404 Disney and disney-fication

Disney and disney-fication


It’s a fact that for many people in the world, when they hear the phrase “I’m going to travel with my kids” they immediately think Disney.

For good reason.

Disney sets the standard for theme parks, cruises, and tours.  It is not only obviously child friendly, it is also adult friendly.

It’s not pet friendly, though, sorry dog owners.

I made a conscious decision to never write directly about the Disney theme parks on this blog. As a former Orlando resident, I’ve probably been to the Disney World Resort parks over 80 times. My laid-back approach to visiting Disney would not interest many people. “Five EPCOT center lines that are better than the ride” — no one wants to read that post. 

I also don’t write about their cruises and tours because I haven’t done them – yet. As soon as my kids meet the minimum age requirements I’ll be signing us up and writing about it right here.

While many people are against Disney, against tours, and thus against Disney tours, I’m a fan. Disney tours aren’t just child-friendly, they are child-focused. Child-focused! How nice does that sound?

Until my kids are old enough to go on the Disney tours, though, I’m going to take a few tips from the entertainment masters.

Here are three things I try to do on every trip.

Find the hidden Mickeys. Everyone knows that Mickey heads are hidden throughout all of the parks. While we don’t need to be on the lookout for him while on vacation in Austria, we can still look for something. For those of us that are too lazy to come up with a destination-relevant item – no worries. Create a generic scavenger hunt list that can be used on multiple trips. (Come back for letter S and I’ll tell you all about it.)
Be an active participant. Going to museums, parks, and shows are all fun. However, I think the best experiences are those that get people involved instead of passively watching things happen to them.  An easy answer is visiting a Science Center, they always have hands-on displays. A better choice is to find the experiences unique to the destination. Perfect your gelato recipe in Italy, learn how to shoot arrows from bows in Scotland, practice calligraphy in China.
Upgrade the memories. At the end of every day Adventures by Disney guests receive a branded pin specific to something they did that day. It’s something to look forward to and speculate about before hand. It’s also a souvenir. Find a way to surprise your young ones with a recap keepsake from your day, every day of your vacation. Perhaps a collection of metal pins will work for you, too. Or just a simple postcard that the child can use to record their reactions from the day. It’s a small token with a huge impact.

My Southern Gypsy friend is gearing up for a year of travel and is also participating in this A to Z challenge. Go check out her blog!commander les corsets sexy pas cherAH111 16Gb


  1. I recently heard that Disney has a new cruise starting next year in Scandinavia. How cool would that be? But man, that is some serious $$$ and we aren’t Disney fanatics.

    • I think, especially with kids, it’s completely worth it. The only people who won’t like it are people that love gambling on ships because I think they replace the area normally set for gambling with kids playrooms.

  2. LOL, “Five EPCOT center lines that are better than the ride”- nice! I’d love to read that post!

    I worked at Disney from 16 to 17, so I’ve been there hundreds of times (though many were not fun, but outright horrible times there ;)).

    Last year I wrote a post on how to save time at Magic Kingdom, http://wanderlustmarriage.com/5-ways-to-save-time-at-disney/

    I used to sometimes go “backstage” at the Disney parks even after I worked there, because I knew I could- though I don’t write about this 🙂

    • You know, I think I would like that post – although, I think the lines are better at Animal Kingdom and IOA so I’d rather write those posts :). I didn’t realize you worked there. My ex-bf did and that’s why I went so frequently. I worked at IOA the summer they opened.

  3. Yep…we were one of those who took our kids to Disneyland…and it was great! The girls still love their memories of those trips many years ago! There seems to be so much more available now for kids to do to to be involved in a hands on way. I’m not sure how I’d cope with a Disney cruise though!

  4. North Americans are so Disney crazy – I can’t believe how many people visit year after year. And the number of Disney related pins on Pinterest – mind boggling. Although I do love the park and have been a couple times I don’t think we’ll be returning for awhile. Maybe when there is a little one in tow. Unfortunately I think that Disney is such a big deal in Canada and the US that we often miss out on other incredible travel opportunities by not thinking outside the box. Thanks for the realistic tips and the honest approach to talking about Disney, great post! 🙂

  5. I heard that Disney will house 2014 regular season games also. That would be great 🙂