Did you know that Disney World is filled with secret little gems that most first-time visitors miss? In fact, some people go dozens of times and never discover these hidden Disney World treasures at all! Don’t worry, though, we’re going to make sure you get every last bit of magic from your Disney vacation! Read on to find out where to find these secrets, plus check out a few must-know tips for planning your Disney vacation!
We all know that Disney World is known as “The Happiest Place on Earth.” However, planning a trip to Disney World can be rather overwhelming at times, because there is so much to see and do there. The good news- here are some hidden treasures, that are often out of sight or overlooked, at Disney World.
How to Find the Hidden Disney World Treasures
1. Africa- In the outdoor eating area, in back of the Tusker House Restaurant, you can hear various kitchen noises, like clanging dishes.
2. DinoLand U.S.A.- In the Boneyard, locate the Xylobone (behind the Jeep, on the right side) and you can hear dinosaur roaring music.
3. Discovery Island- At the end of the show- It’s Tough to Be a Bug- if you look at the ceiling, you can see a swarm of bugs flying towards the exit.
4. Pandora- The World of Avatar- Near the entrance, look for the Flaska Reclinata, an interactive plant.
5. Spaceship Earth- at night, if you take a right after Spaceship Earth, you will see the sidewalks twinkle.
6. Canada- The Hotel du Canada features 5 stories of windows to make it look taller. However, it is really only 3 stories high.
7. China- The Temple of Heaven is acoustically perfect. If you stand in the center of the temple and you say something, your voice will echo back to you.
8. Japan- The Japanese Pagoda, located at the courtyard entrance, is 5 stories high. Each story represents one of the 5 elements of Japanese Buddhism: Earth, water, fire, wind and sky.
9. Morocco- On the walls of the Morocco Pavilion, you will see an array of mosaic tile artwork. Each mosaic features one tile that has a flaw in it. The reason for this is that Moroccan people worship Allah and they believe that he is the only one that can create perfection.
10. United States- Along the front wall of the Pavilion, there are some paintings. One of them opens up to reveal an elevator.
11. Animation Courtyard- The gallery exhibit- Walt Disney Presents- focuses on the life of Walt Disney and the history of the Walt Disney Company. One of the artifacts is Walt Disney’s 2nd grade school desk. If you look closely, you’ll see his initials- W.D.- carved in the desk.
12. Echo Lake- While you’re standing in line for the live-amusement show- Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular- you’ll notice a sign that reads- “Warning: Do Not Pull Rope.” If you pull the rope, you’ll hear a man’s voice from the bottom of a well.
13. Sunset Boulevard- At the end of Sunset Boulevard is a little-known counter-service ice cream shop- Hollywood Scoops. They feature ice cream in an array of flavors with a variety of toppings.
14. Fantasyland- If you are one of the first visitors to arrive at Tinker Bell’s Fairy Treasures, in the morning, you may have the opportunity to wake up Tinker Bell from her sleep.
15. Frontierland- At the end of the Laughing Place Scene, on Splash Mountain, you’ll see a gopher come down from the ceiling. Many people think the gopher is sneezing, but he’s actually saying- “FSU”- Florida State University.
16. Tomorrowland- At the Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor, you can text in some of your favorite monster jokes. If your joke makes the Monsters, Inc. group laugh, it’ll be used during the show.
Now that you know where to look for all these magical hidden treasures of Disney World, let’s talk a few planning tips to help you get the most out of your vacation!
Tips to Plan the Perfect Disney Vacation
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Whether you’re a first-time Disney World visitor or a seasoned veteran, it is important that you plan and prepare for your trip. Planning out your Disney World vacation will help to ensure you get the most out of your vacation time. Here are some tips for planning a stress-free (or at least low-stress) Disney World getaway.
1. Decide on the time of year you want to visit- In 2016, Walt Disney World had 53,727,000 visitors. That’s a lot of people, so deciding on the best time of year to visit is important. When it comes to crowds, Disney’s least crowded months tend to be January, February, September. As far as weather, months with the lowest temperatures (71-79 degrees for an average high) are January, February, March, November and December. The crowds are at their highest in July, August and December, while temperatures are at their highest (over 90 degrees for an average high) in June, July and August.
2. Determine where you want to stay- For lodging options, you can choose to stay on-site at a Disney resort or at an off-site hotel. Disney resort prices range from about $100 per night at a value resort to about $359 per night at a deluxe resort. For off-site options, there are numerous hotels outside of Disney World, including major hotels like Hyatt Regency, Best Western and Holiday Inn.
3. Understand which park admission options are available- There are several options available for park tickets. Your main choices are Base, Park Hopper and Park Hopper Plus. Base tickets allow admission to one of the 4 theme parks, per day. Park Hopper tickets allow unlimited admission to all 4 theme parks, per day. Park Hopper Plus tickets allow unlimited admission to all 4 theme parks, per day, plus choice of admission to one of the following: Blizzard Beach Water Park, Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course, Oak Trail Golf Course or Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course.
4. Review park itineraries to plan ahead- With 4 theme parks, 2 water parks, 4 golf courses and an array of other entertainment venues, there is a lot to see and do at Disney World. So, having an itinerary is essential. One of the best spots to find great itineraries is here. Itineraries show you examples of attractions and restaurants that you shouldn’t miss.
5. Research the airline and airfare options available- Instead of searching through each hotel’s individual website, use one of the popular airfare search engines or aggregators instead. These sites are designed to help you save time and money. Expedia is a website to search for and book airline tickets, car rentals, cruises, hotel reservations and vacation packages. Kayak is a fare aggregator/travel search engine.
6. Read books and visit websites to gain valuable information- There are several books and websites to check out so that you can gain some valuable information about Disney World, before you head out on vacation. For book ideas, check out The Complete Walt Disney World 2017 (the 2018 edition will be available December 31, 2017) by Julie Neal, The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney 2017 (the 2018 edition is also available) by Bob Sehlinger and Birnbaum’s 2017 (the 2018 edition is also available) Walt Disney World: The Official Guide by Birnbaum Guides. For websites, look at www.allears.net, www.mousesavers.com and www.disneytouristblog.com.
A little extra planning before your trip will give you more time to discover the hidden Disney World treasures while you’re there!