There are so many wonderful things that I absolutely love about visiting the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL. Things are always changing and new things are always right around the corner keeping it a fresh and new experience each time. This is what keeps our family returning year after year [or month after month as the case may be].
We are fortunate enough to visit often and our goal is to try at least one new experience during each trip. Well, we’ve visited over 50 times in the last 4 years and we’ve always been able to enjoy something new each time!
I’m so excited to share some of the new things that are on the horizon for 2014! Take a peek!
1. THE SEVEN DWARFS MINE TRAIN
The lovable world of Sleepy, Doc, Grumpy, Bashful, Sneezy, Happy and Dopey comes to life in spring 2014 when the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train takes New Fantasyland guests on a rollicking, musical ride into the mine, “where a million diamonds shine.” Inspired by the 1937 Disney animated film classic, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” the fun starts as guests cross a stone bridge leading to the entrance of the attraction. Guests will walk through a beautiful forest with the Dwarfs’ cottage in the distance, and will be immersed into the endearing story of the radiant and kindhearted Snow White and her forest friends led by the lovable Dwarfs.
After passing through an interactive pre-show area with fun activities themed to mining, guests will proceed to the mine train. Just like the iconic movie, surprises are in store! The family-style coaster will feature first-of-its-kind ride vehicles mounted in cradle-like pivots that allow the vehicles to swing back and forth during the ride. Adding to the fun, the journey will be accompanied by beloved music from the film classic and there’s a cast of animated figures of Snow White, the Seven Dwarfs and playful forest critters. I’m so excited for this Attraction to make its debut that I can hardly stand it!
2. DISNEY FESTIVAL OF
New Fantasyland also inspires a new daytime parade, the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade, scheduled to march into Magic Kingdom Park in the spring of 2014. The Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade will bring the magical stories of New Fantasyland to Main Street, U.S.A. through fantastic and innovative parade floats, vibrant costumes and an original soundtrack that will feature beloved songs from favorite Disney films, plus a new parade theme song. There will be no shortage of fantasy, either, according to the float-makers. Ariel and friends will grace a larger-than-life music box showcasing a colorful musical party “Under the Sea” while Scottish dancers and a float shaped like an enormous bagpipe announce the arrival of Merida. Other floats celebrate Disney Princesses; Peter Pan and Wendy soar above a pirate galleon; Rapunzel and Flynn Rider appear on a longship in search of another “Best Day. Ever.”
3. DISNEY SPRINGS TRANSFORMATION
While Downtown Disney in 2014 continues its multi-year transformation into Disney Springs, there are exciting changes guests can experience now. Newly opened in Downtown Disney West Side: Fit2Run serves both recreational runners and athletes. In 2014, Starbucks will add two locations: a storefront at Downtown Disney West Side and a kiosk near World of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace. New retail stores from women’s accessories to electronics, sportswear to girl’s fashions, home design accents to salon products will open as the Marketplace Co-Op.
There’s plenty of valet and self-parking as the Disney Springs expansion continues. Disney Springs will be a unique and vibrant shopping/dining/entertainment destination to be set amid beautiful open-air promenades, meandering springs and waterfront charm. Anchored by a signature water tower and grand entry, Disney Springs will boast four interconnected outdoor neighborhoods and be home to everything from shopping boutiques to flagship stores to great new restaurants and entertainment venues. With a planned completion in 2016, Disney Springs expects to double the number of venues, to more than 150.
Read more: Pixie Dust Central: Showing My Disney Side
4. NEW runDisney RACES
runDisney is expanding two of its most popular race weekends in 2014. There will be a 10K race added to the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna and the Princess Half Marathon Weekend. The new 10K races mean there will also be new “challenges” – the Dopey Challenge during Marathon Weekend (running the 5K, 10K, half marathon and full marathon) and the Glass Slipper Challenge during Princess Weekend (5K, 10K and half marathon). Both of these new “challenges” come with a special new medal awarded to anyone who completes the challenge. I know all of you runners out there are excited about this fun news!
With all of these new, super fun experiences in the works, my family is not going to have a problem in keeping up our tradition of trying something new on each Disney trip!
What’s your favorite part about a Disney Parks vacation? If you’ve never been on one, what are you waiting for?
Jackie Gailey is a work-at-home mom of two kids (16 & 12), wife of 20+ years to the greatest husband and dad, and owner of Jackie’s Magical Moments, where she blogs about about experiences she has with her vacation-loving family. In the summer of 2010, Jackie and her family, moved across the country to Savannah, GA so they could live closer to all of the fun that the central Florida area has to offer. She recently relocated to Florida to be even closer! Jackie travels to the Orlando area at least once every month as work and school schedules allow. She makes it a point to try something new on every trip and it never gets old! Follow her on Twitter at @jjzmgailey.