There is something so magical about Disney World Vacation planning with your kids… especially because they view the world in a whole new way!
One of the parenting hacks we’ve learned for disney world is to make a bucket list for each kid. This really helps us plan our day, stay prioritized, and not miss anything so there are no regrets on the way home!
Some ideas for a Bucket List for Kids at Disney World Include: One Ride, One Character Meet, One Food Item, and One Souvenir. Other Bucket Lists can be focused on just rides, or just attractions, but try to limit them to 3-5 items per day so you can still enjoy the Surprise and Delight Items at the Disney Parks!
You can also see the bucket list for the whole family in this list of 16 Can’t Miss Moments at Disney World!
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Disney World Can’t Miss list for Kids and Families
1. Meet Favorite Characters!
There is nothing better than meeting your favorite Character, even if they are the only ones you meet on your trip!
You can find Mickey at every park, but other characters are a bit more elusive. For example, the Frozen gang (Anna, Elsa and Olaf) are spread out between two parks.
When you meet Characters, consider a picture, video or special autograph! Maybe just tell them about your day, or some insider secrets (they really do play along!) Last time I saw Princess Tiana she promised to give me her beignet recipe!
2. Catch a Show (or two!)
You’ll find so many things to do at Disney World besides rides and characters! There are a number of shows and smaller attractions at Disney Parks.
Fans of the Lion King (and Broadway) will love The Festival of the Lion King at Animal Kingdom.
Princess lovers unite across the parks as Magic Kingdom and Epcot have a number of prerecorded and live shows to choose from.
Star Wars Families can take part in shows at Hollywood Studios, and can also enjoy The Muppets and Lightning McQueen while they are there!
3. Eat World Class Snacks and Meals
This blog started with food and it’s something I just have to talk about! Disney World has some crazy cool things for food items (yes! Even if you have Food Allergies!)
Disney is notorious for coming up with new themed snacks every season and special event. There’s even unique items at the resorts (sounds like a good ‘rest’ day activity for resort hopping!)
Typically I look over at DFB instagram for the latest treats (then decide if I should inquire about the allergies), but you can also wing it with a “try fun new foods” bucket list category!
4. Enjoy the Nighttime Shows
Typically every Park has a nighttime show. Things have changed since the 2020 closure, and I’m not sure what that will look like in the Future. For now, we have two new shows that are sure to delight!
There is the New Magic Kingdom Nighttime Show, as well as the New Epcot Show. PLUS each park will be doing fun nighttime displays through 2023 as part of the 50th Anniversary Celebration.
5. Grab a Special Souvenir
The Disney Stores are FILLED to the brim with special souvenirs, and the *majority* of these are custom to the area/the park.
If your child has a souvier or gift in mind, remember that this might be the only place you will find it at the Parks and it’s almost never online! They do this to increase sales (scarcity is a powerful marketing tool!) but also because they have so much merchandise it’s not possible to carry every item every place!
If you see something and love it, consider doing package pickup at the end of the night or resort drop off or have it shipped straight home!
6. Ride some fun and unique Transportation
Disney World has some really cool options for transportation! There’s buses, skyliners, boats, monorails and ride share vehicles.
It’s a lot to consider as an adult, but there’s true magic seeing it through a child’s eyes!
My oldest loves the skyliner and monorail, my middle child desperately loves to ride the buses, and my youngest (and all the kids really) go wild over the chance to ride a train!
Here’s some transportation options!
- Catch the Skyliner from Epcot to Hollywood Studios
- Monorail from Magic Kingdom to Epcot
- Ride the Buses from any resort to park OR park for free at Disney Springs and ride to a resort to go hopping
- The Ferry Boat from the Ticket and Transportation Center to Magic Kingdom
7. Enjoy the Rides
I moved this towards the end, because every one thinks of rides at Disney World when planning. And yeah, they are fun! But there’s so much more to a vacation than the rides.
Some notable rides for kids that I recommend to everyone include:
- The Seas with Nemo and Friends- EPCOT
- Toy Story Mania at Hollywood Studios
- Dumbo at Magic Kingdom
- Navi River Journey at Animal Kingdom
More thoughts on the Must Do items at Disney World for kids
your vacation is your own… but you also can’t do everything if you stayed at Disney World for a month! There is SOOO much to do!
Making a list helps increase your happiness and sanity when planning, and makes the trip so much fun to look forward too! Think about what your kids would enjoy the most, and plan things around that to make this trip full of memories!