Orlando, Florida still stands as one of the premier tourist destinations in the United States, and shows no sign of losing its luster. In fact, tourism is on the upswing across Florida. The 112.8 million tourists that showed up last year mark the sixth consecutive record year for the state, and Orlando is one of the major reasons. Whether you’re a regular visitor to Orlando or have yet to go, 2017 stands to be one of the best years yet for the city, with a wide selection of new things to enjoy.
Theme Park Additions
Orlando’s wide array of theme parks draws in people from across the world, and naturally, there are some new highlights coming on 2017. One of the largest additions this year is coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The new Pandora – The World of AVATAR attraction is the largest expansion in the history of Animal Kingdom. Five years in the making, it is themed after the sci-fi world featured in the popular James Cameron film. Expect the signature glowing rainforests, floating mountains, and alien fauna to come to life.
Universal Orlando Resort is bringing on a new ride this year that promises to provide laughs as well as thrills. The Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon Ride is a 3-D trip across New York City, with Fallon as your guide through the streets and skies. Fallon himself compared it to the popular Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios.
If you want to cool off, Orlando’s latest water park, Universal’s Volcano Bay, may be worth visiting. Opening in June, the signature attraction is the towering fire and water volcano. This overlooks the whole park, with water slides, lazy rivers, and more.
Soccer fans will be happy to hear that the new 25,500-seat Multipurpose Soccer Stadium, home to the Orlando City Lions and Orlando Pride soccer teams, is opening up shop in time for this year’s MLS season. In addition, the United States Tennis Association’s new headquarters facility opened up this year, with over 100 courts.
If you want to get in on the fun, travel to Top Golf Orlando, opening up in the fall. Not only can you practice your swing in over 100 climate-controlled bays, but new tech can track your accuracy and distance for each shot. Not to be missed is Andretti Indoor Karting & Games. This one-stop-shop for fun includes 120 arcade games, a rock wall, zip line, and electric superkarts on a two –level track.
Along with all these great activities to enjoy, there are also a few new major accommodations opening up in Orlando. One of these is the 54-room boutique property The Delaney Hotel. The Delaney brings high-tech convenience to your stay. Use innovations like remote check-in, in-room digital tablet-based concierge services and smart phone room keys. Being right in the middle of downtown makes it conveniently close to a lot of great attractions.
For a more laid-back take on things, late 2017 brings the Margaritaville Resort Orlando. This new resort has 187 rooms, 1,000 Margaritaville-themed vacation homes and 300 timeshare units. Themed after the classic relaxed Margaritaville lifestyle, this resort is a vacation destination in and of itself. On top of the rooms, it has an entire dining and entertainment district and 12-acre water park, all along the Orlando Waterfront.
Last Minute Tips
While Orlando is an appealing vacation destination for 2017, there are a few things you may want to keep in mind. For one, if you are looking to save money, you want to try and book your stay in the March to May area. Rooms are generally cheaper than the summer and winter peak seasons. The weather is also pleasant and crowds are smaller. September to mid-November is a great time as well. Just keep an eye out for holidays and breaks where prices may go up.
In addition, keep an eye out for discounts and travel packages when you are setting things up. In many cases, the items you get for a travel bundle come to a greater value together than separately. Seek out a bundle service to help with the planning for your Orlando Vacation – Westgate Reservations is such an example. Using these tips will ensure you get to see the best of what Orlando has to offer this year. This applies to past, present, and future highlights.