What To Do In Disney World
I've been a Disney kid from the beginning. Growing up in Connecticut we would gladly seek refuge from the cold at Mickey's House. Much like we did this past week. Over the years our trips have looked slightly different- our vacations changing as we grow; and then of course with the addition of Madeline. But the fun stays the same. Here are some of my favorite things to do in Disney World:
1. Stay on Property: It's the easiest way to get to and from the parks, and the best bet at getting your full dose of all the characters. Get a room with a view of the park fireworks- this worked out great for us this last trip because MM is a big fan of the show, but doesn't love how loud they are. Plus you don't have to deal with the crowds leaving the park right after the show.
2. Eat: I just can't go to Disney on a diet. It doesn't work. The food is just too good. Yes, the snack at the parks and all the Mickey-shaped treats are great. But there are also some amazing sit-down restaurants on property. Definitely make reservations in advance- those things fill up fast. Just be sure to bring your work out gear with you to work off that extra dessert, or two.
3. Bippity Boppity Boutique: This was our first trip to the boutique, and boy was it something. I booked it on a whim, and was lucky to get the last available appointment for the entire week we were there. So definitely book in advance. Choose from a variety of pampering packages, and leave with a princess costume exclusive to the boutique. Madeline had a blast, and we left with some pretty great/hilarious memories.
4. Invest in a VIP Tour: If you're traveling with the impatient, I highly recommend. We typically use a guide for just one day, because its insane what you can accomplish when you don't have to wait in line. Disney's amazing guides will shuttle your party from park to park- entering through back entrances and offering yummy snacks upon arrival. The guide essentially acts as your "personal Fast Pass," allowing you to cut lines of any and all rides. This service can be arranged here or via the concierge at Disney resorts.
5. Watch the Daytime Parades: Especially if you have littles. Its a great way to get your fix of a show without having to keep them up late at night. Maddie almost preferred them to the rides this time around, and they were a great way to regroup and plan our next move for the day.
6. Pamper at the Spa: Some of the best facials and massages I've had have been at Disney resorts. Each resort has their own, unique spa- so research in advance which one has products you prefer. I love that the Grand Floridian spa uses Eminence products for their facials; and I fell in love with the Elemis products they use at the Swan and Dolphin Resort's Mandala Spa after a particularly amazing treatment.
7. Enjoy Character Dining: This is a no-brainer, and definitely something to do with the kids during your visit. The food isn't my favorite, so I like to do this during breakfast where you can still get something simple like fruit or oatmeal. But the kids just love a meal with Mickey, so it's a definitely must in my book.
8. Head to Disney Springs: Formerly Downtown Disney, Disney Springs is still a great place for adults and kids alike to have a blast. They have amazing restaurants, great shopping, a few shows and even a bowling alley. We love heading there for a day to enjoy an adult brunch followed by some shopping. If you're there on a weekend, definitely hit up the STK brunch for some good tunes and delicious food.
9. Pencil in a Pool Day: This past trip was unseasonably cold, but you typically can head to the pool year round here. A pool day is a definite must, because heading to the parks every day can be a bit much for both mom and dad and littles.
10. Don't Try to Do it All: I've been going to Disney nearly every year for most my life, and there are still things I'm just learning about. But that's part of the fun. Definitely don't try to do it all each trip, you'll go crazy. Plus, its such a happy surprise when you discover new things to do on your next trip.