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Walt Disney World

Walt Disney World is a resort and home to four theme parks located southwest of Orlando, Florida in the City of Lake Buena Vista and a few miles north of Kissimmee, Florida. Owned and operated by Disney Corporation, this park opened on October 1, 1971 and contains the Magic Kingdom, Epcot (Originally EPCOT Center), the Disney/MGM studios, and Disney's Animal Kingdom. Also located on the property are three water parks (River Country (now closed down), Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach) and Downtown Disney, a district for shopping and entertainment.

Walt Disney's idea of Walt Disney World was for a larger, more expansive version of Disneyland; a place that could constantly expand and not be as constrained by the need for land that Disneyland suffers from. Walt Disney World, especially as seen within Epcot, was to be a sort of "Disneyland of the future" where breakthroughs in science and technology could coexist with the original Disney vision of themed entertainment. Walt Disney also envisioned this project as incorporating a working community where his ideas about urban planning could be tested (he called this concept the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, or EPCOT (the theme park that eventually opened under the Epcot name bore little resemblance to this vision).

Although he particiapted in much of the planning for the project, Walt Disney himself never got to see the realization of his vision as he died in 1966.

The land within Walt Disney World is part of the Reedy Creek Improvement District which allows the Disney Corporation to exercise quasi-governmental powers over the area.

Walt Disney World has four main parks each with a main atraction that sereves as it's symbol:

Besides the four main theme parks within the Walt Disney World complex, another notable aspect is the large number of hotel resort complexes (both themed and non-themed) on the Walt Disney World property. The non-themed hotels are owned by private, non-Disney hospitality companies. The themed hotels include:

The Walt Disney World resort also includes five world-class golf courses. The five 18-hole golf courses are the Magnolia, the Palm, Lake Buena Vista, Eagle Pines, and Osprey Ridge (the last two are part of the Bonnet Creek Golf Club).

Walt Disney World paved the way for many other theme parks and attractions in the area, including Sea World and Universal Studios, and helped make Orlando a popular tourist destination for people from all over the world.

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