After officially rebranding in 2015, Disney Springs has undergone a series of upgrades, with new landscaping, new shops and restaurants continuing to open up. Guests who visit are typically surprised at the number of things to see, do and explore. When experiencing Disney Springs for the first time, it can be difficult to decide what should be on your must-do list. If you’re planning on heading down while you’re in Walt Disney World, we have put together a list of the 8 things no one tells you about visiting Disney Springs.
While the map seems fairly compact, Disney Springs from East to West contains almost 1 mile of walkways, so guests who are looking to explore several places should expect to walk a lot. Many of the buildings are clustered within the 4 areas, West Side, The Landing, Marketplace and Town Center, but walking from one end to the other can easily take 20 minutes or more. For guests arriving on the WDW Transportation buses, it’s sometimes easier to head straight to the West Side and work your way back East to see all the shops and experience the sights and sounds.
There are a number of entertainment options to choose from when it comes to Disney Springs. Music is a common theme throughout Disney Springs as many musicians play at various venues along the path, from Riverboat Square to Sunshine Highline in the West Side. The House of Blues is famous for its musical acts as guests can enjoy an atmosphere full of excitement and great tunes. Raglan Road is another place to see performers as musicians and the incredibly talented dancers share the stage throughout the evenings.
While there are many shops to explore, there are also lots of other things to do when visiting Disney Springs. Guests can head to Aerophile and hop in a helium balloon where they ascend 400 feet up in the air to enjoy a fantastic view of Walt Disney World. Nearby, guests can also take a tour of in an amphicar next to the Boathouse. Star Wars fans will love experience The VOID located in the Marketplace for an out of this world virtual reality experience like no other. For the kids, a DJ Kids Dance Party takes place during the evening at the Waterside Stage or Fountain Stage in the Marketplace.
5. Quick Service
Dining is great in Disney Springs, with many restaurants to choose from. For guests looking to grab a quick bite to eat, there are several quick service restaurants scattered throughout the area. Bongos Cuban Café serves items like the famous Cuban sandwich, Cookes of Dublin offers Irish fare including the Original One & One (Fish & Chips) and The Express at Wolfgang Puck Grand Café has a selection of specialty sandwiches, soups and wood-fired pizzas. Other fan favorite Quick Service dining includes the famous Earl of Sandwich, home of the Holiday Turkey sandwich with all the fixings; the Smokehouse, which features incredibly delicious smoked meat sandwiches, and four food trucks, each with a flair for great food showcasing wonderful Asian and American inspired dishes.
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4. Make Your Own Snack
Goofy’s Candy Company has been a regular stop for many guests looking to satisfy their sweet tooth. With the walls covered in candy dispensers, you get to choose your favorite candies or mix and match to try several different kinds. Snacks are also baked fresh and on display for you to peruse but some guests overlook an opportunity to design their own snack. Choose from a caramel apple, pretzel rod, marshmallows, crispy rice treats and cookies and then let the endless combinations begin. Dip your treat in white, milk or dark chocolate before choosing a topping from the long list of possibilities including sprinkles, chopped pecans, sliced almonds, mini M&M’s, Reese’s Pieces, coconut and more. After that, a drizzle of your choice of chocolate and your treat is complete.
3. Marketplace Co-op
While each store in Disney Springs offers a different selection of cool and trendy merchandise, the Marketplace Co-op is the place to be if you’re looking for the newest in Disney retail. It’s the testing ground for new designs, shops and products and you can find some truly unique items here that will either become regular merchandise across Walt Disney World or you may never see them again – either way, the Marketplace is a great shop to explore. One of the unique features is D-Tech On Demand, where you can customize a Disney phone case or create a personalized MagicBand featuring a wide variety of characters and attractions.
2. Fine Dining
For guests looking to sit down and enjoy a fine dining experience, Disney Springs has some truly incredible restaurants to choose from. The BOATHOUSE also offers a great selection of seafood as well as delicious land-based fare. The Dining Room at Wolfgang Puck Grand Café is a fusion of Asian flavors in Californian-style dishes. And newer to Disney Springs is Morimoto Asia which offers Pan-Asian cuisine from a menu designed by the Iron Chef himself, Masaharu Morimoto. Regardless of where you end up, you will always find great food in a relaxed atmosphere where you can sit back and enjoy yourself.
1. World of Disney
It’s hard to describe just how large the World of Disney is, but when the building has 13 distinct and separate rooms, you can start to imagine what the world’s largest Disney store looks like. With multiple entrances, character statues and beautifully themed areas, it’s easy to spend a lot of time browsing through all of the Disney merchandise, from clothing and toys to housewares and travel gear. With so much to choose from and free next-day delivery to your Disney resort, it’s hard not to come away with a suitcase stuffed with souvenirs and memories to take home with you.