You may have noticed by now, but we go to Disney World a lot. Some people in my family think I am crazy, but I am now realizing after having had a kid that Disney World is my happy place! And for so many people around the world they might only have one chance to visit the most magical place in the world.
So if you live far away and can’t hop in the car and make a four hour drive like us, here are some recommendation on how to get the most out of your stay.
When to visit:
- Mid fall or early spring – This is a down time for tourists at Disney World. Within these times you can also find the best deals on hotels. Also during this time the temperature tends to be much cooler (although it was 80 degrees on our last visit in November).
- Magic Kingdom Special Events – Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party or Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are two events that run select nights from September through December. These parties require separate tickets but are less than a general admission ticket. The number of tickets are limited so the park tends to not be overly crowded like most days. The parties start at 6pm but you can enter the park as early as 4pm. These really are special events that are a must do if you are visiting during this time.
- Other Special Events – Each of the parks have special events running all year round. Here is a great list of what you can find.
Where to stay:
- You can’t go wrong with just about any Disney resort. Staying along the monorail route would be my first choice, but it can be pricey. It makes it so easy to get back and forth to Magic Kingdom (our favorite). But all of the resorts have transportation anywhere on the Disney resort property. Also if you stay at a Disney resort, your parking is free at any of the parks which can cost you $15 a day. Once you pay for the day at one park, then you can park at any of the other parks without paying again.
- Budget Resorts – These are great little/huge hotels that have so much to offer. They aren’t luxurious but how much time do you really spend in your room! Our favorite is the Disney’s All Star Sports Resort. I have been staying here for years!
- Moderate Resorts – We have stayed at a couple of these and our favorite is The Cabins at Fort Wilderness. The cabins sleep 6 – 8 people so you can possibly fit two families in one cabin. Fort Wilderness offers lots of amenities such as golf carts, outdoor movies, easy access to Magic Kingdom and great shops and restaurants.
- There are many other great places to stay in the Disney surrounding area. We recently stayed at the Wyndham Grand Bonnet Creek resort and had a wonderful stay. They are located on the Disney World property very close to Downtown Disney. We stayed in one of their Family Rooms with a King bed and Bunk beds. My two year old was so excited, but we did have to finagle some contraption to keep him from climbing on the second bunk. It was a great room and was quite reasonable! I would definitely recommend looking into it if your desired Disney resort is full.
Managing you time – Where to go:
- Any time day or night – Downtown Disney is a great place to shop and eat all day (almost all day, 8:30am -2am), every day. Plus they have a bowling alley, movie theater, live music and Cirque de Soleil! You can dine in the rainforest or enjoy a prehistoric meal. There is no cost to enter and parking is complimentary.
- Theme Parks – There are four main theme parks at Disney World; Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom and Epcot. Explore maps for each of these parks and depending on your stay, determine which parks your family would enjoy the most. If you aren’t quite sure, try doing a half day at each and then returning to the ones you enjoyed the most with your remaining time. For example, if you have a three day ticket, day one would be morning at Magic Kingdom and afternoon at Epcot. Then day two would be Animal Kingdom in the morning and Hollywood Studios in the afternoon. Then save day three for the park that you want to explore more. Just remember the warmest part of the day is the early afternoon and the parks with more indoor activities are best saved for those times.
- Water Parks – Walt Disney World has two water parks called Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. You can add these attractions on to your ticket with a water park option or purchase them separate. My little man is still a little young so we haven’t taken him yet, but my brother in law absolutely loves them! They are his favorite, such a kid at heart!
There are lots of people that can help you plan your Disney vacation to maximize your time and money. And when you get your travels plans set, start your countdown clock to experience the most magical vacation to the happiest place on earth!!
Second star to the right, and straight on til morning! – Peter Pan