With Disney closed around the world so many of us are missing the magic! This list could easily be titled “15 Things I Love about Disney World” or “15 of My Favorite Disney Things To Do at Disney World”, but with the parks being closed it hardly seems like any fun telling you what you must do at Disney World.
But we can reminisce together about all the things we love most at Disney World and get our countdown calendars ready for when Disney tells us the gates will open back up. “Open, open, open”… Does anyone remember that old commercial?
So until then my Disney friends, enjoy reading about some of the things I miss most at Disney World. Maybe, you’ll be able to add a few things to your own must-do Disney World bucket list.
1. The Magic Behind the Berm
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It’s true, as soon as you pass under the train station at the Magic Kingdom “Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday tomorrow and fantasy.” Walt Disney designed the Magic Kingdom to block the outside world by building a berm or large hill around the perimeter of the park. In doing so once you enter it’s like you’ve left the outside world and all its troubles behind. I think we could all agree right now that we’d love to leave the outside world and this big ole pandemic behind, even if just for one day!
2. Disney Food
I don’t love to eat but I do LOVE to eat at Disney! This makes my husband absolutely crazy that I will pay double just because it has a little (hello a lot) of Disney magic wrapped around it. The food is extra good, the snacks extra snacky and enjoying a treat with friends in the parks makes for a perfect day!
3. Disney Friends
My favorite meet up place is Disney World (or Disneyland). I’ve met so many great people at Disney either through social media or my travel agency and let me just tell you it’s one of the best things about Disney magic.
Sure, you can enjoy a great family vacation here, or a perfect Girls Getaway but the Disney family you’ll meet if you extend beyond that is truly amazing. Some of my most favorite people are my Disney buddies. We talk over social media and text and then plan great big meetups in the parks. Even though I live nearby having them arrive at Disney is like a mini-vacation for me too. I couldn’t be more grateful for these people!
4. The excitement of a new Epcot Festival
It’s almost always festival season at Epcot and the opening of each new festival is like the changing of seasons at Disney World. There’s an excitement in the air when opening day happens.
If you haven’t made a day of eating (and drinking) your way around an Epcot Festival, what are you waiting for? (ok maybe the parks to open right now) Plan on attending a festival as soon as humanly possible!
5. Mickey Mouse
Call me crazy but this 41-year-old girl still LOVEs to meet up with Mickey Mouse! I literally get excited every single time. But the even better meetups are when Mickey shows up as a surprise to an event. I’ve been known to all-out cry just at the sight of him.
Mickey Mouse signifies big dreams, hard work and many accomplishments for me. Plus some Disney magic too!
6. Main Street Performers
I’ve spent many a day in Magic Kingdom meeting up with friends, popping in to check something out, having breakfast or lunch and then popping back out. In fact, sometimes I don’t ride a single attraction while I’m at Magic Kingdom! But I always enjoy the magic of Main Street. The performers are part of that transformation as they sing along or share their stories of the parks as they whisk you away to another time and place. It may be the thing I miss most right now!
7. Leaving Central Florida
The MOMENT you arrive at Disney World it’s like you’ve left Central Florida. Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love Orlando but when you arrive “on property” at Disney World it’s like a whole new place. Also known as the “Disney bubble”. The street signs are different, the vibe is different and so is the fun. No matter what park, resort or restaurant you go to you’ll arrive in a different era and story. If only I could be magically transported out of 2020!
8. Disney Pool Days
Disney pool days are some of my favorite Disney World days. We will literally spend the night at a resort just to get to spend two days at the pool!
Picture this – kids are happily entertained by the greatest games, music, and activities Cast Members can come up with, they slide endlessly with new friends and swim until their little hearts are content. All while you get to lounge poolside with your favorite beverage. Then like magic the cabana boy shows up and delivers lunch! Calhoon, PLEASE take me back to Disney!
9. The Skyliner
This newest mode of transportation at Disney World is like an attraction in of itself with NO park ticket required!
I love to ride along and see the tops of the buildings and a big overview of what’s going on below only to arrive at some of my favorite places. You can ride the Skyliner to Hollywood Studios or Epcot or use it for a fun bar/restaurant crawl for an adult night out. No Uber required! If you haven’t been on the Disney Skyliner yet make sure you add it to your next park trip! Note that you don’t have to be staying at a Skyliner Resort to ride.
It’s that whole-home away from home thing, being transported to another place, poolside drinks thing. If you’re lucky enough to live by Disney make sure you plan a staycation, or two, each year to the Happiest Place on Earth. You’ll thank me later, trust me!
If you’re of the school of thought that there’s no reason to pay for a hotel room in a city you live in, you’re definitely missing out. Give it a try, just once. I promise you’ll be hooked. You can thank me later!
11. The Thrill of my Favorite Attractions
I love to ride rides! I don’t have to ride every time I’m in the park and I’m generally not too picky about what we ride but I do have some favorites that bring out the laughter and excitement.
My personal favorites are Tower of Terror, Rise of the Resistance, Flight of Passage, the People Mover and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. I also really love Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain too! It might be shorter to just tell you I love them all! There’s something about riding that brings out the laugher and thrill in all of us.
12. The Excitement of a Trip to Disney
It’s been a whole lot of years since we’ve had a countdown to our next Disney trip. Since moving to Orlando 4 ½ years ago I’ve headed to Disney World whenever I could. It’s only 9 miles away so short of real life obligations I could literally go anytime. Being close by hasn’t ruined the magic for me and while I probably did take for granted that it was “right there” it didn’t’ keep me from going often.
But I didn’t have that anticipation and longing that so many of you do. I’ve replaced the anticipation of Disney for myself by helping others plan their trips and enjoying their excitement and anticipation. I’ve also added to that with my own trips to Disneyland! There are definitely count down calendars for that!
With these new found park closures I’m now counting down my next visit just like so many of you. Disney World please open soon!
I’m not really a runner but I’ll do anything for Disney (or so my husband says!). I absolutely love RunDisney weekends. I have a group of girlfriends I run with and each race we get better and better.
I don’t love the early wake-up time but I do love running from character to character, getting my medal at the end of the race AND a good Disney breakfast afterward! See number 2, overpriced Disney food! Every mile is definitely magic!
14. Magic Kingdom Fireworks
“Wishes” is my all-time favorite Magic Kingdom fireworks show and I’m still super sad it’s gone. Any chance you’ll have a one-night Wishes revival, Disney?
I do love Happily Ever After too, but Wishes sings to my Disney loving heart. “Make a wish and do as dreamers do and all your wishes will come true.” There’s no greater truth than this.
Don’t miss fireworks at the Magic Kingdom, no matter what show it is.
One of the greatest things about living by Disney is seeing and hearing them from my front yard nightly. It’s not quite the same as being surrounded by the magic on Main Street but it’s pretty spectacular knowing they’re going on.
15. Disney Dates
Disney World for adults is totally a thing! I love Disney dates with my husband, dates with my friends and even dates with my kids. Disney is the perfect date night spot!
Gather your favorites and head out for dinner, drinks, a Skyliner bar crawl, nighttime fireworks… literally anything you can think of is a great Disney date night. I even enjoy riding rides without the kids because you know what that means, YOU get to choose what you ride next!
I hope you’ve loved my walk down Disney memory lane.
Comment and tell me what you miss most about Disney. I’m all ears!