What Would Your Dream Itinerary Look like If You Went to Disneyworld?

Updated on June 07, 2011
P.S. asks from Houston, TX
17 answers

We have the opportunity to take our 5 yo to Disneyworld from 10 days up to 2 weeks over Christmas, so I'm looking for any suggestions on what parks to hit and if there are any that would be better to cover in 2+ days. We want to do it all and take him everywhere!

I've never been so I'm starting my research now. I already have my Disney parks video ordered.

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So What Happened?

You guys are awesome! Thank you so much. Still waiting for my Disney video but I'm going today to get my copy of the Disney guide book. If I have any questions about anything I'll PM the ones who offered to answer my questions. One thing I might change is going before Christmas. I had no idea how crowded it would be.

Some of you said to pack snacks..some of you said do the dining plan. I'll do my research and see what will work for us.

Thanks for all the suggestions!

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answers from Houston on

I Love Disney! taking a 5 year old is a very very good age, he will love it and get to enjoy almost all the rides on the parks!

Christmas is an extremely busy time of the year for the parks, so will need to pack a LOT of patience!

I will send you a private message since I do have tons and tons of recommendations, especially if you have never been. ( I have gone 3 times in the last 2 years).



answers from Joplin on

I would much prefer to see some of the shows that they have than stand in endless lines for the rides...my daughter is going with her grandparents in September and she has a guide book that seems really helpful. I would buy a book so I could plan my day...

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answers from Waco on

I echo the recommendation to get a book. I bought "The Complete Walt Disney World 2010" for our last trip and all of the recommendations were spot on. I would highly recommend springing for a hotel on the monorail if you can afford it. I would also start making dining reservations ASAP. Christmas is the busiest time of year at Disney and many of the parks reach their capacity very early on in the day so plan to start your days bright and early. For a 5 year old, Magic Kingdom is probably where you'll spend the majority of your time, but I would plan to see all of them - Animal Kingdom, Epcot, and Hollywood Studios. Also, just plan a "down" day to enjoy and hang out at your resort and/or a day to check out Downtown Disney. Some have said that Epcot is for adults and I have to disagree. Some aspects of Epcot are more geared towards adults, yes, but Epcot was designed to be a park dedicated to technology and innovation. It's more of a "learning" environment than some of the other parks. We have always loved visiting there and frankly one of the best rides in the entire park, Soarin', is there. It's fantastic. I have a head full of knowledge when it comes to Disney so if you have any specific questions, just send me a private message and I'll be glad to help. You will love it, though. I heard someone say once, "If you can't get into the Christmas spirit at Disney, then there is something wrong with you." Ha! :)



answers from College Station on

All parks, except Hollywood studios need 2 days. But, Christmas is a MADHOUSE, so build in some time during the day to go back to the hotel and rest.
If you are staying on property, great! Go to the park that had the extra magic hours the day before. That park will be almost empty before 10am. We literally walked on to rides when we got to the park early (better for our kids, too) and went to the one that had the extra magic hours the night before.
Then, you can have lunch, go back to the room for a couple hours, catch a nap, go back just before dinner and still enjoy yourselves.

Have fun!



answers from Houston on

I've been going to Disney World for 25 years. The last time I took kids, I was soooooo disappointed, I swore I'd never go back. When Walt died, so did his values at the park. My daughter was 5 the last time I was there and after having a bug fart in our faces in the Animal Kingdom movie (in the tree of life) she wouldn't go into another movie. In Epcot, the dinosaurs suddenly started blowing snot!! I've never thought of myself as a prude, but I have to tell you, I sent Disney a letter telling them how sorely disappointed I was - one day we only got on 10 rides in the Magic Kingdom!!! And I NEVER recieved a response back. Apparently there's no cut off number for how many people enter the park. I personally think having youngsters wait in line for over 20 minutes is a crime - especially for the price you pay for tickets!!! I would tell you that the earlier you get there, the fewer people also, while the fireworks are going on!! Might be best to go back to the hotel and take a nap, swim and eat dinner OUTSIDE the park before going back for the evening!!!
Epcot is for adults - shopping, eating. There's rides inside The Land, Exxon and the countries of Mexico & Netherlands. There's movies in Canada, China, America and possibly others too but they're really geared for adult sightseeing. The food is FABULOUS in France - all the chefs/staff are from their original countries.


answers from St. Louis on

My parents took me on a 4 day disney cruise that was awesome then we spent 6 days at different parks and one day at sea world.



answers from Houston on

We went to Disney 3 years ago with a 9 and 12 year old. It was absolutely fabulous! We were there when the parks opened and left when they closed. We ate one meal each day in the park and were amazed that the food was no more expensive than stopping at a fast food place. Of course, the sit down character meals were more, but we only did one. We also ate at breakfast at one of the Disney hotels with all the characters. Reservations have to made way in advance, but it was worth it, to know we were going to see lots of characters and it was cheaper than a sitdown meal in the park with the characters. Check out the TourguideMike.com website for more great ideas. Also, be sure you use the FastPass system. It is free and allowed us to never wait more than 10 minutes for any ride at any park:)



answers from Chicago on

We went this past March with our 2 year old. I highly reccomend the "Unofficial Guide to Disney World" We followed the "plan" and did not wait in a single line for more than 10 minutes! My family thought I was crazy at first, but after the first day of no lines, they were on board! PM me if you want more info


answers from Lincoln on

My friends took me to DisneyWorld when I was 5 months pregnant (trip planned before so I could help with 18 month old while mom in conference & dad&bro went on big rides) - we went 2 days, had a day "off" to swim & downtown Disney & nap, then 2 more days. It was nice to break it up a little. I wasn't overly impressed with Epcot like I thought I would be from others opinions. Animal Kingdom had just opened but what was there I liked - however I couldn't do the safari and I've heard it's worth it to get up early for that. I agree the main one Magic Kingdom is a must though!! We learned when my friend lived by Disneyland to plan a late lunch (2ish) at a sitdown restaurant. Time to relax, the food is better, and not a whole lot more. Although I think there's food plans now?
Have fun!!! Wish I could tag along!



answers from Houston on

Unoffical Guide to Disney. Read it cover to cover.
The parks will be crowded over Christmas Break so don't try to do too much-especially since you have more than enough time with 10 days+.
For Animal Kingdom, walk into the park and go straight back to the back for the safari ride. The animals are more active in the mornings and the lines aren't so long.
In Epcot my kids loved the food ride in the Food Pyramid, the Norway ride, Mexico has a little boat ride, Soaring and the Race track are there so don't think there is nothing to do there. It is not as Disney-themed as the other parks but educational and a nice break. France has fabulous food as does Italy.
STAY ON SITE!!! LOVE the Contemporary because once you get off the monorail you are in the hotel. Even at the Polynesian, you get off the monorail and have to walk mother mile through the property to get to your room. The convenience of being on site and having that monorail to zip back to your room is priceless.
Have fun!!! Disney is magical.



answers from Philadelphia on

Well we are going to be at Disney next Friday for 13 days. I will check it out and back to you.



answers from Jacksonville on

One park a day, every other day and not May-August/September.
If you have to cut out a park here are the ones you should hit, in order of my kids favorites.
Magic Kingdom (possibly 2 days there)
Hollywood Studios
Animal Planet

My kids didn't enjoy Epcot at all, and neither did I. We've never taken the kids to the water park since it's a little extra for our military tickets, but we've always stayed in a condo that had a waterpark. It's never as crowded as Blizzard Beach!
Also, take snacks. We have a cooler that fits perfectly in our stroller and we snack all through the day and usually only eat 1 meal in the park, if we stay all day.
We live 2 hours away so we go often and learn something new for next time every visit! Have fun!!!!


answers from Ocala on

Sea World is a MUST. = )
Disney is BIG and it is very hard to get to see everything there in one day. You might need two days for Disney. "The long lines are the problem."

For us we bought a loaf of bread and some ham, turkey, and chesse and we made sandwiches and we carried them around in a back pack and we ate that for most of the day and then we bought the food there at dinner.
We also carried some bottled water in the bottom of the back pack.

Make sure that you take your little one to the bathroom when you see one, because when he is like I GOT TO GO, it will be hard to find one at that point and then there might be a line.

Congrat's and Have a blast.

= )


answers from Tampa on

There are 4 main parks... my dream vacation would be to spend 3 days at each park. There is SO MUCH to do and see at every park that you have to miss so much because it's so DAMN expensive and we are lucky to have been able to spend ONE day at each park, not even full days.

We have started saving up for another Disney vacation that will be in 2013!! Or we can consider the Florida resident savers pass (no summers, no holidays) and do 3 day vacations over the weekend - 1 weekend per park. I refuse to go to any theme parks over the summer anyways and wait until it gets at least 10 degrees cooler in Nov/Dec before we do anything.

We also saved a lot of money by packing our lunches, snacks and drinks.



answers from Austin on

We have been taking my son to Disney since he was 6 yrs. old. He is 11 now. We are Disney fanatics. The best time to go to Disney is the first 2 weeks of December and also cheaper in price. No lines for any rides those first 2 weeks. You have to stay on Disney Property and you have to get the dining plan, do not go without the dining plan!!! Make your dining reservations 180 days before you go. Chef Mickeys at the Contemporary is a must character meal. The restaurants are awesome and you will not want to miss out on the dining experiences at Disney. Make sure you go to all 4 parks. Epcot will probably not be as exciting for a 5 year old. Magic Kingdom is more age appropriate as well as Animal Kingdom. Animal Kingdom Resort is amazing, Wilderness Lodge is amazing, Polynesian is awesome too. Those are my favorite. Hope this helps.



answers from Houston on

If you are wanting to stay only within the Disney complex, I would plan at least 2 days for each park. Disney World during the Christmas holidays is unbelievably crowded. Often the parks will reach capacity before noon each day, and you will have to wait until people leave to be admitted inside. You will need the extra time at each park if you want to do "everything". Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom are musts. MGM is cool, though it does have not so interesting parts. EPCOT is great for some, absolutely boring for others. If your little guy is a science fiend, he will enjoy the front side of EPCOT.

Read up on all the information you see and find what works best for your family. Plan, plan, plan. You will want to have an itinerary mapped out for your day to day activities. Also, you will want to make reservations for any dining WAY in advance, as they will book up early.



answers from Dallas on

I recommend the book "The Unofficial Guide Walt Disney World". It has a wealth of info and the most important part - they have itineraries at the back of the book. All you have to do is follow them ride by ride, they're genius!

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