You’re never too grown up or too old for a magical trip to Walt Disney World. Kids and adults of all ages are sure to find plenty of fun and thrills at any Disney park and resort.
But, keep this in mind, some of the more active and fast-paced aspects of Walt Disney World might make your time there a bit uncomfortable for the older members of your group.
Senior citizens come in all shapes, sizes and activity levels! What one Grammy does may be too much for the next Grammy in line. Just as you need to know your toddler’s breaking point, be sure to know your senior citizen’s breaking point too.
I’m a fairly active senior citizen who knows when to say I’ve had enough so my family is never in doubt about when it’s time to take a break. Unfortunately, this past summer at WDW I saw quite a few over-heated and exhausted Grammys and Pops that should have been resting.
Senior citizens visiting without the younger members of their family have a totally different Walt Disney World experience than they do when part of a multi-generational visit. They stroll leisurely – rarely in a rush or in a hurry.
Here are a few things to consider when planning a multi-generational adventure. You’ll be glad you did!
The typical trip to Walt Disney World includes lots of walking. Even if you only explore one of the parks during your vacation, it could easily take the entire day to walk through and enjoy all of the attractions and other things to see. Not only that, you may end up walking more than eight miles!
Fortunately, Disney has made both getting to the park’s many resorts and getting around inside the gates a breeze. Rental wheelchairs are available across Walt Disney World, with electric models available as well.
As far as traveling between parks goes, Disney makes this easy for everyone too! Bus, Minnie Vans and even Uber go a long way in taking the hassle out of maneuvering around Walt Disney World.
Choose the Right Attractions
The rides and attractions at Disney World are suitable for children of all ages. However, some of them might include jerky movements senior guests may want to avoid.
For example, both Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad include quick turns and sudden movement that may be jarring to guests with issues such as arthritis. It may be best to have other family members ride these rides first to help you determine if they’re for you.
If rides aren’t exactly your speed, there are other attractions and activities to take part in that you’ll probably find more to your liking. For example, the World Showcase: DestiNations Discovered tour gives guests an inside look at the architecture used in the design of the pavilions that makeup the world showcase. You can also book a tour of the Land Pavilion or the Gardens of the World in Epcot.
If you love animals, consider taking a leisurely stroll along one of two walking trails. Choose the Maharajah Jungle Trek or Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail . . . both not as strenuous as they sound. Find yourself surrounded by interesting animal habitats like no other. The Caring for Giants tour is also another option.
The MyDisneyExperience app (available for mobile devices) is a great tool, when it comes to planning out your Disney vacation with seniors in mind. Not only can you use it to view information on different dining venues and attractions, you can use it to make reservations right from your phone, as far out as six months in advance. No more long waits in line.
This is especially helpful if you’re traveling with children, who may be a bit overwhelmed by all the parks have to offer. You can easily go over your itinerary with them ahead of time. Although Grammy and Pop may really want to see all the kids experience a great time – there is no rule that says you must stay together at all times.
Just as you need your space, the grandparents do too! Sometimes sitting on a bench people watching is enough for their afternoon enjoyment so have a plan to meet for dinner or back at the resort.
These are just a few tips, regarding Walt Disney World for seniors. Don’t let mobility issues or thoughts of “being too old” stop you from visiting the most magical place on earth. Mickey and friends are waiting for you!