Tag: Disney Hollywood Studios

Top 10 Holiday Must Do’s At Walt Disney World

August 21, 2014

There is always magic abound at Walt Disney World, but the Holidays bring about some pretty extra special experiences. Some of my favorite Disney memories took place this time of year. It is truly an enhanced vacation as well as holiday experience. In typical Disney fashion, there is something for everyone! Here are my Top 10 Holiday Must Do’s:

Hollywood Studios

10. During the holidays, there are beautiful Christmas Trees all over the property. You can easily make a day of it and make your own tour to view all the trees. They are usually themed based on the park or resort. For example, the tree at Hollywood Studios is film themed. The one at Animal Kingdom is Animal/Safari themed.   You should also check out the trees in the resort lobbies. My favorite is the one at the Wilderness Lodge, but every resort is adorned for the season.

9. The Jungle Cruise ride was transformed for the first time in 2013 into the Jingle Cruise. All of the boats and docks are decorated for the holidays and the snarky and sometimes silly jokes the drivers tell are also revamped with a holiday theme. I prefer to ride after dark when the boats are lit up with twinkle lights.

8. Gingerbread Artwork at the Resort lobbies is a feast for the senses during the holiday season. WDW pastry chefs work diligently to present what are true works of art. You will be in awe of the visual artistry but then there is the yummy smell of the gingerbread that fills the air. The Grand Floridian has a humongous gingerbread house that is so immense and intricate. The Boardwalk Resort has a Carousel made out of gingerbread and the Contemporary Resort has a Gingerbread Holiday Tree. All three have a shop where you can purchase a little taste of gingerbread heaven.

Jingle Cruise

7. The Christmas Day Parade at Magic Kingdom is certainly a special event. Many people are not aware the television taping of the parade is actually in early December. The floats are characters are dressed in lots of red and green and the finale is Santa and Mrs. Claus themselves!

6. Specialty Food & Drinks pop up all over WDW in November. I admit to being a Disney Foodie so I have to include this as its own “must do”. The wonderful flavors of gingerbread and pumpkin make it into cookies, ice cream, cupcakes and many other treats. I love to wash it down with Hot Spiced Cider, especially on a chilly night. Another favorite can be found at the French Pavilion at EPCOT. It is the Buche de Noel au Chocolat. You will be hooked once you try it too! But these tantalizing treats are seasonal so grab them while you can.

5. The Festival of the Seasons at Downtown Disney is pretty amazing! It is more than just a typical holiday shopping experience. DTD is decorated with breath taking decorations. There is holiday music everywhere including carolers, live performers, and dance parties. Your little ones can visit with Santa here as well. The Christmas shop is open year round but it is extra awesome this time of year!

4. The Very Merry Christmas Party is an extra special ticketed event at Magic Kingdom. For an extra fee, guests can attend the best holiday party you will ever be invited to. The party starts at 7PM and guest with a ticket will have special access to lots of merry fun! Select rides will be open.   Cinderella Castle is covered in “ice” and is truly a breathtaking sight. You can grab some free hot cocoa and cookies and even stand on Main Street while it snows. There are special characters and parades. It is truly a unique holiday experience.

The Festival of the Seasons

3. Another favorite is the World Showcase Storytellers. Each country tells holiday stories from their homeland. Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanza are all represented. You can meet Santa and Mrs. Claus at the American Pavilion. Mrs. Claus even sets up a bake shop at the American Adventure. You can get in the holiday spirit with these special stories and also learn about different cultures.

2. Illuminations is always a wonderful show but there is a holiday themed ending tagged on this time of year. This fireworks/light show is beautiful to watch and all about peace, love and harmony in the world. Also at EPCOT is the special Candlelight Processional.   Located at the American Gardens Theater, there is live music and a celebrity narrator that tells the story of Christmas. You can also couple this with a dinner package to get special guaranteed seating.

1. My favorite at Hollywood Studios. The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights is a holiday attraction is overwhelmingly gorgeous sight to behold. Set in the Backlot area of the park, the lights are all encompassing. There is music and choreographed “dancing” of the lights as they twinkle and sparkle all around you. It snows here as well.   This experience is included in your park admission. The experience will bring you yuletide cheer for sure!

There you have it…the top 10 things to do at Disney World during the holiday! Please contact me to learn more about planning your MAGICAL Disney vacation during the holidays or any time of year!

For other Top 10s To Do at Disney visit:

Top 10 must-dos at Disney World
Top 10 Walt Disney World Attractions For Toddlers – #3 is a MUST do!


Jennifer Robertson
Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
MickeyTravels, LLC
(888) 400-1845
Click here to join my facebook page


Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort

February 26, 2013

Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort was one of those hotels that I overlooked year after year.  It seemed bland and out of the way.  It has a convention center, so I assumed the place was crawling with business people who weren’t on vacation.  I pictured the dining hall filled with suits and briefcases.  I didn’t even want to think about work, let alone watch people networking and conducting business while I lay by the pool.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.  Coronado Springs is both a delightful and relaxing moderate resort.

Laguna Bar

The Location:

Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort is considered an Animal Kingdom area resort, although it is just around the corner from Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  It is also the closest resort to Blizzard Beach. It is generally quiet in and around this resort, which is refreshing.  There is also direct access to Rt. 429, which will lead you to tourist free shopping and dining (there is a $1.25 toll each way, but totally worth it!).

Blizzard Beach

Siestas Cantina Disney Coronado Springs Resort







Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort

The Rooms

The rooms in Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort are spacious and clean.  They’ve recently changed the decor to capture the earth tones seen around the    resort.  The beds are super comfy too!  There are lots of options in terms of bed size, accessibility, and view.   Beds range from Standard with 2 Queen beds to Executive Suite with 2 Queen beds and 1 King (bar, dining room, living room, separate bedrooms…the works!).  You can even stay in a wheelchair accessible room complete with roll-in shower.   All rooms come with FREE WiFi and a small refrigerator, which are both must haves when it comes to visiting Walt Disney World!  Privacy is always important when you’re staying in a hotel.  We have never had an issue of hearing noise from the abutting rooms, which is nice.

Disney Dining Plan

The Food

The Pepper Market has gone through several changes over the years.  It used to house several stations of overpriced Mexican dishes (Think $14 for a tortilla, 4 tiny chunks of chicken and cheese).  You would order your food at the station(s) of your choice, eat, then pay upon exit.   We were less than thrilled with our experience and vowed never to eat there again.  We weren’t alone.  Disney heard the cries of their displeased guests and overhauled the Pepper Market.  In 2011, they introduced the always popular buffet and never ending burrito bar.  A fan favorite, but short-lived.  Disney has now unveiled their A la Carte menu, which features standard staples and omelet options for breakfast  and nachos, burritos, fajitas, salads, pasta, and burgers for lunch and dinner.  If you are on the Disney Dining Plan, the Pepper Market counts as a Quick Service location.  Pepper Market hours:  Breakfast 7am-11am Lunch 11:30am-2pm Dinner 4:30pm-11pm.

The Mayan Grill is a great Dining Plan option (not Quick Service) during your stay at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort.  According to WDW, you’ll find ”such steakhouse selections as ribeye steak atop parmesan potatoes, breaded pork chops with mango chutney, sautéed beef tips, chicken breast with avocado salsa and slow-roasted prime rib. Children can delight in pan-seared salmon, beef tenderloin tips, chicken parmesan and more”.

Cafe Rix is a grab-and-go option.  There are breakfast sandwiches, burgers, pizzas, and even beer and wine.  Breakfast is served until 11am and Lunch and Dinner until midnight.   If you’re on the Disney Dining Plan, you may use a Quick Service meal here!

Disney Coronado Springs Resort

The Fun

For Romance:  Visit the Laguna Bar (lakeside) or Siestas Cantina (poolside) for adult beverages and appetizers.  There are hammocks surrounding the lake, so kick back, relax and enjoy the peace and quiet!  A stroll around the resort at dusk, will not only make room for a romantic dinner, it will give you and your family time to catch up on the day’s events! What’s a romantic night without fireworks?  You can catch a glimpse of the fireworks from Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  If you look just above the trees, you may be able to see them from certain areas of the resort.  You may also be able to see them from just outside your room depending on how high up you are.

For Kids:  Nothing beats the Dig Site, a large complex featuring Mayan ruins, a huge pool, water slide, and the largest hot tub on Disney property.  There are always events going on around the pool.  Kids can also visit the Iguana Arcade!  Folks may want to take advantage of the recreational rentals within the resort.  You can kayak, fish, pedal boat, bike, and play volleyball too!  Enjoy a nice campfire complete with storytelling and complimentary marshmallows for roasting.  There’s days worth of fun here without even having to leave your resort!

For Sunbathers:  The pool options are always important to me because when you live in the Northeast, it is far too cold to swim 3/4 of the year.  I want to soak up the sun and swim as much as I want.  I have to admit, I like me a quiet pool!  There are three quiet pools here.  They are gorgeous and indeed quiet…for the most part.  As I mentioned before, the Dig Site houses a humongous pool with stunning scenery and hot tubs.  It can be quite busy here, so if you’re looking for fun and excitement, you’ll want to swim at the Dig Site.

Bottom line:  Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort is our favorite moderate resort on property.  It is large enough that you still feel like you’re alone most of the time.  During some times of the year, you just might be!  The pools are fantastic and the hammocks are mighty comfortable.  It’s tempting to skip the parks and relax the day away.  You might want to stay an extra day to do just that! J

Contact me for more information about Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort and for ALL my FREE Disney vacation planning services!

Stephanie Madrigal
Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
MickeyTravels, LLC
(407) 403-0831

Making Magic One Vacation at a Time…

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...