There’s no denying that while a Walt Disney World vacation is amazing, fun, and full of memories that will last a lifetime – it can also be hectic, tiring, and stressful – lots of walking, the heat, the lines – it can easily get overwhelming even for the most seasoned Disney travelers. Which is why my family and I figured out the secret to relaxing at Disney years ago (and have been using it ever since!) – Take A Day Off From The Theme Parks. So, if you’re going to be in Disney World for 6 full days, only plan on going to the Parks for 5 of them, and spend the 6th day relaxing, and exploring the rest of the World (the DISNEY World, that is!) Check out some of the stuff you can do in Disney that doesn’t require a Theme Park Ticket:
Shop: Every Disney World Resort Hotel has at least one (many have several!) souvenir shops, and they all carry some pretty awesome stuff! These aren’t just some tiny little spots to grab a postcard either – they stock all Disney merchandise – from apparel and mugs to snacks, tech accessories and much more! Of course, if you’re looking to give your credit card a serious workout, then Disney Springs is the place for you – an open marketplace style area full of stores, restaurants, live entertainment, bars, clubs, and more! Disney Springs is accessible from any of the Disney Resorts and Theme Parks by bus/boat, and is a perfect place to spend an afternoon/evening. You’ll find plenty of Disney shops here but they also have some other unique places as well – you will have a ton of fun browsing and picking out the perfect souvenir(s)
Eat: A lot of people think “oh since Disney World is an amusement park they probably just have regular theme park food – burgers and fried foods” – when in reality the opposite is true! Disney World is definitely a “foodie” paradise – they offer SO many different and unique cuisines and dishes that it would be impossible to try them all in one trip (unless your trip was like 2 months long or something – now there’s a dream!). They really go the extra step above and beyond to ensure that the ingredients they are using are fresh, and that they are keeping it interesting and always coming up with new menu/food items for guests to try. Moroccan, African, Chinese, Japanese, English, Irish, New American – these are just some of the different varieties of cuisine you will find around Walt Disney World – and the good news is, you don’t need a Theme Park Ticket to try most of them! The Disney Resort Hotels as well as Disney Springs offer some truly world class dining experiences – so if food is your thing, you’ll definitely want to venture outside of the Parks and try some new and exciting food!
Splash: The On-Site Disney Hotels are great for so many reasons, one of them being their POOLS – they all have multiple pools – which make the perfect place for some relaxation and fun away from the parks! The pools are huge, heated, have lifeguards on duty, and many of them feature fun fountains or slides for the kids. Oh – and if you’re really looking for some peace and quiet – take my advice and head to one of the smaller pools – the main pool is great for the kids, but tends to be packed full of little ones splashing around – the smaller pools tend to be tucked away (you might even have trouble finding them!) and are much better for some quiet poolside lounging.
Explore: This is probably my favorite thing to do of all – to just wander around my (or other!) Disney Resorts – you never know what you might find when you do! Playgrounds/play areas, hammocks, hidden gardens/fountains – and more! It’s great to just take a walk and see all that the Resorts have to offer – Disney puts a lot of effort into all the little details, and you will see this carried out even through the landscaping and paths around the resorts.
We always plan a day away from the parks when we are at Disney World – it’s nice to escape the hustle, bustle, and LINES of the Parks – and enjoy all that Walt Disney World has to offer outside the four theme parks – which is a lot! Or – sometimes we lounge by the pool and take naps all day – hey – it’s vacation, we do what we want, and so should you!
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