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  1. #21
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    None of the beaches at the resorts at Disney World are for swimming.

    Some resorts do have zero entry pools. And they ALL have great pools.

  2. #22

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    I think I'd be tempted to check out the new Harry Potter park. According to this blogger it's pretty fantastic.

  3. #23

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    My absolute favorite place in Orlando is Sea World. There's always the Shamu shows which are fantastic, but you can also pet small, young dolphins in this huge swimming pool type lagoon. Just sit by the side of the pool, and they come right up to you! Sea World also has the big Clydesdales. It's clean, it's fun, it isn't Disney. Now, I like Disney...I preferred Epcot but Animal Kingdom was nice too. If I had it to do again and could only choose one place-Sea World would be it.

  4. #24

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    I agree with the mid-day break. Getting away during the hottest part of the day for a swim and a nap is vital. Also, renting a stroller at the park is a good way to get around with a tired child rather than carrying them. We usually eat 1 meal at the hotel, 1 meal at the park and C-Store snacks for 1 meal. Don't do all 3 at one place!
    "awwww....shades of Janet Lynn" - Dick Button on anyone who makes more than one mistake in their program.

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    I have only stayed at the resort hotels in Paris and LA but I'm sure it's the same in FL, but I remember the characters were easily accessible at the hotels at various hours just walking around the lobby and around the pool and also some set times for pics.

    Fast passes are great and you do get some with your hotel stay, but of course not enough!

  6. #26
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    Wear comfortable shoes that you won't get blisters in. I wore a pair of really cushy sandals that I thought would be great, and ended up with MONSTER blisters on my heels and under my toes after one day. I had to pop them with a sterile needle and it really put a damper on my whole trip. I never knew blisters could be so debilitating.

    I loved Animal Kingdom. Never been there before. We used the magic hours to go early and went on the safari first thing. Saw many animals, including an adorable baby white rhino. It was really lovely.

  7. #27
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    Fast passes are great and you do get some with your hotel stay, but of course not enough!

    THIS IS NOT TRUE.

    Fast passes are availible for any guest of the park. There are no limits to the amount you can collect. Once you get one set of fast passes, you will see what time you can collect a new one. There is a limit to the amount of passes that are given out so if you arrive to late in the day, they may be all gone.

    Go early. Do more research than you are gettting here. As I said before for to www.disboards.com. You have to research Disney or you will not enjoy your stay.

    BTW in central florida you do not go near small bodies of water-Crocs live there and there is some kind of micro organism in the water that eats your brain.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by mackiecat View Post
    BTW in central florida you do not go near small bodies of water-Crocs live there and there is some kind of micro organism in the water that eats your brain.
    Garr has been to Florida many times so she probably knows that central Florida has alligators, not crocodiles and the microorganism you're talking about is an amoeba found in some freshwater lakes all over the world - it's quite rare.
    3539 and counting.

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  9. #29

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    There are a LOT of gators, though. When my husband and I used to drive "Alligator Alley" between Naples and Miami, we'd watch for them on the roadside and get really excited if we saw even a few. Today there are so many alligators that they are lying heaped on top of each other. The hunting ban can be lifted, I think, without these guys becoming extinct!

    One does need to be vigilant in some areas.

    What freaks me out is that there are reportedly 100,000 OR MORE pythons now living in south Florida, the population caused by people freeing pet snakes or by their escaping. Now, that's some serious scary stuff! It's enough to keep me out of the water. And I used to love going to Everglades City! No more airboats for me.

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ar...913751,00.html

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holley Calmes View Post
    There are a LOT of gators, though. When my husband and I used to drive "Alligator Alley" between Naples and Miami, we'd watch for them on the roadside and get really excited if we saw even a few. Today there are so many alligators that they are lying heaped on top of each other. The hunting ban can be lifted, I think, without these guys becoming extinct!
    There is a hunting season for gators but, yes, Alligator Alley, is pretty populated.
    3539 and counting.

    Slightly Wounding Banana list cont: MacMadame.

  11. #31

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    We saw a teen guy one time trying to feed a hamburger to an alligator. We drove past this scene and the immediate thought was "Darwin at work."

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    There is a hunting season for gators but, yes, Alligator Alley, is pretty populated.
    And always make sure you gas up at the last station before you travel the alley, its pretty scary to be broken down through there! Experience!
    Without fear you cannot find courage

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by MOIJTO View Post
    And always make sure you gas up at the last station before you travel the alley
    That, too. One gas station in almost a hundred miles.
    3539 and counting.

    Slightly Wounding Banana list cont: MacMadame.

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by mackiecat View Post

    BTW in central florida you do not go near small bodies of water-Crocs live there and there is some kind of micro organism in the water that eats your brain.
    As milanessa said, I go to Florida quite frequently; half my family lives down there. I visit at least once a year, and have done for over half my life. I've just never been to Disney! I've been to Seaworld, though - that's actually a fun park. And I've been to Universal.

    I'd figured the beaches listed at the Disney resorts must be fresh water, but either man-made or springs. Alligators don't like clear water. They prefer the murky stuff. People in FL do avoid lakes and some rivers re: swimming; but springs are well used by swimmers, and there are a ton of springs in FL. Cold as all get out, extremely clear, and beautiful.

    But someone else said that the beaches at Disney aren't along swimmable waters, so that's out. Pools it is.
    Use Yah Blinkah!

  15. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by GarrAarghHrumph View Post
    Alligators don't like clear water. They prefer the murky stuff. People in FL do avoid lakes and some rivers re: swimming; but springs are well used by swimmers, and there are a ton of springs in FL. Cold as all get out, extremely clear, and beautiful.
    Myth. A couple of years ago, An alligator attacked and killed a woman in clear spring water of Jupiter Springs in the Ocala National Forest. We had an extremely dry rainy season that caused the wetland to dry-out and the spring temperature to rise.

    http://www.wesh.com/news/9222370/detail.html

  16. #36
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    My 2 cents, which echo what others have said:

    Stay at Animal Kingdom Lodge in a savannah view room and spend about a half day in Animal Kingdom, doing the "animal stuff." Spend the rest of your time at the Magic Kingdom. Epcot is too spread out and, in my opinion, Hollwood Studios is lame!

    Definitely book restaurants as soon as you can. Many of the good ones are already going to be booked solid.

    Best bet: get one of the how-to-do-Disney books written (such as the Insider's Guide to Disney). They can help you figure out the best order to do things in.

  17. #37

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    OR....forget "new Florida" or "Disney Florida" and go on a really fun adventure of exploring the byroads and beaches of the "real" Florida. Still a tourist mecca, but you can find some really different and beautiful places, like Tarpon Springs. Or the Ringling Home and Museum in Sarasota. Or I mentioned Everglades City for a trip back to the 1950's Florida....and nothing is more beautiful than Sannibel/Captiva. Florida does not have to involve Disney! In fact, I prefer Florida without Disney.

    I guess I've been going there my whole life. I actually prefer the panhandle-the most beautiful beaches anywhere I've ever been. If I had money to spend on traveling right now, I'd find a panhandle beach that hadn't been hit by the oil spill literally but has definitely been hurt by tourist cancellations...and I'd go there in a heartbeat! Anywhere west of Appalachicola......

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holley Calmes View Post
    We saw a teen guy one time trying to feed a hamburger to an alligator. We drove past this scene and the immediate thought was "Darwin at work."


  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by skaternum View Post
    Epcot is too spread out and, in my opinion, Hollwood Studios is lame!
    Jumping in here! We've been to Disney World three times. Epcot is better for older kids and adults. They've added a few things for smaller kids over the years, but my kids appreciated it and liked it much better in 2008 than they did in 2000.

    Another thing about Hollywood Studios is that it seems it was built at a time when crowds were much smaller. We went at the beginning of August in 2008 and the darn place was so crowded that you could hardly walk down the streets and it took forever to get anywhere. Hollywood Studios has an awesome closing show (Fantasmic), but you have to get in line very early to make sure you get in.

    My kids love Animal Kingdom, but their hands-down favorite is Magic Kingdom. It's such classic Disney stuff.

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by GaPeach View Post
    Myth. A couple of years ago, An alligator attacked and killed a woman in clear spring water of Jupiter Springs in the Ocala National Forest. We had an extremely dry rainy season that caused the wetland to dry-out and the spring temperature to rise.

    http://www.wesh.com/news/9222370/detail.html
    I said that they prefer the murky stuff. That doesn't mean that they don't go in very cold, clear water - especially during times of stress, such as those you mentioned. Likewise, they'll also go in salt water. It's just that they prefer not to.
    Use Yah Blinkah!

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