Kennedy Space Center ==> Letdown. Disneyworld ==> Rad!
That was central florida to us. We drove north out of Miami, and had a hard time getting a campsite. First off it seemed that half the campgrounds were closed, still repairing hurricane damage, and the others were all full. Secondly, we met even more people intent on using their vehicles as weapons.
Ended up in a motel. $70 a night! Oh my god the horror. This was the first night in a motel in the entire trip. But boy did we make use of it. We watched tv, bounced up and down on the beds, and walked over to the service station to get Amber Bock in our pajamas and bare feet at 1am, after finishing the last of the port, and all the beer in the esky.
Kennedy Space Center just wasn't all that thrilling. I was especially let down as I paid an extra $20 for a "Nasa up close tour" which meant that I got to get rushed through what used to be a self paced exhibit on the International Space Station, but was now guided, "for security reasons" and then got to drive "close" to the shuttle launch pads. Yeah, were close means about one and a half kilometers away. I got to see poorly labelled machinery behind glass at the ISS display, that "one day would go in space!" yay.
The shuttle launch pads are huge yes, but you still don't get to see any detail at that sort of range. The only interesting thing I learnt was that they dump a whole shit load of water into the air via these giant garden sprinklers in the seconds before launch, which are used to.... make it quieter! Neat trick. Oh, but you would have heard the same story on the normal tour. (Which goes as close as 3km!)
The Saturn V center is pretty neat, but it's on the standard tour ($30) so I felt well gypped. Great big rockets! Had fun reading the other news stories in the news clippings presented for each of the apollo launches. One of my big gripes was how little of it was hands on, (the bulk of the center) or what was hands on was lame and broken. Had a good time wandering around the rocket garden, which had capsules and things you could actually get into. (and even featured a broken one, that had gotten knocked down by.... you guessed it, a hurricane)
So much for dissapointment. That night we stayed in a campground with wireless internet. That demaned photo id of all campers over 18. They couldn't say why. Not the nicest campground, a lot more crowded than we were used to.
But the next day was disneyworld! The guy we'd met in New Orleans had proved to be a total flake, his number never worked. We think he was too drunk to write it properly. Disneyworld was about $3 more expensive than my day at the Space Center, but wayyy more fun. (Though we did spend a hell of a lot more on food at disneyworld than at the space center.)
We arrived a few minutes after it opened at 9am, and went straight for splash mountain, intending on working the "Fastpass" system, where you go and reserve a place in the line for later in the day. Basically, you get a guaranteed place in a short line for a one hour window sometime later in the day (shown in advance) and in the meantime you can line up normally. You can't get another fastpass until that hour starts, but you can get another straight away then.
So we were all going to just run around and get a fastpass, then do smaller stuff while we waited. But when we got to Splash Mountain, the normal line was only a 10min wait, and fastpass was come back in 90 minutes. We jumped on normally! Splash Mountain was rad! We did the same at the Haunted Castle, which had some neat effects, but wasn't as much fun. Thunder Mountain Railroad also had a tiny line! (And was also lots of fun!)
By 10:30, we'd done three of the big rides! We ruled. In fact, by 2:30, we'd done all of them, and were wondering what the hell we were going to do with the rest of the day. We'd added the mad hatters teacups, Space Mountain (awesome) the race cars, buzz lightyears shootemup game/ride, the swiss family treehouse, the Pirates of the carribean (awesome scenery and effects, not so wild on the ride front)
So, we did what all good kids do. Besides eating more chocolates, burgers, icecreams, and other lovely sugary goodness. (Disney has an incredible variety of sugary goodness, in the non sugar department, you can get burgers, and you can substitute carrots for frys, and milk for softdrink, but that's it for healthy)
We went on them all again! Even more fun! We also rode the riverboat, and visited tom sawyers island, which was much more fun than it looked at first, with guns you could shoot at the riverboat which made pretty realistic sounds, and caves to run around and exlore in. The only big classic we didn't do was peter pan's flight, which we heard was really for little kids anyway, and neither of us liked the peter pan story that much anyway, and it had a HUGE line. ALL DAY!
The lilo and stitch one promised a lot, but was definitely a little kids attraction. I'm not sure who The Enchanted tiki room was for. I saw puzzled looks on people large and small.
But finally, after three trips in a row on the Splash mountain, with our own line, our own fastpass, and a couple given to us, and one last run on the space mountain, it was time for the parade, and fireworks. (and more sugar!) I barely recognized any of the parade people :) But the floats, and their lights were cool. Fireworks were well thought out, and showy, rather than the traditional "blow up as many as you can all at once!" school of thought. All in all, a lovely day :) (But no camera, I hadn't yet purchased my baby camera for occasions like these)
Saturn V main rockets are HUGE
And the whole thing is really long/tall!