Everyone should get to go to Disney World at least once in their lifetime. That is one of my fundamental beliefs. Just because you're 13+, that doesn't mean you've outgrown the most magical place on earth. If done correctly, a trip to Disney World can be amazing at any age. I must admit, some of my friends have gone with their kids and HATED it. It's all in the planning, people. The choices you make can make Disney a dream-like trip or a burning nightmare. I've been enough times to know each of those options well. Whether you have kids or not, you can have a magical time at Disney, but only if you follow these tips!
Don't Go In The Summer
Anyone who hated their Disney World trip went during the months of May-August, I promise. That's how it always is. Why? Because Disney World isn't as fun during the summer. It's Florida, so it's blazing hot in the shade. In the sunshine, you might as well be standing on the surface of the sun. On top of that, every Floridian child is out of school, which means that every park will be packed with people. It's awful. However, Florida in early November is amazing. In early November, school is in session pretty much all over the planet. If you don't have kids, November is the ideal time to visit.
Magic Kingdom Is SO Overrated
Magic Kingdom is where all the families go. They want the kiddies to meet Cinderella and ride Splash Mountain. Unfortunately, that also means that Magic Kingdom has the highest concentration of tantrums. However, the other 3 parks are great. Couples MUST go to Epcot. Around the world showcase you'll find world class dining from world famous chefs (especially in France). Plus, it's mostly just couples and old people enjoying the educational pavilions on leisurely strolls. Outside of the parks is Disney Springs, which is basically just a fancy shopping center. It can be crowded (considering it's free admission) but it's mostly local twenty and thirty-somethings shopping. The gist of all this? Stay away from Magic Kingdom if you can. Spend a morning doing whatever rides you HAVE to and in that time you'll completely get it.
Disney Hotels: Pricey But Worth It
It can be cheaper to stay outside of Disney, and my family's done that many times. If you're going with kids, this can be a great option. If the youngest person with you is 13+ however, it's worth it to spring for the Disney hotels. They're themed in very cool ways and they offer complimentary transportation. Best of all, if you book during a certain time of year (look at me inadvertently advertising for Disney!), you get the dining plan, which basically means your food is payed for. It's like an all-inclusive resort, except it's in Florida. Is that good or bad? I think that's kind of up to you.
If You Want Fireworks, Go To Epcot
They are spectacular. The nightly fireworks and pyrotechnics show is breathtaking. It's all about unity and world peace. I've seen a lot of fireworks, and these really are amazing. Disney does no less than 120% on everything they create. Plus, they have lot's of great snack options around the lake where the show takes place. Fireworks and french pastries, does that not sound amazing right now?
You Don't Have To Go To The Parks Every Day
There are dozens of resorts and activity spots all over Disney World. Shop at Disney Springs, golf on the world class courses, watch African animals roam at the Animal Kingdom Lodge or just relax at your resort's pool. It's not just theme parks, you guys. There's a 'World' of possibilities! (Yes, that was a pun, and I obviously don't regret it as much as I should).
After 2, Don't Do Rides
Okay, I admit, there are some classic rides that you've just got to go on. However, around 9am, the lines for those rides start to fill up. After around 2pm those lines go from a '30 minute wait' long to 'it can't seriously be an hour and a half?!' long. No ride is worth that. There are shows and experiences all over the place in Disney. Most of them are very fun, and they're indoors in Disney's very strong air-conditioning.
I admit, the original concept of Disney World was solely aimed at kids, but in today's world that just doesn't work. That's why Disney has added and is still adding experiences for adults. Some of the parks even feature exclusively adult areas, such as the new 'Club Villain'. Disney knows that everybody has a Disney side, even adults. Taking advantage of Disney's more sophisticated offerings will most assuredly bring more childish joy to your life, as long as you don't go in the summer.