1. Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon
The attraction opening most imminently in Orlando is Jimmy Fallon’s brand new ride – Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon. Opening on the 7th April at Universal Studios Florida, the ride will take guests on an exhilarating trip through New York in theatre-style seats with their enigmatic host, Jimmy Fallon, leading the way. The new ride will use 4D effects to create a realistic sensation of flying through New York – including the use of a pizza fragrance – we’re intrigued to see what that smells like!
To read more about this new attraction, click here.
Opens: 6th April, 2017 at Universal Studios Florida.
2. LEGOLAND Beach Retreat
If you’re travelling to Orlando this year with little ones, you might already know that the follow-up to the legendary LEGO Hotel is due to open this summer – especially if they’ve spotted how cool this hotel is going to be! LEGOLAND Beach Retreat is heaven for little ones – bright coloured themed bungalows surround a beautiful big pool and sandy play area to keep the kids occupied, while adults can hang out at the pool-side bar – perfect!
To read more about this brand-new hotel, click here.
Opens: 7th April, 2017
3. Happily Ever After night-time show
With the end of the Wishes fireworks in May this year, Disney have promised a jaw-dropping spectacular to fill its rather considerable shoes as the night-time show at Magic Kingdom. The new show will combine classic Disney storytelling with projection mapping technology, your favourite Disney characters, fireworks and music to create an unmissable new spectacular. Guests will spot references to stories such as Aladdin from Disney’s history, right up to present day hits such as Moana and Brave.
To read more about this new show, click here.
Begins: 12th May, 2017 at Magic Kingdom
4. Volcano Bay
Possibly the biggest opening of 2017 (and maybe even for the last few years!) is the opening of Volcano Bay at Universal Orlando Resort. This long-anticipated water theme park will open its doors on the 25th May, with plenty of shiny new attractions, new technologies and incredible new water park concepts that guests will not have seen before at any other water park. We’re most excited to see the looming Krakatau volcano which dominates the park, as well as to try out their virtual wait in line system, TapuTapu because, well, none of us like queuing for rides!
To read more about what to expect from this brand-new water theme park, click here.
Opens: May 25th at Universal Orlando Resort
5. The Music of Pixar LIVE A Symphony of Characters
This new show, opening on the 26th May, is for a limited-time only so make sure you catch it if you’re at Walt Disney World this summer. You’ll find it at the Theatre of the Stars at Disney’s Hollywood Studios right after the Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage show. The new show incorporates music and characters from some of your favourite Disney films, including Toy Story and Cars 3, so definitely worth making time for.
Opens: May 26th, Disney’s Hollywood Studios
6. PANDORA – World of Avatar
One of the most exciting new expansions opening in Orlando this year is PANDORA – World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Opening on the 27th May, the new land promises to be a totally immersive experience that transports guests to the blue-tinged world of Pandora…complete with banshees, floating mountains and all! Two brand-new rides add a thrill to the new area of the park while the Satu-li canteen offers a range of exciting alternative food that’s a little different to what you might find elsewhere in the park.
To read more about the new PANDORA – World of Avatar land, click here.
Opens: 27th May at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
7. Dolphin Nursery
What could be cuter than a baby bottle-nose dolphin? Absolutely nothing, that’s what! And from summer 2017, you’ll be able to get up close with the beautiful creatures and their mothers at the dolphin nursery in SeaWorld Orlando. This brand-new attraction is designed to give multi-level viewing to guests as well as give vets easier access to the dolphin calves in order to treat and care for them properly. This expansion is all part of the next generation of SeaWorld animal care education.
To learn more about SeaWorld’s latest expansions, click here.
Opens: Summer 2017
8. Electric Ocean
Another new attraction to look forward to at SeaWorld Orlando this summer: The Electric Ocean end-of day spectacle. As the sun goes down at SeaWorld Orlando, the lights and the music go up to end the day with a bang and a sparkle that will make your evening at SeaWorld memorable. Bioluminescent lighting, music and pathway entertainment really bring the whole show together.
Begins: Summer 2017
9. Kraken Virtual Reality (VR) Roller Coaster
One of the most loved rollercoasters at SeaWorld Orlando, Kraken (which by the way was also SeaWorld’s first rollercoaster!), is getting a virtual reality makeover this summer. Guests will be given the opportunity to ride the rollercoaster wearing a virtual reality headset, taking them into the dark and dangerous world of one of the ocean’s most deadly mystical creatures. Initial artist renderings of the upgrade promise to take this already exhilarating ride to another level of thrill – we can’t wait!
To hear about the VR makeover from the man who designed it, watch this exclusive interview:
Opens: Summer 2017
10. MineBlower! at FunSpot
A brand new wooden roller coaster called MineBlower! is opening at the FunSpot Kissimmee park this summer. Prepare yourself for the authentic feel of an old-school wooden rollercoaster as you tear round the tracks at speeds of up to 50mph. There's even a barrel roll to keep the thrill-factor on high! This $6 million attractions joins the park's other high-octane thrills like the Rockstar Coaster and Headrush 360.
Opens: Summer 2017
11. Fast and Furious: Supercharged
Considering the success of this ride at Universal Studios Hollywood, we knew it wouldn’t be long until Universal announced the Fast and Furious: Supercharged ride would also be pulling into Universal Orlando. Riders will be submerged into the dark underworld of underground racing for an exhilarating multi-sensory experience that will make you feel as if you’re part of the Fast family. Can’t wait? Check out some of the cars from the latest film before the ride opens, when they arrive at the parks on April 14th of this year.
12. Star Wars Land
One of the biggest single-theme land expansions in the history of Walt Disney World will take place in 2019, when the brand-new Star Wars land opens to the public. This much-anticipated new land is already one of Disney’s most popular franchise expansions, hence the early announcement to create as much hype as possible! 3 attractions and all your favourite Star Wars characters, including Chewbacca, Darth Vader and the Storm Troopers have already been lined up to make this one of the most out-of-this-world places at Disney!
To read more, click here.
13. Toy Story Land
11 acres of Toy Story fun – doesn’t that sounds amazing?! The second new land in Disney’s planned expansions, Toy Story Land, doesn’t even have an opening date yet, but is already gaining avid fans. The new land will be designed to look like Andy’s back yard (as seen from a Buzz Lightyear-sized perspective!) and will feature a slinky-dog rollercoaster and an alien spinning ride based on the aliens from THE CLAW!
To read more about what’s expected from Toy Story Land, click here.
14. Universal Nintendo partnership
Although this is the most mysterious of all the new attractions coming to Orlando, we think it has potential to be one of the biggest! Universal describe it as a ‘an entire realm filled with iconic Nintendo excitement, gameplay, heroes and villains’ including fan favourites Super Mario and Pokemon! Can you image something more colourful and immersive than a Nintendo-inspired theme park or land? We’re very excited to see where this partnership leads and, more importantly, to find out when we might be able to visit!
To read what little we do know(!), click here.
Think you've seen it all? Think again! To book tickets for your next Orlando holiday, click here!
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