Disney World is a truly magical place. As if the intentional wonders of the parks- the shows, the attractions, the food- were not enough, we’ve come up with a list of other unexpected delights you might stumble upon during your vacation. Have you experienced any of these?
1. Stumbling upon a proposal or wedding party
If you’re in the right place at the right time, you just might run into a happy couple getting engaged! Or, perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to see a couple taking their wedding photos or en route to their wedding reception!
2. Newlyweds wearing bride and groom ears
I always love seeing couples walking through the park wearing their “Just Married” bride and groom Mickey ears. Newlyweds in Disney- it doesn’t get much more magical than that, does it?
3. Spotting a family reunion (matching t-shirts and all)
I love seeing families dressed in matching t-shirts- the bigger the group, the better! On my last trip I witnessed a family celebrating the 60th anniversary of their matriarch and patriarch. Tigger and Eeyore joined in their singing and clapping at the restaurant, and it was truly a joy to witness.
4. Witnessing a child’s first character interaction
Part of what I enjoy about waiting in line to meet characters is being able to watch children in line ahead of me interacting with them. Obviously, it’s most delightful if it’s your own child. I’m 32 years old, and my dad still talks about the look on my face when I met the characters. Here’s a video of a little girl seeing Mickey for the first time. Enjoy!
5. Having a memorable conversation with a Cast Member
I love having conversations with Cast Members whenever possible. It’s always fun to ask about their hometowns (you’ll notice it listed on their name badges) or how they became Disney employees. I also like to ask them about their favorite attractions, the most outrageous day they’ve ever had at work, or (if they’re interns) how they like their college internship program.
6. Running into someone you know
There’s no shortage of people at Disney World on any given day, but I’ve heard many stories about people running into people they know during their trip! If that doesn’t have you singing, “it’s a small world after all”, I don’t know what will.
7. Meeting a stranger you have something in common with
Talking to guests around you, especially while waiting in a line or for a show to begin, is a fun way to discover more of those “it’s a small world” moments. Strike up a conversation with someone near you and you might just find that they live two towns away from you, that they frequent the same restaurant, or that they are employed in the same profession as you are. It’s always fun to make these kinds of random discoveries about others.
8. Discovering a new favorite food
Disney has such a variety of food offerings that you’re bound to find a new favorite, especially if you are adventurous. Dining in the World Showcase is a sure way to discover something new!
9. Finding a good spot to sit and do nothing
I’m guilty of over-planning my trips and don’t find myself doing “nothing” very much. However, if you can find some time to just sit down and take in the sights around you, you’re likely to feel very amused and at peace at the same time. Even if you are not engaged in a specific activity, just being on Disney property means you’ll have something to take in- sights, smells, and sounds. Find a bench in one of the parks, or a quiet spot at your resort, and just take it all in. People watching is particularly fun!
10. Noticing the beauty of the parks
Disney World is the land of details. If you take the time to really look at things, you’ll notice incredible detail all around you. Inspect the line queues, the architecture, and landscaping- it’s all done purposefully and impeccably.
11. Being inspired
While I can’t predict what will inspire you, I can assure you that if you are open to it, inspiration will find you at Disney! I work with young children in schools, and I was inspired by the message of it’s a small world on my last trip. I turned it into a lesson for kindergarteners about celebrating our differences, while remembering that ultimately we are all the same: “A smile means friendship to everyone.” Whether you are a teacher, an artist, a business owner, or anything else, you can find inspiration in Walt Disney’s dream come to life.
12. Discovering your inner child
Being at Disney World allows you to be carefree and embrace the world with a childlike enthusiasm. Take advantage of it and try to bring a piece of that feeling home with you!
13. Having an extra-special character interaction
Every so often you will come across a character who goes above and beyond the call of duty to truly be the character. Whether it is a princess who takes extra special care with your little one or a Mad Hatter who is particularly “mad”, you’re bound to remember the interaction for years to come.
14. Coming to your favorite ride after it has been closed, to find that it just reopened and has no line
Fairly often, you’ll find that rides are shut down unexpectedly for a period of time for whatever reason. The flip side to this disappointment is happening upon a ride as it is just re-opening and being able to walk right on.
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15. Receiving genuine well-wishes because of your “I’m Celebrating!” button
You can visit guest services (or Town Hall in the Magic Kingdom) to receive a free button. It doesn’t matter what you’re celebrating- an accomplishment, a new job, whatever- you can have a button! They even have specific buttons for birthdays, anniversaries, and first visits.
16. Pixie dust
When someone goes above and beyond to be kind to someone else at Disney, they call it spreading “pixie dust.” Whether someone lets you in front of them in line, hands your child a balloon, or gives you a coupon to a gift shop, it’s always nice to give and receive pixie dust!
What other unexpected delights have you experienced while visiting Disney parks? Add your experiences to our list by leaving your comments!
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