While Walt Disney World is often thought of as a vacation destination for families with children, there’s also so much for adults to enjoy. Over the years, I’ve been able to experience Walt Disney World without kids, and have had the best time. Planning a trip to Walt Disney World for adults? here’s what you should consider doing.
I am a former member of the Disney Parks Moms Panel and have been on some complimentary press trips at Walt Disney World, but all opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links and a purchase/click through one of these links may result in a commission paid to us at no cost to you.
Walt Disney World For Adults
While this post is focusing on the attractions, hotels, and restaurants that are best for an adult-only trip to Walt Disney World, the entire property is great for adults. I’ve had just as much fun experiencing classic rides like it’s a small world, without kids.
This is especially true if you have fond memories of traveling to Disney World as a kid. So as you plan your trip, remember that planning a Walt Disney World adult trip doesn’t have to only include specific attractions. Do whatever you want to do, because Disney World is fun for people of all ages.
If you have young children, you may want to experience the Walt Disney World thrill rides that you don’t normally get to ride. In my opinion, the best rides for adults include these popular rides:
- Rock ‘n Roller Coaster
- Expedition Everest
- The Tower of Terror
- Space Mountain
- Avatar Flight of Passage
- Test Track
Disney World Tips for Adults
I’ll be honest. When I go to Walt Disney World without my kids, I do a lot less planning. The entire trip feels more relaxed, and I’m not stressed about making sure I get certain experiences. But, if you’ve got some attractions that I absolutely have to experience, make sure that make a plan, and consider purchasing Genie+. The single rider line can also be a great way to have a shorter wait – but only some of the rides offer this.
Walt Disney World is home to a number of popular special events throughout the year, like the Princess Half-Marathon, the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival, and the Epcot Festival of the Arts. If you are traveling for a race, you’ll want to register for the race as soon as registration opens. These races are extremely popular and book up very fast.
If you are considering a trip to Epcot for the Festival of the Arts, the Food and Wine Festival, or the Flower and Garden Festival, be sure to check out the festival schedules in advance. There are often different seminars that you can attend for an additional fee, but these typically have to be purchased early.
The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival is one of my favorite things to do and is usually the best part of my Disney vacation. I love trying the various foods, so I usually skip dinner plans and instead visit the festival.
When planning your adult Disney World Trip, you’ll probably want to start with your hotel reservation. All of the Walt Disney World resort hotels are kid friendly, so there are none that are specifically for adults. There are, however, a few properties that are great for adults.
I absolutely love Disney’s Contemporary Resort, because it’s so convenient to the Magic Kingdom. While kids may love the monorail running through the resort, it isn’t necessarily a kid-friendly theme. If you plan to spend a lot of time at the Magic Kingdom, or want to be near the California Grill, this is a good resort to consider.
As a convention hotel, Disney’s Coronado Springs tends to be a little more adult-focused. This resort also offers several different restaurants/bars. As a moderate resort, it tends to be one of the more affordable resorts.
Disney’s Boardwalk Inn
Because the Boardwalk has some fun adult bars and restaurants, the Boardwalk Inn can be a great hotel for adults. It’s also convenient to both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot.
Of the Beach Club and Yacht Club (my favorite resorts on Disney property), the Yacht Club is a little more adult-focused. Like the Boardwalk, this property is convenient to both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot. It’s especially convenient if you plan to dine in Epcot’s World Showcase because it’s a quick walk from the back entrance of Epcot.
These two sister resorts aren’t Disney properties, but they still offer a few Disney resort benefits. They don’t have the same type of theming as Disney resorts but are so convenient. Note that you won’t be able to take advantage of Disney’s Magical Express if you are staying here, so you’ll need to make other arrangements.
Disney’s Grand Floridian
Located adjacent to the Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Grand Floridian is definitely the most luxurious on property. It also is home to several fantastic restaurants, so it’s a great option for an adult Disney vacation.
Disney’s Riviera Resort
This new Disney DVC property is absolutely gorgeous. It’s also extremely convenient, as it’s located on the Disney Skyliner and within walking distance of Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort.
I prefer to skip the value resorts when visiting Walt Disney World as an adult. However, if you are on a budget, I think Pop Century would be the perfect place to stay. That way, you’ll have access to the Disney Skyliner.
Best Disney Park for Adults
In my opinion, all of the Disney parks are great for adults. Each park offers attractions and restaurants that adults will definitely enjoy. However, if you are looking for the best Disney Park for adults, Epcot would definitely be the best option.
As home to several festivals throughout the year, Epcot is a natural starting point for your planning. If you are interested in attending one of these festivals, you’ll want to plan your vacation around that.
The World Showcase in Epcot is a fun destination for adults because there are so many great places to eat and drink. When I travel to Walt Disney World with friends, we always spend a good amount of time drinking around the World Showcase, visiting all of the different countries. It’s always a great time.
It’s one of the best things to do – especially in the evenings. You’ll find a variety of different alcoholic beverages (and non-alcoholic beverages), but here are our favorite drinks at Epcot’s World Showcase.
- Grand Marnier Slush in France
- Avocado margarita at La Cava
- Beer in Germany
- Wine in France or Italy
- Mango Gingerita in China
Outside the Theme Parks
When planning your adult Walt Disney World vacation, you’ll want to include Disney Springs. This shopping, entertainment, live music, and restaurant complex offers free admission. Although you don’t have to do much planning, you may want to make restaurant reservations for any table service restaurants you want to dine at.
Disney Springs also offers fantastic shopping, including popular chain stores as well as shops offering exclusive Disney merchandise. I especially love the huge World of Disney shop in Disney Springs. If you’ve got free time, it’s always fun to walk around Disney Springs.
The Disney Boardwalk is also a fun place for adults to visit. This small entertainment and restaurant complex includes a dueling piano bar, a magic-themed cocktail lounge (AbracadaBAR), an ESPN Club, and several restaurants. It’s a nice destination after a day of theme parks.
There are other options for activities beyond the Disney theme parks, including golf courses, water parks, and miniature golf.
Best Disney Restaurants for Adults
There are delicious adult entrees at just about every restaurant at Walt Disney World. As you’d expect, most restaurants on Disney property are kid-friendly, with one exception. Disney’s Victoria and Albert’s Restaurant, a fine dining experience, is for those aged 10 and up. If you are looking to dine on delicious food in a more adult atmosphere, that’s your best option.
There are other great dining options as well. This isn’t at all an exhaustive list – but these are my favorite Disney restaurants for adults.
This restaurant located at the top of Disney’s Contemporary Resort offers fantastic views of the Grand Floridian and the Magic Kingdom. You’ll also find delicious food and a great wine menu. For a special occasion, make a reservation during the Magic Kingdom fireworks.
One of the newer restaurants at Disney Springs, the Boathouse offers delicious seafood in a gorgeous setting.
The Hollywood Brown Derby
Located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the Hollywood Brown Derby is always a must-visit for me. My favorite menu items include the Cobb salad and the Grapefruit Cake. For a more casual experience, dine outside on the patio.
Technically not a Disney restaurant, Il Mulino is located in the Walt Disney World Swan Hotel. This restaurant offers delicious Italian food in an elegant environment.
Jiko The Cooking Place
This signature dining location, located at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, offers fantastic food. My favorite entree is the Oak-grilled Filet Mignon – although you can’t go wrong with anything there.