You want to know the absolute worst part about visiting Disney? At some point, you have to go home. I know, it’s the worst feeling ever! During my most recent trip to Disney, I actually cried a little as the plane for taking off because I didn’t want to leave. But alas, Disney departure days are inevitable, so let’s make the best of them! Here are 10 ideas for your Disney departure day.
Character Dining: There is something so quintessentially Disney about character dining. Whether you go for the atmosphere, character interactions, or the food – you will not be disappointed. I really like to book a character dining experience for my last day at Disney. I find that it is a great way to wrap up the trip and really reflect on the vacation. Having a sit-down meal is a great way to check in with the other members of your party and talk about favorite moments. On my last trip to Disney, we had breakfast at Crystal Palace and it ended up being one of the highlights of the whole trip.
Meet Your Favorite Character: Disney vacations have a tendency to fly by, so make sure to carve out some time on your last day to meet your favorite character if you haven’t already. I always like to stop and say “see ya real soon” to the big cheese himself, Mickey Mouse.
Disney Springs: If you aren’t planning on heading to the parks for your last day, definitely consider checking out Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney). First, it’s free! You don’t have to worry about one more day of ticket expenses. Second, you can pick up all your last minute souvenirs at World of Disney and the other boutique shops. Third, grab some great grub. Disney Springs is filled with amazing restaurants that will satisfy even the pickiest eaters.
La Nouba: If you are looking for a unique experience that is not available anywhere else, consider checking out Cirque de Soleil’s La Nouba at Disney Springs.
“Witness this international cast as they perform glorious feats of incredible strength and breathtaking beauty. The French phrase “la nouba” literally translates to “the party.” And do these performers ever know how to celebrate! Acrobats, singers, trapeze artists, jugglers and clowns—more than 65 artists representing 15 countries—delight and mystify with daring acts of grace. A riot of color washes over every scene with the imaginative costumes, quixotic makeup and dynamic sets.” – disneyworld.disney.go.com
Showtimes are available for 6:00pm and 9:00pm. This is great if you have a very late flight, or a very early flight the next morning.
Spa Treatment: Real talk, walking around Disney for multiple days in a row is hard work! I know that my legs are killing me by the end of my trip. If you are looking for a relaxing way to spend your last day at Disney, consider booking a spa treatment. Wouldn’t it be great to head back to the real world completely relaxed and rejuvenated?
Pool Time: If a spa treatment isn’t in your budget (I know it’s not in mine!), you can still relax on your last day by spending some time at your resort’s pool. Take a swim, lay in the sun, or just cool off in the shallow end. Hanging out by the pool is a low-key way to wrap up your Disney experience. Just remember to pack some Ziploc bags for the wet swimsuits!
Hotel Hop: If you are anything like me (or the millions of other Disney guests), you spend most of your vacation running around the parks all day, everyday. If you aren’t at the parks, you are probably at your resort. On your last day at Disney, take some time and visit some of Disney’s other resorts. This a fun and free way to check out different areas of Disney, and a great way to start dreaming of your next vacation!
Boardwalk: Along the same vein as resort hopping, I like to take a few hours to walk about Boardwalk. My boyfriend likes ESPN Club, and I like sitting by the water with an ice-cream cone. Boardwalk provides a great opportunity to just relax and take a little bit of a mental break.
One Last Ride: If you have one last day of park tickets available, head to your favorite park and jump on your favorite attraction one last time. That last spin around Space Mountain can be bittersweet, but worth it! If the lines are too long, spend a few hours racing to all the attractions with a short wait time – who cares if Hall of President’s isn’t really your thing – at least you can say you did it!
Confirm Your Flight: Okay, this one isn’t fun, but it’s definitely important. On the last day of your trip, take some time to pack up, triple check your room for anything you may have forgotten, tip mousekeeping, and confirm your flight itinerary. Leaving Disney is just a little more bearable when everything runs smoothly.
Leaving Disney is hard. Like, really hard! But you can still have a great time on your departure day. Whether you are heading to the parks for one last visit, taking some time to chill out pool-side, or exploring Disney Springs – departure days can be filled with Disney magic.
How do you like to spend your last day at Disney? Let me know in the comments!
Monica is an Alumna of the Disney College Program. When she is not walking down the middle of Main Street USA you can find her wandering the World Showcase, or enjoying a Dole Whip while racing to her favorite attractions. When she is forced to endure life outside of Walt Disney World, you can find her in Ann Arbor, Michigan where she lives and works. You can visit her Disney lifestyle blog here.