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After you’ve ridden Space Mountain and taken a selfie in front of Cinderella Castle, there’s still plenty to explore at the most magical place on earth. Save room in your itinerary—and your budget—for these under-the-radar activities at Walt Disney World.

RELATED: Try these 14 healthy Disney World food options

 

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 No passport required for the Wild Africa Trek. Photo: Kent Phillips

Embark on a safari
Strap on a vest with a gazillion pockets and prepare to embark on the Wild Africa Trek at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. During the three-hour private excursion, you’ll walk across a rope bridge, ride through the savannah in a safari vehicle and get up close with the giraffes, rhinos, crocodiles and other creatures living in the Safi River Valley. Nighttime safaris are also available.

Learn to surf
Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park offers a chance to hang ten. Whether you’re a first-timer or an experienced surfer, you can ride the waves during a surf lesson in the park’s wave pool.

Go parasailing
The closest beaches to Orlando may be an hour away, but don’t let that stop you from enjoying watersports. At Sammy Duvall’s Watersports Centre, adults, teens and even kids can soar high above Bay Lake at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Choose a solo or tandem parasailing experience.

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The lakes and canals around Disney World have been known to house bass up to 14 pounds. Photo: Disney

Go fishing
Disney has no shortage of rides and entertainment, but sometimes a laid-back fishing trip is all you need. The park offers a handful of spots for catch-and-release fishing, whether you cast off from the dock or embark on a guided largemouth bass fishing boat excursion. No equipment? No problem. Disney World sells all the gear you’ll need.

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Shoot a bow and arrow
Channel your inner Merida during the Fort Wilderness Archery Experience, which offers anyone age 7 and up the chance to take a 90-minute archery lesson. Class sizes are limited to 10 archers, so make reservations well in advance and expect lots of one-on-one attention.

Go scuba diving
Ariel and Nemo aren’t the only ones who can embark on an undersea excursion at Disney World. At Epcot Seas Adventures, certified scuba divers can splash into Caribbean Coral Reef, the park’s 5.7 million-gallon saltwater aquarium. As you swim among dolphins, sea turtles, sharks(!) and thousands of other creatures, your family and friends can watch from the pavilion’s giant windows. DiveQuest participants can also buy a DVD of their experience.

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Go ahead and geek out over seven hours of Star Wars mania. Photo: David Roark

Have the ultimate Star Wars experience
May the force be with you as you blast off on a day of all things Star Wars-related at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The seven-hour(!) Star Wars Guided Tour is packed with out-of-this-world fun: Have a meet-and-greet with Chewbacca and Kylo Ren, watch two live stage shows, indulge in a Star Wars-inspired dinner at Backlot Express and much more. Even the littlest fans can get in on the action with Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple.

Get a haircut
It’s easy to miss Harmony Barber Shop, an old-fashioned storefront on Magic Kingdom’s Main Street, USA. But a visit to the tiny shop is a tradition for many families who flock to Disney World for their child’s first haircut. Little customers receive mouse ears and a certificate commemorating their first haircut, but folks of all ages are welcome.

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Get cozy during a secluded carriage ride around Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground. Photo: Disney

Take a horse-drawn carriage ride
You don’t need a fairy godmother to enjoy a scenic carriage ride. Feel like the royalty you are as you travel along the banks of the Sassagoula River at Disney’s Port Orleans or ride through the forest at Disney’s Fort Wilderness as deer, rabbits and other forest dwellers frolic.

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Tagged: Florida, Orlando

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