If you are anything like me, you love vacationing at Disney World pretty much over any other destination in the World. Let’s face it…there isn’t much that Disney World can’t provide you with. Do you love the excitement of rides? How about a gourmet meal? Want to see live performances? Hit the buffet? Do you love being chauffeured around? Or, how about making your kid’s dreams come true? It always amazes me when I get the same exasperated look from a friend when I tell them we are going to Disney World. “AGAIN?” Yes, again. And again and again until I am too old to walk and then I’ll get a motorized wheelchair and GO AGAIN. And, I will have fun. Each and every single time, but the really cool part is…
I do something new and different every time I visit Disney World and I have been on property over 300 times.
I know many families that visit with only one purpose; visit Magic Kingdom. And, I can even feel some of you nodding your head in agreement. You think that if you can go to Magic Kingdom and wait less than 40 minutes to ride Peter Pan that your work is done. Fun has been had. Or, maybe you are in the group of people who have been to Disney World numerous times and now say to yourself, “I’ve done everything there is to do at Disney.” But, I am here to tell you that there is so much more to do! So, I hope that if you are reading this with your tongue firmly planted in your cheek thinking the same thoughts as many of my friends…watch me prove to you how much fun repeated visits can be to my favorite magical place.
9. Go Play Golf
“I have a golf course near my house and plus, I don’t play much, so this is silly” Ok, here is the thing. You don’t play on courses like this (ok, maybe some of you do!) These golf courses are managed by Arnold Palmer management, you know the guy that likes to put Lemonade in his Iced Tea. I am not the best golfer in the world. As a matter of fact, I am awful and I usually quit after I get tired or thirsty or my score goes above 150. But, the sheer beauty of these courses is astounding. And, where else will you be able to take a photo of yourself inside of a Mickey Mouse shaped bunker? (Magnolia course) The last time we played Osprey Ridge, we were followed by an entire herd of deer. We also got to see armadillos, cranes, possums, rabbit and gators! Did you ever imagine that you would see that many wild animals outside of Animal Kingdom? Every cart has gps built into it. Sometimes, the rate of play is slow, but what a beautiful and fun way to spend an afternoon!
Due to the popularity of scavenger hunts that were being done by outside companies (keep reading this for more information), Disney decided to get a piece of the action by introducing their own fun filled hunts. Disney offers a game known as the Agent P Adventure at Epcot. Equipped with cell phones, Doof and Major Monogram take you through many of the countries on a wild chase to foil Doof’s plans. At Magic Kingdom, you have a choice of Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom, where you stop the evil Villain’s plans of taking over the place by using sorcery cards (you get to keep the cards!) or you can become a recruit of Captain Jack Sparrow and defeat Barbosa in Adventure Land. Trust me, these are so much fun, you will not be upset you took the time to have fun with this over the rides.
7. Train to be an Olympian Archer
Have you ever wanted to learn how to shoot a bow and arrow? Lessons are given at Ft. Wilderness Resort. Guests ages 7 and up can join this 1 ½ hour long class that caps its limit at 10 people for a nice personal feel. Classes change schedule, so check with the resort before showing up! You’ll be shooting an apple off of your beloved’s head in no time!
6. Go to a Dinner Show
The Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Review at the Ft. Wilderness Resort is a BBQ feast with an adorable western themed story with full on audience participation and riotous slapstick. At the Polynesian Resort, you can enjoy some tasty Polynesian inspired delights with a story about the Spirit of Aloha. You will want to (and can!) dance along! This one is outside, though, so if you hate the Florida heat…stay away! Show times are usually a few times are certain evenings and you pay more to sit closer to the action, but the action is worth it. Make your reservations as far in advance as you can!
5. Drink your way around the world!
With all of the different countries in Epcot’s world showcase, twelve to be exact, you can have yourself a rootinest, tootinest drinker in the whole wide world! Each country has local beers, cocktails and shots that will have you wondering, “Where in the World am I?” In all seriousness, though, this does give you an opportunity to enjoy something new! And, remember to always drink responsibly, there are children everywhere!
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4. Sign up for an all day scavenger hunt
There are a few companies out there (sorry, you’ll have to research on your own for these) that set up all day scavenger hunt events! If your idea of fun is doing something totally different in the parks, this is exactly what you have been looking for! You will be set off on tasks that can last a few minutes or a few hours as you race against other teams to finish first and score the most points. You might have never noticed the names in the windows on Main Street, the addresses printed on the boxes scattered around Hollywood Studios or what address is above the door in your favorite shops before! Most even offer prizes or badges at the end of your long, but super fun day!
3. Find those Hidden Mickey’s
Have you ever been strolling along somewhere in Disney World and thought that your eyes were playing tricks on you? Have you ever found an image that you swear was Mickey Mouse in the carpet of your hotel? Or, maybe you saw a something on an animatronic that you thought must be Mickey! The popular book written by Steven M. Barrett has inspired many guests to look among the magic for their favorite mouse. Although there are silhouettes of characters hidden throughout the entire Disney World Resort, the favorite find is the “classic Mickey” which consists of one large circle with 2 touching circles that look like ears. Have you ever noticed another person with their nose against a wall or screaming behind a bench to their family, “I found one!” ? Chances are, they are spotting Mickey’s!
2. Go discover “YeHaa” Bob Jackson
I stumbled upon one of the greatest entertainers on a trip a few years ago when we stayed at Port Orleans Riverside. Wednesdays through Saturdays at the River Roost Lounge (kid friendly!) YeHaa Bob puts on one of the most entertaining, crowd pleasing and involving shows on Disney World Property! A fixture since 1997, you will laugh a long with Bob for a show you won’t soon forget! This is certainly a diehard Disney lover’s right of passage!
1. Sign up for a tour!
Have you ever waited to ride on a segway through the beautiful trails of Ft. Wilderness Resort? How about diving in the tanks in The Living Seas at Epcot? Want to feel like you own the place with The Keys to the Kingdom tour at Magic Kingdom? Or, maybe the Wild Africa trek will get your heart pumping as you cross suspension bridges over crocodiles at Animal Kingdom? A tour is a MUST DO at Disney World! Disney is known for their superior service and the tours have been perfected to make your day at Disney more magical than you could have ever imagined! You can sign up for half day or full day tours and often, pass holders and DVC members are extended discounts. Check the official Disney website for times, dates and prices.