Non-Park Ideas for the Fourth of July at Walt Disney World

The weeks around the Fourth of July Celebration are some of the busiest of the year at Walt Disney World. Crowd levels usually rise to a 10 out of 10, and at the Magic Kingdom the gate will frequently reach capacity. When a park reaches capacity guests are no longer able to enter, and even having a coveted dining reservation won't get you in. If you plan on spending your Fourth of July Holiday at the Magic Kingdom, be sure to get there early and stay throughout the duration. Guests at Select Walt Disney world Resort Hotels are guaranteed entry into a theme park, but it will not necessarily be the one of your choosing. Before you feel left out though, both Epcot and Disney's Hollywood Studios offer a special holiday fireworks show in the evening.

Magic Kingdom Celebrates AmericaMagic Kingdom Celebrates America

Celebrating the 4th of July at Walt Disney World is just one of the things that I have on my Disney "Bucket List." However I'm not a huge fan of the Parks when they get crowded, if you're not either why not consider making the most of the amenities at the Walt Disney World Resort Hotels. While most of the tourists are flooding to the theme and water parks, you could be kicked back in a lounge chair sipping something sweet and fruity from the pool bar. Here are just a couple of things on my "to do" list for a WDW 4th.

  • Take a swim at the resort pool.
  • Rent a boat from the Marina and enjoy some time on the water.
  • Go horseback riding at Fort Wilderness.
  • Play a round of golf at one of the championship courses.
  • Do some shopping at Downtown Disney.
  • Make dinner reservations for the Hoop De Do Revue or Mickey's Back Yard BBQ.
  • Make s'mores at the resort campfire.
  • Watch a Disney movie under the stars or at your resort's float in theater.

Fourth of July Fireworks from the Polynesian BeachFourth of July Fireworks from the Polynesian Beach

The beach at Disney's Polynesian Resort have become and increasingly popular spot for non-resort guests to watch the spectacular Magic Kingdom Celebrate America! - A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky. In 2012 Disney tried to close the Polynesian Beach to anyone but resort guests and many people without a room key at the resort had to find a secondary location at the last minute. I have not yet heard of this will be the case in 2013. For the most private (and possibly romantic) fireworks viewing Disney's Polynesian, Contemporary, and Grand Floridian all offer hotel rooms with Magic Kingdom views. Why not beat the crowds and watch the celebration from your balcony?!

Now don't get me wrong, the Fourth of July is peak season and no matter where you go at Disney you will have a lot of people to deal with. However, just because it's busy, doesn't mean that you have to be miserable. Take some time for yourself, try to stay cool, and with a little pre-planning you can have a spectacular Fourth of July.

Thanks so much to Jeff Krause for sharing the Polynesian Beach Fireworks image through Creative Commons, it is amazing! It could be a little late for some of these ideas if you don't already have reservations, though it's never too early to start planning for next year! If you were at Disney for the Fourth would you be in the Parks or at the Pool? Leave a comment below and tell me what your plan includes!

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