Ah, it's that time of year; the annual migration of snowbirds is upon us. Should you, dear readers, be one of them, I want you to be prepared. Here then, is my top ten list of Tips for Your Spring Break in Orlando.
10. You will be fiercely hot and sweating like a pig. Water is $2.75. Accept it.
9. Best Ride at Disney--My personal favorites are Splash mountain and that thing they used to call the WedWay people mover, but now it's called TTL or something. Also be forewarned if you haven't been there in a while: Mr. Toad's Wild Ride has left the building.
8. Best Water Park: Blizzard Beach, hands down.
7. The best Beach Pier is in Daytona. Ride the rickety, old sky lift that dangles you over the ocean.
6. For the true Ron Jon's experience, you must visit the Ron Jon's in Cocoa Beach, not one of those branches in a mall where they try to recreate the whole ocean experience.
5. It's in the high eighties; bring shorts. And we've had some cold fronts, too, so bring pants and maybe a long sleeved shirt, especially if you want to walk on the beach at night. Ladies, bring a sweater and leave it in the car everywhere you go, because no matter how hot it is outside, every restaurant has the thermostat set to Chill. Oh, and it might rain. Be prepared.
4. That's not a tan you're getting; it's a sunburn. When you go back up north, you will look like a lobster and all your friends will tease you. Use SPF 50.
3. Do not use your turn signal--it only alerts the other drivers to speed up and not let you in. I share with you now the method I have perfected: Keep your face forward while relentlessly scanning all your mirrors for an opening. When you see one, crank the wheel and BAM! slide in. You have now executed the Orlando lane change.
2. The SunPass lanes on the toll roads are not the same as a Fast Pass at Disney. We O-towners paid for these little boxes that sit on our dashboards and drain money from our bank accounts every time we speed through the gate. Go through the cash or change lanes. Tip: You can run through a couple of tolls without being fined. After that, the gate cameras take pictures of your license plate and a nice little ticket will be sitting in your mailbox, awaiting your return.
1.All the main streets here are referred to by numbers and names. Even the finest tourist with the latest GPS will find herself at a gas station for directions. Let me give you a rundown. (Cut this part out and keep it in your pocket.)
- Highway 50 is Colonial Drive.
- 441 is Orange Blossom Trail, also referred to as OBT.
- 17/92 is Mills Avenue.
- 441/17/92 is also Orange Blossom Trail or OBT, but it is not Mills Ave., nor does it merge or in any way connect with said Mills Avenue in Orlando proper.
- Sometimes, Mills Avenue is called Orlando Avenue.
- 436 is Semoran Boulevard, but in some parts, it is called East Altamonte Drive.
- 417 is the Greenway.
- 408 is the East/West Expressway.
- 528 is the Beachline. It used to be the Beeline and had a cute bee on all the signs, but some marketers must have gotten a hold of it and thought, Hey, it runs east and west, let's pump it up and call it the Beachline, dude.
- I-4 has a lot names. Not printable.
Enjoy, and say hello to the mouse for me!