A visit to the Walt Disney World Resort almost always involves spending time at the theme parks. However, rest days are also worth considering during your Walt Disney World Resort vacation. Whether it’s to recharge or to explore beyond Disney, there are many ways to spend the day if you do not plan to visit one of the parks. So, what do you do on rest days at the Walt Disney World Resort?

Here, we go beyond the theme parks to explore things to do on your rest days.

Disney Springs

Rest Days at Walt Disney World - Disney Springs

Shopping, entertainment, dining, and so much more are available at Disney Springs. It’s easy to spend the whole day wandering around this waterfront destination.

Here, explore the World of Disney for any kind of Disney merchandise you can think of! If you can’t find it at the parks, this is where you want to go! Looking for something else? You can find everything from Coach to purses and accessories to the Coca-Cola Store.

The dining options are plentiful too. We always recommend the Sunday brunch at Wine Bar George. However, Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza is a great quick-service restaurant. In addition, the Rainforest Café® and T-REX™ are both family-friendly options that are usually a hit with younger guests.

Don’t forget to stop by Gideon’s Bakehouse to grab your “almost half-pound” cookie! Make sure you join the virtual line for this popular stop though – it gets very busy!

Shopping and dining aren’t the only things to explore at Disney Springs though.

There are currently a few spots where you can see live music or entertainment:

  • AdventHealth Waterside Stage
  • The Edison
  • Stargazers (Planet Hollywood)
  • Exposition Park
  • Riverboat Square
  • Sunshine Highline
  • Waterview Park

In addition, catch a movie at AMC Movies at Disney Springs 24 or strike up an appetite at Splitsville Luxury Lanes™.

This fall, there is an exciting new addition to the Disney Springs entertainment schedule.

Opening on November 18, the much-anticipated Drawn to Life Presented by Cirque du Soleil® & Disney will be showing on select nights. This unique and first-time collaboration is bound to be filled with Disney magic! Tickets are now on sale and advance reservations are highly recommended.

Resort Activities

Rest Days at Walt Disney World - pool time

If your goal is to spend time at your resort, there is plenty to do.

Take advantage of the pools. Each Disney resort has a main pool and at least one smaller leisure pool. There are often cast members there during the day playing games with the younger guests.

In addition, check with the front desk of your resort about other activities such as tie-dye, campfires, and movies under the stars. There are usually a variety of activities offered during the day for all ages.

Some activities may be modified at this time for safety.


Character Dining at Topolino's Terrace – Flavors of the Rivie

A rest day is a great opportunity to enjoy one of the amazing restaurants outside of the parks. Use Disney transportation to take advantage of the food options at any of the other resorts or at Disney Springs. Whether it’s a fun character breakfast or a nice dinner after a relaxing day, there is something to please your palette.

We recommend the breakfast at Topolino’s Terrace at Disney’s Riviera Resort or Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Both of these are character meals.

For a nice dinner, we suggest ‘Ohana at Disney’s Polynesian Resort. The Yachtsman Steakhouse at Disney’s Yacht Club is perfect for a signature dining experience.

For a little fun and a delicious meal for the whole family, head over to Whispering Canyon Cafe at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.

We can’t forget dessert! At Disney’s Beach Club, Beaches and Cream restaurant offers all kinds of delicious ice cream treats as well as a lunch and dinner menu.

Fort Wilderness

Rest Days at Walt Disney World

Photo Courtesy: Disney

Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is the place to be for all kinds of outdoor fun and activities.

Spend the whole day relaxing in the outdoors with options to rent a kayak or canoe, horseback riding, and more.

Head to the Tri-Circle-D Ranch for a stroll through the stables. Take a peek at Cinderella’s Ponies and horses that trot down Main Street, U.S.A. Horseback riding is available for guests 9 years of age and older. Reservations are recommended for the trail ride experience.

Pony rides are also available for younger guests on a walk-up basis. This experience is recommended for those at least 2 years of age, under 48″ and less than 80 pounds.

For guests age 7 and older, try your hand at archery at the Bike Barn. Archery guides give guests a lesson on how to use a compound bow and then the practice begins! Advance reservations are highly recommended for this activity but walk-ups are welcome as space permits.

Guided fishing excursions and boat rentals are also available here.


Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Walt Disney World

Photo Courtesy Disney

At the Walt Disney World Resort, there are two miniature golf courses.

The Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf features two courses the choose from. The first – the Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course – features five scenes from the beloved Disney classic Fantasia. This course is perfect for families and beginners.

The Fantasia Fairways Miniature Golf Course resembles a traditional golf course and is an exciting challenge. It features par-3 and par-5 holes ranging in length from 63 to 109 feet long. As you play, take in the sights of the Tower of Terror and the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotels as your backdrops.

The second option is the Winter Summerland Miniature Golf. Choose from two 18-hold adventures designed by Santa Claus himself!

On the Summer Course, enjoy fun in the sun with surfboards, sandcastles, and decorated palm trees. Be on the lookout for Santa who is buried in sand, snoozing away! Then, on the Winter Course, journey to the North Hole as you encounter giant peppermints, hockey sticks, and more. Watch out for Squirty the Snowman, who sprays water at golfers as the golf balls pass underneath.

Go Outside the “Disney Bubble”

Universal Studios Florida

Are you looking to go outside of the “Disney Bubble” on your rest day? There are plenty of options for a fun day!

First, there is more than one castle in Orlando! Consider a visit to Universal Orlando Resort for a different theme park experience. Although a split stay is always recommended to enjoy everything this destination has to offer, a one-day trip would give you a taste of the fun! Our friends at Key to the World Travel® can help you plan that visit and a longer return trip if you are thirsty for more!

Alternatively, if you want a more relaxing day, a trip to one of the local beaches might be right up your alley. Although the Walt Disney World Resort is located in central Florida, there are several beaches on either coast that are just a short drive away.

There is plenty to do at the Walt Disney World Resort and in the Orlando area on your next vacation. So, enjoy your time in the parks but don’t forget to check out the other fun options in the area!


Are you considering a trip? This is a great time to plan your perfect vacation! Having a travel advisor means someone there to have your back in any occurrence. There is no additional cost to you and you have peace of mind knowing that your vacation is in good hands. Contact our friends at Key to the World Travel® for a free, no-obligation quote for your next trip. Click here.

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