Like we really need a good reason to visit the most magical place on earth, 2013 is sure to be one of the most exciting years to date with all the newly released aspects and the ones that are set to hit the parks in just a few months time. If you add that with a solid base of Disney love, you have the recipe for a year to remember. So, counting down to my personal best reason, here are the top five reasons you should consider a trip to Walt Disney World in 2013.
#5. New Interactive Queues and Redesigned Rides
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad in the Fronteirland area of Magic Kingdom has just received a face lift. Next time you visit you will have to take a look at the new (and old looking) aspects to this interactive queue. You will become immersed in the story of the Big Thunder Mountain Mining Company as never before when you encounter newly built areas showing the office of the company, the room where explosives are kept and there will be brand new aspects to keep you and your family entertained as you wait your plunge into the deep caverns of the mountain.
Test Track Presented by Chevrolet in EPCOT has also received its own revamping. What was one a testing factory for new car parts is now a Chevrolet Design Center dedicated to allowing you, the guest, to create your own virtual vehicle to test while on the track. All the old tests you were subjected to as a “crash dummy” are most all gone now and have been replaced with newly designed test chambers that fit the automotive world today. But the glorious victory lap at the end remains, and is waiting for you to conquer again!
#4. MyMagic+ and My Disney Experience
Say goodbye to your old “Keys to the World” (the card that let you into your hotel, the parks, etc.) and say hello to the new MagicBand. This new wrist band, made of a flexible red plastic with a black boarder, will contain all the information of your vacation: hotel access, park entry, dining plan, access to FastPass+ and a payment option. There is no solid release date, although numerous tests have been done with annual pass holders, and the response is said to have been good.
My Disney Experience is a new app you can download onto your phone or use online to link up your reservation and plan an itinerary or book reservations for dining. I personally have used this tool since I am celebrating my Honeymoon in Disney World in two weeks and love it! Making reservations and seeing all the available times for restaurants has never been so easy, especially if you have dealt with the reservation phone line. You also have the ability to explore each of the parks and” favorite” the rides you love most. Then when you are in the parks, the app recognizes your location and offers you wait times and FastPass return times for all the attractions in the park you are in. It also serves as a map and a GPS when you are in the parks. Definitely a feature worth having, especially since it is free to download!
#3. Art of Animation
After years of planning, rumors and waiting, I have just about given up hope on the other half of Pop Century ever being built. But, if that wasn’t going to happen this year, having a new Value Resort completely devoted to what are (arguably) some of the best Disney movies of all time is a pretty fair trade off for me. This new resort in addition to All-Star Movies allows for just about any guest to find a movie themed resort that suites them. All-Star Movies has graced us with 101 Dalmatians, Toy Story, Fantasia, The Mighty Ducks and Herbie: The Love Bug, but now with Art of Animation we can add to their ranks The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, Finding Nemo and Cars. Rooms are already being booked up quicker than expected for a Value Resort, but that must just be the appeal of these fabulously themed resort areas.
#2. New Fantasyland
The pictures have been leaked to us for months, the opening ceremony was spectacular and the hype has been everywhere! With two brand new castles, new dining opportunities and Character Meet and Greet locations, an additional Flying Dumbo ride, and even more scheduled to release in the coming months and years? That is something you do not want to miss out on! Beast’s Castle looming in the distance, guarded by gargoyles and seemingly lost in time; Ariel’s castle, nestled right by the sea and the brand new Storybook Circus with reimagined ways to meet Minnie, Daisy, Donald and Goofy all add up for a truly magical time. Belle will take you on a journey through her magic mirror, Ariel takes you under the sea and Goofy soars to new heights as he attempts to become the next greatest stunt man at the circus! The Be Our Guest restaurant is hard to get dinner reservations for, but everyone is welcome to enjoy their quick service options for lunch. The exact replica ballroom will make you feel like dancing as you become totally immersed in Beauty and the Beast scenery.
Surely all those new and exciting aspects would make New Fantasyland the top of my list, but no! The crown jewel of the 2013 Disney experience has go to be:
#1. Limited Time Magic
Disney has hit the nail right on the head with this one, if you ask me! Based upon the concept that our happiest moments in life are fleeting and only happen for that “limited time”, Disney is making its own special memories just for you and your family! Each week the Disney Company releases the details for the next weeks limited time magic event. Already this year we have seen retired characters return for meet and greets, limited time merchandise and mouse ears only available to those in the parks, special pictures with famous Disney couples for Valentine’s Day and much more. If you are going down to Disney and have not heard of these, keep an eye on the your favorite Disney blogs and boards for more details!
So there you have it, my top five reasons to vacation at Walt Disney World in 2013! Happy planning everyone!