It doesn’t matter how long your Walt Disney World vacation is, you will want the first day to be special. That is what this list is all about. The information here is for a full day at Walt Disney World, not necessarily the day that you check in. It would be easy to mention individual rides or attractions, but everyone is different. Thrill seekers would not want the same experiences as those who like family rides. Instead, here are suggestions that everyone should be able to use. Here are the top 12 experiences to make the first day of your Walt Disney World vacation magical.
12) Buy Your Ears
One of the first things that you should do when you arrive at Walt Disney World is to buy your Mickey Ears. After all, you will want to wear them for all of your pictures. Have in mind what you want ahead of time so that you won’t spend a lot of time looking for the perfect pair at the beginning of the day.
11) Character Breakfast
What better way to start a Walt Disney World vacation than with a character breakfast? You will enjoy a delicious, all-you-can-eat meal, and you will end up with some fantastic pictures. A character meal is a great way to introduce the little ones to the larger than life figures. Reserve a meal in a park before it opens, and you’ll have a chance to see it before the crowds hit.
10) Magic Kingdom or Not?
There are two streams of thought when it comes to hitting the Magic Kingdom the first day of a Walt Disney World vacation. Many (possibly most) people like to start their vacations there because it is the heart of the magic. Others prefer to wait and do everything at the other parks first, saving the beauty of the Magic Kingdom for later in the trip. If you decide to make the Magic Kingdom the first theme park that you visit, make sure you arrive early. You will want to experience Let the Magic Begin. It’s a great way to feel welcomed at Walt Disney World, and it can be the perfect way to start your vacation.
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9) Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade
If you decide to spend part of your first day at the Magic Kingdom, make sure that you take the time to watch Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade. It’s a great way to see a lot of characters, and it will put a smile on your face.
Running from attraction to attraction will wear you out. Slow down a little bit, and enjoy some of the Streetmosphere. That’s the word that Disney uses to describe the live shows that take place in the middle of the action. Enjoy the Dapper Dans, or wonder how the Jeweled Dragon Acrobats do what they do. There are many different things that you can see that are Streetmosphere, and you don’t have to wait in another line to experience them.
7) Mickey Bar or Pretzel
The first full day of vacation is special, so you’ll need to enjoy a special treat. What could be better than something that is shaped like your favorite mouse? Mickey Pretzels are filling, and Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bars will cool you off. You can’t go wrong with either snack.
6) Icon Pictures
Remember those Ears that you bought first thing in the morning? Put them on and take a few pictures in front of the park’s most famous structure! Whether you’re standing in front of Cinderella Castle, or you have the Tree of Life behind you, you will be glad to have some photos from your first day. You might even decide to change your profile picture on your favorite social media site.
A hug from Mickey, followed by a picture, are experiences that you will want at some point on your Walt Disney World vacation. The first day of your holiday is a good time to get some of those pictures. Towards the end of your vacation you’ll be tired, and that could show in your photos. You’re fresh and on top of the world on the first day of your vacation, making it the perfect time to get in line for the characters.
4) Your Must-Dos
The first day of your vacation isn’t the time to try to hit everything. Instead, make a list ahead of time of everything that you must do. Hit those the first day of your vacation. Use FastPass+ when possible. Get in line for a must-do that you didn’t get a FastPass+ for as soon as you arrive at the park. Get all of your must-dos done so you won’t chance missing something.
3) Enjoy a Nice Dinner
You’re going to need to take a break at some point during your day, so plan to have a nice dinner. If you can, make a reservation for a table service meal. You can also have a great time in a counter service restaurant. Try to find a place with indoor seating so that you can enjoy the air conditioning, and don’t rush through your meal. Taking a few minutes to relax will allow you to recharge for the rest of your evening.
You need to experience fireworks the first day of your Walt Disney World vacation. They are the perfect way to seal in the magic that you experienced all day long. If you don’t want to face the post-fireworks masses, watch from one of the nearby resorts. There are great places to see the fireworks at all of the Magic Kingdom resort area hotels. Head to Disney’s BoardWalk to see the fireworks from both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. You’ll be able to enjoy the show without having to worry about the crowds.
1) Stop and Stare
One thing that you will need to do on your first day at Walt Disney World is to stop and stare. There is something special around every corner, but too often guests just rush right by. Don’t be like that, truly appreciate the details. Stop and smell the roses, literally. You are at the beginning of your vacation at the most magical place on earth. Allow yourself to get caught up in that magic.