Someone holding a full drink with the EPCOT Food & Wine Festival logo and a red and white striped straw

The Ultimate Guide: A Solo Trip to Disney World

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February 21, 2024

If you could choose anywhere to take a solo trip, what would it be, and why is it Disney World? 

Ok, all joking and obvious bias aside, we’d choose Disney for a solo trip again and again. I mean, we already do (for “research!”). 

Solo travel can be an incredibly rewarding experience in itself. Traveling at your own pace, choosing what you want to do and when you want to do it, and embracing new experiences are all incredibly fulfilling ways to experience a vacation.

Between four attraction-packed parks, dozens of extracurriculars, endless dining options, and a totally immersive atmosphere, Disney is hands down the easiest place for a solo person to travel. It’s the perfect stepping stone for people who have always wanted the freedom to solo travel but might have felt overwhelmed or intimidated. 

We say embrace the opportunity to try new things and explore attractions and restaurants you might not have considered before! You could always find a new favorite.

But until you find your own favorites, here’s a list of our top favorite things to do when traveling solo at Disney. 

Note: If you’re new to Disney planning and need to start from the beginning, be sure to check out our step-by-step planning checklist!

1. Stay wherever the eff you want

The best way we could think to kick off this post was with our favorite part about solo travel: stay wherever you want! Your preferences and priorities are the only things to consider.

  • Is transportation important to you? Consider a Skyliner resort.

  • Looking for something more adult-centric and elevated? Go Deluxe!
  • Trying to strike a balance between luxurious and budget-friendly? We love us some Moderate resorts.

  • Prefer to immerse yourself in classic Disney theming? Check out the Value resorts. 

  • Want a resort that offers a wider range of activities? We have a list of each resort and their various offerings to help you decide.

Pro Tip: If you want to upgrade your stay without breaking the bank, consider a Split Stay! Moving your luggage and items mid-trip may be a bit more hassle, but it’s a fun way to stay at more than one Disney resort or experience a dream resort that is usually totally out of budget.

2. Take advantage of walk-up seating

What if we told you that you don’t always need a dining reservation at Disney?

You read that correctly.

Many spots around the resorts and Disney Springs offer bar or lounge seating on a first-come, first-serve basis. Some of our favorite bars and lounges to grab a drink and/or bite at include:

  • Geyser Point (Wilderness Lodge)

  • Steakhouse 71 (Contemporary)

  • Morimoto (Disney Springs)

  • Tambu Lounge (Polynesian)

Smaller parties already tend to have better luck scoring last-minute seating in these places, but a solo traveler can often find themselves to be particularly lucky – especially at off-peak dining times!

3. Ask about Single Rider Lines

Single Rider lines are an excellent way to shave down wait times for certain attractions, especially if you’re traveling solo. While it’s never guaranteed your wait will be shorter than the standby line, it often works out that way.

Currently, there are four rides that offer a single-rider line: 

  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster (Hollywood Studios)

  • Expedition Everest (Animal Kingdom)

  • Test Track (EPCOT)

  • Millennium Falcon Smuggler’s Run (Hollywood Studios)

But you should always double-check with the Cast Member at the queue entrance to see if the option is available—sometimes they’ll scoot you into an “expedited area” (this happens often for us at Flight of Passage and Space Mountain).

4. Monorail Resort Hop

One of our all-time favorite ways to spend time outside the parks is to hop on the Monorail for a leisurely loop around each of the Monorail resorts. 

Spend as much time hopping as you want on your break day, or work in a shorter version during a midday park break!

Our rec? Start at Tambu Lounge and/or Trader Sam’s (Polynesian), then hit Enchanted Rose (Grand Floridian),  before finishing with a Stack Burger and Mac & Cheese at the Steakhouse 71 Lounge (Contemporary). Yum!

5. Skyliner Hop

Similarly, you could take a spin on the Skyliner, a mode of Disney transportation that we consider an attraction all on its own.

This works best on your EPCOT or Hollywood Studios days, but realistically you could work it in whenever because you can do whatcha want on your solo trip!

Take a trip over to the Riviera Resort to visit Le Petit Cafe (i.e. one of the most glorious pastry cases on property) and Primo Piatto, a solid quick-service meal option. If you’re in the mood for a cocktail in an open-air setting, swing by Bar Riva.

Or, even better, take the Skyliner all the way down to the EPCOT stop and take a stroll over to explore the beautiful BoardWalk.

6. Visit the BoardWalk

While we’re thinking about it, you should make time to visit the BoardWalk period. Of all the things we love to do at Disney, we consider visiting the BoardWalk our #1 must-do outside of the parks.

Take in the sights with a margarita from BoardWalk Joe’s in hand, play classic midway games, grab an ice cream cone, visit Jellyrolls for dueling piano fun, or stop and eat at any one of the amazing food spots – the list goes on!

7. Brunch & Shop

There’s something extra special about sleeping in on vacation, having an amazing breakfast, and then exploring and window shopping at your own pace.

Some of our favorite places to enjoy brunch are:

  • Trattoria al Forno (BoardWalk): One of our favorite restaurants on property. The Tiramisu Bread Pudding is to die for.

  • Homecomin’ (Disney Springs): The pinnacle of comfort food. Remember to check for a seat at the bar if you don’t have a res!

  • Olivia’s Cafe (Old Key West): Classic and well-loved. Take the boat after your delicious meal to Disney Springs!

  • Raglan Road (Disney Springs): Awesome menu, consistently delicious. Try the Strawberry Fields Mimosa. 

Follow this with afternoon drinks and window shopping at some of our favorite places in Disney Springs and this is a break day you can’t beat.

8. Hit the spa

Contrary to the high energy of the parks, there are opportunities for total relaxation at Disney, too.

Consider booking a massage at one of the many spas around property. Ranging from nail services to facials to massages (with or without bells and whistles), there is something for everyone at many price points.

If you’re already treating yourself to a solo Disney trip, you might as well go all the way, eh?

9. Take your time in the World Showcase

EPCOT is a fantastic park for taking things at your own pace. Between the major headliners and the beautiful, detail-rich World Showcase pavilions, we like to devote two days to EPCOT if at all possible. 

Spend some time sampling the many things to eat and drink around the World Showcase, or check out EPCOT’s more underrated attractions.

Either way, taking the time to slow down and absorb EPCOT is our favorite way to tour the park.

10. Make your drinks an experience

If you’re one of over 30,000 subscribers to our (free!) Listletter, you’ll probably recognize some of the beverages and watering holes we recommend the most.

But there is more than one way to enjoy a good drink at Disney, and if you’re looking for more of an experience, they’ve got those, too!

Some of our favorites include savoring champagne flights at Les Vins de France, attending Sangria University at Three Bridges Bar & Grill, and tequila tasting at La Cava del Tequila.

11. Treat yourself to a signature dinner (at least once!)

Nothing says vacation to us quite like splurging on an incredible dinner and booking a reservation for signature dining at Disney is no different. 

“Signature” more or less translates to “fine dining” at Disney, with these restaurants often providing the best service, food, and drinks – often at a higher price.

Most of them are well worth the expense, with a few of our favorites being:

  • Jiko (Animal Kingdom Lodge): Worldly cuisine, foodie-approved. We dream about the Braised Wild Boar Tenderloin app.

  • Flying Fish (BoardWalk): Amazing seafood, Disney mainstay. Try the Plancha-seared Scallops.

  • Topolino’s Terrace (Riviera): Italian-Riviera inspired. Try the Gnocchi and Ricotta apps.

If you do nothing else on this list, make this the one thing. Trust us.

12. Book a tour

One of the best ways to experience the parks from a totally unique perspective, Disney offers a broad range of tours and activities for the interested park-goer (or solo traveler looking to fill up some time!).

The endless possibilities range from behind-the-scenes to tasting tours to private safaris.

A few of our (and our readers’) favorites include:

  • Behind the Seeds Tour

  • Wild Africa Trek

  • Keys to the Kingdom Tour

13. Explore more outside of the parks

Home to more than just shopping and some of our favorite restaurants on property, Disney Springs is full of activities that can keep you busy.

Grab a ticket to see Cirque du Soleil or take a cake decorating class at Amorette’s Patisserie. Catch a movie. Grab an ice cream and check out the live music at the mini-amphitheater. Picnic with a Frozcato (frozen Dole Whip mimosa) and a cheese plate from The Basket, the walk-up window at Wine Bar George.

The options (especially the ones with cheese!) are endless.

14. Bonus Tip

Have a blast, and don’t worry about anything. On the whole, other people visiting Disney are really friendly and like to chat on vacation, so take the opportunity to be as social or antisocial as you want.

You’re visiting the safest place in the world, and it’s full of amazing, unique ways for you to construct the best solo trip ever.

Happy (solo) travels! 🙂

Even a solo traveler needs a strategy. The Complete Parks Strategy Playbook is bursting with our best park recommendations, tried and true vacation itineraries, plus everything else you need to put the fun back into Disney planning!