wizarding world of harry potterThis is the third post in a three-part series on Orlando vacation
tips from Cool Mom Picks.

We know that for some parents, an Orlando trip is something you do once in a lifetime. But for some, it’s something you do once in a while. Or maybe even once a year. (Unless you actually live in Orlando, in which case we’d imagine you’re there quite a bit, huh.)

Of course every trip can be a different trip because there’s just so much darn stuff to do there. But there are a lot of new, cool things to do that you might not have experienced just yet.

Give into Harry Potter Mania
Of course first on our list to try, is the new Wizarding World of Harry
Potter area at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. We hear the rides are
phenomenal, Hogwarts Castle looks like it came right out of the books,
and shops like Honeydukes and Ollivanders are just as fun as the rides.

Get water logged
The new Coco Key Hotel and Water Resort is an off-park hotel near
Universal–that’s also an indoor water park. Orlando can be chilly in
the winter, so it’s a good option if your kids just have to get their
swim time in. Don’t worry, no water beds.

Catch some rays

We’re dying to go on the new Manta roller coaster at SeaWorld, which has
you swooping face down, like a manta ray. It also takes you over an
“ocean” display featuring more than 300 rays, which you can enter even
if you’re coaster-averse.


In 2011, the largest LEGOLAND in the world is coming to the old Cyprus
Gardens location, filled with 40 million LEGO bricks. We know a few kids
who are going to be thrilled about that.

Get an aerial view
At Downtown Disney, you can now go up in a huge balloon called
“Characters in Flight” for an awesome view of Disney and beyond, 40
stories in the air. It’s not cheap though–tickets are $18 for adults
and $12 for kids 3-9 for a six minute ride. But we hear on a clear day,
you can see Cape Canaveral. Sounds good to us.

star tours 3-DDrive a Starspeeder 3000 through the Boonta Eve Podrace

Star Wars geeks (including a few right here at Cool Mom Picks) are
overjoyed about the new Star Tours adventure in 3-D that’s opening in
2011 at Disney Hollywood Studios. This motion simulator ride looks
pretty fun, whether or not you know what a Boonta Eve Podrace even means.

Do you know anything new and cool going on in Orlando to share with
our readers? Have you done anything cool that’s a little off the beaten
path? Let us know

Cool Mom Picks is delighted to be partnering with our sponsor, the
Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau for this 3-part series. Find more
about Orlando or plan your Orlando vacation at VisitOrlando.com

And see our first post: Orlando Money Saving Tips here.
See our second post: Tips for the 5 and under set here.