Florida, the sunshine state. You may be surprised to know that Jacksonville in Florida is the largest city in the United States. My first adventure was to Orlando, Florida in December 2017. I was very excited to learn more about the sunshine state in the US. We flew from Amsterdam to Orlando with TUI. The flight was approximately 10 hours and 7257 kilometers. At the airport of Orlando an accessible taxi from Medex Transportation picked us up and brought us to the apartments.
“Better to see something once than hese about it a thousand times.”
Where to stay?
The Lighthouse Key Resort is a very modern resort in Kissimmee, Orlando. The accessibility in and around the place was good. We rented a passive hoist, which arrived at the hotel on time. The beds were high enough for the hoist to roll under, so that was perfect. There was a huge bathroom with toilet grab rails, accessible sink and a roll in douche. There was a carpet on the ground, which was not very convenient. But, I’d really recommend staying in these apartments if you want to visit Disney and surroundings.
What to do?
The moment I wrote this, a long time has passed since the trip. That is why I don’t remember many details and this post is not very extensive. I do my best to write down everything I remember. Sorry for the little information in this post.
This trip to Orlando was focused on all the parks in the area, so that is what we have visited the most. We arranged all transport by Medex Transportation, which went very well. Besides visiting the parks, we also stayed in and around the resort. There was a good swimming pool with the right adjustments. The water was not heated, so it was ice-cold. But there was also a hot tub, which was nice and warm.
The Magic Kingdom
The first park we visited was The Magic Kingdom. The Disney’s Magic Kingdom was very cool to see, especially because I’ve never been to a Disney park before. How cool is that? Instead of visiting Disneyland Paris first, I went to Disneyland in Florida. The most memorable thing of the Magic Kingdom was that I went in an attraction for the first time in my life! I went into the Big Thunder Mountain and it was SO COOL! I was so excited that I forgot to take a picture, but I’ll never forget that experience anyway. But I have to say, it was not comfortable nor somewhere near to accessible. Besides this attraction we’ve seen a lot of the park itself. It was certainly noticeable that they thought carefully about the accessibility of the park. There were enough accessible toilets with the right adjustments.
Epcot is committed to celebrating human achievements such as technological innovation and international culture. For me personally this park was not very interesting or exciting. In terms of accessibility, it looked a lot like the magic kingdom. A large area was created to show different countries and cultures. Here you could taste the culture of the country and buy and see the typical things of the country. One moment you were in Japan and another moment in France or Morocco. Because it was quite uninteresting for us, we didn’t stay in the park for very long.
Another exciting thing was Universal Studios. Universal Studios Florida is a theme park with numerous attractions and live shows. It was a huge park with enough to see and to do. I went into the ‘Men in Black’ attraction, during this experience you could just stay in your own wheelchair. I loved it so much that I took 3 rounds! It was so easy, because I didn’t have to get out of my wheelchair. The other cool thing about Universal Studios was that you could take pictures with television figures, like Spongebob Squarepants or The Simpsons. There were enough facilities such as toilets and rest areas.
Kennedy Space Center
The John F. Kennedy Space Center is originally known as the NASA Launch Operations Center.
The KSC was very big and educational. There were many things to do and to visit. There were a lot of huge (very huge) rockets to see. Very, very impressive. And not to forget, the accessibility was 10/10. There were elevators so you could enter wherever you wanted to.
Even though there was plenty enough to see, I got bored very fast. The park was not very big, so you’d have seen everything very fast.
Oh! Wait, I almost forgot to tell about the trip to SeaWorld Orlando. At the end of the trip we went to SeaWorld. It was a very cold, rainy day so that was sad. But we all survived it. We did this thing where you could dine with killer whales. So you could eat and watch the whales doing cool tricks. How cool is that? We also saw the dolphin show which was very impressive. In the Netherlands and Belgium I have been to SeaWorld quite often, so there were actually no new things for me. Furthermore, I have little to say about Seaworld. I think everyone should go and discover it for themselves. It’s nice to see all the different animals and fish together in one park.
Orlando Outlet Center
Well, of course, we also had to visit the Orlando outlet center. I love shopping, so I was very excited for that part. Actually, I was excited for everything we did. I don’t have a lot to say about this part, because it was just a shopping center. I liked it, because it was so different and at the same time so the same as Europe.
General things to know
Besides where to stay and what to do, there are some general things you should know.
The most widely spoken language is English, but in Florida there is also a lot of Spanish spoken. This is because Florida is near South America.
The capital city of Florida is Tallahassee
In Florida, actually in all of America, you can pay with dollars.
Florida, known as the sunshine state, has a tropical climate. From may to October there’s a rainy season, but it’ll still be sunshine and hot during this season. Usually there is no snow in Florida, but it is certainly possible.