Close your eyes and think about Walt Disney World. Did images of princesses and castles and fairy godmothers dance in your head? You’re not alone. I’d wager that’s what most people think of, myself included. When I first found out I was pregnant I couldn’t wait to buy princess dresses, sparkly tiaras and have tea parties. I even had the most amazing Cinderella Coach crib picked out for the nursery! Disney Addict that I am, I naturally couldn’t wait to book her first Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique appointment. That is until I found out that she was a he!
I quickly learned Disney isn’t just about Princesses. Now with a few trips under my belt as a boy mom, I’d never want to do Disney any other way!
Curious about ways to make your little prince’s trip special? Read on to find out just how magical a Disney trip with boys can be!
No Bibbidi Bobbidi? No problem!
One of the most special moments in a young Disney Addict girls life is when she finally gets to live out her princess dreams with a magical transformation at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. However, if you thought this meant the boys have left out think again! Over at the Magic Kingdom in Adventureland is the Boutiques swashbuckling counterpart. The Pirates League is a must do for any little Cap’n in your crew!
Little Buccaneers are first whisked off for a facepaint transformation (which often includes a scar or a 5 o’clock shadow). Next up is the costume (if the package you chose includes one). After that, your scurvy dogs are given their pirate names and take the pirate oath. Finally, your matey will be given a goodie bag with an eye patch, sword, and official Pirates League sash so that everyone knows your salty sea bandit belongs to the fiercest crew at the Magic Kingdom.
With several packages to choose from, there is something for every budget. You won’t be parting with nearly as many gold Doubloons for the Pirates Leauge as you would for the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique either.
Ears, Cuts & Pixie Dust
Did you know that the Magic Kingdom has a real working barber shop right on Main Street? The first haircut at Harmony Barber Shop has been a tradition for many a Disney family, ever since the Magic Kingdom opened in 1971. At just $25, the first haircut package is both memorable and reasonably priced. Every cast member at Harmony Barber Shop is a state-licensed cosmetologist and delivers truly high-quality haircuts. In addition to being state-licensed, Disney Magic abounds in this quaint little barbershop as all of the cast members also seem to possess the magical ability to get even the most anxious little ones to be still and happy during their milestone first cut.
Every first haircut package comes with a certificate commemorating the occasion, a keepsake snip of hair to take home (complete with pixie dust), and a set of Mickey Ears embroidered with “My First Haircut”.
Though the first haircut experience does have an age limit of 1 year or younger, the barbershop is open to all ages
The Force is Strong in Your Little One
If your youngling aspires to one day be a Jedi, then you absolutely must sign them up for Jedi Training Academy: Trials of the Temple. Young Padawans can sign up to Take on “the trials of the temple” and become Jedi during this 30-minute show. I don’t want to give away too much about the show (which is entertaining even if you don’t have a little one participating), but suffice to say that the Padawans learn the essential skills they need to face even their darkest fears. Speaking of dark fears, two familiar faces make an appearance: Darth Vadar and Kylo Ren attempt to tempt the Jedi apprentices to the dark side of the force. Each young apprentice has an opportunity to fight back or join the dark side. There may even be a surprise or two in store!
The good news? This experience is completely free!
The not so good news? Availability is limited and this experience is extremely popular, so getting your youngling signed up will take a proper plan. Arriving at Hollywood Studios at rope drop is essential and I recommend going straight to the sign-up area (at the Indiana Jones outpost just past 50’s Prime Time Cafe) first thing. It’s 100% worth the mad dash to get your little one in (but please don’t run through the park, don’t be that guy).
Ahoy Land Lubbers!
Unquestionably one of my favorite things to do at Walt Disney World is the Pirate and Pals Fireworks Cruise! It is just simply fun for the whole family. It takes place at the Contemporary Resort most night when Happily Ever After is scheduled.
The sheer number of different activities at this event is, in large part, why this is such a favorite in our house. From a scavenger hunt to a dessert smorgasbord to unique character greets to sailing bay lake for spectacular fireworks viewing there is something for everyone!
Before you set sail, Captian Hook and Smee meet each of the newest members of the pirate crew. Photopass photographers are on hand to capture your sea pups first encounter with the ol’ Codfish himself!
Aboard the ship pirate jokes, swashbuckling tales and even a song or two entertain while you wait for the main event–the best seat in the house for Happily Ever After fireworks right from Bay Lake!
Reservations for this high spirited event are highly recommended as it does tend to sell out.
Beyond Princesses: Character Meets & Dining
There are plenty of engaging character meets throughout Walt Disney World that are sure to delight the boys in your family!
In the Magic Kingdom, you can meet the big guy himself– Mickey Mouse on Main Street. ( You’ll also find him in the other 3 parks as well) Over in Storybook Circus, Dare Devil Goofy and Snake Charmer Donald meet in Petes Silly Side Show. The Crystal Palace also hosts a delightful character meal featuring Winnie the Pooh and friends.
Beymax can be found at Epcot and has a fun meet and greet set in Sanfransokyo. Donald meets in the Mexico Pavillion dressed as a mariachi band member. One of my favorite character meals resort wide is Garden Grill, found in the Land. Chip, Dale, Mickey, and Pluto meet here dressed as farmers which my son loves.
Over at Hollywood Studios Buzz Lightyear and Woody greet budding Space Rangers in the all-new Toy Story Land. Chewbacca, Kylo Ren, and BB8 meet in Star Wars Launch Bay. Over near Star Tours, Olaf meets fans in a fun summer scene. The Play N’ Dine Disney Junior Breakfast is a great option for the littlest of your bunch. For older boys, The Sci-Fi DineTheater is perfect for boys of all ages.
At Animal kingdom, The new dance party with Scrooge McDuck, Launch Pad, Donald, and Huey, Dewey, and Louie is perfect for your dino-loving boys. Even though Rafiki’s Plant Warch is scheduled to close for a while, I’m certain Rafiki’s meet and greet will still be available elsewhere (tip: sing “Asanti Sanna Squash Banana” when meeting Rafiki for a fun interaction!) Tusker House has a great character meal that is perfect for boys! Meet Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy dressed in their safari gear!
Also, something to consider– doesn’t underestimate how much boys will enjoy meeting princesses! Interactions between your little prince’s and Disney’s princesses are truly memorable. Snow White even has a fondness for leaving big red lipstick prints on their cheeks!
With all the change taking place at Walt Disney World right now it’s easy to think that boys have been forgotten, but as you can see, there is still plenty to do with boys. This is far from a comprehensive list, so plan away! There’s a world of magical experiences for everyone to do enjoy just waiting for you and your family to discover!