Orlando has long been the epicenter of family fun in the U.S. And, it's recently coming into its own as an adult-friendly destination, too. With an unparalleled selection of theme parks and attractions, it’s no surprise that visitors return year after year to Orlando. Some travelers, however, may be looking for something new and different about Orlando to make a return trip worth their while. If you’re hoping to see what’s new in Orlando for 2019, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ve pulled together our choices for the best new things in Orlando this calendar year, from theme park rides and attractions to restaurants and places to shop. Use it to complement your existing plans, or make a whole new itinerary around these new developments.
Attractions & Theme Park Rides
LEGO® Movie World: LEGOLAND® Florida’s newest area is called Bricksburg, and here you’ll find the immersive world of The LEGO® Movie™ come to life right before your eyes. Rides and attractions in this brand-new area of the park include Masters of Flight, a triple-decker flying couch, Unikitty’s Disco Drop, a bouncing, spinning wonder, and the soaking wet Battle of Bricksburg. There’s even a new toy and gift shop in this region, plus a tasty taqueria. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge: Set to open in late fall 2019 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this exciting new Star Wars installation is set on the planet Batuu. In this remote landscape, visitors can enjoy two all-new signature attractions: Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run, which gives guests the opportunity to get a seat in the cockpit of the franchise’s most famous ship, and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, which helps visitors escape from The First Order in an exhilarating battle scene. Sesame Street @ SeaWorld Orlando: Having opened just this spring, the new Sesame Street attraction at SeaWorld is your child’s favorite show (and likely yours!) brought to life. You can walk down Sesame Street itself, see the stoop at 123, scope out Hooper’s Store, and then head to Big Bird’s Nest. All your favorite characters will be there, introducing their own rides like Cookie Monster’s Cookie Drop, Abby’s Flower Tower, Ernie’s Rubber Duckie Water Works, and Elmo’s Choo Choo Train. Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure™: Found in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal’s Islands of Adventure, this all-new ride debuts mid-June 2019. An exciting roller coaster ride that’s even bigger and better than its predecessor, this coaster swoops you out to the Forbidden Forest, far beyond the grounds of Hogwarts Castle to search for magical creatures. It’s a delightful complement to the robust Harry Potter offerings already in place at Universal. Dezerland Action Park: While the entire park is not yet open, it’s envisioned to be a massive play space where visitors can race go-karts, bumble around in bumper cars, play laser tag, bowl, enjoy tasty food and drink, and generally enjoy “Florida’s largest indoor entertainment complex.” The most recent part to open, slated for Spring 2019, is the Orlando Auto Museum, which is comprised of one of the most extensive privately-owned collections of automobiles and related objects in the world. See everything from Batmobiles and Vespas to military vehicles and James Bond-worthy cars.
Restaurants & Retail Shopping
Proper & Wild: This high-end Winter Park offering focuses on plant-based cuisine, offering a selection of chic offerings that even non-vegheads will yearn for. You’ll find everything from a sourdough flatbread (non-vegan) to a spicy makhani curry for those with resilient taste buds. Check out their weekend brunch for some extra special offerings. Sette: A crave-worthy new option from the team that brought you Se7en Bites, this Ivanhoe Village newcomer is an Italian restaurant that’s anything but ordinary. Enjoy sumptuous home-made pastas, pizza made from scratch, “pot-roast” risotto, and plenty of seafood. Trust us—you’ll want to save room for dessert. À La Cart: A permanent food truck park, this 10,000+ square foot outdoor venue boasts a wide selection of mouth-watering cuisine from empanadas to poke to Vietnamese-Korean food. You’ll also find an indoor bar with 15 taps featuring everything from local craft beer and wine to cold brew coffee. Come here for a casual lunch. Tori Tori Japanese Pub: It’s hard to think of a more exciting concept than the one promised by Tori Tori, slated to open this summer. They’ll offer traditional Japanese fare—including sushi—with the modern twist that chef Sonny Nguyen is best known for. Head to the Mills 50 district to check them out. Hopdoddy Burger Bar: Now open on I-Drive (right near the WonderWorks, for those of you looking to feed and entertain kids), Hopdoddy Burger Bar is a chain that originates in Texas. They offer fat burgers, perfectly-salted fries, rich shakes, and plenty of beer and cocktails. It’s an affordable yet sleek option for those looking for something fast and tasty. The NBA Experience: Located in Disney Springs®, this new immersive store will feature everything and anything a die-hard basketball fan could desire. Enjoy interactive games and competitions plus plenty of gear for purchase. Pick up the new Anthony Davis jersey later this year—whichever team he ends up with!
Looking to save on new Orlando attractions?
If you’d like to build any of these new attractions into your Orlando vacation itinerary, consider adding a Go Orlando pass to your vacation plans. You can save up to 50% on combined admission to top attractions, including LEGOLAND® and many others. Save some money on ticketed attractions, and then spend a little on that hot new restaurant.
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