When visiting any of the South’s incredible theme parks, it pays to be prepared. No matter whether it’s Walt Disney World in Orlando or Dollywood in Pigeon Forge , a few items will help make your day go smoothly.
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Clothing and Accessories
Comfort is key if you’ll be spending the day riding roller coasters and walking miles within a theme park. Depending on the time of year you visit, it can get very hot so dress accordingly. In Florida especially, the heat can be intense so a hat is a must-have. Cover your head with a sun hat like our This Is My South trucker hat. Bring as little as possible in a small bag that is easy to stash at the lockers at certain rides. Rain gear like ponchos are essential in case of storms as buying one will set you back $10.
It’s fun to wear items related to your favorite characters, especially at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando. Hot Topic, BoxLunch, and Disney Style are great places to purchase clothing for your trip. There are also stores within the parks to pick up your Harry Potter house gear (go Ravenclaw!) and wands. Comfortable shoes are very important if you want to avoid blisters. If you’re planning on going on water rides, choose a pair that will dry quickly. For roller coasters, you’ll certainly need shoes that won’t fall off. Chacos fit the bill for both.
Most travelers will want to bring their phone but unless you really need it, leave the more expensive items at home. For your smartphone, bring a plastic bag or waterproof case with you for water rides. I’ve ruined one myself so I can speak to the importance! Snapping photos quickly drains your battery so an extra phone battery is helpful. And if you’re curious, a fitness tracker like a Fitbit will show you just how far you’ve gone during the day!
A water bottle is important to fill up throughout the day as there are usually water fountains or areas to fill up at restaurants. You’ll also be glad to have snacks to hold you over between meals and avoid spending a fortune on food. Dried fruit, crackers, and such are ideal as are other items that won’t melt. You’ll need hand sanitizer, preferably something on a keychain, and sunscreen both to put on before you go and to reapply throughout the day. A simple paper fan can help you cool down. Be sure to grab a
lanyard for tickets, hotel keys, and trading pins. And don’t forget an autograph book for kids!