View Full Version : So What's so great about WDW?

06-23-2007, 05:33 PM
I've convinced my dh we need to at "least" go for a day or so next time we visit my retired parents in St. Augustine. Our girls are 6 & 4, and we're looking at early August for the trip.

My problem: I haven't been since 1980 - I was in highschool and it was just 1 day. So while we're going "for the girls" I'm more interested than DH, yet I'm still looking at WDW as an "amusement park" and I know DH thinks of it as a "kiddy place". We need to book plane tickets asap (yesterday?) but I'm not sure for how long since we're splitting time between my parents and WDW and I've got NO IDEA how long we should plan for WDW.

I'm flying blind... I'd love to get a summary of what makes WDW interesting for an adult (I see post saying it isn't just an amusement park) -- why is it such an attraction? And for total newbies with a 2 young girls, how long should we plan to stay? DH thinks 2 days is more than enough... is he right?

06-23-2007, 05:48 PM
If you are just planning on doing magic kingdom, you can probably do that in 2 days.

What an 'adult' gets out of it, will depend greatly from what they ALLOW themselves to get out of it. I know from reading trip reports from couples, talking to my brother and sis in law who have gone a few times by themselves, I know 'adults' can have a blast!! The secret is being able to let go and 'be 10 years old' again :). This is all just my opinion from reading and talking to other folks. If you've read any of this board much I'm sure you know how folks plan for this months in advance.

Do your girls like the whole princess thing? IMO, if you can still get ressies for it, and you can get there in the AM, I would consider trying to get Cinderella's Royal Table for breakfast for your daughters. Being as you wont be able to spend many days there, if you could pull that off, if they like them, I think that would be a GREAT thing for them.


Waiting to see what seasoned vets suggest to you.. :surfweb:

06-23-2007, 05:55 PM
I would go for minimum of 4 days-that would allow you a day in each park. Which isn't time enough-but would give you a good taste of WDW. What adults get out of it-is time just to have fun with their families. Don't bring your problems or your worries to the park with you-leave them at home!! Be crazy-wear a silly hat and ride in giant teacups with your girls!!!

06-23-2007, 06:02 PM
I'll share our experience. We (Me DH, DD 16, DS 14, and DD 9) went for the first time in 2004...none of us had ever been. We went basically because we figured it's something we could do as a family before our oldest graduated from high school, and that everybody has to go to Disneyworld once. Well, DH and I were hooked the very moment we stepped on property! The kids enjoyed it, but I fell in love with the place. We only had three park days, 1 at Epcot, 1 at Magic Kingdom, and we split one between the Studios and Animal Kingdom. We also did one day at Blizzard Beach. It was a great vacation that we all enjoyed, but it ws SO not enough!!

We're going back this year (finally!) this time just Me, DH and DD now 12, and we're planning 6 1/2 park days. I can't explain the magic of it, but there is plenty to do for all. We were struck, as adults, by the extreme attention to detail, the quality of the shows and perfomers, and the amazing friendliness and customer service of all the castmembers. My only regret was that we hadn't gone when our kids were younger...it was a true joy to see all the little children light up at every little thing!! Bottom line, it can't be compared to any other "amusement park" experience. Walt Disney World stands alone.

I suggest you order the FREE planning DVD from the Disney website. It will help you get a feel for the place and all the options. No matter how long you stay, you're likely to have a great time!

06-24-2007, 12:50 AM
I go to WDW about every two years with my girlfriends (four of us) and no kids. We keep going back because we love it! We go during the Food and Wine Festival and also make sure to go to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (which is a "hard ticket" event that costs around $40 pp -- that's above and beyond the regular ticket cost!). Our last trip was seven days, and we stretched it to eight on our upcoming trip because it just wasn't enough. As you can probably tell, we're WDW fanatics!

I'm not sure I can put into words why we enjoy it so much. It gives us a chance to be kids again - just walking down Main Street in Magic Kingdom makes us so happy! Even though we're a group of adults, we do the rides, shows, a character breakfast (Pooh and Tigger!), the list goes on and on. There's so much to do, truly, a week doesn't seem like enough. We usually do at least one day in MK, two full days in Epcot, one day at MGM, one day at AK, and a few evenings at Pleasure Island. This year, we're adding at least part of a day in one of the water parks, a couple of hours in a "water mouse" boat, and the "Keys to the Kingdom" tour. It's not just an amusement park, it's an adventure!

(BTW, one of my fellow travelers went to Universal Orlando earlier this year and was so disappointed. She said it just wasn't as clean, the people working there weren't as pleasant . . . it "just wasn't Disney.")

So, my advice is, try to schedule at least three or four days to get a really good flavor of what WDW is all about. Do lots of research -- read through lots of posts this chat board, go to allearsnet.com, buy the Unofficial Guide. You'll get a lot more out of it if you do some pre-planning. Good luck and have fun!

pepe of ohio
06-24-2007, 08:22 AM
Really hard to explain or put into words but we began our Disney journeys in 1977, first trip and we're now, this September enjoying our 39th trip. We fell for Disney when there were only one park and 2 resorts. Our children grew up taking Disney vacations, daughter did the college program a few years ago and even moved to Florida and worked for the mouse for a year.

Children are married and gone now but wife and I still enjoy the relaxing atmosphere and all inclusive airs of staying on property. Daughter and SIL still meet us there sometimes but we still plan at least one trip a year. We have always stayed deluxe and just the look and feel of the MK resorts, washes away the stresses of real life, whether we go to the parks or just hang at the resort all day, we're in heaven. CM's are there to wait on your every wish and command, there are so many things to see and do, places to eat and drink really just too much that it makes your head spin with the choices. Getting around to all thse things couldn't be easier either, transportation on the mouse, boat, bus, monorail, train, just makes things too easy.

Nowhere else that we've been to could compare to WDW, the size of the property, no commercialization, you enter property teeming with trees and areas open up to resorts and parks, really giving nature the lead over the buck. Water canals, mowed grass areas, wildlife strolling everywhere, just like being isolated but with 150,000 people plus CM's you hardly notice but you feel like you're all alone. We never venture off property, for what, its all right here in our little world, no car needed.

Going back after doing that, you bet, as long as the mind and body are will, wife and I look forward every trip and countdown the days and read all the info, Its the most relaxing, can be young again place on earth, for us.

06-24-2007, 10:14 AM
Disney World cannot be understood until you see and feel the magic! It isn't remotely like Six Flags or other "amusement parks." There are 4 distinctly different parks, lots of rides that are amazing--not just get on -- get off -- ok that's finished -- next. Each ride is an experience --totally themed and putting you "inside" what the ride is all about.

The shows are many and varied and very well done. The grounds are fabulous. The time and effort and attention to the smallest detail is awe inspiring. Until you've been there and opened yourself up to the magic, you'll never know. Just having someone tell you about it doesn't work.

There are many different dining experiences--many different types of cuisine and snacks.

Please do your research (this is a good place to start!) If you can, plan on at least staying 5 nights and seeing each of the parks. When it comes to WDW--more is better!

06-24-2007, 12:14 PM
I went for the first time with my children at the age of 40 in 2004 and it was an incredible experience for us all. I got a very unexpected emotional response and I literally did feel like a young child again. Also, seeing it relected in the eyes of my children was one of the happiest experiences I've ever had. I was actually reduced to tears a couple of times. Any place that can do that to a tired, single mother with disabled kids, a student and a little jaded is truly a magical place.

06-24-2007, 02:14 PM
I totally agree with Piper in every way. There is no other amusement park that compares to Walt Disney World. In fact my husband and I were just dicussing this last night. Universal, Six Flags, etc . . . no comparison. Disney is a FEELING, an experience in every way. It's purely magic. Everything is clean and beautiful, castmembers(workers) are friendly and helpful, there is painstaking detail to buildings, rides, character involvement, shows . . . It's truly the only place on earth (besides Disneyland) for me that the outside world literally fades away and all that's left is happiness, fun, and magic. I mean the fireworks alone are a reason to visit WDW! Waiting to get autographs and take picrures with characters involves more excitement from kids (and adults) than I have ever seen anywhere else. It is hard to explain to someone just how truly amazing WDW is . . . you just need to GO!!!

06-24-2007, 02:46 PM
We went for the first time in '05. I went when I was about 12 for one day(I don't really remember it) Our girls were 10,7,5 & 2 at the time. I was not expecting to have greatest time. It was amazing seeing our girls have such a great time. To see them see it all was really awesome! BUT, more than anything DH had a blast. He kept talking about it and saying how much he wanted to go back. We are going back this Sept!!!

06-24-2007, 02:50 PM
WDW to us is somewhere we can go and enjoy the rides with our kids! It is not about putting them on a ride and standing on the side waving. What Walt Disney envisioned when he built Disneyland! We do it all with them. Before our trip DS4, really would not do rides at any other amusement park but he did love the characters so we took our chances. Well he rode 95% of what he was tall enough for, why, bc we could all do it together!

DS9 did love the thrill rides too so there was something for everyone.

Also watching your kids light up whent hey see their favorite character is just awesome.

Give each park at least a day and plan it well!

More people come back from WDW disappointed bc they think it is just another amusement park, dont fall into that trap! Learn about Fastpasses and making meal reservations (ADRs). It can be the most wonderful funfilled trip, if you plan it well!

06-24-2007, 06:03 PM
We have known alot of people to go to Disney and it seems to me the ones who just go for a day or two to say yeah weve been to Disney dont get it. They are too rushed to slow down and fell the magic! You need at least 4 days and just go slow and enjoy and Im sure you will wish you started this tradition years ago! Have a magical trip!:goodvibes Nettii

06-27-2007, 11:09 AM
I've convinced my dh we need to at "least" go for a day or so next time we visit my retired parents in St. Augustine. Our girls are 6 & 4, and we're looking at early August for the trip.

My problem: I haven't been since 1980 - I was in highschool and it was just 1 day. So while we're going "for the girls" I'm more interested than DH, yet I'm still looking at WDW as an "amusement park" and I know DH thinks of it as a "kiddy place". We need to book plane tickets asap (yesterday?) but I'm not sure for how long since we're splitting time between my parents and WDW and I've got NO IDEA how long we should plan for WDW.

I'm flying blind... I'd love to get a summary of what makes WDW interesting for an adult (I see post saying it isn't just an amusement park) -- why is it such an attraction? And for total newbies with a 2 young girls, how long should we plan to stay? DH thinks 2 days is more than enough... is he right?
It is so hard to explain our love for disney but so easy to have a love for disney. We (dh and I) went the first time when we were 42 years old and we have been back when were 48, 49, and 50 years old. We go every year now and we love it. It is magical and memorable. It is a clean, friendly place to visit where all needs are met or at least attempted to be met. Honestly, back when we were 42 years old we thought it was once in a lifetime trip just to check it out. We never dreamed we would want to to back over and over again. Every time you go you see new and different things but the service is always great. My dh thinks I am addicted to disney (so???) but the last time we went after we got to our room he made the comment that we were "home".
Be very careful----every time you go you fall more in love with the magic of disney!!! enjoy

06-27-2007, 11:28 AM
I'd just say why not WDW!!! Just go, have fun and order all the info from WDW that you can; and plan, enjoy and have a magical time!:wizard:

06-27-2007, 12:53 PM
We took our girls for the first time when they had JUST turned 5 and 7 - and they loved it SO much! They loved meeting the characters and getting autographs, they loved the rides - Splash Mountain and the Tea Cups were their favorites, the loved the fireworks and the parades, they loved the shows, and the activites. They still have the masks they made at the Epcot funstations in each country in their rooms. They loved watching the acrobats in China and the candy artist in Japan.

We're going back in October and we can't wait! They will be 9 and 11 by then (I *really* need to update my siggy pic, but I love it so much!) and they can't wait! (me either!!!)

BTW, if you can't get Cinderella's Breakfast, the princess meal in Epcot is very nice as well :)

The 4D movies in MK and MGM are not to be missed!

Don't forget to ask to ride in the "nose" of the monorail! It's a great view and the kids get "co-pilot's licenses"






07-02-2007, 06:35 AM
My DS's 12 & 8 aren't really big thrill seekers when it comes to rides. At other theme parks there isn't that much for us to do, but at Disney it is a different story. They aren't just rides they are attractions that aren't to scary. Sort of like a show with more. For example my favorite is Mickey's Philharmagic...it is a 3D movie with bits from several disney movies ,Lion King, Aladdin, Little Mermaid etc but with a twist. You swear that you could reach out and touch the jewels floating in Ariel's Grotto, you can smell the food from beauty and the beast. It is amazing. They do have big rollercoaster type rides too but if you don't like those there is so much more to do. I think that is what makes it better than an amusement park. We spend 2-3 days in MK, 1 in MGM and 1 in AK. We went to epcot last year and there was too much walking and not enough for my kids to do. Others love epcot. Maybe when my kids are older and can appreciate the culture avail there we'll go back.

Hope this helps. After our first trip I said to my DH on the plane that we have to come back in 2 years. I don't care if we have to remortgage the house.:lmao: Best family vacation ever!!!!

07-02-2007, 11:23 AM
We just got back from Orlando with our 4 year old DD. We went to the Magic Kingdom one day. That was fine for us. We just don't have the money to do a multiple day visit. We also went to Universal. My DD actually enjoyed universal more. There were more water related things for her to do there. And, I disagree with a pp about the magic being only at Disney. We thought the theming and magic was more evident at both the Universal parks. Each to his own I guess.:confused3

07-02-2007, 12:47 PM
This is great as my DH keeps asking me the same question. I say as a mom I got hooked because I didn't have to cook or worry about where we would eat or have to drive anyone anywhere. Once my kids were teenagers I was also able to let then go where they wanted (as long as they checked in frequently) and they could also eat where they wanted.Having park tickets and dining on one card was a great idea. I also think that it is a place where you can forget about the outside world for awhile and regroup yourself. I can have fun with my children and I can also do things without the kids

07-02-2007, 03:01 PM
I have been to both WDW and Universal. I have enjoyed them both, but Disney is my favorite. The attention to detail is what sets them apart. If you only have one or two days you probably won’t be able to make the distinction.

There are plenty of things to do and see. After the two day mark you start to feel like you have done it all at Universal. That is where Disney takes over. Sure there are the big ticket items like thrill rides and shows, but it is the little things that make the experience almost like new every time. The massive scope of Disney is what does it for me.

07-03-2007, 10:51 AM
Hi! To convince a skeptic to try it for the first time, you can point out the level of customer service (extremely high, even at the budget resorts or counter service places). Also, the full stories that go with each attraction, the characters staying in character (not so at other parks), and the magic.....it is fun to see the kids experience the magic, but adults will find that they can't help but feel it too..........Also, Epcot has a lot for adults, science and world cultures, fine food and wine. Good luck and have a great time! I agree with previous posters, 4 days minimum.....

07-03-2007, 11:49 AM
I went for the first time when I was in my 20's and I cried taking the boat in from the TTC (I am a crier:sad:) I went for the second time last year with family, there were a couple of little ones with us, and the experience was still just as amazing. I think everytime you go, you see something new, or you discover something that you didn't notice the last time you were there. I am going again, just my mom and me, in September, and we talk about making Disney a yearly thing for the entire family. It is something we all love, that we can all do together, either as adults or with the kids. You really feel the magic when you are there and the feeling is indescribible, it is like living in your imagination!!!!!

Cindy & Mickey
07-03-2007, 03:06 PM
My favorite place in the world is WDW. More than anywhere else, I can leave my worries aside for a while, enjoy the rides and experiences (and food), and at the end of the day I am misty-eyed, happy, and completely worn out.

When my DH and I got engaged in 1998, I warned him that a requirement was a WDW trip every year on average. As a 40-something adult, he had never been, but said no problem! His first trip was in 1999. He was expecting a Six Flags experience, only bigger. He soon discovered that WDW is unique, nothing quite like it. He's now hooked just like me, and starts asking when is our next trip, can we dine at so-and-so, etc.

Sure it is expensive, exhausting, and overwhelming. But the good definitely outweighs the bad!

I think the number one mistake new visitors make is underestimating the scope of the parks. You can't do/see it all in one day (or two or three). Even with 4 or 5 days to go, you won't see it all. Also, getting to the parks EARLY can really make the difference.

Have a great time, and see if you can't talk DH into a couple of nights staying AT a Disney Resort, instead of just driving down from St. Augustine.

07-03-2007, 08:04 PM
I only took my first trip last summer and loved it! Your trip in 1980 is a long time ago and it has changed a lot since then!

I certainly hope you have decided to stay there for more than one day because with four main parks and two water parks plus Downtown Disney, you would miss a lot!

There are numerous attractions for both adults and kids at each park and it is far from being just a regular amusement park! Doing at least one day at MK, Epcot and MGM, then at least one morning at AK would be a great start IMHO.

You don't have much time but if you plan to go for 3-4 days it might be a good idea to get some sort of touring plan (***************** or at TourGuideMike.com). That will allow you to get the most out of your visit without too much waiting in lines!

In any case, good luck! :thumbsup2

07-03-2007, 08:30 PM
WDW is not an amusement park. It's a magical place full of wonderful memories waiting to happen. So much has changed since you've been. There's a reason why there are so many discussion boards and websites devoted to Disney Theme parks and tips on vacationing there. You can't see it in one day. It takes lots o' days. Several years ago, Dh and our girls went for the first time as a family. Dh had never been. It wasn't long and he was as much a fanatic as I am. My girls(we now have 3) are crazy about WDW. My almost 4 yo knows as much trivia as many adults.

WDW is a place that we go to to get away from reality. It isn't a Six Flags, or a Busch Gardens. Universal can't even come close(great rides over there, but the atmosphere...well...you can just FEEL the difference).

I wish I could put it into words. Disney World is just...DIFFERENT. You can feel it the minute you drive on property. Magic is in the air. You can almost see the pixie dust. One day you're a princess, the next a pirate. Not only does it feed a child's imagination, but it feeds the imagination in every one of us. There are tons of themed resorts, which are magical all on their own. Cast Members are pixie dust spreaders and makers of the magic. It's up to us to let it all in.

DH and I can't wait until we can have our own little WDW vacation. In the future we plan to renew our vows there.

I totally agree with PP who said you have to let it happen. It's there, and it's easy to be a part of it all. It's almost hard NOT to let it take you over.

I'm a sappy one, I know...but Disney is my family's place to go. We are either at WDW, on our way to or from WDW or planning a trip to WDW. We enjoy other places also, but for us, Disney is the ultimate place to be.
I hope your family enjoys your trip! I do highly recommend hanging around these boards and/or buying guides of some sort to do research, research, research. Going without knowing what you're doing is much more overwhelming than any information you may have to soak up beforehand!:goodvibes

07-04-2007, 09:30 PM
I believe the question to ask is why anyone would think WDW is an amusement park. WDW is an experience. Consider what is available. You have MK, MGM, AK, Epcot, DTD as well as the other Disney attractions. The parks do have rides and attractions, but those that are frequent visitors will probably say that they do not return for just the rides. I've have done many, Universal, Bush Gardens, Six Flags, Sea World. We have loved the others, but WDW is where we always want to return. Our trips (3-4 per year) are usually no less than 3 days, but at least one trip a year of 6-7 days.