inline imageIt gives me great pleasure to announce the winner of the SeaWorld Parks and Ocean Florida's once-in-a-lifetime competition.

The winning DIBBer will fly to Florida with their family for the chance to experience Mako - SeaWorld's newest ride and one of the world's only true ‘hypercoasters' - and one-of-a-kind family spin coaster, Cobra's Curse, at Busch Gardens Tampa.

This amazing prize includes a 14-night holiday to Orlando including return economy flights from London or Manchester for two adults and two children, accommodation at the recently renovated Avanti Resort and 15-days' car hire as well as VIP access to some of Florida's top theme parks.

The lucky winner and their family will get to experience the thrills and spills at all four SeaWorld Parks in Florida including swimming with dolphins at Discovery Cove, hand feeding giraffes on the Serengeti Safari at Busch Gardens Tampa, riding the world class water rides at Aquatica and going behind the scenes at SeaWorld to learn about the world renowned animal rescue programme. If that's not enough, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment are also throwing in dining packages and quick queue tickets for a real VIP experience.

So who is that lucky winner?

It is DIBB Member...

Loopyloo


Who I am sure is now living up to her username and going completely crazy!

Congratulations to Linda for winning this great prize. I for one can't wait to read all about it in the trip reports.

I would also like to take this opportunity on behalf of everyone to thank SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment along with Ocean Florida for providing this DIBB Exclusive prize.

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Ocean Florida
Advertorial by Ocean Florida - We’re ATOL Protected

inline image

Ocean Florida are ATOL Protected

* Book with confidence – ATOL & TTA protected *
* Receive a quote within minutes * Pay £75 deposit per person *

The Importance of ATOL Protection

In light of the sad news regarding the Low Cost Holiday Group, now is the time to stress the importance of ATOL protection. Ocean Florida are supported by the Travel Trust Association as well as ATOL, meaning your holiday will be 100% secure with us.

If you book with a company that isn’t ATOL protected you could lose money or be stranded abroad if anything goes wrong, but booking with an ATOL protected company means you’re in safe hands. Should anything go wrong you’ll be able to continue your holiday as planned or receive a full refund if you haven’t already travelled.

It’s easy to check whether the company you booked with are ATOL protected, just keep an eye out for the logo below in brochures, advertisements and on websites.


For those who have booked through the Low Cost Group, Ocean Florida are here to help re-book your USA holiday. Our UK call centre is open 7 days a week and is made up of a team of dedicated Travel Specialists who are happy to answer any queries regarding ATOL protection and your holiday.

About Ocean Florida
Ocean Florida have sent over 250,000 holidaymakers to the Sunshine State over the last 11 years. We’re proud to have a team of Florida Travel Specialists on hand 7 days a week, and a Welcome Centre in Kissimmee dedicated to helping customers during their holiday. We specialise in Florida villa holidays, US multi-centre trips, cruise & stay getaways and Florida attraction tickets, so find us at www.ocean-florida.co.uk or call us on 020 7939 7775 today.

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Ocean Florida
Florida Tix

inline imageThe first guests checked in to Lowes Sapphire Falls Resort at Universal Orlando yesterday.

This brand new Caribbean-inspired property is the fifth on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort

"The Caribbean-inspired Loews Sapphire Falls Resort at Universal Orlando Resort™ transports guests to paradise where blue waterfalls cascade across lush grounds, and the invitation to cool relaxation is everywhere.

Reminiscent of a leisurely estate in the heart of the tropics, every comfort has been built into this brand new jewel. With a luxuriously landscaped 16,000 square foot, resort-style pool surrounded by cascading waterfalls as its centerpiece, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort captivates at every turn. From the ruins of the stone turret in the lobby to the inviting island charm of the 1,000 guest rooms and suites, guests will be surrounded by a vivid and textured haven that is old-world and chic while still modern and timeless. Loews Sapphire Falls Resort offers an island escape in the heart of an unforgettable adventure."

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inline imageToday, excited guests gathered in Universal’s Islands of Adventure to help mark the official opening of Universal Orlando Resort’s newest mega attraction, Skull Island: Reign of Kong.

Skull Island: Reign of Kong brings the next generation of the King Kong legend to life on an unprecedented scale. The adventure begins as guests are transported deep into a mysterious world, where their mission is to discover creatures of unknown origin with the 8th Wonder Expedition Company, the research team leading the excursion. After braving ancient temple ruins and encountering hostile natives, they board a massive 40-foot-long, 17-ton expedition vehicle to navigate the increasingly foreboding terrain.



The specially designed expedition vehicle, which operates on a completely trackless ride system, takes guests deeper into the ominous island, where they soon find themselves in the midst of a brutal struggle between beasts of unimaginable size and ferocity.



Then, as those creatures turn on the expedition, there is an even more enormous, earth-pounding presence. It is Kong – in the flesh. Towering nearly three stories tall, he is so close that you can feel his breath and sense his emotion. But is he friend or foe?



And tomorrow, Universal Orlando’s fifth on-site hotel, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort, will welcome its first guests. The 1,000-room Caribbean-themed hideaway will feature the destination’s largest resort-style pool with a water slide, cabanas and a fire pit. The pool is surrounded by two sand beaches, a picturesque waterfall and a breathtaking lush lagoon, which will take guests to Universal Orlando’s two incredible theme parks and CityWalk via water taxi. The hotel will also feature several unique and immersive dining experiences.

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inline imageYou only have two more weeks to enter our great DIBB Competition.

Win a family holiday to Florida to brave SeaWorld Parks' new rides with this once-in-a-lifetime competition

Are you itching to put your nerves to the test on Orlando's tallest, longest, fastest rollercoaster this summer? Or day dreaming about getting your head in a spin on Busch Gardens Tampa's one-of-a-kind family friendly spin coaster? Well, this could be your lucky day!

To celebrate the opening of SeaWorld Orlando's newest rollercoaster, Mako (Friday 10 June), SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has teamed up with Florida holiday specialist, Ocean Florida, to offer DIBBers the chance to win the trip of a lifetime to the Sunshine State. Ocean Florida has sent over 250,000 holidaymakers to the State over the last 11 years.

Read more about the great prize here...

http://DIBB.in/11688469

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inline imageUniversal Studios Hollywood unlocked the iconic “Don’t’ Open, Dead Inside” doors to usher in its all-new “The Walking Dead” permanent daytime attraction, based on AMC’s top-rated television series and the most watched show in cable television history, which officially opens to the public on 4th July.

Universal Studios Hollywood has worked collaboratively with AMC’s “The Walking Dead” as a signature “Halloween Horror Nights” maze for years. This newly enhanced venture takes the highly sought-after experience from a seasonal, limited time offering to an exciting 365-day opportunity, raising the bar for themed walk-through attractions.

“‘The Walking Dead’ is a phenomenon that has successfully and consistently affected the psyche of viewers on a global basis since its debut,” said Larry Kurzweil, President of Universal Studios Hollywood. “We’re taking its authenticity to the next level by collaborating with the show’s award-winning production team to create a thrilling, living representation of the series that can only be experienced at Universal Studios Hollywood.”

To ensure authenticity of the attraction, Universal Studios Hollywood partnered with “The Walking Dead’s” creative team, including Greg Nicotero and KNB Efx to develop prosthetics, utilize original molds and painstakingly apply paint and detailing to attraction walkers. The integral involvement of the creative team not only inspires the emotional connection fans experience, it will be among the attraction’s key distinguishing characteristics that define it as a living representation of the show.

“After six years of working on ‘The Walking Dead,’ we have this great opportunity to take ‘The Walking Dead’ out of the studio, off the soundstage and into this amazing and truly one-of-a-kind attraction at Universal Studios Hollywood,” said Greg Nicotero. “Guests can now come face-to-face with live and animatronic Walkers that are indiscernible from the Walkers from the show. It’s very exciting, and I am thrilled to be a part of it.”

Coupled with authentic walker make-up effects, sophisticated animatronic walkers, substantially more detailed set design and costuming, and highly recognizable props replicated from the series, “The Walking Dead” attraction delivers an uncompromised realistic environment that brings guests even further into the most watched show in cable television history.

“The Walking Dead” attraction is located within an entirely new, custom-built structure, situated within an expansive building complex just inside the theme park’s main entry. Due to the intense nature of this experience, the attraction is not recommended for guests under the age of 13.

Remember this is in Hollywood and not Orlando.

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inline imageUniversal have released new info on their blog about the Volcano Bay water park.

Spanning 28 acres, Volcano Bay will transport you to a lush, tropical oasis inspired by the Pacific isles. Every step while you’re here can be filled with thrills, indulgence or rejuvenation.

Thrill seekers can enjoy unique experiences like surprising drop slides and our white-water action river. Or if you’re looking for a more relaxing experience, you’ll be able to enjoy our soothing winding river, serene beaches and two-story private cabanas.

Volcano Bay is made up of four incredibly themed areas with Polynesian influences ranging from Easter Island, Hawaii, New Zealand and more. Here’s what you’ll find in each area.



Krakatau:
At the heart of the park, you’ll see the 200-foot-tall volcano called Krakatau. By day, you’ll see its majestic waterfalls. And by night, the volcano will illuminate with blazing lava.
  • Three distinctive body slides are found at the rear of the volcano, and each starts off with surprise doors that drop out from beneath you:
    • Ko’okiri Body Plunge: A racing, 70-degree drop that will plummet 125-feet through the center of Krakatau. It will be the world’s first slide to travel through a pool filled with guests.
    • Kala and Ta Nui Serpentine Body Slides: Two intertwining slides where you’ll fall freely along 124 twisting feet.
  • Punga Racers: A high-speed race through four different enclosed slides featuring manta-shaped mats.
  • Secret Attraction: I can’t talk about this one yet, but it’ll be like nothing else in the park.
Wave Village:
Located at the base of Krakatau, Wave Village is a perfect place to soak in the sun and relax on the sandy shores. It includes:
  • Waturi Beach: A sparkling, multi-directional wave pool where you can swim, relax on the sand or indulge in private, one- or two-story cabanas.
  • The Reef: An adjacent leisure pool with calmer waters and exciting views of riders speeding through the Ko’okiri Body Plunge.



River Village:
River Village offers several family-friendly attractions and experiences and features:
  • Kopiko Wai Winding River: A gentle, winding river that passes through the volcano’s hidden caves, featuring spontaneous water effects and a journey through the cave of starlight.
  • Tot Tiki Reef: A whimsical toddler play area with spraying Maori fountains, slides and a kid-size volcano.
  • Runamukka Reef: A three-story water playground inspired by the coral reef overflowing with twisting slides, sprinklers and more.
  • Honu: An adventurous, multi-passenger raft ride that will soar across a dual wall.
  • Ika Moana: A twisting, multi-passenger raft ride that will glide across bubbling geysers.



Rainforest Village:
Rainforest Village features an incredible assortment of attractions for thrill-seekers, including:
  • Maku: North America’s first “saucer ride”, sending multi-passenger rafts speeding around three saucer-shaped curves.
  • Puihi: A breath-taking multi-passenger raft ride that will plunge you into darkness before bursting into a funnel and launching into a zero-gravity drop.
  • Ohyah and Ohno Drop Slides: Two twisting, adrenaline-pumping slides that launch you four- or six-feet above the water at the end.
  • TeAwa The Fearless River: An action-packed, racing torrent river where you’ll have to hang tight in your inner tube amidst roaring, whitewater rapids.
  • Taniwha Tubes: Four unique Easter Island-inspired slides with rafts for single or double riders.
  • Puka Uli Lagoon: A tranquil pool where you can swim and relax.

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inline imageJust as Disney did earlier this week, Universal have also given $1 Million to the OneOrlando Fund.

The fund has been established by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to assist those affected by this tragedy. The fund will support local non-profit organizations mobilizing to help victims and their families, the LGBTQ, Hispanic and all other affected communities—as well as organizations dedicated to solving the underlying causes of events such as this.

Universal made this statement.

Read more about the OneOrlando fund here...

http://oneorlando.org/

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Park Hours - Monday 25/07/2016

WDW & Other Florida Park Hours
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom
8:00am
~to~
11:00pm
Epcot
Epcot
9:00am
~to~
9:00pm
Animal Kingdom
Animal Kingdom
9:00am
Extra Morning Hours~to~
11:00pm
Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios
9:00am
~to~
10:00pm
Blizzard Beach
Blizzard Beach
10:00am
~to~
8:00pm
Typhoon Lagoon
Typhoon Lagoon
9:00am
~to~
7:00pm
Islands of Adventure
Islands of Adventure
8:00am
Extra Morning Hours~to~
10:00pm
Universal Studios
Universal Studios
8:00am
Extra Morning Hours~to~
10:00pm
SeaWorld
SeaWorld
9:00am
~to~
8:30pm
Busch Gardens
Busch Gardens
9:30am
~to~
9:00pm
Aquatica
Aquatica
9:00am
~to~
7:00pm
LEGOLAND
Legoland
10:00am
~to~
7:00pm
Extra Morning Hours +1 Hour Early Entry for On-Site Hotel Guests.
Extra Evening Hours +2 Extra Late Hours for On-Site Hotel Guests.
Full Schedule of Florida Park Hours

Disneyland Resort Park Hours
Disneyland Park
Disneyland Park
8:00am
~to~
12:00am
Walt Disney StudiosCalifornia Adventure 8:00am
Extra Morning Hours~to~
10:00pm
Extra Morning Hours +1 Hour Early Entry for On-Site Hotel Guests.
Full Schedule of West Coast Park Hours

Disneyland Paris Park Hours
Disneyland Park
Disneyland Park
10:00am
~to~
11:00pm
Walt Disney StudiosDisney Studios 10:00am
~to~
9:00pm
Extra Morning Hours +2 Hours Early Entry for On-Site Hotel Guests.
Full Schedule of DLP Park Hours

US Dollar Rates
Cash/Travellers Cheques
Covent Garden FX  $1.2941
FAIRFX  $1.2875
M&S  $1.2735
Travelex  $1.2800
Prepaid MasterCard Rates
CaxtonFX  $1.2800
FAIRFX  $1.2864
Travelex CP  $1.2800
Updated: 18:30 25/07/2016
Print Quick Conversion Sheet

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Euro Rates
Cash/Travellers Cheques
Covent Garden FX  €1.1753
FAIRFX  €1.1735
M&S  €1.1640
Travelex  €1.1663
Prepaid MasterCard Rates
CaxtonFX  €1.1650
FAIRFX  €1.1710
Travelex CP  €1.1663
Updated: 18:30 25/07/2016
Print Quick Conversion Sheet

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