The Walt Disney World Resort is situated in the heart of Florida. With its 15,000 hectares, the American theme park can even call itself the largest in the world. Over 59 million visitors come to the Walt Disney World Resort every year. You can enjoy adventure worlds, film heroes, Disney characters, shows, musicals, and roller coasters only 30 kilometres from Orlando. In total, the resort has four main theme parks and two water parks.
The Visit and Tips
Disney World Resort is a theme park of superlatives, featuring over 40 themed hotels, golf courses and 400 restaurants and food stalls. It has everything from fast food to fine dining. In addition, there is a wide selection of souvenir shops. Tickets should be purchased in advance online because there will be a large rush of visitors. Tickets can also be purchased for the individual parks.
Due to the size of the park, you should plan a few days for a visit. A free shuttle service connects the parks with an infrastructure of trains, buses and boats. A good tip is to use the Disney app to plan your trip. It shows you the waiting times for the individual attractions, the times of the parades or where the Disney characters in the park, such as Mickey Mouse, are at the moment. Reservations and check-ins are also possible. The programme of shows and musicals is variable. Current information can be found here.
The Magic Kingdom Park literally captures the magic at Walt Disney World Resort and is the most visited theme park. The centrepiece here is the Cinderella Castle, which is illuminated every evening as a fairytale highlight. Visitors will also find many other attractions here. On a jungle cruise you can embark on an adventure with a boat tour. For all scary fans, there is a ghost mansion with a labyrinth of haunted chimneys.
A visit to the amusement park would not be complete without riding "Dumbo, the flying elephant". Shows and musicals are also on offer. Enjoy a performance by a country western band in the Country Bear Jamboree or learn about the history of the United States in the Hall of Presidents. There is a daily parade in the afternoon in Magic Kingdom Park, where Disney characters parade through the park. There is also always a fireworks display at Cinderella Castle in the evening.
Epcot Park is about twice the size of Magic Kingdom Park, at 120 hectares. Epcot stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow and has as its core theme the technical innovations and human achievements in international cultures. You can recognize the park immediately by the large, spherical building.
This sphere is also home to the most popular attraction, the Spaceship Earth ride. The World Celebration provides information about the history of communication. The theme park is divided into three further areas. These include World Discovery, World Nature and World Showcase.
In Hollywood Studios, all Star Wars fans will get their money's worth. In Galaxy's Edge, for example, the stories from the films are brought to life. At the Star Tours, you can experience a motion-simulated 3D flight up close. For those who like to tinker, the Droid Depot is the place to go to build your own droid.
Part of the Hollywood Studios theme park is not only the Star Wars world, but also Toy Story Land. On the Slinky Dog Dash and Alien Swirling Saucers, you'll find colourful attractions and wild roller coaster rides.
Animal Kingdom Park - as the name suggests - is all about the animal kingdom. You'll get a real thrill on exotic jungle trails and fast-paced roller coasters. On Expedition Everest, you'll flee from a yeti on a train through icy Himalayan peaks. But there are also live animals like lions, elephants and tigers to marvel at.
The highlight is Pandora - the world of Avatar. On the Avatar flight, you can fly over a moon on a 3D ride on the back of a mountain banshee. The Na'vi River Voyage takes you to an alien world of a bioluminescent rainforest.
There are two different water parks at Walt Disney World Resort: Disney's Typhoon Lagoon and Disney's Blizzard Beach. Here you can find everything you would expect from a water park, from surf pools to numerous water and tyre slides.
In 2021, Walt Disney World Resort celebrated its 50th anniversary. The theme park was opened on 01.10.1971. However, the idea for it was born years before, in 1958. There was still the guiding principle of being able to expand the area indefinitely. About 400 million dollars were spent on construction until the opening. The project started with 4,000 hectares - so today the theme park has almost quadrupled in size to 15,000 hectares. The park was named after Walt Disney, who founded it and died in 1966.
There are now 14 different Disney parks worldwide, divided among five resorts. One of these resorts is even located in Europe: Disneyland Paris.
How to get there
Walt Disney World Resort is located about 30 kilometres from Orlando. The easiest way to get there is by car. Parking is available in front of each park.
- From Orlando airport, it's just a 20 to 30-minute drive.
- The cost is 25 to 45 euros, depending on location and season.
- Parking for hotel guests is slightly cheaper.
- At the water parks, the standard parking spaces are free of charge.
Travelling by public transport is very expensive, taking more than three hours.
It is therefore recommended to travel with a private driver, who can be conveniently booked via the app Lyft. A safe journey is also guaranteed with Mears Private Ground Transportation, which can also be compared to a taxi company.