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Downtown Disney is Now Disney Springs

Disney Springs Illustration

Thanks to the official name change, we can finally put our Downtown Disney related confusion to rest— It’s officially called Disney Springs, ladies and gents. The name isn’t the only thing that has changed: Disney Springs is nearly twice as large as Downtown Disney, and a plethora of new shops and restaurants have either opened or are in the works.

ORLANDO TOURIST TIP: Be sure to read our complete guide to Disney Springs before you set off to visit this Orlando shopping attraction.

For visitors that are unfamiliar with Disney and all of its offerings, Disney Springs is one of the few properties accessible with no theme park tickets or reservations required. Guests are free to walk around and explore, experiencing Disney Springs however they want— whether that means souvenir shopping, fine dining, or some casual family fun (bowling, anyone?)! Some of the new shops and restaurants are already opened, and business is booming— what foodie wouldn’t be curious about the dining at Morimoto, Disney Springs’ new pan-Asian restaurant from Iron Chef’s Masaharu Morimoto himself?

While construction is much more manageable now than it has been in the past months (parking is finally back on track with the recent completion of the “smart” parking garage, which tells guests how many spots are available on each level), visitors should expect to see some walls up as Disney continues developing the four, distinctive sections that will eventually make up Disney Springs. With parking availability and massive construction finally at manageable levels, the real hassle is the masses of people flocking to see the new and improved entertainment hub!

With shops and restaurants opening day and night, Disney Springs is a great option for all different types of visitors. With dining, shopping, and kid-friendly activities available on site, guests are bound to find something fun to do at this Orlando attraction. Whether you’re hitting Ghirardelli’s for ice cream or taking the classic hot air balloon out for a spin, both old and new aspects of Disney Springs will leave you with memories you won’t soon forget.

Spotlight: DisneyQuest

DisneyQuest is a 1-of-a-kind indoor, interactive gaming experience.  Enjoy 5 floors of state-of-the-art technology and 3D encounters.  And, since it is indoors, you can enjoy a nice break from the hot sun or possible inclement weather.

Some of the highlights include Pirates of the Caribbean, Battle for Buccaneer Gold, where you are captain of your own ship!  You get to fire cannons at enemy buccaneers and race for gold treasure.  (Must be 35” tall to ride)

Then there’s CyberSpace MountainBill Nye the Science Guy will help you design your own virtual roller coaster!  Then, you actually get to ride your creation in a full motion simulator, woo hoo!  Hope your stomach can handle it!  (Must be 51” tall to ride.)

You can also battle super villians as you fly through a virtual reality comic book in Ride the Comix or fly around Agrabah to find the magic lamp and save the Genie on Aladdin’s Magic Carpet Ride.

Pilot your own futuristic bumper car in Buzz Lightyear’s Astroblasters! Battle the bad guys by scooping up “asteroids,” loading them into your blaster, and firing away at the other cars (must be 51” tall to ride).

Always wanted to be an artist?  At the Animation Academy, an instructor helps you try your hand at Disney animation.  See how creative you can be!

Be sure to check out the Virtual Jungle Cruise, where you take a virtual river raft ride in the Dinosaur age. Watch out for dangerous obstacles and 4-D effects!

Hours of operation are:
Sunday – Thursday: 11:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Friday – Saturday: 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

Price is $35-$41 and is located at Downtown Disney, west side.

For more information about Disney Quest, visit their web site, or type in ‘Disney Quest’ in our search (top right) to read more articles about this theme park. Feel free to leave a response below about your visit to Disney Quest and share your tips and experience!