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Thinking About WDW

Interested In Visiting Walt Disney World?

Welcome to everything Disney, Walt Disney World that is. Below are links to in-depth articles on where to stay, how to get ready for a visit, where to eat and things to do.

Epcot Flower and Garden Show

We first visited WDW forty years ago and now live less than twenty miles away. Over the years we have seen a lot of changes and we’ve learned a few things. Let us share our ideas and tips on visiting Walt Disney World.

The Happiest Place On Earth!  Without question, WDW is the most visited vacation destination in the world, paying host to forty million visitors a year. Adding to that the city of Orlando also features Universal Studios, Sea World and over a dozen additional major tourist attractions. All this adds up to a must-do vacation destination for a lot of families the world over.

Far and away the star of the Orlando attractions is Walt Disney World, an attraction like no other that draws visitors from all around the world.

10 Things To Consider Before You Visit WDW. If you are planning a visit in the future we have some advice to help make the most of your vacation.

First and very important is to start making reservations as far in advance as possible. Decide if you will stay inside the “World” or at one of the seemingly thousands of additional resorts outside the Disney property. Restaurants and special events are in high demand and the sooner you start making reservations the better your chances of getting what you want. You will also want to start making park reservations and begin selecting rides to book. Disney has an App for that.

Where To Stay. Our recommendation is to stay inside the “World”. While it is true you can save money and often get more for your money staying off property, you will miss staying in the heart of the excitement. Often staying inside WDW can add hours of time to your park visits. First, you are already nearby when the parks open and in addition each day a different park has early or late extra hours for WDW resort guests only. Usually the gates open an hour early or are extended an hour longer.

A World of Foods To Experience. There was a time when a visit to WDW meant a day or two of fast food. No more! Walt Disney World has more restaurants, snack bars, cafes and lounges, food trucks and dinner shows than can be counted. While we would never characterize food at WDW as a bargain it is also remarkably varied and extremely good. Several are rated on the best in America list. Get an early start on where you plan to eat.

Special Events and More. Maybe you are planning your first trip to WDW but the people at Disney World have additional plans for you. You can think of it as them just wanting to make your visit extra special but actually they really want you to come back over and over again. These offerings include Christmas parties, Food and Wine Festivals, Flower and Garden Shows, behind the scenes tours, special park events and hours, marathons…  Find out all that’s going on.

Approaching The Magic Kingdom at dusk

Getting Around WDW. One of the things that’s great about Walt Disney World is the adventure of just getting around the “World”. From boats and ferries to monorails and sky cars getting there is all part of the fun.

Magic Bands and the Genie App. When it started you could only get a Magic Band if you where a Disney hotel guest but now with the Genie App and your MyDisney account reservations you had to have a hotel reservation too. Things have changed. Now if you have purchased park tickets and created a My Disney account (anyone can register for free), you can now make a number of reservations before you travel to WDW.

A Brief History of Disney World. About fifty years ago Walt Disney opened a vacation and entertainment complex on the west side of Orlando, Florida. Not wanting to repeat the mistake of Disneyland in Anaheim, California, where the park was sited on a piece of land surrounded by property owned by a multitude of other interests. This time they secretly began buying massive tracks of land just west of the city ending up with about thirty-nine square miles of what used to be swamp and orange groves.

When Walt Disney World opened it comprised two theme parks and three resort hotels that included The Magic Kingdom, Epcot, The Contemporary and Polynesian resorts and a property on the golf course appropriately named The Golf Resort (now called Shades of Green for exclusive use of active military)  along with a shopping area called Lake /Buena Vista along with a private hotel area.

Dusk at Disney Springs

Today WDW includes four theme parks, The Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney Studios and Animal Kingdom along with two water parks, Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. There are now four golf courses, Thirty six Disney owned resort hotels (soon to add two more) seven separate time-share resorts (Disney Vacation Club resorts [DVC]) and an expanded shopping and entertainment district, Disney Springs. There is also a sports complex and a campground (the campground was actually part of the original “World”).

In addition there are major additions and upgrades being made to several parks, upgrades to WDW transportation network and a Star Wars Experience Resort. The people at Disney are hard at work trying to come up with reasons why you need to visit more often.

REVIEWS AND WORTHWHILE LINKS

A FEW REVIEWS & IDEAS

GOOD LINKS FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Walt Disney World home page HERE
  • Calendar of WDW special events HERE
  • Dining Guide to WDW HERE
  • The Disney Food Blog HERE
  • My Disney Experience HERE

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