Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Ice at Gaylord Palms, Orlando

We had heard so much about the annual 'Ice' show at Gaylord Palms but had never managed to get ourselves together to visit for ourselves. But this year on Milano's 9th Birthday, he chose not to have a party and to go somewhere special instead. After weighing up his options- which are many when you live in the middle of Florida- he decided on 'Ice' If you are unfamiliar with this seasonal show you can view a video on it HERE  We booked for the combined snow tubing and Ice sculpture show.
For our family of five it was a total cost of $200 including tax. However, beware, as Gaylord Palms charge a whopping $20 parking fees! Luckily our friend came with us and warned us in advance.
Here are some highlights of our visit. I'll give you some tips for going, after the album.

We were advised by friends to wrap up well beforehand. So we tried our best to find the boys ski suits at short notice. Only Milano's was handy. The temperature in the Ice display is a freezing 9 degrees!

They provide these dashing blue coats that have snap fasteners, so if you don't have warm outerwear with you, you are covered. Everything you see here is carved from ice!

How amazing is this? A whole team of artisans from China came over and carved these Ice sculptures. This guy was working in the exhibition. I wouldn't like to work in this room for long. Brrr.

I had to get a shot next to the 1950's housewife of course.

 The final sculpture was this amazing nativity. So much detail. It was awesome.

It was truly wonderful and yes, very, very cold! We were relieved when we exited the display, to see a stand selling hot chocolate.

We soon warmed up and were ready to do some serious snow tubing!

That's my good friend who was crazy enough to join us.

So... my tips for a great visit. I guess we were lucky because we went after school on a Monday night. So we had the place pretty much to ourselves. It's open until 3rd January I believe. Now with the snow tubing, we realized pretty quickly that as our boys are almost 8, and 9 & 10, we didn't need to purchase our own tickets as there are spectator benches at the side of the chutes/ slides where we could keep our eyes on them at all times. However, in busy periods I imagine you'd have to stand at the rail to see your children. Next time we go, we will save ourselves some cash and just watch.
If you visit the Ice show, take gloves! You really need them. Those fetching blue coats are provided but gloves are not. The snow tubing is open from 10a.m. and your ticket covers unlimited rides. that part is great value. Finally I'd say just watch out for those extra costs. A round of 6 tiny hot chocolates and 3 cupcakes cost us $40. There is the opportunity to decorate gingerbread houses too, which looked so cute, but we passed as the boys were more interested in the snow tubing. I think the gingerbread house cost $29.99 for the decorating kit.
Altogether a wonderful fun time was had by all. If you are visiting Orlando in this season, please check it out. Florida residents get $4 discount on tickets. We made some very special memories at Gaylord Palms, we came home exhausted but happy. Its something different from the theme parks and also a great place to go if you get rained off for the day.

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