You want to be involved in your trip to Disney World, and you don’t want to slow down the kids. But the fact remains: there’s a big difference between the level of energy in an adolescent and a senior citizen! We’ve found some great ways for you to take a rest without having to slow down the family.

Book a character meal

Table service meals provide the perfect opportunity to relax and take a break from the heat. However, kids excited about all that Disney offers may be restless and want to rush through the meal. The best option is to book character meals. While you eat the kiddos can meet, have their pictures taken, and even get autographs from a variety of Disney characters.

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The characters generally come around one at a time, which means the kids will have to stay seated and patient until they’ve met every character – and that gives you plenty of time to take a break. There are numerous character meals in the parks, but our favorite in each of the four theme parks are:

  • Magic Kingdom: Crystal Palace. Here the kids can meet Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, and Tigger.
  • EPCOT: Garden Grill. Mickey, Goofy, and Chip and Dale all come around dressed up as farmers. The food is delicious, the pacing is relaxed, and it’s a great opportunity for site-seeing too, as the restaurant gently and slowly rotates around the adjacent attraction The Land.
  • Animal Kingdom: Tusker House. Meet safari characters like Daisy Duck and Goofy while you enjoy a delicious buffet of traditional African food plus favorite American comfort foods.
  • Hollywood Studios: Hollywood & Vine. If more characters are what you’re looking for, this is your spot. Kids can meet more characters than anywhere else and the buffet-style food is varied, plentiful, and delicious.

Take a seat and enjoy the fireworks or parades

While the kids aren’t generally going to want to take breaks, they may make an exception if it means getting a top spot for parades or fireworks. Take a seat at a restaurant in the World Showcase to get a prefect view of the fireworks at Epcot, sit down along Main Street in the Magic Kingdom, or get to Fantasmic early. Any of these options will give you a break and will likely be worth it to the grandkids.

Visit one of the numerous playgrounds around the parks

All four parks have a playground somewhere within them. At Animal Kingdom it’s the Boneyard, where kids can uncover dinosaur bones, and at Hollywood Studios the playground is themed after Honey I Shrunk the Kids. These are great enclosed areas where you can take a seat and still keep an eye on the kids while they play.

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