Monday, August 28, 2023

Disney around the World - Day 5 Part 1 - Early morning at the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel 2018-10-18

Good morning from Shanghai! It's 4:20am and Ian is wide awake! Like I've done the previous days, when the kids got up early, I took them out of the room so the rest of the family could sleep. 

Ian asked if we could go to the pool! I told him it was super early and I didn't think it was open, but we could try. I had him change into his swimsuit and we left to explore. 

We startled the cleaning lady near the pool by saying Nihow. I tried to ask if the pool was open, but it was lost in translation. No worries. Our next stop was the front desk where we were informed that the pool doesn't open until 7am. 
That's okay with us. We'll go explore the Shanghai Disney Hotel then! There's plenty of things to see!
One of the first things we found was the Mickey Mouse Playhouse. It's also closed, but we'll have to check it out again later. 

Walking among the floors, we found Beauty and the Beast at the bottom of a spiral stairway. 

Then by LumiĆ©re's Kitchen, different Mickey shaped foods. 

Here's the main lobby of the hotel. Mickey is conducting a 4 piece orchestra with Donald on the drums. 

Minnie on the violin. 

Pluto on the triangle. 

And Goofy blowing a trumpet. 

That is a very glittery castle model. 

There's lots of pumpkins stacked by the fireplace. It's Halloweentime after all. 

We've looked through the inside of the hotel a bit, but what about the outside? This looks out towards the Downtown Disney area of Shanghai. It's dark over there. 

But from here, there's a giant field behind the hotel, and I see a pretty fountain. Let's go explore! 

Lights around the fountain change colors. 

Make it pink. Make it blue!

The decorative piece in the middle is a flower that also changes colors. 

Looking back towards the hotel at the second floor Lobby and Lumiere's Kitchen below. 

Near the fountain, Ian found something I didn't know they had here. The Hakuna Matata Oasis! Let's go explore it here at 5 in the morning! 

A water hole? We followed a set of footprints over to the water. Love the concrete work here, how it really looks like dried mud surrounding a pond. 

And near a few termite mounds, who do we find? 

It's Timon and Pumba! Just relaxing the day (night) away. Hakuna Matata. No Worries. 

This looks like a good place to rustle up some grub! 

A grub! 

Ian saw a path behind the water hole and wanted to explore it. Let's go! 

I didn't realize it at the time, but there's a maze of sorts here. The satellite view shows the different paths in the middle left. 

Coming around a corner, who do we find? 

It's the Lion King himself! Simba! 

Further exploration and here's Nala too! 

And it's Zazu too! I thought that might be all, seeing as how these were the only main characters in the movie near the water hole in the big "I Just Can't Wait to Be King" song. 

But Ian found one more! Rafiki! Ian duplicated him in meditation. I love the "tree" he is on that has young Simba on it. 

Walking around the rest of the grounds, we saw a top hatted topiary Mickey. Very nice. 

We walked all the way around the east side of the hotel, but there wasn't much more to see. I tried my hotel card on the door and only got a red light. No getting back inside this way. We backtracked to the large field.

 Ian wanted to go back to play on the log in the Hakuna Matata Oasis again. 

I see you there buddy. 

Next, we went inside to check out the shops on the third floor. It's the Ballet Cafe, inspired by the tutu wearing hippos from Fantasia. 

On the wall is a picture of the Fantasia Carousel we rode yesterday; our first ride at Shanghai Disneyland! 

Looking through the window of Tinker Bell gifts, we see a giant tree with fairy houses in it! We'll have to come back again when it's open! 

Theresa sent me a text that they were awake. I tried to use my hotel key to access the elevators, but again was greeted by a red light. Hmm. A quick stop at the front desk and they fixed my card issues. Now I know why I had issues getting back into the hotel from outside. 
This is really the first time Alli and Ian have seen the room. It wasn't prepared when we first arrived and they were asleep when we came in last night. They both loved Alli's small bed. 

Alli was excited to show Ian the headboard too!
Alli - Look! Isntdit citin!

Time to get our day started! Our first stop is the lobby. 

Alli checking out the large musical statue. 

Smiling next to Minnie and Pluto. 

We didn't get much further than the lobby cartoons. Tiny chairs to sit in for the kids while the adults get checked in to the hotel, just like many other Disney hotels we've visited. Mickey is funny in any language. The kids had a quick breakfast here of bananas and juice while they watched cartoons. 

The front of the hotel. We briefly saw this yesterday as we pulled up in the taxi. 

Mickey and Minnie in their fancy clothes. I can see now that the Mickey topiary out back matches this statue in the front!

Yesterday when we asked about how to get over to Shanghai Disneyland, we were told the ferry was the way to go. There's a walking path also, but it would take 30-40 minutes. Giving ourselves plenty of time (it's still only 6:45am) we set out to walk to the main gates. 

Looking across Xingyuan Lake towards Downtown Disney and the Disney Castle. 

Flowering plants along the way. 

Transitioning into a boardwalk where we looked off the side to see fish. 

A relaxing seating area for anyone who wants to take a break. 

Starting to get close now! 

Here's that giant Donald Duck rubber ducky! Cute! 
I timed how long our walk took. Only 9 minutes and 45 seconds and we weren't even going fast. This is definitely the most efficient way to get from the hotel to the park. 

While the Anaheim Disneyland has a giant pumpkin inside the park, here in Shanghai there's a giant Mickey pumpkin outside the park! And it's surrounded by other pumpkins carved with a Disney flair. 

At 7am, the line to get through security has barely started to form. I think we can take a little time to explore Downtown Disney. 

Nothing is open yet, but we'll see the outside of the Lego Store. 

There's Trick-or-Treat going on all month! 

Just wandering through the empty area. 

Ah, there's a Beauty and the Beast Broadway Musical here. That'd be fun. Expensive, but fun. And we can look in towards the empty park. 

Ruston and Jacob have made the journey from the hotel to Downtown Disney and we all met up at Starbucks. 

Grabbing a little bit of coffee and food for our morning breakfast. 

Toasted Choco Flavored Marshmallow Latte, probably good. Espresso Malt Latte, I'm sure that's also good. Beer Flavored Latte? Huh. 

Ian checking out the free stickers he got. 

Next it was time to finally get in line. Everyone squeezed together, but not overly so. There were a few line cutters, but the people around us seemed just a perturbed by them as we were. Cutting in this line was very frowned upon. 
Around 8:00am, a line of security guards filed out from wherever they've been hanging out. No early opening here. 

The line shuffled forward as we made our way to the front. Here's an idea of about how tight we were squeezed together. 

Some helpful tips. No outside food. Only purchase things from resort cast members (there were a few people selling souvenirs outside security). 

Security to get in was a little bit different here. Instead of a long line behind each entry, a guard regulated the number of people who could go into the staging area. Once the lines died down, the next wave of people were let in. 
Bag check today was VERY lax. No one looked in the strollers. The metal detectors were ignored. 

After making it through security (8:15am or so), all of us headed over to the particular ticket booth where Ruston would pick up his tickets. Ian, stay seated in that stroller today. We don't need a repeat of yesterday's medical incident. 

Just in case you're curious what our tickets look like, here's the front. 

And there's the back. With tickets in hand, we're ready to enter the parks! Let's start our second Shanghai Disneyland day!

1 comment:

  1. Lots of fine "Chinese" print on the ticket's back :-)...very colorful souvenir Shanghai park ticket. Exploring the Shanghai hotel and grounds so early in the morning!!!...what a beautiful sparkly castle in the store case...lovely fountain with those various, changing colors (Alli must have LOVED the pink shade case :-) )...such cute little footprints leading to the Hakuna Matata Oasis (one of those details that add a little "extra" to the scene)...excellent meditative pose by Ian (he had it down pat!). Loved the excitement from Alli as she was bursting to show Ian the magical headboards (can watch that magic for quite some time, too). A very scenic walk from the hotel to Disneyland...guess the original 30-40 min time was assuming a long rest stop :-) Seeing that giant Donald Duck rubber ducky must have brought big smiles on the kids' (and adults') faces...probably a little too big to put in the kids' bathtub, unfortunately :-) Seeing all those darkly-dressed Security Guards walking out to the front gates looked a bit intimidating to me. With tickets in hand, looks like everyone is ready to start a full day at Shanghai Disneyland! exciting! EOM