Over The Top Mommy

Travel

SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration Featuring New Live Nativity Through January 6

I was invited to attend a media event in order to provide this coverage. All opinions are my own.

 

I was so excited when family and I were invited to a special night at SeaWorld San Diego to experience their Christmas Celebration. Wow, SeaWorld goes all out, with more than a million holiday lights, hundreds of Christmas trees and 5,000 feet of garland. The lights of SeaWorld’s 320-foot Skytower Tree of Lights, which is the largest Christmas tree in Southern California, dance in sync with classic holiday songs.seaworld-celebration-family-photo-1

What’s New at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration for 2017
This year at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration, there’s an all-new live holiday musical, O Wondrous Night. It brings the moving story of the Nativity and the meaning of Christmas to life through song and celebration, It is “The Greatest Story Never Told:.seaworld-o-wondrous-night The spectacular stage show is performed nightly, under the stars, in the Nautilus Amphitheater It tells the Christmas story from a new point of view: through the eyes of the animals. The musical features more than 30 carols, beautiful storytelling puppets and live majestic animals, including camels, a donkey, llamas, sheep and doves. seaworld-o-wondrous-night-nativity-sceneIt’s absolutely amazing and beautiful and will fill your heart with the true message of Christmas. Here’s a look at “O Wondrous Night”:
In addition to O Wondrous Night, all the seasonal favorites that have made SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration a family holiday tradition are back for park guests to enjoy. Here are some of the other fun holiday festivities you’ll find this year at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration:
Rudolph’s Christmastown

Returning this holiday season is the most famous reindeer, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in his very own area, Rudolph’s Christmastown. rudolphs-signWe were excited to see our friend Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer again this year. Did you know SeaWorld is the only theme park on the West Coast where people can meet Rudolph?rudolph-and-friends Yep! Rudolph is hanging out with his friends Clarice, Bumble, and Yukon Cornelius. You should get over there to visit him and take advantage of the fun photo opportunities. seaworld-christmas-celebration-just-rudolph Nightly Tree Lighting
There’s a nightly tree-lighting ceremony featuring the 40-foot Happiest Christmas Tree, which is accompanied by the Misfit Brass band. It was a delight to sip on hot cocoa and watch all the fun! seaworld-christmas-celebration-hot-cocoaFestive Food Offerings
There’s also an special holiday menu featuring Holiday Pizzas and delicious varieties of Mac & Cheese.  Feast on Mashed Potato, Cranberry Arugula and Classic Pepperoni Pizzas.seaworld-mashed-potato-pizzaThere’s also Holiday Mac & Cheese, Christmastown Mac & Chese and Classic Mac & Cheese.

seaworld-holiday-mac-and-cheeseSanta’s Christmas Village 
Friends and family can cozy up at Santa’s Christmas Village, where children listen to Mrs. Claus during story time. Kids can share their wish list and take pictures with Santa at Santa’s Cottage. seaworld-santa-and-mrs-clausParents can also check in for a pager that will hold their spot in line to meet Santa so that the family can explore the Village, including educational encounters with real reindeer from Santa’s workshop, “Merry Moments” with Santa’s friendly elves and delectable culinary creations. You’ll also want to join in the Christmas Sing-Along with Mrs. Claus and the Elves, as well as the Elves Dance Party. For extra fun, mae sure to stick around for when it starts to snow! seaworld-christmas-celebration-snowDolphin Island Christmas
SeaWorld’s Christmas-themed dolphin show celebrates the holidays with a tropical twist as dolphins and pilot whales perform amazing athletic feats set to island music.seaworld-dolphin-island-christmasClyde & Seamore’s Christmas Special
The park’s prank-loving pinnipeds Clyde and Seamore have a hilarious holiday time in this Christmas-themed sea lion and otter show!seaworld-christmas-sea-lionsCat’s Christmas Parlor
Outside Nautilus Amphitheater, guests will find the Cat’s Christmas Parlor, where the feline stars of Pets Rule! hang out in their own holiday-themed house. It’s so cute to see them hanging out!

seaworld-celebration-lightsAll of SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration festivities are included with park admission. (with exception of arcade-style games and reserved experiences such as Breakfast With Orcas and Santa) SeaWorld has a variety of admission ticket offers that provide tremendous value perfect for both local residents and tourists, including the SoCal Annual Pass for less than $100. seaworld-family-photo-2.Did you know….a visit to SeaWorld helps support animal rescue programs as well as provide millions of dollars in donations and in-kind services to conservation projects around the world? Seeing animals at SeaWorld supports saving them in the wild. For more information, please visit http://www.SeaWorldSanDiego.com or call (619) 222-4SEA.

Some images are property of SeaWorld and used with permission. 

 

Let’s Take a Look at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

This is not a sponsored post. 

 

lets-talk-about-disney-againHave you been to Walt Disney World before? Well, it’s one of my most favorite places to travel with my family and on our last visit there, our family stayed at Disney’s Pop Century Resort. disneys-magical-expressStaying at a Disney Resort Hotel is a “must” for us on our trips because there are so many benefits to staying in an official Disney World Resort Hotel. We’d never stayed at “The Pop” before and were pleased with everything about our stay. disneys-pop-century-resort-exteriorDisney’s Pop Century Resort is one of five “Value” resorts at Walt Disney World and is unique because it features themed sections from the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and the 90’s.disneys-pop-century-roger-rabbit If you have any connection with these decades you’ll definitely appreciate the exterior of the property, as well as the decor throughout the lobby area with its timeless fashions, catch phrases, toys and dances that captivated the world through these decades. If you’re too young to remember any of those decades, don’t worry, you’ll still smile as you take a tour of “the olden days”. (as my daughter referred to them.) disneys-pop-century-resort-80s-sectionDuring our stay, the Pop Century was in the middle of renovating many of the guest rooms. We were fortunate enough to stay in the “80s” section of the hotel (a nod to my own childhood and genius inventions such as Rubik’s Cube®) and our particular room had already been renovated. Our room was adorable! disneys-pop-centry-welcomeWe opted for a Standard Room and it was the perfect size for our family of 3. When you enter the room, there’s one double bed and a small table with 2 chairs that is easy to slide over so you can pull down a (second) Murphy bed from the wall. We just stuck the table and chairs over by the window. disneys-pop-resort-beds The room features light wood floors and bright Mickey Mouse decor. It’s super cute! The furniture is modern and there’s plenty of room for 4 guests to stay in one room. The bathroom is super modern in-room-amenities

In-room amenities at Disney’s Pop Century include:

  • a dresser with drawers
  • a big screen TV with remote
  • extra blankets and pillows
  • a (small) table and chairs for dining
  • A/C
  • an ironing board and iron
  • shower/tub combo
  • a small fridge with freezer
  • a coffee maker with coffee and necessitiesdisneys-pop-century-closet
    disneys-pop-century-iron-and-dryer
  • a shower/tub combo
  • Disney H2O+ toiletries
  • ample closet space with hangers
  • laundry services are available (for a fee)
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

disneys-pop-century-twister-game

resort-amenities

Other resort amenities, unique to the Pop Century include:

  • 3 swimming pools with complimentary towel service
  • a playground
  • a jogging trail
  • an arcade
  • movies under the stars

disneys-pop-century-pool-1

disneys-pop-century-playground

dining-options

I appreciated the food situation at the Pop Century. There’s a pretty big food court area with plenty of options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as many “grab & go” items. Some of my favorites included Mickey waffles and bacon, fresh pastries, pot roast, pasta, and pizza. mickey-waffleYou also have the option to order Disney pizza delivery to your room. There are also beverages available at the Petals Pool Bar, located adjacent to the Petals Pool. If you’re on the Disney Dining Plan, this is a perfect place to eat at. (To learn more about Disney Dining Plans, go here.) disneys-pop-century-pizza-deliveryresort-transportation

Disney’s Pop Century Resort is located in the Wide World of Sports Area and offers complimentary bus transportation to and from the Parks, as well as Disney Springs. You can find a schedule out in front of the bus stops, which are in front of the hotel.disneys-pop-resort-bus-transportation Bus service begins about an hour before the first Extra Magic Hours of each day and continues until about an hour after the last park closes. Buses seem to run about every 20 minutes to each of the parks. You can also ask Concierge for more information about the transportation at the Pop Century Resort.mickeys-ice-cream-barOverall, we loved staying at Disney’s Pop Century Resort so much. It truly is a great hotel to book a stay at and I don’t think there was anything about it we didn’t like. memory-maker-epcot

Our family can’t wait to return to Walt Disney World again! We make so many great memories together on each trip. Do you currently have a Disney trip planned anytime soon? If so, I’d love to hear about it! Share with me in the comments!

disneys-pop-century-mr-and-mrs-potato-head

disneys-pop-century-sign

Guide to Making the Most of the Holidays at the Disneyland Resort

It’s the merriest and most wonderful time of year at the Disneyland Resort. The hustle and bustle along Main Street, U.S.A. and Buena Vista Street is in full swing. With holiday decor and twinkling lights all around, both parks are adorned and ready for guests of all ages to visit this holiday season.disneyland-holidays-sleeping-beauty-castle-adornedDisney-Holidays-Buena-Vista-StreetOur family spent a day out at the resort taking in all of the sights, sounds, and holiday fun to be had. I think it’s my most favorite time of year to visit.disneyland-holidays-with-mickeyFrom riding special holiday attractions like “it’s a small world” Holiday and Haunted Mansion Holiday to watching A Christmas Fantasy Parade and “Believe….in Holiday Magic” Fireworks to enjoying holiday treats and offerings in the Festive Foods Marketplace at the Disney Festival of Holidays, we had an excited and jam-packed day.disneyland-holidays-castle-1I feel as giddy as a little girl when I visit Disneyland Resort this time of year. Of course, I could actually say that about every visit there! Do you feel that way too?holidays-at-disneyland-resort-its-a-small-world-2Since there’s so much to do at Disneyland Resort this holiday season, I’ve put together a a guide for you to be able to make the most of your visit. You don’t want to miss out on any of the magic of both parks. I highly suggest a multi-day ticket, so you can take more time exploring each of the parks’ holiday offerings. However, it is possible to fit a lot of the holiday magic into just one day. Here’s my best advice. I hope it’s helpful.guide-to-making-the-most-of-holidays-at-the-disneyland-resortSpend some time planning before you go
I’m a definite planner so before each of our visits, I’ve found myself looking online, on the Disneyland Official Site, looking at Park Hours and the Entertainment Schedule for the day we’re going to visit. It’s a great way to plan ahead and have an idea in your head of how you should map our your stay. The site also has a ton of other info, including Disneyland Resort hotel information if you’re looking to make it a complete vacation experience.disneyland-holidays-mainstreet-at-nightDownload the Disneyland Mobile App
It’s the most magical app and the official app for the Disneyland Resort. Download it on App Store and/or get it on Google Play. The Disneyland Mobile App allows you to do such things as see park hours and maps, check wait times, buy park tickets, check FASTPASS return times, see restaurant menus and make dining reservations, view Disney PhotoPass photos, locate Disney Characters, and so much more. For more info about the Disneyland Mobil app, go here.disneyland-appDo add Disney MAXPass to your ticket
By now, you’ve probably heard a lot of talk about Disney MaxPass. If you haven’t, it’s a great feature to add to your park ticket (or Annual Pass) for $10 a person. MaxPass allows you to schedule your FASTPASS reservations to your ticket ELECTRONICALLY from your phone, through the Disneyland app. What this means is you don’t have to walk over to the attraction you’re hoping to grab a FASTPASS for. You can just schedule it from your phone. You can even be in the other park as you make your reservation. It’s such a great feature. Plus, it allows gives you access to download , save, and share, all of your PhotoPass photos from the day. Character photos, family photos, photos from designated attractions! It’s a great option to add and I highly recommend exploring it, especially during the holiday season. For more information about MaxPass, go here.disney-max-pass-imagedisneyland-resort-celebrate-summer-max-passMake a dining reservation beforehand
There are so many dining options at Disneyland Resort. Some are quick dining while others are table service. There are also grab & go food options throughout both parks. I highly suggest you make 1 dining reservation ahead of time. During the holiday season, the table service restaurants can be extra busy and I know for our family, when the hunger hits, there’s only one way to make everyone better and get them back into a good mood: FOOD! It’s easy to make a dining reservation on the app or on the site. You can also call 714) 781-3463.to make one.disneyland-grilled-cheeseStrive to make it to park opening
There are a couple advantages of making it there before opening. I feel like the parking situation is lighter when it’s early in the morning. Also, if you are there early, you’ll have better access to FastPass+ reservations, especially for the big ticket attractions that tend to “sell out” quickly. My favorite reason to get to the parks before opening is to be able to experience “Rope Drop”, which is a fun countdown right before they allow guests to head into the park. Also, if you make Rope Drop in Disneyland Park, you’ll be able to see a bunch of Cast Members all along Main Street, U.S.A. as they are giving out High 4’s to guests! (They wear Mickey gloves so that’s why it’s a “High 4”). There’s truly nothing like being in one of the parks at opening though.

Utilize Disney PhotoPass Services
PhotoPass photographers are all throughout both parks and are your best bet to capture the best shots from your visit. They are equipped with professional equipment and are set up in front of attractions, with characters, and some other fun places. They also know how to capture your best side, in the day or nighttime. I already shared that one of the benefits to adding MaxPass to your day is the ablity to access all of your PhotoPass photos from the day. It’s the best money you’ll spend and our own family loves to use one of the PhotoPass photos for our own holiday card.disneyland-holidays-photopass-with-tree-1Seek out special holiday-inspired attractions
During the holidays at Disneyland Resort, there are a few attractions that have holiday overlays and you won’t want to miss out on experiencing any of them. In Disneyland Park set sail aboard “it’s a small world” Holiday and hop on a dune buggy in Haunted Mansion Holiday. In Disney California Adventure Park, be sure to get over to CarsLand and take a holly jolly spin on Mater’s Jingle Jamboree and Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl. Once January 7 passes, these specially transformed attractions will go back to their original versions. (Kind of like what happened to Cinderella at midnight.)holidays-at-disneyland-resort-its-a-small-world-1Enjoy all the holiday treats
Although there are many foods I enjoy eating when I’m visiting the parks, my most favorite this time of year are the holiday treats. Whether it’s a special bakery treat, a hand-twisted candy cane or something warm and festive to sip on, the holiday treat offerings at the Disneyland Resort are not to be missed!disneyland-holidays-festive-treats-1Watch A Christmas Fantasy Parade
There are usually 2 performances of “A Christmas Fantasy Parade” each day. It’s a beautiful parade that the whole family will enjoy watching together. All of your favorite characters and princesses make an appearance, dressed in holiday attire, as do Santa and Mrs. Claus.disneyland-holidays-santa-in-parade-1

disneyland-holidays-a-christmas-fantasy-parade-gingerbread-manFireworks are a must!
There’s nothing ore magical than watching the nightly “Believe…in Holiday Magic” Fireworks at Disneyland Park. It’s one of our family’s favorite parts about nighttime in Disneyland Park during the holidays. Be sure to plan out where you’ll want to watch it from and try to get a spot a little early.disneyland-holidays-fireworksSave room for “The Festival of Holidays” food
Over at Disney’s California Adventure Park you’ll find 12 different kiosks set up for the “Festival of Holidays”. For more information about the foods and offerings this year, go here.disneyland-holidays-festival-of-holidays-sign-1Celebrate the season with the entertainment at Disney Festival of Holidays
In Disney California Park, there is a full lineup of holiday-inspired performances that’ll warm your heart. Be sure to check times for live music and dancing, as well as performance times of the Disney ¡Viva Navidad! street party.disneyland-holidays-viva-navidad-signLook for special holiday merchandise – Every year, I look forward to the newest holiday EARs available in the shops. I had a tough time deciding this year between the black sequinned Minnie EARs with a plaid bow or the red sequinned ones with a green bow, so I bought both! I just coudn’t resist! There is so much fun holiday-inspired merchandise to choose from this time of year. It makes my Disney heart happy!disneyland-holidays-mickey-merchandisedisneyland-holidays-merchandise-ears-1disneyland-holidays-red-sparkly-earsThere’s truly no better time like the present to create new holiday memories that will last a lifetime and no better place to do so than the Disneyland Resort! Do you have plans to visit this year? Share with me in the comments. Just be sure to do so before January 7th! Happy Holidays!\\

Some images are property of Disney. 

 

1 2 3 31