Though it’s no secret that Florida summers can be hotter than the surface of the sun, it’s also one of Walt Disney World’s busiest seasons. There’s no way to avoid the high temperatures, but there are some things you can do to plan for hot fun in the summertime. As a follow up to TouringPlan’s previous Disney World summer tips, here are some additional ideas to keep you cool in the kingdom!
It’s tempting to dive into your Disney vacation full force, but consider your trip a marathon and not a sprint. While you may expect to feel tired after a day touring Walt Disney World, little can prepare you for the exhaustion of doing it in 90 degree weather with high humidity.
Take advantage of early mornings and late evenings. While this can be difficult, especially with younger kids on sleep schedules, touring is much more comfortable than in the middle of the day. Keep in mind that Florida thunderstorms frequently roll through in the late afternoon, giving you another good reason to take a break.
With the prices of bottled water, soda and other beverages constantly on the rise, it’s easy to convince yourself to hold off on quenching your thirst until it’s a “need” rather than a “want”. Don’t wait. A cold soda, sports drink, or, especially, a slug of water could be the difference between a happy traveling group and the apocalyptic meltdown that’s just an hour away.
Of course, Disney attractions can give you a quick cool down as well. Disney World offers two terrific water parks, Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon, and attractions like Kali River Rapids and Splash Mountain are perfect for a hot summer day. Whether it’s the refuge of air conditioning or the splash of a wet ride, you don’t always have to stop playing to cool down. Here are some of our (dry) overlooked favorites.
- Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover: A favorite of our family, the Peoplemover rarely has a line and puts a cool breeze in our hair.
- Mickey’s Philharmagic/Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress: Even on the busiest days, you won’t typically wait long to enjoy the air conditioning in either of these attractions. As a bonus, the running time of both shows is long enough to give you a sufficient cool down.
- Walt Disney World Railroad: You won’t find air conditioning on this one, and the wind never really picks up on the journey, but it’s a great way to save yourself long walks between lands. Use it for transportation to get where you’re going, avoiding crowded walk ways in the blazing sun.
- Future World: With so many interactive elements, several of the Future World pavilions offer cool areas to explore without waiting in long attraction lines. Innoventions and The Seas offer relatively uncrowded hands-on exhibits and, while some spots are busier than others, it’s also possible to find quiet corners where a napping child can sleep while a sibling plays.
- Sunshine Seasons: Most guests visit The Land on their way to Soarin’, but its good for more than just the flight. Fresh food offerings make it a great spot to grab a snack or even a meal.
- Voices of Liberty: Over in World Showcase, most countries have an indoor attraction as well as shops to visit, but Voices of Liberty in the rotunda of the American Adventure is a must see performance.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios:
- Walt Disney – One Man’s Dream: This mini-museum of Disney history deserves attention anyway, but it’s an especially nice place to visit to escape the heat. Because you move at your leisure, you can spend as much (or little) time as you need to take a break.
- Magic of Disney Animation: Like Future World in Epcot, the hands-on features in the animation building make it a fun place to play. There is a film, the Animation Academy, and character meets, but if you’d prefer to just catch your breath? You can do that too.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom:
- It’s Tough To Be A Bug: Animal Kingdom typically feels the hottest of the parks, possibly because so few of the attractions are indoors. It’s Tough To Be A Bug is one of those few, and since you’ll rarely time it perfectly, chances are you’ll wait beneath the Tree of Life for the next show. It’s not a bad thing – situate yourself near a wall to lean on, and relax until those doors automagically open.
- Rafiki’s Planet Watch: A short train ride transports you to the air conditioned learning center. The live veterinarian demonstrations can keep animal lovers occupied for hours, and the petting zoo is terrific for younger kids.
The Other Water
Disney World is full of fountains, misters, and play areas to cool guests down in the parks. If you’ve got kids, it’s a good idea to pack a change of clothes, including shoes, unless they’re wearing sandals that won’t hold water.
The most extensive water play area is the Casey Jr. Splash ‘N Soak Station at Magic Kingdom, but Epcot’s jumping fountains, and the Coca-Cola mister in Disney’s Hollywood Studios can be just as refreshing (and a lot more comfortable if you’re not looking to get soaked!).
Just remember – not ALL fountains are meant to be played in. If it looks like a water feature and not a playground, chances are it wasn’t intended to be a pool.
Like anywhere else, the heat in Disney World does not have to be unbearable, as long as you plan to give yourself plenty of rest and water.
Another alternative? You could always ask Elsa to conjure up your own personal flurry!
How does your family beat the heat? Share your best Disney World summer tips!