The words “quiet” and “Disney” do not seem to go together very well. Disney is loud. It sometimes seems like there’s a live performance around every corner, with the speakers turned up and the lights flashing. The truth of the matter is that a Walt Disney World vacation is exhausting. Taking a breather is an important part of staying sane while you are there. That is what this list is for. Some of the places here offer seats so that you can rest. Others might keep you on your feet but you can still slow your pace down a bit.
The shows at Walt Disney World are a great place to sit down and sometimes get an air conditioned break, but they are still often loud. That is why the shows aren’t on this list. I’ve also stayed away from the resorts. Sometimes relaxing by the pool can be exactly what you need, but it takes time to get there. Another great place to take a breather is in the lobby of any of the Disney resort hotels. You can sit down for a little while and enjoy the air conditioning, even if you’re not staying at that hotel. The reason they aren’t on this list is because of the time involved. This list is intended to give you an immediate break while at one of the four parks. Restaurants are also not included on this list because it’s hit or miss on how quiet they will be.
Remember that the best way to enjoy a day at any of the Walt Disney World theme parks is to pace yourself. The purpose of this list is to help you do just that. If you slow down your speed for a little while you’ll soon have the energy to pick it back up and enjoy your day even more.
9. Area Approaching DINOSAUR
Dinoland U.S.A., Disney’s Animal Kingdom
There is nothing quiet or relaxing about DINOSAUR. It is a loud, jerky ride that causes many people to scream. The area around it is a whole different story. There are dinosaur statues to look at and there is plenty of room. You can sit on a bench and if you’re lucky you might even find some shade. It’s a great place to people watch while they’re rushing to get in line for the ride. Pull the stroller over and let your little one take a nap while you take a break yourself.
8. The American Adventure Fountain
The American Adventure Pavilion, Epcot
World Showcase is full of great places to relax and recharge. It is especially nice when the area first opens because it won’t yet be too crowded. Sit down for a few minutes by the fountain in the front of the American Adventure’s colonial-style building. If it’s hot, go inside for a little while and explore the American Heritage Gallery. Because the pavilion is located near the middle of World Showcase you’ll want to relax for a little while by the time that you get there.
7. Tom Sawyer Island
Frontierland, Magic Kingdom
Since the Magic Kingdom is usually the most crowded of the four parks it is difficult to get away from the noise. It is also the park where people want to do it all. What’s nice about Tom Sawyer Island is that guests who are in a hurry often decide that it will take too long so they walk by. Grab one of the rocking chairs and “sit a spell”. You will have a great view of the area and you will be able to enjoy life at a slower pace, at least for a few minutes.
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6. Fountain of Nations
Future World, Epcot
Behind Spaceship Earth is an incredible place to take a breather. The Fountain of Nations is beautiful. Every 15 minutes the fountain “performs” to music. If you’re up close on a windy day you might get wet! There are plenty of benches in the area so take a seat and watch the outdoor show for a cycle or two. The cool mist will feel nice on a hot day and you will marvel at how perfectly the dancing water matches the music.
5. Animal Trails
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
One of the many nice things about the animal trails and treks at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is that you can take them at your own pace. There is plenty of shade and there are places to sit down along the way. Take your time and enjoy them. You’ll have a whole new appreciation for the animals and you’ll also be more relaxed when you’re done. Make sure you have your camera ready as you explore. You’ll end up with one of a kind pictures.
4. Walt Disney Presents
Animation Courtyard, Hollywood Studios
This classic attraction has recently undergone some changes! Walt Disney Presents continues to offer guests a chance to view the history of Walt, but now has the addition of a space for guests to preview what’s on the horizon. Models such as Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway attraction are available to preview. We’ve always loved this informative collection of memorabilia, designs, and historical models about Walt. Now we get to experience the past, present, and future of Walt Disney! It’s rarely crowded and provides a great way to cool off as it is totally air-conditioned.
3. Canadian Gardens
Canada Pavilion, Epcot
The Canadian Rockies, a 30 foot waterfall, and beautifully sculpted gardens; this area begs you to take a breather! You’ll want to take your time to get a feel for it all. You might end up spending more time there than you had planned, the gardens are that incredible. One word of warning, if you’re looking to relax you might want to skip the O Canada! show. The Circle-Vision 360 film can cause dizziness, even to people who aren’t usually prone to motion sickness.
2. Plaza Rose Garden
End of Main Street, U.S.A., Magic Kingdom
You might think that there’s nothing peaceful available anywhere near the Magic Kingdom’s entrance, but you’d be wrong. The Plaza Rose Garden is located a little to the right of Cinderella Castle, towards the entrance to Tomorrowland. The garden is award winning and it is a beautiful spot. You can literally stop and smell the roses here. There are a few benches so you can sit down for a little while. In the distance you’ll be able to hear the music that is played on Main Street, U.S.A. Many people hurry by in their rush to get to Space Mountain and they never even notice this gorgeous spot. If you’re trying to relax you’ll want to avoid the garden near the time for a parade of the nightly fireworks, but it’s usually fairly quiet at other times of the day.
1. Quiet Rides
All Four Theme Parks
The problem with looking for a quiet spot on a Disney vacation is that you might feel like you are wasting time. There is an easy solution to that, ride a quiet ride! You can sit down for a little while and still be doing “something Disney” at the same time. At the Magic Kingdom you could ride the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover or Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress, the lines are usually short for either one. You could also Hop on the Walt Disney World Railroad (currently under refurbishment) and take a spin around the park. At Epcot, Spaceship Earth and The Seas With Nemo & Friends are both great family rides that also give you a break. If you’re headed to Disney’s Hollywood Studios try Voyage of the Little Mermaid for a relaxing, air-conditioned break. Wildlife Express Train (currently under refurbishment) at Disney’s Animal Kingdom will also give you the opportunity to get off of your feet for a few minutes. These aren’t the only quiet rides, explore the parks for yourself and you just might find a new favorite.