To kick off the new year, I thought I would share some pictures from our recent trip to Florida. We wanted to do something a little different on this trip so decided to take a helicopter ride over the Disney parks. We were really looking forward to this ride and although it only lasted for about 12 minutes, we got to see a lot of the Disney property.
The only downside is that we didn’t get to fly over the Magic Kingdom, but I am told this is not permitted due to flight restrictions over the park, but none the less, we still had a great experience.
Getting to the helicopter location was an experience in itself, with a taxi driver who didn’t know where he was going and ended up taking us to the wrong place to start with, but eventually got us where we needed to be.
Almost as soon as we took off, we got to see Downtown Disney – now knows as Disney Springs. (Still undecided about the name but am sure it will grow on me) – as you can see from the following pictures, there is a massive amount of re-development going on at the moment. This is very apparent when on the ground, but you can get a feel for the scale of it from above.
You can easily make out the massive new parking garage in the top right corner, as well as the ongoing work being done around Planet Hollywood in the centre.
Just across from Disney Springs, we then flew over my favourite water park – Typhoon Lagoon! The huge wave pool and various slides and lazy river etc can all be seen.
We then passed over Caribbean Beach resort, and again, from above you can see just how big some of the hotels and resorts really are. We ate here on the last night of our trip, and I think we counted about 6 or 7 bus stops around this resort alone en-route to the restaurant.
The next park we saw was Hollywood Studios. In the first picture, you can see in the bottom left corner is the area where Fantasmic is shown – this is the water and lights / fireworks show. In the centre is the Hollywood Tower of Terror, with the rest of the park behind.
In the second shot from a different angle, I was amazed just how much of the park is not actually seen by guests – all the backstage area and car parks / office etc.
In this next shot you can see just how close Epcot and Hollywood Studios actually are, separated by a waterway and several Disney resorts, including Swan & Dolphin, Yacht & Beach and Boardwalk. There is a really handy boat service that you can take from Hollywood Studios that goes to the resorts along the route to Epcot.
One of the other things we noticed on our way back to the heliport is just how flat Florida really is – this last shot is heading back to where we started along one of the highways.
If you are in Orlando I would highly recommend giving it a try – we booked with these guys who were brilliant – http://www.orlandohelitours.com
It was a really enjoyable experience to see all the parks from above, but seemed to pass by so quickly. I have been doing a bit of research and have found the next helicopter trip I want to try – an open door photo shoot over New York!! Watch this space 🙂
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