Florida Guide > Planning your Trip
Advice on Theme Parks
Advice from an expert (me!) on theme parks
I have been going to Orlando for 30 years now, have owned a villa for 10 years and still have not grown tired of theme parks. I love ‘em! Therefore I feel very qualified to advise you on how to approach these parks.
First piece of advice – comfy shoes! Absolutely imperative, a small bottle of water, lots of rest breaks and a small paper back book to read if the queues at some rides are very long. A small back-pack is a good idea for each member of the family that can carry one.
If you wish to eat in any of the proper restaurants, you will need to book these as soon as you arrive as they get booked up fast. These are mainly in Epcot and Universal Studios.
The best time to go on the rides is early in the morning when they have just opened, just before they close or if you do not wish to see the parades at Disney, then that is also a good time as is the traditional lunch time – 12 – 2pm.
If you can manage to go out of season (avoiding Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year and school holidays – remember American school holidays start in June) you will probably not need the book. Most queues at these times are fairly short. Out of season you may want a light jacket for the evenings which can be placed in lockers at the entrances to the parks for use if needed. During November, December, January and February you may even need a very warm jacket for the evenings.
Park days can be very tiring as you are on your feet most of the day so do plan to take rest days in between park days or have a water park day to give your poor feet a rest or you will never survive the holiday.
Illuminations: Replections of Earth is a fireworks and laser light show at Epcot that can be seen from all around the lagoon in the World Showcase but canny experts set up camp at cafes such as the Mexico Cantina or the English Pub garden or the English Fish and Chip shop. These are the three best places to get a seat (unless you want to really splash out and book a table for dinner upstairs in the French restaurant where you can watch from their balcony)
You will need to be there by about 7. 30pm. The fireworks start at 9pm but you can use the time to rest and have something to eat and drink. You can of course just arrive at the lagoon at 9pm, but you will have to stand and the little ones may have trouble seeing.
Have a good trip and remember – you can’t do it all in one trip although I give it a good go)
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