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About Our Agent Bloggers

All Agents are College of Disney Knowledge graduates, with some also holding additional specialties like:   Accredited Cruise Counselor, Universal Specialist, Sandals & Beaches Specialist, as well as other destination specialties.   Our Agents are experienced travelers.  If your specific agent hasn’t experienced “it”, there is someone in the Agency that has; so you have access to first-hand, experienced advice.  That’s how we can provide you this experiential based travel planning service!  We are an entire Team working together!

Our Agents will ALWAYS, without fail, no exceptions – tell you the truth and do what they say.

Trained. Traveled. Trusted.  It’s Who We Are.

 

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Star Wars Day at Sea on Disney Cruise Line

Posted by on 9:35 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

Star Wars Day at Sea on Disney Cruise Line

Amy Baranek
12.11.18

My family and I were lucky enough to embark on our first Disney family cruise during spring break, and how great for this Star Wars loving family that we were able to incorporate a themed cruise with a day devoted entirely to Star Wars!

A few quick notes for anyone wondering how this works: Currently, Star Wars themed cruises are offered select dates January-March on the Disney Fantasy. These are all 7-night cruises which rotate with one week being an Eastern Caribbean and one a Western. You get all the same enjoyments of a regular cruise, including Pirate Night at Sea, BUT on one of your sea days you have a day completely devoted to Star Wars! When you first board the ship and enter into the lobby, you are reminded that you are on a Star Wars cruise with a giant Star Wars Day at sea sign that you can stop and have your picture taken at, however, do know that this will be here the entire boat ride, so if you would like to go explore the ship, you can stop by anytime during your cruise and have your family’s picture taken here. You will also find a fun Star Wars display – we had a real Star Wars speeders that you could get your picture taken by!

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Let’s talk about the Star Wars Day at Sea so you know what to expect! Prior to the actual Star Wars day, the rest of your cruise is pretty typical, more people in Star Wars shirts but pretty normal otherwise. The day you arrive, you will find in your room a selection card where they want you to rank your choices from 1-5. You are guaranteed 2 experiences and if they can squeeze in a third they will. The night before your Star Wars day at Sea, after 10pm, there was an unofficial arrival from a galaxy far, far away in the lobby. This was not in the navigator that is left in your room every night with the day’s schedule and we only learned about it by speaking with a cast member. As we were waiting in the lobby, the lights lowered, alarms sounded and the Star Wars music started playing…..you then heard Captain Phasma’s voice and shortly after she appeared along with several First Order troopers. They started inspecting the ship for about 10 minutes working through the crowd for any rebel spies, which allowed for many fun encounters and interrogations. Satisfied the area was clear, they departed leaving us incredibly geeked for the next day!

It’s Star Wars day! The night prior we received our times for our selected Star Wars activities. My boys are big fans of the dark side, so our scheduled meet and greets consisted of Kylo Ren and Darth Vader. A side note here is that if you speak to the cast members, they will very likely tell you where the other meet and greet locations are. You can go speak with the person overseeing meet and greets and ask if they might happen to have an opening at some time to get you in. The droid meet and greet cast member was very helpful, but as we learned about this trick later in the day, the only time available was when we had plans to see something else. When we stopped at the Chewbacca meet and greet to ask about a time, the answer was no (I think the beloved Wookie is quite popular!) I also found this to be true for the padawan training challenge where the younger kids get to train and fight the dark side; I saw many people being put on a wait list. Moral of the story, if you want to sneak in an additional meet and greet time, ask early in the day for a better chance!

Here’s a quick overview of how the day works. You have your top 2 scheduled meet times, which you receive the night before. The rest of the day it is all Star Wars – from animation classes, to crafts, scavenger hunts, races and characters constantly roaming the lobby (my favorite). They also have deck patrol with Storm Troopers/First Order troopers patrolling the pool and running decks, looking for any rebel spies. Every cruise there is a special Star Wars speaker, someone intimately involved in the Star Wars universe who speaks about how they are connected and what their role is. There is Star Wars Trivia, costume contests, dance parties and at the end of the evening a Star Wars show ending with an amazing fireworks display! And if you are hungry after all that, stop by Cabanas for a special late night Star Wars buffet!

I felt the need to maximize this day as much as possible; we were all in our Star Wars gear, my son dressed as Kylo Ren carrying a light saber, my older son carrying his light saber and me in my light saber skirt, AT-AT sweater and Star Wars Mickey ears. From the moment you step out of your room, you start hearing the Star Wars music playing and are super excited for the day to begin! We had a Kylo Ren meet and greet first thing, so we headed there first. After our intimidating meet and greet we had some time to spare and one of the things on my list was a latte with a Star Wars design on top, so we headed to the lobby and WOW was there a lot going on! We entered the lobby to find Jawas roaming around and everyone was trying to trade shiny objects with them. There were other passengers dressed in costume – including an amazing part of the Mos Eisley Cantina band. As we looked outside we saw First Order troopers patrolling the running deck, my husband and boys headed outside to watch them, at which point my husband was immediately interrogated by them, demanding identification and being told that “no one is above suspicion” (he was wearing an Imperial logo shirt). After showing them his ID (lanyard with his key card) and answering a few questions he was told to “move along.”

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Next on the agenda was an animation class where we all rendered our best Yoda effort. Really, I’m a horrible artist, but you could at least tell it was Yoda when you were done, so that’s saying something! A quick run back to the lobby because I was stalking Ahsoka as I really wanted a picture with her. As I was searching for her from the balcony, I looked over and Zam Wesell the bounty hunter was standing next to me, surveying the area as well. I was pretty excited and she graciously allowed me a picture with her. As we were heading to the elevators to head up for lunch, we came across some First Order troopers who after being sure we weren’t rebels, allowed us to take a picture with them. At lunch we found many Star Wars themed treats, adding to the fun of the day. I stopped and ran out to the pool deck because I wanted to hear the Star Wars horn which they were playing every hour. After we finished lunch, we stopped by the lobby again (looking for Ahsoka), we stopped for a picture with some Imperial Guards (but no Ahsoka).

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On to the special guest speaker, Pablo Hidalgo, full disclosure here, I had no idea who he was, but he was big in the Star Wars world and I wanted to hear him speak. My boys weren’t that excited to go as they had no idea what to expect either. We arrived a little early and were surprised to find a great seat. Pablo was funny, energetic and a great speaker who happens to have the best job ever for a Star Wars fan. Have you ever seen those Star Wars books that have pictures and descriptions for every character in that Star Wars movie? He is the one who writes the back stories, includes the details from the movie and insures that everything matches up throughout the Star Wars universe. He is consulted with on movies and more to be sure that all stories are being kept true within the Star Wars world. Now whenever we see one of his giant Star Wars books, my boys say, “There’s another Pablo Hidalgo book.” After this, it was about time for our Darth Vader meet and greet, we started to head towards the area but decided to take a quick look in the lobby for my eternal Ahsoka hunt and was so happy to see that she had just came out….I was super giddy to finally get my picture with her-which my boys still tease me about, but hey, this cruise isn’t just for kids! On to Darth Vader who quickly talked my youngest into joining the Dark Side (should I be scared at how willingly he went?).

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We had some time before dinner, so we went around to the photographers, the boys with their light sabers and got some fun Star Wars themed pictures together and separate with them. Time for dinner, which was all Star Wars themed; Bantha Steak Empanadas, Grilled Bounty Hunter Fish Filet, and Han Solo’s Frozen Carbonite Sundae were just some of the options; and of course, the servers were all in Star Wars outfits as well. We headed up to find a good spot to view the Star Wars show and fireworks, and found a pretty amazing spot for good views of everything on Deck 12. The show was great, with music and Star Wars characters (including my favorite, Darth Maul) and then the whole thing ended with an amazing fireworks show set to Star Wars music. At the end of the show, Cabanas was all set for an amazing late night buffet-the perfect end to an incredible day!

If you ever have the opportunity to take a themed cruise like this, I highly recommend it! The energy and excitement from everyone on the boat is incredible! While we were waiting for the evening Star Wars show and fireworks to begin, my boys were down one deck below light saber fighting with new found Jedi friends. So many people dressed to impress with amazing outfits and costumes and it was so much fun to see the enthusiasm. At the end of the evening we came back to a window cling on our mirror saying “The force is strong on this ship” and a bantha towel animal. The only problem is I had to talk the family into trying something else other than a Star Wars themed cruise as they can’t imagine a better cruise then this one!

If you are considering a Disney cruise, I’d love to answer your questions! Feel free to email me or visit my Facebook page for more pictures and a few videos! Know that you will make unforgettable family memories that will last a lifetime!

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Fun free and cheap things to do at Disney World

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

Fun free and cheap things to do at Disney World

Jamie Lacy
12.6.18
Walt Disney World is a dream vacation for most! We absolutely love planning our days and going to all four parks to enjoy all of the attractions. Between the wonderful rides, shows, and fun interactions with Disney Characters it can be a bit overwhelming. Did you know there are a lot of fun, cheap, and even free things to do all around Disney! Sit back, relax, and enjoy planning a vacation filled with magic and affordable fun! I have 6 inexpensive (cheap) and 6 free things to do around “The World.”

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6 Inexpensive activities

 

#1- Take a 25-minute wagon ride around Fort Wilderness Campground for $12/adult, $8/child (ages 3-9). The rides are offered nightly at 6pm and 8:30pm and depart from in front of Pioneer Hall. No reservations taken just make sure you bring cash!

Source:DisneyParks

#2-Rent a Canoe or Kayak at The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness for $13/hour. Reservations are not required and are on a first come first served basis. Guests must be 18 and over and present a valid resort id along with a valid driver’s license, state issued id or military id.

Source:DisneyParks

#3-Play a game of miniature golf at one or both Mini golf courses. Fantasia Gardens,located near Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Winter Summerland, located near Blizzard Beach Water Park. Cost: $14/adults, $12/child. Discounts are available for this attraction, too! If you are a DVC member (Disney Vacation Club) or an Annual Passholder you receive a small discount (Just remember your membership cards).

Source:DisneyParks

#4-Resort hop and collect a pressed penny from each resort. Some of the pennies are specific to the theme of that resort. Cost for most of the pennies range from .50-$1.50

Source:DisneyParks

#5-Rent a 2 or 4-person Surrey bike to ride and explore around the Boardwalk Resort!

Cost- $25 (includes tax)

Source:DisneyParks

 

#6 Visit your resort arcade and have fun playing family friendly video games. To play games you must purchase a game card (which is rechargeable) and add game points onto the card at the kiosk located inside of the arcade. The kiosk takes credit card and cash. You can also use the your game card at other Disney World Resort arcades!

Source:DisneyParks

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6 Free activities

 

#1- Take a trip over to Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo House and enjoy watching the animals in the savannah. Stick around for the campfire and story-telling! All for free!

Source:DisneyParks

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#2- Fun photo opportunities are all over Disney World but the best and most fun can be had at the All-Star resorts. You will love the larger than life characters and Disney icons to pose with!

 

#3-If you visit Ghirardelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop they will give you a free sample!

Source:DisneyParks

#4-Chip and Dale’s campfire Sing-a-long! After the sing-a-long stick around to watch a movie under the stars! Enjoy this free activity at Disney’s Fort Wilderness campground. Chip and Dale make an appearance for photos and autographs! Smores kits can be purchased for a small fee.

Source:DisneyParks

#5-Visit the horses at the Tri-Circle D Ranch. These are the same horses that make their way down Main Street!

Source:DisneyParks
#6-Watch the Electrical Water Pageant from 1 of 5 resorts along the Seven Seas Lagoon and afterwards enjoy the Happily Ever After fireworks spectacular!

Source:DisneyParks

 

BONUS ACTIVITY! #7- Have fun searching for hidden Mickey’s EVERYWHERE!!
This is just the tip of the iceberg; there are many more fun, cheap and free activities to partake in. I hope you find this list helpful and enjoy exploring on your next vacation to Disney World! If you would like help planning your next magical getaway you may contact me via my Facebook page or by visiting my bio page!

 

Jamie Lacy

(972)762-4377

Concierge Agent with Wishes Family Travel

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FIRST LOOK: UNIVERSAL’S ENDLESS SUMMER RESORT – SURFSIDE INN AND SUITES GUEST ROOMS

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

FIRST LOOK: UNIVERSAL’S ENDLESS SUMMER RESORT – SURFSIDE INN AND SUITES GUEST ROOMS
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It feels like summer 2019 will be here in a blink and I’m so excited because that means Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites will welcome its first guests. What can you expect at our newest hotel? A fun surf theme, exclusive Universal Orlando theme park benefits and our most affordable price point ever. I seriously can’t wait!

Because I grew up near Florida’s premier beaches, I made sure that the details at Surfside Inn and Suites make you feel like you’re right in the ocean surf. As a Senior Manager for the Universal Creative team, I have worked on exciting projects that made magic and thrills come to life inside our theme parks. Now I’m bringing that same level of detail and authenticity our guests see in the parks to the design at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort.

Here’s a first look at the surf-inspired guest rooms at our newest hotel!

Universal's Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Inn and Suites Guest Room

As soon as you step into your room you’ll see the beach vibe everywhere. The vibrant design features remind me of being inside the barrel of a wave, surrounded by cool blue waters. Details like a full-sized surfboard, colorful artwork, bright pinstriped rug runners, and tie-dye curtains will make the perfect retreat for families.

Universal's Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Inn and Suites Guest Room

Something I’ve really loved designing are the 2 Bedroom Suites. Forget connecting rooms because here the whole family can stay in one suite. These rooms sleep up to six people with a separate bedroom so adults can have some privacy. There’s also a beachy picnic table and kitchenette area, which is the perfect space for the whole family to hang out and eat a yummy pizza. Something else I love about the suites are the spacious bathrooms – with two sinks and a separate shower area, the entire family can get ready quickly and hit the parks in time for Early Park Admission.

Speaking of the theme parks, when you stay at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort you’ll receive all of the exclusive benefits that come with staying at a Universal Orlando hotel: Early Park Admission, free transportation to CityWalk and the parks, and resort-wide charging privileges with your room key. All of these theme park benefits plus the quality of a Universal Orlando hotel at this price point? You won’t find a deal like this anywhere else in Orlando!

Universal's Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Inn and Suites Guest Room

I grew up living the surf lifestyle and I can’t wait to share that with you when you stay at Surfside Inn and Suites. Make sure you book your room now! Rates for a seven night stay start at just $73 per night for a standard room, and $111 for a 2 Bedroom Suite.

And stay tuned to the blog for more details about Surfside Inn and Suites and its sister property, Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn and Suites.

Originally Published: https://blog.universalorlando.com/whats-new/first-look-surfside-inn-suites-rooms/

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Packing Cubes: The Must Have Organizational Tool

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

Packing Cubes: The Must Have Organizational Tool

Christina Szewczuk
12.4.18

I had been hearing so much about packing cubes. They are in every travel blog about organization and space saving and I began thinking “What is the big deal with these things, do they really make that much of a difference?” My curiosity got to me and I began searching for a little “starter set.” I figured I’d get a cheap set and find out what all the hoopla was about. I ordered a $12 set of 6 blue ones from Amazon that came with three zippered pouches and three small rectangular shaped ones of varied sizes.

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I was going on a beach vacation for just over a week. I needed to pack 4 bathing suits (I wear tankinis), 2 cover-ups, few pairs of shorts, 1 skort, tank tops, 2 short sleeve shirts, long sleeved shirt, my favorite jeggings, 2 pair of capris, undergarments, 2 sweatshirts, pjs (top, sweatpant bottoms and a knit cardigan) plus my extra shoes (sandals and extra flip flops). Everything fit in my fairly small bag with room to spare thanks to my cubes! All week long my clothes were organized and wrinkle free. Here’s how I did it…

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I usually separate my clothes into groups. For example, undergarments in one spot and bathing suits together in another spot, etc. However, even though those clothes are grouped together, when you put them into your suitcase or travel bag, you still have to dig around and find them when needed. Not if you organize with packing cubes! I have one cube for each grouping. So I placed undergarments in the smallest cube, and I folded one of the pouches in half and kept it empty to place used garments into. The medium sized cube contained my 4 tankinis and 2 cover ups. The largest one had the tops, shorts, and skort in it. I used the largest pouch to put my jeggings and two pair of capris into. I folded and then rolled up each article of clothing so as to save space. While all of my clothes fit into the cubes, my sweatshirts, although lightweight, were too large to put inside them. Even rolled up they were not fitting. But, I was able to stick them along the sides of the bag for easy retrieval.

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The whole week, every time I was able to quickly grab something out of its respective cube and place it back into the bag without upsetting the apple cart, I was praising these things. I was able to grab fresh clothes for the shower quickly and easily without wondering where things were or having to unpack the entire bag to find one article of clothing. Since I didn’t have to empty my bag every time I needed something, my clothes stayed mostly wrinkle free and my things were not strewn all over the hotel room. It was also easy to pack to go home- I hadn’t even really unpacked! The moral of the story is: Get yourself a set of packing cubes. It’s a total game changer!

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Did you get yourself some packing cubes or do you use them currently? I’d love to hear your story about how you discovered these. If you would like to chat about travel and get a quote for your next fabulous getaway, email me at Christina@WishesFamilyTravel.com. For more tips, info and fun, you can follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest!

 

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BOOK BY: 2.28.19 Dominican Republic Deals

Posted by on 12:49 pm in NON Disney Specials, Special Offers, WFT Specials | 0 comments

BOOK BY: 2.28.19 Dominican Republic Deals

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BOOK BY: 2.28.19

*Conditions apply: Special promotions valid on new bookings only. Contact GOGO Worldwide Vacations for further details. Prices are per person, based on double occupancy accommodations. Land packages do not include meals unless otherwise indicated. Savings reflect land prices only and vary by resort and travel dates. Resort credits are not redeemable for cash. Availability is limited. Rates and/or package prices are subject to holiday blackouts, peak period surcharges, and cancellation charges may be applicable of up to the full price paid depending on the package and when it is cancelled. Government imposed hotel and resort taxes and fees may not be reflected in the advertised price and may be payable directly to the hotel and resort. Other restrictions may apply and vary by resort. My Time: All My Time offers are provided by our third party suppliers to My Time customers and are subject to availability. My Time and any third party supplier may (in their sole discretion) substitute any of the offers for any other offer that is available for similar or no face value. All offers have no cash value, are not combinable with any other offers and are not transferable. Any offers not used have no surrender value and are not redeemable for cash. Valid for travel thru 4/30/19; must book by 2/28/19. GOGO Worldwide Vacations does not assume responsibility for any errors or omissions in the content of the offers displayed. CST#2088177

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Epcot is Fun for Kids!

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

Becky Criswell
11.29.18

I hear it all the time. “We are going to skip Epcot because there’s nothing there for the kids.” I can remember being on a family trip to Disney World when I was 6 years old. I came down with a 24-hour stomach bug and my Dad and older brothers chose to go to Epcot that day and assured me that I wasn’t missing anything because there was nothing in that park that I would like. Well that was a long time ago and things have changed! But sadly, many people still consider Epcot unsuitable for smaller children. I’m not here to guarantee that your children are going to love Epcot. I can’t guarantee how much your family will enjoy any of the parks. Everyone has different interests and everyone differs when choosing their favorite Disney park. What I am going to do is give you five things you may want to consider before writing off Epcot for younger children.

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1. The Seas with Nemo and Friends
The Living Seas Pavilion has a long history in Epcot, dating back to 1986. Now this pavilion, which has been renamed, is more kid-friendly than ever. Here you will find “The Seas with Nemo and Friends”, an adorable ride which takes you on a slow-moving clamshell where guests can go on their own search for Nemo. In addition to this ride, “Turtle Talk with Crush” is not to be missed! Before or after you participate in these attractions, your family can enjoy time in the aquarium. Here you will see a large variety of sea life, including rare and beautiful manatees. The exhibits here are both educational and interactive.

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2. Character Interactions
Epcot is home to several character Meet & Greets, currently including the beloved Baymax as well as Joy and Sadness. The Epcot Character Spot typically features some of the most popular Disney pals such as Mickey, Minnie and Goofy. In addition to these character spots, your family can dine at two of my favorite restaurants. The Garden Grill is a delicious and fun experience where you will enjoy farm-to-table food served family style. Here you will usually get to meet characters such as Mickey, Pluto, Chip & Dale. Mickey looks adorable in his farmer overalls! Another popular restaurant in Epcot is Akershus. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Akershus gives you the opportunity to dine with the princesses for only one table-service credit as opposed to Cinderella’s Royal Table which will cost two of your table-service credits.

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3. Soarin’ and Test Track
Older children who are at least 40” tall can experience both Soarin’ and Test Track. These are two of my favorite rides in Disney World. Soarin’ is an amazing experience for the whole family and gives you the sensation of flying around the world. If you have children who are car fanatics, Test Track could very well be a highlight of their vacation. In addition to the ride, my car-loving son could spend in hour in the vehicle showroom that you will walk through upon exiting the ride.
4. Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure
We all know that adults love the World Showcase in Epcot. Who wouldn’t love to get a glimpse of 11 countries in one location and maybe grab a drink (or two) and some authentic ethnic cuisine. However, I often here parents voicing concerns that their children will be bored. Did you know that your children can become secret agents and embark on a mission to defeat Dr. Doofenshmirtz while you are traveling the World Showcase? By signing up online, children can use a smart phone to receive clues via text that will help them solve the case. The clues will lead you to one of the World Showcase pavilions where you will begin a mission that lasts 30-45 minutes. You can do one mission, or you can try them all!

5. Kidcot Fun Stops
There’s nothing wrong with a little education on vacation! Kidcot Fun Stops offer a way to keep your child entertained while also being educated on each country that you visit. For more detailed information on the Kidcot Fun Stops, check out this great blog by my fellow agent:

Kidcot Fun Stops and Bit of Pixie Dust by Sarah McClure

I hope I’ve given you a few reasons to consider taking your children to Epcot. In the coming months and years, there will be even more attractions coming to Epcot that will be geared towards families with children. Older children can get excited about the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy roller coaster set to open in 2021!
For more information about planning your Disney vacation, please contact me at beckyc@wishesfamilytravel.com!

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How to See the Wonders of the World by Cruising

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

How to See the Wonders of the World by Cruising

By: Connie Motz

How to See the Wonders of the World by Cruising
After a seven-year period and with over 100 million votes cast worldwide, the New Seven Wonders of the World were chosen in 2007 from a ballot consisting of 200 awe-inspiring possibilities. You can visit all of these impressive wonders — with only one exception — on fabulous cruise vacations with Norwegian Cruise Line. In fact, there’s even one cruise where you can visit two wonders with just one exhilarating itinerary. Wouldn’t that be something worth sending a postcard home about?

So just where are the extraordinary New Seven Wonders of the World? Let’s take a look.

1. Chichén Itzá, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Chichen Itza, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Currently, there are 39 different cruise vacations with Norwegian Cruise Line that will sail you away to the tropical island paradise of Cozumel, Mexico, with departures from Miami, New Orleans, New York, Orlando, and Tampa. Besides the pristine white sand beaches, you’ll have the chance to visit the awe-inspiring Chichén Itzá archeological site by airplane. This four-hour shore excursion will whisk you away to these ancient Mayan ruins in under an hour, so you’ll have plenty of time to explore the site — including the iconic stair-cased Temple of Kukulcan, intricate stone carvings, and two ancient lime-green cenotes.

2. Christ the Redeemer Statue, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Christ the Redeemer Statue, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The all-important pre- or post-cruise stay gives you the opportunity to see the New Seven Wonders of the World by cruising. Just think, on a 14-day South America cruise on Norwegian Sun, you can view both penguins and the Christ the Redeemer statue if you’re willing to extend your cruise vacation timeline. Before embarking or after disembarking in Buenos Aires, Argentina, you could be on a relatively quick three-hour flight from Rio de Janeiro to the 99-foot-tall Christ the Redeemer statue, where you’ll encounter one of the world’s most amazing cities and breathtaking South Atlantic Ocean views.

3. The Great Wall of China

Great Wall of China

Again, here’s where the coveted pre- or post-cruise scenario comes into play. You’ve already taken time off from work — and your vacation time is valuable, right? Maybe even invaluable. So why not extend your vacation to really enjoy the destination? On a 12-day or 13-day Southeast Asia Cruise on Norwegian Jewel, you’ll either embark or disembark in Hong Kong. From there, you can take a 3.5-hour flight to Beijing, where you’ll be just 80 km away by car from the iconic Great Wall of China, the longest architectural defensive wall in the world — definitely worth a vacation extension.

4. Machu Picchu, Peru

Machu Picchu, Peru

Visiting Machu Picchu is a travel bucket list must–see. These ancient Inca ruins weren’t discovered until 1911 by explorers from Yale University — who knew? But you can discover this stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site for yourself on South America cruise from Miami or Santiago, Chile, on Norwegian Sun, or on a 15-day South Africa Explorer from Miami on Norwegian Star. All three enticing cruises spend a full day in Lima, Peru, making it easy to take a 75-minute flight to Machu Picchu. As an added bonus, you’ll be transiting through the Panama Canal.

5. Petra, Jordan

Petra, Jordan

Carved into pink sandstone, Petra is an archaeological site to behold with its impressive combination of temples and caves. You can visit this world-renowned destination on a 21-Day Greece, Holy Land, Egypt, and Abu Dhabi cruise on Norwegian Jade, or the 21-Day Arabian Odyssey: Greece, Israel, Egypt, and Abu Dhabi on Norwegian Spirit, both sailing from Rome. Upon arrival at Aqaba, it’s only 126 km from Petra. And the huge bonus here? Both cruises also visit Rome, so you’ll be able to cross off two of the Seven Wonders of the World in one fantastic cruise vacation.

6. The Roman Colosseum, Rome, Italy

The Roman Colosseum, Rome, Italy

During your Italian cruise vacation, you might be thinking of visiting the world-famous Roman Colosseum on your own, but consider this: if you go individually, you’ll be bombarded by so many locals encouraging you to hire them as guides that it can nearly ruin the experience. So just relax and enjoy your vacation instead. Norwegian Cruise Line has pre-planned and scouted out the best ways for you to enjoy your Roman Colosseum experience. Whether you want to just pass by for a quick photo op or want to sit in the spectator seats yourself, Norwegian Cruise Line has you covered.

7. Taj Mahal, Agra, India

Taj Mahal, Agra, India

Okay, this is the one and only exception to seeing all of the New Seven Wonders of the World with Norwegian Cruise Line. However, that’s only because the Taj Mahal is located inland in the city of Agra. Still, a 17-Day Journey to The East from Dubai on Norwegian Jade will take you to Mormugao in Goa, India, where you can see the picturesque Dudhsagar Falls, the 17th-century lighthouse at Fort Aguada, or the 1600s Chapora Fort ruins with its spectacular sunset views. Goa is also home to the Basilica of Bom Jesus, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

What draws you to the New Seven Wonders of the World? Maybe you’re a huge history buff and can never see enough architectural marvels. Or maybe it’s photographing these incredible sites for yourself and to share with generations to come. Whatever your reasons may be, rest assured that Norwegian Cruise Line will get you in there in style, all while allowing you the flexibility and freedom to do what you want, when you want on board Norwegian’s ships — that’s the Freestyle Cruising advantage. Are you ready to book your next cruise vacation?

Originally Published: https://www.ncl.com/travel-blog/how-to-see-the-seven-wonders-of-the-world-by-cruising

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MaxPass for a day at California Adventure

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments

MaxPass for a day at California Adventure

Leslie Dinunzio
11.27.18

MaxPass. This is a fairly new program at Disneyland in California that, in a nutshell, makes it possible to obtain many Fast Passes throughout the day for some of the more popular rides.

Fastpasses

During a recent trip to Disneyland, my family treated ourselves to one day with MaxPass, which we used in Disney’s California Adventure Park. We added our MaxPass via the Disneyland app, right in the park. The cost to add MaxPass to your reservation is $10 per person per day, so $40 for my family of four for the one day we used it. At Disney’s California Adventure, the attractions that allowed for Fast Passes/MaxPass are Radiator Springs Racers, Toy Story Midway Mania, Guardians of the Galaxy, Grizzly River Run, Goofy’s Sky School, and Soarin’ Around the World.

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Essentially, the way MaxPass works is you select a Fast Pass attraction and time for your party via the Disneyland app. Sometimes the selected Fast Pass time may be a few minutes away while others it may be hours later. For example, my family wanted to go on Soarin’ which had a 25 minute wait one morning. We were able to get a Fast Pass via MaxPass for just a few minutes from the current time. On the other hand, while we took advantage of riding Radiator Springs Racers several times, there were times where we made our Fast Pass selection but still had to wait several hours for our time slot. What we really liked is that even though you may not have yet used a Fast Pass, you could make additional selections every 1.5 hours or once the start time of your next Fast Pass started. We paid close attention to the times to take advantage of as many Fast Pass selections as possible and, at one point, had three Fast Passes in our queue.

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By utilizing MaxPass, we were able to ride/select Fast Passes for each of the abovementioned attractions two to four times that day. MaxPass, coupled with Magic Morning (more about that in another blog!) truly allowed my family to have a fabulous day enjoying some of the most popular rides in the park.

Ask me about a Disneyland Resort package today at Leslie@wishesfamilytravel.com.

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BOOK BY: 12.3.18 Princess Cruise:Cyber Event

Posted by on 7:00 am in Cruise Specials, NON Disney Specials, WFT Specials | 0 comments

BOOK BY: 12.3.18 Princess Cruise:Cyber Event

WFT_PrincessCyber

 

BOOK BY:12.3.18

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VIDEO: First Look: Disney Skyliner Gondola at Walt Disney World Resort

Posted by on 7:00 am in Thoughts and Opinions | 0 comments


The Disney Skyliner Gondola at Walt Disney World Resort will offer guests a new way to experience Walt Disney World Resort with amazing views only available from the sky.

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