Top 8 Non-Park Things to do at Disney World
When taking a Disney World vacation, your first thought is typically experiencing the theme parks. But there are so many fun non-park things to do at Disney World! It’s nice to take a break from the parks and experience the other magical offerings at the resort. Here are our top 8 favorite non-park activities.
Walt Disney World offers multiple transportation options and it’s so fun to experience them! The monorail offers fantastic views of the Magic Kingdom area resorts and Seven Seas Lagoon. The Skyliner gives you a new way to view Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and other resort hotels. And don’t forget the boats! You can take a relaxing boat ride between some of the resorts and Disney Springs or the parks.
The word “free” isn’t often associated with Disney but there are some super fun free activities found around Walt Disney World! Enjoy an outdoor movie experience beneath the twinkling stars at a Disney hotel, indulge in all-day poolside entertainment, catch surprise visits from beloved Disney characters at the Disney Resorts, join a thrilling scavenger hunt, and partake in various other exciting activities.
Explore Resort Hotels
Within the Walt Disney World Resort, you’ll discover some of its most enchanting destinations nestled within the Disney hotels. Without the need for a Disney Park ticket, you’ll have ample opportunity to explore and visit multiple Disney Resort hotels of your choice. You might even consider an extended stay at one, particularly when you’re not on a tight schedule for Early Theme Park Entry. While exploring a Disney hotel, make sure to explore its captivating lobby, browse its shops, wander its external areas, and savor a delightful meal at its dining establishment. Why not enhance your visit by combining it with a memorable dining experience or a relaxing break for a refreshing beverage?
Visit Disney Springs
Exploring Disney Springs at various times of the day promises a distinct and evolving experience. In a standard Disney vacation, your visit to this shopping and dining hub might be limited to a single occurrence. Nevertheless, without the need for a Disney Park ticket, you can allocate more time for multiple visits.
In the morning, you can enjoy leisurely store browsing, and benefit from the smaller crowds that will allow you to take your time admiring the Disney merchandise. In the afternoon, relish a delicious lunch at one of the restaurants, followed by a sweet stop at Gideon’s Bakehouse or the Ghiradelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop for dessert. For an evening Disney Springs experience, start with a delightful dinner and then savor a beverage by the waterfront or find a cozy spot to unwind while enjoying live entertainment.
Experience the BoardWalk
Disney’s BoardWalk features multiple options of dining, shopping, and entertainment. An array of performers stroll along the boardwalk, ready to showcase their talents when you’re in the right place at the right time. The prime moments to witness these performances are during the late afternoon or, particularly, in the evening, when they tend to be most popular.
Several Boardwalk games are open during the evening, and on occasion, they can also be found open in the afternoon. These games are reminiscent of what you’d typically encounter at a state fair or along the Atlantic City Boardwalk. They encompass activities such as shooting basketball hoops to win prizes and engaging in water gun races.
In the evenings, head to Jellyrolls for dueling pianos and some adult beverages. Or if you want to get your dance on, check out Atlantic Dance Hall next door.
If your Disney itinerary revolves around spending time in the Disney theme parks, you likely dine at the park’s restaurants. However, this can cause you to overlook a plethora of outstanding dining options in Disney Resort hotels and Disney Springs. During your non-park days be sure to explore these exceptional dining establishments:
- Whispering Canyon Cafe in Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Boma – Flavors of Africa in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
- Kona Cafe in Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
- Ale & Compass in Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
- Grand Floridian Cafe in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Try Something New
Many hidden gems and activities await you throughout the Walt Disney World Resort, often unbeknownst to most guests. When you’re not exclusively focused on the Disney Parks, you’ll find ample opportunities to embark on new adventures. Here are some delightful activities to consider during your Disney vacation beyond the parks:
- Learn to ride a Segway at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
- Ride in Aerophile at Disney Springs
- Take a painting class
- Go to Sangria University at Disney’s Coronado Springs
Frequently, after a Disney vacation, one departs feeling even more fatigued than upon arrival. To fully immerse yourself in all that the Walt Disney World Resort has to offer, this weariness becomes somewhat inevitable. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to keep in mind the purpose of your vacation. While creating cherished memories is undoubtedly one motivation, another equally important reason is to escape your everyday routine and unwind.
During your vacation, it’s important to take at least one non-park day. Doing so will allow you time to sleep in, relax by the pool, and even have an early night if you wish.
What non-park activities have you experienced at Walt Disney World?
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