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Planning a trip to Orlando

Hampton Roads
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Planning a trip to Orlando

Hi!

I'm attempting to plan a trip to Orlando. We have two children that will be traveling with us (12 yrs old at the time of the trip and 14 yrs old). We have been to Disney World 4 or 5 times. My 14 year old is less than thrilled about returning to Disney (he was hoping for a cruise but the timeline does not work out this time around). Anyway, I'm trying to make this a trip that all of us would enjoy. The other times we were in Orlando, we spent the entire time at Disney so I have no idea regarding other things Orlando might offer.

I found something about IFLY wind tunnel and I thought that would be fun for my 14 year old.

Then I was looking up information about Universal Studios. We have never been there. Previously, our youngest son was not tall enough for many of the rides so we did not seriously consider that. Is this park something a teenager would like better than Disney World?

Any other suggestions for kids this age? Thanks for any help you could provide.

Magic Kingdom Park
Disney Parks & Activities, Theme Parks
Disney's Animal Kingdom
Nature & Wildlife Areas, Theme Parks, Disney Parks & Activities
Epcot
Theme Parks, Disney Parks & Activities
Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park
Water Parks, Disney Parks & Activities
Valley Stream, NY
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1. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

We sometimes do a Disney trip (on property, just disney) and sometimes do a Universal/Islands of Adventure trip (staying on property there). We just did this in September, 6 nights at the Portofino (you may prefer Hard Rock with the kids), we had our 2 girls in the their 20s with us.

We also did Seaworld and Wet and Wild. The 3 hotels on site have free shuttles to those 2 parks.

County Galway...
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2. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

Have a look at bush gardens

Yorkshire
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3. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

As she got older, our daughter moved from Disney to Universal. At 11 she was mainly a Disney fan, at 13 it was mostly Universal and at 15 it was all Universal.

south wales
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4. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

I think the 2 Universal parks are better than Disney for teenagers as the rides are much bigger in IOA and movie themed in Universal Studios. The parks are close to I Drive if you don't want to stay on site although we stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel and thoroughly enjoyed it. ( This was a one off due to a 45% discount for 6 nights making it affordable!!)

Your kids would probably enjoy Gatorland which makes a good 1/2 - 3/4 day outing.

5. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

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Altamonte Springs...
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6. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

"there is also a high speed train from Orlando to Tampa......"

I live here and know of no such train.

7. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

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Graysville...
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8. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

You could take a day and visit Cocoa Beach on the East Coast side and there is a Ron John Surf Shop with lots to buy and surf boards and boogie boards to rent. I think they might have surfing lessons as well. My boys have enjoyed Universal more than Disney since they were 6 years old.

Toronto, Canada
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9. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

A 2nd vote for both Cocoa Beach, and Busch Gardens.........

Hampton Roads
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10. Re: Planning a trip to Orlando

I want to thank all of you for the replies. There is a lot of new information for me in this thread. I did not know anything about Gatorland so we will look into that. Also, pleased to hear that some of your kids actually prefer Universal. I guess I'm just nervous planning a trip that does not center around Disney. Before Disney was always a huge hit with our family. We did not have to worry about anything else. Now that the boys are getting older, it is a bit harder to make sure that everyone has a good time. Anyway, thanks again for all of your help.....

Also, is there anyone here that has been to Busch Gardens Tampa and Busch Gardens Williamsburg? Is there a big difference between the two? Or are they about the same? We live a couple of miles from Busch Gardens Williamsburg so the boys practically live there. In fact, we were there last night for Christmas Town. lol Anyway, just wondering if is seems pretty much the same? Think I will head over to their website and check it out.

THANKS AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!