Disclaimer: I’m not being compensated by anyone for writing “Best New Attractions Coming to Walt Disney World” and all opinions and or thoughts expressed, are those of myself. I did pay a fee for the conference and travel to and from Florida. Also, please note that some of these beautiful photos were captured by the very talented Disney Social Media Moms Celebration photographer Alex.
I’m still in complete awe to have been invited on this magical experience and so grateful to the team for allowing my family to enjoy a trip together since my husband isn’t deployed. You feel like a princess while attending. From the time you arrive and check-in to the day you enter the parks, you’re part of the Disney magic. We entered parks before they opened, rode buses to undisclosed sections of the park, we stayed after hours and to see all of this from behind the scenes takes faith, trust and pixie dust to an entirely new level!
I’m going to write several posts over the next few weeks talking about the best new attractions coming to Walt Disney World and new attractions aboard Disney Cruise Line. It’s too much to put into one post. So, come along and sing the song and join the jamboree. M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E!
Day 1 – Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Our families were invited to Disney’s Animal Kingdom for a Welcome Reception hosted by GoGo squeeZ. We all enjoyed a Pandora themed dinner and dance party. As you may or may not know, Pandora – A World of Avatar is set to open on May 27th.
Check out all of the kids moves especially my friend Dawn’s daughter, visit her over at I Am a Mommy Nerd.
Opening May 27th, Pandora – The World of Avatar will allow guests to journey into a mystical world of bioluminescent rainforests, floating mountains and soaring Banshees. In collaboration with filmmaker James Cameron and Lightstorm Entertainment, Disney is bringing to life the fantasy world of Pandora, inspired by Cameron’s epic film AVATAR.
Guests will discover two main adventures in this breathtaking new land. Avatar Flight of Passage, sending guests flying above the jungles of Pandora on a Mountain Banshee. Na’vi River Journey is a family-friendly boat ride that sails down a sacred river hidden within a glowing rainforest for an unforgettable encounter with a Na’vi Shaman.
Hungry adventurers can recharge at Satu’li Canteen, the main dining location, or Pongu Pongu, a drink kiosk with a design as eclectic as its expat owner. Shoppers can stock up on Na’vi cultural items, toys, science kits and more at Windtraders.
After our welcome reception we went over to see the new attraction Rivers of Light. This DEBUTS today.
Rivers of Light is an all-new nighttime show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom which is so elaborate it nearly brings tears to your eyes as it takes you on this emotional journey with a mix of water, fire, nature and light all choreographed to an original musical score. It’s performed on select nights starting February 17th.
Continuing the park’s transformation from a day-into-nighttime experience, the amazing after-dark experience on the banks of Discovery River celebrates the majesty of nature and the connection between animals and humans in the world.
We enjoyed Mickey Ice Cream and snacks while watching this beautiful production.
Day 2 – Epcot
On March 1, Epcot celebrates 24 years of the Epcot International Flower & Garden festival and runs through May 29th. My husband enjoyed Epcot the most. You can sip your way through the new Outdoor Kitchens while checking out the elaborate and phenomenal topiaries designed after some of your most beloved Disney Characters.
The Norway Pavilion in celebration of the new Frozen Ever After attraction will have Anna and Elsa topiaries, while colorful gardens will lead the way to The Land Pavilion where guests can journey on Soarin’ Around the World which now takes guests to Sydney, Australia, the Great Wall of China and other destinations around the world.
We got to ride Soarin’ Around the World before the park even opened and I was in the front row. 🙂
That bubbly and fun lady to the left of me is Jana or you can call her Rey. Check out her blog at Merlot Mommy here. We both love Disney Bounding and in case you can’t tell, I’m Disney Bounding as Ariel from “The Little Mermaid”. That is a Sebastian Bracelet and I do have a seashell clutch and a doppleganger necklace. 🙂
Day 2 Continued at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Alamo Rent a Car hosted our Pizza Party for the families on Day 2 and it was amazing. Here are some of my favorite people that I met on this trip who are now my lifelong friends.
Cue the Star Wars music, as Star Wars has taken center stage over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios from new displays inside Star Wars Launch Bay with authentic replicas from “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” to the new AWR Troopers from “Rogue One” appearing in the daytime stage show “Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away.”
For the ultimate Star Wars fan comes the ultimate experience: the all-new Star Wars Guided Tour. Guests are treated to a seven-hour immersion with character greetings, themed dining, attraction experiences, insider’s tours, a dessert party and VIP viewing of Star Wars: a Galactic Spectacular. Offered for an additional fee, the tour is available Mondays and Saturdays and can be booked at DisneyWorld.com. Joyce and I had way too much fun here.
And coming later this year, Disney’s Hollywood Studios guests will be immersed in new scenes from “Star Wars: Episode VIII” while onboard the Star Tours – The Adventures Continue attraction.
Yes, I’m a Rebel with a cause and rocked my Marvel Guardians of the Galaxy shirt at the Star Wars party!!!
Individual Time in the Parks at Magic Kingdom Park
Starting May 12, Magic Kingdom Park guests will be treated to the most spectacular fireworks display in the park’s history with a brand new show called “Happily Ever After.”
Featuring more lasers, lights and projections than any Magic Kingdom Park show before it, “Happily Ever After” will take guests on an inspiring journey filled with heart and humor. Cinderella Castle itself will become part of the story, with dazzling projections bringing more than 25 heartfelt Disney stories to life on and around the iconic castle.
The 18-minute spectacle will feature moments from beloved Disney films such as “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin,” as well as modern blockbusters “Moana” and “Zootopia.”
“Happily Ever After” will be presented nightly. Show times vary based on park hours.
Individual Time Spent at Disney Springs
The culinary scene at Disney Springs just keeps getting better and better. From Paddlefish to Planet Hollywood Observatory, both are open now. After our cruise we ate at Planet Hollywood Observatory and it was absolutely amazing. I’m taking Rebecca and Grandma back there upon my next visit to Walt Disney World.
We chose to dine amongst the stars at Planet Hollywood Observatory, the newly reimagined restaurant serves up a new menu created by Chef Guy Fieri and we just love him. The craft cocktails are names gather inspiration from the planets and space travel. Movie memorabilia, video screens, contemporary music and themed merchandise complete the scene. I highly recommend eating here while in Disney Springs.
This is just some of the new and exciting things that are heading to Walt Disney World. Disney Springs has all of the shopping your heart could ever want. From World of Disney to Trends to Hanes where you can make your own shirt. They have Lily Pulitzer, Zara, Sperry, Dooney & Bourke and so much more. Harley Davidson and Rain Forest Cafe, there is nothing you cannot find or do while in Disney Springs.
What are you most excited about at Walt Disney World this year???
Follow along with #DisneySMMC as more posts are coming in the upcoming weeks.