Shermanstravel Blog

Orlando

Disney Cinderella Castle at ChristmasTo say that Disney World in Orlando, Florida pulls out all the stops for the holidays is an understatement. Starting in September, the Magic Kingdom is decked out in fall and Halloween décor. The entire resort, including the parks and hotels, later makes the transition to Christmas decorations in November through the first couple days of the New Year. Wreaths, lights, garland — you name it, they’ve got it.

The holiday festivities alone are enough to draw in thousands of visitors during the last few months of the year. Here’s what you should know when traveling there during this season.

Read more

Disney Saratoga Springs Villa ResortDisney World hotels are designed for a variety of interests, budgets, and travel needs. The 20-some-odd hotels are divided into four resort categories: Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Deluxe Villas. The latter are ideal for those who’d like some extra space and the comforts of home while on vacation.

The Deluxe Villa resorts are made up of suites with studios and one-, two- and three-bedroom units, depending on the property. Some even have two-story Grand Villas. These resorts are primarily used by members of the Disney Vacation Club, Disney’s timeshare program, but non-members can stay when inventory is available.

So what’s there to know about staying at one of these resorts? Read on to find out.

Read more

Epcot Center Monorail Disney World Florida

Pop quiz: where can you find Florida’s third largest bus fleet?

Correct answer: Disney World.

With a bus fleet that’s third in size to the cities of Miami and Jacksonville, Disney World offers resort guests complimentary transportation.

Guests can forgo renting a car and take advantage of the bus service, plus get around via boats and monorails. Plus, getting to the resort from Orlando International Airport isn’t much of an issue with included motor coach transportation, including luggage transfers.

So what’s there to know about a transportation system that covers an area that’s twice the size of Manhattan? Here’s the scoop.

Read more

Flickr/Anna Fox - Epcot Flower Festival

Any trip to Disney World usually feels like a special event, but did you know that the resort hosts unique parties and festivals all year long? Here’s what you can expect from six of the most popular celebrations.

Read more

Disney World ClockVacation time is precious, and that’s especially true if you’re going to Walt Disney World — a destination that guarantees you’ll spend a lot of time waiting in line.

Here are five things that you can do before you leave home to save time on your Disney vacation.

Read more

Sandito Mojito, Cuba Libre OrlandoWe’re game to celebrate nearly every food- or drink-focused holiday (National Margarita Day, anyone?), so we’re excited that August is Rum Month. Rum is the elixir of both swash-buckling pirates and bleary-eyed Caribbean travelers alike. But some folks have rum misconceptions: They think only of umbrella-topped super-sweet frozen drinks or unimaginative soda mixes from their young-adult years. We’re here to open your eyes to a brave new world of this sugar cane-based liquid miracle. Beyond plain Bacardi, there are hundreds of varieties of rum — some as premium as any top-shelf cognac.

These 21 bars from coast-to-coast (and points in between) are serving up choice cocktails this month using rums you may not have heard of before. And don’t forget that Saturday, August 16 is officially National Rum Day. So raise a glass and say, “Aaar!”

Read more

Disney World Wait Times/Anna Elsa FrozenSeveral things are synonymous with Walt Disney World: iconic characters, turkey legs, Space Mountain, and long lines. Attractions without long lines are the anomaly, and not the rule, at the “Most Magical Place on Earth,” but that doesn’t mean you have to spend your whole vacation waiting.

Read on for nine tips to reduce your ride wait times.

Read more

10345848_462627130535904_8992955936428738830_n

While the 36 Disney-owned hotels at Walt Disney World Resort undoubtedly enhance your Magical Kingdom experience, they’re not the only way to go. On the resort are also other major hotel brands that have partnered with Disney to bring you official benefits and complimentary transportation to the key attractions. But prices are dramatically less expensive, so you can stay kind to the budget as you stick close to the magic. (Plus, for the points fanatics among us, you’ll be able to rack up or cash in those loyalty rewards.) Here are five such hotels, comparable to Disney’s “moderate” range, that present better deals than Disney’s own starting rates of $170 this month and next:

Read more

Flickr/Michael Gray - Fountain at Epcot CenterSummer’s here. In Orlando, that means high temperatures and even higher humidity. Here are ten spots throughout the Disney World parks where you can get some relief.

Read more

Disney World Monorail, Contemporary Resort, OrlandoClearly, 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.

Read more

Disney's Frozen-Themed Parade in OrlandoUnless 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…

Read more

620x400_FlickrJeffrey Zeldan_DisneyPresidentsDisney 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.

Read more

Southwest Southwest Airlines have been a major player in the U.S. market over the past few decades, but today it takes its first step into the big, wide world. As of July 1, Southwest has begun service to Aruba and Montego Bay, Jamaica, from Atlanta, Baltimore, and Orlando. In the coming months flights to the Bahamas, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic from other gateways will follow.

Read more

Universal Orlando ResortGet 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.

Read more

Disney's Blizzard BeachLike 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:

Read more

Sign up for the Top 25 Newsletter
to get exclusive weekly deals