Are you in America now it’s open again to UK and Irish visitors… if so, say hi to Donald from me if you’re in Orlando.
Orlando will be the first stop for visitors from these, and Irish shores, as our favourite US holiday destination.
We hooked up with our friends from Roller Coaster City.
And they took just enough time off the rides to update us on the thrilliest, spilliest place on Earth.
Stars in my eyes
Now in a Galaxy’s Edge far, far, away in Disney’s twin centre in Anaheim… well, two years ago I got a glimpse into the future in the first party to try out Star Wars world.
And the future is here now in the present and ready for y’all to see it both in California and here in Orlando.
Of course Mickey, Donald and their pals have been celebrating since last month their 50th birthday (well, not theirs, they’re much older but Disney World’s).
On a theme
And the four theme parks and beyond have been in fine song.
Among the most anticipated attractions, and the ones we’ve zeroed in on are:
Disney Enchantment, a new all-new nighttime extravaganza at Magic Kingdom Park, featuring captivating Disney music, enhanced lighting, stunning fireworks and immersive projection effects that extend from Cinderella Castle down Main Street, U.S.A.
And we’ve danced along to Mickey’s In Da House party on that very street and can advise that you lose all inhibitions (or was that just me, Mickey and Donald?)
Then there’s Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at Epcot, where guests shrink to the size of Chef Remy and race through Gusteau’s restaurant on a wild adventure.
You like your French gastronomeee, oui?
The Showbiz Lion and I
Now as a veteran of the Orlando theme parks I know how nothing sits still (well, it wouldn’t with you twirled this way and that).
Personally, I prefer a wet one, as my old sparring partner, Lady Lyons, Bev, of Showbiz Lion fame, would say.
And so we both loved Aquatica Orlando. AO can now boast Florida’s first-ever duelling waterslide, Riptide Race, which opened in the spring.
You’ll start atop a 68-foot tower and race side-by-side at top speeds, navigating tight loops and accelerations through indoor and outdoor sections.
While Florida also loves its natural as well as animated animals. And it has those in abundance, particularly flamingos.
In the Pink
The Flamingo Mingle at Discovery Cove is a new, exclusive animal experience where guests can feed and learn about our pink friends in an outdoor setting.
Another old pal I met back then in Anaheim is The Jurassic Park VelociCoaster which opened in June at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
The ride sends you catapulting up to 70mph and over 150ft in the air with the swiftest of prehistoric predators.
If you like your fun irreverent and green and ogre-like then you’ll love Shrek (guilty).
Guests can interact, dance and be photographed with multiple beloved characters from DreamWorks Animation’s hit film franchises, including Trolls, Madagascar and Kung Fu Panda – all in one location.
And seeing it’s all about you in ’22 then here’s what’s still to come.
Wet, wet, wet
Ice Breaker, SeaWorld Orlando’s first launch coaster, will open in February and riders will shiver through family-friendly adventures featuring four launches, both backwards and forwards.
It all culminates in a reverse launch with a 93ft tall spike with 100-degree angle, the steepest vertical drop in Florida.
Aquatica Orlando’s newest water slide, Reef Plunge, will launch in spring with guests sliding through translucent cutouts and rings.
You’ll get to twist and turn though 330ft of fiberglass; and zoom past a vibrant array of marine life.
Commerson’s dolphins, leopard sharks, sardines, and a variety of other cold-water fish will be part of the new dynamic habitat.
The standalone theme park will feature multiple rides, interactive attractions, fun live shows, themed playscapes and water play areas.
Phew, and you’ll be looking for somewhere to stay, but not just somewhere but the best Star Warsy place of them all.
Guests will “board” the starship Halcyon for an all-inclusive experience that puts them into the immersive world of Star Wars.
The hotel will debut as part of the new Disney 360 vacation concept that gives each guest a storyline upon arrival.
So, plenty of stories of your own to tell, like mines the week I met His Royal Quackness.
So, say hi to Donald from me if you’re in Orlando.
And Attraction Tickets who will look after your every care when you book with them.