Walt Disney World (FL)

The Disney Dream (Literally!)

by on December 14, 2014

streetshowIt is something that we have all probably done sometime in our Disney lives: have a Disney dream while you’re sleeping.

Sometimes, the dream is you in a strange hybrid Disney movie with real life mixed in. Sometimes it’s a dream derived from something at the Disney Parks. And in other ways it’s just a crazy mixed-up dream with a little Disney thrown in.

I had an incredibly vivid dream a couple of weeks ago that took place in Walt Disney World and featured some interesting new ideas that came out of the subconscious of my mind. But when I woke up and thought them through, I was thinking of ways those features in my dream could actually work in the parks.

I am going to tell you my Disney dream, and explain how some of those thoughts could be implemented in a Disney Park.

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Disney History: The Jungle Cruise

by on December 14, 2014

Copyright - Disney

Copyright – Disney

The Jungle Cruise is an iconic Disney attraction that promises danger, adventure, and a whole lot of laughs! Located in Adventureland at both Disneyland and Disney World, the Jungle Cruise was an opening day attraction at both parks and is still entertaining guests today with its witty Jungle Cruise Skippers, the backside of water, and the hilarious names for its steamboats, such as Senegal Sal and Congo Connie. But did you know that the original idea for the Jungle Cruise was very different than the attraction we know today? Did you also know that evidence for the original plan for the Jungle Cruise can be found in two other Disney World parks? Get your pencil and paper ready because for today’s lesson, we are going to brush up on some Disney History: The Jungle Cruise!

The Inspiration

When Disneyland was being built in the 1950s, Walt wanted to create an attraction that represented his True-Life Adventures series. It’s also been said that Walt was a fan of The African Queen, a 1951 film starring Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart, a mismatched pair who must sail a steamboat down the rivers of Africa. The two ideas morphed into a vision for an attraction where guests would sail down the exotic rivers of the world in a steamboat while observing live wildlife on either side. Naturally, this plan had to be modified when Disney learned that live animals would be difficult to contain, care for, and keep to script, so the solution was to install audio-animatronic animals instead. However, you can find a vintage poster for The African Queen at Hollywood Studios on Sunset Boulevard as it is a Hollywood classic, but also possibly a nod to Walt’s inspiration for the Jungle Cruise!

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25 Drinks of Christmas Countdown – Day 13: A Pint of Guinness at Raglan Road

by on December 13, 2014

The Christmas season is my absolute favorite time of the year. Growing up, one of the little things I loved most was getting an Advent calendar and counting down the days until Santa would be coming down the chimney. As I grew older, I had to leave Advent calendars in the rear view mirror,* but I still miss that daily countdown building anticipation to the big day. So, we’re going to start a virtual Advent calendar here at TouringPlans. For 2014, we are going to countdown our favorite drinks at Walt Disney World and the Universal Orlando Resort.

Criteria: Drinks can be alcoholic or nonalcoholic. Drinks can come from any venue on property as well as the Disney Cruise Line. Bonus points awarded for atmosphere where drink is served. Any drink with glow cubes is immediately disqualified. Ready? Let’s go!

DAY THIRTEEN: A Pint of Guinness at Raglan Road (Downtown Disney)

raglanroad_glover3

A pint of Guinness at Raglan Road. (photo by Brandon Glover)

 

There are many places on Disney property where you can get a pint of  Guinness, but only one place in our hearts, Raglan Road at Downtown Disney. Despite the large venue, Raglan Road does an amazing job at recreating an authentic Irish pub experience. The live entertainment is among the best on property and the menu consistently delivers with interesting and unique takes on traditional Irish standards. Come for the drinks, stay for the food, stay even longer for the off-the-charts atmosphere, Raglan Road is a true gem of Walt Disney World.

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Hollywood Studios AtMousePhere: The Music of Hollywood Boulevard

by on December 13, 2014

boulevard

Welcome to Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

Greetings, music and theme park enthusiasts! It’s time to switch our musical gears from the whimsical fantasy world of Magic Kingdom park to the music of the silver screen in Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

You might think initially that writing about the music of Hollywood Studios would be easy – it’s music from the movies! And in that point you would be correct…but only in certain parts of the park. Areas like Sunset Boulevard consist of music that’s more in tune with the style and architecture of the area, and don’t take soundtrack music based on that style and architecture.

In the area of the park that we’re covering today – namely, the entrance to Hollywood Studios, Hollywood Boulevard, and the area around The Great Movie Ride – we do discover some of the greatest music to come out of the cinema.

Some of the fantastic music that you’ll hear includes:

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Newsworthy Notes – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Edition

by on December 12, 2014

We all know that there is a massive amount of refurbishment work taking place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, preparing the theme park to become a full day park and to support the upcoming Avatarland, as well as Rivers of Light. A few updates have come to my attention, so I wanted to make sure to share them with you.

The first is that for those who like experiencing character dining at Tusker House, you’ll now have the option to do so at dinner. You see, beginning on March 8, the restaurant located in the Africa section of the park will introduce the Donald’s Safari Dinner. (For those who don’t know, breakfast and lunch were already character meals.) The dinner option will begin at 4:00 p.m. daily.

Tusker House

©Disney

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25 Drinks of Christmas Countdown – Day 12: Sugar Cane Mojito at Dawa Bar

by on December 12, 2014

The Christmas season is my absolute favorite time of the year. Growing up, one of the little things I loved most was getting an Advent calendar and counting down the days until Santa would be coming down the chimney. As I grew older, I had to leave Advent calendars in the rear view mirror,* but I still miss that daily countdown building anticipation to the big day. So, we’re going to start a virtual Advent calendar here at TouringPlans. For 2014, we are going to countdown our favorite drinks at Walt Disney World and the Universal Orlando Resort.

Criteria: Drinks can be alcoholic or nonalcoholic. Drinks can come from any venue on property as well as the Disney Cruise Line. Bonus points awarded for atmosphere where drink is served. Any drink with glow cubes is immediately disqualified. Ready? Let’s go!

DAY THIRTEEN: Sugar Cane Mojito at Dawa Bar (Animal Kingdom)

dawa3

Sugar Cane Mojito at Dawa Bar.

 

We absolutely love Animal Kingdom, and one of our favorite parts of the park is the recently expanded Harambe section. The Dawa Bar is our go-to area in Animal Kingdom for drinks, and is conveniently located near two other things we adore in Harambe, Festival of the Lion King, and the live Burudika band. The best bet at Dawa? An old classic: a Sugar Cane Mojito.

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Disney World Single Location Merchandise

by on December 12, 2014

When you’re shopping at Walt Disney World, there are many (many, many, many) merchandise items you’ll see repeatedly. Basic Mickey tees and princess dresses are sold in in dozens of locations throughout the theme parks, resort gift shops, at Downtown Disney, and sometimes even on DisneyStore.com. But you should be aware that there is a subset of Disney merchandise that you can only find in a single location. If you want to buy it, there’s only one place in the World to do so.

I’ve heard many tales of guests who saw the perfect souvenir, assumed they’d encounter it again to purchase later, only to find that it slipped through their fingers because they never returned to the one sales location during their visit.

Here’s a guide to the types of merchandise items that are typically found in only one location. If you want it, buy it when you see it, because you may not find it again.

RESORT LOGO MERCHANDISE

Some, but not all, of the Disney resort hotels sell merchandise with a unique resort logo. If you want a Beach Club tee shirt, you will only find this at the Beach Club, not anywhere else on property.

IMG_9000

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Updated Details on the Disney Vacation Club Expansion for Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

by on December 11, 2014

Today, Disney released some great new details, as well as renderings, of what both the Disney Vacation Club villas and bungalows will feature at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

First, we’ll take a look at the bungalows. There will be twenty bungalows available to Guests, and they will be able to sleep up to 8. They will feature a plunge pool and will have a spectacular Magic Kingdom view that is perfect for catching the evening fireworks.

©Disney

©Disney

 

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Daisy Lauren’s Best Week Ever: December 11, 2014

by on December 11, 2014

Hi, Everyone! Welcome to the Best Week Ever here at Walt Disney World! This week we’re visiting the Disney’s Art of Animation Resort and even checking into a Little Mermaid room. Then we’re stopping by Downtown Disney, Disney’s Hollywood StudiosDisney’s Fort Wilderness Campground, and finishing off at the Magic Kingdom. There is oh so much fun this week – so let’s get going! :)

The decorations at Art of Animation might surprise you! I know I wasn’t expecting a white Christmas tree with every color of the rainbow wrapped around it! But the design couldn’t be more fitting for this bright and happy hotel. Want to see more decorations and a Little Mermaid room? Be sure to click to read more below.

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The Comedy Warehouse Holiday Special Returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

by on December 10, 2014

©Disney

©Disney

Due to the busy holiday season, Disney brings out special entertainment offerings to entertain guests. One of the more popular offerings each year at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is the Comedy Warehouse Holiday Special.

The holiday-themed show will feature hilarious improvisational comedy (a la, the former Comedy Warehouse at Pleasure Island or the TV show, Whose Line Is It Anyway? It’s the same premise). The show is completely interactive, and sometimes guests will be asked to participate in the hijinks. During the show, the live performers will field suggestions from the crowd, obtaining help composing funny Christmas songs, putting their own spin on classic stories, and creating hilarious scenarios. The entire act will be festive and family-friendly. One of the best part is that due to the improvisational nature, the show is different each time. These performers are extremely witty, quick, and talented.

The show takes place in the Superstar Television Theater (the former home of the American Idol Experience) from December 20 to January 4. The show lasts 20 minutes and show times are scheduled at

The show is sure to be a rip-roaring time for the whole family!

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