What you probably don’t know, is that all of those attractions are in the same park – Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Maybe, maybe you can picture the famous Epcot golf ball, which is actually called, “Spaceship Earth.” Those are just a few attractions from 2 theme parks out of Disney’s 4 – each of which is divided into different areas. That doesn’t even include the areas not covered under one of the the theme parks.
You might be planning your entire Disney vacation around a few iconic images, and not really know the full extent of what Walt Disney World Resort can offer you and your family. Family members of any age will no doubt find something surprising and wonderful!
Here are a few Disney parks, attractions, and events you have probably never heard of to pique your curiosity and help guide you in planning to perfect Walt Disney World vacation.
Florida Resident Discounts
To start small, all you Floridians out there have no excuse not to know this – there are Disney discounts just for you. That’s right, there are special offers and discounts for Florida residents. You can even receive discounts on vacation packages that are already discounted! Florida resident discounts save you, on average, 50%. That’s huge! If you live in Florida, you have no excuse not to seek out and find every attraction, event and ride at Disney. Sorry, non-Floridians!
Cirque Du Soleil La Nouba
Here’s something you can enjoy even if you are not from Florida! Cirque Du Soleil, the famous touring acrobatic performance troupe has a permanently installed show in the Downtown Disney area of the Walt Disney World Resort. The show is called “La Nouba” which translates to “to live it up!” It delivers everything the Cirque Du Soleil promises and more. Because they are in a custom built indoor theatre space built specifically for the La Nouba show, the way the show interacts with the surrounding environment is unique. If the touring Cirque Du Soleil shows never seem to come to you, fear not, you can come to La Nouba in its home in Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.
Disney Water Parks
Walt Disney is famous for its theme parks, which while worthy of the praise they receive, unfortunately overshadow another of Disney’s great boasts – its water parks. Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach are the first and second most visited water parks in the entire world, respectively. Each has a few of the world’s “blank”est this or thats. Typhoon Lagoon has the world’s largest wave pool, and Blizzard Beach has one of the world’s only side-by-side racing slides, the world’s longest family white water raft ride, and the 5th highest point in Florida – Mount Gushmore.
DisneyQuest is a 5-story indoor interactive theme park. You are, of course, wondering what the heck an indoor interactive theme park is, and how to teleport yourself there. DisneyQuest is a totally unique techno sort of take on the idea of a theme park.
It is a standalone complex, with 5 floors filled with 3-D interactive virtual reality games ranging from sport-themed to pirate-themed to comic book adventure-themed. There is also a floor dedicated to art and creativity – you can actually learn how to accurately draw your favorite Disney characters step-by-step, even if you aren’t artistic. Truly, there is something for everyone in the DisneyQuest Indoor Interactive Theme Park.
It is a great way to experience all sorts of attractions without all the walking in between. It’s also a great option for rainy summer days. Plus, DisneyQuest is open after normal park hours, so at the end of the day, if you don’t want the fun to stop, it doesn’t have to!
Speaking of afterhours fun, if you want something to do, besides return to the luxurious comfort of your resort hotel that is, you can wander the streets of the Downtown Disney area. The Downtown Disney Area includes the Downtown Disney Marketplace and the Downtown Disney West Side, both with their own strengths to offer.
Disney’s Marketplace Area has some of the best shopping in the entire world, especially if you, or someone in your family loves Disney. In addition to what you might expect from a resort, i.e. souvenirs, sunglasses, and t-shirts, the Disney Marketplace offers a wide selection of specialty shops, fashion boutiques, import galleries, and just plain fun and different shops. The Marketplace is home to the largest selection of Disney Merchandise in the World – World of Disney. The store is 51,000 square feet and filled to the brim with all things Disney! From men’s clothes to kid’s toys, if it has something to do with Disney you are likely to find it in this amazing store.
Disney’s Downtown Area West Side is just plain a lovely place to spend an evening. Home to a wide array of the finest restaurants, a few scattered shops, and last but not least, entertainment. Disney’s West Side is where the Cirque Du Soleil show “La Nouba” lives. It is also home to the House of Blues restaurant auditorium and the DisneyQuest Indoor Interactive Theme Park – where you know you want to be right now!
Something For Everyone
The really great thing about Walt Disney World Resort is that there is truly something for everyone. Whether it be Atlanta Braves spring training at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and all of its attractions therein, to name a few, or something a bit more obscure like the aforementioned attractions, Walt Disney World Resort is really, truly meant for everyone to enjoy.
There are even guest services to help guests with disabilities so that no one has to miss out on the magic and fun of a stay at one of Disney’s finest resort hotels, the enjoyment of their fine dining or their theme parks & water parks.Herb Leibacher