Searching for a break from the winter blues? Head to the Sunshine State for spring break. There are endless things to do in spring break in Orlando. From character-filled day dreams at Disney World to adventure-themed thrills at Universal Orlando Resort, attractions cater to families with kids of all ages. Need a nudge to get your spring break started? Read on to find things to do Orlando Spring Break 2016.

Make a Splash at Orlando Water Parks

Aquatica___SeaWorld_s_Waterpark_(008)

Aquatica

Nothing breaks the winter blues better than a day splashing under the Orlando sun. Kick off your snow boots, slip into some flip flops, and bask in the refreshing excitement of Orlando water parks. The choice is yours really, with five aquatic attractions available. Aquatica is the perfect choice for families who want to combine animal encounters with water thrills, while Wet ‘n Wild ranks high with older kids looking for extreme aquatic fun. Want to learn how to surf? Try the ultimate indoor wave at Fantasy Surf. Don’t forget about Disney’s Blizzard Beach either. With tickets starting at $58, it’s more affordable than you may think.

See What’s in Bloom at Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

epcot_copyright_0325bz_8037gd

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

In the past, Epcot was thought to be the adult side of Walt Disney World. With a focus on global attractions and culinary delights, it’s easy to see why. However, Epcot appeals to kids too. This is especially true during the International Flower & Garden Festival this spring. Held March 2 through May 30, the event features elaborate topiary displays showcasing Disney characters in a splendor of greenery, flowers and colors. In addition, there are pop-up outdoor kitchens to try and Garden Rocks Concert Series musicians to listen to like Gin Blossoms and The Guess Who.

Experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Harry Potter

Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Kids and adults alike are fanatics for all things Harry Potter. At Universal Orlando Resort, immerse yourself in the worlds of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Both bring the Wizarding World of Harry Potter to life. At Hogsmeade you can explore the iconic Hogwarts Castle, surrounded by the village of Hogsmeade where you can eat at the Three Broomsticks and find your own magical wand at Ollivander’s. Plus, you can join Harry Potter and friends on The Forbidden Journey for a thrilling adventure filled with magical creatures, a quidditch match and more. Before you board the ride, you tour through Hogwarts Castle, making your way through the familiar classrooms and corridors of Hogwart School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Hop aboard the Hogwarts Express for a trip to Diagon Alley, the newest area withing the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Traipse through the streets of London, browse through shops for wizard robes and quidditch supplies, dine at the Leaky Cauldron, and then ride the heist-themed Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. Wash it all down with a frothy butter beer!

Catch Spring Training at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports

ESPN Wide World of Sports

ESPN Wide World of Sports

Are your and your kid’s diehard baseball fans? During Orlando Spring Break 2016, see the action up-close in a spring training game at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports. The Atlanta Braves call the field home for spring, and play some of the best teams in baseball. The St. Louis Cardinals, Baltimore Orioles, and New York Yankees are a few of the ball clubs on tap. See if your team is on the schedule, which runs through April 2, 2016. It’s great way to see your favorite players up close without having to pay Major League prices. Plus, you’ll get the inside, pre-season scoop on your favorite baseball team. Score!

Travel to the Space Coast

Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach

Need another Orlando Spring Break 2016 idea? One the great things about Orlando is its easy access to the coast. Travel to the Space Coast, and make a day of it by exploring beaches like Cocoa and Melbourne. Add a visit to nearby Kennedy Space Center to get an inside look at the NASA Space program. It’s an extensive attraction that lets parents sneak it a bit of education during their spring break. On top of that, it’s interesting too! Stop for lunch in Downtown Titusville, known for its shopping and dining, and if there’s time take a peek at the animals of Brevard Zoo.

Take to the Outdoors

1024px-Madison_Blue_Springs_SP_spring01

Blue Springs State Park: By Ebyabe/Wikimedia Commons

Florida is a known for it’s man-made theme parks, but there’s a whole lot of family fun found outside in Orlando. Trek to Wekiva Island to go boating, canoeing, fishing and kayaking. If you just want to relax and soak up some Florida sunshine, reserve a cabana. It comes equipped with comfy places to lounge, a grill and a fridge. At Blue Springs State Park you can hike, picnic, swim and even see majestic manatees. Of course, for a little more adventure outside you can opt for an Orlando airboat tour. These high-speed boats put the wind in your hair and place you right in the middle of Florida’s everglades. Be prepared to see an alligator up close! For even more outdoor adventures, head to Forever Florida. They have ziplines, horseback rides, safari tours and more.

These are some of the best things to do on your Orlando Spring Break 2016. Take advantage of all the sunny state has to offer on your next escape from the norm.


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.

0918ZY_0886CG_RSZNeed help planning your dream Disney World vacation? There’s a lot to see and do at the most magical place on Earth, and it can be a bit overwhelming trying to figure out what to do. I’ve been many times, and still haven’t done it all. However, I can help you start to plan your itinerary by offering Disney questions designed to help you find the type of vacation ideal for your family. 

Let’s do a quick rundown of activities available at Disney World Theme Park:

  • Disney Copyright Family MKFour major theme parks: Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom and Epcot
  • Two waterparks: Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon
  • Five golf courses
  • Downtown Disney
  • BoardWalk Entertainment District
  • Over 20 large resorts

Granted, you most likely won’t see all there is to see at Disney on your vacation. Keep these Disney questions
in mind to help you narrow down your selection.

Disney_BigThunderMtn1) How many parks do you want to visit?
The most common answer is all of them! I recommend purchasing Disney Park Hopper tickets to get the most out of your days. Magic Kingdom is by far the best and most endearing park, so visiting there is a must. If this is your first time at Disney you’ll want to take your time at each park you do visit. If you park hop, which is recommend to maximize your time, you can hit a park that opens early and divide your day with a park that stay open late.

Disney_s_Caribbean_Beach_Resort_(043)2) Where will you stay?
This factors into a lot of your vacation planning as location is key, but so is price. Luckily, there are a wide range of lodging choices available in Orlando. If you can, splurge and stay at a Disney World Resort Hotel. Although they can be pricey, they are so worth it! Disney hotels pamper you in every way, and the parks are literally at your doorstep. Many off-site properties are located just a few miles from Disney World’s entrance. So, you can have the convenience of being near Disney World yet save a few bucks for other vacation expenses.

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade_0013) How long will you stay in Orlando?
This question certainly factors into both of the above questions, but after learning all there is to do at Disney World Theme Parks you may want to rethink your game plan. For instance, when I first visited Disney World I wanted to see it all! So, I made the most of my park hopper pass and went to three parks in one day! This was way too much, way too fast – especially if you really want to take your time and experience the unique activities and attractions at each park. If you want to visit all four theme parks, which is ideal, you will want to have at least five full days. Want to add on extras like a round of golf, Disney Waterparks or DisneyQuest? Then plan on seven days. This way you can get the full Disney experience without running around like a mouse chasing after cheese! Plus, seven day park hopper passes are only marginally more than five day tickets ($20 more for two more days of fun). 

39640-MYW-Web-FastPass-487x2744) What type of tickets should you buy?
You may have noticed I’m partial to Disney park hopper tickets. However, depending on the length of stay you’ve picked Magic Your Way base Disney tickets or Waterpark Fun and More tickets might appeal to you. Water Park Fun & More tickets give each member of your travel party entry to one theme park a day, each day of your ticket. Want to enjoy more than one theme park per day? Choose the Park Hopper Water Park Fun & More Ticket. With so much to see and do here, you’ll love the ability to come and go from Theme Park to Theme Park on the same day. Plus you receive an equal number of separate admissions to any Walt Disney World Waterpark or DisneyQuest.

Magic Kingdom Fireworks

5) When to visit Disney World?
If you have children and don’t want to take them out of school, summer may be the only option for travel. However, if you are more flexible with your dates keep dates in mind for special Disney events and festivals. Highlights include Christmas, Halloween, Star Wars Weekends, Flower & Garden Festival, and Food & Wine Festival. When you visit also plays into crowd levels. The early fall, December prior to Christmas vacation, and mid-January through early March are all good times to visit. Summer is busy so plan on packing patience into your suitcase.


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.

Disney World Orlando may be known as the happiest place on Earth, but it’s also home to some top-notch Disney World thrill rides. From the Magic Kingdom to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the attractions at theme park pack an adrenaline punch.  If you’re the type, like me, who wants to mix the wonder of Disney characters and whimsy with exciting, heart-pumping rides this list is for you. Add adrenaline to your Orlando itinerary with this list of the top five Disney World thrill rides. 

  • Disney632 (2)
  • Disney632 (3)
  • orlando_halloween_weekend_2011_139
  • dscf3631
  • dscf3629
  • Disney632 (4)
  • Disney632 (5)
  • Big_Thunder_Mountain_Railroad_2
  • disney_0515au_4076dz_thunder

Top 5 Disney World Thrill Rides

1) Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
There is simply no better thrill within Disney World than the epic drop ride that is Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Disney has created a magnificently themed attraction, based on legend of The Hollywood Tower Hotel. Your elevator has been struck by lightning, sending passengers into the Twilight Zone. Is the elevator possessed or simply malfunctioning? Either way, you’re sure to walk away with a rush at this Disney Hollywood Studios pick.

Family Aerosmith Disney Hollywood Studios Copyright_RSZ2) Aerosmith Rock ‘n Roller Coaster
Climb aboard for a fast-paced, indoor coaster experience starring Aerosmith. This coaster is located right next door to Tower of Terror at Hollywood Studios, making it easy to ride both without traversing the park. This is a top thrill ride for me because of its dark aspect, making each twist and turn a total surprise. The fun factor is also amped as you’re hanging out with Aerosmith. I mean, those guys are legends!

3) Test Track
This newly revamped Epcot attraction packs a punch with its high speeds. Part coaster, part interactive experience, Test Track allows guests to create their own car then test its performance. Once designed, you climb into an actual car on a track then zoom forward to see how your car measures up. The visual stylings definitely standout, and have science-fiction, far-out quality. Excitement really builds as you hit the open track, hitting speeds and up to 65mph.

expedition everest4) Expedition: Everest
You can’t miss Expedition: Everest while visiting Animal Kingdom. The gargantuan mountain housing the ride is 200 feet tall after all. It ranks as one of the best thrill rides for its intense theming and unique elements like riding backwards. The theming of the ride is a true highlight; every element from the queue to the inside of the mountain and Yeti you race against are elaborately done.

5) Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
This might be a surprise pick, but it’s a favorite thrill ride families can enjoy together. Some of the others might be too much for younger visitors. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, while not a kiddie ride by any stretch, is tame enough at speeds of only 28mph. That said, the quick pace kept while traveling through the caves of the railroad, and up and down rocky cliffs, it can seem much faster. This is a great option for an appealing family thrill inside the Magic Kingdom at Disney World.

Purchase discount Disney tickets to tackle all of these adrenaline-inducing thrill rides!


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.

Have you ever wanted to try sky diving?  Then, iFly is the place for you as it offers a realistic sky diving experience without having to actually jump out of a perfectly good airplane.  You achieve the thrill and adrenaline rush of sky diving, but in a safe environment that even kids can try.  Curious about what indoor skydiving is really like? Read on to find out about my experience at iFly Orlando.

At iFly guests experience indoor sky diving in a vertical wind tunnel, which moves air up in a vertical column, creating the indoor skydiving experience. Flyers do not need any previous experience to fly, either. At iFly, you will learn how to fly your body in a controlled manner with the assistance of your instructor. Their professional flight instructors will provide you with all of your flight gear, along with the fundamental skills for body flight through a classroom training session. All you have to do is bring your sense of adventure!  Plus, kids and adults can both participate in this Orlando activity.

_586630
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I arrived at iFly Indoor Skydiving.  I was surprised (and relieved) the process turned out to be an easy one: Once you check-in you head to the iFly tower where you can watch other fliers test their skills. Soon enough, the training portion of the activity starts. An iFly Orlando indoor skydiving instructor – mine was named Stryker – showed my group how to control our bodies in the flight chamber and outfitted us with flight gear such as a flight suit, helmet, and glasses. Safety first, people! Then, we headed to the flight deck to start our experience. Even though I still had no idea what was in store (boy, did I not!) I was excited to fly and ready to go!

My group, which had about 10 or so people, filed into the waiting area and watched as Stryker showed off some high-flying moves in the flight chamber. He was like Spider Man in there, hopping from wall to wall and flipping like a gymnast through the air. Purely for show, we were instructed to not try these moves during our turn. Each member of the group gets two flight times, lasting one minute each. This might not sound like a long time, but a minute lasts a lot longer when you’re flying through the air. Your instructor is inside the air tunnel with you, helping you control your body and guiding you as needed.

_586629

No worries if you have trouble controlling your body. I didn’t have the moves down perfectly but Stryker made the experience of flying a fun one, especially when he guided me towards the top of the tunnel and spun me around and around at varying heights before we glided back towards earth. (Earth in this case means the base of the tunnel but still – that’s how it felt.) It had to be my favorite part of the iFly Orlando experience! I couldn’t help but have a silly grin plastered on my face and the subsequent photos and video captured it all. That’s right – iFly is shooting your entire session and I highly recommend purchasing the multimedia package available. It’s the only way to see yourself in all your indoor skydiving glory.
Experience the exhilaration of free falling at iFly Indoor Sky Diving!  It’s a unique activity you won’t soon forget! 

Find out more about my experience at iFly Orlando.
Read More »
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. Before you pack your bags, get the latest scoop on Orlando vacations from Ashley.