What’s on your family’s vacation bucket list? Maybe it’s seeing the pyramids in Egypt, snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, making pasta in Italy, or glamping under the Montana stars. One of the most unique, hassle-free ways to travel with your family is with a guided vacation with Adventures by Disney: Disney Family Vacations. You won’t meet Mickey Mouse or Cinderella on your tour (unless you choose the Southern California/Disneyland Adventure) but you’ll be immersed in the local culture. Plus, exclusive insider access on an expertly curated, luxury itinerary! You’ll also have the service and safety you’d expect from traveling with Disney. Adventures by Disney is Disney’s most exclusive travel product with the highest guest rating of any Disney Destination. Since many families have never heard of Adventures by Disney, I’m here to fill you in. Here’s everything you need to know before selecting and booking your Adventures by Disney!
Are My Kids the Right Ages for Adventures by Disney?
First and foremost, you may be asking yourself: are my kids old enough to take an Adventures by Disney trip? Children under the age of 4 are not able to travel with Adventures by Disney group itineraries. (You can consider a private Adventure if you have a younger child who would not be old enough.) Most trips have a recommended age of 6, and many are recommended for ages 8 and up. Once you do make the decision to take your children on an Adventures by Disney trip, they will thrive with the other Junior Adventurers. They’re likely to make great new friends too! The Adventure Guides often treat the children to special surprises, treats, games, and prizes. At times, they might have the option to separate from the adults while touring. (Sometimes the adults join in the kids’ activities too!)
Teenagers can be a hard-to-please group, but Adventures by Disney is sure to enthrall them with an unforgettable experience. They can have as much or as little independence as they please. Is your teen more adventurous than you are? Don’t worry — families may choose to split up for certain activities with your permission. Your thrill-seeking teen can participate in these activities with other teens and Adventure Guides. Meanwhile, parents can enjoy a calmer alternative. Most Adventures include a Junior Adventurer Night for the kids to have an evening off from their parents. The Adventure Guides host dinner, activities, and a Disney movie while the adults have some time to themselves. Although Junior Adventures are usually 12 and under, we have found that even teens want to join in on Junior Adventurer Night. Kids of all ages can bond and become a family!
Where Can I Travel with Adventures by Disney?
Adventures by Disney is now traveling to destinations on all seven continents! Whether you want to explore our nation’s national parks in Wyoming, Montana, or Alaska, see wild animals on a safari in South Africa, explore castles in Europe; or, explore the diverse ecosystems in the Galapagos, Adventures by Disney can take you there on a hassle-free, almost all-inclusive luxury vacation. Adventures by Disney offers Land Tours (including Short Escapes), Private Adventures, Family Friendly Luxury River Cruises, Expedition Cruises, and packages aboard Disney Cruise Line. There are over 40 Adventures for families to choose from!
Western and Central Europe
Traveling to Europe but concerned your kids will be bored? Adventures by Disney is the way to go! Land tours range in length from 3-day “short escapes” to 12-day vacations, always led by two guides — one Disney Cast Member and one guide from the destination. Traveling with other kids and engaging guides will take your worries away. For families with young children, Adventure By Disney’s seven-night Italy itinerary to Rome, Florence, and Venice is one of the most popular options. As is the Greece 9-night Adventure, which takes you from the ancient Acropolis to the gorgeous blue waters of the Aegean Sea. Other European options include England and France, Ireland, Scotland, Portugal, Spain, Germany, Iceland, Norway, Italy and Switzerland, Italy’s Amalfi Coast, and Central Europe (Poland, Czech Republic, and Austria). All land Adventures include hotels, transfers, tours and activities, most meals, and gratuities for everyone but your Adventure guides.
You can also experience a taste of Adventures by Disney on a short escape to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Budapest, Copenhagen, London, Paris, or Rome (perhaps before a Disney Mediterranean Cruise or in combination with an Adventures by Disney River Cruise).
Asia, Africa, The Americas, and Beyond
Families seeking a trip outside of Western or Central Europe will also have a lot of choices. Adventures by Disney also includes trips to destinations such as Australia, New Zealand, Egypt, South East Asia, Japan, China, and South Africa. This is truly the way to travel to immerse your family in the culture, food, history, and fun of each area while knowing that Disney “has your back” in terms of safety and security. In the Americas, you can zip line with your kids, white water raft, and soak in Costa Rica’s hot springs. Or, explore Incan ruins and hike Machu Picchu in Peru.
If you prefer to explore the United States, Adventures by Disney elevates the typical family vacation with truly hassle-free experiences. My family took the Arizona and Utah Adventure and appreciated that nobody had to drive! We loved the luxury of the Enchantment Resort in Sedona and the more rustic lodge on the rim inside Grand Canyon National Park. Next on our list is the Montana Adventure, which includes glamping under the stars. Or, the Wyoming Adventure which includes a stay at the amazing Brooks Lake Lodge. For true Disney fans, the Southern California and Disneyland Adventure is the pinnacle of VIP Disney access.
Adventure by Disney River Cruises
A unique category of Adventures by Disney travel is river cruising. Adventures by Disney conducted careful research and partnered with luxury river cruise line AmaWaterways to create family-friendly river cruises. They charter the entire river cruise ship and Disney Adventure guides join the AmaWaterways crew to make magic on the Danube, Rhine, and Seine Rivers. River cruises allow you to experience European towns close up from your floating hotel. Adventures by Disney River Cruises are truly all-inclusive, all-guide and crew gratuities, all meals, wine and beer at meals, daily cocktail hour, wifi. Of course, all excursions are included. As a huge fan of Disney Cruise Line, I was a bit skeptical about river cruising. But I left the Danube River Cruise a true fan. We loved sitting on the deck as we sailed past castles, walking off the ship into small towns, and making new friends at incredible open-seating meals.
Adventure by Disney Ocean Cruises
If you are a fan of ocean cruising, combine a Disney Cruise with an Adventures by Disney package aboard the Disney Magic for itineraries in Europe. Or, hop aboard the Disney Wonder for Alaska cruises. Adventures by Disney guests receive special perks onboard the ship and then travel together in ports for port adventures exclusive to them. (You can reserve any cabin category but select a concierge stateroom. Or, a suite for an even more luxurious experience on the ship!)
Adventures by Disney also has new expedition cruises to Antarctica and Galapagos. Disney partnered with luxury cruise line Ponant to create a unique Antarctica experience for families with kids ages 12 and older. December 2021 sold out quickly, so they have added an additional date. Starting in Buenos Aires, you will fly to Ushuaia and board the gorgeous ship for the Drake Passage and the Antarctic Peninsula. You won’t have to worry about a thing, even your parka and boots will be provided. Or, you can sail on an expedition cruise through the Galapagos Islands to get up close to seals, penguins, and iguanas. No matter which Adventure you start with, we’ll be ready to help plan the next.
What’s the Disney Difference for Adventures by Disney?
Unless you are taking an Adventures by Disney trip that visits Disneyland (talk about insider access!), you won’t see Mickey Mouse on your trip. ABD creates Disney Magic in other ways that are unique to each trip. Pixie dust flies unexpectedly, and we won’t spoil those surprises! But the best magic is the unforgettable family bonding that comes from experiencing the world with your family, free of stress or worry.
One of the top reasons to travel with Adventures by Disney is the “paddle of power,” which opens doors no other tour company can open. This allows for exclusive “backstage” access to unique experiences at every destination. On the Poland, Czech Republic, and Austria Adventure, for example, we visited the Vienna Zoo after hours and then had a private dinner in the Emperor’s Pavilion. On an Adventures by Disney Italy trip, you’ll have a private after-hours tour of the Vatican Museum. Disney is always about storytelling. The Adventure Guides and local experts share the stories of each destination in unforgettable ways. They also help you keep those memories by taking photos the entire time and sharing them with you when you get home. That means your entire family can be in the pictures!
Who Are the Adventures by Disney Guides?
Each Adventures by Disney Land Tour is led by two Adventure Guides (River Cruises and Expedition Cruises will have more guides proportional to group size.) One guide is a Disney Cast Member (Adventure Guides are one of the most competitive positions with Disney!). ABD chooses the other guide from the local region. These two guides travel with your group to provide unforgettable service. From the moment you arrive, they take care of everything small and big, including luggage transfers, dietary concerns, snacks and drinks on the coach, coins for bathrooms when needed, and anything unexpected that may arise. Catch a cold on your Adventure? Your guides will help you find cold medicine when you can’t read the labels. Your flight got delayed and is now arriving at 2 am? A guide might personally meet you at the airport to take you to the hotel!
In addition to your two Adventure Guides, ABD brings in local experts to each stop of your tour. Hear from a geologist while sitting at the edge of the Grand Canyon, a costumed historical guide on the streets of Bratislava, or a local fisherman in Norway. They provide the opportunity to authentically engage with the local people, cultures, and traditions.
Where Will I Stay on an Adventures by Disney Family Vacation?
No matter which destination you choose, rest assured knowing Adventures by Disney has selected the highest quality accommodations for your family. The Disney name ensures that hotels provide the best rooms, connecting rooms when available for families, and top-notch service. Many hotels even have pools so that the kids (and adults) can have some carefree fun during downtime. What a great way to make new friends! On some Adventures, you’ll have unique accommodations — a castle in Ireland or a yurt in Montana, for example. Your guides take care of checking in/out and also bring your luggage to your room. All you have to do is show up and enjoy!
Is Food Included in an Adventures by Disney Family Vacation?
Depending on your Adventures by Disney family itinerary, most (or all) meals are included with your Adventure. The day begins with a fantastic breakfast in the hotel. Then, you’ll experience the flavors of local cuisines, usually in a private or semi-private setting with your Adventure group. Those with more adventurous palates will have the opportunity to try new foods unique to a particular culture. Plus, for picky eaters of all ages, there will always be more mainstream options. During free time and meals on your own, the Adventure Guides are great at making recommendations. As with other Disney destinations, ABD is extremely accommodating of allergies and dietary restrictions. For example, when a fellow Adventurer had an extremely sensitive peanut allergy, the Adventure guides ensured no peanut products were offered as snacks on the bus. Your guides will work with local restaurants and vendors to ensure all your needs are met.
Why Should I Use a Travel Advisor to Book My Adventures by Disney Family Vacation?
Adventures by Disney is a significant investment for a trip of a lifetime. For this reason, we recommend booking your trip through an experienced travel advisor. Disney trusts Authorized Disney Vacation Planner agencies who are recognized for their knowledge, service, and sales, to help guests plan their Adventures. A knowledgeable full-service travel agency can assist with every aspect of your trip. This includes international flights, pre, and post-Adventure plans, and travel insurance. My Path Unwinding Travel is an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner. Our travel advisors are Adventures by Disney experts and luxury family travelers themselves. We are available when you need us to be- by email, phone, text, or messenger. Let us serve as your single point of contact, advocate, advocate, and vacation cheerleader.
We hope you enjoyed this article All About Adventures by Disney written by Karen Shelton! If you’re interested in booking an Adventures by Disney vacation with your own family, contact My Path Unwinding Travel for a complimentary consultation and more information. Or, reach out to Karen directly at email@example.com and mention Families Love Travel for a special welcome home gift!
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*Sponsored by My Path Unwinding Travel, an authorized Disney vacation planner.
*Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the things on this list may be temporarily closed or experiencing reduced services. Please ensure availability before making your decision.