Disney is all about dreams. Even better, it is about dreams with happy endings! “When you wish upon a star”, as the song goes, there is the hope and expectation that marvelous things will happen. When Walt Disney designed the Magic Kingdom, it was with this in mind, and the result is far beyond what was anticipated. As soon as Disneyworld opened in the 1960s, families flocked to its gates. Their children and grandchildren have followed year by year in ever greater numbers.
What is the most exciting and memorable experience you can envision? Is it looking out your hotel window across the plains of Africa and watching a giraffe gracefully loping along? Or do you see in you mind’s eye the cloudless, blue Florida sky from which the sun will rise on your wedding day? Disney weddings are at the pinnacle of perfection. The couple arrives at the wedding chapel in a Rolls Royce, attended by a footman. Following the ceremony, a reception may be held in one of the gardens or in a tastefully appointed dining room with a musical ensemble (or a DJ) providing the entertainment. There is the option of choosing to have dessert in another country, as the wedding party adjourns to their chosen destination at Epcot.
Recently, a couple who work in a London hospital dined with their wedding guests at the Grand Floridian and then traveled to the British sector of Epcot for tea and cakes, followed by the all American fireworks display on the lake.
Whatever your hopes and dreams, chances are they can be realized while vacationing in this wonderland of possibilities.
B- City Information:
Population: 47,814 (Disney World and Kissimmee)
Elevation: 70 Feet Above Sea Level
Land Area: 16.7 Square Miles
Location: Disney World (Lake Buena Vista) is located 77 miles east of Tampa, 220 Miles northwest of Miami and 162 miles southwest of Jacksonville. Major interstates–I-95, I-75, and I-10–provide access into Florida from the north, with connections directly into the area via I-4, the Florida Turnpike, and US 192. I-75, I-95, and the Florida Turnpike provide quick access from south Florida.
Time Zone: Disney World (Lake Buena Vista) is located in the Eastern Time Zone (when it’s noon at Disney World, it’s 11:00am in Chicago and 9:00am in Los Angeles). Disney World observes Daylight Savings Time from April – October.
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Snow Days – None!!!!
Disney World enjoys a year round warm climate. The winter is popular with many tourists as the temperatures average in the low-mid 60’s F, the perfect time to enjoy this truly remarkable world known attraction as well as the numerous other sites and attractions which make up this number 1 tourist area in the world. In the spring, fall and winter, it is usually less crowded with the exception of spring break and when large convention groups are in town.Shorts are acceptable wear at all of the major attractions and most restaurants. It is also the perfect time to enjoy one of the numerous water theme parks in the area. Jump in and cool off, the waters fine!
How to Get There
Orlando International Airport
Orlando International is 25 miles east of Walt Disney World and 20 miles south of downtown. At rush hour (7-9am and 4-6pm), the drive can be a torturous hour or more; at other times, it’s about 30 to 40 minutes.
Driving to Disney World
To get from the airport to the attractions, take the North exit out of the airport to Highway 528 West. Follow signs to I-4; it takes about 30 to 40 minutes to get to Disney World if the traffic isn’t too heavy (double or worse in rush hour or when there’s an accident). When you get to I-4, follow the signs west toward the attractions.
An Alternative: Orlando Sanford International Airport
Is much smaller than the main airport, but it has grown a bit in recent years. The airport has most of the major car rental desks on site. Mears Transportation shuttles also serve it.
Kissimmee Gateway Airport
301 N. Dyer Blvd., Suite 101
Kissimmee, FL 34741
Located near Orlando, just eight miles from Disney World and ten miles from the Orlando-Orange County Convention center, Kissimmee Gateway Airport (ISM)
Driving to Disney is easy, too! Major interstates–I-95, I-75, and I-10–provide access into Florida from the north, with connections directly into the area via I-4, the Florida Turnpike, and US 192. I-75, I-95, and the Florida Turnpike provide quick access from south Florida.
Greyhound Bus Terminal
103 East Dakin Avenue
Kissimmee, FL 34741
111 Dakin St.
Kissimmee, FL 34741
C- Attractions/Things To Do:
Area Designations and Some Highlights Within Disney World
Main Street, USA
Walt Disney World Railroad
Town Square Exhibition Hall
Swiss Family Treehouse
Pirates of the Caribbean
Tom Sawyer Island
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
The Hall of Presidents
Liberty Belle Riverboat
The Haunted Mansion
Fairy Tale Garden
Peter Pan’s Flight
It’s a Small World
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Mickey’s Toontown Fair
Mickey’s Country House
Toontown Hall of Fame
The Extraterrestrial Alien Encounter
Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
Tomorrowland Indy Speedway
The Living Seas
Ice Station Cool
Circle of Life
Honey, I Shrunk the Audience
Automobile Test Track
Wonders of Life
Universe of Energy
Pavilions, shops, restaurants, and attractions that capture the essence of countries around the world surround the vast World Showcase Lagoon.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster
Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage
The Magic of Disney Animation
Voyage of the Little Mermaid
Who Wants to be a Millionaire: Play It
American Film Institute Showcase
The Great Movie Ride
Sounds Dangerous starring Drew Carey
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
Star Tours (based on Star Wars)
Jim Henson’s Muppets Vision 3-D
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure
D- Family Fun Attractions:
Main Disney Destinations for the Family
Animal Kingdom Lodge
African Wildlife Preserve
Features story time beside the lobby fireplace and a continuous and fascinating view of the animals on the savannah.
Features the Keister Coaster, a 200 foot water slide, and traditional Boardwalk treats reminiscent of Turn of the Century (early 1900s) Atlantic City.
In the Magic Kingdom.
Features Chef Mickey’s fabulous meals; also fireworks at night, all in a high-tech, retrofuturistic setting.
A lavish, Victorian seaside resort in the Magic Kingdom area.
Features Honeymoon suites, afternoon tea, and many activities for children.
South Pacific theme in the Magic Kingdom area.
Features white sand beaches, tropical lagoons, and a pool with slide and waterfall…also a fabulous weekend Luau .
Swan and Dolphin
Maritime theme in the Epcot area.
Features swan-shaped paddle boats and a small, private beach.
Celebrates the grand lodges of America’s National Parks. (Magic Kingdom area)
Features totem poles, and erupting geyser, and hot springs whirlpools.
Yacht and Beach Club
Cape Cod ambience in the Epcot area.
Features Stormalong Bay: a sand-bottomed, three acre pool with water jets, a series of water slides, and a shipwreck!
Disney’s Old Key West
Key West theme in downtown Disney
Features Tiny Tot Tea Parties, Unbirthday Parties, and a homey, village atmosphere.
Disney’s Saratoga Springs
Historic Saratoga Springs atmosphere in Downtown Disney area.
Features beautiful gardens, restful pathways on which to wander, and a kids only water spray pool.
Tropical Islands in the Epcot area.
Features the Fortress Pool and Parrot Cay Island, and a secluded, sandy beach.
Mexico and southwest US theme in the Animal Kingdom area.
Features The Dig Site with its Mayan Temple.
Port Orleans and Riverside French Quarter
Antebellum South and New Orleans French Quarter themes. Located in Downtown Disney.
Features a pool, fishing hole, and playground at Riverside’s Ol’ Man Island, and a sea serpent themed family pool at the French Quarter’s Doubloon Lagoon.
All Star Movies, Music, and Sports
A comic strip theme; located in the Animal Kingdom area.
Features All Stars Jazz and Broadway Music areas.
American pop culture theme.
Celebrates pop history. Features a stste-of-the-art arcade; a playground and interactive water fountain.
Rustic woods theme.
Features pony rides, hayrides, a petting farm, and a blacksmith’s shop. Also a nightly campfire circle complete with roasted marshmallows.
E- Events & Entertainment:
Walt Disney World Marathon
Some 15,000 entrants run through several theme parks. Live bands, hot air balloons, and Disney characters cheer the runners on. There is also a 5K run for children.
Wide World of Sports Complex
Atlanta Braves Spring TrainingAtlanta Braves Spring Training
Be up close as the Braves battle it out with some of the best in in this on-site ballpark.
Mid-April –early June
Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival
Have a field day as Epcot celebrates spring with a colorful array of fragrant flowers, elaborate gardens and Disney-themed topiaries.
May and June
Star Wars Weekends
Weekends in May and June
Disney salutes the “Star Wars saga with celebrities and characters from the movies.
Night of Joy Contemporary Christian Music concerts. 407-827-7200.
FUNAI Golf Classic at Walt Disney World Resort
The Classic features golf’s greatest pros, challenging each other on Disney’s magnificent Palm and Magnolia courses.
Epcot International Food and Wine Festival
October 1 – Mid-November
Sample delectable dishes and wonderful wines from around the world.
Festival of the Masters
Inspire your artistic side at one of the most acclaimed and eclectic open air art festivals in the country. Voila! You’re in the picture.
ABC Super Soap Weekend
Meet and greet popular stars from your favorite ABC daytime dramas.
The Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights
End of November- January 2
Check at 407-934-7639 for updates on this popular event..
Holidays Around the World (Epcot)
Late November – Late December
Discover the joy of holiday celebrations, customs and characters from different countries and diverse cultures all around the world.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Late November and early December
Join the celebration and make your holiday the merriest with this festive party – the best gift that you can’t fit under your tree.
Festival of the Seasons
Thanksgiving weekend – December 24
Stroll down this holiday haven of shops, entertainment and good cheer. Enjoy the festive atmosphere as Downtown Disney celebrates the season.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Several nights during the first three weeks of December. Includes snow flurries and hot cocoa on Main Street. Includes Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parade and a holiday edition of fireworks.
Mickey’s Jingle Jangle Parade
End of November – January 2
Celebrate the holiday season on the savannah with this spectacular parade.
Pleasure Island New Year’s Eve
Make a resolution to dance the night away at the most stupendous New Year’s Eve street party around.
New Year’s Eve at Cirque du Soleil
Celebrate the New Year with the captivating and spellbinding spectacle of La Nouba.
Atlantic Dance Hall New Year’s Eve
December 31, 2004
Move into the New Year dancing and dining to the latest sounds in an atmosphere of timeless elegance.