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Clearly, Disney World offers a travel experience that you can’t exactly replicate anywhere else. From its signature rides to its extravagant parades and fireworks, no other amusement park does it quite like Disney. Its unique offerings go well beyond that, however. Here are some unique things that you never thought you’d find at an amusement park.
If you’ve ever planned, or are in the midst of planning, a Disney World vacation, you know that there are dozens of decisions to make. Where should you stay, and for how long? What kind of tickets are you going to buy? Where should you eat?
The last question might be the hardest to answer, because there are at least 80 table-service restaurants throughout the resort. Here are a few suggestions for different types of guests, and for those picky or adventurous eaters.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Disney’s animated film Frozen has become a global sensation since its release last year. It’s currently the highest-grossing animated film of all time, and the demand for film merchandise at Disney Stores led to the implementation of a limit of two items per guest. Guests hoping to meet the film’s animated stars, Anna and Elsa, in the Magic Kingdom have reported wait times of three to five hours.
Cashing in on the movie’s success, Disney is bringing more Frozen offerings to its parks this year, and even to its Disney Cruise Line and Adventures by Disney vacation company in 2015. Here’s what’s brewing…
Disney World clearly covers all the bases when it comes to creating a whimsical atmosphere, from naming the rides, to piping the scent of freshly baked cookies out onto Main Street, USA.
So it’s no surprise that the Disney Imagineers have come up with some Disney-specific terms for even the most basic concepts, such as what they call their park employees and extended hours.
Here are 10 of the most common Disney terms to remember.
Museums can take years, even decades, of planning. These eight concepts have had a long and sometimes bumpy road on the way to becoming a reality, but we’re already big fans and looking forward to the ribbon-cutting dates. If you’re traveling to these cities in the next couple of years, here are the museums of the future to include on your itinerary:
Get ready to apparate over to Universal Orlando this summer as the theme park resort officially opens its highly-anticipated Harry Potter addition, Diagon Alley.The new section is an expansion of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which first opened in 2010 with the Hogsmeade section.
Now Muggles, wizards, and witches of all ages can walk the streets of London, pick up Hogwarts supplies, and do some banking at Gringotts. Before it officially opens to the public on July 8, here’s a list of five fun things you’ll be able to do in Diagon Alley.
Some travelers might head out on an African safari to encounter exotic species or sail up a fjord in Norway for the dramatic scenery. But just two and a half hours by plane from Miami and not quite four from NYC, Puerto Rico contains a whole hidden world of natural wonders that satisfy both instincts. Here are six unforgettable experiences that you don’t have to go far for or spend a lot on — flights can be had for under $200-$300 round-trip, depending on your departure city.
It isn’t just the quaint coastal communities, museum-quality art galleries, and scenic state parks that make Door County one of the Midwest’s most popular summer destinations. Known as the Cape Cod of the Midwest, this northern Wisconsin peninsula attracts thrifty travelers with its bounty of free and nearly-free things to do along the shores of Lake Michigan. Here’s what to do and how to stretch your dollar here:
Like most visitors to Walt Disney World in Orlando, you’ve probably spent a lot of time planning your vacation. Your full days are booked with park-hopping, but your arrival and departure dates can leave you with awkward amounts of time to fill. This can get especially tricky if you’re tired from a flight, or feeling overwhelmed from a week of non-stop theme parks.
Many guests opt to spend these first and last days in the park, soaking up every precious minute with rides and attractions, but here are some other options:
For many Americans, a winter trip to Florida is a yearly ritual. But many don’t realize that it’s worthy of a visit any time of year. While it’s hot throughout most of the country come summer, Florida boasts beautiful beaches and tropical tranquility. Even better: when you go off-season, you can indulge in the luxuries you might not be able to afford at in spring or fall.
The state’s two coasts are unique, each offering charm and beauty all their own. Pick a coast, grab a fantastic off-season deal at a luxe property, and then relax and enjoy the views, smaller crowds, and ocean breezes. Read more
When it comes to hotels, it’s always refreshing to see new takes on the four-walls-and-a-bed formula. In these five treehouse suites, woodsy interiors, jacuzzi tubs, and floor-to-ceiling windows give the idea of a childhood hideout a creative update. If you’re ready to stay among the treetops, and shell out some major cash, you too can have this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
By now you’ve likely heard about the controversy surrounding SeaWorld. As a result of the documentary film Blackfish, and its exposure of what animal rights advocates claim is mistreatment of the orcas used in SeaWorld shows, calls for a boycott of the marine mammal theme park chain have grown. The debate goes on: SeaWorld released an open letter stating that, among other things, their research on captive whales benefits those in the wild, but the Oceanic Preservation Society then rebutted the claims.
And there are signs that public opinion is turning against the theme parks. The company recently posted a 13 percent drop in attendance. If you the claims have gotten the better of your conscience and you’re looking for an alternative, here are seven places in North America where you see the same animals that you’ll find at SeaWorld, but in their natural habitats. Read more
New York City may be at its most appealing in the summertime (picnic in Central Park, anyone?) – but that doesn’t mean you can’t justify a long weekend in the country. Even if you’re not quite cut out for life in the stables, that fresh air is bound to do you good. Here, three upstate farm B&Bs for an affordable escape from the hustle and bustle:
With kids getting out of school for the summer, it’s a great time to book a stay at the just-opened Great Wolf Lodge New England. It’s the latest opening for the family-friendly chain of resorts and indoor water parks, located one hour from Boston. To celebrate the resort’s opening, you can save 30 percent when you stay through December 18. Nightly rates with the special offer start at $154 for a suite that sleeps up to six people, and $230 for a Grand KidCabin Suite that sleeps up to 10 people. That’s about a $50 savings on regular rates. Read more
Roughly one million people visit Alaska’s ports as a part of the cruising season each year. That’s a lot of people between May and September. Thankfully, there are a few ways you can avoid getting lost in the mass influx. Here’s how:
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