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Old 11-17-2012, 11:47 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 5

Question Please help me plan our first itinerary with toddler!

Hi experienced WDWers

We will be going to WDW in the first week of October 2013 for a friends wedding and i have no idea where to start with our itinerary as we have never been to WDW or Orlando before (visiting from Australia). Im wondering if the experienced visitors who have travelled to WDW with a young child could help me out in starting out?!

Im looking at flying in (from a few days in NYC) arriving mid morning on Saturday 28 Sept. We will then have the following days in/around WDW:

Sunday 29th
Monday 30th
Tuesday 1st
Wednesday 2nd
Thursday 3rd we have the wedding
Friday 4th
Saturday 5th
Sunday 6th travel to Port Canaveral for a cruise

So basically we have either 5 or 6 days (depending on if we arrive on 29th or 30th, not sure yet).

Travelling will be myself, hubby and our son who will be 15 months old. I would love suggestions for our itinerary eg what parks to do when?And how much rest time and when to have it?!

We will most likely stay at Pop Century as this is where the wedding party is staying but i am also open to reccommendations of good toddler friendly resorts in the value or moderate range?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:48 AM   #2
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 38

Hi fellow Aussie,
The best value accommodation is PopC or Art of Animation, they are next door and you can walk between them, but I am to sure how long it takes. I suggest taking a look at AoA as it looks great for kids, but most feedback on PopC is very positive.

As for itinery it's not clear whether you will be in WDW on the 29th or not.
We have a toddler who wakes up really early and we need to get out so we use the extra magic hours in the morning. If you are not early people then avoid those parks.

If early risers suggest:
30th MK - eat at crystal palace (pooh bear)
1st Epcot (EMH)
2nd AK (EMH) - eat at Tusker House for late morning breakfast (Mickey)
3rd Wedding
4th HS - eat at Hollywood n Vine (Handy Manny)
5th MK - get up early and eat at Chef Mickey at contemporary for breakfast (Mickey)

If you Are not early risers swap Epcot and AK.

If you want a park for 29th do HS twice - lots of shows that entertain kids. We always do HS first as our favorite park.

With a toddler you won't be able to do it all in each park, so don't try, you will be exhausted.

Make sure you take a stroller, you can hire one buts it's expensive. You will definitely need one. Buy a cheap one, they are great to have in an airport and in the USA you can keep them in the airport until boarding - take them to gate and check in their - it is so great not to have to carry child all that way.

Do some ADRs (dining reservations) its great to sit down for relaxing lunch, with a toddler do character meals as it distracts them so you can eat.

Have fun
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:11 AM   #3
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We took or son at 14 months and had a great time. At that age they don't understand anything about being at disney and have no real opinions about what to do next (totally different them our visit at 2.5 years), so you can plan your own itinerary about what YOU want to do and see and then just drag your munchkin along with you. Take advantage of fastpasses and baby swapping to get on the big rides. Our beast happily napped in the stroller at that age, but later visits at 24 and 30 months we napped in the hotel.

Pop Century is awesome! Hope you have a great trip.

Trip report from our first DVC trip:
Plus our Anniversary Vacation:
Trip report with a potty training toddler:
I survived a trip with MIL:
A Magic Kingdom Ultimate Tour Adventure
First trip with Magic Bands
Post Holiday Trip Report
Non-Fancy Fanatics at VGF
Sept '03 (All Star Sports, DH's first trip) || March '04 (Travelodge) || March '05 (Star Island) || XMAS '06 (All Star Vacation Home) || March '07 (POP, Deluxe Dining Plan) || March '09 (POP) || June '09 Disney Land || April '11 (All Star Vacation Home, DS's first trip-14m) || January '12 (OKW, first DVC trip) || July '12 (Boardwalk, Anniversary Trip) || Sept '12 (AKV) || Jan '13 (AKV) || July '13 (SSR, Anniversary Trip) || September '13 (SSR) || January '14 (Boardwalk, AKV) || May '14 (VGF and Expedition Everest Challenge)
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:18 AM   #4
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 79

Agree with DisneyRegulars. Our youngest was around that age when we went the first time, and he just went with the flow, content to stay in the stroller or baby bjorn most of the time. Any rides he was able to go on at his age he enjoyed! He was scared at Maelstrom and Finding Nemo.
First Visit! AKL 11/26/10 - 12/04/10
2nd Visit! AoA - 11/28/12 - 12/04/12

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Old 11-18-2012, 09:27 AM   #5
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Nov 2012
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I took my son at 1.5 years and he napped in stroller. He want scared of rides just didn't like have to sit down to start the ride but once on he loved them. If you are in epcot a good place to get them to nap in is the American adventure show, good show but its dark n a little boring for kids so I took mine n he was out within 5 minutes of start
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:37 AM   #6
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Hi OP. we have taken our twin boys 6 times from the age of 18 months until just before age 3 so I will offer what has worked well for us. First of all, at that age it does not matter where you stay hotel wise. He won't care. All WDW hotels will provide a pack n play but there are very few full size cribs left (being phased out) so if you wish for him to sleep in a full size crib rent one from an offsite company (I recommend ABBF). Next, if you do not have a good stroller that has a recline and a full canopy, I recommend renting a citi mini from an offsite company. I also recommend a clip on stroller fan. They are inexpensive and really helped my guys. Late September/early October is still hot.

I will disagree with a PP who recommended utilizing early EMH at the parks. In my experiences while the first hour may be ok, the park usually ends up being very busy for the rest of the day. What works for us is to use and follow his park recommendations. We arrive at rope drop and he has never, ever, let me down. The site is free. I think usually his recommended park calanders comes out about 6 months or so ahead, usually when WDW puts up their hours.

As for the parks, my boys have enjoyed MK far more than any other park. There is just more for them to do here. They do not enjoy DHS at all. They are too young and immature to sit through the shows (they are lengthy for a 1 or 2 year old) and they are not mature enough to enjoy the rides at this park. There is a Disney Jr. Show here and my boys love the Disney jr shows but were scared during the show. It is dark and was loud. You will know your son so your baby might be different. We also don't spend a lot of time at AK. They enjoy the safari and the triceratops spin but that's about it. We have a good zoo in our area so they didn't get too excited about the animals. They actually did ok at Epcot. I have a huge Nemo lover so for one of my sons, it was a hit. They liked the aquarium too. The also liked the Mexican boat ride (not the Norway one), imagination, and spaceship earth. What gets me is the they loved Living with the Land, every single time. Maybe I have weird kids.

As for rest time, that all depends on your touring style and your little one. Some kids do great to go back to the hotel to take a nap. My two do not. What works best for us is to let them nap in their stroller and then we take a break and go swim or something else fun.

What else hasn't worked well for us is ADR's. We learned early not to do them. I never know if my boys are going to be tired, need a break, or just plain not hungry. We eat mostly CS while we are there and it's just what works best for us. We have done a few character breakfasts but my boys haven't been into the characters much so it gets a little pricey. So for us, we see the characters in the park and skip the pricey meals.

Hope this helps some. Ask any questions you need too. Each child is different so this is what works best for us. Hope you have a great trip and happy planning.
Me , DH , DS 3 , and DS 3
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