Although I’m a huge fan of the Disney Parks, sometimes I want (or need) a non-park day. Ready to learn how to enjoy the PERFECT non-park day? Then read on …
It’s a non-park day, so you don’t have to get up at the crack of dawn (unless of course, you want to). When I’m traveling with the family, I do like to get up about an hour before them (usually about 7:00) so that I can slowly get ready, do a short pilates routine (using my all-time favorite program – The Sisterhood and my travel yoga mat), and then have some time to enjoy a cup of coffee and a book on the balcony. Heaven.
After such a leisurely start, I’ll put breakfast together for the family while they get ready. Since we’ll be eating out much of the day, it saves money to eat breakfast in the room – and we are all fine with not hitting a restaurant in the morning. If we just have a studio, breakfast will be something simple like fresh fruit and peanut butter toast, bagels or some type of breakfast bar. If we are staying in a one-bedroom, I might do eggs and hashbrowns – depends upon our mood.
Insider Tip: Don’t have a car? You can easily get groceries delivered to your hotel using Shipt. We used it on our recent trip and within an hour and a half of ordering had everything we needed delivered right to the front door. And, if you won’t be in the room, the groceries can be left with the bell desk. All orders over $35 are FREE shipping. Use THIS CODE to save $50 on your annual membership – that makes it only $49 which you’ll easily save on your first order! Think about it this way – breakfast in the room versus $30 at a restaurant. Just two breakfasts have paid for an entire year of Shipt (and you can use it at home too!). We also purchase a case of water, some fun sodas for the kids and perhaps some adult beverages for us – Shipt delivers it all!
Now is the best time to hit the pool. It’s Florida, so it’s probably warm enough even late morning and if you get down there before noon you’ll have a better chance of getting chairs in a spot you prefer. The Disney pools are wonderful and it’s easy to spend a few hours relaxing and having fun.
Insider Tip: If you don’t care about waterslides and such, the quiet pools can be very relaxing. We’ve found that splitting our time between the main pool and the quiet pools can make it feel like a totally different pool experience.
After pool time, it’s time to clean up and explore! Some of the resorts have activities going on and if so, be sure to check those out and participate. The cast members do a great job of interacting and making sure guests are having fun. When my kiddos were elementary age they LOVED these different programs, especially the ones at Animal Kingdom Lodge, but even now as teens they still enjoy participating in many of the activities.
If you don’t want to participate in activities at your resort, hitting Disney Springs or doing some resort hopping can be a lot of fun. Disney Springs is the perfect place to pick up your souvenirs, do a little shopping and even listen to some live music. We enjoy grabbing a drink from one of the many vendors (the wine slushies at Amorette’s are divine) and wandering around. If it’s time for that frequent afternoon thunderstorm, spend a few hours watching a movie at the AMC Theater or bowling at Splitsville.
Insider Tip: Don’t forget to stop by the Ghiradelli store. As you walk in they will be passing out a free chocolate square. Yum!
Resort hopping is another family favorite. We’ll head over to the monorail and hop on and off at each of the monorail resorts (The Contemporary, The Polynesian and The Grand Floridian). Check out the shops, enjoy a snack and just check out the vibe. Each of these three resorts is VERY different so it’s a lot of fun to spend time at each one.
Insider Tip: If your kids (or you) like to trade pins, make sure and bring them along. All the stores in the resorts as well as the front desk will have pinboards and since you aren’t trying to rush from ride to ride you can take your time!
Since you spent such a fun day relaxing, tonight is the perfect time for a special dinner at one of the resorts or at Disney Springs. Saana at the Animal Kingdom Lodge is our personal favorite, but there are many wonderful choices.
End your night enjoying the Electric Water Pageant on the Seven Seas Lagoon – you can view it easily from Disney’s Polynesian Resort on the beach area. So grab a Dole Whip from the Pineapple Lanai stand and then walk over to check out this water show. You can see it from there every evening at about 9:00 PM. (The times have been known to change, so you might want to ask at the front desk to confirm).
Sounds like the perfect day right? If you are spending a week or more at Disney a day like this will make your trip so much more relaxing and give you some different memories. I recommend at least one non-park day per trip. Your vacation will be all the better for it!
Starting to think about your next Disney Trip? As a Magical Vacation Planner, I can help you plan the perfect vacation. Be sure to jump on my special Disney Fun Newsletter if you are at all interested in travel to Disney. At least once a month I’ll be sending out all the best deals and promotions for Disney – if you want to be in the know, sign up HERE.
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