What’s new for Orlando attractions? Orlando theme parks lure new and returning visitors with fresh features annually. International Drive, already lined with smaller attractions, has also gotten some attention.
The 30-acre, packed Volcano Bay water park included fast rides, a children’s area, numerous places to relax and innovative dining areas. There’s no waiting in lines here: a wearable device, a TapuTapu, alerts guests when it’s their turn. Volcano Bay, a miniature theme park, is located near the Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom has two new major experiences. Pandora — The World of AVATAR (based on the 2009 Avatar film) includes floating mountains, bioluminescent rainforests, a Banshee flying attraction and after-dark entertainment. A second nighttime show, “Rivers of Light”, has live performances, floating lanterns, water screens and swirling animal imagery.
At Hollywood Studios, The Star Wars Tour adds a 7-hour experience featuring the stage shows “Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away” and “March of the First Order.” Also check out the spectacular, nighttime themed dining experiences and character meet-and-greets.
Typhoon Lagoon’s new ride, Miss Adventure Falls, lasts a full two minutes as family-style rafts ascend the falls and then plunge through white-water to tour treasures gathered from around the world.
The Magic Kingdom offers a new nighttime parade called “Happily Ever After” featuring fireworks and characters from Disney films such as “Moana,” “Brave,” “Big Hero 6,” “Zootopia,” “The Princess & The Frog,” “Aladdin” and more.
The Kraken roller coaster turns into a virtual reality experience that sends guests on a deep sea mission where they encounter legendary creatures including the mighty Kraken.
In the Electric Ocean, a nighttime show offered only during select summer months, the ocean shines with bioluminescent lighting and lively dance music.
At the interactive Dolphin Nursery guests get better views of mother and baby dolphins interacting through large multi-level acrylic windows.
LEGOLAND debuted the immersive LEGO NINJAGO World ride in 2017. Guests shoot animated fireballs, lightning and more at a rogue’s gallery of villains. Keeps track of your score to see how you stack up against family, friends and other guests. The new LEGOLAND Beach Retreat features 83 single-story duplex accommodations, a themed pool, sand beach play area and restaurant.
iFly Indoor Skydiving recently moved to larger facilities next to WonderWorks and added a second all-glass wind tunnel.
Andretti Karting indoor go-kart facility on Universal Boulevard features electronic go-karting, zip lines, bowling, racing simulators, rock climbing, laser tag and a full-service restaurant.
FunSpot America added an 82-foot tall wooden coaster, the Mine Blower, that reaches speeds up to 50-mph in dark mine-shaft tunnels. The ride includes a barrel roll inversion, unusual for a wooden coaster.