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The best age for a Disney vacation

October 26, 2005 04:06 PM EST | North America | Email to Friend | Comments (0)

Grappling with the idea of taking the kids on a Disney vacation? Are you not sure if they are too young and will just be overwhelmed or too old and will be bored? Well, I will let you in on a secret; the best age to take the kids on Disney Vacation is............whatever age they happen to be! We first took our son when he was two and he loved it as did our neighbour’s teenagers, but the trip will be smoother if you follow a few simple guidelines:

Keep their ages foremost in mind
Choose rides and activities that are age appropriate, your toddler will not appreciate the Tower of Terror and your teenagers will want to pluck out their fingernails on It’s a Small World. If you are traveling with children of wide age ranges, then a compromise will be in order. Some options are to split up, do alternate half days or make it clear that if they do this for two hours, will then do that. Find other ways to keep them amused if they are out of their element, younger kids may nap in line ups, older kids might be amused with their Game Boys etc.

Balance out your days
The younger the children, the less you will be able to pack into one day. Try not to do it all at once. Let you family pick and choose the rides and events they really, really want and focus on those. A day at the parks can be followed by a day at a water park or relaxing by the hotel pool.

Disney tips for young children
Make sure you plan for plenty of naps and rest times, bring a stroller, choose hotels close to the parks or stay on site so you can get back and forth easily, bring snacks and juice along, go at your child’s pace. Some children will love all the excitement, others may find it too much, so take your cues from your child and go at THEIR pace.

Disney tips for older children
Give them some breathing room, let them explore on their own if possible, set a time and meeting place if they do go off on their own, bring walkie-talkies or cell phones to stay in touch, don’t force them to do things they don’t want to do, remember it’s a vacation - it’s supposed to be relaxing right?

Try to avoid releasing the beast
The most important guideline to follow on your Disney vacation, or any family vacation for that matter, is to not let your children get too hungry or too tired. All parents are familiar with the tired, hungry, cranky child. On vacation, when they are probably already out of sorts, pushing them to the limit should be avoided. Keep an eye on meal times and nap times and try to keep them on track. Rest before the kids are exhausted and eat before they are ready to chew their own arms off.

Keep in mind these guidelines and you and your children can enjoy a Disney vacation at any age!

Jolana Klobouk is a former travel agent who has traveled extensively for work and vacations with her family. For more travel information, visit her travel websites: http://www.best-family-beach-vacations.com and http://www.FlyFromCanada.com

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