Oftentimes we think about vacations to Walt Disney World with the kids, but now and then you might get lucky and find yourself in the most magical place on earth with no kids! Are you curious about what this type of vacation could look like? In this guide on top tips for Walt Disney World adults, we’re going to give you the best ways for adults to spend their time at Walt Disney World! From the best resorts to the top tips for the best pool day, we’re going to break it all down.
Today, Disney is no longer just for kids. The Walt Disney World resort is full of activities and experiences that’ll cater to the kid in everyone! So, if you’re thinking about your next n0-kid Disney trip, then keep reading to get the top tips for Walt Disney World adults!
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Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Best Resorts
The first thing we’re going to look at is our recommendation for the best resorts for adults to enjoy. While one could argue that any resort could fit this bill, we’re going to look at it from the lens of an adult who will have a little more time and energy to truly enjoy all the little details that Disney resorts have to offer. You’ll notice that we focused our choices on deluxe resorts. This is because the value and moderate resorts typically are geared more toward families and kids. This would be especially true of the value resorts. Now, with that said, let’s take a look at our top choices for best resorts for adults!
#1 Best Resort for Adults: Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Walt Disney World’s flagship resort is a lavish destination with lots of intricate details and splendor. Upon entering its grand lobby, you are instantly transported to a Victorian dream. With its ornate decor and luxurious amenities, this resort takes the #1 spot for adults. I’ll mention dining a little later in this guide, but the Grand Floridian has some amazing fine-dining destinations that are perfect to enjoy without the kids.
The grounds of the Grand Floridian are magnificent. I recommend grabbing your favorite adult drink and taking a sunset walk around the resort. Take time to appreciate the architecture as well as the waters of the Seven Seas Lagoon. You might even enjoy making a stop at The Enchanted Rose for a refill! Afterward, no better way to end this stroll than by sitting in the grand lobby and people watch. People-watching is a lot of fun and not something that kids enjoy!
#2 Best Resort for Adults: Disney’s BoardWalk Inn and Villas
Our next best resort is Disney’s BoardWalk Inn which is located in the EPCOT area right on the waters of Crescent Lake. This exciting area is home to great restaurants, bars, and nightlight activities. What I like about this resort is all of the nighttime activities that can you find on the BoardWalk in the evening hours. The boardwalk is unique to this resort and you’ll find lots of things to do ranging from dining, shopping, and entertainment. Plus, with its proximity to EPCOT, you’re never too far from a great time!
While on the boardwalk, be sure to check out the Wyland Art Gallery tucked away just behind the action of the boardwalk. While admittedly this store is not your typical gift shop, it’s fun to look at the cool Disney art and dream about buying a life-size statue of Ariel for $7,000! Again, this is not something the younger dreamers will appreciate, but it’s a lot of fun to stop in as adults and appreciate the gallery.
#3 Best Resort for Adults: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
Our last pick for the best resort for adults goes to Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. Anyone could indeed enjoy watching animals from your balcony, it’s also true that doing that, coffee in hand, and no pressure of kids wanting to get to a Mickey waffle makes all the difference! Whether you’re staying at Kidani or Jambo House, this resort takes you away and makes you feel as if you’re no longer in central Florida! Plus, this resort is home to my favorite restaurant on Walt Disney World property-more to come on that!
Did you know that Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is home to the largest collection of African art found outside of Africa? If you spend some time wandering this resort, you’ll come across lots of authentic and really cool artifacts that you’d find in a high-end museum. Disney did a great job in telling stories through this art and you learn a lot about the rich diversity found in Africa through its art and folklore. It’s definitely worth the time!
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Best Bars/Dining
Are you hungry or thirsty? Because we’re ready to talk food and drinks! Walt Disney World is home to some of the best restaurants in Florida and this is where not having kids around can make for an elevated experience. Yes, we all love a yummy platter of chicken strips and fries, but when you’re able to go beyond that and enjoy some of the fine dining on property it’s a new level of enjoyment. Check out our list of the top dining options for adults!
#1 Best Dining for Adults: Jiko – The Cooking Place
I won’t even waste time beating around the bush. Jiko is hands down the best restaurant on Walt Disney World property! A quick search online will yield hundreds of glowing reviews that praise not only the delicious gourmet food but also the upscale atmosphere. I have never had a bad meal at Jiko and appreciate its consistency. While the menu doesn’t have a ton of options to choose from, you can’t go wrong with what you end up choosing. This is a must-do on your next Disney trip!
If you enjoy wine, Jiko is home to the largest assortment of South African wines found outside of the region. While prices will vary, it might be nice saving up ahead of time for a nice bottle to enjoy. Not only will it elevate your dining experience, but it could be a rare opportunity to try a bottle you may not find anywhere else!
#2 Best Dining for Adults: Narcoossee’s
Narcoossee’s is located on the ground of the Grand Floridian and recently re-opened after an extended closure. The restaurant is known for its beautiful views of the Magic Kingdom and was completely redecorated during its closure. This restaurant is known for serving delicious seafood entrees, as well as unique creations. This is definitely a place you want to enjoy without the kids as the ambiance inside is quiet, relaxing, and more adult-like.
If you time your reservation just right, you’ll be able to see the Magic Kingdom fireworks right from your table! You’ll want to look at the proposed showtime schedule for the day of your reservation, but it’s possible to time it out just right. It’s the perfect ending to what promises to be a delicious and memorable meal!
#3 Best Dining for Adults: California Grill
Our last pick for top dining is also located in the Magic Kingdom resort area. California Grill is located atop Disney’s Contemporary Resort and offers panoramic views of the entire Magic Kingdom resort area. This restaurant has a long history of being a destination for adults, not only for its food but also for its upscale vibe. The food is always delicious with rotating and seasonal pre-fixe menus. Be sure to request a seat by a window where you can enjoy a beautiful sunset!
Alright, this tip is going to be similar to the one we offered for Narcoossee’s, but it’s a good one! At the end of your meal at California Grill, guests are given access to the private rooftop deck just outside the restaurant where you can take in the sights of the Seven Seas Lagoon. Plus, if you again time it out just right, you can watch and hear the Magic Kingdom fireworks from here. It’s a beautiful sight to see and one that you can only access if you’re dining here!
If you’re looking strictly for bars, then we’ve got our list of some of our favorites on Walt Disney World property here:
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Best Unique Experiences
Walt Disney World offers lots of unique experiences that you may not have even known about! All of these magical moments are housed under what Disney calls “Enchanting Extras.” These separately ticketed events range in type but offer unique and special opportunities to make memories. We’ve picked out some of our top choices for adults to enjoy that still have the Disney magic you’re looking for. These are only a few so be sure to check out the entire list on the link above to see all that you can experience!
#1 Fireworks Cruises
There are lots of places from which you can enjoy the fireworks at Magic Kingdom. However, did you know that you can watch them right from the middle of the Seven Seas Lagoon? That’s right, this special experience named the ‘Ferrytale Fireworks: A Sparkling Dessert Cruise,’ will have you on a front-row seat that you did not imagine possible! Once aboard one of the iconic ferryboats, your ticket price will include specialty drinks (alcoholic or not) and desserts. The best part is that this event only sells to a certain number of guests per evening so no matter where you are on the ferry, you’ll end up with a perfect view of the fireworks show!
This specialty cruise leaves from the Ticket and Transportation Center. Given this location, you can easily arrive early and enjoy Disney’s Polynesian Village. Within walking distance, you might enjoy popping over to Trader Sam’s and enjoying a pre-show drink or dessert! Plus, you can’t beat a beautiful sunset along the beaches of this incredible resort.
#2 Boat Rentals
If you’re someone who loves being on the water, then this experience is going to be perfect for you! Disney allows guests to rent pontoon boats that you can charter on your own! Located on the Seven Seas Lagoon and Crescent Lake, this is an experience perfect for adults that makes for a relaxing time on the water. It might sound too good to be true, but Disney will allow you to charter this boat and explore the various rivers and canals found at Walt Disney World. Plus, if you bring your own snacks, this can be a unique opportunity to have a picnic right from your private pontoon boat!
Pontoon boat rentals can serve up to 10 adults. This means that you can grab 9 of your adult friends, split the cost, and have an all-out fun time on the water! In our opinion, this is the best way to maximize this unique opportunity. Of course, romantic cruises for two are also OK, but nothing like a group of friends enjoying a cocktail with the sunset in the background!
#3 Keys to the Kingdom Tours
The Keys to the Kingdom Tours are the perfect experience to enjoy for you to get a behind-the-scenes look at the magic behind Disney parks. This special ticketed event will take you throughout the Magic Kingdom park into areas you’ve never seen before. The expert guide will give you lots of interesting history and facts about the park that typically goes unnoticed by guests. Plus, the 5-hour tour will even include lunch! Given the fact that there’s a lot of emphasis placed on Disney history, it’s the perfect place for you to nerd out on Disney trivia! Guests must be at least 16 years old to go on this tour, so you can see that it’s especially geared toward adults.
If you are an Annual Passholder or Disney Vacation Club member, don’t forget that with proof of either, you are eligible to receive a 15% discount! We love a good discount, but sometimes we forget they’re available! So, be sure to take advantage of this if you’re interested in booking this unique experience.
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Best Recreational Activities
If you’re interested in getting active and enjoying the beautiful weather you can find at Walt Disney World, then Disney has lots of recreational activities to enjoy without worrying about them being equally as fun for children. Here, we’re talking about outdoor activities perfect for any adult on a non-park day. We’ll cover some other types of outdoor activities, but these are for those looking to get some exercise in to burn off those Mickey pretzels!
The Walt Disney World is home to four sprawling golf courses that provide all different types of golfing experiences. When it’s not too hot, unless you love the sun, golfing is the perfect adult activity to enjoy. Since a round of golf can take a few hours, it’s sure to take up a good part of your day. Disney provides rentals for all the equipment you need so you don’t have to worry about bringing anything with you on your next vacation! Courses are located throughout Walt Disney World so no matter where you’re staying, chances are you aren’t too far from a beautiful green. If you’ve never played golf before, Disney has coaches that can help you understand the basics and have you out on the course in no time!
Golf courses are attached to resorts so make sure you build in some time to enjoy the clubhouses! For example, if you happen to be playing at the Lake Buena Vista Golf Course, be sure you swing by The Turf Club Bar & Grill where you can try some yummy food or enjoy a nice drink to cool down from the heat. It’s the perfect way to combine a nice meal with some golf action!
#2 Running Trails
If you’re trying to get your steps in when not running around a park all day, Disney has many walking and running trails to enjoy! Located throughout the Walt Disney World resort, varying trails are always nearby ranging from walking to long-distance runs. Some trails are as long as 4 miles! So, if you packed your running or walking shoes, it’s easy to hop on a trail and get some great exercise in! Who says you can’t exercise on vacation!?
One of my favorite jogging paths is the one that loops around Crescent Lake. I love waking up early and jogging along the BoardWalk and the Yacht and Beach Club Resorts. Plus, if you’re an early riser, you’ll get some nice shade and enjoy clear paths to enjoy. You might even get to see them hosing down the boardwalk! It’s a lot of fun and even if you’re not a jogger or runner, I’ve done it many times as a walking path with a warm cup of coffee. In my opinion, it’s the perfect way to start your perfect Disney day.
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Tips for the Best Pool Day
Alright, alright, if exercise is not the first thing that comes to mind, then you might be thinking about a relaxing pool day instead. Good, because we love that, too! Spending the day by the pool is a great way to unwind and enjoy the amazing resort you’ve paid for! Seriously, you should never leave your vacation without enjoying some pool time. After all, that’s part of the reason why you book these lavish resorts!
Pool Day Tip #1 – Cabanas
Our first tip for making the best pool day is to splurge and rent one of the private cabanas! These luxurious cabanas are almost an extension of your hotel room as they offer most of the same amenities found in your room. Bed not included! Currently, cabanas can be rented at the pools at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Contemporary Resort, and Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club. Rentals are done by the half or full day and typically include the following:
- Private padded furniture
- Ceiling Fan
- Bluetooth Speaker
- TV with Free DVD Rentals
- Fruit Tray
- Mini Safe
- Mini Refrigerator with Complimentary Water
Reservations are strongly recommended and while they’re not cheap, they are the ultimate way of basking in luxury by the pool. No more fighting for those umbrellas or waking up early to get those poolside chairs!
Pool Day Tip #2 – Book a Late Flight
The last day of vacation can be a sad day with not much to do. However, I’ve learned to make the most of this last day by booking a late flight home and making this day another pool day! On our last trip, we booked a 9 pm flight that allowed us to spend a full day by the pool and enjoy every last hour of the trip! Plus, you’re a guest of your resort through midnight of checkout day. Also, most of the Disney resorts have complimentary showers, so we simply packed a small bag to keep with us and after a long pool day, we were able to shower before heading to the airport.
The downside is that you may get home late that night, but since this is for adults, there’s no worry about waking up early for school tomorrow (my fellow teachers not included)! So, the next time you’re booking, consider making that last day a full pool day to enjoy it up until the very end!
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: The Perfect Spa Day
If you’re looking to be pampered then look no further than planning the perfect spa day. Whether it’s a facial, massage, or other spa treatments, the spas in Walt Disney World are the ultimate in total relaxation. Technically there are four spas available on property, but since the pandemic only The Grand Floridian Spa located in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa is open for full services.
If you’re lucky enough to book one of these pampering days, be sure to take your time there. Spas usually have meditation and/or relaxation rooms. People don’t always take advantage of them! If you’re getting a massage, for example, you can tack on a couple of hours in the complimentary sauna or relaxation space for free!
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Shopping
The last thing you might be wondering about is one of my favorite things to do: shopping! Since you have no kids around, why not take some time to visit all the shops and find something special to take home! Plus, you won’t have to worry about buying anything for anyone else!
The Disney Springs area is the perfect shopping destination where you’ll find all types of stores and boutiques. Some are not Disney-related so you can really cover all your bases. Since there are so many restaurants there, you can easily spend the entire day shopping until you drop!
While I LOVE Disney Springs, I sometimes prefer to ‘resort hop’ and go to the gift shops inside the Disney resorts. It does require some navigation around Walt Disney World, but these stores often have special items that you can’t find anywhere else. For example, I love collecting polos with resort logos on them and those are usually only found inside of the resorts. Again, when you have no stroller to worry about, it’s easy to get around so why not take advantage of this! Plus, you’ll also get to know the resorts better. It’s a win-win!
Top Tips for Walt Disney World Adults: Final Thoughts
As you can see, there are tons of things to do in Walt Disney World as adults. We didn’t cover what to do inside the parks because that list is also long, but believe me, there is so much more there, too! Whether you’re a couple with no kids or simply want a mommy and daddy vacation, the Walt Disney World Resort will offer so much more than you can imagine. Remember, Walt build the concept of Disneyland and Walt Disney World as a place for adults to enjoy themselves, too!
Plan Your Next Disney Vacation!
If any of this has you ready to book your next Disney vacation, let us do it all for you! Our team of experts can work with you to put together the ultimate Disney vacation. No matter who’s coming along, we’re ready to make your Disney dreams come true. Starting with a FREE quote, we’ll show you just how much you can do on your next trip. The best part? You are guaranteed to have all the discounts out there so you never have to worry about paying more than you need to! Curious to learn even more? Check out our other guides: