There is no wrong time of year to visit Walt Disney World, but autumn is special. If you’ve been thinking about making a trip to Central Florida, here are ten reasons why you should drop everything and leave right now. Don’t even pack a bag, you can buy what you need once you get there.
8) Smaller Crowds
Summer crowds are some of the largest each year. The reason is simple, schools are closed and many families want to take the vacation of a lifetime. Once schools across the country are back in session the crowds die down dramatically and the lines are more manageable. While the park hours might be shorter during the fall, you’ll be able to get more done. Shorter park hours also mean that they’ll have more of a chance to get a good night’s sleep, which will help you to have a better time on your vacation.
7) Halloween Decorations
The Halloween decorations at the Magic Kingdom are special. While other places try to scare you, Disney focuses on cute scarecrows and pumpkins shaped like Mickey. If you’ve never seen them, book your trip today.
6) Marketplace Co-Op
Do you like flea markets? If so, you’ll want to check out Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney. While you may not find the bargains that some flea markets are known for, you’ll still discover plenty of items that you will want to take home. You’ll find everything from artwork to smartphone cases and accessories. Marketplace Co-Op is a fun place to browse, and you just might end up with the perfect unique souvenir.
5) Haunted Mansion Merchandise
Speaking of souvenirs, Disney is giving guests a chance to show off their love for The Haunted Mansion. New merchandise featuring the classic ride is now available. You can buy T-shirts based on cast member costumes, walk in style in Haunted Mansion themed shoes, and even decorate your home with a bride and headless groom figurine. There are plenty of items other items to choose from as well. Haunted Mansion lovers will want to check out the new merchandise before Halloween, but they won’t want to put everything away on November 1.
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4) Hotel Deals
During the summer, even the Value Resorts are expensive. In the fall, there are discounts to be found. You might be able to upgrade to a nicer resort, or maybe you can add a few extra days onto your vacation. Fall is a great time to stay on Disney property.
3) Enjoy Both Water Parks
The weather in the fall in Central Florida is still warm, making it the perfect time to hit the water parks. Right now they are both still open. Typhoon Lagoon will be closed October 26-January 3 for its annual refurbishment, Blizzard Beach will follow and be closed January 4-March 14. If you’d like to enjoy both places in one trip, you’re running out of time.
2) Epcot International Food & Wine Festival
The annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival begins on September 19, and it runs through November 10. This year it will be the longest festival yet. You can sample food and beverages that are not normally sold at the park, enjoy a seminar, purchase festival merchandise, and rock out to the Eat to the Beat Concert Series. For 2014 there are new experiences, such as Epcot Food & Wine Late Nights LIVE!. Theme park admission is required, and some activities cost extra. If you’ve never been to the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, 2014 is the year to finally check it out.
1) Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
In many places Halloween has gotten out of hand. It’s become about blood, gore, and scaring people. That is not the case at Walt Disney World. They have the perfect alternative for kids of all ages; Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. On select nights, the Magic Kingdom closes early and the party begins. Dress up and trick or treat with the kids. Enjoy the special fireworks display. Have your picture taken with a classic character dressed in costume, and then watch the parade. This year you can make a reservation for Villains’ Sinister Soiree: A Wicked Takeover of Cinderella Castle. The special event costs $99 over the cost of your admission ticket, and includes a dessert feast at Cinderella’s Royal Table, preferred viewing for the parade and fireworks, and other goodies. Remember that Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is a separate ticketed event and numbers are limited. If you can’t make it to Florida in time for the Halloween Party, remember that Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is right around the corner.