With Father’s Day right around the corner, I wanted to share a personal collaboration I did with Visit Orlando!
As a way to celebrate fatherhood, they asked me to help plan a vacation to Orlando with my family. Of course I was thrilled and began making a list of places both known and lesser known that I was sure my kids would love to see!
I’m sharing this experience to give other dad’s some inspiration for taking the reins and planning a trip for your fam! It was really fun and something different than we’ve done in the past as my wife, Staci, will often be the planner and researcher for our family adventures. I think I did a pretty good job. These smiles tell it all—am I right?!
We had never been to Disney as a family, so we had to put Disney on the agenda. We got a Park Hopper Pass and visited Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios!
We had a lot of fun and squeezed in quite a bit at Disney in order to give each of our kids a little something special they had hoped to see and experience. Two words I recommend to you in order to make your time at Disney much, much easier: FAST PASS. We used the mobile app (BRILLIANT!) in conjunction with our Fast Pass and we wouldn't go to Disney without it!
We ate lots of good food and took a few breaks for water and the essentials. This photo says it all.
We were ready for dinner, so we had reservations at Tapa Toro and got our Spanish flare of delicious food on and enjoyed the entertainment and atmosphere.
We hit up Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure next!! Staci and I, had been there shortly after we were married and we loved it. I just knew our kids would love it, too. And did they ever! It was one of their favorite parts of our trip.
I’m just saying—if you go to Universal or even go to the City Walk—you MUST eat at Toothsome. But make sure you go hungry because you’ll want dinner AND dessert. I promise you!
Discovery Cove. Seriously!! We were ready for this on Day 4! Discovery Cove is an all-inclusive day resort and we couldn’t have been happier about making this choice. We had an incredible day relaxing and being taken care of. From our check in to our meals to the activities we participated in—we LOVED Discovery Cove and can’t wait to go back again someday! It is such a family friendly place, not over-crowded, and makes for the feel of a little rest and relaxation in the midst of a busy Orlando vacation!
They surprised our American Girl Doll loving girls with some adorable suits and accessories for their dolls. It was so incredibly kind! Here's a few photos our daughters took of their dolls & the goodies from Discovery Cove.
Going the extra mile matters!! Discovery Cove does for sure!
It was also our son Madden’s birthday in June—so they surprised him with a special little gift from Yoko the dolphin after our swim session with her. SO fun! He was ecstatic! And yes, we got to meet and get up close to this precious dolphin, Yoko. We all fell in love with her; even this big ol' dad. :-)
Last but not least, we finished off our trip with a fun and adventurous day at iFly, Wonderworks, and Wild Florida.
Have you ever wanted to try sky diving without having to jump from an actual plane? Check out iFly. It’s an incredibly fun and crazy experience. I was so proud of my kiddos for trying something a bit more challenging. They handled it like total champs! And the staff in Orlando? Super awesome. They made us all feel right at home and encouraged our kids (and us adults!) when we were feeling a little unsure.
Wonderworks? We were all geeking out. Such an awesome place full of a multitude of activities and experiences for all ages. I wish we would have had a little more time there, but we had to move on to our next adventure!
Last stop, but certainly not the least!
The wind blowing through our hair, baby crocodiles, full grown crocodiles, swamps, and wildlife? Yes, please! Wild Florida was a blast!! Even in the Florida heat, we found a way to cool off with an airboat ride and even saw some croc hatchlings! The kids loved it. Me, too!
We grabbed a quick lunch at the restaurant on the property and took a walk around in the safari area where we saw some pretty impressive crocs! Including this albino croc!!
Where did we stay?!
While in Orlando, we stayed at the Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa. We really enjoyed our time there and the kids had fun swimming in the pool and relaxing in the warm Florida air. We even got treated to an absolutely beautiful rainbow across the sky after a few rain showers.
I also managed to schedule in a surprise massage for my wife and I, at our resort—which she thanked me for tenfold. ❤️
A big thanks to Visit Orlando for partnering with me to put this vacation together and for all of their hard work behind the scenes to make everything run smoothly! The Landis Family had a great time!
And all you dads out there? Father's Day is coming up soon—maybe Orlando could be in your family’s future?! I’d love to see what you come up with and definitely let me know if you need any other tips or suggestions!