Dress Rehearsal of New Fantasyland ~ My Experience!

I was at Walt Disney World last weekend strolling with my family from Tomorrowland to Fantasyland when I noticed an opening in some shrubbery and people going into the New Fantasyland. I asked a Cast Member if we could go in and when he replied, “of course”, I just about exploded into Pixie Dust on the spot! They were conducting a Soft Opening of the brand new land!! The best part of it all, you ask? My parents happened to be in town from Seattle so they got to be a part of it!!

As we walked under the gates, the detail, as you can only imagine, was absolutely gorgeous. We decided not to go into the Enchanted Tales with Belle experience this time as there was a bit of a wait and we were on a time constraint. As we were heading back into the Enchanted Forest, we could see some of the beautiful creations emerging and getting bigger as we came closer. It was such a magical feeling and we were all so excited for the new experience!

We walked over to Gaston’s Tavern first as it was open and there were lots of people about. It felt as though we were walking right into the scene from Beauty and the Beast as we walked into the Village. Gaston was standing there boasting about his strength right next to a gorgeous fountain in front of his tavern. My friend Ashley [who is a server at the Carthay Circle Restaurant in Disney’s California Adventure] captured this fabulous picture showing all three…

When we walked into the Tavern, it was even more amazing! The detail that the Imagineers put into each and every piece of their projects is phenomenal, really. I quickly snapped these pics of one of the menu boards where you can see antlers and beer mugs hanging, as well as the fireplace that was as grand as could be! So cool!

We tried Le Fou’s Brew, and I have to say, it was FABULOUS!! The official description of the Brew is “Frozen Apple Juice with a hint of Toasted Marshmallow and topped with All Natural Passion Fruit Mango Foam served in a Souvenir Stein or Goblet”. Wow!! This stuff was delicious! My parents, who don’t like anything sweet, absolutely LOVED it too! What a faboulously refreshing treat on a hot day! The Goblets are completely adorable, and notice the little touch of Mickey too?

As we walked out of Gaston’s Tavern, there was Maurice’s Amazing Popping Machine where they sold refreshments and we decided that we needed a Mickey Bar…after all, the six of us shared two Brews, so we needed more of a snack! ;)

While my family was getting Mickey Bars, I decided to go wait in line to meet Gaston myself. He was just a hoot with every set of guests he met as I waited in line…so authentic and exactly true to his character in the movie! I wouldn’t expect any less, but it was pretty awesome. I got to the beginning of the line just as my mom and my daughter came over so all of us girls posed for a picture with the stud muffin! LOL! Can you believe how tall he is?

After meeting Gaston, we walked over to see if the Under the Sea, Journey of the Little Mermaid attraction happened to be running. Much to our delight, IT WAS!!! I’m going to give you a picture tour of this attraction and I will tell you that it was amazing, breathtaking, exactly true to detail, and we felt like we’d stepped right into the movie. I can’t think of enough adjectives right now to describe how amazing every detail was…truly a feast for the eyes!


Ariel left guests a note with instructions for the interactive ride queue game…

There were gadgets and gizmos a-plenty…


and whozits and whatzits galore…

A quick pic of the interactive game you can enjoy while waiting in line to get into your Shell!

Just one example of the completely AH-MAZING artwork on the ceilings as you walk through the ride queue.


Ariel as she’s going through the change

My VERY FAVORITE scene from the whole ride…

Together at last and getting her voice back…

And the grand finale…because every magical day should end with fireworks!!

I sure hope you’ve enjoyed my photo tour and that you are planning a visit to the New Fantasyland at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL real soon! Remember, the Enchanted Forest officially opens to the public on December 6, 2012! Be sure to keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for updates!