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Jurassic Park River Adventure

Visiting one of Florida's many theme parks during the summer is the only chance for many to experience world-renowned attractions, thrilling rides, and unforgettable entertainment. However, the Sunshine State's summer season brings its own set of challenges that can impact enjoyment and comfort. 

From managing the intense heat and frequent thunderstorms to navigating large crowds, here are five factors to consider to ensure your trip is enjoyable. 

1.WATER, WATER, WATER 

Volcano Bay
Image: Universal

Dehydration is one of the most common complications of the summer heat. Most parks allow you to bring in a refillable water bottle to the parks. Typically, there are many water bottle filling stations throughout the parks and most quick-service dining locations will provide free ice water. While a Joffrey’s coffee or a butterbeer are tasty ways to cool off, make sure you are also getting in that water. 

In addition to drinking plenty of water, you can also let some water cool you down. Hit up those water rides. Tiana's Bayou Adventure will be reopening on June 28th at Magic Kingdom. Over at Islands of Adventure, there are three water attractions. Jurassic Park River Adventure will get you slightly wet, however, the two water rides in Toon Lagoon are not for the faint of heart. You WILL get drenched on these attractions, which is great for cooling you down on a hot summer day, but also something to consider when you need to continue your day in wet clothing.

There are also several water parks associated with the various Florida theme parks. Walt Disney World has Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon, Universal Orlando Resort has Volcano Bay, SeaWorld has Aquatica, and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has Adventure Island. Heading to the water park is a great way to cool off, but keep in mind that they can get rather crowded in peak summer vacation months. 

2. Check Out a Show 

Frozen Show

There are dozens of shows throughout Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort where you can sit in the air conditioning. It is also a great option to take a moment to relax when crowds are at their peak in the middle of the day as well. Some favorites include Carousel of Progress at Magic Kingdom, Turtle Talk with Crush at EPCOT, For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-along Celebration at Hollywood Studios, Festival of the Lion King at Animal Kingdom, and The The Bourne Stunt Spectacular at Universal Studios. 

There are many more shows available throughout the Florida theme parks. While rides are typically the main focus, many of these shows are also incredibly enjoyable and are not to be missed. 

3. Take A Break

Hilton
Image: Hilton

If you can get to the parks as early as possible, it allows the opportunity to go back to your resort during the hottest time of the day. After some naps or a dip in the pool, you can get back to the park and stay until closing. This is also a great tip for avoiding the most crowded part of the day. Additionally, if you are spending multiple days checking out the theme parks, it may be a good idea to work in a break day where you can relax at the resort or do other activities out of the sun. Walking around in the sun for days is absolutely draining, so if possible, allow for some time when everyone can recuperate before getting back out in the heat. 

4. Accessorize! 

Rain

Cooling towels, personal fans, sunglasses sunscreen, and hats are ESSENTIAL in the summer sun. No one wants to be out of commission due to excruciating sunburn. Apply sunscreen regularly and wear a hat to protect your head. If you are traveling with small children that require a stroller, it may also be a great idea to invest in a stroller cover. 

Many parks require you to park your stroller when queuing for attractions, and pop-up rainstorms are extremely common in the Florida summer. Protect your belongings and stroller by covering it each time you park it, and do not forget to bring ponchos for you and your party to carry on in those brief downpours. Finally, make sure to pack these items and bring them with you as they tend to be much more expensive in the parks. 

5. Grab A Cool Snack 

Kakigori
Image: Disney

There are hundreds of delicious snacks throughout the Florida theme parks. However, summer may not be the time to enjoy that huge jacket potato from Universal Studios. Instead, here are a few cold treats that you can enjoy at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort. First, the Dole whip is an obvious choice. 

You can find many varieties at Magic Kingdom, however, it is also found at the Universal Orlando Resort as well. You can choose from many ice cream treats such as the huge Ice Cream Sandwich at DinoBites at Animal Kingdom or delicious flavors at Florean Fortescue’s in Diagon Alley. Next, there are many slushy beverages that will cool one down on a hot summer day. 

Don’t forget to try LeFou’s Brew at Magic Kingdom or Frozen Butterbeer from both Wizarding World of Harry Potter locations. Another cold favorite is the Kakigori in the Japan pavilion in EPCOT. This delicious treat is similar to a Sno-Cone.  Finally, most parks offer coffee stands featuring Starbucks or others where you can get a nice iced pick-me-up to get you that extra bit of energy and cool you down.

 
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