Walt Disney World
Published: March 1, 2023
By: Audra Claire Boyd
Walt Disney World is often considered a destination for families with school-aged children, but it can also be a wonderful trip for families with babies. Many families have children of all ages, but if you include a baby, your schedule will likely look different than that of families with older children. You can make it magical for all.
Lodging is one of the first decisions you’ll make when planning your trip. Traveling with a baby will present particular needs. The goal is to find the resort that best matches your family’s personality. Here are a few items to think through:
- Do you plan to spend more time in one park over another?
- Will you keep a stroller with you when traveling from room to parks?
- Does your baby need a separate room to nap/ sleep in?
One of the largest decisions will be where you stay, sleep and rest. If budget allows, consider staying in a resort that gives you the ability to easily hop in and out of parks for mid-day breaks. This will be much easier if your resort is a quick monorail, Skyliner or boat ride away. This gives you the ability to leave your stroller as-is when boarding whereas on a bus you’ll be required to collapse your stroller. After long hours in the parks, you probably won’t want to move a sleeping baby when traveling back to your resort. A stroller for the parks is highly recommended. Keep Orlando’s temperatures in mind when planning. Front carriers, while convenient, can be very hot.
I love the Boardwalk area resorts for many families! You’re within walking distance of both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and there’s tons of entertainment, transportation options, and dining nearby. I highly recommend Disney’s Beach Club Resort and Disney’s Boardwalk Inn for families traveling with babies. Consider a one-Bedroom Villa at either of these resorts. These rooms offer larger balconies, washers and dryers, living areas and separate bedrooms which come in handy for nap time. You’ll also find full kitchens in these rooms.
Maybe you’re interested in the Epcot/ Hollywood Studios area but would like a bit of a different “feel.” In this case Disney’s Riviera Resort may be a good option for you. With the aesthetics of a beautiful European resort and rooms that are pure luxury, you’re sure to enjoy your stay here. Located along Disney’s Skyliner path, you’ll enjoy easy access to Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and several nearby resorts.
Also located along Disney’s Skyliner path is Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, a great option at a lower price-point. Understand that there are no elevators in these buildings. Guests who are unable to use stairs, or those with strollers, will need to request a ground floor room. There can be a lot of walking involved at this resort, so I highly suggest a preferred room that will assure you’re in a location closer to transportation boarding stations. This is a wonderful, brightly-themed resort that is well-suited for families.
The Magic Kingdom Park hotel area is another one of my favorites for families. If you’re looking for the classic fairy tale vacation, then Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa might be the perfect fit for you. Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort will transport you to a slower paced lifestyle. This gorgeous location is perfect for those who want immersive theming and a laid-back atmosphere. At both of these resorts you’ll enjoy monorail access, incredible dining, fantastic pool areas, and you’ll even have a chance to view the Electrical Water Pageant as it passes by on Seven Seas Lagoon.
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is a hidden gem for families. As with Disney’s Beach Club Resort and Boardwalk Inn, I suggest a one-bedroom Villa which gives you a bedroom that can be closed off during nap time, as well as a full kitchen, and washer and dryer. At this resort you’ll enjoy water access to Magic Kingdom, a great pool area, and immersive dining options. Storybook Dining at Artist Point allows guests to interact with Snow White and her dwarves in a beautiful, storybook setting.
Available at all resorts, “Kids Night Out” is a childcare provider offering in-room sitter options for babies over the age of 6 months. Sitters are certified in child/infant CPR and basic first aid. They’ll arrive with age-appropriate toys and books, ready to entertain until you return. This is a great option for parents who’d like an evening out.
Baby Care Centers available at Walt Disney World Parks make feeding, changing and nursing a stress-free experience. You’ll find private nursing rooms with rocking chairs, feeding areas with highchairs, kitchens, changing rooms and a main room with entertainment and additional seating.
If your baby sleeps well in a stroller, consider using this time to ride some of the adult attractions. You’ll have the opportunity to utilize Disney’s Rider Swap program which allows one parent to wait with the baby while the other enjoys a ride. When he or she returns, the second parent can ride the same attraction without waiting in line.
One of the keys to an enjoyable Walt Disney World trip is scheduling activities appropriately for the needs of your family and the amount of time you have. It’s always better to exceed your expectations rather than be disappointed that you didn’t accomplish all you had planned.
Visiting Walt Disney World Resort with a baby can be so much fun! Spend a day relaxing at your resort pool. Plan for some down time, and plan to pop in and out of the parks as needed. Choose a resort that allows you to easily travel between your room and parks. Cherish this experience and create lasting memories with your little one. Even though they might not remember it, you will, and you’ll remember the reactions on their face as they experience the magic for the first time!
Audra Claire Boyd is an Alabama native, living in Vestavia Hills with her husband Michael. She is a Travel Advisor with a passion for helping families create cheery vacation memories that last a lifetime.