Things to do in Disney World outside the theme parks         

Most families will travel to at least one park on their holiday to Walt Disney World in the USA, but trying to visit all the parks in one trip can be a bit stressful and also extraordinarily expensive. Luckily, the Walt Disney World Resort has become so big, that there is actually an entire world outside the parks that still captures all the charm and magic of the theme parks, but provide a slightly more leisurely and inexpensive experience.

Here are some ideas for activities for the whole family that don’t require a ticket, but still provide a magical Disney Experience.

Hop on the Monorail

Riding the monorail throughout the parks is actually a great way to spend the afternoon. If your little one’s feet are tired, but you still would like to do some exploring, try hopping on the Disneyworld Monorail. You can travel to several locations throughout the grounds using the Resort monorail. This line makes the rounds across the Ticket Center, the Polynesian Village Resort, The Grand Floridian, The Contemporary Resort and Magic Kingdom. The Monorail travels along the Seven Seas Lagoon, which is a man-made lake located south of Magic Kingdom.

The views from the Monorail are beautiful, and the younger ones will enjoy sitting by the windows. It stops at some of the most famous hotels in the Walt Disney World Resort. The Monorail goes straight through the building itself, where you can catch a glimpse of the lobby below. It can be quite a nice break from the busy theme parks, and a way to cool off on a hot day.

Visit the hotels

Disney World Resorts are so well themed and so meticulously designed that it is almost worth travelling to Orlando just to visit the hotels. Many of the hotels have different themes, and some are more child-friendly than others. Particular highlights include the Polynesian Village Resort and the Animal Kingdom Lodge.

At the Polynesian Village you can visit Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto. This haunt is located just next to the lobby of the hotel and feels like you have stepped into a tiki bar from days past. The drinks come in collectible Disney tiki mugs and can be non-alcoholic. There is also an outdoor bar where you can catch a view of the fireworks from across the lake.

The Animal Kingdom Lodge has many amenities that are available to the public. There are numerous restaurants dedicated to different African cuisines. There are outdoor bars and restaurants where you can enjoy the view of the wildlife roaming freely on the grounds behind the park. Of course, there are also shops throughout the park where the kids can get some great souvenirs.

Complimentary Activities

Throughout the entire resort, there are activities for the whole family that are usually complimentary. Simply strolling down Disney Springs or Disney Boardwalk, there are usually free shows and different types of entertainment right along the shops.

One particularly fun activity that can be done in many spots throughout the park are the campfire sessions. Most of the hotels offer these campfire sessions, where you can hear stores, take part in sing-a-longs, and roast marshmallows. Many of the locations do not require you to be staying at the hotel. If the weather permits, you might even be able to watch a film under the stars after.

magic kingdom attractions

The family needs an ESTA

Most families dream of going to Orlando, Florida for a big trip to Disneyworld. To travel to the USA, your entire family will need an ESTA. An ESTA is an electronic travel authorization equivalent to a visa. Luckily, the ESTA is much easier to apply for than a visa because they are cheaper, faster, and you don’t have to visit any embassies or consulates.

Everyone is required to have an ESTA to travel to the USA, including infants. To make the application process easier, you can make a group application, which will save a lot of time and effort. You don’t have to fill in the information over and over again, much of the information can be filled in once. There will then be one point of contact for the ESTA application, which makes it easier to plan the holiday and keep all of your travel information in one place.

The ESTA is valid for 2 years, so you don’t have to feel rushed when travelling to Disney World. You can take your time and enjoy each holiday at your family’s own pace.