Orlando is probably one of the best family holidays you will ever go on, what surprises some people is that it is also fantastic for couples!
Having been there many many times as a child, with my husband and also as a parent with kids and I can say it is a destination you will never tire of.
In fact if you manage to take in all the theme parks in Orlando you will definitely need another holiday to recover.
Orlando the theme park capital of the world with great year round weather, enough Theme Parks to fill a lifetime and shopping galore, an Orlando holiday is sure to be an amazing experience.
Depending on how much time you have you really need to plan your stay. If you are travelling with young kids, there are a few musts.
Disney and Universal Studios will be the top of your list regardless of whether it's tots or teens you are travelling with.
The Magic Kingdom in Disney, as its name suggests is magical! There are more rides for younger children here and they can meet their favourite Disney characters. They have daily parades too which are fantastic for adults and children to watch.
If you can let them stay up late, the firework shows are well worth it. Try not to go to Disney on your first day because the kids will probably be too tired to appreciate it and will inevitably fade before the fireworks begin.
My favourite is Universal though, they have two parks, Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. The simulator rides are amazing and the technology blew me away.
If rollercoasters are your thing, there are plenty to test all levels of braveness and with the water rides in Islands of Adventure you will have no problem cooling down great down.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter was the icing on the cake for me. The attention to detail in Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley not to mention the two simulator rides and the Hogwarts Express – as the American’s like to say were ‘awesome’!
Beside Universal Studios there is City Walk. This is a huge area with bars and restaurants and a few shops too. I was genuinely surprised at the quality of the food here and throughout the park in general.
There are plenty of night clubs too if that’s your scene. Dare I say it but I liked the Karaoke bar- Rising Star, it’s not like the tacky ones you find abroad, you sing with a live band and backing singers – the talent is really good.
Remember if you are planning on drinking you must bring ID with you, even if you think you couldn’t possibly be asked, there were people aged over 50 refused alcohol because they had no Identification with them, so don’t say you haven’t been warned!
International Drive is one of the most popular places to stay for the Irish holidaymaker. It is one of Orlando's most lively and dynamic areas and is situated right in the middle of the world's most famous theme parks and attractions.
Last but not least – the shopping! The Florida Mall is a like a traditional shopping centre with all the typical high street stores, if on the other hand you are looking for a bargain then head for the Premium Outlets, like the name suggests, it’s mainly designer shops at discount prices. Make sure you register at the information kiosk before you start.
You need to pay $5 for a discount booklet, it will save you a lot more in each shop, a massive 20% off the already discounted bags in the Michael Kors outlet alone! Remember to purchase an extra suit case on your plane ticket for your return journey, or better still pack light on your outbound journey and then you will just have to go shopping when you get there!
Don't forget that Florida has some of the worlds most beautiful beaches and you are never too far from a laze on some golden sand. If you are completely exhausted from the hustle and bustle of Orlando let us organise a few days R & R in either St Petersburg or Clearwater Beach.
Our biggest tip when traveling to Orlando is to purchase your attraction tickets here before you go. We guarantee that you will not pay less locally when you buy your tickets from us, in fact we offer you huge savings by giving you multipark tickets.
We will give you complementary Fast Pass for Disney and we will also give you Free Memory Maker worth $169 when purchasing your Disney tickets with us which offers a fantastic saving allowing you to take home all your holiday memories for free. Mention this ad to get yours upon booking.
If you feel like Orlando is for you we have some great offers starting at €558pp based on two adults and two children for seven nights staying on International Drive for departure in May.
Prices correct at time of going to print.
Please call in and let us take care of your magical trip of a lifetime!
Emma Mc Hugh
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