Toting a four-year-old and a one-and-a-half-year-old, our first journey to Disney World with our grandchildren was a hoot. Our kids visited Disney World for the primary time once they had been round 4. We knew what a joyful expertise it was for us and our youngsters that we needed to take our oldest granddaughter and began planning for her fourth birthday.

A Disney World journey for youthful youngsters may be quite a lot of work, but additionally wonderful enjoyable. Watching the wide-eyed amazement as beloved characters come to life proper earlier than their eyes is a second to not be missed. Your grandchildren’s first Disney World trip shall be crammed with princess clothes, tiaras, magic bubble wands, and Buzz Lightyear costumes.

For those who plan forward, be ready for plans to alter, and benefit from the loopy Disney World environment, you should have a beautiful time —  and your grandbabies will too.

The Disney World Parks

Every park has its challenges and rewards. To keep away from attempting to cram all of the Disney enjoyable into one exhausting day, select a multi-day, Park Hopper Pass possibility. Beneath the present Disney rules, Park Hopper hours begin at 2 p.m.

Viewing rhinos at Kilimanjaro Safaris at Disney Magic Kingdom.

Viewing rhinos at Kilimanjaro Safaris

Picture credit score: Sandi Barrett

1. Animal Kingdom

I feel Animal Kingdom is the most effective park for the primary day to ease into the go to. The parks may be fully overwhelming for younger youngsters and exhausting for us grandparents. There are good experience choices relying on the age of your grandkids.

The Kilimanjaro Safari opens at 8 a.m. which is ideal in case you are an early riser and staying on Disney property. The youngsters love watching all of the unique animals. They enchant even very babies.

One other child-friendly experience in Animal Kingdom is the Wildlife Express Train. The quick practice experience, which for the little ones is an journey, drops you off at a winding path by way of the “jungle.” In the end, you land at a kid-friendly petting zoo and exhibit.

2. Magic Kingdom Should-Do Rides

My greatest recommendation for the Magic Kingdom is to plan your must-do rides. There are such a lot of rides to select from, however you need to work out that are the must-dos for you — whether or not it’s “it’s a small world”, Mad Tea Get together, Dumbo, or one thing else. If you take your grandkids to Disney World they anticipate a magical time and that is the park to deliver on the magic.

Intersperse wild, tummy jostling rides just like the Mad Tea Get together —  I can solely take a lot spinning —  with rides the place you sit. The PeopleMover, “it’s a small world”, and the Market Carousel are calming choices.

Watching the fireworks show over Cinderella’s Citadel is a time-honored custom, and everybody desires an ideal view. Magic Kingdom’s Principal Avenue can turn into extraordinarily crowded throughout the festivities. If you’d like an excellent view, arrive early. Visitors begin lining up two hours forward of time and navigating a stroller by way of the crowds is difficult.

3. Epcot And The World Showcase

Epcot isn’t just for adults, it’s value spending a minimum of half a day right here with younger grandchildren. Frozen Ever After is a must-see for any younger Disney fan, and Soarin’ Around The World is one other great experience. When you find yourself prepared to take a seat, go to The Seas with Nemo and Friends; it’s cute and applicable for all ages.

4. Disney’s Hollywood Studios

I might skip Hollywood Studios in case your grandchildren are actually younger. There’s a lot to see and do on the different parks. When they’re of their tween years, they may love the wild rides right here.

Goofy, the author's grandchildren, and their father at Chef Mickey's.

The creator’s grandchildren with their father at Chef Mickey’s

Picture credit score: Rose Pacific

Disney Resort Should-Haves

A Disney Resort Resort is the best choice for a keep. Every themed lodge affords nice choices, however I like Disney’s Contemporary Resort. The monorail runs proper by way of the lodge, making it simple to get to the Magic Kingdom. Moreover, they host breakfast at Chef Mickey’s. Make certain to get a reservation at Chef Mickey’s beforehand or be a part of the walk-in waitlist the day of by checking if there’s eating availability on the My Disney Experience App. The primary aim with little ones is to maintain it simple and easy.

5. A Nice Pool

Mixing in a number of pool days is tremendous vital. Grandpa desires to go to the park day-after-day, however with little ones, it’s vital to have downtime. Nothing will get everybody prepared for a nap higher than a swim.

6. Keep Shut To The Park

For those who can’t keep within the park, let’s face it, the on-property inns are dear. Search for a lodge that’s near the park. The Springhill Suites by Marriott is near all of the motion for a family-friendly worth. For different choices, flick thru this list of inns which are collaborating in Disney’s Good Neighbor Resort program!

7. Kitchen

Groceries may be delivered proper to your apartment, lodge, or Airbnb. You don’t wish to waste time working across the grocery retailer. Plan a number of meals and wholesome snacks earlier than you go. Get them organized to reach when you find yourself unpacking and settling into your momentary residence.

Getting your infants’ favourite snacks equivalent to the precise yogurt, crackers, and fruit will assist preserve the children cozy and common —  an important consideration to maintain them joyful. Younger kids may be choosy eaters and having your individual meals will prevent cash.

The author's grandchild with a bubble wand at Walt Disney World.

The creator’s grandchild with a bubble wand at Walt Disney World

Picture credit score: Sandi Barrett

Additional Surprises

Disney parks are designed to course of a lot of friends. Be ready for lengthy traces and throngs of individuals by stashing a number of additional surprises in your magic bag of tips.

8. Enjoyable Toys

You possibly can order in style gadgets like the ever present bubble wands earlier than you go for lower than in-park costs.

9. Disney Wearables

Ordering Disney pajamas, character t-shirts, and Disney hats earlier than you go is a enjoyable strategy to unfold the magic with out breaking the financial institution. You should still wish to buy a small trinket or two on the journey for memento functions.

10. Genie+ Service

Improve the Disney magic by utilizing the Genie+ Service. You must arrange an account on the My Disney Experience App, however it would be best to do that anyway. The service prices $15 per particular person in your group. You possibly can have all members of your celebration on the account which makes reserving parks, rides, and extra a one-stop-shop.

As of June 2022, Disney has eradicated the pre-purchasing possibility for Genie+. Visitors can buy the service on the day of their park reservation.

11. Lightning Lanes

The Genie+ Service is one of the simplest ways to keep away from lengthy traces in your most desired rides. You possibly can enroll your whole group for a time window to entry the lightning lane for a selected experience. There are a number of restrictions; it’s relevant for sure rides, however many in style ones can be found for an upcharge. Relying on the park and your timing, you possibly can anticipate to improve two or three rides to lightning lane passes —  in case you arrive on the park early.

12. Order Meals

With the My Disney Expertise App, you possibly can order and pay for meals at counter service eating places all through the park utilizing the Cellular Order function. No want to face in line for a snack! You can be notified when your order is prepared for pickup.

13. Wait Instances, Character Meet And Greets, PhotoPass, And Extra

The My Disney Expertise App will show wait instances for rides, reveals, top necessities, character meet and greet instances and places, in addition to PhotoPass photographer places, and extra. It is a useful device that may make your expertise much less frantic.

Visiting a princess at Magic Kingdom Park.

Visiting a princess at Magic Kingdom Park

Picture credit score: Emily Barrett

Visiting Walt Disney World

14. Purchase A Park Hopper Cross

A Park Hopper Cross provides extra to the price of your ticket and provides flexibility to your go to. With Park Hopper tickets, you possibly can take pleasure in points of interest on the Magic Kingdom within the morning, journey by way of Pandora in Animal Kingdom throughout the afternoon, then end the evening watching Epcot’s new nighttime spectacular Harmonious.

15. Begin Early

Go early within the morning. It’s at all times crowded however purpose to be on the park when it opens. Head straight to the must-do experience of the day and revel in a shorter line, then meander from there.

If you’re staying on property or at a Disney Good Neighbor Resort, you may have the benefit of 30-minute early entry to the parks. This will make a giant distinction in wait time for probably the most sought-after rides.

16. Take A Noon Break

With a multi-day park hopper cross, you may have the choice to go away the park and enter a distinct one. Be aware that in case you have a day cross (with out park hopper entry) and reservation for a Walt Disney World theme park, you possibly can depart the park and re-enter later that very same day. Benefit from the noon hunch and head again to the lodge for lunch, a swim, and a nap —  not simply Grampy, however the youngsters too. After a refreshing break, you can be prepared to move again into the park.

17. Be A Versatile Planner

Lastly, be versatile. Pre-plan your days to find out which days shall be park days and which shall be pool days. That means, you should have a greater and extra environment friendly journey.

Comic story: One time when my ladies had been younger, it was our sixth day coming into the park. My youngest daughter, 5 on the time, had a meltdown within the parking zone. She threw herself to the bottom and screamed, “No extra Mickey —  no extra Mickey!” We had been lengthy overdue for a pool day.

A Excellent Walt Disney World Trip

It doesn’t exist. Don’t purpose for perfection, purpose for creating particular moments. Going with the circulate and having enjoyable is extra vital than getting on that final experience.

Visiting Walt Disney World along with your grandchildren is a magical trip. I can’t wait to deliver them once more when our grandson is sufficiently old to recollect the expertise and make priceless recollections.

Professional Tip: With the little ones, deliver mother and pop alongside. Give them an evening out, however deliver them to the park — little ones are exhausting and people teacups are traumatic for Gigi after the fourth go round!

For extra suggestions and tips to planning your subsequent magical Disney trip, click on right here:

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