Mari’s Blog

funkos
A store for geek lovers in Orlando

Planing to stay in a Orlando vacation rentals? Besides the possibility to bring your own video-game to play at the house, you will find the best places to buy your geek articles.

The “geek” universe is a vast world to explore in Orlando, but certainly your trip begins with the Coliseum of Comics a true paradise for comic lovers. The best place to buy comics, games, toys super heroes and everything related to the most exciting series of TV!

As there is a Coliseum of Comics near my home in Orlando, I decided to research new acquisitions for my collection of Funkos (I’m passionate about dolls and I’m addicted to collect those cute ones ♥).

The variety of articles is impressive. There are comics from all over the world, themed shirts, action figuresof all types, buttons and all that a good geek can dream of.

The prices are not high and I can say that my Funkos here had the best price I found: U $ 9.90 each. I found a video on youtube that helps a lot to feel the environment ;) Check it out bellow:

The Coliseum of Comics has a lot of stores in Florida, just choose and make a trip to the geek world:

3159 W. Vine St. (US Hwy. 192)
Kissimmee, FL 34741
407-870-5322

121 S. Kentucky Ave.
Lakeland, FL   33801
863-686-1350

19402 Bruce B. Downs Blvd.
Tampa, FL   33647
813-528-8758

4672 Millenia Plaza Way
Orlando, FL   32839
407-363-7676

3201 E. Colonial Drive M-11
Orlando, FL   32803
407-228-1210

177 Towne Center Circle
Sanford, FL   32771
407-324-1800

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Halloween-Horror-Nights
Universal Orlando announces details of Halloween Horror Nights

Tourists thinking to stay at Orlando vacation rentals between September and October can now plan a visit to experience the Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando Resort. Consistently rated as the best Halloween United States, it is known for terrorizing hundreds of thousands of people all over the world.

This year’s Halloween Horror Nights returns to Universal Studios Florida in September with a record of 31 nights – and new content that will bring to life unimaginable horrors, from 16 September to 31 October. The dire minds of award-winning Universal’s entertainment team work throughout the year to create an intense experience that visitors will never forget.

As soon as the gates of Halloween Horror Nights are open, visitors become “victims” immersed in iconic horror movies, terrifying success of TV shows and original stories popping. Visitors will find threatening characters that chase each step, haunted houses amazingly designed to bring your worst nightmares to the surface and live shows breathtaking.

Plus – when you need a break from screaming – will enjoy the rides and popular attractions of Universal Studios throughout the night. Are you gonna survive? Visitors can already buy tickets for the Halloween Horror Nights Universal Orlando through their travel agents.

You can purchase the Halloween Horror Nights Add-On combo that lets you add the ticket Halloween Horror Nights to regular admission to the theme parks of Universal Orlando for only $ 59. This offer is valid on any day from Sunday to Friday on event nights.

Tickets for the parks of Universal Orlando Resort with Halloween Horror Nights start at US $ 278.99 per adult plus tax. For more information, visit: www.HalloweenHorrorNights.com/Orlando.

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orlando-relax
5 Travel tips in Orlando to relax out of the theme parks

Who said that Orlando is only theme Parks, like Disney and Universal? The city keeps amazing places for those who want to escape from this busy route. Tourists seeking quiet and different locations can choose the city as a destination and might have an unforgettable trip. Bellow are some tips for those who plan to rent a vacation house in Orlando and put those places on the schedule to check closely.

Airboat tour

The tour takes tourists to the flooded areas of Lake Kissimmee, south of Orlando. The place is the natural habitat of many species of fish and birds, and alligators. The boat with huge turbines take tourists for an unforgettable adventure.

True Blue Winery

The winery located in Davenport, southwest of Orlando, is a great choice for those seeking a more romantic walk. In addition, visitors will experience the wine production process and to enjoy a taste of this wonderful drink.

Bok Tower Gardens

This beautiful garden is located in Lake Wales, between Tampa and Orlando, home to hundreds of species of plants worldwide. Founded by Dutch immigrant Edward W. Bok, in 1929, the place also has a huge tower with his name – Bok Tower – which, despite being closed to visitors, in some late moments visitors can listen to the music emitted by their bells. Perfect for those seeking peace and serenity. Ideal for meditation.

Balloon Ride

Flying above Orlando in a balloon and enjoying the landscape and Florida’s sunrise, it’s probably one of the most romantic and unforgettable tours of the trip. The one-hour flight over the forests, lakes and wetlands will provide magical moments. Just wake up early and get carried away by the wind direction. Two local companies promote the ride.

Wekiwa Springs State Park

Near the head of the Wekiwa River, one hour from Orlando, the beautiful view in this park worth the ride. Relax, enjoy a picnic, the park offers visitors the opportunity to spend the day in a quiet environment, or walk its trails, biking or horseback riding. Canoes and kayaks are available for those more adventurous. A complete area with facilities for camping can also be an option to enjoy longer period at the place.

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What you need to know about WonderWorks, the museum designed to look as it dropped upside down

For those who study to stay in a Disney’s Vacation Rentals and are planning the places to visit, through the International Drive, in one of the main points of Orlando, it is impossible not notice a particular house. WonderWorks, a curious indoor interactive museum that was built entirely upside down.

The museum say that the house was an ancient and secret science lab located on a remote island in the Bermuda Triangle. An experiment among the world’s top scientists, led by Professor Wonder, aimed at creating a tornado within the laboratory itself.

Something went wrong and this made involved the house and threw thousands of kilometers, falling on top of a warehouse brick in Orlando. Despite all the travel distance, the experiments inside the house continued to function, intact.

Legends aside, the reality is that most WonderWorks attractions are related to science, but the museum also offers a lot of interactive games and toys for all ages. The WonderWorks is divided into 6 attractions: Natural Disasters, Physical Challenge, Light & Sound, Space Discovery, Imagination Lab and Far Out art gallery (in addition to the art gallery).

As soon as visitors enter the house, the first attraction they find is the Earthquake Cafe, a type of 5.3 earthquake on the Richter scale, where everyone has to sit on the floor. Soon after, more natural fenónemos. Another room with Hurricane Shack, simulates a hurricane.

The feeling is to experience winds up to 115 kilometers per hour. More experiences await guests, such as How Cold Is It ?, where they can experience what it was like cold seawater at the time of the Titanic sinking.

By placing the hand in a closed box with water less than 2 degrees, a stopwatch will mark the time each person stand cold size. On another floor of the house has the impressive Bed of Nails, a bed of nails where everyone can realize that curiosity bedtime and feel it hurts or not. The answer is no”.

Already the Wonder Coaster is a virtual roller coaster, where the passenger enters a kind of centrifugal. So for the ‘strong stomach’. There is also a cabin for observing the behavior of water in zero gravity, very interesting, and more adventures in the Indoor Ropes Course, a trail to be crossed hanging by ropes, and attached to the ceiling by a seat belt.

Craziest experiences how to make colored balls and giant soap bubble in the Lab, play with his own shadow, piano stepping on the keys, enjoy interactive games, expect a lot of visitors for interactive fun. More than 100 attractions that will delight children and adducts.

The museum is open every day of the week, and two or three hours you can enjoy and know almost everything it offers. It’s a great option for a late afternoon, it is open from 9am until 00h.

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Disney Ticket
What you need to know about Disney’s new ticket pricing

Last saturday (27th february), Walt Disney World announced a change in ticket’s prices, according to the periods of high and low season. What you need to know about Disney’s new ticket pricing is that the tickets now have different prices – will be more expensive at the high season and cheaper on days with less visitants.

If you are planning the next trip to Disney and studying rent a Orlando vacation rentals to save, also keep an eye on spending on tickets. This change aims to encourage visitors to travel to Orlando at different times of the year, avoiding crowds, long lines, and even temporary closure of the parks when the capacity is exhausted.

Plus, for this period, we are entering (starting from february 28/2016), considered “low season”, a day at the Magic Kingdom will cost $ 105 dollars. In “normal” days will cost $ 110 dollars and the busiest days of the holiday, $ 124 dollars.

At Disneyland in California, a price for a ticket admission to the park is $ 95, $ 105 and $ 119 dollars, in-season, regular season or high season, respectively. Before the ticket had single price of $ 99.

For those who don’t know, low season is the period of the first half between months of March to May, as well as the second half, from August to November. The “high season” includes months of January, February, June, July and December.

Also, before scheduling the trip, it is good to keep an eye on American holidays, dates the parks receive a large number of local visitors. Just keep an eye on the dream of visiting Disney now fits in your pocket.

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Florida beats the record of 105 million tourists in 2015

You, who had rent a Disney vacation home in Orlando last year, are part of a record. Last February 18th, Governor Rick Scott announced that Florida broke the record of 105 million tourists in 2015. According to Visit Florida, this is the fifth consecutive year that the state reaches the record in tourism, surpassing the number of 2014 is 98.5 million.

The average number of jobs related to tourism in 2015 also reached its record with 1,199,200 employed people – 4.7 percent higher than the same period last year. “Tourism plays an important role in supporting our economy, and we will continue to make strategic investments in the sector to keep Florida on the right track in order to make the state better,” said Scott Governor speaking at Walt Disney World in Orlando.

“As tourism record for five consecutive years, it is time to set an even higher goal, and I look forward to receive 115 million visitors to the Sunshine State this year,” added the governor. Visit Florida estimates that a record 89.8 million domestic visitors who traveled to Florida in 2015 are a reflection of the increase of 8% in 2014.

Total shipments in the 18 airports in Florida in 2015 increased 8.2% over the previous year, representing a number of 6.1 million passengers more than in 2014. Estimates also show that 11.2 million foreign visitors and 4 million Canadians came to the state of Florida last year.

Will Seccombe, President and CEO of Visit Florida, believes that five years of visitation record does not just happen. “It is the direct result of an overall marketing strategy focused on maximizing the Florida tourism. Today’s announcement shows tourism marketing jobs and have to thank Scott, Governor and Florida Legislature for their leadership and support incomparable to put the State of Florida on track to become the destination number 1 for world turism. ”

Bob Chapek, chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, said: “As we are home to the most popular theme park in the world, we are delighted to contribute to the record number of visitors in Florida – and the jobs and economic opportunities that tourism helps to create.”

Taxable sales of tourism and entertainment for Florida increased each month and year, from January to November 2015 (month last record reported), an increase of 8.6% over the same period in 2014. For 2015, the average daily rate ( ADR) rose 5.9% and the number of rooms booked increased 4.5% compared to 2014.

The average occupancy rate of Florida for 2015 was 3.2% of 2014 to 72% in 2015. This is a record year for the occupancy rate, surpassing the previous which was up 69.8%.

John Tomlin, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Visit Florida, adds: “Achieving record visitation for five years, including 105 million visitors in 2015, is a testament to the strong industry alignment with our marketing and tourism partners. Thanks to the visionary support of Scott governor, we have built a solid foundation that will achieve our goal of generating $ 100 billion in tourism in 2020. ”

For the fourth quarter of 2015, estimates show a record thata 25.2 million people visited the state of Florida. This represents the largest fourth quarter of visitation that Florida has ever seen and reflects an increase of 6.7% over the same period in 2014.

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security
Orlando Parks have new security measures this year

For those who are planning to rent a vacation home in Orlando and enjoy the theme parks, you don’t have to worry about the security of those places anymore. Recently, Disney in Florida and California have announced a reinforcement of the security in  theme parks, including the prohibition to even toy guns.

Universal and SeaWorld parks also confirmed that they are taking similar measures to further protect the tourists. Disney parks confirmed that they are installing metal detectors and hiring more security guards with trained dogs. In addition to the ban on toy guns, shopkeepers are removing from its shelves those items, including water pistols.

A company official’s statement says: “We are continually reviewing our overall approach to security and implementing additional measures, as we find it necessary.” The Universal Studios also added metal detectors in Orlando parks, Florida and Hollywood, California. “We want our guests to feel protected when they are in our parks,” added the official Universal.

SeaWorld Orlando is also increasing their security at the entrance of the park during this holiday period. Officials told Fox News that “Visitors who enter the SeaWorld Orlando can expect thorough search and metal detector checks.”

None of the parks say exactly how long this increase in security would last. The announcements were made after the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California, that killed 14 workers during a Christmas party. It took into account also the terrorist threat to school districts across the country, although not all are considered reliable.

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seaworlds
SeaWorld announces new pricing structure and drops weekend ticket price

Those who want to rent a Disney vacation homes in 2016 and take advantage to visit SeaWorld Orlando, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Aquatica in Orlando and Tampa Bay Adventure Island can now choose from a variety of adventures combined with new prices for 2016 tickets.

This flexibility allows customers to customize their itinerary making it more economical, according to your pocket and the number of parks to be visited. More parks you choose, cheaper becomes the ticket.

The “Choose Your Adventure” novelty simplifies the planning of holidays and guests can enjoy several visits by creating your own script, including the four most popular theme parks in Florida. When tickets are purchased in advance, special prices are more advantageous. See below:

A visit to any park – $ 79

Two visits to any of the parks – $ 99

Three visits to any of the parks – $ 109

A new entry also provides 14 consecutive days of unlimited adventure for all four parks, with free parking on each, at a price of $ 139.

There are also new values to the residents of Florida, as annual passes and incentives for the purchase earlier this year. With the annual pass, visitors have unlimited access throughout the year at SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, with free parking, no blackout dates and extra benefits. A good reason to buy a vacation house in Orlando.

This year, the pass provides exclusive offers for the 12 months, as discounts, tickets to all atractions and special gifts. With EZ Pay, the price of annual passes starting at just $ 14 per month for a park, and $ 18 per month for both parks.

In addition, SeaWorld Orlando has the “Preschool Card” – for a limited time, the park will offer to children up to five years, a valid card for unlimited access to December 31, 2016. The cards must be registered online and redeemed in park until May 27, 2016.

Already Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Adventure Island has the “BOGO Fun Card” – visitors who purchase the ‘fun card’ to Busch Gardens also receive the ‘FREE Fun Card’ for Adventure Island.

To stay on top of new tickets, prices and everything they offer advantage, just visit the website or SeaWorldOrlando.com BuschGardensTampa.com, or follow the news daily by social networks BuschGardens and SeaWorld on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Beautiful pool, rent is house in Orlando Playground
4 nice suburban towns around Orlando to visit this spring

Orlando attractions and rides are not limited only to Disney parks. The region has a lot of sights, leisure and entertainment spread everywhere , including in neighboring towns. If you plan to stay in an Orlando vocation home rental, it’s worth paying attention and taking the time, or even stretch the trip, to visit them. Are tours that will enrich the trip and make it more complete and diversified. Let’s see some of them below?

Celebration

celebration

Celebration is a small district close to Orlando, opened in 1996 and originally belonged to the Walt Disney Company, before becoming independent. A place of dreams, well organized, very charming, full of trees with beautiful colonial-style houses, restaurants, cafes, shops, a lake and a beautiful square center, delicious to take a walk on a beautiful afternoon. A winter is famous to receive the northern residents of the United States. The region there is also some of the country’s best golf courses.

Winter Park

winter-park

A typical American community , Winter Park is located in north of Downtown Orlando. On Saturdays the famous fair, Farmer ‘s Market, welcomes locals to buy fruits, vegetables and flowers, and take their pets to a walk. The entire region has pleasant places to see, which are worth the visit. Ideal for families with children.

Cocoa Beach

cocoa-beach

 

Less than an hour from Orlando, the beautiful beach with its own waves to practice surf receive a lot of surfers from all the United States. It’s an excellent choice to spend a different day, and also, after the beach, visit a lot of shops with a big variety of cool items.

St. Petersburg

St-Petersburg
Another city that is worth visiting, close to Orlando, is St. Petersburg. Besides the beautiful view of the Gulf of Mexico, the Salvador Dali Museum is a special attraction for tourists. Located by the sea, it’s the second largest collection of the surrealist painter. The location is ideal to spend the day and indicated for a more adult audience.

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How to spend less money on a Disney trip; from orlando vacation rentals to tickets

Despite ticket prices of Orlando theme parks are a bit salty, travelers who are planning the Disney trip don’t need to change the fate cause of the tight budget. Some tips on how to spend less on a trip to Orlando can be very valuable to reduce the cost of the dream to meet the Mickey Mouse’s kingdom. Among them – arrange the trip in low season, think about the possibility of Orlando vacation rentals, make food at home, avoid purchases in the theme parks, and others.

To start, choose to travel in a low season. Orlando is very crowded in December and January, and between June and August. If you choose between these months, you will find a better city where you might enjoy the weather, it’s less crowded and the prices are much better also.

Many items are much cheaper in Orlando than in other cities in America, such as Miami, Los Angeles and New York, including hosting. There are many options, for example, the visitor renting a property, whether with the family or with a group of friends. In addition, money that you spend on shopping and dining can be reduced if well planned.

It’s very simple. Make a good buy in the local supermarket and always take your snack to the rides and parks. There is a lot of frozen options and prepackaged foods that will make life easier in the kitchen. Orlando supermarkets sell everything from food to home appliances. Walmart is always a deal, with very cool prices. For those who want to eat out, the best option are always the fast food chains that have Dollar Menu, like McDonald’s or Burger King. Of course this is not such a healthy choice, but for those who want to save is a great choice.

Also avoid buying in the shops of the parks, they are very expensive. Let to buy in department stores and supermarkets. They are crammed with souvenirs and items of Disney, with much lower prices. Take a shopping list and put a limit to these expenses.

Be careful to not get carried away of Orlando outlets. They are the greatest temptation to bust the budget. Do not forget to use coupons while shopping. Try to cast doubt on this issue even before the trip. Download the apps that will be used during the trip on your phone or tablet.

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