Toting a four-year-old and a one-and-a-half-year-old, our first journey to Disney World with our grandchildren was a hoot. Our youngsters visited Disney World for the primary time once they had been round 4. We knew what a joyful expertise it was for us and our kids that we needed to take our oldest granddaughter and began planning for her fourth birthday.

A Disney World journey for youthful children could be loads of work, but additionally superb enjoyable. Watching the wide-eyed amazement as beloved characters come to life proper earlier than their eyes is a second to not be missed. Your grandchildren’s first Disney World trip might be crammed with princess clothes, tiaras, magic bubble wands, and Buzz Lightyear costumes.

When you plan forward, be ready for plans to alter, and benefit from the loopy Disney World ambiance, you should have an exquisite time —  and your grandbabies will too.

The Disney World Parks

Every park has its challenges and rewards. To keep away from attempting to cram all of the Disney enjoyable into one exhausting day, select a multi-day, Park Hopper Pass choice. Underneath the present Disney laws, Park Hopper hours begin at 2 p.m.

Viewing rhinos at Kilimanjaro Safaris at Disney Magic Kingdom.

Viewing rhinos at Kilimanjaro Safaris

Picture credit score: Sandi Barrett

1. Animal Kingdom

I feel Animal Kingdom is the most effective park for the primary day to ease into the go to. The parks could be utterly overwhelming for younger children and exhausting for us grandparents. There are good trip choices relying on the age of your grandkids.

The Kilimanjaro Safari opens at 8 a.m. which is ideal in case you are an early riser and staying on Disney property. The children love watching all of the unique animals. They enchant even very babies.

One other child-friendly trip in Animal Kingdom is the Wildlife Express Train. The quick prepare trip, which for the little ones is an journey, drops you off at a winding path by way of the “jungle.” In the end, you land at a kid-friendly petting zoo and exhibit.

2. Magic Kingdom Should-Do Rides

My finest recommendation for the Magic Kingdom is to plan your must-do rides. There are such a lot of rides to select from, however you need to determine that are the must-dos for you — whether or not it’s “it’s a small world”, Mad Tea Occasion, Dumbo, or one thing else. Once you take your grandkids to Disney World they anticipate a magical time and that is the park to deliver on the magic.

Intersperse wild, tummy jostling rides just like the Mad Tea Occasion —  I can solely take a lot spinning —  with rides the place you sit. The PeopleMover, “it’s a small world”, and the Market Carousel are calming choices.

Watching the fireworks show over Cinderella’s Fortress is a time-honored custom, and everybody needs an ideal view. Magic Kingdom’s Predominant Road can turn into extraordinarily crowded through the festivities. If you need a superb view, arrive early. Company begin lining up two hours forward of time and navigating a stroller by way of the crowds is difficult.

3. Epcot And The World Showcase

Epcot isn’t just for adults, it’s price spending at the least half a day right here with younger grandchildren. Frozen Ever After is a must-see for any younger Disney fan, and Soarin’ Around The World is one other fantastic trip. When you find yourself prepared to take a seat, go to The Seas with Nemo and Friends; it’s cute and acceptable for all ages.

4. Disney’s Hollywood Studios

I’d skip Hollywood Studios in case your grandchildren are actually younger. There’s a lot to see and do on the different parks. When they’re of their tween years, they’ll love the wild rides right here.

Goofy, the author's grandchildren, and their father at Chef Mickey's.

The creator’s grandchildren with their father at Chef Mickey’s

Picture credit score: Rose Pacific

Disney Lodge Should-Haves

A Disney Resort Lodge is the most suitable choice for a keep. Every themed lodge gives nice choices, however I like Disney’s Contemporary Resort. The monorail runs proper by way of the lodge, making it straightforward to get to the Magic Kingdom. Moreover, they host breakfast at Chef Mickey’s. Ensure to get a reservation at Chef Mickey’s beforehand or be part of the walk-in waitlist the day of by checking if there may be eating availability on the My Disney Experience App. The primary objective with little ones is to maintain it straightforward and easy.

5. A Nice Pool

Mixing in a couple of pool days is tremendous essential. Grandpa needs to go to the park on daily basis, however with little ones, it’s essential to have downtime. Nothing will get everybody prepared for a nap higher than a swim.

6. Keep Shut To The Park

When you can’t keep within the park, let’s face it, the on-property lodges are dear. Search for a lodge that’s near the park. The Springhill Suites by Marriott is near all of the motion for a family-friendly worth. For different choices, flick through this list of lodges which can be taking part in Disney’s Good Neighbor Lodge program!

7. Kitchen

Groceries could be delivered proper to your rental, lodge, or Airbnb. You don’t need to waste time operating across the grocery retailer. Plan a couple of meals and wholesome snacks earlier than you go. Organize them to reach if you find yourself unpacking and settling into your momentary residence.

Getting your infants’ favourite snacks akin to the appropriate yogurt, crackers, and fruit will assist hold the youngsters cozy and common —  an important consideration to maintain them completely satisfied. Younger kids could be choosy eaters and having your personal meals will prevent cash.

The author's grandchild with a bubble wand at Walt Disney World.

The creator’s grandchild with a bubble wand at Walt Disney World

Picture credit score: Sandi Barrett

Further Surprises

Disney parks are designed to course of plenty of visitors. Be ready for lengthy traces and throngs of individuals by stashing a couple of further surprises in your magic bag of methods.

8. Enjoyable Toys

You may order well-liked objects like the ever-present bubble wands earlier than you go for lower than in-park costs.

9. Disney Wearables

Ordering Disney pajamas, character t-shirts, and Disney hats earlier than you go is a enjoyable approach to unfold the magic with out breaking the financial institution. You should still need to buy a small trinket or two on the journey for memento functions.

10. Genie+ Service

Improve the Disney magic through the use of the Genie+ Service. You must arrange an account on the My Disney Experience App, however you’ll want to do that anyway. The service prices $15 per particular person in your group. You may have all members of your get together on the account which makes reserving parks, rides, and extra a one-stop-shop.

As of June 2022, Disney has eradicated the pre-purchasing choice for Genie+. Company should buy the service on the day of their park reservation.

11. Lightning Lanes

The Genie+ Service is one of the simplest ways to keep away from lengthy traces to your most desired rides. You may enroll your whole group for a time window to entry the lightning lane for a selected trip. There are a couple of restrictions; it’s relevant for sure rides, however many well-liked ones can be found for an upcharge. Relying on the park and your timing, you may anticipate to improve two or three rides to lightning lane passes —  in case you arrive on the park early.

12. Order Meals

With the My Disney Expertise App, you may order and pay for meals at counter service eating places all through the park utilizing the Cell Order characteristic. No want to face in line for a snack! You can be notified when your order is prepared for pickup.

13. Wait Instances, Character Meet And Greets, PhotoPass, And Extra

The My Disney Expertise App will show wait occasions for rides, reveals, peak necessities, character meet and greet occasions and places, in addition to PhotoPass photographer places, and extra. It is a useful software that can make your expertise much less frantic.

Visiting a princess at Magic Kingdom Park.

Visiting a princess at Magic Kingdom Park

Picture credit score: Emily Barrett

Visiting Walt Disney World

14. Purchase A Park Hopper Go

A Park Hopper Go provides extra to the price of your ticket and provides flexibility to your go to. With Park Hopper tickets, you may take pleasure in points of interest on the Magic Kingdom within the morning, journey by way of Pandora in Animal Kingdom through the afternoon, then end the evening watching Epcot’s new nighttime spectacular Harmonious.

15. Begin Early

Go early within the morning. It’s all the time crowded however goal to be on the park when it opens. Head straight to the must-do trip of the day and luxuriate in a shorter line, then meander from there.

In case you are staying on property or at a Disney Good Neighbor Lodge, you’ve gotten the benefit of 30-minute early entry to the parks. This may make a giant distinction in wait time for probably the most sought-after rides.

16. Take A Noon Break

With a multi-day park hopper move, you’ve gotten the choice to depart the park and enter a distinct one. Observe that if in case you have a day move (with out park hopper entry) and reservation for a Walt Disney World theme park, you may go away the park and re-enter later that very same day. Reap the benefits of the noon droop and head again to the lodge for lunch, a swim, and a nap —  not simply Grampy, however the children too. After a refreshing break, you may be prepared to move again into the park.

17. Be A Versatile Planner

Lastly, be versatile. Pre-plan your days to find out which days might be park days and which might be pool days. That method, you should have a greater and extra environment friendly journey.

Joke: One time when my ladies had been younger, it was our sixth day getting into the park. My youngest daughter, 5 on the time, had a meltdown within the car parking zone. She threw herself to the bottom and screamed, “No extra Mickey —  no extra Mickey!” We had been lengthy overdue for a pool day.

A Good Walt Disney World Trip

It doesn’t exist. Don’t goal for perfection, goal for creating particular moments. Going with the circulate and having enjoyable is extra essential than getting on that final trip.

Visiting Walt Disney World together with your grandchildren is a magical trip. I can’t wait to deliver them once more when our grandson is sufficiently old to recollect the expertise and make priceless recollections.

Professional Tip: With the little ones, deliver mother and pa alongside. Give them an evening out, however deliver them to the park — little ones are exhausting and people teacups are traumatic for Gigi after the fourth go round!

For extra ideas and methods to planning your subsequent magical Disney trip, click on right here:


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