What’s New in Disney World in 2022-2024

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In this post, we are going to discuss all the newest Disney World rides and attractions, as well as give you a glimpse of everything coming to the parks in 2022-2024.  I know 2024 seems like a long time away, but with all the new rides that Disney is currently building, we want to prepare you for what’s next.

new and coming rides and attraction in Disney World

The easiest way to do this is to break everything down park by park.  Just in case you haven’t been to Walt Disney World in the last few years, we will give you a brief overview of the new Disney attractions, that are already in the parks and what’s coming soon.

We try to stay on top of all the different construction zones around property (and there are plenty of them) on a monthly basis so you can even see these new rides being built stage by stage.  It’s really fun to watch and will give you an insight into what actually goes into these complicated systems.

The last few years have been interesting, to say the least, and things haven’t gone exactly the way Disney originally planned. Last year was supposed to be a huge year for construction, but the Disney World Closure changed that in 2020 and 2021, and it slowed all projects down moving forward.

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Because Disney has lost billions of dollars in this period, CEO Bob Chapek announced that they cut the construction budget by hundreds of millions of dollars over the last couple of years. Because of this, many of the new rides and attractions coming to Disney World are either being delayed or cancelled outright.

Thankfully, Walt Disney World is now open once again and all of the projects that still have the green light are moving full steam ahead. However, some of the attractions that we thought we were getting in 2021, we’ll have to wait until 2022 to experience. Likewise, some of the rides scheduled for 2022 are now pushed off until 2023, and so on.

The good news is that if you haven’t been in a few years, there are already a ton of new attractions in Disney World to come and see.

Waiting for what’s coming to the parks next is also a consideration, and either way, you’ll have many new exciting things to see and do.

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One of the biggest new things in Walt Disney World is the 50th Anniversary celebration which started in 2021 and is carrying on through early 2023.  Expect the resort to be at almost full capacity as the celebration carries on, so if you can come before that, it might be the best time to visit.

In fact, it’s for Disney World’s 50th Anniversary that most of the new rides, attractions, restaurants, and hotels on our list are being built, and the majority of them will be done at least by some point during the celebration.

You May of heard that FastPass is gone and the Disney Genie system has now taken its place. This is going to have a big effect on the way you tour the parks.

MagicBand+ coming to Disney World

You also may know that Disney is introducing new MagicBands called MagicBank+  in 2022. This accessory is the next generation and has a ton of interactive features guests will use during their stay. So far all the details about MagicBand+ make it seem like it will be worth the price.

Magic Kingdom

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Since we’re talking about anniversaries, let’s start off in Disney’s Magic Kingdom, where Disney World was born.  Honestly, if you haven’t been in a few years, there aren’t that many new things you need to see.

A few years ago they added some new hard-ticketed events like the Villains After Hours party which is themed around, of course, the Disney Villains.  It isn’t quite as good as the regular Disney After Hours events they also do in the park, but it’s close.

These events are currently on hold and haven’t come back yet since the reopening of the park. You might have to wait until 2022 or later, even though some of the hard-ticketed events have come back to the Magic Kingdom already.

The Happily Ever After fireworks show has been canceled and replaced by the newest nighttime spectacular Disney Enchantment. It debuted on October 1, 2021, to mixed reviews from fans and we don’t think it lives up to its predecessor.

The Magic Kingdom definitely isn’t the park with the highest number of attractions coming in the next few years, but it has one of the biggest ones, and definitely the fastest new ride. 

The biggest by far is the TRON Lightcycle Run Roller Coaster. This is a clone of the roller coaster in Shanghai Disneyland, and will quickly jump to the most popular ride in the park when it’s done.

Tron Roller Coaster Magic Kingdom Concept Art

It was originally scheduled for a Spring/Summer 2021 opening date, but that has now gotten pushed back at least until 2022 and possibly 2023. In fact, Disney Imagineer Bob Weis said it will restart in phases.

It wasn’t ready in time for the 50th and so far Disney has not given us an exact opening date. We’ll let you know as soon as we have an opening date.

The big news that was dropped recently was one of Disney World’s most beloved attractions, Splash Mountain, getting a complete re-theming into a Princess and the Frog themed attraction.

The Disney fans are split on whether or not it should happen, but it is happening. It will remain a log flume ride, but now set in the Louisiana Bayou and featuring Princess Tiana and Louis as they bring you on a musical journey from the film.

Splash Mountain Retheming Princess and the Frog

This is not going to be a small project and we expect between 1-2 years to complete the re-theming once it actually gets going. At this point, we don’t know when construction is starting so don’t expect this to be open any time before 2023, or even later.

You may have noticed that the Walt Disney World Railroad hasn’t been making its usual loop around the Magic Kingdom.  It closed in 2019 and has yet to reopen. Recent progress leads us to hope that the Walt Disney World Railroad will reopen sometime in Late 2022.  

Don’t expect to see any more E-Ticket attractions in the next few years, but we are still anxiously waiting for a new nighttime parade.  No announcements have been made but rumors persist.

While insiders have been saying for years that it’s coming soon, we don’t expect it in 2022. There is always hope for 2023 though.

EPCOT

coming to Epcot in 2020, 2021 and 2022

If we were putting this list in order of the parks with the highest number of new rides and attractions coming in the next few years, there is no doubt that EPCOT would be #1.  Right now it’s one big construction zone, and that’s the price we have to pay after years of letting things go.

Good thing that things are looking up and there is a great, big, beautiful tomorrow in store for EPCOT, though some plans have been altered recently.

If you haven’t heard yet EPCOT is getting a complete transformation, with new attractions and a complete re-do of Future World. 

In fact, we found out at the last D23 Expo that Future World would cease to exist, and instead, the park has been divided up into 4 new neighborhoods which will hold the current and new attractions located there.

Epcot Transformation Project Concept Art

A great way to see what’s coming to EPCOT was to visit the EPCOT Experience exhibit at the Odyssey Pavilion.  This was recently closed, but it had a huge model and awesome video of EPCOT and all the pavilions that will be seeing changes in 2022, and extending until 2023, 2024, and beyond.

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Some of those changes already started in 2021 and they are continuing so far in 2022.  For example, just recently 3 new EPCOT films debuted. Awesome Planet can be found in The Land pavilion which explores our planet earth, bringing it alive in a way only Disney can.

Canada has been getting an exterior makeover, but its film recently got one too in “Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 3D.”  It has new scenes, a new musical score, and updated visuals that will take your breath away.

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The third film is a “Beauty and the Beast” Sing-Along which has taken over the Impressions de France theater, most of the day that is.  This is a recent effort by Disney to introduce more characters into EPCOT.

We aren’t quite as harsh as some, but there is no doubt that this is a downgrade to the original show. We just wish there were more showings of Impressions de France every day instead of being relegated to the end of the evening.

The last new film coming to EPCOT is another Circle-Vision 360 film coming to the China pavilion called “Wondrous China.”  This film replaces the old one, again with entirely new scenes being filmed. 

There is no exact date for it yet, but expect it to debut sometime in 2022 or 2023.

New pavilion Epcot World Celebration concept art

Looking into the front half of the park (the old Future World), this is where we see the most changes happening. 

One of the main features of this newly designed area in EPCOT was to be the 3-story Festival Center, which has since been canceled. Located high above World Celebration, it was going to have shops, restaurants, and an observation deck on the top level, providing amazing views into World Showcase.

This was going to be a huge part of the new EPCOT expansion, however, with Disney’s budget cuts for new rides and attractions, the original version of the festival center was no longer viewed as “necessary” and Disney is building something much smaller in its place.

EPCOT World Celebration ground lights Concept Art

This new area sits on the old location of the former CommuniCore West building and is now more like a festival area rather than an actual elevated pavilion structure in the original concept art. It will be called CommuniCore Hall and CommuniCore Plaza after the former Future World pavilion.

There will be an indoor area with a Mickey & Friends character meet, as well as a flexible exhibition and gallery space, offering a wide variety of experiences that highlight art, live music, food, a demonstration kitchen, a mixology bar, and more.

EPCOT Communicore Plaza Concept Art

CommuniCore Plaza will have the flexibility to host intimate musical performances that extend out into the nearby gardens, as you can see in the rendering above, as well as large-scale concerts

Construction hasn’t started on this yet but we expect it to potentially open within the next year.

EPCOT World Celebration Garden lights Concept Art

The EPCOT Gardens will make the park more nature-friendly and fill World Celebration with as much green as possible and include a vast network of lush gardens. This area will be filled with plenty of seating for guests, and shade (something EPCOT is currently missing).

“Dreamer’s Point” is an area in World Celebration that will feature a storytelling fountain and also a statue of Walt Disney. Since he never got to see EPCOT built, this is a fitting tribute to the man who started it all.

The biggest new attraction at EPCOT is the Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind Roller Coaster which opened on May 27, 2022.  That means it will be open for the entire Summer and also in time for the park’s 40th Anniversary in October 2022.

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This is a groundbreaking new ride and is one of the longest indoor roller coasters in the world.  It uses new ride vehicle technology called the “Omnicoaster”, awesome storytelling elements, and crazy special effects which have instantly made it the most ride in EPCOT.

We’ve finally had a chance to ride it and were completely blown away by the new ride system and all the incredible special effects Disney Imagineers worked so hard on over the last few years. This could be the best roller coaster in Disney World and it’s a must-do for the majority of guests.

Moana Journey of Water Concept Art

The Moana: Journey of Water attraction is one that was just announced at the last D23 Expo, and the first attraction based on the Walt Disney Studios hit film.  It will be located near The Seas, in the area where Innoventions West used to call home.

Guests interact with magical, living water in this interactive experience.  We expect Journey of Water to be delayed and open sometime in 2023.

On the other side of Future World, the Play! Pavilion is being built in the old Wonders of Life building.  Disney describes it as an “immersive and interactive city” where they promise interaction with your favorite Disney characters, and it will be another addition aiming at a younger audience. 

No specific IPs have been announced yet, but the concept art gives away who you can expect to see.

This was supposed to be open in time for the 50th Anniversary in 2021, but with so much time passed and so little done on the project at this time, we expect 2023 or 2024 to be the more likely scenario.

Play Pavilion epcot concept art

The rumor that won’t go away is big changes coming to the imagination pavillion,  and though changes are needed desperately, nothing has been announced so far.  This is one project that even if Disney did have plans for, it has likely been pushed way back.

If we do eventually get a new ride, we expect Figment to still play a major role, but don’t expect anything new to open here until 2024 or later.

Hungry guests in World Celebration will be happy to know there is a new dining choice in the front half of EPCOT as Connections Cafe & Eatery has taken over the old location of the Electric Umbrella. The food here is excellent and there are lots of great pizza, burger, and salad options to choose from.

Of all the new rides coming to Walt Disney World, this next project is the one we are personally most curious about. Work was supposed to get started a few years ago on a complete refurbishment of Spaceship Earth called: “Spaceship Earth: Our Shared Story.” 

This classic attraction was getting a total overhaul, with new scenes, changes to the existing ones, and a new way of telling the story to guests.

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That has officially come to a halt, and when Disney World reopened, Spaceship Earth returned with it, in its prior form. It will probably still happen eventually, but it wasn’t necessary when money is tight right now.

We were a bit nervous about the development of this new take on a classic EPCOT ride, and hope that when it eventually does get built that it doesn’t lose some of what makes it so special. 

At this point, construction hasn’t even started and there is no telling now when it might start. The rumor was that this is an 18-month project, so we likely won’t see it finished before 2024.

On a positive note Spaceship Earth has new lights installed in between each of the panels on the outside of the structure for the new nighttime light show “Beacons of Magic.”

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This is one of the coolest additions to EPCOT in years and it looks absolutely stunning in person. The show repeats every 10-15 minutes once the sun sets, and we highly recommend going down near Spaceship Earth to watch it!

The front half of EPCOT isn’t the only area that is getting new attractions.  There are plenty of amazing new changes coming to World Showcase as well, starting with Disney’s DuckTales World Showcase Adventure.

This interactive experience replaces Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure and lets guests join Scrooge McDuck, Donald, Huey, Dewey and Louie, Launchpad, and Webby in search of priceless treasure.  No opening date has been given, but we’re guessing it will be ready sometime in 2022.

The huge expansion to the France Pavilion is probably one of the most exciting new additions in Disney World for many guests.  Disney took arguably the best pavilion in World Showcase, and made it even better.

Fountain in front of Remy's Ratatouille Adventure

The new area is now open and starts in the back of the France pavilion. There you will come across a beautiful new plaza, filled with shops and dining options.  In fact, you must try the La Creperie de Paris, where we have been spending a lot of our time eating crepes!

The crown jewel of the France expansion though is Remy’s Ratatouille. This is a copycat of the ride already found in Disneyland Paris, and offers yet another family-friendly attraction in EPCOT. It has instantly become one of the best new rides for Kids in Disney World.

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Guests hop inside a unique trackless vehicle and are shrunk down to the size of a rat.  You’ll join Remy through a wild adventure in Gusteau’s kitchen where you’ll fly under tables, through the walls, and avoid danger at every turn. 

The expansion to the France pavilion and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure opened on October 1, 2021. We’ve been on this many times now and we can say it’s a blast! And don’t worry, you no longer have to use the virtual queue Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure as there is now a standby queue.

Perhaps the most intriguing new attraction coming to Disney World in the next few years now is not coming after all. In 2019, Disney announced a new attraction based on one of Disney’s most beloved characters of all time, Mary Poppins.

Details around the Mary Poppins attraction have been hush-hush so far, but plans called for it to completely transform the back of the U.K. pavilion into a real-life Cherry Tree lane.

Construction never began on the project, however, and Disney has announced the project has been canceled for now. Disney leadership said that they haven’t forgotten about the project, but whether it ever gets built remains to be seen.

Cherry Tree Lane Mary Poppins ride Epcot concept art

There are no shortages of amazing places to eat in EPCOT, but a bunch of new restaurants have opened in the last couple of years that have placed themselves among the best in the park.

Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue is a quick service restaurant that opened in 2020 and quickly became one of our favorite counter service restaurants in Disney World. 

Located in the American Adventure pavilion, it offers authentic BBQ, and has a menu that will make your mouth water! Oh yeah, and its mascot is Sam the Eagle from the Muppets too!

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Definitely, the most ambitious new restaurant coming to Disney World, or any theme park in the world for that matter is a space-themed restaurant called Space 220.

Located near Mission: SPACE in Future World, this restaurant takes diners out of this world and the giant LED windows make it look like you are eating in outer space! 

Space 220 finally opened in 2021, but it is one of the hardest-to-get dining reservations in Walt Disney World, selling out months in advance. It’s absolutely incredible, however, and we highly recommend going.

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There are also plenty of new entertainment options in EPCOT with a brand new fireworks show lighting up World Showcase Lagoon.  Unfortunately, this meant saying goodbye to our all-time favorite Disney fireworks show “Illuminations,” but after 20 years, it was time for something fresh.

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The big replacement show is called: “Disney Harmonious”, and it is one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney theme park! Guests are also split on this show as it is a little clunky and hard to get a good viewing location to see everything on the water.

There is also the fact that it’s centered around Disney songs, a drastic change from EPCOT shows of the past. Even the temporary show “Epcot Forever” held true to EPCOT’s roots as a throwback to the classic EPCOT of our youth, with songs from the original attractions.

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Harmonious features some cool new effects, including water fountains, water curtains, pyrotechnics, lasers, and fireworks. The music and special effects celebrate Disney animation and will work in stories from the various countries around World Showcase.

While not our favorite shows, it’s still worth seeing.

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Disney is making a concerted effort to appeal to a younger generation in EPCOT, only time will tell if those efforts pay off while at the same time not isolating the park’s older fans.

Lastly, there are most likely more new rides and attractions coming to EPCOT in the next few years that Disney has yet to announce. 

There is always the rumor of new World Showcase pavilions coming too. Right now Brazil still seems like the most likely, but nothing is 100% at this time, and with the economic downturn, don’t expect this before 2024 or 2025.

Only one thing is certain, EPCOT is going to be a completely new park when you step foot inside it in 2022, and we can’t wait to see what’s coming next!

Hollywood Studios

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If EPCOT is more about the future of Disney World, Hollywood Studios is already in the here and now.  If you came to Hollywood Studios a few years ago, it was one big construction zone, much like EPCOT is today. 

Disney has spent billions of dollars on the park over the last few years, leading to some of the best new Disney World rides we’ve seen in a long time!

If you haven’t been to Toy Story Land yet, then you’ll definitely want to check that out on your next visit.  Guests step into Andy’s backyard and ride 3 attractions that are good for the whole family.

Toy Story Mania! is still there, though it has a brand new interactive queue that you will love.  It’s still one of the best rides in Hollywood Studios and a must-do.

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The two newest rides there, however, are Alien Swirling Saucers and Slinky Dog Dash.  Alien Swirling Saucers is a classic spinner ride, and fun if you like the theming, but not one of our favorites.

Slinky Dog Dash, on the other hand, we absolutely love and is the newest roller coaster in Walt Disney World.  Make sure you get a FastPass+ or get in line for it early on your next visit.

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There was some disappointment with Toy Story Land when it opened, and Disney is already expanding it, adding a new table service restaurant called Roundup Rodeo BBQ.  From the concept art it looks like a whole lot of fun and we can’t wait to join Woody and all his friends there!

The real big addition to Hollywood Studios, however, is Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. We’d heard about this new immersive land for years, and finally, it’s now open.

Even though it does have some flaws, we have to say that Disney hit it out of the park with Galaxy’s Edge and it’s one of the best theme park experiences we’ve had in a long time.

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Besides the amazing land itself, the many dining options, and the custom lightsaber and droid building experiences, Star Wars Land is also home to two of Hollywood Studios’ newest rides.

Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run lets you step onto the iconic spaceship from the Star Wars movies, and pilot your way on a secret smuggling mission on the outer rim.  You actually get to pilot the ship yourself and we think it’s a whole lot of fun.

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Everything that has come to Disney World over the last few years, however, pales in comparison with the land’s second attraction, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. This is the most immersive ride experience Disney has ever built, and it will completely blow you away.

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Not only is it the newest attraction in Disney World, it’s also the best.  That’s why the entrance to Hollywood Studios is packed every morning, and why people are getting in line for hours at a time just to ride.

If there is only one new Disney attraction you do on this list, make sure it is Rise of the Resistance. It surpasses all expectations!

But wait, there’s more.  As if there weren’t enough new attractions in Disney World, Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway opened in the Chinese Theater on March 4, 2020. 

This is the first Mickey Mouse-themed attraction in a Disney park, and it has lived up to expectations and is now one of our favorite attractions in the park.

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Join Mickey and Minnie on a zany adventure in yet another new attraction that uses trackless ride vehicle technology, with many surprises along the way.

Speaking of Mickey Mouse, the Mickey Shorts Theater also recently debuted and features hilarious animated shorts from the “Mickey Mouse” series.  This took over the space in the ABC Sound Studio, the former home of Star Wars: Path of the Jedi, which is now gone.

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And though not quite as interesting as some of the aforementioned attractions, you should check out the new Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy over off Sunset Blvd, especially if you have kids or are fans of the Cars franchise.

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Beyond what has recently been added, not too much is on the schedule for Disney’s Hollywood Studios, but this was the park that got the most attention in the past years, so Disney can be happy stepping back for a while and seeing all the new Disney rides that are now part of the park.

We do know there is going to be a third phase to the overhaul of Hollywood Studios coming in the future, but the details of that are not confirmed at this time, and we are looking at 2024 or later until we actually see anything of substance besides what we’ve talked about already.

Animal Kingdom

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The mind-blowing Floating Mountains

Disney’s Animal Kingdom doesn’t have too many new attractions planned in the next few years, or at least not that Disney is willing to talk about at this time.  That’s ok because they’ve recently added the $400 million dollar land, Pandora: The World of Avatar.

Even though Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is the bigger draw right now, for some fans, the best land in Disney World actually lives in the Animal Kingdom.  Pandora opened in 2017 and has been amazing guests ever since with its breathtaking views, incredible scenery, and two great new rides.

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The Na’vi River Journey is a classic Disney river ride, bringing you inside a living, bioluminescent forest on the planet of Pandora. 

There you will see beautiful visuals throughout the journey, and encounter perhaps the most impressive audio-animatronic figure ever built, the Shaman of Songs.  We wish it was a little longer, but it’s a solid ride.

Before Rise of the Resistance became big, Flight of Passage was the new, must-see attraction in Walt Disney World. 

Do you know what it feels like to ride a banshee? Think of how you feel when riding Soarin,’ and then triple the excitement level.  We think this is the most thrilling attraction in Disney World and is a close 1b for our favorite.

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Since Pandora opened, things have been relatively quiet in the Animal Kingdom.  There have been some smaller additions to the park, but nothing E-Ticket.

For example, DuckTales character meets have opened up in Dinoland U.S.A, and our personal favorite, Kevin from UP! can also be found in the park.

The newest daytime show, “Disney KiteTales” has come and taken over the location of the now-closed “Rivers of Light: We Are One.”  It is a cool show that incorporates 3-dimensional kites and incredible windcatchers as they dance through the air to the beat of beloved Disney songs.

We still think the Animal Kingdom is in need of a new nighttime show, but Disney needs to wait a bit to make sure the next one is a success. An entirely new nighttime show will probably not make it to Disney’s Animal Kingdom in time for the 50th Anniversary, but maybe it will after that.

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Meanwhile over in Dinoland U.S.A, right now it’s not about what’s new and being built, but instead what is being torn down. Just recently,  Primeval Whirl closed permanently, and the entire structure has been demolished.

What is going to go in its place? That is unclear at this time and Disney hasn’t said anything up to this point. There are always rumors about Dinoland U.S.A getting a re-theme, but nothing has been decided about that at this time, and if so it wouldn’t arrive until 2024 or later. 

We’re still holding out hope for a Zootopia Land  coming in the future, but that looks less likely now that they have reopened Rafiki’s Planet Watch which would have been the ideal spot for it. Maybe it will come to Dinoland U.S.A., or maybe Indiana Jones will. We’ll have to wait and see.

Vacay & Co Real Estate specialize in working with buyers and sellers of vacation homes within the followings areas: Kissimmee, Davenport, South Clermont & Haines City. Contact us today if you have any questions at all specific to vacation homes. We look forward to speaking to you for all your vacation home real estate needs. Contact us today: Tel: 321 284 3600 or email: info@vacayreflorida.com

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