Experiences to Enjoy in a Group of All Ages at Walt Disney World

Photo - Michael DahlgrenJenna, an awesome reader of the TouringPlans blog, told me how she traveled to Walt Disney World with her family, ranging in ages 2-82 years old. She expressed how the group wanted to stay together the entire time, but it was hard to think of different attractions the whole group could do together and enjoy.

After hearing Jenna’s story, she inspired me to put together this list of activities and attractions that would appeal to a group of all ages.

You’ll notice that I did NOT include any attractions where a guest would have to get in and out of an attraction vehicle. I did this for two reasons:

A. You won’t have to worry about height restrictions!

B. If someone is confined to a wheel chair or electric scooter, that person will not have to stand or do any walking to get on the attraction.

Also, if you see an asterisk (*) next to an attraction, that means a FastPass+ reservation can be made.

First, a few suggestions when traveling in a larger group:

  1. FastPass+ reservations can be made 60 days in advance if you’re booked at a Disney onsite hotel and 30 days for all other guests. Use this for any attraction you really want to experience.
  2. Advance Dining Reservations (ADRs) can be made 180 days in advance. If it’s a really popular restaurant (such as Be Our Guest or Cinderella’s Royal Table (currently closed for a refurb – at this time, reservations are being taken for March 6, 2015)), book ASAP! MyDisneyExperience.com is a great way to coordinate FastPass+, dining and on-site hotel reservations.
  3. When making ADRs, remember to include any infants in your head count. I made the mistake of not counting my daughter when I made an ADR and we had to wait an additional half hour to be seated. Whoops…
  4. Consider breaking up the day to include plenty of time for rest. It’s exhausting walking around in the Florida heat all day….especially if you’re a young child or senior citizen.
  5. Be sure to set aside plenty of time to get to your destination. That way, you’ll be covered should any unforeseen delays occur within the group.

Okay I’m done blabbing. Let’s get started!

Magic Kingdom

  • Meet Mickey at Town Square Theatre* – It all started with a mouse, so jump at the chance to meet the Big Cheese himself!
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic* – Fantasyland
  • Festival of Fantasy Parade* – If you’re worried about standing throughout the parade, view it from the balcony of the Main Street, U.S.A. railroad station. It provides a great view and allows you to sit and relax.
  • Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor* – Tomorrowland
  • Wishes! Nighttime Spectacular* – A beautiful fireworks display.
  • Liberty Square River Boat – Liberty Square
  • Dine at Be Our Guest Restaurant – Fantasyland. Watch the cascading snow, explore the rooms of the castle. It’s an experience you won’t forget.
  • Carousel of Progress – Tomorrowland. A great way to cool off and reminisce about the good ole’ days.

Epcotphoto- TouringPlans.com

  • IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth* – World Showcase. A fireworks show that will bring tears to your eyes. Gets me every time!
  • Venture inside the Seas PavilionCatch a glimpse inside Epcot’s 5.9 million gallon aquarium and view the sea creatures within.
  • Explore the World ShowcaseThere is something here for everyone. “So much to learn and see!” Here I am quoting Sofia the First. Clearly I have a child.
  • Club Cool – Future World. Try different Coca Cola flavors from around the world!
  • Turtle Talk with Crush* – Future World
  • Voices of LibertyA flawless a capella group found in the American Adventure.
  • Innoventions – Future World. Fun interactive games and activities for the whole family!
  • Teppan Edo – Japan Pavilion. All eyes are on the chef as he/she prepares your meal in a complex and entertaining way.
  • Serveur Amusant France Pavilion. A French acrobat who balances from great heights on chairs and…wine bottles?

Hollywood Studios

  • Beauty and the Beast: Live on Stage* – Sunset Boulevard. A tale as old as time….I know I know, so cheesy. I couldn’t help myself!
  • Fantasmic!*- Sunset Boulevard. Mickey brings you on an adventure of good vs. evil. Who will prevail?!
  • Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular*- Echo Lake
  • Lights, Motors, Action*- Streets of America. A stunt show full of crashes, fire and explosions!
  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid* – Animation Courtyard
  • Sci-Fi Dine-In Theatre Restaurant – Streets of America. Sit inside classic automobiles as you eat and view campy clips at this drive-in theatre.
  • Shop along Hollywood BoulevardSo many shops and fun merchandise to peruse!
  • 50’s Prime Time Cafe – Echo Lake. Keep those elbows off the table and make sure you take off your hat…or Ma will do it for you.

Animal Kingdom

  • Festival of the Lion King* – Africa. Amazing costumes and acrobatics. A must see!
  • Finding Nemo: The Musical* – DinoLand, U.S.A.
  • Flights of Wonder – Asia. Get a close-up look at dazzling and exotic birds.
  • Rainforest Cafe – The Oasis
  • It’s Tough to Be a Bug* – Discovery Island. Shrink down to the size of an insect in this cute and engaging show.
  • Pangani Forest Exploration Trail – Africa
  • Tusker House Restaurant – Africa. Meet Donald and Daisy among other Disney characters while you eat a scrumptious meal.

photo - TouringPlans.comOn Disney Property

  • Enjoy time by (or in) the poolSip on a cool beverage while the kids swim or take a relaxing dip yourself. 
  • Electrical Water PageantAn oldie but a goodie. Be sure to catch this attraction from a Magic Kingdom Resort.
  • Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue – Fort Wilderness
  • Fireworks Specialty Cruise – Enjoy a nighttime cruise with loved ones as you watch the Wishes or IllumiNations fireworks. 
  • Disney’s Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show – Polynesian Resort. A luau full of food and dancing!
  • Walk along the BoardWalkThis is something I must do every time I visit Walt Disney World. Such a welcoming atmosphere.
  • Roast marshmallows over a campfiresee a list of resorts that offer this here.
  • Do some shopping at Downtown Disney.
  • Watch a movie under the stars!A great way to decompress after a busy day at the parks. 

Have you traveled in a large, multi-aged group? What suggestions do you have? Let me know in the comments!

Angela Dahlgren

As the host of TouringPlansTV, Angela produces weekly videos on our TouringPlans YouTube channel. When she's not talking about the happiest place on earth, she spends her time entertaining her own little Minnie and Mickey Mouse. You can find her on twitter @AngelaDahlgren

6 thoughts on “Experiences to Enjoy in a Group of All Ages at Walt Disney World

  • February 11, 2015 at 6:58 am
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    We went to Magic Kingdom and Epcot as a Group of 10 ranging in ages 9 to 78. There was plenty for us to do – much more than you have suggested here!!
    My father (78) even went on Test track twice!

    I had made touring plans for both parks and booked FP+ for the whole Group. My parents didn`t do BTM or Space Mountain so when the teen-agers went on these rides they would enoy a snack instead. My parents wanted to make the most out of their two days at the parks and went on as many rides as they could. I don`t think you should underestimate seniors – most of them are still young at heart and love to spend time with younger memebers of the family.

    • February 11, 2015 at 9:19 pm
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      Several years ago, we went with our son (age 7) and my parents. I was amazed that my 79-year-old mother went very willingly on Big Thunder Mountain RR – the more so when she happily went along a second time a day or so later! It helped that she had ridden it a number of years earlier – and I rode beside her to hold and stabilize her so she wouldn’t get thrown around too much – but she was fine – and she happily rode a second time with us a few days later! (She declined to go on Splash Mtn, and I wouldn’t have let her go on Space Mountain – that one leaves ME hurting from the rough, jerky ride.)

    • February 20, 2015 at 10:29 pm
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      Elisabeth,

      It’s certainly not my intention to underestimate seniors. I’m simply giving options the whole family can enjoy together, whether you’re eight months old or eighty years old.

      I appreciate the comment!

      Angela

      • February 20, 2015 at 10:31 pm
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        Brad,

        I agree with you about Space Mountain. That one leaves me with a neck ache!

        Glad you all had special time together on your trip!

        Angela

  • February 11, 2015 at 7:24 am
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    Thank you for this excellent resource! It’s so easy to forget just how much at WDW appeals to “children of all ages.” I’ll share this with friends who think their extended families might not have enough to do together to justify a vacation to WDW.

    • February 20, 2015 at 10:31 pm
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      DisneyDad,

      Comments like this make me love what I do even more!

      Thanks for reading. 🙂

      Angela

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