Tips & Tricks

11 Things At Disney World That Are Sometimes Better Than Rides & Shows

Whenever you visit the place where dreams come true, there all kinds of great things to do at Walt Disney World, including, of course, attractions and entertainment. The choices of rides and shows are endless, but there are so many other not-as-popular options to focus on besides waiting in lines for a ride or ensuring you get a good spot for the parade.

Guests can become consumed with hitting as many rides and shows as possible that they often forget those aren’t the only two choices. Believe it or not, but there are other things to do that are just as amazing as hopping on Space Mountain or watching Fantasmic.

If you only travel to Disney World once a year or are visiting for your first time, then, yes, you want to squeeze in as much as possible. However, even if you’ve never been to Disney World, this still applies to you. Also, those people who happen to visit once every year, book more than one annual trip, or are an Annual Passholder, be sure you’re not just solely pay attention to rides and shows.

There are many smaller things people sometimes don’t appreciate enough, which is where this list comes into play. Here are the things I try to embrace wholeheartedly every time I’m at Disney World.

1. Arriving

There is no better feeling than arriving at Disney World. If you fly into Orlando, you know how wonderful it feels to grab your luggage and board Disney’s Magical Express. Or, if you drive or even live near Disney World, as soon as you go through the Walt Disney World gates and are officially on Disney property, well, the joy can be overwhelming. The excitement never goes away upon your arrival and it’s a feeling everyone should embrace and enjoy for as long as possible.

2. Walking Around

Walking around Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom is the best. When you’re not in a hurry or don’t have a busy schedule, to be able to walk through the parks slowly and at ease is so satisfying. Simply walking around and taking your time is one of the most enjoyable Disney experiences.

3. Eating

There is nothing quite like Disney food. From Mickey Pretzels to Disney popcorn to Carrot Cake Cookies to counter and table service restaurants providing some delicious meals, there are so many food options at Disney World. It makes your trip worthwhile, and I highly recommend exploring all of the choices and trying new dining locations each time you visit.

Mickey Pretzel

4. Drinking

Like eating, drinking at Disney World is the best. Of course, you can drink your way around Epcot, aka “drink around the world,” which is always a good time. But, there are also great non-alcoholic beverages. From Joffrey’s variety of choices (you must try the coffee and flavored iced tea!) to the Minute Maid Raspberry-Lemonade Slushy at Sunshine Tree Terrace in Adventureland to Kona Café’s French press coffee, the beverage options are endless.

5. Listening To The Music

Have you ever taken a moment to listen to the music being played in the parks or resorts? The music loops are created specifically for each park, land, and area. The soundtracks bring Disney to life even more than the decorations and lights. When you’re not at Disney World, you can even listen to the music on YouTube. All you have to do is search for “Disney World music loop” or be more specific by typing in, for example, “Main Street, U.S.A. music.” It’s not the same as hearing the audio at Disney World, but you still won’t be able to stop smiling.

6. Sitting

Like walking around, sitting on a bench or in a chair or on a curb is the greatest Disney activity — seriously. First of all, I love people watching, so, the more I can do it, the better. Secondly, if you’ve never gone to Disney, sat down, and just watched what’s going on around you, you’re not living your best life. Believe it or not, but Disney is the best place to sit and take in your surroundings.

7. Walking Through Shops

Disney shopping is the best shopping. There are all kinds of stores with so many great souvenirs. I enjoy walking around shops as much as I love riding an attraction — for real. There are always new items and everything is just adorable. Plus, there’s something fun about walking through a Disney store. For those who’ve done it, you know what I mean.

Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Island Mercantile

8. Taking In The Views

Trust me when I say stop, take a breath, and look around when you’re at Disney World. You need to take in the views, the sounds, the smells, the people, the atmosphere, and everything else. Even if you’ve been to the parks a million times, I guarantee you will notice something new. There are so many details at Disney and it’s impossible to see them all at once. By taking it slow and really exploring an area could lead to an amazing experience.

9. Riding The Monorail

Who doesn’t love riding the Highway in the Sky? Not only is the Monorail relaxing, but it’s like a mini-tour. The Disney transportation system takes you around to the Contemporary, Polynesian, the Grand Floridian, Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and the Transportation and Ticket Center. During the ride, an audio recording comes on giving you facts about each stop, which I love hearing every time. Plus, you can’t beat the monorail views.

10. Exploring Resorts

Admittedly, I haven’t done enough of this, but when I have the chance I enjoy it so much. As much fun as it is to be at the parks, the hotels have so much to offer. From the themes to the restaurants to the bars to the shows to the activities, Disney resorts are like mini-parks. They aren’t just for sleeping, so make sure you take the time to explore all of the amazing resorts on Disney property.

Walt Disney World, BoardWalk Resort

11. Just Being There

There is nothing better than simply being at Disney World. I could sit on a bench all day and be content  — with a Joffrey’s donut and cup of coffee, of course.

There will always be so many different things to experience at Disney World, so make sure you take the time to try new things and never take for granted the small stuff, like walking down Main Street.