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A Very Short Survey About The Price Of A Touringplans.com Subscription

by on November 21, 2016 8 Comments

take_survey_iconIf you have a spare minute, we would greatly appreciate your responses to this very short survey about the price of a touringplans.com subscription. Really, it has only four questions and will take less than two minutes. The survey is intended for current subscribers to Touringplans.com.

You can find the survey here.

Your responses are confidential and the results are for information purposes only.

 

Cabanas Introduced at the Magic Kingdom

by on November 21, 2016 32 Comments

Are you looking for a relaxing experience at the Magic Kingdom? Soon, Guests will be able to experience an enjoyable day by renting cabanas in Tomorrowland, located near Space Mountain. These cabanas can accommodate up to eight Guests and are available for a rental price of $649 per day.  This is a set price, no matter how many Guests take advantage of the Cabanas, so for the best value, it’s better to have eight total Guests in one Cabana.

 

©tjo19

©tjo19

 

Amenities in the Cabanas will include private, shaded seating (including a couch), snacks, a fruit basket, cold beverages, and reserved viewing for parades and fireworks. Cabanas also include a lockable storage trunk, charging stations, personalized Mickey ears, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, and insect repellent, a small refrigerator, delivery of ice cream novelties (once), and food delivery service (for a price).

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TBT: Six Reasons for Theme Park Fans to Give Thanks in 2014

by on November 21, 2016 1 Comment

Greetings! TouringPlans.com Blog Manager Brian here to welcome you to TBT: Throwback Thanksgiving week here on the blog. All this week we will be revisiting a few wonderful Thanksgiving-related posts from the past. Starting us off is this gem from 2014 highlighting the six things that Derek Burgan gave thanks for during that year.

Make sure you come back Thursday at 9:00am for this years items to give thanks for!

 

This week’s SATURDAY SIX takes a look at Six Reasons for Theme Park Fans to Give Thanks. 2014 was a great year to be a theme park fan, and for this Thanksgiving we are going to take a quick break from all the turkey, football games, and Black Friday planning, to count our blessings and thank the parks and resorts we love so much. So, for one day only, I ask that Disney and Universal fans put aside their differences and spend a moment appreciating all the wonderful things that we can share together, starting with…

# 6 – Disney and Universal Merchandise is Better than Ever

It wasn’t long ago, that the only merchandise people were buying at Universal were Thing 1 and Thing 2 shirts. Over at Disney, almost every single store, whether in the parks, hotels, or Downtown Disney, was selling the same generic”Disney Parks”stuff. A seismic shift started to occur in 2010, when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened, and blew the doors off everyone’s projections in the area of merchandise and Butterbeer. Guests were now walking out of Universal with house robes, wands and chocolate frogs in hand. This success was then repeated throughout both of their theme parks, with unique and exclusive items found everywhere you looked, from the EVAC action figure at Transformers gift shop, to the faux girl scout cookies in Despicable Me’s Super Silly Store, to my personal favorite – The Film Vault –  a whole new store focusing on retro merchandise.

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Jungle Cruise merchandise found at the Marketplace Co-op in Downtown Disney. (photo by Brandon Glover)

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Tips for Meeting Characters on a Disney Cruise

by on November 21, 2016 2 Comments

Disney Cruise Line - Mickey

I recently got back from my first Disney Cruise, and as a character fan, meeting characters was a top priority. I ended up meeting 22 different characters, with 57 different outfits, and a total of 70 actual meets on our 7 day Disney Fantasy cruise. Each cruise (even on the same ship and same time of year) will be different, but here are some tips on having as much character fun as I did.

Make the Navigator your new best friend. Each night, you’ll receive a Navigator for the next day, which has the daily schedule for many activities on your cruise. You’ll find the characters listed in a yellow box on one page, as well as on a tv guide looking chart on a separate page. I recommend using the yellow box to plan your character hunting, since sometimes, there are too many characters in a given time to list them on the chart. I also found the yellow box easier to read and glance at quickly. I folded the navigator page each day so that I would only see the character yellow box (tip: pick up extra Navigators at the Guest Services to keep as mementos from your trip.) Read the rest of this entry »

New Concept Art Revealed for Star Wars Land

by on November 19, 2016

Star Wars Land is going to be an amazing land, once it officially opens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland.

Today, at Destination D, Disney shared a peek at how beautiful the land will appear when it is lit up at night at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. As you can see, this is clearly going to be an incredibly immersive land.

©Disney

©Disney

 

In addition, it was also announced that Star Tours – The Adventures Continue will see a new mission added that ties into Star Wars: Episode 8. Walt Disney Imagineering and LucasFilm are currently working on the production of this new scene. The new scene will debut next year.

I can’t wait to share more Star Wars related news with you, as it gets released! Stay tuned to the blog for more!

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Pandora – The World of Avatar to Open at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Summer 2017

by on November 19, 2016 4 Comments

Who is ready to travel to Pandora? it was announced today that the lush world from the movie Avatar will open at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the Summer of 2017.

Guests will enter Pandora through a bridge found near the new table service restaurant, Tiffins. According to the backstory of the land, “the bridge was built during a time when a destructive company called the RDA came to Pandora. Now that they’re long gone, nature is breaking down evidence of their presence.”

Guests will enter Pandora into the Alpha Centauri Expeditions base camp. Alpha Centauri Expeditions, for those who don’t know, is the eco-tour group that is preparing Pandora for further exploration.

Pandora will feature two attractions. One is a boat ride that will take Guests into a visually stunning world where they will travel into a bioluminescent rainforest through a sacred river. The journey will end with an encounter with a Na’vi Shaman. The family friendly attraction will be called Na’vi River Journey.

Pandora Boat Ride

©Disney

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SATURDAY SIX: Six Reasons We LOVE the Walt Disney World SWAN and DOLPHIN

by on November 19, 2016 5 Comments

This week’s SATURDAY SIX takes a look at Six Reasons We LOVE the Walt Disney World SWAN and DOLPHIN. Disney has three classifications for their resorts: Value (including Pop Century and Art of Animation), Moderate (Caribbean Beach and Coronado Springs), and Deluxe (The Poly and The Contemporary). Three of the Deluxe resorts are not run by Disney, these include Shades of Green (owned and operated by the US Armed Forces) and the Swan and Dolphin. For over 25 years the Swan and Dolphin has been a part of the Starwood chain of resorts. While Starwood was bought by Marriott in September of this year, the hotels continue to be run under their respective brands (Swan being part of Westin, while the Dolphin part of Sheraton.)

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Walt Disney World Swan.

Both the Swan and Dolphin are considered Disney Deluxe Resorts. While neither hotel offers the Disney Magical Express to and from the airport, or participates in the Disney Dining Plan, guests do get the normal WDW on-site ammenities including Extra Magic Hours, Disney transportation, and early access to Fast Pass+. How do the Swan and Dolphin stack up compared to the other on-site resorts?  Well, today we are going to check out our favorite parts of these two incredible hotels, and let’s begin our list with…

# 6 –  Todd English’s bluezoo

One of the most underrated restaurants on Disney property is Todd English’s bluezoo located on the ground floor of the Dolphin. The bar area is visually stunning, and sets up the unique food and drink menu perfectly. Recently we did a tongue in cheek look at a Disney Value Resort Bar Crawl, but one thing that stood out at those bars – along with many others on Disney property – is a reliance on the standard Disney bar menu. Todd English’s bluezoo is the complete opposite of that. Whether you get a Burnt Orange that arrives on fire or a Swedish Fish with its infused foam, the drinks served at bluezoo are served with creativity and flair.

The dining room of bluezoo is deceptively large. While the menu is filled with some great items (especially if you’re a seafood fan,) what shocked us was the crispy Asian pork ribs. I didn’t think anyone would come close to touching the quality of Morimoto Asia’s Hoisin sticky spare ribs, but bluezoo’s are somehow better. While many probably wouldn’t think of bluezoo as the first choice to bring your kids, there is actually a part of the menu for kid’s appetizers, entrees, and desserts. The whimsicly named “desserted island” is among the most fun at WDW.

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Smoking Red Sangria. (photo by Brandon Glover)

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Burnt Orange – “herradura blanco infused with brûléed orange and muddled with agave nectar, grand marnier, and orange juice. topped with a flaming orange.” (photo by Brandon Glover)

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Crispy Asian pork ribs. (photo by  Brandon Glover)

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Desserted Island. (photo by Brandon Glover)

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D-Living Home Decor Store to Open at Disney Springs

by on November 18, 2016

©Disney

©Disney

If you’re anything like me, you’re always looking for great Disney home decor to buy and utilize around the house. Well, now, both me and you will have a new shop to make sure we visit when we head to  in Disney Springs.

D-Living will open on November 23 and it will feature a wide assortment of Disney-themed products that change throughout the seasons. In every room at this new store, Guests will discover a charming selection of Disney-inspired housewares, decor, and furnishings.

D-Living will be found adjacent to UNOde50 in Town Center.

All I can say is here’s another shop where I can say goodbye to all of my money!

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Starbright Holidays Drone Show To Begin November 20 at Disney Springs

by on November 18, 2016

Starbright Holidays Drone Show

©Disney

Did you see the recent news about the brand new drone show called Starbright Holidays that’s scheduled to take place this holiday season on the waterfront at Disney Springs? I know many were anxious to find out more information, such as when the show would debut and what its showtimes would be. Well, I can officially tell you that the show will start this Sunday, November 20. There will be nightly performances at both 7:0o p.m. and 8:30 p.m. until January 8. The show will take place over the water on the West Side of Disney Springs.

Starbright Holidays is a first of it’s kind light show collaboration with Intel and it features 300 hundred show drones, called Shooting Star drones. The Intel Shooting Star drone weigh less than a volleyball, and it features built in LED lights that can create more than four billion color combinations. These drones are choreographed in sync with each other and the show is set to a moving score of classic holiday music.

Starbright Holidays is joining the other great holiday experiences that will be found at Disney Springs this year, including a brand-new Christmas Tree Trail, seasonal entertainment, meet and greets opportunities with Santa, and more.

Shop at Disney Springs on Black Friday With These Great Offers

by on November 18, 2016

©Disney

©Disney

Next Friday is Black Friday, which means it’s time to get your shopping on! Of course, you knew with all the new shops at Disney Springs now, that they would want to take part in the Black Friday sale action. Guests who visit Disney Springs to do their shopping will be able to take advantage of special deals on both November 25 and November 26 beginning at 8:00 a.m., which is two hours earlier than normal! More than 60 Disney Springs stores will be offering discounts and special offers throughout these two days.

At Disney owned stores in Disney Springs, Guests can take advantage of great deals including:

  • Vera Bradley “Midnight with Mickey” hipster bags for $24.99 at Marketplace Co-Op.
  • Storm Trooper Action Figures for $14.99 at Star Wars Galactic Outpost
  • A holiday wreath with lights for $16.99 at Disney’s Days of Christmas

Curious about some of the other great offers? Check out this incredible list of deals!

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