Four unique parks
The four mega parks are undoubtedly the biggest draws of the Walt Disney World Resort. Massive in size and packed with activities, each will easily fill a day of its own.
The Magic Kingdom is where the Walt Disney World magic first began. That’s where you’ll find Cinderella’s iconic castle, flanked by Mickey Mouse and Tinkerbell, iconic Disney princesses and a nightly fireworks display that never fails to dazzle. It’s also the home of some of the resort’s most hair-raising rides, including the swashbuckling Pirates of the Caribbean ride and Thunder Mountain.
Next up is Epcot and its famed Spaceship Earth in the centre, which looks like an oversized golfball. It’s here that 11 pavilions exhibit countries from around the world, including their cuisine and Disney princess. The oceans are represented too, with Finding Nemo-themed activities.
Then there’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where all-things Star Wars take the stage, along with the high rise Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. It’s also where favourite Disney movies come to life with live action stage productions.
Finally Disney’s Animal Kingdom comes in, roaring and clawing. Anchored by the Tree of Life, which has 325 animals carved into its trunk, the park is home to exotic animals, wild roller coasters and shows featuring your favourite Disney animal characters like Nemo, Simba and Baloo from the Jungle Book.
Also within the Walt Disney World Resort family are the resort’s two waterparks, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. The former is a tropical oasis while the latter follows a chillier theme. Both, however, are treated to waterslides, wave pools and lazy rivers that offer a refreshing way to cool off in the Florida heat.
Sportier types can take solace in the massive ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. It’s made up of 230 acres of state-of-the-art facilities that host more than 60 sports and countless sporting events. There’s also a chance to escape the Disney hubbub entirely with the resort’s four golf courses, where the bunkers have Mickey Mouse ears.
Dining with Disney
It’s safe to say you’ll never go hungry on a family holiday to Walt Disney World Resort. Scattered throughout each of the parks are themed restaurants, from a 50s diner in Disney’s Hollywood Studio to Japanese cuisine in Epcot and a sports grill at the ESPN Wide World of Sports. And don’t even get us started on the restaurants located within the array of Disney hotels. If it’s not gourmet, Disney doesn’t do it.
The gift shops attached to various Disney rides are about as much of an attraction as the rides themselves. But for an even further array of gifts and goodies to remember your Disney extravaganza by, there’s Disney Springs, a cosmopolitan shopping, dining and nightlife experience.
Amid an array of waterfront cafes and restaurants, you’ll find Disney-themed boutiques and toy shops, plus name brand designers like Kate Spade, Lacoste and Lucky. Souvenirs here range from Star Wars Legos to diamond jewellery and Mickey Mouse candy.
And when night falls and the fireworks fizzle out over Cinderella’s Castle, Disney Springs keeps the energy alive with a nightlife scenein the form of live entertainment and an assortment of restaurant-bars. After a long day of character meet-and-greets and roller coaster rides, a cold margarita and musicians performing at the waterfront stage await.