” What is the best age to take a child to Walt Disney World?”
“Aren’t you too old for Disney?”
“Aren’t they a little young for Disney? They won’t remember it.”
Three questions I hear on a regular basis. So, what’s my answer? No – no one is too old for Disney, and no one is too young for Disney. Each trip is a different experience. And, any age is the best age to go to Walt Disney World!
Taking a two year old to see Mickey and Friends will create memories for mom and dad. The photos will last forever! Is this the trip to experience all the thrills of Expedition Everest and Rock ‘n’ Roller-coaster? Probably not. This is the trip to experience the magic through the eyes of a child. Savor the smiles of joy and giddy giggles as your little one experiences Disney magic for the first time. Watch as faces light up when fireworks go off over Cinderella’s castle. Remember what it was to truly believe in magic.
Taking an eight year old will be a very different adventure. Ride all the thrills they want. They can keep up and go for a much longer time without a melt down. Take a break mid-day if needed. Go back to your resort, swim, relax, and have lunch. Then, hit the parks again! Eight year olds still believe in, and love their favorite characters.
My youngest was eight the first time he went to Disney. My oldest was ten years old. Eight and ten – look at those faces! There is no faking that kind of excitement, joy, laughter, or happiness.
Ok, so what about teens and adults? Roller-coasters, water parks, fabulous resort pools, and food keep teens entertained and going. Teens are also old enough to appreciate the scavenger hunt activities offered at the parks. “The Treasure of the Caribbean” is a treasure hunt around Adventureland. Solve the problem, find the treasure, report back to headquarters and collect your prize. There are multiple maps and treasures to go through. “Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom” is another interactive adventure for older kids, and kidults (kid-adults). You work your way through the entire Magic Kingdom solving problems to save the Kingdom. There are different levels, free playing cards, and maps. I hear people are into trading the playing cards as well. So, know what you have before you trade.
As an adult, the parks, rides, shows, fireworks, and parades are all great fun. Did you know there are some behind the scenes tours for adults? For example, “Backstage Magic” is a 7 hour tour of all four parks. “Holiday D-Lights” and “Yuletide Fantasy” are two different tours where you get to explore the ways Disney transforms for Christmas time. “Keys to the Kingdom” lets guests take a sneak peek at the technical and logistical sides of operating the park. EPCOT and Animal Kingdom have tours as well. There are some tours for families with children, but some are for ages 16 and older only.
If you enjoy the culinary scene, and/or adult beverages then you can eat and drink your way around EPCOT. Really, the “Food and Wine Festival” at EPCOT is for adults. It’s held in the fall when schools are in session. There are some fine dining experiences I recommend for grown ups only. The California Grill is located on the 15th floor of the Contemporary Resort. The service and food are amazing, and the view is stunning! Jiko, in the Animal Kingdom Lodge has one of the largest collections of South African Wines in the US. On my list for a future visit is Victoria and Albert’s. There are only 18 tables in the main dining room, and a chef’s table that seats ten. They list 700 wines on the menu, and have 4,200 more in the cellar. Children under ten are not allowed at the Chef’s table. There is a dress code requiring evening wear for women, and jackets for men. This is definitely a grown up dinner.