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Why Living Near Disney World Represents Endless Enjoyments

When we first put it out there that we wanted to live in Florida, a HUGE factor being able to visit Disney World any time we wanted, was no surprise to any of our close friends and family.  I am still positive to this day that if I had had an ultrasound picture of myself as a fetus, I would have been wearing Mouse ears and a Disney T-Shirt.  (And all of you Disney friends KNOW your picture would have been the same!).  So when we finally did move here, over 2 years ago, we already knew before we stepped foot on FL soil that there would be so much to do – and I am here to tell you all WHAT I have found to be the most rewarding and amazing to this day. Enjoy!24-31

Why on Earth would you want to live near a Theme Park? For those who have asked me this, and it has come up from time to time, I try to explain that Disney World isn’t a “theme park” as much as a it’s own cool little city.   If you moved next to Sea World, Universal, or heaven forbid, a Six Flags, you have THAT Park to enjoy and usually that’s it.  Now I know some of have expanded to other areas of interest, such as Water Parks and the latter, but none that I know of that have the amount of Resorts, Nightlife, Shopping, and other Recreational ADDITIONAL to the FOUR Parks that make up Walt Disney World.   I do enjoy Sea World and Universal from time to time, but Disney World has something for everyone along with the pixie dust factor that keeps us all coming back.

In my mind, back in WI during the planning stages, I would imagine hopping in the car and heading to a Park after dinner.  I had NO IDEA what more there was to experience, because before it was vacation time and it was “get it done”- there was no walking around aimlessly with no goal. I have had MORE fun just meandering through the Parks, soda in my hand and some song in my head, than I ever had planning strategically a full day on vacation.  It’s that whole “no pressure” feeling.

Let’s talk the Parks first.  Sometimes people get the impression that if you are a local, you are in them every day, all day.  Unless you are THE Brent Dodge, most us are in and out and find something of particular interest to enjoy.  I will wake up one day and think “I’m going to go on a Safari today” and I do. The next I’ll want to go to Munchkinland and live some nostalgia, so I enjoy the “Great Movie Ride.”  If I want to just enjoy the ambience of a Park, I will pick out my favorite spot and sit with a fun drink and take pictures or people watch.  I still get excited when we drive down World Drive, because I know deep in my heart that I am VERY lucky to have this life and that I am blessed to share it with others.

We recently needed a new tire, and you have no idea how tickled pink I was when we had it fixed at the Triple A Car Center near the Magic Kingdom on Disney Property.   I mean, come on, how cool is it on Disney Property?  If we want to kennel the dogs, we can do it at the Disney Pet Care Center!   I used to watch movies at “Regal” in WI, now we watch them in Downtown Disney.  Do you know how CRAZY it is to us to walk out after a movie, and hear Disney music playing, see the crowds, smell the great food? It is just so awesome.

At any time, I can ride a train, see a Broadway style show, or fly over London.  I can visit Pirates one day, Bears the next, and Ghosts on another.  I can dance among lanterns, go under the sea, or fly with elephants.  I can go back in time and visit Dinosaurs, or ride a mission into Space.  I can be an extra on a Movie Set, audition for American Idol, or take an Animation class.  I can safari with giraffes, lions, and white rhinos and then visit a forest full of Gorillas.  I can visit Countries from all over the World, speed on a race track, or fly on Aladdins carpets.  I can get a Danish at the bakery in France, egg rolls in China for lunch, and eat dinner under the stars at Sci-Fi.  I can ride horses at Fort Wilderness, take a boat ride from any of the Water side Resorts, or go to Lua at the Poly.  I know, I could go on for many more paragraphs- the point is that there is SO MUCH to do here that I wasn’t able to experience back in WI.

Our quality of life has shot through the roof since moving here and it is because our opportunities and horizons have limitless boundaries.  If you had enough of the Parks, head to a Resort, and if you had enough there, you head to Downtown Disney.  Every Park and Resort offers something special and unique, so that once you did them all (which will take some time) you find what you really enjoy and then repeat it as much as you can!   I’ve had my moments where I had enough, but it usually lasts for a couple of days, and then I’m back in a Park because I just LOVE my Disney.

Hubby and I took an evening to ourselves tonight- we enjoyed dinner, a walk around All-Star Movies, and then a drive all around Disney Property.  When we are together on Property, we never stop smiling.  Even after 2 years, we still can’t get over how amazing God has been to us in this crazy dream we had.  Go after what you love, whether it is Disney World or something else- it doesn’t have to be popular opinion, only yours is what matters in the end.

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Going from “What If? to “Why Not” is my life motto and I work hard at living that every day. I share everything from moving to Florida to live near Disney World to road trips across the States. I love the cool, quirky, and crazy stuff that I can find on my Adventures, and every dollar you donate helps support my efforts and hard work. Thank you to ALL who support me!

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17 Comments »

  1. Amy, you’re always so inspirational to me, and this article is PERFECT. Our move is now officially less than a year away, and I cannot wait to have all of the experiences you mention. Keep on living the dream!

  2. Hello, awesome article. I am new to your blog so may have missed this, but are you Vacation Club members?

  3. Amy I love reading your blogs, as you are living the dream that I cant live! Sadly being a Brit gives us a much bigger hurdle and Im not in a position to jump it. I do however have a vacation planned for this December and I am SO excited to return after 6 long years away!! Smiling from ear to ear right now 🙂

  4. What a great article! I am more inspired than ever to live out my dreams of living in Florida and being able to visit WDW at any time that I want.

  5. This post is so timely for me and my family. On Monday we will make the drive down to become Florida residents! I’ve followed your blog for a couple of years and knew that one day we would want to head to Florida, so, when the opportunity arose, we decided to take it. Our 10 year old daughter is thrilled we will be so close to WDW even though we are moving closer to the Ocala area. But having Disney less than 2 hours away-wow! I’m so glad to read that you guys are really enjoying your central Florida adventure,

    • This sounds much like what I’d like to do. I’m already a lifelong Florida resident, but we’re up near Tallahassee, so we have a four- to five-hour drive to get to WDW. We can go a few times a year, but what I’d REALLY like is to be somewhere near Tampa (I have friends who live there) or Ocala. I’d like to be close enough that I could do day trips, but still far enough away to build up some anticipation along the way and keep it from being commonplace. But I don’t think it is going to happen anytime in the foreseeable future; my wife was in favor of it at one time, but now she wants to stay where we are. Still, we can go far more often than most people (and far less expensively), and we still get Florida Resident annual passes, so I can’t complain very loudly.

  6. For those of you living near WDW what are some nice neighborhoods to reside in that are less than 1 hour away? My 11 year old daughter is always checking for homes that are for sale in Orlando but we are not familiar with the area.

    • We live in Winter Park. It’s about 45 minutes east of Disney. But, we’ve gotten there quicker when traffic is good on I-4. Winter Park is a very nice, place to live. With good schools, a lovely shopping/dining district, museums…

  7. I read this article with a smile on my face and a tear in my eye. You hit the nail on the head. The experiences you described are exactly why I want to move to FL to live near Disney World. I have to admit that I was worried that I might get bored. But now I know that won’t happen! Thanks for renewing my faith that I can and will move to Orlando!

  8. Loved this article, Amy! It’s so true. We are a little further out than you guys but, Disney is still our stomping grounds for most things. Especially DTD and the AMC there.