Recently I experienced Disney World for the first time without my family in tow. And I am converted! This is probably one of my favorite ways to see Disney World. If it’s in your budget I recommend doing Disney as an adult and here are my reasons.
You won’t be waiting in as many lines
Seriously, you don’t have to do every ride. You can completely skip Dumbo, Winne the Pooh or It’s a Small World. Personally I skip the 4D shows (unless I need a break from the heat). When you come with the family or the kids, those adult desires to do things will always take a back seat. But when you can skip a ton of rides you have never wanted to do anyway, the line waiting can be far more strategic. Which brings me to the next reason it’s wonderful to visit the Magic Kingdom as an adult without children.
You can arrive early…or not
My friend and I arrived at Animal Kingdom early and rode Flights of Passage immediately so we wouldn’t have as long a wait. And that was great. Dragging kids out early can be hard. But as a grown up you can do this….or not. We didn’t even go to Epcot one day until late, because we didn’t have to be there at a specific time, there was no ride little Davey will cry all day if he doesn’t get on or some must-see character greeting we needed to be at. And that’s the next thing
You don’t even have to do a character greeting when you go as an adult…unless you want to. But seriously Anna and Elsa aren’t real and you know it. So it’s unlikely you want to wait in that line. Thankfully as a grown up at the Disney World you can just walk right on by. Best part absolutely no one says, “Why can’t we see Elsa?”
You discover rides you actually like and don’t
Perhaps it’s my age, but honestly I realized that I actually like things like, “The People Mover”, “Hall of Presidents” and just gazing as sections of the park with its unique designs. When you are herding a child or ensuring their safety these things get completely missed. I knew I liked Space Mountain, but those lesser known rides got lost in my memory or bathroom emergencies and gratitude we were inside and out of heat (kids can be so cranky when they get warm, moms too). When you go as an adult take a moment to say, “Do I actually enjoy this ride?” Turns out that I am about to commit blasphemy and say, “I never need to ride Frozen again” It just didn’t float my boat (you can groan at the pun now). Honestly, I enjoyed Maelstrom more. The tech is cool and it’s kinda fun to break into song of “Let it Go” while in a boat with 10 strangers, but I don’t think I would waste a FastPass+ on it again –unless I was with my family and they wanted to go.
Dining is super simple and just a bit better
We all know that dining out is hard with kids on the best of days. But theme park dining can be especially difficult. And the whole advanced reservations system at Disney World can make it even harder. Well “party of 2” can get way better results at the last minute. Our party was able to get in for a seating at Be Our Guest the day before we went. Unheard of right? Well like I said dining is sooooo much easier when you go as an adult. Also there are so many grown up dining options from Victoria and Albert’s, which practically has a Michelin Star, to the varying restaurant (and bar) choices at Disney Springs, the foodie in any adult will be satisfied.
I hope you are noticing a theme. Going to Disney World on an adult’s only vacation is just plain less stressful. There are no expectations to manage in unreasonable children. And you can just spend your time discovering at your own pace. You get to do what you want and avoid all the parts you don’t want.
The Hotels are actually for Grown-ups
With the exception of the value resorts, the on-property hotels are really designed with grown ups in mind. I mean our hotel (The Contemporary) actually had a jog path marked. There was a conference center too. Most of the hotels have an in-house restaurant. And best of all they have lots of “sit here and enjoy the view” spots. You can finally enjoy those features. I didn’t take a jog, but I sure admired the 70 year old I saw out there taking a run. Kudos to him. I wanna be that guy when I grow up.
You can change parks
The thought of taking my family to another park in the same day just left me wanting to weep. All the walking to get out of the park (kid legs are small), monorail or bus time and then getting in another park. The kids would never make it. Well grown ups can do it and don’t even care. After we hit Flights of Passage early in the morning we left Animal Kingdom (remember we don’t have to do things we don’t want to –bye bye pretty much everything in AK). We headed over to Magic Kingdom. The transition was simple. And I finally feel like I got my monies worth on that “park hopper feature”.
You can skip the fireworks…or not.
I had never been on 7 Dwarfs Mine Train and we couldn’t get FastPasses. So being a grown up party that advice about ride it during the fireworks was advice we took. And the wait was shortest it was all day. See you can be strategic with your line waiting (see reason #1). And while I like the fireworks shows, I am not a huge fan of stake a place for and hour to watch the show uncomfortably from the Main Street Roundabout. It kinda makes my neck hurt thinking about it. So skipping and doing what you want was perfect.
You can book guided tours and special events
I realize you can book these with your kids, but there are a few with age restrictions of 16+ like Disney Holiday Magic D-Lights, Disney’s yuletide Fantasy and Backstage Magic, Keys to the Kingdom and The unDISCOVERed Future World. These are pricey, but for the most part not available to groups with kids. So another advantage, you will be with all grown ups. Pretty unique bucket list item.
Driving is a non-issue
Perhaps it’s because I have teens that recently got a license, or that I spent many years shuttling children. But I love that I DON’T have to get behind the wheel of a car. All the buses,monarail and now the MinnieVan and uber make navigating painless. And for the entire stay I was free of traffic frustration. It was pure heaven!
So you may not have Disney World on your grown up travel bucket list, but you might want to consider it. They really make it great for adults as well as children. And they are getting more and more features for adult-only parties or girls-trip groups. Disney World isn’t so bad
Read more about how to enjoy Disney World as an adult or with your adult children