Can you spend just one day at Disney World and have fun? Yes! It’s entirely possible to spend one day at Disney World and have loads of fun! There are some awesome ways to have a great time, while you spend one day at Disney World! Check out our tips for spending just one day at Disney World in Orlando to make it the best one day Disney trip ever!
Spending One Day At Disney World
Normally when we take a trip to Disney World we go for 4 to 5 days. This past December we were in Orlando and had tickets in our Disney accounts for 1 day so we figured why not have some fun and do one day at the Disney Parks in between our trip to Universal Studios.
It was quite the adventure, but it was totally worth it and so much fun! If you find yourself with just one day to spend at the Disney Parks in Orlando go for it. Make the best of the time you do have and make those memories.
There are a few tips that will make spending one day at Disney World easier and will keep the fun going all day long.
For our One Day at Disney Parks we started our day at Hollywood Studios and then park jumped over to Magic Kingdom for the rest of our day.
Is it Worth Going to Disney World for just one day?
We say Yes! We love going to Disney World and even if we only have just one day to enjoy it we say it is worth it!
What Can you do in One Day at Disney?
There is a lot that you can do in One day at Disney World. We spent 11 hours in the parks and according to everyone’s health app on the Iphone we clocked over 22,000 steps that day. Was it worth it? All of the kids say it was totally worth it and I agree. Would we do it again? Probably not while we still have one kiddo who is younger, but when she is a bit older (she was 6 at the time) I would for sure do it again.
To start the day, we had breakfast in our hotel room. We enjoyed lunch at the Docking Bay 7 in Galaxy’s Edge, and mobile ordered while walking so it was ready when we arrived.
We had dinner at Cosmic Rays and had plenty of time to stop for some snacks every time we got the Disney treat urge.
While at Magic Kingdom we grabbed a spot for photos with Cinderella and Elena in between our rides.
Rides we rode at Hollywood Studios:
- Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Train
- Millenium Falcon: Smugglers Run
- Rise of the Resistance
- Star Tours
- Toy Story Mania
Rides we Rode at Magic Kingdom:
- Big thunder railroad
- Space Mountain
- Winnie the Pooh
- 7 dwarfs mine train
- Buzz Lightyear
- It’s a small world
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Speedway race track
Tips for Spending One Day At Disney World
When you are planning on spending just one day at the Disney World Orlando Parks then you will want to use these tips to make it so you have the best day ever.
Make a Plan
There are so many things to see and do at Walt Disney World, it’s super easy to lose track of time while exploring the parks. So, it’s best to decide on a few attractions and experiences you don’t want to miss and use the list to create a schedule of the things you want to do while there.
I suggest picking 2 parks to visit that day and starting the day at the park that opens up earliest and then ending the day at the park that closes the latest. For us that was starting the day at Hollywood Studios and staying until lunchtime and then park hopping to Magic Kingdom for the afternoon and evening.
Make sure before you go that you have downloaded the My Disney Experience app. You will also want to purchase and activate your tickets before hand so you are good to go when you get to the park.
Pick which of the parks you want to spend the day in, you can also spend the full day in one park if you want to, the important thing is to plan which parks you will be in. From there make a list of your must-do rides and attractions.
Go to Magic Kingdom
If this is your first trip to Disney World then I highly suggest going to Magic Kindgom and spending the full day there. There is so much to do and see in just that one park that it will give you a magical one day at Disney experience that everyone remembers forever as their first trip.
Start the Day Early
You will want to be there when the parks open and the name for that is being there at rope drop.
Rope drop is the term used to describe the time Walt Disney World parks open, even when an actual rope isn’t used to mark the park as still being closed. If you want as much park time as possible, plan to be at the entrance of one of the parks at this specific time.
The parks also tend to be a bit less busy early in the morning, so you may be able to beat the crowds to some of the more popular attractions.
Plan to End the Day Late
It is going to be a long day and you should plan for that. Knowing in advance that you will be at the parks late and by the time you get to the hotel at the end of the night I promise everyone will be both happy and tired at the same time.
Use Genie +
You are going to want to get on the rides that you can more spur of the moment so using Genie+ to grab line reservations and also see what rides have short ride times will make it easier to get on many rides.
Using Genie+ to grab ride spots as we saw them pop up and getting rides selected in the morning when we got to the park made it so we were able to ride everything that we wanted.
Skip making Dining Reservations
Dining reservations will hold you to a time schedule and if you are seeing things you want to ride show up on the Disney app you don’t want to have to worry about a dining reservation at that time. Also, dining reservation meals tend to take a lot longer than a quick service.
If your goal is to ride as many rides and do as many things as you can then you will want to keep your day having as much flexibility as possible.
The only exception to this would be booking a morning breakfast super early before the parks open. Then you have breakfast covered and
Avoid Eating at Peak Times
When you want to get on rides and a lot of them the best thing to do is ride them during peak meal times. I have always found the ride wait times to be super short when everyone is eating during traditional meal times. We have a late lunch at 2-3 and during the normal noon-2 time that people are having lunch get on rides that normally have really long wait times. The same goes for dinner, we tend to eat dinner between 7pm and 8pm and during the 4-6pm time frame get on rides.
A One day in the parks trip is not the day to get into fancy outfits. Stick to shorts, a t-shirt and sneakers. We always wear Disney themed shirts when we go to Disney and make sure that the shoes we are wearing are comfortable. You will be doing a lot of walking so you want to make sure you are comfortable.
Bring the Essentials
Pack your backpack up with sunscreen, a rain poncho, a phone charging cord and brick, and a water bottle. You might also want to include snacks in your backpack as well for the middle of the day hunger, but I always find that grabbing a popcorn or a dole whip is what makes the kids and I happiest when we want at snack when at the parks.
Don’t go during peak seasons
If you are wanting to get the most out of your day then I suggest going at times the parks are slower. when we went it was the second week of December and the crowds were almost nonexistent. We have also gone the first week of May and that time frame has always been low crowds as well.
Yes, you are going to want to go in with a plan, but keep in mind that unexpected things can happen, like ride closures or inclement weather. Have a backup plan in case your original plans fall through.
Disney World Trip Planning Tips
- How to Use Disney Transportation. The transportation at Disney is amazing and makes getting to the parks and resorts so easy.
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- Best Disney Hotels for Families. Going to Disney with the family? Check out these resorts that are perfect for families going to Disney World.
- How to Ride More Rides at Disney World. Want to ride the most rides while at Disney? Be sure you check out these tips!
- Weeklong Disney World Vacation Tips.Making your Disney World Trip a week-long adventure? Be sure to check out these Disney vacation planning tips!
- Bippity Boppity Boutique. Everything you need to know about the Princess (and Prince Disney World Makeovers)
- Disney free stuff.Everything you can score for free at Disney World – and so many of them are AWESOME!
- Tips for Doing Disney World in the Rain! Don’t let a little rain get in the way of your fun! You can still have an amazing time even when it is raining at Disney World!
Things to do in Orlando with Kids
If you are planning a trip to Orlando Be sure to check out all the other fun you can have!