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What's Coming to Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando in 2023 and Beyond — TRON Lightcycle Run Opens April 4!

by Tad on January 11, 2023 846 Orlando   Video

Inside This Post Inside This Post

Summary

'Sup! Welcome to Tad's toadally awesome list of what's coming to Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort and the other Florida theme parks in 2023 and beyond! As the Frog Family’s resident thrill seeker, tech junkie and head frog videographer — thank you very much — I live to keep tabs on all of the attractions and experiences heading to the Orlando theme parks, and I've been doing it for a few years. After a few unusual years for theme parks, with temporary closures due to COVID-19, some openings and projects were delayed or postponed indefinitely. But there are a lot of exciting things to look forward to in 2023 and beyond!

What's Coming to Disney World and Universal Orlando in 2023 - Happily Ever After

We're so frogcited about the new rides and experiences coming in 2023, including TRON Lightcycle / Run coming to Magic Kingdom in spring and a new Minion Land at Universal Orlando in summer. Plus, we're also looking forward to many more exciting hoppenings on the horizon, such as Tiana's Bayou Adventure (the retheming of Splash Mountain) in late 2024 and Universal's Epic Universe in 2025.

If you're curious about all of the Universal Orlando and Disney World construction around the parks, you're at the right place. Be sure to bookmark this page because I add to it as new rides, shows and other hoppenings are announced! (Hop here to see what opened in 2022 and previous years.) And with great openings comes great crowds, so if you're wondering about the best times to visit Disney World and Universal Orlando, this post should help as you plan your trip, whether you want to be first in line or avoid the elevated crowds.

What's Coming to Disney World and Universal Orlando in 2023 and Beyond

What's Coming to Disney World - Infographic

Magic Kingdom Park

"Happily Ever After" Returns — April 3, 2023 — You'll once again be able to "reach out and find your Happily Ever After" at Magic Kingdom, as the fan-favorite show returns with all-new projections down Main Street, U.S.A. (Disney Enchantment will have its last show April 2.)

TRON Lightcycle Run — April 4, 2023 — Imported from Shanghai Disneyland, Tron Lightcycle Run will be a coaster-style attraction where riders board a train of two-wheeled Lightcycles. The ride pushes you into the energy, lights and excitement of TRON’s high-tech universe.

Hatbox Ghost Materializes in the Haunted Mansion — 2023 — The Hatbox Ghost will join the other happy haunts of the Haunted Mansion next year.

Tiana's Bayou Adventure — late 2024 — Splash Mountain will be getting a total makeover as it transforms into “Tiana’s Bayou Adventure,” debuting in late 2024 at Magic Kingdom (along with Disneyland Park). Inspired by "The Princess and the Frog," the popular log flume ride's new storyline will pick up after the final kiss, and follow Princess Tiana, Naveen and Louis on a musical adventure. Enjoy lively Mardi Gras celebrations with familiar faces as guests travel through the bayou with original music inspired by the film. Splash Mountain permanently closed Jan. 23, 2023, to prepare for this retheming.

EPCOT

What's Coming to Disney World - Epcot Reimagined Entrance

Reimagined main entrance — in progress — EPCOT's main plaza will include new pathways, green spaces and a reimagined fountain (which is now complete!). The Leave A Legacy photos have moved just outside the park's gateway in a new, multi-colored display. There will be additional redevelopment to the area between Spaceship Earth and World Showcase Promenade, which includes several unique gardens, united by a central planter based on the five-ring EPCOT logo. Special lighting will provide a different experience at night.

What's Coming to Disney World and Universal - Journey of Water

Journey of Water, Inspired by “Moana” — late 2023 — This brand-new walkthrough attraction will "let guests interact with magical, living water in a beautiful and inspiring setting," and you'll get to learn about the importance of the natural water cycle.

Dreamers Point — late 2023 — Near the exit of Spaceship Earth, a new statue that celebrates the legacy of Walt Disney will be placed alongside natural environments. It will include a wishing tree and a story fountain that plays iconic music from Disney storytelling.

CommuniCore Plaza and CommuniCore Hall — late 2023 — This new multi-use facility and outdoor event space will support EPCOT's festivals. The plaza will have an outdoor stage to host musical performances, and the hall will be an exhibition and gallery space, featuring experiences that highlight art, live music and food (complete with a demonstration kitchen). Also, a permanent Mickey & Friends location will find its home right next to CommuniCore Hall.

New Nighttime Spectacular — late 2023  Harmonious will have its last performance April 2, 2023, while EPCOT Forever will return April 3 with a limited-time run before an all-new nighttime spectacular debuts later this year.

Figment Meet and Greet — end of 2023 — Next year, guests will be able to meet Figment, formerly only available in our imaginations.

PLAY! pavilion — date TBD Originally slated to open in time for Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary, this new pavilion in the former Wonders of Life location will showcase first-of-its-kind experiences devoted to play and fun, including an interactive city where guests will be able to interact with characters. Help Edna Mode on a fashionable quest to rid the world of uninspired style, or compete in a water-balloon fight with Huey, Dewey, Louie and Webby.

"Wondrous China" film — date TBD — This World Showcase pavilion will receive a new film that is presented in a seamless 360-degree format.

Mary Poppins Attraction — postponed — At this time, development for this attraction has been postponed indefinitely. The United Kingdom pavilion was set to host the first attraction inspired by Mary Poppins, allowing guests to stroll along Cherry Tree Lane, past Admiral Boom's house, and enter Number 17, the Banks family's home.

Disney's Hollywood Studios

Roundup Rodeo BBQ — March 23, 2023 — A table-service restaurant is coming to Toy Story Land! Themed to feel like a rodeo run by Andy's toys, this immersive restaurant will have toys, games and playsets scattered around, including toy versions of Jessie riding on the back of a Trixie pull-toy and Bo Peep and her sheep performing in the rodeo together.

Walt Disney World Resort Hotels

Reflections: A Disney Lakeside Lodge date TBD — Disney's 16th Disney Vacation Club property is in the works at the former site of River Country water park. Originally slated to open in 2022, the nature-themed deluxe hotel will be located between Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground. The project has likely been postponed.

Disney Springs

Summer House on the Lake — 2023 — This new restaurant coming to Disney Springs will feature a California-inspired menu and a beachy, breezy environment. The full-service restaurant will also include an in-house bakery and an extensive cocktail and wine list.

What's Coming to Universal Orlando - Infographic

Universal Orlando Resort

Illumination's Villain-Con Minion Blast — summer 2023 — Fuel up on those bananas and practice your aim because you're about to enter Villain-Con, the biggest gathering of criminals anywhere. If you want to join the hallowed ranks of The Vicious 6, you're going to need to prove your worth. Grab an interactive blaster and step on the moving pathway where you'll journey through different despicable scenes and earn points by blasting a variety of objects. This brand-new attraction will combine screen technology, gaming interactivity and physical sets to create a unique adventure, causing mayhem with mischievous Minions and nefarious foes alike.

Minion Cafe — 2023 — Dine like a supervillain at the all-new Minion Cafe in the newly-designated Minion Land opening next year!

What's Coming to Universal and Disney World - Universal's Epic Universe concept art

Universal's Epic Universe — summer 2025 — Universal Orlando Resort announced that it's building a brand-new theme park called Universal's Epic Universe. Little is known about the themed lands, but Universal says it will be its most immersive and innovative theme park yet. In addition to the lands, it will feature an entertainment center, hotels, shops, restaurants and more. Located about 12 minutes away from its existing properties, Universal's Epic Universe will nearly double Universal's total available acreage! Check out the latest developments in our Universal's Epic Universe guide.

Due to COVID-19, further development had been postponed, but construction has restarted and it's been confirmed that the park's completion will hoppen by summer 2025.

Shigeru Miyamoto with Nintendo - What's Coming to Disney World and Universal

Super Nintendo World at Universal's Epic Universe summer 2025  — Universal has partnered with Nintendo to bring to life experiences based on Nintendo's games, characters and worlds. It has been confirmed that Super Nintendo World will be one of the themed lands at Universal's Epic Universe. The very first Super Nintendo World (which will likely be similar to the future Orlando version) opened at Universal Studios Japan on March 18, 2021.

What's Coming to Other Florida Theme Parks in 2023 and Beyond

SeaWorld Orlando

Pipeline: The Surf Coaster — 2023 — SeaWorld Orlando is living up to its title as the Coaster Capital of Orlando with the introduction of its seventh toadally tubular roller coaster. The world's first surf coaster will allow frogs to ride the waves along 2,950 feet of track and feel the rush with speeds up to 60 mph. These one-of-a-kind standing seats will rise and fall to mimic the sensation of the waves. Hang on tight, because you're about to ride crests up to 110 feet tall and even conquer a curl with one epic inversion. Cowabunga!

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay

What's Coming to Disney World and Universal - Serengeti Flyer

Serengeti Flyer — 2023 — The world's tallest and fastest ride of its kind, Serengeti Flyer will feature twin dueling arms that progressively sway back and forth reaching speeds of 68 mph and a maximum height of 135 feet at its peak. Frogs will be seated back-to-back in rows of 10 across two gondolas and will experience multiple negative-G moments before plunging back toward the Earth. This screamin' swing will allow frogs to soar high above Busch Gardens' 65-acre Serengeti Plain when it opens next year.

LEGOLAND Florida Resort 

Pirate River Quest — Jan. 12, 2023 — Join the LEGO pirate crew on a quest to find Captain Redbeard's lost treasure. Along the way, the pirate crew will meet Calico Jade and encounter flamingos, monkeys and even a kraken.

I hope you've enjoyed this look at what's coming to Disney World and Universal in 2023 and beyond. Make sure to come back to see what's been added as you get closer to your visit. Hop on over to our When to Visit Orlando page for more planning tips, part of our Orlando Planning Timeline!

Related: Best Time To Visit Disney World

Related: Best Time To Visit Universal Orlando Resort

Stay cool!

Keep hopping, Tad!
View Comments
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1–50 of 793 comments
Sep 14, 2021 at 1:52 p.m. Tina M Griego Says...

I am coming Dec. 4-11 and was wondring do I still need to reserve a day due to COVID to go to Magic Kingdom? If so whats the best way to do that so it's legit?

Reply
Sep 14, 2021 at 10:13 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tina!

Yes, Disney Park Pass reservations are still required. You can make reservations here.

Stay cool!

Tad

Reply
Feb 10, 2021 at 4:12 a.m. Joshua Rodriguez Says...

I want to visit universal and islands of adventure in may for my birthday because I haven't been in years and I know may is usually busy around that time. Do you know a good time sometime near or after velocicoaster releases that won't be as packed. and also, do you think they might release it at an earlier date cuz I heard they started testing with real people already.

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Feb 10, 2021 at 2:24 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Joshua!

We are still anxiously awaiting an opening date for VelociCoaster - once we have a date, we'll be sure to keep this post updated! Crossing our fingers that it's open for your birthday :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 12, 2020 at 5:31 p.m. Heather L Says...

I can't wait until traveling and adventures are back again! I have family in Orlando and would love to take my son on an adventure there!

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Sep 29, 2020 at 3:03 p.m. Holly Says...

We love you folks. We have bought all our tickets through you for years and love your crowd calendar!

Will Remy's Ratatouille Adventure actually open in 2020? That would be great. I wish one of the coasters would open by April 2021.

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Sep 29, 2020 at 2:02 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Thank you so much, Holly - we're so hoppy to hear it! We are crossing our fingers for Remy's, but nothing official has been announced just yet. We'll continue to keep this post updated as we hear more!

Stay cool!

Tad

Reply
Apr 4, 2020 at 9:53 a.m. Amaury Says...

This website is just amazing. Everything usefull for a future trip is in there. Good job :p I don't plan to go at Orlando soon but when I go, I'll use this site to prepare almost everything.

PS: Is this normal there is nothing for Animal Kingdom?

Reply
Apr 6, 2020 at 8:53 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Thanks so much, Amaury - we're glad you hopped by! More news may come for Disney's Animal Kingdom as the year goes on (such as last year's Lion King festivities, new Tree of Life awakenings, etc.). We'll keep this post updated as we hear more!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 16, 2020 at 3:29 p.m. Dave Says...

Just started getting your emails before our trip in late Oct. The tips and info in your newsletters was very helpful. Would like to go back again soon and spend more time in Epcot for the wine and food festival

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Jan 16, 2020 at 11:52 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dave!

We are so hoppy to hear it! If you want to live vicariously through 2019's event details, be sure to hop over to our guide to Epcot's International Food and Wine Festival here. Fingers crossed you get to hop there soon - be sure to keep us posted!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 7, 2019 at 8:03 p.m. Chris Says...

So excited to see the new SeaWorld coaster Ice Breaker open up this coming spring!

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Oct 21, 2019 at 11:04 a.m. Kerri Says...

Thanks for the updates! I think I am most excited for Tron coming soon

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Oct 17, 2019 at 6:41 p.m. Christopher M Reid Says...

Cant wait for this

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Oct 11, 2019 at 6:22 p.m. Sheri DeOrio Says...

Thanks for putting the updates all in one place. There's so much to look forward to!

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Oct 11, 2019 at 4:48 p.m. Nina Says...

Great updates on all the new things coming!!! I can't wait to see them!!!!

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Oct 11, 2019 at 2:38 p.m. Johnny Rojas Says...

Thanks, as usual always informative!!

Reply
Oct 6, 2019 at 2:33 a.m. S Sumner Says...

We plan on going in 2021. When will the new happenings be opening then?

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Oct 8, 2019 at 3:37 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Summer!

Much of what's opening in 2021 don't have exact opening dates just yet, unfortunately, but we do know that Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway, new World Showcase shows and Remy's Ratatouille Adventure will be open by the time your trip comes around, to name a few! We'd suggest bookmarking this post and continuing to check back - we'll keep updating as new dates are released!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 26, 2019 at 10:23 p.m. Wayne D Says...

My daughter is getting married March 2019 and I want to send them to DisneyWorld for a wedding present but Iam overwhelmed with all the information. Im retired and wife is disabled and live on a tight budget. Are there any "packages" for a wedding gift there? I'm looking for the best "bang for the buck!" Where do I start??? Thank you!

Reply
Aug 27, 2019 at 9:32 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Wayne!

We think this is such a fun idea! While there isn't a wedding package offered, we can help you get this taken care of the old fashioned way :) Disney offers lots of vacation packages - you'll just need an idea of dates they'd like to visit and your budget to start. They do run specials throughout the year, so be sure to check in periodically here! Likewise, we offer discounted tickets and hotel rooms, just not bundled in a package :) For hotels, if you'd like for them to stay on-site, the most affordable option is in the Value category (we recommend Pop Century). Another option would be Disney gift cards; unlike some other retailers, Disney gift cards can be used to pay for hotel rooms, tickets, food - basically anything on Disney property. You could always bundle a gift card with a Disney picture frame, Bride and Groom Mickey ears or something else that's Mickey/wedding themed to give it a personal touch :) We hope this helps, Wayne! Please let us know if we can help with any additional questions!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 3, 2019 at 3 p.m. Michele Says...

I would love to see all the new things at Universal-our last visit was 20 years ago. Delicate question...can you enjoy all the neat looking Harry Potter rides and areas without having read the books or seen the movies?

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Jul 3, 2019 at 12:57 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Michele,

You absolutely can! Enjoy!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 3, 2019 at 2:17 p.m. Debbie P Says...

Cannot wait, we are going to Universal Florida next month, first time!

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Jun 26, 2019 at 2:02 p.m. Brandi Smith Says...

I wasn't planning on going back to Universal this trip to Florida, but I think now, I may not have a choice! Thanks for the tips

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Jul 3, 2019 at 2:39 p.m. Randy P Says...

Just came back, I love this park!!

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May 30, 2019 at 3:49 a.m. Tony B Says...

I remember my parents taking our family to DisneyWorld in 1974, It absolutely was a MAGICAL NEW WORLD !!! We still talk about it and the other trips we have taken there throughout the years. It was such a nice blessing for me to take my family there twice when our children were young! I’m sure WALT is looking down and smiling just knowing how much happiness he has created and shared with so many families. Now that I am older I would love to be able to take my Grandchildren there and share the experiences with them that only Walt Disney could provide for families. I truly wish upon a star that WDW would have maybe some type of a lottery gift to help a family to enjoy the MAGICAL WORLD OF WALTER ELIAS DISNEY and his never ending experiences that he has created for children and their families to be able to enjoy together. I am on a disability income from bone cancer and absolutely do not have the funds to even enjoy WDW with my family, not even one last time... All I can do is Hope Pray and WISH UPON A STAR for help in this matter. THANKYOU for letting me share my feelings and thoughts. Sincerely Tony B

Reply
Apr 26, 2019 at 7:47 p.m. Tracy Says...

This is one of the best articles I’ve found!!! This is perfect information! I didn’t know about the new DVC where the old water park was located. That Star Wars Hotel will be sold out I’m sure how fun for those SW lovers. At Disney ur never bored and it’s always changing and they make it so ur never done with it. Sucks sometimes and overwhelming for people like me wirh anxiety over it lol just cuz I feel it’s business to get to the rides! Lol. Thank you

Reply
Apr 26, 2019 at 3:13 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Tracy, it makes us so hoppy to hear from you! Thanks so much for taking the time to read and comment.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 21, 2019 at 1:55 a.m. Alan Says...

OMIGOSH!!!!!!!! I just went to Disney and Universal for the fourth time in January this year, and I knew all about the new star wars land, Tron coaster, and Hagrid's ride along with the gondola in Hollywood studios were already being build, but I didn't know that this is what going to go on in the next decade or so!!!!!! Thanks, man!! This will be really helpful in the future the next time I visit WDW and Universal with the fam!!! Thanks again!!!!!!!

Reply
Apr 23, 2019 at 8:36 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

You are so welcome, Alan! Thanks for taking the time to comment!

Stay cool!

Tad

Reply
Apr 16, 2019 at 2:38 a.m. Rick Rogers Says...

Why not give videos to see what the new rides will look like?

Reply
Apr 16, 2019 at 4:14 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rick!

We absolutely plan to do so once they open - stay tuned!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 1, 2019 at 10:05 p.m. David Says...

Went Disney World Christmas 2017. Awesome! Planning to go back summer of 2021.

Reply
Jan 1, 2019 at 9:06 p.m. Amanda Says...

Does the new accomodation at Universal include express passes please?

Reply
Jan 16, 2019 at 11:42 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amanda,

Good question! No, it does not. The hotels that offer Unlimited Express are Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 2, 2018 at 4:15 a.m. Nancy Says...

Can't wait to go!

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Nov 29, 2018 at 7:37 p.m. Marisa Huynh Says...

We cant wait to visit the parks!

Reply
Aug 29, 2018 at 8:36 a.m. Tisha Says...

My hubby is gonna be thrilled. Star Wars. Can't wait for the next visit.

Reply
Sep 24, 2018 at 2:12 p.m. Kara misso Says...

When are you going to put a minions ride at universal studios in Orlando

Reply
Sep 25, 2018 at 11:23 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kara!

There actually is! Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem is one of Lily's favorites.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 21, 2018 at 10:20 p.m. Slinky Says...

What awesome new experiences are coming. I can't wait.

Reply
Jul 3, 2018 at 7:35 a.m. The Taylor's Says...

Super excited...we are going spring break 2019...

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 4:17 a.m. Carrie Capehart Says...

I really want to g9

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 4:17 a.m. Cliff Plummer Says...

Wow so many exciting things coming. toy story land sounds awesome!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 3:57 a.m. Heather Stone Says...

Love everything DISNEY!!! So many new memories to make over the next few years!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 3:40 a.m. Jean Says...

Looking forward to the new Wizarding World ride at Universal!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 2:29 a.m. Ronald F Says...

I am so looking forward to Star Wars Land!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:31 a.m. Amy A Says...

Planning a trip in August...would be better if it were free!! :)

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:28 a.m. Marilyn Dowd Says...

Cant wait for Skyliner.Lots of news

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:28 a.m. Kimberly Eckard Says...

Looks amazing!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:23 a.m. CHG Says...

Can’t wait to visit the water park!

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:15 a.m. Ssandmeier Says...

Can't wait to go.

Reply
Jul 1, 2018 at 12:09 a.m. Donna porter Says...

This is great information. I would love to go back here since it has been over 20 years!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 11:48 p.m. Malissa O Zuniga Says...

Cant wait to visit again!!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 11:12 p.m. Robin Says...

So exciting! I can't wait for the Tron coaster!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 10:30 p.m. Cory Thornton Says...

Ready to go to Orlando for all of the above! Especially Star Wars Land and Harry Potter

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 10:29 p.m. Bailey Says...

Awesome article- loved the puns! Can’t wait for Star Wars land. Disney and Universal rock!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 10:08 p.m. Iliana M Says...

Can't wait to visit!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 10:06 p.m. Jill Carroll Says...

I would like to plan a visit!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 9:45 p.m. Iliana Mendiola Says...

Awesome news!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 9:40 p.m. Elisha Brewer Says...

Sounds fun!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 9:06 p.m. T. Flaherty Says...

So excited to visit for the first time!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 7:51 p.m. Linda M Says...

Can't wait for my next vacation down there!

Reply
Jun 30, 2018 at 7:23 p.m. Marshal711 Says...

Can’t wait to get back to both Universal and Disney again!

Reply
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