Every person has their favorite time of year to visit Disney, or a time they feel is the best time of year to visit. Mine just so happens to be January. You can read about why in my article “Disney World in January- 8 Reasons Why it’s the Best Time to Visit and What You Should Know Before You Go”. Having just got back from our vacation about a week ago, all the wonderful things we did is still fresh in my mind. So here are some of the awesome experiences I had while vacationing in Disney the second week of January.
6. Christmas in January
I’ve stated this in many of my articles, many times, and I can’t stress it enough. The best time to view all of Disney’s wonderful, beautiful Holiday decorations is in January. Sure, Christmas is technically in December. But with holidays comes crowds, and no one likes crowds. Luckily if you visit after Christmas and after the New Year, you’re going to get that same magical, Disney Christmas feeling, but without the over crowding and incredibly long wait lines. If you have never seen the decorations at Disney World, this is a must.
5. Mizner’s Lounge
Since our trip was an adult’s only trip, we were able to experience some things that we never have before. On this particular night we had dinner reservations at the Grand Floridian Café. We arrived at the Grand Floridian a little early. I like to walk around and really soak in the atmosphere. We stumbled upon Mizner’s Lounge. We actually found this a few days before, during the day, but it didn’t open until 4pm. So, now that it was open, we decided to stop in for a drink before dinner. This place was lovely. The drinks were not outrageously priced, compared to some other places in Disney. We had a couple drinks, looked out the window, listened to the band, and really just let our vacation sink in. This is really a nice place to sit and relax before or even after dinner. It might even become a tradition for us!
4. The Boardwalk Bakery
Disney’s Boardwalk is a great place to visit when you want something else to do besides going to a park. It’s open to anyone staying on or off property. It’s so much more than just a resort. The bakery is another one of those places we’ve always wanted to stop in, but just always pass up. We had just finished having lunch at Big River Grille and Brewing Works, a short walk away, and made sure we stopped at the bakery. I really had my hopes up for this lemon and blueberry cupcake I had seen on online reviews. Unfortunately, they didn’t have it. But I was not going to let that ruin my day. So I decided to try the fruit tart. I don’t normally eat things like that, but it looked so good. When we got back to our room, I decided to try it. Let me just say, I will make sure I get one every time I visit Disney World. It was probably the best dessert I have ever had. No, it definitely was the best dessert I have ever had.
3. Wishes/Illuminations Viewing Spot Fastpass+
Normally I wouldn’t use a Fastpass+ on a viewing spot for a firework show, but this trip was all about spontaneity and trying new things. Mostly because thrill rides weren’t everybody’s thing, so fireworks were a safe choice. Starting with Illuminations at Epcot, I would probably do this again. We got to the Fastpass+ area about twenty minutes early. We definitely didn’t need to get there that early, but it was our first time, so we didn’t really know. All together there were maybe thirty people in the Fastpass+ viewing area. Which was nice because you weren’t squished together or trying to look over someone. And the viewing spot was prime! Now, the Fastpass+ for Wishes at Magic Kingdom I would absolutely do again. Usually by the time Wishes starts, I’ve had enough crowds and I just want some space. The viewing area was in the Rose Garden area. It was grassy and everyone was spread out. The view was perfect. Seriously, I don’t think I’ve had a viewing spot that great in a really long time. So overall, I would say I do recommend using your Fastpass+ for a fireworks viewing area.
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2. Festival of Fantasy Parade
Normally, my family isn’t really the parade watching type. But like I said previously, this trip was about trying new things. So I was bound and determined to watch this parade to the end. We had been there since the park opened, so by 2 o’clock we were ready for a rest. We walked up to the top of the train station, grabbed a table and chairs and people watched for the next hour. By the time the parade came around, the train station was packed to the gills. It was a perfect spot for viewing the parade. The parade was really like nothing I have ever seen before. The detail, the creativity, the characters, all designed incredibly well. It was absolutely fantastic. Definitely worth seeing.
1. Lunch at Big River Grille and Brewing Works
I’m choosing this as number one mainly because I had such an awesome experience here, but also because I feel it is completely underrated and I think everyone should know about it. I have only been here a couple times and each time it has been a great experience, but this past time, it was an excellent experience. We decided to go for lunch, to my surprise, it wasn’t crowded at all. We sat inside, right next to the window. It was a beautiful, sunny day and we enjoyed looking out at the water and the rest of the resort. Our waiter was fabulous. He even gave us soda and water in to-go cups, which I always feel is a super nice gesture. The food was excellent. Prices were normal, but the service is what really put this place over the top. I don’t think it gets enough credit. No, it’s not themed and no, there are no characters, but it’s a nice relaxing restaurant with wonderful food. Perfect for an adult’s only lunch or dinner.
Overall, I really do love visiting Disney World in January and this past vacation I was really lucky to get to experience some fantastic, new things. But that is truly what Disney is about, trying new things and spending time with your friends and family. It seems like every time I visit Disney World, there is something new and exciting to experience. Whether it’s a ride or attraction, or whether it’s something as simple as a restaurant. So moral of the story, don’t be afraid to try something new!
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Photo courtesy of Disney Photo Snapper