Five Tips for a Great Disney Vacation

Is there anything more fun than seeing the WDW Entrance sign when you arrive at Disney?

You’ve been planning and planning, and now you are here.  Here’s five tips to have a great Disney Vacation!

{Editor’s Note: This post originally ran on my friend Kristen’s site Tips for the Disney Divas and Devos on March 24, 2014.  You can read the original post on their site too!}

Congratulations!  You have made it!  You are here!  Walt Disney World.  After all that time, all that planning, all the excitement of hearing “is it time to go to Disney yet?”, you are finally at Disney World.  But, how do you ensure that you have a great trip and make your Disney vacation as memorable as you want it to be?  Here’s five tips to remember to help you make the most out of your vacation!

Tip #1: Go with the flow

Far too often, people think that they need to see everything and do everything on this trip or it won’t be a success.  My response to them is this:  If you insist on seeing and doing everything, you’ll stress yourself out unnecessarily, and you won’t have nearly as much fun as you would have otherwise.  My tip:  go with the flow.  Don’t go all Disney commando; slow down, enjoy the scenes, the sights, and the experience of just being in Walt Disney World — you’ll have just as much fun and so will your family!

Tip #2: Schedule some Dining Reservations for Character Dining

When you are traveling with your kids (and sometimes even without your kids) to Walt Disney World, one thing that they always seem to want is to get autographs and pictures with their favorite characters.  Fortunately, Disney has several Character Dining restaurants where you can enjoy a good meal and get photos and autographs with your favorite characters!  This is such a win-win for me; you don’t have to stand in line to see them, they come to your table for photos and autographs, and you and your family also get to recharge for the rest of you day too!

Tip #3: Take a lot of Photos

I know that this is a no brainer for many of you, but you can never take too many photos of your vacation in my opinion, especially if you have a digital camera.  So many of my favorite memories have been cemented in photos that I took of the event that all I need to do is look at them and I’m right back to that moment in time.

Sophie and Princess Jasmine at the Morocco Pavilion

Sophie and Princess Jasmine at the Morocco Pavilion

Tip #4: Stop to smell the roses

The road less traveled — at Disney, that can be hard to find, but if you slow down and look at things instead of just moving past them at light speed, you’ll have a more relaxing trip, a better vacation, and you might just find that those memories from the slower time might just be the memories that you cherish the most.  I know that this ties in with tip number 1, but it’s that important to me.

Tip #5: Experience more than just the parks — check out some resorts

During our last trip to Disney World, we took some time and went and explored Saratoga Springs and Old Key West resorts.  That was so much fun, it was a relaxing time, we got to see a lot of the things there that we had never seen before, and it was a great time spent looking at possibilities for future trips.

Thank you for joining us today!  What are some of your great tips for making your trip a great Disney vacation?  Let us know in the comments, and thanks!

Magical Blogorail

Magical Blogorail Red – Friendship Boats

Magical Blogorail


Welcome to those of you joining me from A Disney Mom’s Thoughts and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the 4th stop on our Magical Blogorail.

Thank you to my friends on the Magical Blogorail Red team for including me in their loop this month!  I’m excited to talk to you about the Friendship Boats — specifically the ones that you can ride from the top of World Showcase to the entrance closest to where it connects with Future World.

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The Friendship Boats are a great way to enjoy a relaxing ride around different parts of Walt Disney World!

In the picture above, this Friendship Boat is actually one that makes a journey from Disney’s Hollywood Studios to the Boardwalk area and from there on to the International Gateway of Epcot.  While this isn’t the boat that is used in World Showcase Lagoon, it is very similar, and the boat you ride in the Lagoon will have a similar structure.

I think that the Friendship Boats are a totally under appreciated mode of transportation around World Showcase.  When you’ve walked all the way around the 1.2 mile pathways of World Showcase a few times, it’s really nice to just kick back, relax, and let your Friendship Boat Captain take you around to the other side of World Showcase!  Trust me, on day 5 of your 7 day vacation your feet will be thanking you!

Of course, it’s not just the respite from walking that makes the Friendship Boats so welcoming — it also supplies some truly unique views of World Showcase that you don’t see very easily from the land!  For photography fans, taking a ride is a great way to get some new photos of your favorite pavilions!  Here are a couple of my favorites from the time we last rode the boats!

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I like this photo because the sun is really doing a great job of putting a golden glow on the China pavilion!

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This shot was taken from the Friendship Boats on their journey past the African Outpost.

There are actually two routes that the boats take.  One takes you from the Canada pavilion up to Morocco and back, and the other takes you from the Germany pavilion over towards the Mexico pavilion and back.

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World Showcase Lagoon with the Friendship Boat docks listed.

It should be noted that taking the Friendship Boats is not the fastest way around World Showcase — and it should also be noted that the Friendship Boats are closed down early to prepare for Illuminations.

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Home is Where the Mouse Is.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop ~ The Disney Point
2nd Stop ~ Magical Mouse Schoolhouse
3rd Stop ~ A Disney Mom’s Thoughts
4th Stop ~ My Dreams of Disney
Final Stop ~ Home is Where the Mouse Is