Walt Disney World Florida welcomes more visitors each year than any other resort on the planet. To put it in perspective, Alton Towers in Staffordshire has around 2 million whereas around 50 million find their way to Disney World each year. Alton Towers although big at around 900 acres is dwarfed by Disney’s 27,000 acres. Until you visit Walt Disney World Florida you cannot appreciate either the scale or what there is on offer.
Altogether there are four theme parks and two water parks:
- The Magic Kingdom is the iconic park with Cinderella’s Castle at its centre, all of our favourite Disney characters, the recognisable Main Street USA and of course numerous rides in the various “lands.” Delivery and service vehicles use hidden tunnels so they wont be spoil your view.
- The movies and characters from the Disney organisation influence Hollywood Studios.
- EPCOT standing for Experimental Prototype Community (or City) of Tomorrow was proposed by Walt Disney himself, prior to his death. As the name suggests it is based on a future and technology theme.
- Animal Kingdom is at its heart a Zoo, but a Zoo, Disney style, complete with rides shows and beautifully crafted and maintained landscapes.
- Blizzard beach water park is an alpine themed with giant water slides, beaches and pools
- Typhoon Lagoon has rapids, beaches and raft rides,
Hotels and Restaurants
For the true experience you should stay on the resort at one of the 30 or so Disney branded or 10 other locations. The hotels follow many themes and some are spectacular in their own right. Be warned prices range from expensive to less expensive. Staying on the complex is less stressful as you can forget the car. You can also refresh yourselves ready for the evening activities. Off-site hotels are much cheaper, but you will spend a lot of your day in traffic, parking and in transit to the parks. After a tiring day you may not have the enthusiasm for evening events.
There are over 350 restaurants and cafes! Most tastes are catered for; from humble burgers (not though at humble prices) to fine dining. Decor varies widely covering pretty well all the themes you could imagine.
Imagine the Disney stores we see in our shopping arcades and then consider whole shopping malls similarly fitted out. Probably every Disney character can be found in one of the stores. If you venture off of the complex, you will find numerous shopping malls and outlet villages to relieve you of your cash!
A visit to Walt Disney World is a wonderful experience, well worth saving up for. Look out for packages including accommodation, transportation and park entry. Prices can be double at peak times so it is worth considering their low season if possible, January to February, and before Christmas, be warned though, even then there may be premium days. Meal plans can be found if you visit in the quieter periods. It is best to fly to Orlando International Airport (MCO), for many of the hotels on the park there is a limousine service. If budgets allow stay at a hotel within walking distance of a park and restaurants. Food, drink and shopping prices are high but standards generally good.
If you plan to stock up on jeans and trainers at the outlet stores, make sure you leave enough space in your case, and remember there is a customs allowance.
Walt Disney World