Walt Disney World in Orlando is without a doubt one of our favourite holiday destinations and a bucket list destination for many families. There really is something magical about a holiday here and there is a positivity about the place that is infectious. The endless array of entertainment, activities and year-round sunshine draw families back year after year (us included!) but the sheer choice on offer can make planning your first trip somewhat daunting. So where do you start? Well, I’m taking the hard work out of planning for you and sharing an ideal two week itinerary:
Disney World 14 day Itinerary
Day 1 – Arrive in Orlando, settle into your accommodation
Day 2 – Take a day to get the kids onto Florida time, explore your accommodation, have a swim in the pool, eat out and generally enjoy being in Florida.
Day 3 – Disneyland’s Magic Kingdom – this is the park that everyone wants to see and with a bit of prior preparation, it will not disappoint. It’s worth doing your research and knowing which rides you want to go on. Disney run a ‘fast pass’ service that allows you to pre-book a time slot for each ride/show/attraction. If you don’t want to queue for two hours on each ride then you need to use this. The fast pass service comes as standard with your tickets so this is definitely worth using.
Day 4 – Rest day – my advice is to take a rest day and not pack too much into one holiday otherwise you will be carting round irritable, exhausted children. If you get bored of the swimming pool then there are always other things to see and do that take up a few hours. Give yourself the time and space to relax and take things at your own pace – it is a holiday after all.
Day 5 – Disneyland’s Typhoon Lagoon – by far my favourite of the Orlando water parks. It’s easy to spend a full day in this little (or not so little!) oasis with its laid back atmosphere. For older children the wave pool is the main draw here but as usual Disney have catered to the whole family so there is something for everyone. My top tip is to buy a refillable cup. For around $10 you can refill at the drinks stations as much as you want. We buy two or three and share as its much more economical that way.
Day 6 – Kennedy Space Centre. Ok, this is a bit of a random addition in the middle of a Disney itinerary but for me, it is an un-missable part of a first holiday in Orlando. If it really isn’t your thing then you can choose to go back to one of the parks you have already visited or do something else entirely! It’s good to have that little buffer in your itinerary.
Day 7 – Rest day. If you did choose to visit Kennedy Space Centre or another of the Disney parks then you may want a day off to chill. These are some of my favourite days.
Day 8 – Disneyland’s Animal Kingdom. Ooh I just love this park! Although there are some fantastic rides, the main attractions are the incredible safari tour and conservation zoo. A truly brilliant day out for all the family. If you are planning on going on some rides here then don’t forget to book your fast pass.
Day 9 – Rest Day.
Day 10 – Disney World’s Blizzard Beach Waterpark. A really great day out with some of the more exciting water rides – in particular Summit Plummet, an almost vertical drop on one of the tallest, fastest, freefall body-drop slides in the world. This is not one for the faint hearted! Fear not, there are plenty of tamer rides and slides for the littlies too.
Day 11 – Disney World’s Hollywood Studio. For our boys, this was their favourite park with some of the larger and more exciting rides (Aerosmith’s Rock n Roller Coaster and the Tower of Terror). There are lots of brilliant shows here too, which you can use your fast pass to book. Taking the time out to watch a show makes a nice change to being spun around at this point in the holiday.
Day 12 – Disney World’s Typhoon Lagoon waterpark or rest day.
Day 13 – Disney World’s Epcot. Epcot does tend to have a bit of a marmite effect on people. It’s full of things to see and do but not much in the way of roller coasters and rides (although there are a few). It’s a much more interactive experience and one which you should take your time to explore. As a first timer at Disney World, I think it would be a shame to miss out on this park so give it a try and decide for yourself. If it’s a hot day though there is little in the way of shade so bear this in mind.
Day 14 – Travelling home. The worst part of any holiday but when you are saying farewell to the magic of Disney, it’s particularly sad. I guarantee you will be back!
There is so much to see and do in Orlando and of course Disney World is just the start of it but this is a really lovely beginners itinerary encompassing all of the main attractions whilst leaving you time and space to relax. I will be writing another post soon with my top tips on when to fly and where to stay. If you have any specific questions then drop me a comment in the box below and I will try to include the answers in my next Florida travel post.