By Kimberly Masimore
Usually I don’t need a reason to visit Walt Disney World. The fact that I’m going to the most magical place on earth is usually reason enough. But in case you are trying to convince your spouse, mother, sister, brother, or yourself that you really need to go on a trip to Walt Disney World next year, here are 16 reasons to visit in 2016.
1. Disney Springs is amazing. All the new construction is about done and that means the shopping, entertainment, and dining venues will have doubled in number. Looking for something to do outside of the parks for a day? This will be your place. There are plenty of amazing, new restaurants already to gain your energy for all of that shopping!
2. Frozen Ever After opened in the Spring of 2016. It’s pretty amazing. It took the place of Maelstrom in the Norway Pavilion. Some people are “over” the whole Frozen fever, but you have to admit it is kind of exciting to see exactly how they plan to transform the area. You can see Elsa, Anna and some of the other Frozen characters around the corner.
Frozen Ever After is OPEN! – Photo by Wayne Wood
3. Rivers of Light, a spectacular water show, is expected to debut at Disney’s Animal Kingdom sometime in 2016. It’s been delayed but it’s still expected to start sometime this fall. This will be the first nighttime show at Animal Kingdom and feature live music, floating lanterns, and more. It’s not to be missed!
4. The Kilimanjaro Safaris. Will begin having tours after sunset starting in the spring. How neat will it be to see the animals on the savanna as the sun is setting? In addition, a new restaurant that was inspired by the places Imagineers visited while researching for the park is also set to open this spring.
5. The New Star Wars attractions in Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Star Wars Weekends are gone, but Star Wars is taking center stage every day with some new attractions. You can visit Chewbacca, Darth Vader, Jawa, and check out neat props from the movie at Star Wars Launch By. Children ages 4-12 can participate in the updated Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple. More Star Wars experiences include Watto’s Grotto, Star Wars: Path of the Jedi, and Symphony in the Stars: A Galactic Spectacular fireworks show.
6. The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen, a new Jungle Cruise themed restaurant, just opened in December 2015 in Adventureland at the Magic Kingdom.
The new Skipper Canteen – Photo by Brett Svenson
7. There’s no better time to visit than now. Disney World is constantly expanding and changing and if you are waiting for something special (like Avatar) to be complete, you will always be waiting for the next best thing to come to Disney World because there is always something just around the corner.
8. The third track for Toy Story Mania is open and lines are much shorter.
9. The Polynesian Village Resort construction will finally be over. It’s hard to really know how beautiful and amazing the resort is with all of the construction going on since 2014. If you have been aching to stay in paradise, 2016 is your year.
The new lobby at the Polynesian Village Resort – Photo by Andy Sanchez
10. A third theater will be added to Soarin’ in EPCOT. This will open up more FastPass+ times and alleviate some of the long wait. There will also be a new film set to debut called “Soarin’ Around the World.” Unfortunately, for the first part of 2016 Soarin’ will be closed for the transformation. It is expected to reopen in the summer of 2016.
11. Special occasions don’t happen all of the time, and when they do, you want to celebrate them in a way you will never forget. Whether it is a birthday milestone, graduation, anniversary, or a goal you have met such as weight loss, beating cancer, or getting your black belt in karate – there is no better place to celebrate than at Disney World.
12. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto is open and one of the coolest places on the planet. Even though this opened in 2015, hopefully the new excitement will have worn off a bit so it is easier to get in to this tiny but fun interactive lounge.
Trader Sams is really cool – Photo by Andy Sanchez
13. There are great annual events such as Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. If you haven’t taken part in one of these exciting special events, you might want to go in 2016.
14. You need to go in 2016 because of the magical feeling you get from being at Disney World. Anyone who has ever visited knows the feeling when you walk through the gates and see Cinderella Castle for the first or fiftieth time. It’s the feeling of pure happiness. Your body will thank you.
15. You never know when your favorite attraction might go bye-bye. Last year I skipped The Magic of Disney Animation group animation lesson. I decided to do something else. “I’ll go next time.” I said. Now there will be no “next time.”
The Magic of Disney Animation has been replaced by Launch Bay – Photo by Cliff Wang
16. Planning a vacation for 2016 will give you a great reason to use your new WDW Magazine calendar – with event planning stickers!
So there you have it, 16 reasons to visit Walt Disney World in 2016. What reason do you have for visiting? Don’t wait a moment longer. Contact our friends at Destinations to Travel and let them help you begin planning the vacation of a lifetime today!
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