Why You Don’t Need to Bring Kids on a Walt Disney World Vacation

Conventional wisdom holds that Walt Disney World is for kids. And this is true – I’ve never met a child who didn’t dream of visiting the most magical place on Earth! But it’s certainly not true that Walt Disney World is ONLY for kids.

Adults enjoy a WDW vacation every bit as much as children, just sometimes in different ways. And in fact, Walt Disney’s goal was to make adults feel like children in the Theme Parks – after all, we’re all kids at heart!

Adult Guests have the option of enjoying both kid-friendly and adult-friendly activities on the property, so there’s technically even more for adults to see and do at WDW than children. In case you need a reminder, here are some key reasons you’ll be perfectly happy heading to Walt Disney World without kids.

Adulting Around Disney Springs

Disney Springs, Walt Disney World’s shopping, dining, and entertainment complex, has something for everyone, and you could spend your entire vacation right here and still not see, hear, do and eat everything it has to offer. After dark, there are plenty of restaurants, lounges, bars, and clubs with decidedly adult vibes for big kids to enjoy.  

Sample some adult entertainment (aerialists, stilt walkers, contortionists, and burlesque dancers) at the Gothic industrial-themed Edison, which has a minimum age requirement of 21 after 10:00 pm. Enjoy your favorite band, along with a few drinks at House of Blues. Order a clandestine cocktail at the speakeasy Enzo’s Hideaway. Or put on your dancing shoes and cha cha over to Paradiso 37, where you can dance the night away.

Enjoying a Resort Day

I’m a big advocate for setting aside a Resort day during your WDW vacation. There’s so much to do at every Disney Resort Hotel – especially if you’ve paid the big bucks for a Disney Deluxe Resort or Deluxe Villa Resort – that it’s well worth taking a day off from the Parks to enjoy it all! However, this can be a tough sell with kids.  

Luckily, travel without little ones. You’ll be free to indulge in a day lounging about the pool, taking an art class, or even learning a new skill like horseback riding or archery, without little voices begging to go to Magic Kingdom all day. It can be refreshing to take a break from the chaos of the Theme Parks, so slowing down a bit with a Resort day is a great way to recharge your batteries.

Gourmet Dining

There aren’t many restaurants at Walt Disney World with age restrictions, aside from the magnificent Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, which has yet to reopen. But just because kids can dine at most WDW restaurants doesn’t mean they’ll want to!

If you’re looking to expand your culinary horizons beyond mac and cheese and chicken fingers, Walt Disney World is full of fine dining experiences and gourmet restaurants that boast dishes from all over the world.  

Animal Kingdom’s Tiffins Restaurant, Magic Kingdom’s Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen, Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs, Yachtsman Steakhouse at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort and Sanaa at Kidani Village at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas are just a few table service restaurants with menus and atmospheres that are geared towards adult tastes.

Shop ’Til You Drop

Sure, you can go shopping in Walt Disney World with kids, but how quickly will they get bored? On an adults-only vacation, you can shop to your heart’s content (and even find the perfect gift to bring back for any little ones you left at home).

Disney Springs is shopping central, and it offers the largest Disney store on the planet (World of Disney). But don’t stop there!

Take some time to explore the specialty merchandise at each Park, too. Each of EPCOT’s pavilions offers country-specific merchandise that you’ll have a hard time finding anywhere else in the USA. And Magic Kingdom’s Memento Mori shop is a must for any fan of the attraction Haunted Mansion!

Adulting Around EPCOT’s World Showcase

When I visited Disney’s EPCOT for the very first time as a 14-year-old on a school trip, I was immediately hooked. Travel around the world, all without leaving Disney World? Yes, please!! Unfortunately, the other 14-year-olds I was traveling had zero interest in visiting EPCOT’s 11 countries, leaving me to explore solo.

While many kids (like me) will enjoy the global food, architecture, entertainment, and shopping offered by EPCOT’s World Showcase, and the Park has upped the allure for young ones by adding Kidcot Fun Stops and Frozen Ever After, the fact remains that kids will likely get bored with the international pavilions way before you will. Traveling to Disney’s EPCOT Theme Park without kids will allow you to explore every country fully – and of course, eat and drink around the world! 

Bottom Line

Look around the next time you’re in line for an attraction at Walt Disney World, and you’ll be surprised how many adults you see without kids. And there’s absolutely no shame in that!  

While there are certain experiences on property that are adults-only, there are almost none children-only, so as an adult, you get the best of both worlds. Reconnect with your inner child while flying through the sky on Dumbo the Flying Elephant during the day, and check out the nightlife at Disney Springs by night – it’s up to you!

Of course, if you’re bringing children along on your WDW vacation, you’ll be in great company. But if you’re an adult of any age without rug rats or even a parent craving some alone time at WDW away from the kids, rest assured that you will have a blast at Disney World without the little ones!

About Stacy Milford

Stacy has lived in 4 countries on 3 continents, and travels whenever humanly possible. Passionate about music theatre, dessert, and adventure in the great wide somewhere, she visits Walt Disney World every year, usually during Halloween! Stacy currently divides her time between writing and teaching English as a second language to children in China, and is pretty sure growing up is over-rated.