Arriving at Disney World a day before you want to start using your tickets? Have a late flight on your last day? Going to a hard ticket event like Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party or Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party? Just need a break from the parks? Well we’ve got you covered, with our no parks itinerary. That’s right, everything on this itinerary can be done FO’ FREE (with the exception of the money you spend on food and shopping, that is). It’s great to think that there’s a whole day that you can spend (honestly you could spend so much more), exploring Walt Disney World without having to have park tickets.
1. It doesn’t matter when you get up! You can sleep in, because you aren’t in any rush to get to the parks before anyone else! Enjoy it!
2. Have breakfast (or a leisurely brunch), at one of our two favorite breakfast places on property. The Kona Cafe at The Polynesian Village Resort has famous Tonga Toast, and our favorite, Pineapple-Macadamia Nut Pancakes. For a more hidden breakfast gem, we love The Captain’s Grille at The Yacht Club, for Chocolate Cherry Mickey Waffles. Both restaurants have a great french press, but the Kona Cafe is the only place you can get 100% Kona Coffee on property, and it is considered to be the best cup of coffee you can get at WDW.
3. After breakfast, head over to Disney Springs. We have incredibly high opinions of the new additions Disney Springs, especially since they unveiled the beautiful springs. We love exploring this outdoor shopping and dining area in the early hours of the day, when the Florida heat hasn’t built (and good Lord, can it build). Spend a few hours shopping, exploring, and if your morals allow, grabbing a day drink at The Boathouse (HOLLA).
4. Ready for lunch? Either grab something at Disney Springs (the options are endless!), or head over to Disney’s Boardwalk. The Boardwalk is a great place to relax, walk, and enjoy the ambiance.
5. If you’re staying on Disney property, the heat of the day (aka the middle of the afternoon, when you start hating everything and everyone because it’s 95 degrees in Florida), is a great time to go relax by the pool. Disney has some really well-themed pools, and it would be a shame to not take advantage of them.
6. Late afternoon is a great time for ‘Deluxe Resort Hopping’, a Disney Fan Favorite activity. Live like the top 2% without having to pay the top 2% prices! Make sure to see the Grand Floridian, Animal Kingdom Lodge, and the Polynesian.
7. For dinner, we recommend heading over to The Grand Floridian Cafe, a fantastic and moderately priced sit down restaurant in a beautiful setting. We cannot say enough good things about this place – plus, anytime we go into the Grand Floridian, we feel fancy and magical.
8. After dinner, head over to The Polynesian Village Resort, for drinks at Trader Joe’s. Chant a couple rounds of Uh Oa for us, drink a few Black Pearls, and enjoy the impeccable ambiance.
9. End your day by grabbing a Dole Whip, just outside the lobby at the Polynesian, and walking down to the Polynesian’s beach for Wishes!
We hope our ‘Parks Free’ day guide helps you figure out how to spend your free time without tickets, and still have a magical time!