Again, many thanks to all posters for sharing their information. Fresh socks. Who’d have thought?
the magic kingdom has a baby care center next to the crystal palace. this is a good place to quiet a hot, tired toddler. there are rocking chairs there as well as toddler sized toilets.
there are lockers for rent underneath the main street railroad station. they are somewhere about 2-5 dollars to rent for the day. with a locker you can stock up with snacks, extra clothes, etc. and not have to drag it about.
each park has a baby care center and lockers. also each park has an area that has a message center so if y’all get separated you can leave messages for each other. if i knew for sure which park y’all are going to i’d post where they are.
I don’t think this has been mentioned… get those hands free bags… people call them ‘fanny packs’, I call them ‘sidecars’ – and take those instead of purses.
That way when you hold on at rides you can have your hands free and not worry about leaving something. You could get one for each child and one for each adult, and spread out the sunscreen, socks, snacks, water bottles between everyone.
Get unusually colored ones. Everybody has one that is black or navy, and if you lost it, saying you left a black pack will not mean as much as saying you’ve lost a bright neon green one with pink flowers.
Also put cords on your sunglasses so if you take them off they will still be attached to you. It is dark inside the rides and restaurants, but you don’t want to have to keep putting the glasses away or leave them somewhere.
Some plastic grocery sacks are also a good idea. If you do shop, you can put your things in those, since they have handles, and you can use them as ‘trash’ bags for dirty socks, etc. The bags fit nicely in a pack or purse all wadded up.
Ditto on the hats. A burned scalp is no fun.
Here I am, fresh back from Disney, bursting with info, and Dopers have already come through.
But, fwiw, let me reiterate on Magic Kingdom…plan on spending most of your time in “Fantasy Land” because of the kids…get there when it opens and go get a FastPass at Winnie the Pooh. While you’re waiting, hit some of the other local rides before they get crazy…Peter Pan, Dumbo, Snow White, Tea Cups. Use the Small World ride and Carousel as “fill-ins” between FastPasses. The Jungle Cruise in AdventureLand is also good for kids. Riding the train around the park and getting off at ToonTown is another relatively low-wait, enjoyable kid activity.
Tubagirl asked for a full report on how my wife, sister-in-law, and the kiddies fared at Disney World’s Magic Kingdom (should I put a trade-mark thingie there?) while putting your excellent suggestions to the test.
They arrived a bit before the gates opened, loaded with their own water and goodies. Fortunately there weren’t a lot of people, but they did find the FastPass was great as well as underutilized by many of the other visitors. I don’t recall the order in which they did things, but they did stick to little kiddie rides such as “Small World,” “Pooh,” “Snow White,” “Peter Pan,” and the monorail. I’m sure they did other stuff, but the older kids were more excited about the toys they bought and the characters they saw (judging by what they told me about). Cool clothes and sunscreen kept everybody comfortable; they didn’t need the extra pairs of socks (see below).
The kids got tired around 2:00 pm so my wife and her sister called it a day, took the kids back to the car, had picnic lunch, and drove back to Cocoa Beach. Fun. My wife couldn’t help but laugh at some other folks of a different mind-set. Obviously irritated pre-teen boy: “Dad, why are we doing it in the order it says in your book?” Equally irritated father: “Because, we’re here to have fun and we’re going to do everything!”
Thanks to each of you for providing such good advice. If you’re ever headed to New Orleans, please let me return the favor!
They saw stuff.
They rode stuff.
They bought stuff.
They had a good time.
[And wasn’t I right about the “Dammit, we’re here on vacation and we’re going to enjoy ourselves whether you like it or not!” attitudes? At least the kids won’t need post-DisneyWorld therapy later in life.]
Another great place for kids is Tom Sawyer Island. You ride a little raft over and there are caves and a fort. The kids and just run around and explore.
Plus you can make out in the caves.
If you need a break from the little ones (and filed for membership 2 years ago!), check out Club 33.
Um, malaka and Zebra, they’ve already returned from DisneyWorld.