Drawing in millions of visitors of annually from all over the world, Walt Disney World Resort is the biggest and most-visited recreational facility of its kind in the entire world. Contrary to widespread information that it is located in Orlando, it is actually found in Lake Buena Vista City in Orange County. Contrary to Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort was made for longer stays, rather than for one-day rendezvous. This sprawling recreational resort spans 30,080 acres and houses several leisure and recreation attractions including four them parks, two spas, 23 themed hotels, two water parks, physical fitness centers and sports facilities plus other entertainment options.
The first theme park ever built on the resort, and perhaps the most iconic is Magic Kingdom which was inaugurated on October 1, 1971. The layout and design of the park is very reminiscent of Disneyland in California. The Magic Kingdom features six themed sections namely Main Street, U.S.A (a thoroughfare showcasing architectures from different parts of the United States); Adventureland (which depicts the foreign jungles of South Pacific, Africa, South America, Middle East and Asia); Frontierland (a recreation of the American Old West); Liberty Square (inspired by an American Revolutionary town and house the Hall of Presidents and the Haunted Mansion); and Fantasyland, which, according to the developers of the theme park, are for the young at hearts who believe that their dreams will be fulfilled if they ?wish upon a star.? The centerpiece of the Magic Kingdom is the iconic and globally recognizable Cinderella Castle which is beautifully lighted at night and where some of the most spectacular fireworks displays have been done. With almost 17 million guests visiting it, it ranks one on the list of the most-visited theme parks in the world.
The second theme park that was opened in Walt Disney World Resort is Epcot which is a tribute to advancements in technology and international culture. Epcot stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow and is the third most frequented theme park on earth drawing in an estimated 11 million visitors annually. Epcot?s icon and main attraction is Spaceship Earth which showcases a 13-minute ride which takes guests on a journey through time.
Following Epcot, the third park which broke ground in Walt Disney World Resort is Disney?s Hollywood Studios which is inspired by the peak of Hollywood circa 1930 and 1940. The layout and design of the park is a lot like a real motion picture wherein structures and streets of different look and feel blend into each other. The park?s most recognizable and well-known attraction is The Sorcerer?s Hat which is a larger than life version of the magical hat featured in Fantasia. Every year, about 9.7 million guests trek to the park making it the seventh most-visited amusement park in the planet.
Bursting with wildlife is the last theme park built in Walt Disney World Resort which is Disney?s Animal Kingdom. Though it was the last, it is the biggest among the theme parks found in the recreational resort and the largest Disney theme park in the world. It was also the pioneering Disney theme park with a focus on animal preservation and conservation which was advocated by Walt Disney himself. The park features seven themed sections filled with wildlife and complemented by interactive displays and activities all geared towards educating people about wildlife preservation. Aptly, Animal Kingdom is represented by The Tree of Life ? a 145-foot tall sculpted tree with 325 animals etched on its bark.
Aside from these theme parks, Walt Disney World Resort is home to two water parks. The Typhoon Lagoon features the biggest outdoor wave pool in the planet. Its sister theme park, the Blizzard Beach, showcases some of the most exhilarating slides in the world. The centerpiece of the Blizzard Beach is Mount Gushmore, an artificial mountain and the fifth highest point in Florida.
Aside from these attractions, Walt Disney World Resort houses four 18-hole golf courses as well as catch-and-release fishing lakes. As for lodging, there is a host of lodging and accommodation facilities within the magical recreational resort from budget hotels to luxurious temporary abodes.