December 16, 2013

The Ultimate Family Guide to Disney World, Florida This is a partnered post

If you are about to visit Disney World, Florida for the first time - particularly if you are doing so with children - then underneath the excitement there may be lurking just a hint of dread. Is it really possible for an adult to have fun in the froth and glitter that is Disney World? What are the chances that the grown-ups will spend most of the time grinning through gritted teeth and counting down the days to their return flight? Well, the good news is that it is entirely possible for adults to have a wonderful time at the world's biggest and most visited holiday resort. All it takes is a little planning.  

Range of Attractions
There are four theme parks to experience on your Disney holidays in the Sunshine State (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood Studios and Disney's Animal Kingdom), plus two water parks and a downtown area which contains restaurants, shops and theatres. Cirque du Soleil is currently performing in downtown Disney World, to staggeringly good reviews. If you only attend one show, make it this one.

Of the theme parks, Epcot is probably the most adult-friendly, being based on geography and technology. The celebrated fireworks and laser show, Illuminations: Reflections of the Earth, is staged every night and is well worth seeing. Food lovers are also well advised to visit Epcot for the range of international cuisines available.  

Food and Drink
Speaking of which, Disney holidays are not all burgers and fries - far from it. There is a vast choice of dining options, from 1950s-style diners to authentic seafood and fine restaurants. If food is your thing, you can have a great time at Disney World, even if you loathe animated characters and theme parks. Disney World also has several dining shows, where you can have your fill of delicious food while being entertained. These are great fun: some are aimed squarely at children, but some, such as the Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue and the Spirit of Aloha Show, have plenty for diners of all ages. They are highly recommended, but some must be booked in advance. I used the free official My Disney Experience mobile app to instantly make dining reservations inside the parks.

Final Tips
Regardless of the nature of your visit (all-inclusive or not, with or without dining included), make sure you take some change for tips. It is de rigueur to tip in the US, much more frequently than in the UK. Take your own sunscreen and a lightweight waterproof coat because it can rain, even in Florida. Most of all, take your sense of fun and imagination - armed with these, even the most cynical adult will have fun in Disney World!

Also, be sure and take advantage of Disney's Magical Express if available with your hotel.

Read more DisneySMMoms posts here.

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