Mom And Son Safari
  • On Jul 10, 2017
    Belita from SC Asked

    Hello!! My husband and I are planning a vacation to WDW. We're travelling with our 22 and 16 year old daughters. Since they're older, what types of activities could you recommend?

  • Hi Belita,

    The Walt Disney World Resort is a truly magical place for Guests of all ages. As the mom of an older teen, I suggest involving your daughters in the planning. Ask them to put together a wish-list of their favorites. Below is a list of some activities which will surely delight your family’s sense of adventure:

    1. Visit Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park to experience its newest attraction: Pandora – The World of Avatar. Explore it both day and night!
    2. Make reservations for one of several Special Events & Tours, such as Disney’s Keys to the Kingdom Tour. It will open your eyes to the magic even more.
    3. Book an unforgettable culinary journey at Victoria & Albert's, a multi-award winning Fine/Signature Dining restaurant.
    4. Reserve one of the blissful body treatments at Senses - A Disney Spa at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort.
    5. The Surfing Programs at Typhoon Lagoon are always instant favorites!
    6. Visit Disney Springs, it is THE premier Disney shopping destination.
    7. Finally, book your stay at a luxurious Disney Deluxe Resort Hotel in the Epcot Resort Area. These provide the perfect atmosphere for a more relaxing grown-up experience.

    Wishing you a most memorable visit to that wondrous place where The Magic is Endless!

    Ritzy ºOº
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  • thumbnail image for Allison
    Hi Belita ~

    I am a big kid at heart and still get butterflies every time I visit the Walt Disney World Resort! Ritzy has given you some fabulous suggestions and I wholeheartedly agree and suggest taking a behind the scenes tour. Now that they are older, your daughters may enjoy seeing how everything comes together backstage to create magic for Guests. My favorite is the Backstage Magic tour. This 7-hour tour takes you behind the scenes at some of the theme parks and other areas Guests don't even realize exist. My favorite part is always going down into the "utilidor" tunnels at the Magic Kingdom! I get so excited every single time! EEEEE!

    Another of my favorite activities is parasailing at the Contemporary Resort. This gives you a bird's eye view of the Magic Kingdom. It is so peaceful and beautiful when you're soaring high above.

    Along with all of the amazing dining and shopping locations at Disney Springs, you will also find some wonderful entertainment options including Cirque du Soleil La Nouba. This performance includes some breathtaking acts that you can't see anywhere else. While you're at Disney Springs, take a cruise in a vintage Amphicar. This is like something out of the movies that is fun for all ages.

    A fireworks specialty cruise is a relaxing way to see IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth at Epcot or Happily Ever After at the Magic Kingdom. It is the perfect way to top off a magical day.

    Wishing you minnie magical memories :-) Allison V.

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  • thumbnail image for Jacqueline
    Greetings, Belita and thank you for consulting us at the Disney Parks Moms Panel!

    My fellow panelists offered excellent suggestions, many of which have been greatly enjoyed by my 17 and 23 year olds. May I also offer Disney’s Planning for Older Teens resource presenting you with choices to make informed decisions based on your family’s preferences?

    As well, I have to tell you about a wonderful dining experience called, Dine with an Imagineer at The Hollywood Brown Derby. You’ll have the opportunity to learn about interesting facts and insights regarding the Disney Parks and Resorts in a discussion over lunch with a Disney Imagineer – who knows, that may spark a curiosity regarding future Imagineers!

    Dining at the California Grill for dinner in time for views of Happily Ever After fireworks show soaring over Cinderella Castle is an all-time hit with Guests of all ages! A girls’ day of pampering is in order at SensesA Disney Spa at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort after a shopping spree at nearby Disney Springs.

    Best Disney Wishes and Adventures!
    Jacqueline
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  • thumbnail image for Ricardo

    Hi Belita,

    How exciting to know you are planning a vacation with your family. It does not matter what age, everyone is bound to have a magical time!

    My kids are about the age of yours; however, we still enjoy family vacations to Walt Disney World Resort. For us, the Dining Plans are a must. They let us prepay for our meals so we can leave behind any worries about budgets. Only problem is agreeing in which restaurants to visit. Takes time, but we do agree in the end.

    You may want to consider the Disney Deluxe Dining Plan, which gives you three meals per person, per night of stay. You can choose between Quick-Service or Table-Service, and for 2018, Guests 21 and older can even get alcoholic beverages. Many of our favorites are in Epcot, like Teppan Edo. But we also enjoy dinner shows like Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue.

    One last tip: remember you can make dining reservations up to 180 days in advance. Just visit the Walt Disney World restaurants and reservations page. Happy planning!

    Ricardo.

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  • thumbnail image for Jane

    Hello Belita, 

    I always say that one of the special things about visiting the magic of Walt Disney World Resort is that there truly is something for everyone in your family, no matter what age, either young or simply just young at heart!  Plus I can totally relate to your family dynamics as I'm a Mum of both adult and older teenage children myself.  

    My whole family enjoys staying in the rustic surroundings of the Cabins at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort not only for the home away from home sweet home lodgings, but also for the plethora of fun activities from archery to wagon rides on offer at this peaceful Resort.

    I'm sure both your darling girls would love the freedom of exploring the back trails of Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort on the all-terrain Segway X2 Wilderness  Back Trail Adventure which gives Guests 16 years and older an exciting 2 hour tour.  Or how about my girls favourite activity; Horseback Trail Rides at Tri-Circle-D Ranch.  These gentle 45 minute horseback rides are suitable for beginners upwards and will usually provide Guests a unique window onto the natural wildlife which lives freely in and around The Fort. 

    Wishing you a magical upcoming trip to Walt Disney World Resort where I'm sure you'll make some unforgettable memories with your dear family. 

    Have a great Disney day ~ Jane 

     

     

     

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  • thumbnail image for Donyell
    Hi Belita,

    Thank you for bringing this terrific question to us! Although my girls are not as old as yours are, I have traveled to the Walt Disney World Resort with older teens and young adults as a group chaperone. I am proud to say that I lived to tell the tales!

    Be sure to review the attractions for each park and prioritize the ones everyone wants to experience. If your daughters love narrating their lives through photos, engage in a PhotoPass challenge and see how many photos they can take with Disney PhotoPass photographers around the parks. As long as you get Memory Maker, you would capture all of those tired, crazy, funny moments!

    Along with the other fabulous suggestions given by my fellow panelists about Disney Springs, try a movie and meal at AMC® Disney Springs 24 Dine-In Theater or, if your daughters have a competitive edge, visit Splitsville Luxury Lanes. While at Disney Springs, stroll over to STK Orlando - the music and view from the outdoor patio are vibrant! For a comprehensive list of special tours and events, review the entire Enchanting Extras Collection - elephants melt my heart, so the Caring for Giants tour is special to me. At about an hour, the tour provides a close-up experience with the elephants and you still would have time to explore the rest of Disney's Animal Kingdom!

    Magic, Memories and Minnie Mouse hugs,
    Donyell
     
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  • thumbnail image for Todd

    Hello Belita!

    Walt Disney World Resort has so much Endless Magic for the young and young-at-heart around every corner for those adventurous enough to search for it.

    I can only hope that my young children will maintain that sense of creative exploration when they get to be your daughter's ages.

    Epcot's World Showcase is a playground for the senses and one that is experienced differently by the youngest visitors and those more "mature" amongst us. I recommend that you and your family plan an "around the World(Showcase)"-type day where you visit each of the Pavilions and enjoy a similar activity, snack, souvenir or experience.

    If you have ever seen kids walking around getting their Epcot Passports stamped or coloring their Duffy Bears at the Kidcot Fun Stops, it is the same premise but designed by your family, for your family.

    Some suggestions you may wish to consider are:

    • Getting a photo of your daughters with an International Representative at each pavilion(I'm doing this with a instant camera and having the Representative write a note on each picture after it's taken);
    • finding a souvenir unique to each country and pavilion(like the Christmas Pickle in the Germany Pavilion);
    • Sharing a single dessert with your family at each Pavilion; or,
    • a pre-planned scavenger hunt where you find culture-specific items in each pavilion (a fez in Morocco, a hockey item in Canada, etc.).

    Whatever you choose to do in World Showcase, do it together and enjoy experiencing Walt Disney World Resort with the young Adults your Children have grown up to be.

    Happy Adventuring!

    ~Todd

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  • thumbnail image for Jennifer
    Hi, Belita!

    How very exciting to be vacationing at Walt Disney World Resort with your family! My fellow panelist friends have already made some pretty great suggestions for you, and I don’t want to echo them, but I especially LOVE Ritzy’s suggestion for the Surf Program at Typhoon Lagoon as that was the #1 activity that I was going to mention!

    Being a high school teacher, I actually find that a lot of young adults enjoy sleeping-in and relaxing (no surprises here, I am sure). Why not spend a day at your Disney Resort hotel enjoying the pool? If you haven’t already made your Disney Resort hotel Reservation, might I suggest staying at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort? Here, your daughters will have access to Stormalong Bay, a water wonderland perfect for sunbathing, enjoying the lazy river and finding  true relaxation. 

    Although I usually suggest arriving early and getting in as much Disney magic as you can earlier in the day, with young adults, I would tend to leave a few “unstructured” days for them where they can sleep late (and maybe even stay up late). Perhaps making your FastPass+ Reservations for later in the day is a good idea. This way, you will be able to see Pandora - The World of Avatar in all of its bioluminescent glory after the sun goes down!

    I hope you and your family have a wonderful vacation and remember to pop in to see us again soon!

    Jen
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  • thumbnail image for Cathy

    Hi, Belita!

    When my Mouseketeers were little, I used to think that our Walt Disney World vacations would not be as fun as soon as my kids grew up. Boy, was I wrong. Traveling with older kids (young adults!) is actually a blast and I am loving traveling with my teens, and they still love every minute of their Disney vacations.

    It is so fun to enjoy all the great dining with my kids. We no longer have to make sure there is chicken and fries on every menu, so we can explore all the unique restaurants in Epcot. A family favorite is San Angel Inn Restaurante in the Mexico pavilion. The food and atmosphere are simply amazing at this location.

    My kids also enjoy the great concerts that are presented throughout the year at Epcot. In the spring, they enjoy Garden Rocks Concert Series at the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, and during the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, we look forward to the Eat to the Beat Concert Series. Check the calendars for special events during your travel dates.

    While planning your vacation, look at what you will enjoy, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised to see that your almost-grown-up kids will enjoy many of the same things. What a nice way to vacation!

    And remember when your kids were little and needed mid-day naps? Well, now YOU will be the one needing a nap to keep up with your kids! But it is all good, maybe a bit tiring, but great to see your family enjoying the magic of Walt Disney World together. Enjoy your time with your family, and I hope you have many more magical memories ahead of you!

    Cathy

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