Monday, June 23, 2014

Getting Started: How many days should I spend in the parks?

By: Lindsey

Let me start this off by saying this: this will be different for each person. It’s affected by what time of year you decide to travel, how many vacation days you can realistically take, what your budget is, the ages of your children and so many other factors. In general, we stay seven nights.

We've come to realize that for our family, six park days are the perfect amount. Magic Kingdom is our favorite park with a little one. There is so much to do there you definitely need more than one day. Our next favorite park, or my husband’s favorite park, is Hollywood Studios. I know a lot of people don’t like Epcot, but I actually really enjoy it. There are a few rides for us so the little one stays entertained, but there is also a more laid back, almost relaxing feel about this park. Animal Kingdom is our least favorite.

Based on our park preferences, we know that we need at least two days at Magic Kingdom, one day for Animal Kingdom, one day for Epcot, and one day for Hollywood Studios. We use that extra sixth day for whatever park we want to re-visit. That’s how we decide on our six day stay. If we were to need to take a shorter trip, we’d still try to spend two days at Magic Kingdom and try to fit in Hollywood Studios and possibly Epcot if we were able.

If we had the option of a longer trip and were traveling in the warmer months, I would add a water park day or two in there. We've actually never been to one of the water parks and I’d love to go some time!

The Disney website is a great resource for looking at the park attractions and restaurants. YouTube has some excellent ride videos so you can check out what rides are like. is a great place to start looking at restaurant menus, as well as the Disney website.

Sit down with your family, or whomever you are planning the trip with if you are keeping it a secret from the kids, and see what things you absolutely have to do and what things you wouldn't be disappointed to skip. Keep in mind that even with the best planned trip, you can’t do ALL of Disney in one trip.That’s what makes coming back so much fun!

 Go ahead, call me a nerd, but this part of the research is one of my favorite parts of planning. Right along with picking restaurants. Keep watching from some Disney Dining posts coming soon! Happy planning!

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