WHETHER you’ve already traveled to the land of sunshine and smiles—or would like to—Orlando, Florida has new experiences to excite the entire family. Here are 10 new reasons to visit:
1. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train—the new family coaster within New Fantasyland at Walt Disney World Resort—transports guests on a musical ride into the mine “where a million diamonds shine.”
2. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter−Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando Resort features shops, a restaurant and an innovative attraction based on Gringotts bank. Guests will be able to travel between the theme park’s “London” and Hogsmeade aboard the Hogwarts Express.
3. DUPLO Valley at LEGOLAND−Florida brings the line of preschool building toys to life for toddlers with new farm-themed attractions and water play area.
4. Ihu’s Breakaway Falls, Orlando’s tallest, steepest free-fall water slide at Aquatica−SeaWorld’s Waterpark.
5. The retro-inspired Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort, with moderately priced suites and rooms, features a bowling alley, two massive pools with sand beaches and a lazy river.
6. Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort exudes luxury with a full-service spa, Tom Fazio−designed golf course, three restaurants and an elaborate pool area.
7. In the heart of downtown Orlando is the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, the new home for Broadway shows and Orlando Ballet, among others. The arts center has two performance theaters, a 300-seat community theater, outdoor plaza and banquet room.
8. The new I-Drive Indoor Kart Racing multilevel entertainment center meets visitors’ need for speed with a half-mile track for electric-powered go-karts. There are also bowling lanes and an arcade.
9. The rooftop steakhouse, Capa, at the Four Seasons Resort Orlando, Walt Disney World Resort, has Spanish-influenced cuisine and nightly views of fireworks.
10. It’s all about Southern comfort food at THE COOP in Winter Park, a foodie haven of classic Southern dishes such as chicken and waffles, deviled eggs, buttermilk biscuits, po’ boys and artisanal pies.
For information on visiting Orlando, Florida, discount attraction tickets, and to order a free vacation planning kit, go to VisitOrlando.com. Also connect at Twitter.com/VisitOrlando and Facebook.com/VisitOrlando. North American Precis Syndicate