Erin C. traveled from Canada to Walt Disney World with her 4-year-old son and 9-month-old daughter as a solo adult. She shares with Shannon how she navigated with two young children during their travels and four days in the parks. Listen until the end to hear several tips she learned and what she would change if she were to do the trip again.
Erin is traveling with her 4 year old son and 9.5 months old daughter.
This is Erin’s 8th trip total and 7th as an adult. It has been a few years and she’s used the WDW Prep to Go podcast as a resource.
This is Erin’s son’s second trip. He went for his first birthday. January of 2020 was their last trip. A lot has changed since then!
Erin decided to go as a last minute trip; she booked this trip about 2 months ago. Erin is still on maternity leave and had some flexibility. This trip is a surprise for her son.
They are staying in a standard room at Pop Century. She has a peanut allergy and loves photos – she will take every opportunity to have their photos taken. They have Memory Maker and scheduled a Capture Your Moment Photo Session.
Arrival (May 8)
Erin’s trip began the day prior driving from their home in Ontario to Buffalo to catch their flight. They had a hotel near the airport to make getting to their flight easier.
They have a very early flight leaving Buffalo at 8 a.m. They woke up very early that morning and drove to the airport at 5:45 a.m.
Erin brought her own stroller to make airport travel easier. She also used bungee cords to secure bags together to make it easier for transport.
Erin surprised her son with the trip. He hadn’t figured out that they were at the airport and was so excited that they were going to Disney!
They were the last ones off the plane by choice and Erin was delayed getting to baggage claim. She had missed some calls and texts from Cast and Crew to pick them up.
Erin requested a room in the 60s section to be closer to the pool and transportation. However, they didn’t get their request. They were in building 1 on the second floor. It was a very convenient walk to the main building.
Their room was ready when they arrived, which was great. Erin had packages sent to the hotel, so she picked those up. She also had a pack ‘n play delivered to the room as well as her grocery order.
They were on the bus to Disney Springs by 1:15 p.m. Their first stop at Disney Springs was to the Lego Store to make a Mini-Fig. It took a bit of time but it was really cute.
Their next stop was World of Disney and Erin found it overwhelming. There were so many options and they left the store without buying anything. Erin suggested that perhaps it’s a better store to go to later in the trip and not on the first day.
They checked in a little early for their 3:15 p.m. reservation at Homecomin’. They were seated at a bar-height table. It wasn’t crowded and Erin wasn’t sure why they sat us at the high table. It was very inconvenient.
The service at Homecomin’ was great, but the kids were very tired. Erin’s son ended up sleeping in his stroller while Erin ate the chicken and thought it was okay. Erin got her son’s food to go and he ate it in the stroller when he woke up.
They went to World of Memories to get the ear hats for the kids. Unfortunately they didn’t have infant hats, so it was a waste of a walk. They were very hot and tired so they went back to the resort.
Erin got them back to the resort and they took a quick swim before getting cleaned up for bed.
Animal Kingdom (May 9)
Erin woke up around 6:45 a.m. They didn’t get on the bus until 7:45 a.m. which is later than Erin hoped but they still were able to check-in for early entry just after 8:30 a.m.
They did Na’vi River Journey first and Erin says she’ll skip it in the future. The kids thought it was okay but that’s about it.
By 9:10 a.m. they waited just about 10 minutes for Kilimanjaro Safaris. Erin’s son was so excited about this and they loved it.
They got to the Festival of the Lion King at 9:55 a.m. for the 10 a.m. show. They got in right in time to get the front row, which was perfect for the kids!
They all really enjoyed the show and both kids really loved Simba. After the show, they walked over to Satu’li Canteen for lunch. She got a beef bowl and it is peanut-free, thank goodness. Erin says this was some of the best food she had the whole trip.
Around noon they went to Africa and got some photos. Erin’s son wasn’t being cooperative and she bought a bubble wand. This was a great idea.
They did the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail which was so fun. They got to see Grace the gorilla from the show on Animal Kingdom.
They went to Rafiki’s Planet Watch and this wasn’t a win. Erin thought there would be more animals outside but there weren’t many and it wasn’t very entertaining. Erin was there without the carrier and stroller, which made it a quick trip.
They took the train back and went to Asia. Erin’s son had his first Mickey Bar and then they went to see the 2:20 p.m. Finding Nemo The Musical show. They both loved it!
They went to Mickey and Minnie to meet them and on their way Erin found the Moana meet and greet! Sadly, they’d just closed her line, so they couldn’t meet her. They did meet Mickey and Minnie at 3:38 p.m. and the posted wait time was 25 minutes.
The kids were so shy when they met the characters but warmed up very quickly. At this point they made their way to the bus stop and were on the bus around 4:30 p.m. They waited a bit and were back to the resort food court by 5:30 p.m.
After dinner, they went for a swim around 6 p.m. In the pool Erin noticed that both kids got a bit too much sun that day. Erin looked for aloe and went to the gift shop to purchase aloe.
This was the end of their day and they all went to bed.
Magic Kingdom (May 10)
Erin woke up at 6 a.m. to purchase Genie+ (it was $18) and they got ready for a big day! They were walking down Main Street by 8:35 a.m.
Erin’s son was so excited to see the castle. They took photos and explored Main Street. At 9 a.m. Erin purchased ear hats for the children and had them embroidered at Town Square.
At this time, Erin made a Lightning Lane to meet Mickey for later in the day. They checked in for their Capture Your Moment Photo Session at 9:45 a.m. She will get ears for her kids and for a child she lost to create a special picture.
Unfortunately Erin did not have the best experience. They had one photographer and it made it difficult with a 4 year old and a baby. Erin had hoped to get a special photo of the children with a hat to remember a baby lost.
The whole experience with three locations was 20 minutes. This included all of the traveling, in and out of the stroller, and Erin only got about 8 decent photos for $100.
After photos, they went to Fantasy Land to ride some rides, but the baby fell asleep. They waited for her to wake up. While they waited, Erin got a lightning lane for Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh and an Individual Lightning Lane for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.
They went on the Mad Tea Party and there wasn’t a line, so they were able to do it two times in a row. By then it was time for them to check in for their lunch reservation at Tony’s Town Square at 11:25 a.m.
Erin requested a table outside and this was noted when they checked in. However, when they were called to be seated, they were seated inside. Erin told the waitress and asked to be seated outside. They waited in the middle of the restaurant for the waitress to get that figured out.
They were seated outside and were told that it might take a bit longer, which was fine. It was a wonderful way to watch the Festival of Fantasy parade with lunch. The food was good but the view was great.
At 12:40 p.m. they went over for their lightning lane to meet Mickey in Town Square. They did not have a photopass photographer, it was just a box taking photos. It was this way at most of the character meets, which Erin notes as a negative.
After meeting Mickey there was no wait to meet Snow White and it was lovely. The train came by at the train station and they waved to the train, which was very cute.
They have some friends that will join them in the afternoon. They will be able to do some rides together and then Erin can do some rides with her older son. This family is very special to Erin and her family, so it was great to be able to spend time with them.
Around 2:25 p.m. they met their friends at Seven Dwarfs Mine Train so that Erin and her son could ride. It was wonderful to spend time together. They also had individual lightning lanes for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train so they were able to ride that together.
They took a break at Cosmic Ray’s to get out of the heat. It was in the high 80s and Erin was really feeling the heat.
While her friends watched the baby, Erin was able to take her son on Tomorrowland Speedway. Erin doesn’t like this at all, but her son loved it!
They went back to Cosmic Ray’s and ordered dinner. They took a nice long break. While they were there they made a lightning lane to meet Cinderella later in the day. At this point, Erin realized her phone was dying. She was able to get a cord for her travel charger at guest services later in the evening.
Around 7 p.m. they did the Prince Charming Regal Carrousel. There was no wait for this. They waited about 15-20 minutes to meet Cinderella even with the lightning lane. It was lovely.
Around 8 p.m. they got a spot on the curb for the fireworks. They were on Main Street near Casey’s Corner. Waiting for the fireworks was challenging because the kids were pretty well done with the day.
They really enjoyed the fireworks. Erin had noise-canceling headphones for both children and they enjoyed it. After the fireworks, Erin just stayed where they were to let the people clear out.
The children were both asleep and she called a Minnie Van. Their driver was Sean and it was lovely. They got back to the resort very late and Erin wasn’t in bed before 1 a.m.
Epcot (May 11)
Erin woke up at 7 a.m. and purchased Genie+, an Individual Lightning Lane for Remy’s Ratatoille Adventure. Everyone was tired, so the priority was to do a couple of rides, have a snack, and get back to the resort to swim and rest.
They loved the rides so they went right to the Seas with Nemo and Friends. The kids LOVED it. They did Turtle Talk with Crush and Erin’s son was chosen but rather than ask a question, he just told Crush that he also goes to the beach.
Next they went over to Remy’s Ratatoille Adventure and the standby wait was at least 75 minutes. They walked right on with their Individual Lightning Lane without a wait. Erin loved this ride, but it wasn’t her son’s favorite.
Erin also was able to make a lightning lane for Frozen Ever After but not until much later in the afternoon. Thankfully she was able to modify it to 12:30 p.m.
They escaped the heat and watched the Beauty and the Beast Sing-a-long for a bit. Her son wasn’t into it, so they left to go meet Mary Poppins. Erin loves Mary Poppins and this was her favorite character interaction of the entire trip.
Ashley was Mary Poppins’ character handler and was delightful. She took video and photos of the entire interaction.
They went to Frozen Ever After next and her son loved it. They did some photopass photos after that and got some great photos. Erin checked the app to see how long the wait was to meet Ana and Elsa. It said 30 minutes but there wasn’t a line, so they didn’t hardly wait at all!
While her son ate a Mickey Bar, Erin looked over the food booth lists. The ones she wanted to try were over by Test Track and they weren’t going to walk over there. Erin got nachos and a margarita in Mexico.
After this, Erin took the Skyliner. She was able to use the accessible line. There wasn’t anyone waiting but it was incredibly helpful to have a bit more time and space to get on the skyliner.
They got back to the resort and had a swim before taking time to rest. They all needed a rest and Erin decided that they would just go back to Epcot for dinner and not worry about anything else.
They got on the skyliner around 5:10 p.m. for their 5:30 p.m. Teppan Edo reservation. They arrived and Erin’s daughter was napping so they allowed her to bring the stroller into the restaurant to allow her to sleep.
Erin didn’t think the food was as good this time as previous trips. Erin says she regrets not canceling the meal. They did get some good photos on their way back to the skyliner. The skyliner was closed even though it wasn’t raining.
She was told at the Skyliner that it would be back up quickly but they couldn’t give a time. Eventually she found out that there was a shuttle bus from near the skyliner, which was so convenient.
They got back to their resort and went straight to bed!
Magic Kingdom (May 12)
Erin’s priority today was to get to Magic Kingdom for Early Entry and ride as much as they could.
Right after they arrived, they went to Peter Pan’s Flight and the wait was too long, so they went to Journey Under the Sea. Her son was a little scared but Erin gave him a glow stick and that helped incredibly.
After that, they wanted to meet more princesses so they waited about 20 minutes to meet Tiana and Rapunzel. After that they walked on it’s a small world. Then they were able to use their lightning lane for Peter Pan’s Flight.
After that they had a snack and Erin mobile ordered from Friar’s Nook. They enjoyed the lemonade but Erin does not recommend the donuts.
They went over to the other side of Fantasyland and got on the train. They rode it all around the park and loved it.
When they were done they went over to Haunted Mansion. Erin told her son that it was called The Mansion and it was just silly ghosts.
Erin used the glow sticks again for Haunted Mansion. It really helped her son not be scared on the ride. Their next stop was Main Street. They did some shopping and stopped to get silhouettes.
They went straight out of the park and got on a bus to their resort for a late food court lunch. It was close to 2 p.m. before they left, so they got back a little later than intended.
By 4:40 p.m. they were headed back to the Magic Kingdom. They got some photos taken on the way in as well. Erin had a lightning lane for Pirates of the Caribbean.
She got spring rolls on their way to Pirates of the Caribbean. They had no wait for Pirates and Erin’s son wasn’t the biggest fan. Erin highly recommends the spring rolls.
They waited about 20 minutes to ride Magic Carpets of Aladdin, which was fine because it’s something that Erin’s son could do.
After eating their ice cream they went to Jungle Cruise. Erin made a lightning lane for Enchanted Tales with Belle before going over to Dumbo. Erin took some photos over there and they ran around a bit.
On the way to use their lightning lane at 8:30 p.m. for Enchanted Tales with Belle, Erin’s son wanted to see Cinderella again. They were able to meet her after only waiting about 15 minutes and got some great photos!
Then they got photopass pictures at 8:50 p.m. in the photo studio behind the castle before the fireworks. They watched the fireworks near the Mad Tea Party. It wasn’t a terrible spot but it wasn’t the best.
After the fireworks Erin gave her son the choice of one more ride. He chose Mad Tea Party which was great because there was no line.
On their way out, they got some more photos taken before heading out of the park. Her son was still awake so Erin opted to take a bus back to the resort.
Once the kids went to bed, Erin packed up their room to prepare for their departure.
Departure (May 13)
After breakfast at the food court, they got ready for their Sunshine Flyer pickup at 9 a.m. They had several tops before going to MCO and the bus had an accident at one of the gates. It smashed the bus mirrors so they couldn’t take that bus anymore.
They transferred to another bus and got to the airport. The flight home was a bit rough, but they got home safely.
- Shannon called the Lego Store at Disney Springs and was told that you could make a reservation 90 days out. Erin didn’t have any issue walking up and making a mini fig.
- Purchase glow sticks before you arrive to give kids on dark rides. Get bubble solution to refill bubble wands.
- Ultimate Guide for visiting Disney World with Toddlers
- Walt Disney World Crowd Calendar
- 7 Step Disney World Planning Process
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