Beyond Disney: the Unofficial Guide to Universal, Seaworld & the Best of Central Florida
A companion to the long running The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World edited by Bob Sehlinger with Seth Kubersky, the 9th edition of Beyond Disney: the Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando, SeaWorld & the Best of Central Florida was re-published on November 10, 2015 and is an insiders guide to Central Florida’s non-Disney attractions.
Page: 384 pages
Publisher: Wiley; 9th edition
Date: November 10, 2015
Dimensions: 8.0 x 5.1 x 1.2 inches
If you take your visit to the Orlando theme parks seriously then the Unofficial Guides are the books for you
The opening chapter covers where to stay with the pros and cons of the various parts of International Drive including Universal’s own Resort Hotels, Lake Buena Vista and the I–4 corridor and US–192 in Kissimmee with hotel/motel comparisons, rankings and information charts.
Useful tips include advice on booking your accommodation online and the fact that hotel rates for a given date vary over time. The best deals seem to occur about 45–60 days before the arrival date.
The Beyond Disney book covers all the other major theme parks across central Florida. There is complete coverage of the big four, namely Universal Orlando (Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure), SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay.
As well as the big four, the book also covers Discovery Cove, Legoland Florida, Gatorland, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and The Holy Land Experience.
For each park there are details on how to get there, ticket prices and then details of all the attractions, rides and shows, tours, dining and shopping. Like the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World, each attraction is rated by different age groups, with basic descriptions, best time to ride, loading speed, ride duration, any restrictions and author’s ratings.
The chapter on Universal Orlando includes comparisons with Disney’s Hollywood Studios plus suggested touring plans and all the latest on the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Buy This BookAs well as Amazon.com, Beyond Disney: the Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando, SeaWorld & the Best of Central Florida can also be bought at other book stores like Amazon.co.uk.
For water park lovers there are comparisons between Disney’s two water parks, Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach, and the rival Wet ‘n’ Wild, Aquatica and Adventure Island plus other local water sports facilities.
Beyond Disney also goes into detail on some of the smaller attractions on International Drive like the miniature golf courses, Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! and Wonderworks plus Old-Town U.S.A and FunSpot U.S.A.
For evening entertainment there are reviews of the dinner shows and Universal Orlando CityWalk and Downtown Orlando/Church Street Station.
Finally there is a chapter on dining outside of Walt Disney World including the restaurants at Universal Orlando.
As well as a general subject index there is also a separate index for hotels and another for restaurants.
If you are planning on visiting the Orlando area then this is a great book to take on the plane with you and keep in the glove box of your car.
Like other Unofficial Guides, there are no colour photographs or fancy maps, just basic two colour maps of the main areas covered by the book.
Note that most guide books are re-published annually so you can often pick up a bargain if you don’t mind last year’s edition.