Category Archives: Attractions

Coming This Summer – Magical New Experiences Will Debut at All Four Disneyworld Parks

An incredible lineup of new attractions and experiences will debut this summer across all four Walt Disney World theme parks and beyond.

  • A flurry of fireflies awakens the iconic Tree of Life with colorful animation, and the songs of Disney’s new hit film “The Jungle Book” come to life on Discovery River, just two of the many new experiences as Disney’s Animal Kingdom introduces nighttime hours for the first time in the park’s 18-year history.
  • “Frozen,” the top animated film of all time, comes to life for the first time in an enchanting, music-filled attraction in the Norway pavilion at Epcot.
  • Princesses Tiana and Rapunzel join a rousing show on the grandest stage of all in front of Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park.
  • An awe-inspiring new Star Wars fireworks and projection spectacular premieres at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
  • Disney Springs welcomes more top shopping destinations and celebrity chef restaurants in a glittering new setting.

Across its four theme parks, multiple resort hotels and diverse shopping and dining offerings, guests will find unforgettable experiences to share with family and friends, making every moment as magical as it can be.

Disney's Animal Kingdom | I-4 Exit Guide
The Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

For the first time in its 18-year history, Disney’s Animal Kingdom will debut new day-into-nighttime experiences that celebrate the magic of nature beginning Memorial Day Weekend.

  • The park’s iconic Tree of Life will awaken each night amid a lively celebration of Discovery Island music and dance. Through stunning visuals, animal spirits appear and enchanted fireflies reveal stories of wonder as the tree morphs to showcase the magic of nature.
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris transitions to a new nighttime adventure in the extended orange glow of a setting sun. For the first time, hyenas and African wild dogs join the safari trail.
  • Discovery River becomes the stage for music and pageantry in a limited-engagement show inspired by Disney’s hit live-action film The Jungle Book. The Jungle Book: Alive with Magic is a live show filled with music and special effects that celebrates the new film and the classic songs, now infused with an Indian influence.
  • Hungry adventurers can have lunch or dinner at the new Tiffins signature restaurant on Discovery Island Memorial Day Weekend. Guests seated in the restaurant’s travel-themed dining rooms or on the waterfront patio can sip libations and savor dishes featuring African, Asian and South American flavors.
  • Across the park, guests can experience wondrous new nighttime experiences and entertainment celebrating marvels in nature and enjoy long-time favorites such as Expedition Everest, DINOSAUR, Kali River Rapids and more – in a whole new light.
Epcot Flower and Garden Festival | I-4 Exit Guide
Epcot During the Flower and garden Festival


Anna, Elsa and other beloved characters from the blockbuster film, “Frozen,” will give the summer season a warm hug at Epcot beginning this June. Meanwhile “Turtle Talk with Crush” makes fun waves and Soarin takes guests to new heights.

  • Anna, Elsa and their Frozen friends will welcome guests aboard the new Frozen Ever After boat ride that sails into a “Frozen” world at the Norway Pavilion. Passengers on their way to Arendelle’s Winter in Summer Celebration for Queen Elsa visit the ice palace and hear beloved film tunes plus new lyrics by Oscar-winning “Let It Go” songwriters Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez.
  • Also at Norway Pavilion, Anna and Elsa will greet guests in the new Royal Sommerhus, modeled after a traditional Norwegian cabin.
  • In Future World, guests will celebrate the U.S. debut of the new Soarin’ Around the World attraction at The Land Pavilion June 17. Now with a third Epcot theater, plus new digital screens and projection systems, the expanded attraction takes guests on an exhilarating “flight” above spectacular global landscapes and man-made wonders.
  • Guests will also find new additions at “Turtle Talk with Crush” beginning in May with characters from Disney•Pixar film “Finding Dory”. When Crush the sea turtle swims up to the “Human Tank” at Epcot, he’ll be joined by Dory and some of her new friends that guests will get to know when “Finding Dory” swims into theaters on June 17, 2016.
Disneyworld's Magic Kingdom | I-4 Exit Guide
Main Steet at Disneyworld’s Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom

Classic Disney characters will join contemporary animated film stars this June in a new extravaganza on the grand Cinderella Castle stage, and Magic Kingdom guests can experience a new dining adventure.

  • For the first time, Tiana of “Princess and the Frog,” and Rapunzel of “Tangled,” co-star with Anna and Elsa of “Frozen,” and a host of favorite Disney characters in the new Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire show. Performed on the grandest stage in the kingdom, the star-studded tale of friendship presents Mickey Mouse and his troupe of Merry Makers – Minnie Mouse, Donald, Daisy and Goofy – who invite 10 new friends from different animated worlds to join the celebration. This “timeless fairytale” of a show combines grand dance, fireworks and stunts with memorable music, an original song and special effects.
  • Disney Parks will welcome Elena of Avalor, Disney’s first princess inspired by diverse Latin cultures. Elena of Avalor will appear at Walt Disney World Resort later this summer and at Disneyland Resort in the fall, following her television debut in a new animated series this summer on Disney Channel.
  • Next door to the legendary Jungle Cruise, guests can enjoy the bold flavors of “World Famous Jungle Cuisine” served by the wisecracking crew of the new Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen. It’s the first Disney full-service restaurant themed after a specific park attraction.
Disney's Hollywood Studios | I-4 Exit Guide
Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

In the galactic wake of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, new Star-Wars-themed experiences shift into light speed.

  • The next generation of Star Wars-themed fireworks shows, “Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular,” will premiere this June with new themed fireworks, lasers, special effects and video projections of iconic characters and scenes from the complete saga, all set to the unforgettable score of the film series.
  • The live stage show “Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away” debuted April 4, celebrating moments from the Star Wars saga with live vignettes featuring popular characters such as BB-8, Kylo Ren, Chewbacca, Darth Vader, and Darth Maul.
  • First Order Stormtroopers led by Captain Phasma march in formation from Star Wars Launch Bay to the park’s Center Stage, adding menace to the entertainment. Star Wars Launch Bay showcases large-scale artifacts and encounters with characters including Kylo Ren. The re-imagined Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple experience also features new characters. And at Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, guests buckle up for an enhanced high-speed journey with new Star Wars: The Force Awakens characters and a visit to Jakku.
Disney Springs - The Boathouse | I-4 Exit Guide
The Boathouse at the new Disney Springs

Disney Springs and Water Parks Make a Splash

Inspired by Florida’s waterfront towns and natural beauty, Disney Springs is a charming district filled with unique retailers and restaurants from award-winning chefs. Throughout the summer, new stores and restaurants will open as Disney Springs more than doubles the number of retail, dining and other venues for guests

  • As Disney Springs continues to expand and diversify its dining, shopping and entertainment, more exciting high-profile tenants are coming onboard, including Anthropologie, Under Armour, kate spade new york, Sephora and Lucky Brand, among others. Other new shops opening in 2016 include Zara, Tommy Bahama, Lilly Pulitzer, UNIQLO and PANDORA.
  • More than 30 new tenants will be coming to Disney Springs this summer, including retail shops and dining venues.
  • Home to world-class dining, Disney Springs is shaping up to be a culinary dream. With its chic style and Pan-Asian flavors, Morimoto Asia offers just a taste of what’s to come as more new eateries are gearing up to open in the coming year, including Tablas Frontera by Chef Rick Bayless; Homecoming – Florida Kitchen and Shine Bar by Chef Art Smith; STK Orlando, a modern steakhouse with the ambience of a sleek lounge; Sprinkles, the world’s first cupcake bakery; Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza, a modern-day “pizza joint” with artisanal pies; and the reimagined, Planet Hollywood Observatory with new outdoor terrace and live entertainment.
  • Celebrity Chef Rick Bayless and Chef Art Smith join master Chef Masaharu Morimoto in a growing collection of James Beard Award winning chefs at Disney Springs.
  • At Cirque du Soleil’s “La Nouba,” the new B-Boys hip-hop, breakdancing threesome showcase a rare mix of rhythm, strength and “how-did-they-do-that?” moves. As part of the show’s ongoing evolution, the masterful Aerial Bamboo act joins recent additions of madcap clowns and a breathtaking rolla bolla juggling act.

Meanwhile, Disney water parks will ramp up with playful spirits and summer fun faster than Olaf can beg for warm hugs.

  • At Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park, Olaf from Disney’s animated hit “Frozen,” will be living his “In Summer” dream as he and Kristoff host The “Frozen” Games of friendly, fun competitions.
  • Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park castaways can splash down on a sandy summer beach with a cold ale and savory snack after a wild slide on Crush ‘n’ Gusher water coaster.

Disney guests will have a magical summer experience wherever they play, dine, relax or celebrate at Walt Disney World theme parks, entertainment venues and resort hotels.

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Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival Now Underway

The 23rd Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival is now underway at Walt Disney World.

The event is bursting with fresh, farm-to-table flavors, brilliant blooms, interactive playgrounds and rocking entertainment.

Running from March 2 to May 30, 2016, this years highlights include:

  • Outdoor Kitchens offering delectable small plates and flavorful non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages
  • A brand new Harmony Gardens Musical Playground for kids featuring state-of-the-art net climbers
  • More than 70 world-renowned Disney-themed topiaries – New characters are waiting to be found
  • Vibrant gardens, flower towers and wildlife habitats
  • A new Fun Fresh Weekend focusing on family togetherness
    Inspirational exhibits, seminars and how-to demonstrations
  • Garden Rocks™ Outdoor Concert Series featuring throwback beats from fan-favorite bands – New acts added this year

Plus—with so much to see and do, you can return to the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival again and again… and uncover something new every time!

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Legoland Florida Resort to Expand With New Attractions and Accommodations

LEGOLAND Florida Resort announced an unprecedented slate of projects that will deliver additional on-site accommodations, an immersive new theme park land with a cutting-edge, interactive attraction, the first-ever expansion of its water park, a new, action-packed “4D” theatrical attraction and an all-new summertime event filled with fireworks and special entertainment, giving guests even more reasons to play – and stay.

NEW! LEGOLAND Beach Retreat – opening mid-2017
This whimsically themed vacation resort combines the fun of surf, sand and sun with the creativity of LEGO® bricks on a picturesque site next to Lake Dexter, adjacent to the theme park. Distinguished by a colorful LEGO lighthouse, the village-style, lakefront resort will feature 83 single-story duplex units, offering 166 separate accommodations that sleep up to five.

Designed with the same combination of imagination and kid-centric detail that made the 10-month-old LEGOLAND Hotel an immediate hit, the all-new LEGOLAND Beach Retreat offers a great way for larger families and friends to vacation together. Amenities will include a themed pool, a sandy play area, a buffet-style restaurant and complimentary transportation to and from the theme park.

NEW! LEGO NINJAGO World – opening early 2017
Inspired by the popular series of LEGO building sets and the long-running TV show “LEGO NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu,” this all-new, fully immersive theme park land invites guests to step into a magical, martial arts kingdom where they’ll experience a first-of-its-kind attraction that blends eye-popping, 3D computer animation, “4D” atmospheric effects and groundbreaking technology by Montreal-based Triotech.

On LEGO NINJAGO The Ride, up to four guests per vehicle blast animated fireballs, lightning, shockwaves and ice using nothing more than their hands as they travel through dojos mastering their skills before teaming up to defeat a powerful villain. Riders collect points and scores are displayed when each quest is complete. The thrilling attraction is the epicenter of a new area featuring multiple hands-on, interactive experiences that will hone kids’ physical skills like NINJAGO heroes Kai, Jay, Cole, Zane and Nya, before their ultimate test on LEGO NINJAGO The Ride.

NEW! Creative Cove featuring Build-A-Boat – now open
A fun expansion area at LEGOLAND Water Park adds a brand-new attraction, Build-A-Boat, where kids can create and race LEGO watercraft through fast-flowing rivers alongside cheering crowds in a setting inspired by the popular LEGO City Coast Guard sets. Nearby, the existing Imagination Station lets little ones build and play with colorful DUPLO® bricks in a water-filled activity center. Additional dining offerings, increased seating capacity and complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the entire water park round out the all-new offerings for 2016.

NEW! “LEGO NEXO KNIGHTS 4D: The Book of Creativity” – opening May 26, 2016
Set in the futuristic Kingdom of Knighton, this all-new theatrical attraction pits five young knights against the evil Jestro and his sidekick, the Book of Monsters, in a battle for control of a rare book of magic that gives its owner tremendous power. Based on the new LEGO series of building sets and the just-launched TV show, the 12½-minute, immersive experience combines 3D computer animation with “4D,” real-world effects that bring the high-tech action bursting off the screen and into the audience.

Elsewhere in the theme park, kids will discover six exclusive shields that unlock unique NEXO Powers within the LEGO NEXO KNIGHTS: Merlok 2.0 mobile app for iOS and Android devices.

NEW! LEGOLAND Night Lights – Summer 2016
The resort will debut its latest all-new event in June, a celebration of summertime fun featuring extended park hours, meet-and-greet opportunities with favorite LEGO characters, exclusive opportunities to build alongside LEGO Master Model Builders and a spectacular, brick-tacular NINJAGO fireworks display that will light the night above Lake Eloise with brilliant colors and triumphant music. Held exclusively at LEGOLAND Florida Resort, the party is included with park admission and will take place every Saturday and Sunday from June 18 to July 31.

The exciting new projects represent the largest period of growth in the nearly 4½-year history of LEGOLAND Florida Resort, a rapid trajectory of expansions that has included LEGOLAND Water Park (May 2012), LEGO STAR WARS™ Miniland Model Display (November 2012), LEGO World of Chima™ (July 2013), DUPLO Valley (May 2014), LEGOLAND Hotel (May 2015), Heartlake City (June 2015), and phased restorations of the historic Cypress Gardens botanical wonderland, which recently celebrated its 80th anniversary.

For more I-4 information, visit, the Internet’s largest and most complete website devoted to Interstate 4. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit from Tampa to Daytona!

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New Blockbuster Nighttime Spectacular This Summer at Walt Disney World Resort

Following the extraordinary popularity of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Walt Disney World Resort is unveiling even more Star Wars-themed entertainment at Disney’s Hollywood Studios starting this spring – including one of the most elaborate fireworks and projection shows in the park’s history.

Here are details on these latest entertainment features coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios this spring and summer:


Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away: This new live, stage show celebrates iconic moments from the Star Wars saga with live vignettes featuring popular Star Wars characters, such as Kylo Ren, Chewbacca, Darth Vader and Darth Maul. The show will take place multiple times each day at the Center Stage area near The Great Movie Ride.
Stormtroopers march: At various times each day, the menacing Captain Phasma will lead a squad of First Order stormtroopers as they march in formation from Star Wars Launch Bay to the Center Stage area in an intimidating demonstration of the First Order’s indomitable strength.


Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular: As the next generation of the current Star Wars-inspired fireworks show, this blockbuster nightly show, unprecedented in Disney’s Hollywood Studios history, will light up the sky with Star Wars-themed fireworks, lasers, light projections and other special effects combined with Star Wars-themed music and iconic characters and scenes from throughout the saga.

Through these state-of-the-art special effects that project onto the nearby Chinese Theatre and other surrounding buildings, guests will gaze at the twin suns of Tatooine, push through a field of battle droids, navigate through an asteroid field, soar down the trench of the Death Star and deliver the final blow to destroy Starkiller Base. The show, which will unfold through a series of acts, will be punctuated by a tower of fire as well as powerful spotlight beams that create lightsabers in the sky.


And more Star Wars experiences are on the way with the upcoming Star Wars-themed lands planned for Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort in California.

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Zip Line and Aerial Park Coming to Tampa Bay

Clearwater-based Empower Adventures Tampa Bay has approvals to build a zip line and aerial adventure park on Mobbly Bayou Wilderness Preserve, which will cross waterways and provide open water views of Tampa Bay. Scheduled to open in May 2016, the addition of EATB to Tampa Bay bolsters Oldsmar’s reputation as one of the regions most progressive sports cities with an internationally known BMX park.

The park will feature a 55-foot-tall start tower, five zip lines of varying lengths, a 100-foot suspension bridge as well as other adventure park elements such as log bridges, catwalk bridges, steps, tires, and poles. Professional guides will lead groups through the course, which will take approximately an hour and a half to complete and will run at varying times during the day. Work on the park will start this month and take approximately 8-12 weeks to complete with an anticipated mid-May Grand Opening.

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Introducing The 2016 Florida State Fair

The 112th Florida State Fair is scheduled for February 4 – 15 at the Florida State Fairgrounds located at I-4 and US Hwy 301 in Tampa. This year’s theme, “So Much More to Explore,” reminds everyone that there are seemingly endless activities to discover and enjoy including rides, food, exhibits, entertainment, animals, attractions and shopping. The Florida State Fair offers non-stop fun AND an excellent value with more than 112 free things to do and always free parking.

This year, music lovers will tap their toes to headliner concerts by 1960s sensation Gary Puckett; up-and-coming country singer Colt Ford; jazz and blues artist Robert Cray; and Dove Award-winning group Tenth Avenue North. Other concerts include the harmonies of Matt’s Family Jam and Indie artist Aranda. Lazy Bonez, an ‘80s tribute band, is back for their second Florida State Fair, along with Beatlemania Live. The always-popular Elvis Extravaganza and Fair favorite Dennis Lee will be back to please fans. Some of the concerts have a new home on the Coca Cola Headline Music Stage located in the Equestrian Center. Other artists will perform on the Tampa Bay Times or Sleep Number Stages.

Book Your Perfect Room in Tampa!

One of the most popular Fair concerts, Country Gold, returns to the Entertainment Hall on Feb. 9 and 10. Tickets for this concert are always a sell-out and can be purchased online at Prices are $20 for reserved floor seating and $10 for general admission.

Family fun is at its finest at the Florida State Fair with comedy shows, stunt divers, amazing animals and livestock, as well as the Mildred W. and Doyle E. Carlton Jr. Cracker Country and other exciting entertainment throughout the 12 days of the Fair.

It wouldn’t be the Florida State Fair without outrageously delicious food and exciting rides. This year, Fairgoers once again will vote for the People’s Choice Burger from a selection of new and returning burger favorites. Daredevils won’t want to miss a ride on the Super Cyclone Roller Coaster, just one of the new attractions on the Florida State Fair Midway.

“There is truly something for everyone at the Florida State Fair,” said Charles C. Pesano, Executive Director of the Florida State Fair Authority. “This is a great year to explore all there is to offer, while having fun on a budget.”

For more I-4 information, visit, the Internet’s largest and most complete website devoted to Interstate 4. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit from Tampa to Daytona!

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TopGolf Coming to Orlando

Topgolf Entertainment Group officially unveiled Orlando as its third location planned in Florida. Topgolf® will begin construction on the 65,000-square-foot venue in February; it is expected to open to the public in early 2017.

Topgolf Orlando will be located at Convention Way and Universal Boulevard, right across the street from the Orange County Convention Center.

Topgolf is the only entertainment center of its kind, offering competitive golfing games for all ages and skill levels and advanced technology to track the accuracy and distance of players’ shots. Those who just want to relax can enjoy the upscale, laid-back ambiance that boasts more than 230 high-definition flat-screen TVs and an extensive food and beverage menu.

The new three-level location will include up to 3,000 square feet of private event space and 102 climate-controlled hitting bays that can host up to six players at one time. Shor estimates that Topgolf Orlando will serve upward of 450,000 visitors in its first year of operation. Nearly half of all Topgolf guests describe themselves as “non-golfers.”

For more I-4 information, visit, the Internet’s largest and most complete website devoted to Interstate 4. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit from Tampa to Daytona!

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New Year Brings New Values at Four Florida Parks

Visitors and Florida residents can now choose from a variety of new admission products for the Busch Gardens and SeaWorld family of parks that provide more value and flexibility.

For tourists visiting Florida, the NEW “Choose Your Adventure” ticket option simplifies vacation planning so guests can enjoy multiple visits to four of the Sunshine State’s most popular theme parks. The program allows guests to customize their ideal itinerary AND receive substantial savings for each additional park or visit — the more they visit, the more they save.

Guests can create their own favorite theme park adventure across the following four parks: Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, SeaWorld Orlando, Adventure Island Tampa Bay and Aquatica Orlando.

For example, when tickets are purchased in advance, online, special prices are as low as:

  • One visit to any park – $79
  • Two visits to any of the parks – $99
  • Three visits to any of the parks – $109
  • For the ultimate adventure deal — the new Length-of-Stay ticket provides 14 consecutive days of unlimited adventure to all four of the popular Florida theme parks, along with free parking at each, for one low price of $139.


There also are new values for Florida residents who are looking to visit all year long, with incentives for purchasing early in the year.

  • Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Adventure Island “BOGO Fun Card”: Now through February 29, guests who buy a Fun Card to Busch Gardens also will receive a FREE Fun Card to Adventure Island.
  • SeaWorld Orlando “Preschool Card”: For a limited time, SeaWorld Orlando will offer kids ages five and younger a FREE Preschool Card valid for unlimited admission through December 31, 2016. Cards must be registered online and redeemed in the park by May 27, 2016.
  • Annual Pass: The best value at SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is the Annual Pass with unlimited admission all year, free parking, no blockoutdates and special benefits. NEW this year for Pass Members are enhanced Instant Rewards – a 12-month calendar of exclusive offerings each month such as discounts, ticket offers and free gifts. With a new reward each month, there is incentive to purchase early and enjoy the full year of offers. With EZ Pay, Annual Passes start at just $14 per month for one park, and $18 per month for both parks.

To learn more about the new ticket offers visit or and join the conversation with @BuschGardens, @SeaWorld onFacebook, Twitter and Instagram.

For more I-4 information, visit, the Internet’s largest and most complete website devoted to Interstate 4. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit from Tampa to Daytona!

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Busch Gardens Tampa Recognized As One Of The World’s Top Amusement Parks

Busch Gardens® Tampa was recently recognized as a winner in the 2015 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice™ awards and in USA TODAY’s 10Best Readers’ Choice awards.

TripAdvisor recognized Busch Gardens as one of the Top Amusement Parks in the World. The leading travel site highlights the World’s top attractions, based on the quantity and quality of reviews and ratings for amusement parks worldwide gathered over a 12-month period.

Adding to the excitement, Busch Gardens’ Iceploration show was a winner in the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice travel award contest for Best Amusement Park Entertainment. Nominees are chosen by a panel of relevant experts, which include a combination of editors from USA TODAY and, relevant expert contributors and sources for both these media and other Gannett properties. Voters are then given four weeks to vote for their candidate of choice.

Busch Gardens is the ultimate family adventure, combining world-class thrill rides, live entertainment and more than 12,000 animals. Venture across the Serengeti Plain® and race like a cheetah aboard Florida’s first triple-launch coaster Cheetah Hunt®. Plus, enjoy the fully-remodeled Pantopia® with shopping, dining, live entertainment and North America’s tallest freestanding drop tower, Falcon’s Fury®.

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Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Announces New Lands, Entertainment and Experiences

Disney announced a line-up of new attractions and entertainment coming to its theme parks around the world during the D23 EXPO 2015 in Anaheim, California.

Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek gave 7,500 lucky fans a behind-the-scenes look at what’s to come.  He was joined by Imagineers working on these projects as well as legendary filmmakers James Cameron and Jon Landau who shared new details about Pandora – The World of AVATAR including the names of the land and E-ticket attraction – AVATAR Flight of Passage.  Fans also got a chance to see Marvel legend Stan Lee in a cameo appearance where he posed as an unsuspecting fan during Iron Man’s dramatic entrance.

Among the many announcements Chapek shared were new and enhanced Star Wars experiences coming later this year to theFlorida and California theme parks, plans for a new Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and more details on Pandora—The World of AVATAR, which is already under construction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.  Chapek also shared that Soarin’ Around the World will make its U.S. film debut at Epcot and Disney California Adventure taking guests to new places around the world.  Additionally, fans got a preview of exclusive video of the first Marvel attraction planned for Disney parks, coming to Hong Kong Disneyland in 2016.

“From Disneyland’s 60th anniversary celebration to the anticipation of Shanghai Disney Resort, we’re in the midst of unprecedented growth and expansion around the globe,” said Chapek. “With these new announcements, we continue our legacy in creating innovative attractions, worldwide entertainment, and magical lands that take our guests into the worlds of stories they love.”

In addition to these announcements, Chapek talked about the exciting news announced earlier in the day by Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company Bob Iger for plans to bring Star Wars-themed lands to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando and Disneyland park in Anaheim.  Each 14-acre land will transport guests to a never-before-seen planet with two signature attractions, including a customized secret mission on the Millennium Falcon and an epic Star Wars adventure that puts guests in the middle of a climactic battle.

Details on each of the projects include:

Star Wars Enhancements & New Experiences
From a new Star Tours adventure to Star Wars Launch Bay, from a new Jedi Training Academy to “Season of the Force,” soon guests will be part of both new and enhanced experiences at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort.

  • Star Tours – The Adventures Continue – Later this year, Star Tours will include a new adventure featuring locations and characters from the upcoming film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, giving guests a new adventure in the Star Wars galaxy.
  • Star Wars Launch Bay – This interactive experience will take guests into the upcoming film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, with special exhibits and peeks behind-the-scenes, including opportunities to visit with new and favorite Star Wars characters, special merchandise and food offerings.  Star Wars Launch Bay will be located in the Animation Courtyard at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and in Tomorrowland at Disneyland park.  Also at Disneyland park, Star Wars Launch Bay will share the space with the reimagined Super Hero HQ, featuring opportunities to meet and take photos with super heroes like Captain America and Thor, as well as experience the returning Iron Man Tech Presented by Stark Industries.  Both experiences will be available for guests later this year.
  • Jedi Training Academy — A favorite of younger fans is reimagined with a new experience that includes new characters and a new villain to battle from the popular Disney XD series “Star Wars Rebels.”
  • Season of the Force – This new seasonal event, beginning early 2016, brings new experiences to both coasts.  In Tomorrowland at Disneyland park, guests will explore the Star Wars galaxy with special entertainment throughout the land, themed food locations and more. Guests also will be thrilled to climb aboard Hyperspace Mountain, a reimagining of the classic Space Mountain attraction, in which guests will join an X-wing Starfighter battle. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, guests will close out weekend nights with a new fireworks spectacular set to the iconic score of the Star Wars movies.

Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida
The reimagining of Disney’s Hollywood Studios will take guests to infinity and beyond, allowing them to step into the worlds of their favorite films, starting with Toy Story Land.  This new 11-acre land will transport guests into the adventurous outdoors of Andy’s backyard.  Guests will think they’ve been shrunk to the size of Woody and Buzz as they are surrounded by oversized toys that Andy has assembled using his vivid imagination.  Using toys like building blocks, plastic buckets and shovels, and game board pieces, Andy has designed the perfect setting for this land, which will include two new attractions for any Disney park and one expanded favorite.

  • Family-friendly roller coaster – All on the back of Slinky Dog, this coaster will zip and zoom, plunge and coast as it takes guests on a fun, toy-filled adventure throughout the new land.
  • Alien saucers attraction – The famous little green aliens from the movie will take guests around for a spin in their very own flying saucers.  The music, lighting and sound effects add to the flurry of action, while “The Claw” looms over.
  • Toy Story Mania! – Guests glide into the Toy Story Midway Games Play Set  and take aim at 3D objects in a variety of fast-paced games, with an expansion that adds a third track to this popular attraction.

After Dark at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Pandora – The World of AVATAR  

As part of the largest expansion in the park’s history, Disney’s Animal Kingdom will immerse guests into the world of Pandora, and the entire park will transform after dark with new nighttime entertainment experiences, offering guests longer days than ever before to experience this one-of-a-kind theme park.

  • “Rivers of Light” – Expected to open next spring, “Rivers of Light” will be an innovative experience unlike anything ever seen in a Disney park, combining live music, floating lanterns, water screens and swirling animal imagery. “Rivers of Light” will magically come to life on the natural stage of Discovery River, delighting guests and truly capping off a full day of adventures at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris – This popular attraction will be extended for a new nighttime adventure next spring, where guests will travel through the African savanna amid the magically extended orange glow of the setting sun and discover two species new to the attraction: African wild dogs and hyenas.
  • Pandora – The World of AVATAR – Disney’s Animal Kingdom guests will journey into the magnificent world of Pandora at this new AVATAR-themed land – a world that includes floating mountains, a bioluminescent forest and the winged creatures known as Banshees, giving guests a transformational experience they will never forget.
    • AVATAR Flight of Passage – This E-ticket attraction, the centerpiece of Pandora, allows guests to soar on a Banshee over a vast alien world. The spectacular flying experience will give guests a birds-eye view of the beauty and grandeur of the world of Pandora on an aerial rite of passage.

Soarin’ Around the World in Florida and California
Next year, guests at Epcot in Florida and Disney California Adventure in California will journey to far-flung lands and fly above some of the world’s most unique natural landscapes and man-made wonders when the new Soarin’ Around the World makes its U.S. debut.

Iron Man Unveiled for Hong Kong Disneyland
Iron Man landed at D23 EXPO today for a special appearance, and soon Hong Kong Disneyland guests will have the opportunity to meet and take photos with the Super Hero himself. Set to open in 2016, Iron Man Experience will be the first Marvel attraction at any Disney park, taking guests on an epic adventure over the streets and in the sky above Hong Kong.  The adventure will begin at the new Stark Expo where guests board the Iron Wing to take flight and battle Hydra alongside fan-favorite Avenger, Iron Man.

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