What’s Next at Walt Disney World® Resort in 2017


I want to thank Disney for hosting my family and me at the Walt Disney World® Resort where we spent a magical time filled with pixie dust.


For my family, planning ahead for our Walt Disney World® vacation is part of the fun. Going back time and time again to experience new attractions and make new memories is part of why we love spending time together at Walt Disney World® Resort. 2017 will be a very exciting year when it comes to new attractions and experiences and we can’t wait to check out all of them!

Here is what’s coming soon to Walt Disney World® Resort:

MORE: Here's What's New at Walt Disney World® Resort

The “Rivers of Light” Show

As I mentioned in a previous article, Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park has recently added many exciting nighttime experiences giving the park a whole new dimension after dark by offering surprises and new adventures around each corner and it sounds like the Walt Disney Imagineers have left the best for last. The “Rivers of Light” Show promises to be one of the most sensational and innovative nighttime shows, combining live performances, floating lanterns, water screens and swirling animal imagery. The “Rivers of Light” Show will magically come to life on the natural stage of Discovery River. This dazzling experience will not only bring another level of magic to the nighttime offerings already happening at the park but will also be the perfect way to end a delightful day at this amazing park. My family and I can’t wait to go back to Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park to enjoy this spectacular celebration of the wonders of nature happening right on the river!

Pandora — The World of AVATAR

Without a doubt the most exciting experience coming to Walt Disney World® Resort this year is the summer opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park. When I saw the movie Avatar for the first time I found myself hypnotized by the fantastic beauty of Pandora and all I could think was how I would love to jump into the movie and walk along the beautiful enchanted forest of Pandora. Walt Disney World® Resort has made that wish come true by bringing to life a 12 acre new land which recreates parts of the awe-inspiring alien planet including its floating mountains and bioluminescent rainforests.

Pandora – The World of Avatar will include two extraordinary rides: The Na’vi River Journey Attraction, a family friendly boat type ride, will take visitors on a night time trip along the water through the bioluminescent forest while Avatar Flight of Passage Attraction will give thrill seekers the opportunity to fly through Pandora on a mountain Banshee and soar high above this exotic alien world.

My family and I have been following the news on the developments of this new land and we can’t wait to embark on an exciting expedition to Pandora and check out the rides, which sound amazing! I am also looking forward to dining at Satu’li Canteen, which is the main dining establishment in Pandora. Rumor has it that this restaurant along with the Pongu Pongu drink location will offer completely unique, "alien cuisine" unlike anything else offered at the resort. This new land will also house the Windtraders gift store where visitors exploring Pandora will be able to purchase Na’vi cultural items, toys, science kits, and more.

From the photos that have been released you can see that Walt Disney World® Resort has built something genuinely immersive and impressive that stays true to the fantastic alien world portrayed in the movie by using cutting edge animatronic technology. I am counting the days for the grand opening!

Disney Springs® Dining

There are so many great new restaurants that will be opening in 2017 at the Disney Springs® shopping and entertainment center.

The Edison, scheduled to open later this year, will offer classic American food in what promises to be a unique atmosphere. This lavish “Industrial Gothic”-style restaurant, bar and nighttime destination is reminiscent of a 1920’s electric power plant and will feature distinct areas like The Lab performance space, The Ember Parlour, Telegraph Lounge, The Patent Office, The Tesla Lounge, The Radio Room, and a Waterfront Patio. The Lab performance room will offer entertainment such as contortionists, palm readers, live DJs and more.

We have always been huge fans of the Planet Hollywood restaurants and the Planet Hollywood Observatory coming to Disney Springs this year promises to be a sensational dining experience with its three-floor-up-to-the-ceiling eat-arena with famous movie memorabilia video screens and music. Planet Hollywood’s flagship will include delicious burger and sandwich creations from celebrity chef Guy Fieri.

We have always enjoyed eating at the Ravenous Pig, a favorite with Orlando locals, and its sister restaurant The Polite Pig opening in 2017 will bring the same focus on genuine Florida cuisine to Disney Springs®. Wine lovers will be excited about the opening of Wine Bar George, the first Walt Disney World® Resort wine bar which will feature more than 100 selections of wine by the bottle and glass accompanied by small plates.

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We can’t wait to experience all the new and unique things that are coming to Walt Disney World® Resort this year and find out what our new favorite things to do and places to eat will be. As you plan your Walt Disney World® Resort vacation, which of the new attractions are you most interested in experiencing?