Disney Disney World travel

What to do on your Disney Arrival Day

So your flights not landing at MCO till around noon. By the time you get to the resort it will be early afternoon. What do you do?

Do you spend the rest of the day at a park? Just relax by the pool? Maybe have a character dinner at Chef Mickey’s.

It can be hard to decide, after all you’ve been waiting for this day to finally come for months if not years. So what do you do? Just sit back with your favorite drink as we give you ideas on what to do on your Disney arrival day.

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Disney Springs

Grabbing the bus over to Disney Springs after checking into your resort is a great idea. I usually drive down so I’m staying off site the day before my Disney vacation officially begins. We always go and hit up Disney Springs.

They offer so many different shops and restaurants that finding the right one can be tough. it has one of the largest if not the largest Disney Store in the world. It also has the largest Lego Store I’ve ever seen.

The My Disney Experience app claims that Disney Springs has 93 shops. There’s clothing shops, toy shops, art stores and of course candy shops. There is even a bowling alley and movie theater.

We haven’t even gotten to the best part of Disney  Springs. THE FOOD!!! The different options are simply incredible. Grab anything from sushi to pizza. BBQ to sandwich es and everything in between.

Disney Springs has some of the best quick service restaurants in all of Walt Disney World.

Check out Guy Fieri’s Chicken Guy restaurant with some amazing dipping sauces. Or maybe hop into Polite Pig for some lip smacking good BBQ. Even my picky 8 year old daughter even enjoyed this place.

Disney Springs also has some spectacular sit down restaurants as well. If you are a fan of Rainforest Cafe, check out T-Rex. Owned by the same company but is themed around Dinosaurs.

If seafood  is more your thing, check out The Boathouse. They have some great surf and turf options. This restaurant is on the Disney Dining Plan however you will be better off paying out of pocket instead of using 2 credits.

The possibilities are endless when you visit Disney Springs on your Arrival Day.


When it comes to your arrival day is there anything better for the kids than a day at the pool? The rest of your trip is going to be hectic. Why not have a nice relaxing day at your resort pool.

1950s Retro Red Vintage One Piece Monokini White Polka Swimsuits
pool, refreshing, clear, water

Of course not all resort pools are created equal. However, they are all refreshing after a flight and bus ride into Walt Disney World. Each resort has it’s own unique theme for the pools.

Boys’ Mickey Mouse Swim Trunk

Most Disney World Resorts have 3 or more pools to check out. While the pools are a little better at the moderate and deluxe resorts (slides), value resort pools are great too. If you are staying at Art of Animation the big blue pool has underwater speakers. That’s pretty cool if you ask me.


Maybe swimming is not your thing. If it’s not, why don’t you go and explore the resort you are staying at or even one you are not. Many people are not aware of this but you can visit any resort you like while at Disney.

One resort that is worth the look is Animal Kingdom Lodge. They have many different animal viewing areas all around the resort. The resort is also very nicely done with the theming. However, it can be a little tricky to navigate.

Some of the Deluxe resorts (including Animal Kingdom Lodge) have Spas and fitness centers. Even if you are not staying at that resort you can book a trip to their spa. Is there a better way to start off your vacation?

All of the different resorts also have a walking path around the entire resort for walking or running. You can get a very good look at what is offered around your resort and really dive into the theming.


Maybe you can book a nice dinner at one of the many restaurants that are not in a theme park. Places like Chef Mickey’s, ‘Ohana (Breakfast only), Mickey’s Backyard BBQ, Cape May Cafe (breakfast only), 1900 Park Fare all offer character dining. If meeting characters is on your must do list, checking some off at a character meal on your arrival day can help save you time from standing in line later on.

If it’s just you and the Mrs/Mr try having a nice dinner at Boma (Animal Kingdom Lodge), California Grill (Contemporary), or the Edison (Disney Springs NOTE: 21 and over after 10pm).

If you do find your self over at Animal Kingdom Lodge (I know talking a lot about AKL) check out if they are offering the FREE culinary tour of Boma and Jiko. It’s a 30 minute tour that offers an inside look at the restaurants right before the dinner buffet starts. Might be fun for the whole family.


If you arrive in the early evening or even if you arrived earlier in the day checking out the fireworks from outside the parks can be a fun time. There are many different resorts that can see the fireworks from the different theme parks. If you had dinner at California Grill make sure to save your receipt. You can come back around Magic Kingdom fireworks time and go on the viewing area.

You can also enjoy the Fireworks from the beaches at the Polynesian Village Resort. Also keep your eyes out on the water for one of the oldest parades. If you have never seen the Electrical Water Pageant it’s worth seeing it once.    


If taking Magical Express from MCO plan on at least 2 hours to get to your resort when your plane is scheduled to land.

Ride the Monorail to EPCOT and back again. Be sure to also check out the resort on the Monorail loop.

Some people suggest to go straight to the parks if you are staying 6 days or less.

They also suggest doing a resort tour on your arrival day if you are staying 7 days or more.

Check out what special activities your resort is doing. They always have a pool party around 3pm. Be sure to Pick up a resort guide when you check in.

Take a drawing class at Art of Animation.

Take it all in. Your vacation is only just beginning.  

Disney World Deals! Save on your vacation!

Who says you need to head straight to the park on your arrival day. While you can do that, hanging back your first day there doesn’t have to be boring. There are plenty of things to see and do all around Walt Disney World.

If I were to pick I would say spend the rest of your arrival day at Disney Springs. Since I am usually getting to Orlando the day before my Disney Vacation starts I spend the evening at Disney Springs. Grab some good food, look at the Disney Store and just relax cause I know the next week won’t be so relaxing.

Do you have any other tips? What do you usually do when you first arrive at Walt Disney World. Is your arrival day action packed with 2 parks, 1 sit down dinner, fireworks show and ice cream at the boardwalk? Let us know in the comments below. Be sure to follow kozmophotos on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. By following kozmophotos you will be the first to know when a new post is up.

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