While Orlando, Florida is more than theme parks and magical nights, it’s no secret that the Big 3 area amusement parks / resorts take center stage for people traveling to Florida for business and pleasure!
This Spring there are plenty of fun things to do around Orlando Florida. Of course, there are more theme parks than you can reasonably visit in one season; however, with a little planning you can experience what’s new, and what’s wild, in this growing central Florida hot spot.
First, let’s talk about the elephant, or shall I say “Dumbo”, in the room. Often referred to as “The Big Three, these entertainment and property brands could easily be called the heart of Orlando’s theme parks.
Walt Disney World Resort Properties
At more than 47 square miles, roughly the size of San Francisco, California, Walt Disney World Resort is like a city unto itself!
More than a theme park, the Orlando Disney location is an entertainment resort complex, complete with walking paths and various forms of transportation, including water taxis, a monorail, and Disney Skyliner, that can get you from one point to the next. There have been books written about how to plan your trip to Disney World, and here we will cover what’s new and how to save.
Walt Disney famously said of Orlando: “Here in Florida, we have something special we never enjoyed at Disneyland…the blessing of size. There’s enough land here to hold all the ideas and plans we can possibly imagine.”
At more than 47 square miles, roughly the size of San Francisco, California or Paris, France, it’s like a city unto itself! Within that space are 6 main properties and many experiences within the experience, for visitors to enjoy. Not all of these Orlando experiences require a paid ticket for entry which is perfect for those on a budget who still want to enjoy live entertainment and magical surroundings. This spring, here are some fun things to do around Orlando’s Walt Disney World:
4 Theme Parks:
- Magical Kingdom Park
- Epcot (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow)
- Disney’s Hollywood Studios
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, the largest animal-themed park in the world
2 Water Parks:
- Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, reopening March 19, 2023
- Blizzard Beach
Entertainment and Shopping Districts (no admission ticket required)
- Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort
- Disney’s Boardwalk, near EPCOT Resort area
- ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
- *The Tampa Bay Rays played their opening Spring Training game at the Sports Complex.
- Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course
- Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course
For events that require a park ticket, check here for Disney tickets. Prices vary , starting from $87.50/day, and Florida residents get discounts.
Spring Specials and New Attractions at Walt Disney World:
Let’s share a few fun and new things to do this spring at this Orlando vacation destination:
Magical Kingdom Park
- On April 4, 2023, TRON Lightcycle / Run, one of the fastest coasters at any Disney theme park, will open in Tomorrowland. You need to be at least 48 inches tall to speed across the world on this ride themed after the 1982 production of TRON. You’ll mount what looks like a motorcycle and speed through the rollercoaster course. Click here for a POV video of what the TRON ride is like.
- Many visitors familiar with the park are excited for the return of the “Happily Ever After” firework, light, and laser show, beginning April 3, 2023. Originally, the show was suspended during the world-wide health event, and then by Enchantment, the show which ran during Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary Celebration. Be sure to check the schedule to enjoy this 18-minute creative celebration of light and story.
Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival
From March 1 – July 5, 2023 garden lovers can enjoy impressive Disney-inspired topiaries, gardens, and delicious food from around the world. Now, before you dismiss paying to see topiaries, in true Disney fashion, these are not your everyday topiaries! These are beloved characters gone wild, like Buzz Lightyear, Donald and Daisy, Bambi and Friends, the Lion King crew, and more. The gardens will take you around the world and through time, from the prehistoric garden, to the idyllic gardens from Sheakespeare time, then to Italy, Morocco, Japan, China, Mexico and England, butterflies, bonsai, and bees…plus much more. For a separate fee, there are different garden-themed food selections.
Disney Springs Events
Be sure to check out the calendar of events to find some entertainment to enjoy, no admission fee needed.
Universal Orlando Resort
Want to figure out how to avoid becoming dinner for a TRex? Then Jurassic World: Escape is for you.
2 Theme Parks:
- Islands of Adventure, great for children and families. Harry Potter attractions live here!
- Universal Studios Florida
1 Water Park:
- Volcano Bay
Free Entertainment District:
Spring Specials and New Attractions at Universal Orlando Resort
Universal’s Mardi Gras: International Flavors of Carnival
Through April 16, 2023: Sample delicious Cajun and Creole dishes and enjoy some of the biggest names in music.
Now open – Escape Room experiences. Want to figure out how to avoid becoming dinner for a TRex? Then Jurassic World: Escape is for you. Have a thing for the past, the future, and DeLoreans? Then Back to the Future: OUTATIME is right up your alley. Test your skills at the Great Movie Escape, featuring interactive state-of-the-art missions that are inspired by blockbuster films, presented as only Universal Studios can do.
Universal Orlando Resort Ticket and Lodging Offers
Combine your hotel and theme park tickets for extra savings. Click the link for the details, there are deadlines for when to purchase the package, and when to take your Orlando vacation.
SeaWorld’s mission includes conservation. They say “We actively support efforts protecting our oceans and coral reefs, seeking sustainable food sources for park guests and our animals, as well as our ongoing animal rescues.”
Spring Specials and New Attractions at SeaWorld Orlando:
Seven Seas Food Festival
Through May 7, 2023: Culinary travelers are in for a treat! Global cuisine, local craft beers, and live music are the perfect combination any time. Now, add water and the fun of Sea World and you may have the perfect Spring getaway.
Pipeline: The Surf Coaster
Finally, opening this spring, the much anticipated roller coaster is joining the lineup of rides at SeaWorld Orlando. Inspired by the surfing culture, riders will strap on to a board (actually seats attached to a board!) and ride out of the gate, climb a horizontal launch that reaches 60 miles an hour. This may not be the big waves of Hawaii, but for some, it may feel like it.
Reduced Price on Annual Pass: Ends March 19, 2023
If you can act fast, and it makes sense to purchase an annual pass that is good through December 31, 2023 and includes blockout dates, annual passes and Fun Cards are reduced by as much as 20% for a limited time.
How to Save on Where to Stay Around Orlando FL This Spring
Here’s just a little example of what you may find for your Orlando travel plans:
Caribe Royale Orlando: Enjoy 15% off the best available rate on stays of two or more nights, plus a $25 daily dining credit when booking direct through April 21, for stays between Feb. 27 and May 31, 2023.
Floridays Resort Orlando: Get a sixth night free when booking five nights by May 31 for stays through May 31, 2023.
Avanti International Resort: Save 20% on the best available rate when booked by May 31 for stays through May 31, 2023.
Avanti Palms Resort: Save 25% on the standard rate when booked by May 31 for stays through May 31, 2023.
The Point Hotel & Suites: Save 25% when booking a minimum of two nights before May 31 for stays through May 31, 2023.