If your 2024 holiday to Florida is the first time you have visited the Sunshine State in a few years, expect a few surprises. In addition to brand-new hotels, shopping destinations and restaurants, thrill-seekers will be some of the first to experience the latest attractions at the state’s exhilarating theme parks. With recent expansions to Florida’s inter-city rail route, exploring all that is new in 2024 is easier than ever.
A fiery, family-friendly adventure is set to soar above the Serengeti Plain at Busch Gardens Tampa in spring 2024. Riders will feel the rush of the wind and the thrill of the flight on Phoenix Rising, a suspended roller coaster that swings side to side as it races high above the Pantopia region. Phoenix Rising will be the first coaster at the park to feature on-board audio, enhancing the ride experience with a one-of-a-kind soundtrack integrated into an exhilarating array of twists, turns and surprises for families riding together.
LEGOLAND Florida Resort will debut two major attractions in 2024: LEGO Ferrari “Build and Race” Experience and Sea Life Florida Resort. LEGO Ferrari Build and Race Experience will give guests the chance to create their own Ferrari race car in interactive play zones, test drive it through three extreme courses and then race on a virtual track to the finish line. With plans to open in fall 2024, Sea Life Florida Resort is an immersive aquarium giving families the opportunity to get up close and personal with marine life and embark on “a voyage of oceanic exploration,” culminating in the “The Theme Park Under the Sea.” This attraction will require separate admission.
Coming to SeaWorld Orlando in 2024, Penguin Trek invites families to board a snowmobile and race along with an expedition team, navigating twists and turns and narrowly escaping the crumbling hazards of an icy cavern in Antartica. The ultimate discovery is revealed at the end of the journey: a real penguin habitat.
Next year, Universal Orlando Resort will launch an all-new themed land featuring some of DreamWorks Animation’s beloved characters. Guests can share special moments with their favorite characters, like Gabby from Gabby’s Dollhouse, and explore interactive play spaces and attractions that bring popular franchises like Shrek, Trolls and Kung Fu Panda to life.
At Walt Disney World Resort, Magic Kingdom’s Splash Mountain is set to transform into Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. This Princess and the Frog re-imagining of the iconic boat ride transports riders to the Louisiana bayou, with appearances from Princess Tiana, Mama Odie and their friends. Also at Magic Kingdom, a new Pirates of the Caribbean-themed lounge is coming to Adventureland in 2024. This first-of-its-kind experience will extend the story of Pirates of the Caribbean and be located near the main attraction.
The up-and-coming Amalfi Llama in Aventura is inspired by cultures ranging from Patagonia’s countryside to the Mediterranean’s Italian coast. Specializing in live-fire cooking using smoke, coals and embers to prepare meat, seafood and vegetables, popular dishes include cedar-roasted burrata, wood-fired pizza, steaks and branzino.
Tutto Mare, a Mediterranean concept from the Tutto il Giorno restaurant group, will open next year at The Royal Poinciana Plaza as Palm Beach’s first and only intra-coastal waterfront restaurant. Tutto Mare will feature delicious cuisine and an unforgettable guest experience, with an outdoor terrace overlooking the water to align with the original vision of a coastal open-air eatery.
Aimed at putting “Wellness within Reach,” EVEN Hotel Sweetwater – Doral is projected to open in summer 2024. The hotel will enable travelers to restore, rejuvenate and retain their personal routines while away from home by offering varying exercise amenities – ranging from yoga mats to Peloton bikes to a state-of-the-art athletic studio – along with access to health-conscious meals, snacks and beverages from the new EVEN Kitchen & Bar and adjacent 24/7 market.
The St. Regis Longboat Key Resort and Residences is set to open in spring 2024, featuring a 166-room luxury hotel and three six-story residential buildings containing 69 high-end condominiums. Hotel guests and homeowners will have access to premier amenities including multiple swimming pools, a world-class spa, a high-end wellness center, daily housekeeping, on-site pet grooming and butler, concierge, chef, Bentley and chauffeur services.
Sit back, relax and see more of Florida on the Brightline high-speed rail service. Brightline’s all-new Orlando station opened in September 2023, connecting passengers to south Florida with stops in Aventura, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, West Palm Beach and Miami. The Orlando station is conveniently located at Terminal C at Orlando International Airport, so visitors can easily expand their getaways to destinations across central and south Florida and still catch their flights. A future expansion to Tampa is currently under consideration.
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About VISIT FLORIDA
VISIT FLORIDA is the Sunshine State’s official tourism marketing corporation and travel planning resource for visitors across the globe. As Florida’s No. 1 industry, tourism was responsible for welcoming over 137.4 million visitors in 2022, the highest number of visitors in the state’s history. VISIT FLORIDA promotes tourism through sales, advertising, promotions, public relations and visitor services programs, and works with travel industry partners throughout the state. To learn more about VISIT FLORIDA, follow @FloridaTourism on Facebook and Twitter, or go to visitflorida.org. For inspiration in the Sunshine State, follow @VISITFLORIDA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or visit www.visitflorida.com. For media resources, visit www.visitfloridamedia.com.