Tuesday, January 13, 2015

5 Things to do with Dad at Walt Disney World

     Many of us grew up making powerful memories with our dads. Some of the best times of my own life have been spent doing nothing of any particular importance within the context of paternal care. Walt Disney World offers endless opportunities for dads and their kids to get away from work, school, or even the rest of the family for some good fatherly time. Here are my ideas for the very best places for you kids to take your dads on your next trip (or vice versa perhaps).
  1. Crescent Lake next to Disney's Yacht, Beach Clubs and Boardwalk Resorts is a perfect place to connect with dad. You can rent a rat racer boat together from the dock over by the Yacht Club and explore between Epcot and Hollywood Studios. At night, you can walk over by the Boardwalk and catch a magician doing his tricks, each with some popcorn in hand. For a small fee, you can rent a cycle trolly and ride it around the entire lake! They come complete with four seats, bells, and a cloth cover to keep you dry! A day on this lake is the perfect place for some fatherly time.
  2. World Showcase at Epcot is my favorite place in the world (lower case). While the Showcase is perfect to explore with anyone at all, the aspect that I connect most with dad time is meeting people from other countries. Most of the individuals that work at each pavilion around World Showcase Lagoon are citizens of the country they are representing. This means they speak the language, know the culture, and actually grew up there. They very often love talking to you about the country they love, and are an incredible wealth of knowledge and understanding of a place you probably know nothing about. Dads, take this opportunity to approach good and kind strangers with your kids, and teach them about how other cultures are different from our own, and that this is a good thing! 
  3. Disney Springs Marketplace (formerly known as Downtown Disney) is the perfect place to geek out with your dad. Have you ever heard of pin trading? Some of my fondest memories are that of buying a pin or two with dad from the giant pin station at the Market, and looking around at the pins possessed by the unbelievably dedicated collectors who spend their time standing and talking to people about pins. These people don't work for Disney, but often use all of their free time in the parks and at pin stands talking to other guests! They are often wonderful to kids, and will sometimes offer them treasures they will never forget. This makes for great adventures with dad.
  4. Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge is its own vacation. With the art, architecture, African cast members, wild animals, African dining, lobby, pool (I could go on ad infinitum), etc., featured here, you could easily spend several days being immersed in Disney's Africa. One of my favorite things to do as a child was to run around the Resort with a checklist in hand of all animals featured on the property. Disney, however, was smart and didn't put all the animals together all through the savanna. The Gemsbok is in some places, and not others. There are Bongos, but they hide in the bushes only next to the pool. I won't spoil all of it! Go run around with dad and see if you can find them all!
  5. Disney's Electrical Water Pageant is a tradition from opening day. it is a series of barges that float around the Seven Seas Lagoon outside the Magic Kingdom after dark, and often after park closing. They were designed so that children who are sleepy and ready to sleep can look out their hotel room windows for one last bit of magic before they snooze off to dreamland. The floats are bright, beautiful, and pretty magical. The music is cheesy and catchy, but it is an intimate and charming kiss goodnight from Walt Disney World. If you stay along the shores of Seven Seas Lagoon, do wake up your young one just to see this. They will wonder the next day if that time dad woke them up to see those lights on the water really happened, or if it was a dream.
     This post is dedicated to my dad, on his birthday. Happy birthday dad. I love you.

Thank you so much for reading! Subscribe and follow for more!

-William (www.facebook.com/wdwforthetaking)