Amazing Disney Tech

Walt Disney was fascinated by futuristic technology so it’s no surprise that Disney parks are filled with amazing technological advancements.  Here are some really cool techy things you can find at the Walt Disney World Resort!

1.  Magic Bands

Unless you’ve been living under a rock,  you probably already know about Magic Bands.  These waterproof bracelets have an RFID chip embedded inside that contain information about you.  You can use these bands to gain access to the parks (with prepaid admission), make purchases in the Disney shops, and purchase food with your dining credits.  You also use it in conjunction with FastPass+ so you aren’t waiting in lots of long lines for attractions.  This new tech has been in place for about 2 years now and seems to be reinventing how guests enjoy the parks.

2.  TV…in the mirror?

Did you know that in the villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian you can watch television while you take a bath?  That’s right, there’s a TV in the mirror.  When the set is off, it just looks like a regular bathroom mirror, but turn it on and there’s Mickey Mouse Clubhouse in the lower corner!  Amazing!

3.  Be Our Guest

If you’ve had the chance to eat at Be Our Guest restaurant in Magic Kingdom then you’ve already seen this one in action.  In this restaurant, you place your order either ahead of time online or at the cashier, then you sit wherever you like within the building.  Your server uses a device similar to a smart phone to locate you via your Magic Band.  Then they deliver your food to you on a rolling tray.  Pretty neat, huh?

4.  My Disney Experience

If you know about Magic Bands then you know about the My Disney Experience app.  Before you even leave home, you can use the app to schedule FastPass+ selections, set up dining reservations, even purchase tickets.  You can find park maps, park hours, character meet and greet locations, even use it while you’re in the park to find the nearest restroom!

What’s your favorite Disney tech?

Podcast Episode 49: Winning Over The Reluctant Disney Fan

Is there someone in your life you’re dying to bring to Disney but they just aren’t as enthusiastic about it as you are?  Our episode this week gives you some great ideas on how you can get them excited about a Disney vacation!  We cover dining, where to stay, what time of year to go, and even special events!

Happy listening!

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What To Do If You Get Sick At Disney

You’ve been planning that perfect Disney vacation for months.  You’ve planned your resort, your park days, where you’re going to eat, which attractions to see.  Then illness throws a wrench into your perfect plan.  No one plans to be ill, but it happens.  Here’s what you can do to salvage that plan and make sure you and your kids feel your best so you can enjoy all that Disney has to offer.

1.  Make sure to keep hydrated.

Florida sun and heat can be brutal so that’s why it’s important to make sure you stay hydrated while visiting the parks.  Bringing your own water and sports drinks in the parks is totally okay!  You can also get free cups of ice water from any Disney restaurant or snack location.  You can also visit the first aid station in any of the parks for some free water and air conditioning.

2.  Wash your hands

You’re going to be touching all sorts of surfaces at Disney and you don’t want to pick up any germs that could make you sick.  Wash your hands often!  You might even want to carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer, just to be safe.

3.  Get a house call

If you do happen to fall ill, have no fear.  There are several clinics around the Orlando area that will send a doctor straight to your resort.  One of them is The Medical Concierge.  They offer lots of in-room services, like x-rays and ultrasounds.  They also offer several different types of doctors like pediatricians, dentists, and OB/GYNs.  They also will bill your insurance for services rendered.  This company also offers a walk-in urgent care clinic if you’d rather be seen there instead.

4. Pick up some over-the-counter relief

If you’re not sick enough for the doctor but you need some medicinal relief, there are many pharmacies around the Disney area, some of them even deliver!  Give Turner Drugs a try.  They offer all types of over-the-counter medicine, plus medical rentals, diapers, and self-care products.

5.  Buy the travel insurance

Illness and injury is unfortunate but you can make sure you’re always protected by purchasing the travel insurance when you book your trip.  The policy covers lots of unforseen circumstances and you don’t want to be left holding the bill for a vacation you didn’t enjoy when something unfortunate happens.  The policy Disney offers is $77.50 per adult (children are automatically covered with the paid adults) so it’s worth the money to make sure you’re covered.  Hopefully, you’ll never need it but the peace of mind is worth the cost.

Have you ever been ill at Disney?  How did you handle it?

Disney Parks and Disney Movies- Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios

If you are new to Disney parks you might not know that many of the attractions in the Disney parks are based on Disney films. If you want to familiarize yourself with some of the movies that have tie-ins at Walt Disney World this is a good place to start. These are a mix of animated and live action. If you don’t own these I highly suggest checking out Netflix, your local library, movie store or To get us started we will check out Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.


Animal Kingdom:
It’s Tough to be a Bug- A Bug’s Life This 3D film and live action show is based on this film.

Finding Nemo the Musical- Finding Nemo This is a great stand-alone show which is a condensed version of the film but with music and puppetry.

Festival of the Lion King- The Lion King This show is condensed version of the film but with acrobatics, puppetry.

Avatar– Technically there isn’t anything open just yet but soon there will be Avatarland and you will want to check out this film.


Hollywood Studios:
Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular- Indiana Jones This series is sure to please the older kids and adults.

For the First Time in Forever: Frozen Sing Along and Frozen Summer Fun- Frozen I supposed if you are living under a rock and haven’t see this yet you better remedy.

Beauty and the Beast: Live on Stage- Beauty and the Beast A household staple you have probably seen if you have a little girl but you don’t need to see the film to like the stage show.

Voyage of The Little Mermaid- The Little Mermaid same as the above, this stage show is a condensed version of the movie.

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids No you don’t have to see this film to enjoy playing here but it might make more sense! Plus it is a pretty cute movie.

Toy Story Midway Mania- Toy Story A great standalone attraction but there are also character meets nearby, but if you or your kids haven’t been introduced to Woody and Buzz you are missing out.

Star Tours and Jedi Training Academy- Star Wars I highly suggest you start with Episodes IV-VI and then I-III but you will know that characters better.

Tower of Terror- The Twilight Zone This queue and attraction are filled with references to this classic TV show if you like to be in the know this is a good place to start.


This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it should be enough to get you started.

Walt Disney World Refurbishment May 2015

Here is your monthly updated list of refurbishments for Walt Disney World.  As always it is subject to change.

Magic Kingdom
Pirates of the Caribbean June 8 – Sep 25, 2015

Jungle Cruise- Apr 13 – May 8, 2015

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad- Apr 27 – 30, 2015

Liberty Square Riverboat- Aug- 4-10, 2015

Dream Along with Mickey- July 19 – Aug 22, 2015

Liberty Tree Tavern- Jul 6 – Nov 19, 2015

Hollywood Studios
Lights, Motors, Action- Apr 20 – Apr 24, 2015

Voyage of the Little Mermaid- Sep 7 – Sep 10, 2015

Animal Kingdom
Flame Tree BBQ- Jan 5 – Apr 22, 2015

Creature Comforts- Jan 5 – June 14, 2015

Monorail March 10- Summer 2015 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11:30am-6pm

The Walt Disney World® Resort Monorail System will undergo refurbishment that will impact the Express monorail beam, which runs between the Ticket & Transportation Center and the Magic Kingdom. The Resort beam will continue to run during downtimes. Guests arriving at the Ticket & Transportation Center during downtimes will be directed to the ferry boats.

Contemporary Feature Pool Sep 8-10, 2015

Beach Club Resort- Guest Room Renovations-Guests will not be accommodated in the affected areas but it is possible that some noise could travel while work is in progress (between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily). Oct 13, 2014 – Aug 22, 2015

Polynesian Village Resort- General Construction through early 2016

East Pool construction-late spring through early 2016

Disney’s Swan Hotel- Guest Room Renovations- Work is scheduled to take place between 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. daily. No guests will be accommodated in the renovation area as to minimize impact on the guest experience. Aug. 20, 2014 – TBD

Disney News Round-Up April 2015

Here is the latest Disney news round-up!

Captain Eo is leaving again to make way for an exclusive sneak peek at the new Tomorrowland film starring George Clooney. This will take place in the Imagination Pavilion from April 18- May 24th.

Brand new Dooney and Bourke handbags coming April 25. And boy are they ever adorable. Of the two I am loving the Beach themed bag!

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If you are more interested in some Disneyland themed Dooney and Bourke bags there are also some new ones for the Diamond Celebration!

A fatal accident was reported at the Richard Petty Driving Experience outside of the Magic Kingdom on April 12, 2015. A 36 year old male passenger was pronounced dead at the scene and the driver was taken to the hospital. Richard Petty Driving Experience is slated to close on August 8th.

According to a report from WDW News Today, using Selfie Sticks while on attractions at Walt Disney World has been banned. This use of these have gotten very popular so it is unsurprising that Disney has decided to ban the use of them for the safety of everyone on an attraction.

Tickets for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are now on sale. If you are planning to go it is a great idea to purchase in advance. Not only do they sell out but tickets are also more expensive at the gate.

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Additionally, Night of Joy tickets are also now for sale. This hard ticket even takes place on September 11 and 12, 2015 in the Magic Kingdom. Night of Joy is two nights of Christian music and family fun from 7pm-1am and features these performers

September 11, 2015

  • TobyMac
  • MercyME
  • Jeremy Camp
  • Colton Dixon
  • Big Daddy Weave
  • Francesca Battistelli
  • Rend Collective
  • I Am They
  • Josh Wilson

September 12, 2015

  • Skillet
  • Lecrae
  • For King & Country
  • Mandisa
  • Matt Maher
  • Jamie Grace
  • 7eventh Time Down
  • Veridia

The Boathouse restaurant at Disney Springs (Downtown Disney) will be opening on April 12, 2015 but reservations are now available! The menu looks pretty delicious, especially if you like seafood!

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As always things change quickly so be sure to check back for more news!

Podcast Episode 48: Our Perfect Disney Days

Have you ever thought about what would happen on your perfect Disney day?  We have and in this episode we tell you all about them!  Find out where we would stay, what attractions we would see and do, and most importantly, where we would eat!  Listen through to the end where we give you some tips on how to make your own perfect Disney day!

Happy listening

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Restaurant Review-Liberty Tree Tavern

Last spring my family and my sister’s family ate lunch at Liberty Tree Tavern in the Magic Kingdom. It was a great break from the heat in a relaxing atmosphere. Located in Liberty Square, this table service restaurant is a Colonial-style inn with New England inspired food. You can make reservations at 180 days prior to arrival and they are highly recommended.

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We arrived just before our reservation and I checked in our party, when you do they ask for your home state. The only downside to the host or hostess calling out “the Fosters from Michigan” was that the place was pretty busy and the doors were open which meant that it was hard to hear who they were calling.


We were seated quickly around a large table since our party was for 8. Our waitress brought our drinks and the kids were entertained by the activity booklet menus.

I ordered the Angus Chuck Cheeseburger (topped with your choice of Bacon and Cheddar or Mushrooms and Provolone served with fresh Fruit or Tavern Fries)- $15.99, my husband ordered the Colony Salad with Grilled Chicken (featuring Ocean Spray® Craisins® BRAND with Washington Apples, Sweet Pecans, Applewood-smoked Cheddar, and Craisins® Dried Cranberries tossed with Field Greens in a Honey-Shallot Vinaigrette)- $14.99, and our daughter ordered the Macaroni & Cheese that came with a drink and dessert- $8.59

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I tried both of the entrees (my husband is so nice) and I think they are both great choices. On a hot day the salad would be light and filling without weighing you down. The burger was great as well, not a typical boring burger, this had some real flavor to it. Plus it is hard to go wrong with a cheese burger if you are in the mood plus it is really filling. The only thing that would have made the experience better is a beer to wash it down with. I didn’t try the macaroni and cheese but it is pretty standard kid fare at Disney and she didn’t complain.

For dessert we split the Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake and our daughter got ice cream to go. This was a huge hit with us. I love toffee so it was a no-brainer as well as what this restaurant is known for.  I would very much order this again!


We had no issue with the service either, our waitress was prompt, efficient and friendly. We had plenty of refills on our iced tea and water as well as juice for the kids.  Our food arrived at the correct temperature and all at the same time, which the kid’s meals being delivered before the adults. As a parent, I find this extremely nice since kids don’t have the greatest patience when they are hungry.

Bottom line: we would go back! I’d love to try it for dinner and have a Thanksgiving meal without all the work of making it. Also my husband is a huge fan of Thanksgiving foods so I think this would be a win for dinner as well.

Guest Blogger: Chris Gardiner’s DCL Excursion review – Atlantis Aquaventure, Nassau


Last July, I went on my first Disney Cruise with my two tween sons and my two best friends. There were many decisions and choices to make and excursions were no exception! We did the 4-night cruise on the Disney Dream with a stop in Nassau, Bahamas.  After reviewing all of the excursion choices, my boys said that they really wanted to see Atlantis (probably based on all of the TV commercials they had seen is my guess) and so the decision was made.  We signed up for the “Atlantis Aquaventure” and all were excited for the day.  The 4-6 hour excursion included transportation to and from Atlantis, passes to use their water park, a tour of the property, and lunch.

The morning we arrived in Nassau, all who had signed up for this excursion met in the IMG_0003 (1)
Walt Disney Theater.  This is where they checked us in and gave us our ‘admission bracelets’ and lunch vouchers.  From there we disembarked the Dream and walked through the port till we got to a series of buses, which is where we waited to take the bus to Atlantis.  One thing to note is that there was quite a bit of walking involved with this excursion – so I would recommend wearing sneakers or comfortable swim shoes.

When we arrived at Atlantis, we were met by a tour guide and given an ‘orientation tour’ of the resort as we walked to the ‘Aquaventure’ water park.  I must say that the resort is extremely large but was truly beautiful!  We walked through the huge lobby of the Royal Towers (which is a site to behold in itself), through the hotel grounds and various marine exhibits and over to the water park.  The water park is the best I have ever been to.  It is 141 acres in size and features state of the art water slides, river rapids, waterfalls and IMG_0005pools.  Our personal favorite in which we spent most of our time was their ‘Aquaventure river’ that went around the entire water park.  Unlike ‘Typhoon Lagoon’s ‘lazy river’, this one at Atlantis actually uses special escalators and waves to transport you around it.  It was a great way to spend a good deal of the day and kept us nice and cool in the hot July sun!  Traveling in the ‘Aquaventure river’ is also a great way to see the entire water park and figure out where you want to explore next.

After we spent a good deal of time in the lazy river and exploring some of the water slides we got hungry and decided it was time for lunch.  The lunch vouchers we were given were good for any one of the quick service restaurants that were located around the water park.  The food was pretty standard fare (burgers, wraps, pizza and salads) but it hit the spot.  One thing I did notice is that there was not a lot of tables or seating for the quick service restaurants; but, I assume that most people get their food and go back to their beach chairs.

When we were done with lunch we hit the water park again. We ended up spending some more time on the Aquaventure river and then the (somewhat) famous water slides that go through the shark tank!  The wait times were not very long for the water slides, in my opinion, and there were so many of them it spaced everyone out evenly.


Once we were thoroughly waterlogged, we decided we would check out the ‘ruins’ of Atlantis called “The Dig” before heading back to catch the bus. Buses left every half hour back to the port, which was nice, because it really did allow you to spend as much time as you wanted at Atlantis and gave you some flexibility. “The Dig” was an amazing themed walk-through labyrinth of sea life in large viewing windows.  The added benefit is that it was cool and these areas were air conditioned which made for a welcome relief from the hot sun.  The marine life and presentation was truly wonderful and very extensive.

As we made our way out of “The Dig” we walked back through the lobby of the Royal Towers and rested a little in the lobby, taking in all of the grand architecture and design.  We then headed back to the bus, where we were brought back to the port, and boarded the Dream again.

Atlantis is so large that we could go there again for another excursion and probably not doIMG_0007 the same things twice.  There are actually many Atlantis excursions to choose from.  So if you are not a big water park fan you can book the “Discover Atlantis Tour” and basically walk around and look at the marine exhibits, shop, play at the casino and eat.  There are also Atlantis excursions that feature Dolphin interactions at their Dolphin Cay, snorkeling and golf options as well.

In my opinion the Atlantis excursion was well worth the money –especially if you have tweens, teens or older kids. The orientation tour at the beginning was good for first timers to the resort but a bit long – if I booked another Nassau excursion I would probably bypass the tour.

Hands down though, the best part of the day was being able to walk back onto the Disney Dream (we were greeted at the port with ice cold lemon water and frozen facecloths to wipe our faces with – heaven after a day in the hot sun!).

Have you been to Atlantis? What excursions have you done with DCL and what did you like best?

Top 5 Places to Get Coffee in Walt Disney World


I don’t know about you, but I’m a coffee addict.  I need a daily fix of my glorious dark roasted fuel before I can handle the day, and being on vacation at Disney is no exception. In case you’re the same way, I’m listing my Top 5 places to get coffee at WDW.

1.  Kona Cafe

This restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort has authentic Hawaiian coffee beans that are ground and then brewed in a French Press pot.  This is for folks who take their coffee seriously (like me).

2.  Starbucks at the Main Street Bakery

Located right there as you come in the gate, you can’t get a much more central location.  They have all your ‘Bux faves as well as the adorable mug you see up top.

3. Sunshine Tree Terrace

Not only can you get a Dole Whip here, you can also pick up an Iced Coffee Float.  Your choice of flavored coffee poured right over some creamy vanilla soft serve.  Cool down and get your caffeine fix simultaneously.  I do love efficiency!

4.  La Cava del Tequila

If you like your coffee tipsy, this is for you.  You can get a Coffee Mezcal Margarita.  You read right…a coffee margarita.  This combines two of my favorite drinks.  How can this go wrong?

5.  Writers Stop

This hidden gem is nestled between Sci-Fi Dine In and the Streets of America and is not usually very busy.  Pop in for a cappuccino and a cookie and get off your feet for a few.

What’s your favorite coffee stop in The World?  Leave a comment and let us know!