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Orlando Attractions

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Walt Disney World Resort - Orlando Attractions

The Walt Disney World Resort covers over 47 square miles, which means it’s really big. Huge. Don’t expect to see everything in a day or two here, allow a full seven days to make the most of it on your Orlando holiday. There’s the Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, Disney MGM Studios, Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Blizzard Beach, River Country, Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort, Pleasure Island Jazz Company, Downtown Disney's West Side, Downtown Disney's Marketplace, Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex, and more!

Cirque du Soleil - Attractions in Orlando

Cirque du Soleil, in Walt Disney World, is not a circus in the traditional sense, there are no tents involved! However, there are dozens of performers flying round in a frightening way, leaping up walls, charging all over the place and being generally dramatic. There’s great music throughout and no wild animals were harmed in the making of this performance. It’s more like going to a great West End show than a traditional circus, and not to be missed on your Orlando holiday.

Disney MGM Studios - Attractions Tickets Orlando

This is the Disney theme park with a movie and TV theme throughout. There’s the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, and all sorts of interactive in-studio style attractions to take part in. The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is the ride you might have seen either on the television or in your worst nightmares. You’re trapped in a hotel elevator and you know it’s going to plunge to the ground at any minute. The ride is different every time – totally random! Blimey, imagine going all that way on holiday to Orlando and getting trapped in a plunging elevator – by choice!

DisneyQuest Indoor Interactive Theme Park - Orlando Attractions

There are five floors of interactive attractions at this Interactive Theme Park bit of Walt Disney World. It combines Disney with the kind of technology you normally only see on TV. For instance, design your own rollercoaster on computer then immediately sit in a simulator and ride it! Now where else can you do that? Go on, name the place. If you can come up with another place on the planet where you can design a rollercoaster then ride it on a simulator, we’ll… Ah, WonderWorks up the road. You can do it there too apparently. Grrr.

Disney’s Blizzard Beach - Attractions in Orlando

The Disney version of a water park, which features one of the tallest, fastest free-fall slides in the world is a great place to cool off after your first few days at Walt Disney World. Chuck your children down the massive slide and see them hurtle off into the distance at 55 mph, never to be seen again. Beautiful.

Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park - Orlando Attractions

Here you go, those favourite Disney themes of fantasy in one Magic Kingdom. The Magic Carpets of Aladdin, Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, Haunted House, and Space Mountain are here. There are new attractions being added every year, or at least every time they add a new attraction. It’s all Pirates of the Caribbean at the moment. Fantastic.

Disney’s Miniature Golf Courses - Attractions in Orlando

A coupleof American specialities here, with these miniature golf courses. You might be more used to miniature golf as something that’s been left to crumble a little, usually in an older municipal park in a dusty corner of the UK somewhere. However in the US it’s very different and more like bowling. No not the crown green type of bowling, the expensive night out with a bar kind-of bowling. For instance, on the Fantasia course the interactive obstacles play music and all sorts of multimedia things when your ball goes in the right direction, while statues of Disney’s hippos dance around you.

There aren’t any alcohol serving bars in Disney’s Magic Kingdom of course, excepx the exclusive and legendary ‘Club 33’, which is tucked away in New Orleans Square and only for the rich and famous, not the likes of us.

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park - Orlando Attractions

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park is another Disney take on the water park theme, but this time it’s all surfing pools, enclosed waterslides, and play areas for the tiny people in your family. Certainly worth cooling off here some afternoons.

Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex - Attractions in Orlando

This, which you might notice on the Disney maps, is actually a series of venues for sporting events. However, these tend to be American sports, such as baseball, or ‘rounders’ as we call it here, and American Football, or that unfathomable game they where they wear helmets, jodhpurs, and all the padding under the sun, in case they might tumble badly. Don’t expect any cricket or soccer, but there might be some basketball, which is pretty cool.

Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede - Orlando Attractions

Oh heavens to Betsy. We’ve regularly had afternoons at Beat the Brochure where we debate nothing excepx what goes on at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede. We all have our own private versions of possible events and sometimes act them out. However, we recently discovered the truth. Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede involves a spectacular show of people charging round on horses and eating dinner. It’s you, the audience, that eats the dinner of course.

Epcot - Attractions in Orlando

Epcot is reported to stand for ‘Experimental Prototype Community’ and a great favourite out of all the Disney theme parks. It’s massive. It was the largest building project on the planet when it was built. World showcase is in here and a useful tip from the Beat the Brochure team is that you can buy alcohol in most of the restaurants in World Showcase. You can even get fish and chips in the ‘Untied Kingdom’ part, which is all The Beatles, a village pub, tea, and a typical English garden, which includes a maze. You might want to have a word with them about that.

Fantasy of Flight - Orlando Attractions

This isn’t anything to do with Disney. It’s an aircraft collection on the way to Tampa, but don’t hang up yet! It’s a great day out for the entire family and you admission includes: Parking, Immersion Experience, Fighter Town, Restoration Shop Tour, Back Lot Tour, Video Presentations, and ‘Aircraft of the Day’.

We’re a little worried about the Immersion Experience as the Beat the Brochure team don’t like being immersed in anything as a rule, especially when they’re not expecting it. However, we checked it out, and it involves being immersed in the reality of a B-17 bombing raid using multimedia, not being immersed in a tank of water stuffed with a herd of starving alligators or anything. They should make that more clear really.

Discovery Cove - Attractions in Orlando

This tropical paradise enables you to go snorkelling with stingrays (hmmm, if you pay extra can you go snorkelling without stingrays?) and mingling with birds in the aviary. This is the famous dolphin encounter place, where – for some expense – you can book a place to go swimming with dolphins in a half hour dolphin encounter. It isn’t cheap, but it’s not often you’ll get the opportunity to support dolphin conversation and shake hands with a dolphin at the same time.

Gatorland - Orlando Attractions

Gatorland is close to the main Orlando attractions. 100’s of alligators and crocodiles live here, so the name is quite appropriate. There’s a petting zoo, bird sanctuary, mini-water park, eco-tour and even daily alligator wrestling. A petting zoo in an alligator park? Is that a good idea? But what’s this ‘daily alligator wrestling’? A petting zoo and alligator wrestling? Is there a link there at all? Is the alligator wrestling entirely voluntary? Hmmm…

Holy Land Experience - Attractions in Orlando

This is what Orlando is all about! How could you go all that way and not spend a day in the Holy Land? EVERY day even? Travel back in time 2000 years to this living biblical museum. There’s a Jerusalem street market, and fantastic shows detailing the life and activity of the chap the book was about. It’s educational, inspirational, historical and a lot safer than actually going to Jerusalem.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex - Orlando Attractions

About 45 minutes from Orlando you can tour launch areas, see giant rockets, go in spaceflight simulators, and more. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is open every day excepx Christmas and some launch days. Bus tours run every 15 minutes with stops at an observation gantry and the Apollo Saturn V Center. No stowing away on any space shuttles please.

Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf - Attractions in Orlando

You might notice one or two of these crazy golf courses in Orlando. Give them a go! The adventures and legends of infamous pirates come to life as you enter a world of 18th century buccaneers! Sunken ships, waterfalls, dreaded pirate dungeons and lush, tropical vegetation abounds. And watch out for stray cannon shots from the wily skeleton lofting cannon fire from his old raft! It’s like being in that episode of the Simpsons. You know, the one where they go to the crazy golf course.

SeaWorld Adventure Park - Attractions Tickets Orlando

Sea-themed rides abound here, including Orlando’s longest, tallest, fastest floorless roller coaster (be careful where you put your feet). There’s Shark Encounter, where you encounter a shark, and more animals, including polar bears (Ooo... Monsieur Polar…), killer whales, beluga whales, manatees, sea lions, penguins, and dolphins.

Skull Kingdom - Attractions in Orlando

This is a haunted castle for all ages, as long as you don’t mind being scared witless. Skull Kingdom's Day Show involves you and your children being led through the castle by an experienced adventure guide, which should give you a better chance of making it through alive. You are given a torch, just in case.

The guide lets you explore each room and there are scary surprises round every corner. Don’t worry though, the ghouls and zombies you encounter are only actors. Or are they?

Don’t forget this is litigious America so the chances of you or any members of your family being scared literally to death are remote. Instead it’s a great surprise for your family, especially if they were expecting to spend all day everyday in the baking sun. The damp, dark and misty corridors of a spooky old building will make a pleasant change. Unless you’ve ever rented a flat in Southend, in which case Skull Kingdom will remind you not to do it again.

Universal Studios - Attractions Tickets Orlando

That famous Jaws experience is here! But there’s lots more too, there’s Twister, Back to the Future, and Shrek 4-D rides as well. You can experience an earthquake' and visit the stage sets with reproductions of New York or San Francisco street scenes.

Universal’s Islands of Adventure - Orlando Attractions

This is the home of thrill rides and attractions including The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, which is generally regarded as the best theme park ride there is anywhere in the world, Jurassic Park River Adventure, The Incredible Hulk and the Dueling Dragons coasters. Cat in the Hat provides a journey through Dr. Seuss’s popular book.

Wet ‘n Wild - Attractions in Orlando

Waterslides, a wave pool, water playground, child-size versions of the most popular rides, and mini-golf are here to give you a more relaxing day to break up an otherwise theme park-filled fortnight.

WonderWorks - Orlando Attractions

Central Florida’s only upside down attraction! An amusement park for the mind, that’s WonderWorks, which is the amazing upside down house you might notice on your travels around Orlando. It’s the home of more than 100 interactive exhibits that deploy sophisticated multimedia to let you do such amazing things as: design your own roller coaster and then ride it, go hang gliding in the Grand Canyon, or play in the world’s largest laser tag arcade.

World of Orchids - Attractions in Orlando

Over 1000 orchids are displayed in their natural jungle setting here, with streams, waterfalls, and parrots. This is a proper facility that sends orchids off all over the world, but you can easily spend a few hours wandering round the jungle exhibit – and it’s free!


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