver was so upset but no-one was hurt and that was the main thing.

Parks
We managed the Universal parks easily due to the Express Passes included in our onsite stay, however once again I found Disney especially Magic Kingdom a bit of a nightmare trying to ride anything without a FP, there was nothing under 80 minutes wait most of the time and was always just so so busy.

Eating Offsite
After doing the DDP our past two stays this was such a welcome change for us being able to sample some of the offsite delights but the thing I liked most was eating when I was hungry and not because I had to go to an ADR reservation that I had made 6 months before. We loved Millers, Longhorns and Outback and we balked at the price of $260 for a Disney breakfast at Tusker House and then ate at Longhorns the next night with 6 steaks and drinks for $120!

Shopping
We managed a hefty bit of shopping this time, think more due to the fact that we had a car and were able to just nip in to the outlets if we felt like it. Spent a fortune on sports clothes like Nike, Under Armour, Puma and Adidas and struggled to zip the cases!

Date Night
Yes... you read that correctly, we even managed a date night whilst there. My mum offered to keep the boys so Barry and I headed to the World Showcase for some drinks. It might have been one of the best nights of my life - we certainly made the most of it because it will probably be 10 years before we have a child free night in Disney again

Travelling with my dad

All in all I felt that my dad done really really well, there were a couple of moments when he was really really overwhelmed with the Villa and the parks and he became quite emotional saying that he couldnt ever have believed he would have had the opportunity to experience something like that.

Some days he struggled with the heat but the villa was perfect for that as he would sit inside with a movie and my mum could relax at the pool if we were at the parks. When we were in the parks he struggled a little with his mobility so we hired a wheelchair which at first he was too proud to go in but before we knew it he was refusing to walk and loving getting wheeled around.







So all in all we had a wonderful time, cant wait to go back and I am now on the look out for flights for my special birthday in June next year, after weighing up lots of options we have decided to stick to what works best for us so back to Orlando it is. However we are going to mix it up a little with a no park holiday next year as we feel there is loads more to do and would like to incorporate a coast stay now that we feel more comfortable with the driving.

Thanks for reading
Shona

Edited at 07:37 PM.
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Unread 19 May 19, 07:44 PM  
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jackster14
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Sounds like a fab holiday.
How lovely you could take your Dad, my Mum has Alzheimers so I know how tricky that can be.
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Unread 19 May 19, 07:46 PM  
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Mel49
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I remember you posting about your Dad and it's lovely to read that overall he coped well and enjoyed the holiday of a lifetime with you all. As a Nurse once said to us that with patients with dementia you have to "treasure all the moments" however small as they create memories to look back on and it sounds like you have certainly done that.
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Unread 19 May 19, 07:55 PM  
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Animagus
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Sounds wonderful. How lovely to take your parents and for your dad to have that experience.
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Unread 19 May 19, 07:56 PM  
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Mexy02
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Ive got a bit choked reading your report . I love taking my mum and she is eternally grateful for sharing memories with her grandkids. Sounds like you had a perfect mix of fun and memories x
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Unread 19 May 19, 08:03 PM  
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florida addict
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Lovely post...delighted you all had a good time and lovely for your parents to experience it with you and your family. Think your dad did.very well.considering all. Thanks for posting
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Unread 19 May 19, 08:04 PM  
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Gryff
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So glad it went well for all of you
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Unread 19 May 19, 08:15 PM  
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gemma-lou
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What a lovely holiday you have had. I couldnt agree more with royal Pacific resort making your sons birthday amazing. They really do out do themselves.

What wonderful memories you have made with your dad. I lost my grandad a few years back to dementia, what a lovely thing you did in taking him with you, you will always have memories and smiles.

We enjoy driving in Orlando. Ether than UK too lol
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