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kid in galoshes“So much for hanging out at the pool!”

Our feelings exactly when the weather turns sour. In a recent article in the Chicago Tribune, Eileen Ogintz describes her family’s recent Orlando vacation during a tropical storm.

Weather, of course, is the one thing you can’t control on vacation. Ogintz advises that if you’re traveling somewhere tropical and think a hurricane might derail your plans, it’s smart to get travel insurance; look for policies like those from Travel Guard that insure kids free.

So what do you do in Orlando when it’s raining too hard for the pool, it’s too miserable to hit the theme parks (even though the lines would be short), and your rain jackets are still soaked from the night before? Here are her solutions:

Time for Plan B!

One excellent option is Epcot, with over 30 indoor attractions to fascinate and entertain the whole family, no matter how hard it’s raining. Celebrating the human spirit, Epcot is comprised of two distinct areas: Future World, featuring technological innovations, and World Showcase, highlighting the culture and cuisine of 11 countries: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, Canada and the United States. From ImageWorks/The “What If” Labs and Mission Space to Turtle Talk with Nemo’s Crush, you’ll find more ways than you can count to explore, discover, learn and have a ball!

If you’re a shopper, a rainy day represents a fabulous bonus! Orlando offers more than 1,000 stores, including three major indoor malls, three outlet malls and Downtown Disney (home of the world’s largest Disney store as well as Disney Quest, five floors of interactive fun such as creating your own CyberSpace Mountain).

Don’t forget about museums. Orlando is home to many, including WonderWorks Orlando, the Orlando Science Center, the Orlando Museum of Art with drop-in classes and the Mennello Museum of American Art.

For true out-of-this-world thrills, the Kennedy Space Center with over 60 interactive exhibits is less than an hour’s drive. Highlights include the newly-opened Space Shuttle Atlantis which offers a 360-degree view of the orbiter as only astronauts have seen it before, and International Space Station NASA astronaut and flight engineer Don Pettit demonstrating microgravity using characters from Angry Birds®. It’s launch time!

Feel like bowling? Check out the new Splitsville bowling alley at Downtown Disney. Or relax and enjoy some pampering at Senses, the full-service spa and health club at the Grand Floridian Resort. There are 19 spas in Orlando to choose from; many have special treatments for kids, such as hair braiding and air brush tattoos at Nick Hotel or teen facials and princess fizzing pedicures at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando.

For the adventurers among you, rainy weather can be an excuse to try something you’ve never done, like simulated sky-diving in a vertical wind tunnel at iFlyOrlando. Even preschoolers (ages 3 and up) can experience the adrenaline rush of free fall without having to jump out of an airplane.

So what do you do if it rains on your parade? With a little ingenuity and a lot of positive thinking, even the worst Orlando weather doesn’t have to wreck what might turn out to be your best family vacation.


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