The addition of Disney Magic Bands has made vacationing at the most magical place on earth even better. However, you probably have a lot of questions about how it works and the benefits Magic Bands offer. Find out what exactly a Disney Magic Band is, how to get one, how to set it up, and how to use it at Disney World. Our step by step video shows you everything you need to know about Disney Magic Bands.

Learn more about MyMagic+ & FastPass+ with Bianca, one of our travel experts: 

Pretty easy, right? For even more information regarding Disney Magic Bands and their benefits, put these tried and true FastPass+ tips to use. They’ll help you make the most of your time at Disney World Theme Parks, all while letting you plan a personalized vacation for your family.

For Disney World ticket deals that include MyMagic+, visit Reserve Orlando.

Bianca is a travel professional, and prides herself on her knowledge of vacation destinations big and small. With 8 years in the tourism industry, she brings you updates on how to make the most out of your time, money and energy in her favorite cities throughout America.

As you hop from one ride to the next at Universal Orlando Resort, you’re going to work up an appetite. There are a lot of places to eat at the park, and it can be hard to know which have the best food and atmosphere. With Universal Orlando dining options offering three distinct places to dine – Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and CityWalk – options are incredibly vast. Where should you eat when you bring your family to the park? Follow my lead, and stop at any of my favorite Universal Orlando dining spots for a quick bite to eat.


Krusty Burger at Universal Studios

Fast Food Boulevard: Have you always imagined eating at the same restaurants made famous on The Simpsons? Now you can at Universal Studios. A large food court area, immersively themed, recreates fan favorites such as Krusty Burger, Luigi’s Pizza, Cletus’ Chicken Shack, Frying Dutchman and Lisa’s Tea Shop of Horrors. The food at all of the Fast Food Boulevard is well made, and it’s a wonderful place to cool off as all seating is indie. For my money, I’d pony up to Krusty Burger. Order the Clogger Burger if you think you can handle it! If you don’t have the kids with you, Moe’s Tavern is worth visiting too. Drink a beer at Homer’s local bar, and see if Barney shows up!

Three Broomsticks

The Three Broomsticks at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

The Three Broomsticks: Harry Potter fans, listen up! This is the place to eat at Islands of Adventure. Located inside the Hogsmeade portion of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, The Three Broomsticks is a highly imaginative, extremely detailed recreation from the hit movies and books. Order the fish and chips from the British themed menu, then dine just like Harry and the muggles did. I prefer to dine inside as to get the full Potter experience. But, if you’d like a break from the hustle and bustle of the park a large deck is available off the back of the restaurant.

Red Oven Pizza Bakery

Red Oven Pizza Bakery at Universal CityWalk

Red Oven Pizza Bakery: For this quick meal option, we head to CityWalk. Families can all agree on pizza, which makes this an easy choice.   Cheese, carbs and saucy goodness are rolled into one tasty pie at Red Oven. A large selection of pizza types, divided into red and white, thick and thin crusts, and pizza toppings ranging from prosciutto to arugula and regular old pepperoni makes this a step above other pizza joints. Affordable price points and an excellent view of CityWalk add to the reasons why this is a top pick.


Blondie’s at Universal’s Islands of Adventure

Blondie’s: On a hot Orlando day, sometimes you crave something simple and fresh. This Toon Lagoon Café, home to the famous Dagwood sandwich, serves made-to-order deli sandwiches. Stacked with fresh meats, savory cheeses and your choice of veggies and dressings, these piled-high sandwiches satisfy the biggest appetites. Dine on Beef, Chicken or Vegetarian Kebabs and Greek Salads. There’s also Hummus, Greek yogurt, Fruit Cups, Pretzels and Churros. And subdue that adventurer’s thirst at this Coke® Freestyle station. Fresh-baked onion and poppy seed bread piled high with baked ham, turkey, roast beef, American and Swiss cheese, all topped with lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise and mustard for less than $7 is the best buy at Islands of Adventure. Bonus – Toon Lagoon usually is less busy than other sections of the park so you can beat the crowds and relax a bit.

Fire Eaters Grill

Fire Eater’s Grill

Fire Eater’s Grill and Doc Sugrue’s Desert Kebab House: Okay, technically these are two places. I thought I’d combine them, though, as they are right next to each other and offer similar options. Infused with Greek flavors, Fire Eater’s best combination is the lamb gyro sandwich. At the Kebab House the must order is…you guessed it – the kabobs! Dine on beef, chicken or vegetarian Kebabs. Greek salads and hummus.   If the kiddos are feeling picky, don’t worry. Chicken tenders and hot dogs are served too.

The next two options are locate on-site at Universal Orlando hotels. Easily accessible by walking or boat ride, these quick service food options let you see another side of the Universal resorts.


Bayliner Diner: Sam Howzit/Flickr

Bayliner Diner: Hop scotch back in time to the 60s at this retro themed diner. Take a boat ride (or a 5-10 minute walk) to Bayliner Diner, located at the new Cabana Bay Beach Resort. A large food court area has six stations, each offering different selections such as grilled foods, pizza, pasta, salads, stir fry and Panini’s. Order from the eclectic menu, then get comfortable in on of the cozy booths. Watch two large screen televisions playing commercial and clips from the 1960s to get extra nostalgic. Although the area is totally retro, modern conveniences like multiple charging ports for diners let your relax and recharge.

Sals Market Deli

Sal’s Market Deli/Yelp: Ron R.

Sal’s Market Deli: My top pick for quick dining, on-site hotel options is Sal’s Market Deli. You can walk here from Universal Orlando, but as its 20 minutes I recommend taking the harbor boat ride to Portofino Bay Hotel. Once you arrive, you’ll find Sal’s just off the dock. Just follow your appetite to the Italian deli for Salvatore pizza, classic Italian sandwich, antipasto salad and meatball parmigiana. The European charm of the market accentuated by harborside seating. Beautiful views, a menu with Italian flair and low price points make Sal’s an excellent choice.

Those are the best seven Universal Orlando dining choices for a quick bite to eat or delicious snack. Do you have a favorite place to eat at Universal? Tell me about it in the comments!

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Orlando to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

march_eventsCheck out these Orlando events happening this March 2016:

March 1 – April 16:  Universal Orlando Resort’s Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras at Universal Orlando combines electrifying concerts, a dazzling parade, delicious Cajun cuisine and plenty of authentic New Orleans musicians to create one of the biggest parties in Orlando, Florida.

March 1-5: Busch Gardens Real Music Concert Series
This longest running concert series returns Wednesdays through Saturday’s beginning in February. Listen to live music that will span the decades from the 1930s-1970s. Concerts are held each day at 11:30am, 1pm, and 3:30pm. Concerts are included with regular Busch Gardens admission, but reservation tickets are required to guarantee a seat.

March 1-6:  Bands, Brew & BBQ at SeaWorld Orlando
This annual SeaWorld festival continues during March with plenty of barbeque, beer, and bands.  Bands, Brew & BBQ is included with park admission. With a special salute to America’s Heroes, SeaWorld will have special discounts and offers for all enlisted men and women and retirees from the military.

March 3-13: Florida Strawberry Festival
The strawberry is at the center of this festival, served up in a variety of desserts and dishes.  Celebrate American traditions through fun contests and top-notch entertainment.  Enjoy exhibits of agriculture, commerce, industry, livestock, fine arts, horticulture and crafts.

March 2 – May 30:  Annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival
Epcot guests will be treated to topiaries, garden displays, seminars by celebrity HGTV designers, a stellar line-up for the Flower Power Concert Series and a gorgeous butterfly house during the annual International Flower & Garden Festival at Walt Disney World.

March 5-13:  Bike Week Orlando 2016
More than 100,000 Harley-Davidson enthusiasts from across the globe turn out for this annual event, headquartered at the Orlando Harley-Davidson Historic Factory Dealership, a detailed re-creation of the 1910 factory and the 1903 “shack” in which the Harley legend was born.  Festivities include live music, games and shows.

March 14-20: Arnold Palmer Invitational
One of the crown jewels of the PGA Tour, the event annually attracts one of the strongest international fields of the season. Cost $50 per day/per adult.

March 18-20: 8th Annual Wine and Seafood Festival
Located at Lakeridge Winery, this signature event features local artists and crafters displaying their work. Lakeridge wine, beer, soft drinks and a variety of tasty seafood specialties will be available for purchase, along with complimentary Winery tours and tastings.

March 18-20: Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival
The three-day event also features show-stopping jazz, children’s activities, great eats and over 200 juried artists.

When you’re out and about and looking for fun in Orlando, some of the best ways to have a good time are found at Orlando restaurants with live music. Even casual eateries can boost their ambiance with a performance by talented musicians. So where should you go when you want to you’re searching for a restaurant with entertainment and good food? Follow these recommendations to combine a meal with house bands, strolling guitarists, violin players and more.

Orlando Restaurants

I should mention, not all of these Orlando restaurants feature live entertainment nightly so be to sure to call ahead for a schedule.

House of Blues Orlando Yelp

House of Blues: Yelp/ Jay T.

House of Blues
1490 Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, Disney Springs, Lake Buena Vista
Live jazz and blues is performed on select nights, usually around 10:30pm. The late-night menu is limited to bar food, but it’s seriously good bar food.

729 Lee Road, Orlando
This upscale steakhouse has two lounges, each with a different tempo. The Piano Lounge is ideal for an after-dinner drink, while the traditional lounge
has a livelier atmosphere.

Dexter's Facebook


Dexter’s of Winter Park
558 W. New England Ave., Winter Park
Dine on upscale American comfort food and specialty drinks while listening to rock bands at Dexter’s, a restaurant geared towards the young-adult crowd.

Mama Della’s Ristorante
Portofino Bay Hotel, 5601 Universal Blvd., Orlando
Experience strolling musicians playing guitar, violin, and more, at this
family style Italian restaurant.



Wildside BBQ Bar & Grill
700 E. Washington St., Orlando
Eat succulent barbeque while listening to weekend acoustic jam sessions.

Islands Dining Room
Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando, 6300 Hollywood Way, Orlando
Treat yourself to some island flavor at this dining room, where Pacific Rim cuisine is combined with a strolling musician plays Hawaiian music.

WDW Dining Lifestyle Shoot. 2013. Photographer: Melanie Acevedo

Victoria & Alberts

Victoria & Albert’s
4401 Floridian Way, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, Walt Disney World
Central Florida’ most elegant—and expensive restaurant—has harpist on-hand to accompany the already posh setting.

Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe
205 E. 1st St., Sanford
Casual German dining with strolling accordion player and, at times, yodeling.

B.B. King Blues Club/Facebook

B.B. King Blues Club/Facebook

B.B. King’s Blues Club
9101 International Dr, Orlando
(407) 370-4550
Jazz takes center stage at B.B. King’s Blues Club, where a house band and select featured performers play bluesy jams. Combine the music with southern cuisine for a one of the best Orlando restaurants with live music.

Bob Marley: A Tribute to Freedom
6000 Universal Blvd #730, Universal CityWalk, Orlando
(407) 224-2262
Dine on Caribbean food while listen to reggae beats inspired by the island and Bob Marley.



6000 Universal Studios Plaza #704, Universal CityWalk, Orlando
(407) 224-2155
Whisk away on an island breeze at Margaritaville, where tropical cocktails and cuisine are accompanied by live bands.

Now, grab a drink, your best friend or main squeeze, and enjoy a night out at these Orlando restaurants.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Orlando to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.

When you visit LEGOLAND, why not stay close to the park? With hotels near LEGOLAND Orlando, you can stay minutes away from the attraction making it easy to play while you stay.

LEGOLAND_Hotel_Standard-Pirate-Suite-Adult-Sleeping-AreaLEGOLAND Hotel
Stay within walking distance of LEGOLAND Florida at the LEGOLAND Hotel. The five-story, 152-room Hotel immerses guests into a creative LEGO world designed to bring children’s imaginations to life. More than two million LEGO bricks make up over 2,000 LEGO models throughout the Hotel. The LEGOLAND Hotel is built for kids to take control, with LEGO surprises around every corner.

Best_Western_Auburndale_Inn___Suites_(67359)Best Western Auburndale Inn & Suites
With LEGOLAND just a short drive away, Best Western Auburndale provides guests with a comfortable yet affordable place to stay while away. This 100% smoke-free property offers free Wi-Fi, complimentary breakfast, in-room microwaves and mini refrigerators, as well as free daily hot breakfast and parking, a fitness room, an outdoor pool, flexible meeting spaces, and more.

Ramada_Davenport_Orlando_South_(50455)Ramada Davenport Orlando South
Stay at the Ramada Davenport Orlando South for easy access to Interstate 4, making access to both LEGOLAND and Disney World convenient. The hotel offers a hotel with pool and bar, modern fitness center, free Wi-Fi, business center, and restaurant and lobby bar. In-room amenities include work desk, iron, ironing board, hair dryer, coffeemaker, microwave refrigerator and flat screen HDTV.

Crestwood_Suites__(92955)Crestwood Suites
Crestwood Suites Extended Stay Hotel offers a contemporary twist on the average extended stay properties. Rooms are spacious and appointed with wall-mounted flat screen TVs, pillow top beds, sitting area, sofa sleeper, and full kitchens. Lakeland can also enjoy our complimentary continental breakfast, a convenient business center with free access to computers and printer, an on-site fitness center, sparkling swimming pool and a convenient on-site guest laundry facility. For added convenience, our hotel also features an on-Fairways_Florida_Villas_(046)site guest pantry and is located just off Interstate I-4 with easy access to restaurants and downtown Lakeland.

Fairways Florida Villas
Featuring luxury vacation homes located near the Walt Disney World® Resort area and other top Orlando attractions, Fairways Florida Villas offers an affordable lodging option ideal for families and groups visiting Central Florida. Many of the vacation rentals include private pools, master suites, fully equipped kitchens, game rooms,
Best_Western_Park_View_Hotel_(002)high-speed internet, beautiful golf course views and more.

Shergill Grand Hotel Conference Center Resort
A traditional-style hotel overlooking LEGOLAND® Florida, Shergill Grand Hotel Resort offers comfortable and convenient lodging for guests visiting the Central Florida area. The property provides free Wi-Fi; a daily complimentary breakfast; a tropical-themed outdoor pool, whirlpool spa and poolside bar; an on-site fitness center; 5,000 square feet of meeting space; and more.

Choose any of the hotels near LEGOLAND Orlando and your stay will not only be comfortable but convenient.

Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Orlando to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.