Summer is one of the busiest times of year for travel, especially in Orlando. The perfect storm of kids not having school and the city being full of theme parks makes it an obvious vacation destination. However, summer in Florida also means you’re going to get HOT! Average temperatures in Orlando can reach way up into the 90 degree range, which can be unbearable when planning to spend the whole day exploring the attractions. Luckily, there are plenty of easy ways to beat the heat at Disney World. Keep reading to find the best remedies!
Grab An Ice Cold Sweet Treat
Each Disney World park has tons of dining locations with one-of-a-kind menus that reflect the themes of the areas they are located in around the parks. Trying a unique refreshing snack is not only a great way to beat the afternoon heat, but another way to get the full Disney experience.
Magic Kingdom is home to the most beloved Disney treat, the Dole Whip. Found at Aloha Isle in Adventureland, the Dole Whip is a frozen soft serve blend of pineapple, vanilla, or swirled flavors.
In Pandora – The World of Avatar you can experience an out of this world frozen concoction called the Night Blossom, which is layers of frozen apple and desert pear limeade topped with passion fruit boba. Night Blossoms are sold at Pongu Pongu at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Epcot‘s World Showcase offers an international adventure of flavors, but one of the most refreshing treats can be found in the Japan pavilion at Kabuki Cafe. Kakigori, or Japanese shaved ice, comes in rainbow, strawberry, melon, cherry and tangerine flavors. It can be ordered plain or with a sweet milk topping.
At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you can cool off with an old fashioned ice cream treat from Hollywood Scoops. Choose from chocolate, orange sherbet, cookies n’ cream, butter pecan, vanilla, strawberry, mint chocolate chip, or fat-free/no sugar vanilla served in a cup, cone or cookie sandwich.
Rides & Attractions with a Splash
In the afternoons when it’s peak heat for the day and you’ve been wandering the parks in the sun all morning long, it may feel like nothing will cool you off quite like a huge splash. Luckily, Disney World has a few attractions with guaranteed splash.
Magic Kingdom has splash opportunities for guests of all ages. Little ones can beat the heat at the Casey junior Splash and Soak Station located in Storybook Circus. The Dumbo-inspired water play zone features water fountains, a train that routinely lets off “steam”, and circus animals that squirt water unexpectedly. For the big kids of all ages, the ride to hit when you need a quick cool off is Splash Mountain in Frontierland. The log flume ride inspired by Disney’s Song of the South animated film takes riders through the bayou singing along with familiar characters like Br’er Bear, Br’er fox, and Br’er Rabbit before flying down a five story waterfall. There’s no question you’ll get wet on this classic ride, the attraction features 950,000 gallons of water!
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Kali River Rapids is a wild whitewater adventure that will without a doubt drench you. From the beginning of the rip roaring ride you’ll feel a strong river mist as your raft heads up a 900 foot hill. Once you’ve reached the top, you’ll skim across a bubbling geyser at the start of the descent back down the mountain along a wild current that sloshes the raft back and forth before falling down a 20 foot slope that is guaranteed to drench you. If the rushing waters aren’t enough, you’re also pretty likely to get hit with even more water by guests stops at elephant sprayers above the ride.
Take a Break Inside to Watch a Show
Magic Kingdom has several indoor theaters with various shows running frequently throughout the day. In Frontierland guests can file into Grizzly Hall for a 16 minute musical revue called the Country Bear Jamboree, starring 18 audio animatronic bears performing classic and original tunes during the comedic hoedown. In Liberty Square, a 700 seat theater modeled after Philadelphia’s Independence Hall is the venue for The Hall of Presidents. The show tells the story of America and its historic leaders with the help of projection screens and 44 audio animatronic Presidents who retell infamous tales like the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, The American Revolution, The Civil War, and the Gettysburg Address. There are two indoor shows in Tomorrowland that provide an entertaining place to take a break from the heat. At Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor you can head into at 400 seat comedy club for an interactive show that runs on audience participation, using laughs to power the city. Text your best jokes to a special number for a chance to be featured on the big screen! Also in Tomorrowland is Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress, housed in a revolving theater. The 21 minutes audio animatronics show depicts 100 years of progress through the story of four generations of a family. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room provides an air conditioned refuge in Adventureland. The 10 minute lively musical show is a celebration of tropical birds, flowers, and Tiki Gods. The ceremonial house theater will make you feel like you’ve traveled all the way to Polynesia!
There are three indoor shows at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. In the park’s Africa section, you can enjoy a performance of Festival of the Lion King, similar to the original Broadway production! The 30 minute spectacular retelling of The Lion King features giant puppets, stilt walkers, acrobatics, along with a soundtrack of familiar songs like Hakuna Matata, Can You Feel the Love Tonight, I Just Can’t Wait to Be King, and more! In DinoLand U.S.A., Finding Nemo comes to life in a 40 minute stage show called Finding Nemo – The Musical. Vibrant sets, huge puppets, and fun original music takes guests on Marlin’s journey through the ocean to find his son. Located inside the park’s centerpiece Tree of Life, you can catch a viewing of It’s Tough To Be A Bug! The show has both live performers and 4D elements, making it a one-of-a-kind show. While learning about bug survival techniques like a stink bug’s “defense” smell and harmless acid sprays, swarms of hornets, spiders and evil grasshoppers send the theater into a frenzy complete with rumbling audience seats.
Epcot‘s World Showcase is largely made up of theaters showing films and shows that teach parkgoers about the countries they represent. In the America pavilion, The American Adventure is a 30 minute historical show hosted by Ben Franklin and Mark Twain. More than 30 audio animatronic characters, film, and music are used to depict major moments of American history like the landing of the Mayflower, the Boston Tea Party, the winter at Valley Forge, the Civil War, the Great Depression, and other key events. In Canada, Martin Short narrates a 14 minute CircleVision 360 film called O Canada! The panoramic movie takes viewers on a journey through Canada with stops at Horseshoe Falls, the Toronto Film Fest, and the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick. Other films in the World Showcase include Impressions de France and Reflections of China. Over in Future World you can take a break inside the Magic Eye Theater for the Disney & Pixar Short Film Festival, a 3D showing of three Disney/Pixar short films, or at Turtle Talk with Crush inside The Seas with Nemo & Friends. The 15 minute Q&A session with Crush the Turtle covers tons of topics from marine biology to his favorite foods or whatever else you’d like to know!
What Disney’s Hollywood Studios lacks in water rides it certainly makes up for in entertainment, with five different shows in indoor theaters around the park. In Animation Courtyard, Disney Junior favorites come to life during Disney Junior – Live on Stage! Preschool friends like Jake & The Neverland Pirates, Doc McStuffins, Mickey and Minnie, and Princess Sofia hit the stage to solve their problems by working together. The Voyage of the Little Mermaid, also in Animation Courtyard, is a 17 minute live puppet show that recreates the movie’s most memorable scenes with live performers, huge colorful puppets, special effects, and select songs from the film soundtrack like Part of Your World and Under the Sea. Over on Grand Avenue you can catch a showing of Muppet*Vision 3D, a hilarious glimpse behind the scenes at a Muppets production complete with theatrical disasters, musical numbers, and other antics that can be expected when The Muppets are around. Anna, Elsa, and Kristoff retell the story of Frozen live onstage at the Frozen Sing-A-Long Celebration in Echo Lake. The Queen of Arendelle and friends perform the most popular songs from the movie, including Let It Go. In addition to all the live shows, you can catch a 15 minute preview of an upcoming Disney feature film at Walt Disney Presents. If there isn’t an upcoming movie preview showing you can enjoy Walt Disney: One Man’s Dream, a short film about the life of Walt Disney hosted by Julie Andrews that features rare audio and video footage of the man behind the mouse.