Thinking you want an adult Disney trip and getting shamed by bores claiming Disney is for kids? Ignore the bores. You be you. Disney is packed with adult fun. Here is your guide to the best Disney World park for adults.
It still surprises me when people say Disney is just for kids. I’ve seen pretty hateful things said about adults who love Disney. They sadden me. The thing they need most, and they have some ill will towards it. It truly sucks to be them.
This is about you, though. You’re thinking, “Disney sure does look fun, but I’m not a kid anymore.” Disney offers fun for every age group.
2 Important Things to Keep in Mind
First of all, Disney offers an abundance of fun adult things to do. You can be as adult as you want to be at Disney. Secondly, and most importantly, Disney is a great place to release your inner child.
Jump to your favorite park:
Disney Has Plenty of Fun for Adults
Disney offers some of the best things to do for date night. Date nights should be fun, and at Disney, you’ll find the perfect mixture of fine dining and fun dining.
There are several ways for adults to have a fantastic time at Disney!
- Explore the abundant activities and entertainment at Disney Springs.
- Relax and have a great time at your Disney resort.
- Enjoy adult fun at the Walt Disney World theme parks.
One of my favorite Disney memories is enjoying drinks with friends from my travel agency. We drank whiskey and solved the world’s problems. It wasn’t a meeting, and we had no agenda. We were just four dudes hanging out. I’m pretty sure it was even on a Thursday.
Disney is a Great Place to Release Your Inner Child
You may have reasons that you think you don’t want to do that. If so, I’d love to hear them. There is new evidence to support that play is highly beneficial for adults.
How Do You Pick the Best Disney World Park for Adults?
As I said, it’s all about what you enjoy. This is one reason to always book with a travel advisor. We can help transform a standardized vacation into a personalized experience that fits the types of experiences you want.
I’ll give you the options for great attractions, dining, and adult beverages for each park, resort, and restaurant.
Adult Fun at Your Walt Disney World Resort
You can also enjoy plenty of adult time at many of the Disney resorts. They call them resorts because any of them would be a wonderful, complete vacation even if you didn’t venture off into the theme parks.
A few of the best resorts for adults are:
- Beach Club
- Yacht Club
- Grand Floridian
- Animal Kingdom Lodge
The Monorail Bar Crawl
While not an official Disney activity, you’ll likely make several new friends completing the Monorail Bar Crawl. To make this crawl, you hit each bar on the monorail route by taking the monorail. At each bar, you enjoy a beverage, meal, or snack.
Adults Can Have Fun at Disney Springs
If you’re not convinced that adults can have fun at Disney, then I offer you Disney Springs. Disney Springs is a great option for date night or a night out with friends. You can even visit if you’re not staying in a Disney resort or visiting the theme parks.
Disney Springs offers 62 bars and restaurants, tons of shopping, and live entertainment.
My favorite bar is Raglan Road. It’s got a great Irish Pub vibe, and the Bush-Tail Nitro is fantastic. They even have gluten-free fish and chips!
Although I would suggest that one should smoke cigars to be an adult, Sosa Family Cigar is not likely a place you’d take the kids!
Adults’ Guide to the Disney Parks
It’s probably a little easier to believe that Disney Springs or your Disney resort will have plenty of adult things to do. There is plenty of adult fun to be had at the Disney theme parks too!
Disney has four theme parks and two water parks to choose from. The best Disney World park for adults will be up to each person, so let’s discover the best park for you.
Best Magic Kingdom Attractions for Adults
Magic Kingdom is the classic park themed mostly on the princess characters and movies and the fab five.
Wait. Let’s make sure we cover some Disney 101 here. Who are the Fab Five? They are the original, iconic Disney characters.
- Mickey Mouse
- Minnie Mouse
- Donald Duck
One might assume that this makes Magic Kingdom the least likely to be the best Disney World park for adults. I’d have a hard time arguing against that. It is the park that offers the least opportunity to enjoy alcoholic beverages.
However, Magic Kingdom is the favorite park of most Disney-loving adults I know. It is the park where you will–shall we say–encounter the largest number of young children. Enjoy the fun of seeing how behaved their parents are!
This has more to do with memories and the freeing of their (our) inner child than it does with the availability of grown-up fun at the park. Fun is fun, rides are rides, and Magic Kingdom offers some of the best classic rides.
How about a quick look at some Magic Kingdom Rides?
Don’t mind if I do!
How much you enjoy rides and which one you like best will depend on your definition of adult.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
I’ll start with my favorite, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. I wouldn’t quite consider it one of the thrill rides. It is still fast and fun with plenty of excitement.
What I like best about 7-D (all the cool kids call it that [nobody calls it that]) is how smooth it is. Being 50 years old, I don’t enjoy the level beating that I did when I played ice hockey and practiced Tae Kwon Do in my younger days.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is smooth as butter. You get to enjoy the (almost) thrills without needing a chiropractor. 7D (nobody calls it that) is adult safe!
Space Mountain is probably the most thrilling ride at the parks. The theming is fun. It feels like you’re blasting off into and through space.
It’s a little rough for me, though. Either it could use a freshening up, or I need to do more yoga.
What intrigues me most about these rides is that they’re classic, iconic. For that, Splash Mountain is a favorite among Disney fanatics. I love it too.
If you get fewer feels from the Disney classics, I will tell you this. Splash Mountain is a well-themed fun flume ride.
Granted, I’m partial. I want to live in a flume city where water flumes are the primary means of transportation. It is a great way to enjoy some music, have a little fun, get a little wet, and not need a neck massage after.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
BTMR is less thrilling than Space Mountain and less smooth than Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. (Are you relieved I didn’t call it 7D?)
It is fun if you want to enjoy a fun ride with some with a few bumps but not likely any bruises.
If I had to pick a single, must-do ride for me, Haunted Mansion is it. I think it’s genius how the Imagineers could make a haunted house kid-friendly without being too cheesy. Keep in mind that how much you enjoy the humor will depend on your tolerance for Dad jokes.
Despite its ghostly theme, it’s not a thrill ride. Still, the special effects are amazing, and it’s a great place to get out of the Florida heat.
Small World is one of the classic, iconic rides that no Disney fan can get enough of. If you’re considering an adult-only trip, either your first Disney trip or your first Disney trip without the kids, here is an Adult’s Guide to It’s a Small World:
You can check off the ride on the list of rides every Disney fan should ride. You’ll be able to speak from personal experience when you and your Disney friends discuss it.
[Speaking of Disney friends, don’t tell mine that I’ve said what I’m about to say.]
Mostly, It’s a Small World is one of the best rides for listening to an annoying song over and over while getting creeped out by dancing, animatronic children from all around the world.
There. I said it.
If you’re into cutesy, happy, dancing things, maybe you’ll enjoy it. Likewise, if you’re brimming with Disney nostalgia, don’t miss It’s a Small World. Having said that, I think that everyone should experience it at least once.
Magic Kingdom Dining
As far as adult beverages go, you’ll only find beer and wine (none of the hard stuff) in Magic Kingdom. Additionally, you’ll only find adult beverages at the table dining restaurants.
I think the most notable is Cinderella’s Royal Table, which offers the unique experience of the restaurant being inside the castle.
Another notable Magic Kingdom table service restaurant for more sophisticated palettes is Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd., Skipper Canteen. Since it’s based on the Jungle Cruise ride, it offers a unique blend of African, Asian, and Latin cuisines.
Is Magic Kingdom the Best Disney World Park for Adults?
For your first trip to Disney, it is definitely worth the trip. If you’re a huge fan of the classics and princesses, Magic Kingdom is worth the trip.
Magic Kingdom is easily my favorite park. It is truly a magical place.
If you’ll likely enjoy the more contemporary stories and characters more, you’ll likely enjoy the other parks more. Likewise, if you’d like easier access to more adult beverages during your day at the park, Magic Kingdom won’t be the best Disney park for you.
The Best Things for Adults at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
This ride is a great option if you’ll enjoy seeing animals in a (mostly) natural habitat. It’s way better than a zoo. The animals are out doing…animal things. You’re the one in the cage, the safari truck.
Avatar Flight of Passage
FOP (Now you know the hip acronym!) is one of the most popular attractions, if not the most popular attractions, in Animal Kingdom. It features spectacular flight simulation. However, if you’re prone to motion sickness, don’t have the adult beverages before this one.
Another great Disney roller coaster, Expedition: Everest, delights with its marvelously detailed queue. You’ll pass through the Expedition tour company office and the Yeti museum.
Before Universal’s Hagrid rollercoaster, Expedition Everest was the most expensive roller coaster ever built.
Even though you can take advantage of a single rider line for Expedition: Everest, you should enjoy the queue at least once.
Animal Kingdom Dining
While the theme park attraction part of Animal Kingdom ranks it lower in the Best Disney World park for adults list, its dining options are another story.
Yak and Yeti is probably the quietest restaurant in the Disney World parks. Tiffins, one of Disney’s signature dining restaurants, is a little on the pricey side and caters more to adults.
Nomad Lounge is one of the best bars in all of Walt Disney World. Nomad lounge offers various appetizers and typically has few kids.
Is Animal Kingdom the Best Disney World Park for Adults?
I think it ranks 3rd in attracting and ties for 2nd with dining.
The Best Attractions for Adults at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios is themed with more contemporary stories and characters. Furthermore, Hollywood Studios is home to one of the most spectacular immersive rides in the country! Rise of the Resistance resides in Hollywood Studios Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Regardless of your age, if you’re an adult, you need to visit Batuu, immerse yourself in this spaceport, and experience Rise of the Resistance. Just as I tell my clients and friends, take a tissue. You will get misty when you see the Millennium Falcon.
Rise of the Resistance
While not at all a thrill ride, Rise of the Resistance is a fantastic experience. You are dropped right into the story. And while you technically never leave the ground, you take a pretty wild ride into space.
I’d like to offer you a word of advice about Rise of the Resistance. Although you’ll find a few on my Instagram feed, you’ll notice there are no photos of the ride here. That is on purpose!
Don’t watch any of those point-of-view videos online. You want to experience this first hand for yourself. While the attraction hosts a few of the best places for a photo op, they don’t do the experience justice. I know you’ve seen these pictures. You need to live the experience for yourself.
Hollywood Studios is also the home of Toy Story Land. This land includes Toy Story Mania, Alien Swirl Saucers, and Slinky Dog Dash.
Slinky Dog Dash
Don’t let Slinky Dog’s cuteness fool you. Slinky Dog Dash is a legitimately fun roller coaster. It’s also nice and smooth. All the fun, none of the bangs and bruises.
Minnie’s Runaway Railway
This is a fun ride. It’s cute. The immersion and special effects are good. While I think everyone should experience it at least once, I don’t think that there are many other rides you should ride first.
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster is my favorite Disney ride. Yes, Rise of the Resistance is great, but I love roller coasters. It’s speedy, full of thrills, and very smooth. No jerks or bumps at all.
Best of all, you get to listen to adult music! I’m not into pop. I love rock, and the music of Aerosmith pairs well with the thrills this ride provides.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Most kids won’t fully appreciate the Tower of Terror’s Twilight Zone theme. We, adults, do, though. I’ve ridden a few of these freefall-type rides in my day. This one adds several fun twists. As Disney often does, the Plus Up this freefall ride.
It’s not a jerky as most other rides. You’ll appreciate the Twilight Zone theme, the fun of the thrills, and Tower of Terror’s silky smoothness.
Hollywood Studios Dining
Many hail the 50’s Prime Time Cafe as one of the best for adults. I can see that being the case if you love 50’s nostalgia or if you’ll get a kick out of purposely rude staff. I did quite enjoy them.
Since it is another signature dining experience, The Hollywood Brown Derby is another great option for adults.
You’ll definitely want to make dining reservations as early as you can (60 days before your trip) for either of these restaurants.
The same is true for Sci-Fi Dine-in Theater Restaurant. While the food isn’t great, the drive-in movie decor with cars as tables makes it one of the toughest reservations to get.
Hollywood Studios definitely offers more options for enjoying adult beverages. This includes spirits as well as beer and wine. The most notable is Oga’s Cantina. Even though there is a 45-minutes time limit and a 2-drink minimum, Oga’s is another tough reservation to get.
Everyone loves Oga’s Star Wars theming, alcoholic drinks, and non-alcoholic drinks. Galaxy’s Edge’s Milk Stand offers blue milk with rum or green milk with tequila. You can enjoy these drinks you walk around the park.
Is Hollywood Studios the Best Disney World Park for Adults?
If you’re a big Star Wars fan, then yes! If you’re a Star Wars fan, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is your life’s quest. Let’s talk about how you will get there.
If you’re not a big Star Wars fan, you may still enjoy the attractions.
My favorite description of Epcot is “Epcot is dedicated to the celebration of human achievement, namely technological innovation and international culture, and is often referred to as a ‘permanent world’s fair.’”
My other favorite description of Epcot is that it’s a great place to have loads of fun, food, and drinks with friends.
Most of the rides are in the Future World section of Epcot. Choosing the best for adults depends on the individuals, but two popular options are Soarin’ and Test Track.
Unless you’re prone to motion sickness, I think Soarin’ is the best ride for adults in Epcot. Soarin’ flies you over several monuments and landmarks throughout the world in a fantastic IMAX experience.
Test Track is another good choice for adults. If you’re interested, you can design your own vehicle. (This feature is currently closed due to COVID restrictions.) Then you enjoy a high-speed test run of your vehicle.
It’s a fun way to go fast on a smooth track. It’s fast enough to make it fun without much to trigger motion sickness.
World Showcase consists of 11 pavilions representing 11 different countries, around a lagoon. (Everything is better on water.) Each country’s pavilion offers food and drinks from that country.
Dining at Epcot
Epcot is the park for foodies. Whether you want to have one fantastic meal or sample a wide variety of scrumptious cuisine, Epcot is the place for food. Each country pavilion offers a table service option, and ten of those pavilions and ten offer a Quick-service dining option.
Epcot even hosts 3 signature dining restaurants:
- Le Cellier (Canada Pavilion)
- Monsieur Paul (France Pavilion)
- Takumi-Tei (Japan Pavilion)
Epcot hosts a few great festivals every year. The Flower and Garden Festival is a little more chill and offers you plenty of time to enjoy strolls among topiaries and gardens.
Is Epcot the Best Disney World Park for Adults?
Most say, Yes, Epcot is the best Disney World park for adults. If strolling, eating, drinking, and shopping sound like fun to you, then let’s go. If you desire that your adult time includes more rides, then we’ll discuss a different park.
For your first trip to Disney World, I highly recommend you spend at least one day at each park.
Either of the Universal Parks is also a good choice for some adult fun. You can enjoy the Universal parks either as a Universal trip, a split stay, or visiting them during your Disney vacation.
Just as Star Wars fanatics need to visit Galaxy’s Edge, Harry Potter fans need to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. There are two Universal Parks, Universal Studios Florida and Universal Orlando Resort.
The following posts and podcast episodes comprise a complete guide to Universal Orlando.
- Universal Orlando Introduction
- The Grand Tour of Universal Studios Florida
- The Grand Tour of Universal Islands of Adventure.
- The Grand Tour of Universal’s Volcano Bay
- The Grand Tour of Universal’s CityWalk and Resorts.
- Comparing Disney World and Universal Orlando (in 2021)
- Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside.
- The Best Rides at Universal Orlando.
- A Beginner’s Guide to the Wizard World of Harry Potter.
How do you feel about adults loving Walt Disney World?
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