When I think of my childhood, the first thing that always comes to my mind is taking trips to Disney World with my family. The first time I went to Disney World I had just turned three years old and my little sister was one. Since then, my family has grown and changed in many ways, but our love for Disney has remained the same. I have gained so many wonderfully magical memories throughout the years and I wanted to share a few of my favorites in hopes that it will encourage you to reminisce on your own memories made at Walt Disney Parks as well as invite anyone who has not yet been to Disney, to join in the magic and plan your first trip.
I don’t remember much of course from my very first trip to Disney; however, I think it is safe to say that my family loved it considering we have gone back almost every year since then (I am twenty years old now, so I’ll let you do the math). No matter how many times I go, when I walk into Magic Kingdom I always feel like I am experiencing it all for the very first time. Disney has a way of making you feel like you have just entered into a different world as soon as you step foot into their parks. The sweet aroma of the delicious baked goods, the happy music playing all around you, and a view that is unlike any other, all have a sense of nostalgia attached to it, so even as an adult, I still feel like a kid when I walk through the gates of the parks. So what is it that keeps my family and so many others coming back to Disney? It’s a simple answer really: because there is no other place like it.
As promised, I will share a few of my most cherished memories at both Disney World and Disneyland. The first memory that pops into my head is quite comical to say the least. It was, what felt like the hottest day of the year, and we were spending it at Magic Kingdom with thousands of other people. As much as I hate to admit it, I was a bit cranky due to the extremely hot temperatures and all I wanted to do was sit down, so I did just that, but when I did, I sat right in a puddle of ice cream. One might think that this would have only further upset me, but it did the complete opposite. My family and I busted out laughing because really that’s all you can do in that situation. It really is impossible to be in a bad mood when you’re at the happiest place on earth.
Watching the various shows that Disney puts on throughout the park is easily one of my favorite things to do and each show holds a different memory. One of my favorite shows at Disney is Fantasmic at Hollywood Studios. Every time we go to Disney, this is a must do for us because my family knows how much I love it. It never gets old no matter how many times I see it. I love the music, the excitement, the triumph of good over evil; there’s really nothing I don’t love about it. I have so many memories of watching Fantasmic with my family and it is something I truly do look forward to every time we go. Along with Fantasmic, the fireworks show Wishes is another show that is packed with memories. There will always be this image painted in my mind of my little sister, who would have been about 5 at the time, sitting on My Dad’s shoulders in her Sleeping Beauty dress, watching the show intently and in amazement.
The bus rides to and from the parks hold a lot of memories for me as well. My family has stayed at a range of resorts and hotels on Disney property including: Pop Century, Art of Animations, Disney’s All-Star Resorts, Port Orleans, and the most recent being Coronado Springs. I love staying on Disney property because it makes the whole experience all the more magical. The bus rides to the parks in the morning are always so exciting because you can just feel the happiness radiating from everyone. The bus rides back, even when everyone is tired, still have that same exciting feeling. I love staying at a Disney Resort or Hotel when we go because they always go above and beyond to make your trip as amazing as possible and not to mention each place has a cafeteria area where you can use your Disney Dining Plan if you have one (which I highly recommend getting). The food is always great and the Mickey Mouse Waffles are a classic that you can’t miss.
Speaking of food, another favorite memory of mine is getting a Pineapple Dole whip with my Mom every single time we go to Disney. That is our favorite treat at Disney World and we never leave the parks without one. In continuing with the topic of food, I can also remember a time at Disneyland in California when all my sister wanted was this ice cream Sunday called the Kitchen Sink and the name is exactly what you think. It had everything PLUS the kitchen sink because it did in fact come served in a bowl that looked like a kitchen sink. We sat laughing while she tried to eat the whole thing, and just enjoyed our time together. Often times we are too consumed with the craziness of every day life to really appreciate moments like this and that is why it truly is the small things like this that make Disney so magical for my family and I.
I have now shared with you a few of my favorite memories throughout my many years of going to Walt Disney Parks and Resorts with my family. I could share more, but we would be here all day so I will leave it at this. You are never too old for Disney. Go and make memories whether it’s your first time going or your 100th time going. My youngest sister is eight years old and she makes me feel like I’m her age again. Watching her eyes sparkle when she sees Cinderella’s Castle makes me think about all of the times I, myself, felt like a Princess. You see, for me, Disney isn’t about the food or the rides, that’s just a plus, it’s about getting to spend quality time with my family and making memories that I will cherish forever.