The Origins Of Orlando And Disney

Do you know how Orlando came to be named? Here's how.Orlando, Florida, the world's biggest playground, was named in honour of Orlando Reeves, an army sentry killed during the first Seminole.What began in the 1830s as an army outpost grew into an agricultural supply line with the expansion of The South Florida Railroad. Orlando became a centre for cattle, cotton, and citrus plantations.

In the early 1960s, Walt Disney, very secretly and anonymously, bought thousands of acres of what was then farmland, orange groves, and swamp marshes. News of this activity reached the press, and he was forced to divulge his plan to build a one hundred million dollar resort and theme park.He envisioned an oasis where travellers could take their families and live out the kind of fantasies he had as a child.Walt Disney's secret was out, and the hysteria surrounding the possibility of a tourism centre in Central Florida caused civic leaders to grant special zoning laws to help bring his dream to fruition.In 1971 Disney World opened its doors, and Orlando has never been the same.

Today, at Disney World, Epcot, and rival theme parks such as Sea World and Universal Studios, it is possible to swim with sharks, battle pirates, be chased by a T-Rex, fight villains with Spiderman, journey to the moon, and even watch the filming of a major motion picture.Walt Disney's dreams now draw more than forty million visitors a year.


Terry Gale owns a beautiful vacation villa at Tuscan Ridge. For more Florida vacation tips, visit the Last Minute Villas blog.

By: Terry Gale


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