Hey, all! We just got back last night from our very first family vacation, and man, was it wonderful. Anyone who has talked to me in the last several months knows that I was on high-anxiety-worry mode. Like, waking up in the night and not being able to fall back asleep because of how nervous I was. I’m a homebody, and very into my daily routines, so this was about as far out of my comfort zone as it gets.
Our vacation started off great with a very smooth flight to Orlando.
Then things took a dive when we got to our townhouse. Ugh… let me tell you that the ONLY stress of our vacation was caused by this place. If you are in Orlando, DO NOT stay at Royal Oaks. The first place they put us in was not only filthy, the master bathroom shower was seriously pieced together and the floor felt like you were going to fall through, and it leaked onto the ceiling of the living room downstairs. I’m seriously not even able to tell you the ick and ugh factor. After having more and more go wrong with the first place, they put us in another unit, which was better, even much better, but still not good. I found pieces of broken glass in the carpet (thank God I found it before someone stepped on it!) and when we started the oven to bake cinnamon rolls for breakfast, it started smoking like the place was going to erupt into flames. The maintenance person they sent sat and scrubbed it for an hour to make it usable. And seriously, folks, I’m not even telling an eighth of the stuff. I would say that we weren’t there for the hotel, but we actually chose a deluxe townhouse with an in-unit hot tub and full kitchen so we COULD spend some downtime relaxing in the unit. And for what we paid, it shouldn’t have been an issue. So that part was a mess. A horrible, hot mess.
BUT everything else was amazing.
Our first full day there, we decided to take a boat tour to see dolphins. It was awesome. We went with Ponce Inlet Watersports. They did a great job. The tour guides were really silly and laid back. They were really knowledgeable about everything from the animals we saw to the trees lining the shore. It was great. We saw a TON of dolphins (my crappy travel phone didn’t do it justice) including a nursery (moms & babies) and a feeding frenzy thing where the dolphins rounded up fish and then jumped to eat them. It was awesome! Harlow found a dismembered crab carcass that was probably some critter’s lunch, and we just had the best time. I would totally recommend this place. The only thing I would have changed is that I would have liked to have spent a little more time at the place we stopped. It would have been very cool to have been able to spend more time looking for seashells.
I’ll be back with Day 2 soon, but I feel it needs its own post, since we went to Mickey’s Not So Spooky Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom. Seriously a wonderful experience! Ta-ta for now!