Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Walt Disney World with Kids 2011

Congrats to Ally of Little Squirts blog who has won the copy of Walt Disney World with Kids! Please email me with your full name and address so we can send you your book! Thanks!

Walt Disney World with Kids by Kim Wright Wiley

Hi everyone! I have some great books coming up and am going to be doing a June Blast-O-Books where for about 10 days straight it’s going to be book giveaways galore, so be ready for that! Also, please check the previous giveaways for The Last Letter, The First Husband and Here, Home, Hope as these books have not been claimed yet!

In the meantime, who loves DISNEY!?!?!? Not sure if many of you know that I was born in Tampa and practically lived at Disney World when I was younger, back when all they had there was a castle and three-quarters of the characters didn’t exist!

Yep, there was just Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Cinderella and Donald when I was a kid! Hahah. Most of you know my author pal Kim Wright, who wrote the amazing Love in Mid Air. She is also a very talented travel author who writes and loves all things Disney! Today, I turn the blog over to her and she’s going to share some new stuff about WDW with you all, AND we’ve got a book offer for you as well! …

So here's Kim to share some Disney stuff with you all!

Walt Disney World really knows how to keep people coming back....they're constantly adding new stuff and updating attractions. I've been writing about Disney for 26 years, each year updating my travel guide Walt Disney World With Kids, and even though I stopped counting after 100 visits, I have to admit that Disney even manages to keep me on my toes!

On a recent press trip they debuted two new attractions, both of which were pretty darn amazing, and which I think are going to be huge hits.

STAR TOURS 3-D: The completely revamped Star Tours ride at Hollywood Studios has two great things going for it. One, they've created not just one new story line, but 54 of them. Well, actually it's a sort of mix and match story line with multiple beginnings, endings, and middles, which means they can be combined in 54 different ways. But you're always flying with C3P0 and R2D2 to one of the spots featured in the movies and the special effects are always amazing. That's partly due to the second great thing, which is the 3-D technology. Not only does it make you feel like you're really flying, but the 3-D effects have actually cut down on the tendency of the ride to give people motion sickness. (That was one of the few objections Disney guests had to the old ride. Simulated action can be tougher to take than real action and some people were tossing their intergalactic cookies.)

Anyway, it's back, more fun than ever, and the 40-inch height requirement means most kids are welcome aboard. I predict the multiple story line is going to be a big draw since lots of people will want to ride more than once. You know how obsessive Star Tours fans can be... the night before the opening they were lined up sleeping on the sidewalks outside of Hollywood Studios, like they were waiting for a rock concert! Anyway, if the line is longer than 30 minutes, use FASTPASS.

WILD AFRICA TREK: If you love animals and you love Kilimanjaro Safaris at the Animal Kingdom, you'll go gorilla over this. The Wild Africa Trek debuted a few months ago and I suspect Disney thought the $189 per person ticket price would make this an attraction for VIPs only. Surprise, surprise... everyone loves it so much the tours are overbooked and they're going from four tours a day to twelve, starting in June.

What makes it so hot? For starters, it's a 3-hour tour for anyone over the age of 8 and it gives you lots more chances to get lots closer to the animals. You walk on trails that weave around the animal compounds with your knowledgeable guides and get to walk over a swinging suspension bridge 50 feet above a river full of napping crocodiles. This "creek of crocs" part is really exciting and even though it's not really dangerous - you're tethered in with a bungee and the bridge is only Disney-designed to look as if it's creaky and broken - it does get your heart beating faster. Your walking tour is followed by a VIP safari in a special truck and a truly delicious lunch that's catered to your viewing platform that's located right in the middle of the savannah with the animals all around you.

I think the Trek is proving so popular because the trainers take plenty of pictures for you and answer all your questions in complete detail which make the trip both memorable and educational. It's the perfect basis for a school project and will help parents feel a lot less guilty if they've taken the kids out of school for the Disney trip. (For example, did you know a group of hippos are called a "bloat"? Neither did I.) Advance reservations are a must: Call (407) WDW-TOUR for more details.

To enter to win Kim’s amazing book, Walt Disney World with Kids 2011, tell me if you’ve taken the kids to Disney, and what was your favorite part of the trip? When we went, I LOVED the Buzz Lightyear Ride, and The Bug’s Life Show, but was TERRIFIED of Lilo and Stitch! That one was SCARY!!


Carly said...

I'm taking myself out of the running for this book as I live nowhere near Disney World and I have no kids.

However, we have gone to Disneyland three times over the past year and we love it there!

Definitely recommend World of Color at California Adventure.

Colleen Turner said...

Now this is a post for me! I am from Tallahassee, FL. and chose to go to Disneyworld for every holiday....I even chose to go there with a few friends and celebrate my 16th (and 30th to be truthful) birthday! Now that I have a 5 year old and live in Tampa (yeah Tampa!) we go multiple times a year! The best experience I have had with my son was last September. It wasn't too crowded and he was trying to lift the Sword in the Stone. Out of nowhere Peter Pan came up behind him and tried to lift it with him! He was so excited!

Nearl said...

I actually went for the first time a few years ago. I was with a friends nephews and had a blast. My favorite part was the Bugs Life show by far! The kids was the tower or terror. I just couldn't get myself to go on it though.

Ronit said...

We're in CA and have done Disneyland numerous times. We don't have a favorite part--we love it all! Hubby and I did spend the first 4 days of our honeymoon at Disney World and really want to go back someday!

Ally said...

We are taking ours for the first time in October! I would love this book!!

Anonymous said...

We took the kids to Disney when they were younger. We have a great picture of them at the Zurg ride. I would say the fun we had just before taking that picture was my favorite Disney memory.

-Donna W.

Erin T. said...

We went as a family to Disney World for Thanksgiving in 2001. Because air fare was so cheap due to 9/11 my parents could afford to pay for my older brother and I, as well as my two kids who were 6 and 4. At the time my younger brother was working at Disney (his main character was Tigger, but he was a lot of others as well).

My favorite part of the trip while we were there was knowing that as my girls were running up to Chip of Chip and Dale, or Gapetto from Pinocchio, or Tigger that it was actually their Uncle in there and they had no idea! My other favorite part of that trip happened after we came home. We tried so hard to find Cinderella that whole time but we never did find her. When my brother came home from Disney several months later he brought with him a video of Cinderella giving my girls a personal message apologizing for being so busy when they were at Disney, and not being able to meet them. They were so excited to have gotten that video I think they wore out the tape watching it over and over and over!

Anonymous said...

It is so sad, I can't even remember the last time I went to Disneyland. I don't expect to be going for another 2 years since the hubby feeels strongly not to take the little one there til she is 5.
Disney World, never been there... looks amazing, but would break the bank. Maybe one day! However I will pass on the book since I live nowhere near WDW.


Brenda L B said...

I have taken my daughter when she was like 3 to Disney World and she loved all the shows. Yes, we did enjoy the Bugs life show but my daughter heard us taking about how it was 3D and 4D and she was freaked out that something would jump out at her. Good memories. LOL!

Lindsay Elizabeth said...

I know this is crazy but I've actually never been to Disney (land or world) myself. Generally when I tell people that I’m almost 27 and haven’t been they assume I’ve had some traumatic childhood! Either way I often feel like I’m missing something when people RAVE about Disney, as the true Disney fanatics do!

Hopefully someday I’ll have some kiddos of my own to bring there and check it out for myself!

Unknown said...

I grew up in Anaheim & had a Disneyland annual pass for years. Sooo many memories there! Just in January for my nephews birthday we had a group of 18 (9 kids all day) and up to 23 at times. So much fun to see everyone have such a blast. :) My sister is taking her kids to Disney World next year, they've forfeited birthday parties for 2 years each to make this happen! :)

Erin B said...

This book looks fabulous! We are hoping (fingers crossed fingers crossed) to be able to go next year. I went twice as a child and then again about 3 years ago and was SHOCKED to see how much has changed!! I am so excited for my girls to experience the magic too :-}

Nanette said...

First of all...WTHeck is the dealio with people NOT claiming their FREE books? This annoys me to NO end...LOL!! :) Anyway, we have been to WDW twice...Once alone and again with our 6 year old. It was WAY FUN when we went alone!! :) The 6 year old was still to afraid of the dark to enjoy some of MY faves...like the Bug's Life Show etc. We had fun, tho. Can't afford to go back any time soon since we live in Alaska...but we have great memories. Thanks, Manic, once again for "hooking us up" with a free book. You SO totally ROCK!! Nan

Famous67 said...

Hi, Manic! This is the first time I have commented on your blog. I would love this book-we are planning our first family trip to Disney in February with the soon to be 12 year old prince of the house. I have only been to Disney once-for a sales conference when I was 31! Love your blog!

sklay723 said...

We live about two hours from Disney and my kids haven't been there since they turned four years old (they're five and a half now). We're taking them in two weeks and I can't wait!!! My favorite memory when they were little and we took them was going straight to the Dumbo ride, since that was the first ride I remember going on at the Magic Kingdom when I was little. :)

kwertz12 said...

we just took our girls to WDW last month. My favorite part of the trip was when we were riding on the ferry from the parking lot. My oldest (8 years old) started freaking out when she waw the castle. "THERE IT IS MOM!!!" It was her first visit. Anothe rfavorite part was when they gave us buttons that said "I'm celebrating..." then you had to write what you were celebrating. We were celebrating the adoption of our oldest by my husbad. So sweet! Also, my 8 month old dancing with Chip and Dale. OK...so I can't really pick my favorite...it was all my favorite!

Anonymous said...

I too am taking myself out of the running for this book because Disney is not in this year's budget.

We did go last year and we bought and followed all the great advice in Wald Disney World with Kids 2010. Great book! We went during spring break and I think we would have been disappointed if we hadn't followed the advice and developed a game plan for beating the crowds and avoiding lines!

My favorite part of Disney was the A Bug's Life show and all of the different countries of Epcot. I'd love to go back sans kids and drink my way around the world. Is that wrong? My then five-year-old's favorite ride was the Test Track at Epcot.

Colbey J

Megan130 said...

I am so excited for this contest as we just booked a trip to Disney with my mom and our 2 youngest (of 4). We have taken 3 of our kids at different ages and it's so fun to see how they react, what they remember from trips, their excitement!

This will be our youngest's first trip. Very excited to see her reaction! And our 4yo's 2nd trip (15m old last time). So doubt he remembers!

I love seeing their faces light up when they see the castle up close the first time! And their excitement on the monarail the closer they get! Such a magical experience!

I cant' wait to add to my children's memories! And would love to win this book to learn even more about Disney before we go!!!

Thank you so much!

izza said...

This book really guides a lot of Disney lovers including me, and good thing there are Disney Stroller Rental nearby.