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If you’re like me, going on a trip to Walt Disney World is such a big deal that it’s hard to focus on things outside of the four theme parks. With children it’s a necessity. Kids can get overloaded with all there is to do in the theme parks, and a little detour can offer a nice change of pace, especially on longer trips. I took one of these detours for my son on a recent trip with Disney’s Pirate Adventure at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.
The Pirate Adventure offers kids ages 4 to 12 a chance to get away from their parents for a trip around the Seven Seas Lagoon on an authentic pirate ship. Well, it’s authentic to the kids, right? The adventure is offered on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday and costs $34.00 per child. The trip takes place from 9:30-11:30 a.m., and can be booked at 407-WDW-PLAY up to 180 days in advance.
We had an early breakfast at Kona Café at the Polynesian, then took the monorail over to the Grand Floridian. The Pirate Adventure leaves from the boat dock, which you have probably seen from the monorail before. We showed up about 30 minutes early and met the cast members there to check in. My son was outfitted with a life jacket, bandana headpiece and name tag, to make him up like a real pirate.
Within a few minutes, he was out on the boat, and set sail across the lagoon. Parents do not accompany the kids on this adventure, which I must admit was a source of concern. I’m an overprotective parent if there ever were one, and leaving my son with Disney was a worry. Let me say now that if you are like me and a worrier, you have nothing to fear here.
The kids were gone for a couple of hours, during which time they sailed to several different beaches around the Seven Seas Lagoon and Bay Lake. My son pointed out stops they made on the Polynesian beach, the Wilderness Lodge area, and the beaches next to the Magic Kingdom. I’m sure there were others, but he was talking so fast that it was hard to understand him. To say he was excited is an understatement.
A Photopass photographer accompanies the kids on the journey, so you can purchase pictures of your child’s adventure even if you did not join them. Each child also comes back with “buried treasure,” which is a collection of candy and pirate toys in a plastic chest. Kids are also fed a snack while on the trip.
This little detour in our trip allowed us to take a morning off from the parks, but not take away too much time. My daughter was only 3 at the time, so we did not send her on the Pirate Adventure, but we will next time we have the chance. She would not be alone, either. There were plenty of girls on the ship with my son.
For us, it was a fantastic opportunity to do something for our daughter, by taking her to visit the princesses at the Magic Kingdom, then grab lunch as a family when my son came back. Other families might take the two hours to enjoy brunch or explore the resorts around the monorail. Whatever you choose to do, your children will definitely enjoy the Pirate Adventure.
Do any of you have experience with these adventures? Or can you recommend others around Walt Disney World?