Unless you are Olaf, its not easy to stay cool at Disney in the summertime. Just like some people are worth melting for, some parks are worth melting in. We all know were going to go anyway and stand in those lines and in that sun. Being a Florida native and Disney World local I do have a few tricks that I use to manage the heat during the summer when I am in the parks.
1. Freeze your water bottles
Yes you can get free ice water from quick service locations in the park but you will have to lose time waiting in line. If you are in line for an hour you can dehydrate fast when you are sweating. You should always carry water with you.
The other reason to carry frozen water bottles with you is they can help bring your body temperature down fast. Placing a frozen water bottle on the back of your neck can bring a lot of relief.
2. Plan your most popular rides or rides with the longer lines earlier in the day or after sunset
Planning to do the more popular rides with the longer lines earlier in the day or later in the evening works out great for a couple reasons. You will avoid the crowds AND the heat. Talk about a win win.
3. Buy and wear a cooling towel, neck fan, or fan/mister
Cooling towels are towels you wet down with cold water then drape across your neck. They tend to need to be rewet every hour or so. Disney sells their own brand in the parks and its highly rated by guests. You can also pick up a few up online before your trip.
Neck fans are rechargeable devices you can hang across the back of your neck with a fan on each side that helps circulate the air around you. They sell a lot of them here at the local retail stores near Disney World but you can purchase them online as well.
Fan misters are sold in the parks if you are looking to purchase a Disney themed one. It certainly makes for a very practical souvenir. You can pick them up online as well and I like some of the ones with the bigger bottle openings so I can add ice. Its the perfect way to cool down fast. You can refresh the water throughout the day with the free ice water given out at the quick service restaurants.
4. Get that Mickey Bar
Yes, you’re at Disney and you’re here to have fun. Get that Mickey Bar and find some shade. Don’t forget the Dole Whips, frozen lemonades, and frozen Cokes. I will literally give my kids whatever they want if it means helping them stay cool at Disney, not to mention hydrated.
5. Splash in the water play areas
Some areas of the parks have designated water play areas. In Epcot near Future World East and Test Track there is a splash pad area that kids could play for hours in. Magic Kingdom has Casey Jr. Splash “N” Soak Station themed after the train from Disney’s Dumbo. Be sure to bring your child’s swimsuit and a change of clothes in case they get a little to excited and run in headfirst before your ready for it. Seriously for most of the younger crowd this is probably going to be their favorite attraction. I have no tips for how to get your child to leave without throwing a fit. You’re on your own there!
6. Take the family on a water ride
Round up your posse of overheated family members and hop on Splash Mountain for a fun and very wet way to cool down. Heck your already wet why not hit Pirates of the Caribbean next?
If your at Animal Kingdom (which sometimes feels like one of the hottest parks ever) make sure to check out Kali River Rapids. No one escapes dry!
7. Do the cooler less popular rides during the hottest hours
Think about what rides keep you indoors longer and DONT have long outdoor lines. Small World is a bit longer of a ride and is great at cooling you down. Its hot, family’s miserable, lines are long, Country Bear Jamboree is better than back to the hotel or heat stroke. Hall of Presidents here we come!
8. Wear moisture wicking fabrics
Ok I know. We all want to look cute but if you are not comfortable your going to have resting grouch face in all your pictures. Cotton, lightweight breathable fabrics, and special athletic wear designed to cool you are your best bet. Don’t assume that a tank top is always best. Your shoulders will get burned. Make sure to have a hat and cover your self lightly or use a good sunscreen too to avoid a blistering burn.
9. Take a midday pool break
Get in early to the parks or later in the day to stay cool at Disney. Hit the popular rides and then when crowds pour in around 11am to 12pm head back to the hotel and hit the pool. Not only does that give the younger ones (and older) a chance to nap it helps keep everyone happy. When you head back to the parks later it will be so much cooler.
10. Trains, boats, fast cars and more
A great way to stay cool at Disney is to hit up rides that create a nice breeze. The trains in Magic Kingdom are a good way to sit for a spell and still not feel like your missing out on anything. Test Track at Epcot is a fast ride with a nice breeze. Liberty Square Riverboat is a scenic trip around Tom Sawyers Island. We even like just taking the boats around the resorts. Even on the hottest day its nice and breezy on the boat.
Try to eat smaller meals more frequently to make sure you stop more often to cool down and hydrate. Don’t plan on doing everything. Plan in advance what your most important things are to do and plan around that.
I hope have a fun and safe summer at Disney and be sure to give Mickey a hug for me!
Stay tuned to WDW Travels for all the latest Disney info, tips, and news.