Visiting Disney World with my family has to be one of my favorite vacations that we have done a few times now. We love seeing all of the new developments. So I was thrilled to sit in on the Parks and Resorts Panel at the D23 Expo 2015 this weekend. In case you haven’t heard some amazing things are in the work, including Hollywood Studios getting a makeover!
You can also check out my other coverage from D23 Expo including the slate from Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar!
D23 Expo 2015 Parks and Resorts: Toy Story Land, Star Wars Land, Avatar Land, Oh My!
There were some amazing announcements made including the development of a new Toy Story Land and Star Wars Land at Disney World in Orlando. Star Wars Land will also make it’s debut in Anaheim, California as well.
I have to admit I might have been a bit flustered after these announcements. Disney World is going to become an even more amazing place to visit with family. Here are some of the details I learned!
Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios
I have to admit that this is the park development that I’m most excited about! It will be a new addition to Disney’s Hollywood Studios and here’s what we know so far:
- It will cover 11 acres
- Guests will “shrink” down to toy size
- It will be like entering Andy’s backyard as a toy
- There will be a Slinky Dog roller coaster
- Toy Story Mania will get a third track
- The Claw and the Green Aliens will be part of a new attraction
- Different Toy Story characters will be available for meet & greets
Sounds like an amazing addition that I know my family will love! Our Disney World vacations are some of my favorite memories so when they were showing sketches of these ideas, I got a little giddy. I felt just like a kid again!
Star Wars Land
This is one that I know a lot of people will be excited about, my family and friends included!
Star Wars Land will be coming to both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland. Check out these amazing details we know about now:
- Everything will be “in-story” including different characters that will interact with guests
- There will be both new and old characters
- Star Tours will be upgraded with a new destination from Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens
- There will be a Star Wars Launch Bay
- Jedi Academy will be updated
And if you can’t wait that long, in early 2016 the parks will be taken over by Star Wars: Season of Force. The celebration will include entertainment, food, characters, and music. Space Mountain will become HyperSpace Mountain! When they announced all of these new ideas for the parks at D23 Expo 2015, the energy in the room made it almost vibrate. This is going to be a well-loved addition to the parks!
Avatar Land at Animal Kingdom
The Avatar themed land is called Pandora: The World of Avatar. We got to hear from Avatar director, James Cameron, and learned just how immersive this new addition to the Animal Kingdom will be! It will include a flight attraction called Flight of Passage that sounds absolutely stunning.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom will be seeing more changes as well! These will transform the park at night! Check them out!
- Extended Kilimajaro Safaris featuring new African wild dogs and hyenas
- Rivers of Light nighttime spectacular
Frozen Ever After
And if you’re a fan of a little movie called Frozen, then you’ll be happy to know that Maelstrom at EPCOT is being replaced by Frozen Ever After, a Frozen-themed attraction. Part of the project involves expanding the Norway pavilion as well. There will be a next level dark ride for kids of all ages! And we got to see a little sneak of the creation of an animatronic Sven! So cute!
So the next few years at the Disney World Resort and Disneyland sound like they are going to be full of transformation and excitement! I love that Disney isn’t afraid to dream it and then go after it!
And check out this fun recap of the entire presentation!