Woohoo!! You’re headed off on your Orlando Vacation!!
Orlando is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world! We get 60 million visitors annually! That’s a lot of people!! So, it makes sense, if you’re planning to come to Orlando, then come with a plan! One of my favorite things to do before heading out on vacation is to read a book (or books) that are set in the location I’m visiting. So, living in Central Florida, I never really thought about books for an Orlando vacation, because, well, I live here! But, I’ve been reading some, over the past year or so and have come up with a list of What to Read Before Your Orlando Vacation.
Why Read Before You Go
Reading is always a good idea!
Reading to and with your kids is such an important time! And, sharing your love of reading with your kids is one of the most important things you can pass along to them! We need to raise children who become adults who love reading. Reading helps kids with their attention span and to be able to entertain themselves for a longer stretch of time. Video games and television shows seem to rob our kids of any kind of an attention span, so reading helps balance that out!
Familiarize yourself with the area!
One of the things I love about reading books set in the area we’re traveling to is that it helps me familiarize myself with the area. You can get a feel for the locals, the temperature, the food and sometimes even get ideas of where to visit.
Build your books into your vacation!
When we went to London, we had all read different books set in London. So, it was fun to talk about the places we had read about and put them into our tour. One of the books my son read had a local grocery store in it, so we knew before going where we wanted to grab our groceries. It was fun!
The Disney Book by Jim Fanning
This book is great because it covers all the stories – old and new! That way, your kids can become familiar with Cinderella, Mowgli, and Goofy and Bambi! And, they are just great stories!
Any of the princess books, or Star Wars book are great if you’re headed to Disney. If you’re going to Universal, Scooby Doo and Super Heros are big!
Older Kids (10+)
Kingdom Keepers series (fantasy) (Disney)
This series is great! It takes you behind the scenes at Disney and offers a glimpse into the Disney that usually only employees get to see. This series would definitely create a lot of opportunities for a scavenger hunt around the Disney parks!
Harry Potter (fantasy) (Universal Studios)
Even though the Harry Potter series isn’t set in Orlando, you’ll feel like your at Hogwarts if you go to Universal Studios! Between Hogsmeade, Hogwarts, the Hogwarts Express, and Diagon Alley, it’s everything a Harry Potter fan could want! They’ve done such a great job building this park. There are so many little hidden gems throughout the area. You’ll love it!
Listening to this on the drive down is a fun way to pass the time! And, depending on how long your road trip is, you might get through a couple of the books!
Paper Towns by John Green (realistic fiction)
This one is NOT theme park based, but more the local area around Orlando.
Dream Factory by Brad Barkley
another centering around Disney.
if you are into real-life crime, this is the story of Casey Anthony.
Murder Packs a Suitcase by Cynthia Baxter (murder mystery)
The author includes tips and reviews of real Florida attractions!
A Suite Deal by Kay Sisk (romance)
A fun story of miscommunication and a hotel mix-up set in the Orlando area.
Escape Clause by David Beradelli (thriller)
Set in Orlando, this will keep you reading.
Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow (sci-fi)
The Connection Between Book & Vacation
So, build the connection between what you’ve read and what you’ll be seeing when you get to Orlando (or wherever you’re going). Spend the time figuring out what your kids learned about the area – they might just surprise you! Ask them what they’d like to see that they read about. Let your kids help build your Orlando Vacation by what they’ve learned in the books they’ve read or heard.
Orlando is a great place, so I hope you have a great time!
Audiobooks are great too! And, if you’re taking a road trip to Orlando, you can listen to some of these books on your way down 🙂
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