2015 Florida Vacation Recap – Part 1

As most of you know, Preston and I spent last week on vacation in Florida.  We spent seven glorious days enjoying time in Cocoa Beach, at a Phillies Spring Training Game, and at Disney World.

Our trip actually started Friday evening with a late evening drive down to Richmond.  We got an incredible deal on a direct flight from Richmond to Orlando which saved us several hundred dollars per person.  We spent Friday night in a Richmond hotel since our flight was at 6:45 a.m. on Saturday.

After flying down to Orlando Saturday morning and picking up our rental car we headed to Animal Kingdom for a couple of hours.  It was a great way to kick off vacation, especially since it was a cooler day (the high only reached the mid-60s), and we weren’t too interested in spending a cold day at the beach.  In addition to riding some of our favorite Animal Kingdom rides (Expedition Everest, Kilimanjaro Safaris, and Dinosaur), we also saw one of my favorite shows at Disney, Festival of the Lion King.

animal kingdom

Mid afternoon we left Animal Kingdom and drove to Cocoa Beach, where we enjoyed happy hour at our hotel’s tiki bar followed by dinner at Fat Kahuna’s (I had some delicious tuna tacos for dinner), and some beer tasting at the Cocoa Beach Brewing Company.

fat kahunas

On Sunday we went for a morning run, which wound up being the only time during our vacation that either of us worked out.  I had intended to work out more than I did, but it just didn’t happen.  After our run we went to a local church for Palm Sunday service, and then headed to Jazzy’s Mainely Lobster for lunch.  Just take a look at the size of my clam strips – so large, juicy, and delicious!  After lunch we spent the afternoon lounging around our hotel pool before we headed into Historic Cocoa Village for dinner at Sublime Restaurant and Sangria Lounge, where Preston and I both enjoyed a sangria flight with our dinner.  We could have easily shared one flight instead of each ordering one.


Monday was my birthday, and it also happened to be our nicest day at the beach.  Maybe it was God’s birthday present to me?!?  We woke up early enough to walk out to the beach to see an absolutely gorgeous sunrise.  We then spent the rest of the day sitting poolside and walking on the beach, which was the perfect low key way to spend my birthday.  For dinner, we headed to a local thai/sushi restaurant.


Early Tuesday morning, we checked out of our Cocoa Beach hotel and drove back to Disney World.  Since there’s lots of gorgeous pictures from Epcot Flower and Garden Festival that I want to share with all of you, I’ll save the second half of our trip for another post.

QOTD: What is your ideal way to spend your birthday?

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62 Responses to 2015 Florida Vacation Recap – Part 1

  1. Sounds like you had a fantastic birthday! Those tacos and drinks look so yummy! I haven’t been to Animal Kingdom in years. We always seem to go to Magic Kingdom instead.

  2. You mean you didn’t try your hand at surfing? And that beach is one of the best for a great workout! Tell me you didn’t at least get lost in Ron Jon’s for an hour or so. Lord knows how easy it is!

  3. My boys are huge Phillies fans and would love to go the training camp. They are not too optimistic about the season ahead though 🙂

  4. Looks like fun! We love vacationing in Florida!

  5. I loved Festival when we went to Disney in January for marathon weekend – I’d never been to the Animal Kingdom before! It was so cold that weekend though (the morning of the half, which I was running, was about 40 degrees) so I’m jealous of that beachy weather!

  6. This sounds like the perfect birthday weekend! My ideal birthday would be spent with family and friends (somewhere exotic would be awesome), and I’d get a bulldog as a gift 🙂

  7. Lesley says:

    I’m planning a trip to Napa to celebrate my 30th back in January. Otherwise I just work, wait out the winter weather and eat birthday cake.

  8. Chaitali says:

    Sounds like a great trip! The beach is definitely on my list of ideal ways to spend my birthday 🙂

  9. Looks like a great trip. Last year, my sister and I went to Charleston SC for our annual sister trip and to celebrate our birthdays. That was awesome!

  10. Perfect birthday and delicious food! Sometimes vacation food is the best! 🙂

  11. Looks like you had an amazing birthday! Vacation time is the best!

  12. What a great vacation! I’ve definitely been lacking in beach time lately.

  13. Awww, looks like a great time away! Love the sunset pictures. Beautiful!

  14. Farrah says:

    Aww, sounds like you had an awesome birthday! 😀 I love the beach pictures!

    I’d love to spend my birthday with family + close friends, but it likely isn’t gonna happen this year either. (I’ll likely be sewing people up instead. :O ) Someeeday!

  15. Jennifer says:

    Sounds like it was a fun birthday/spring break trip! The taco and clam strips looked very good (as did the sangria flight – the glasses looked very generous)

  16. What a way to spend a birthday!
    Okay, it’s official your pictures have me desperately wanting a beach vacation!
    Looks like you guys had such a fun trip!

  17. My ideal birthday is one where I can sleep in. I hope your was amazing!

  18. Looks like a great way to spend your birthday/vacation! I love spending mine with my girls and husband…birthday are so exciting to little kids!

  19. Elle says:

    I haven’t been to Forida since 1993. Sounds like they have added some new things to Disney World since I was last there. I may need to go back!

  20. Sounds like a lovely trip. I only like the beach when it’s not too hot out, so it sounds like you were down there at the perfect time.

  21. This looks so fun!! I love all your pictures!

  22. Wow this sounds epic! Happy birthday by the way!! I can’t wait to see all the flowers, spring flowers are my fav!!

  23. We went to Florida two summers ago and ate at big kahunas too! It’s was delicious!

  24. Karen :0) says:

    Sounds like great start to your trip! Glad you enjoyed your birthday! Yummm those clam strips look delicious!

  25. I so badly want to see the lion king. Someday. I’m participating in a dualthlon and taking a trip to Montreal for my birthday this year. Yay Me!

  26. Juliana says:

    sounds like a great start to the trip and a great way to spend your birthday! i finally saw FotLK at Wine and dine (I had not seen it in years and then it was closed for many trips in a row). The new theater is SO GORGEOUS! I told my boyfriend it is a must do when we are there in June

  27. jillconyers says:

    Kathryn you have a great smile 🙂

    My husband and I have gotten into the tradition of a birthday run corresponding with our age. We love it!

  28. GiselleR says:

    I’ve been to Florida and all the parks a million times as a kid, but I’ve always wanted to go back as an adult. Positive it’s like 10 times better lol

  29. I would absolutely love to spend my birthday at the beach but if not then with family and friends laughing would be perfect too. Looks like a super fun vacation!!!

  30. I would love to spend my birthday…on the beach…getting a massage…after a nice long run (while my kids played in the sand next to me). happy birthday and glad you got some good weather

  31. Pingback: 2015 Florida Vacation Recap – Part 2 | From Dancing to Running

  32. Pingback: 2015 Florida Vacation Recap – Part 3 | From Dancing to Running

  33. Pingback: 2015 Year in Review | From Dancing to Running

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