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There are all kinds of things you need to do to prepare for a Disney World vacation, from making a packing list, booking a hotel, getting restaurant reservations, and finding out where to find your favorite characters.
But there’s one thing you need to prepare for that’s easy to forget …
All that walking!
After reading this post, you’ll know
- Why it’s important to prepare for walking at Disney World
- What you should do
- How to make training more fun and get the kids involved
- How to take care of your hard-working feet while at the parks
How many miles a day do you walk at Disney World?
Most sources say that you’ll walk a bare minimum of 7-8 miles per day at Disney World, and that some people walk as many as 10 miles a day.
That’s a lot of walking.
Which Disney Park has the Most Walking?
According to Disney Trippers, Here’s the rough mileage for walking around each of the Disney parks:
- Magic Kingdom — 2.2 miles
- EPCOT loop around World Showcase Lagoon — 2.8 miles
- Hollywood Studios — 1.40 miles
- Animal Kingdom — 2.3 miles
So … yeah, Epcot is where you’re probably going to walk the most. (Just circling around the World Showcase Lagoon is 1.2 miles.)
There’s really two slightly different concerns you need to prepare for:
- Physical stamina
- Sore feet
Let’s cover each of those separately …
Training for Disney World Walking
Let’s face it; a lot of us don’t exercise regularly — and even if we do, we certainly don’t walk 8+ miles per day.
So if you don’t want to sore and exhausted during your trip, you’re going to want to prepare for all that walking.
There’s no officially correct way to do this, but here are a few suggestions to get you inspired and give you a good starting point..
First of all, I suggest you start walking regularly at least 2 month before your vacation.
If you don’t normally exercise much, start slowly — maybe even just 10-15 minutes a few times a week. Consider adding 5 minutes to your walks every week until you hit a full hour of walking.
Make it more interesting by tracking your walks on a Disney countdown calendar, walking together as a family, and/or walking while listening to a Disney playlist.
Don’t forget that there are other ways to build your stamina besides walking. If you prefer something like swimming or bike riding, then by all means do that instead — or maybe mix it up with walking.
And don’t forget to stretch. I don’t mean just after your walk or bike ride (although you should do that too), but use this time before your vacation to build your flexibility in general.
Because not only do you have to walk a lot at Disney World, but you also have to stand a lot, which is a different kind of stress for your body. The less tight your muscles are, the less you’ll have to worry about low back and other muscle pain at the end of a day at the parks.
I’m a big yoga fan, and I particularly love this YouTube channel.
The instructor is encouraging and funny, and there’s a huge amount of variety in the workouts. Some are are 6 minutes long and others are almost a full hour. Some focus more on relaxation on meditation, and others do a bunch of side planks and make you feel like you’re going to die.
Even if you’re not into yoga, I highly recommend spending five minutes doing “legs up the wall” in your hotel room every day during your trip.
Legs Up the Wall (after a day of walking at Disney World)
Speaking of exercise videos on YouTube, if you have a treadmill, you can watch this video, which takes you on a 21-minute virtual walk through Magic Kingdom.
Treadmill Series: Magic Kingdom
Get Moving with Disney Family — The Incredibles
We all know that exercise is a great stress reducer, so this can be a great side benefit. Whether you’ve had a rough day at work, just got off the phone with your most difficult relative, or are starting to stress out because you still haven’t been able to get reservations of Chef Mickey, I promise that doing your daily walk or swim or yoga will make you feel a whole lot better.
The Best Shoes for Walking in Disney World
You could be a world-class athlete and still be miserable after a day at Disney if you don’t wear the right shoes and socks.
First of all, I highly recommend wearing shoes that don’t require socks (like sandals or crocs)if you can stand it.
Between the possibility of rain, rides like Splash Mountain, and the fact that your feet will get sweaty, your socks are almost certain to get wet, which is not only kinda gross but can lead to blisters.
If you really can’t live without socks, then be sure to keep an extra pair in your park bag so you can switch them out when needed.
I also like to apply Body Glide all over my feet every morning before I put on my shoes to reduce friction. (Body Glide is, by the way, the single most popular product among my readers.)
Okay, now let’s get to specific shoes.
These are the shoes that I’ve worn for my last 4-5 trips to Disney World.
No, they’re not the prettiest things in the world (years ago I got a cute orangey-red pair, but haven’t been able to find them since), but they work for me.
I really wish I liked them, because they’re much cuter and less expensive than the shoes I wear, but they just don’t feel right to me.
These are the shoes my oldest daughter wore on our last trip, and they’re quite popular too. Some people don’t like them because they have a lot of straps, but my daughter liked them a lot.
I’ve often heard that it’s good idea to pack 2 different pairs of shoes so you can switch them out, but I’ve never actually done this myself.
Oh, and one last thing — definitely break your shoes in for at least a week or two before your trip.
Did you having a Training Program Before Your Disney Trip?
Now I want to hear from you:
- Did you have an exercise regime before you went to Disney World?
- What are your favorite shoes to wear to the parks?
- Any other advice to prepare for all that walking?
Let us know below in the comments!
If you’re a fan of Disney World trivia like I am, you might be curious what the longest ride in all of Disney World is. After reading this post, you’ll know both the longest ride and the longest attraction, as well as a few runners-up. […]
Update: It’s been confirmed that ‘Ohana will reopened on Friday, July 9. You might still enjoy reading the rest of the article, though. 😊
It’s been over half a year since Walt Disney reopened its gates in July 2020, but as you already know, things are not quite back to normal yet.
There are several restaurants that still remain closed until further notice, and one of them is the very popular Ohana at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, located on the Magic Kingdom monorail loop.
What is Ohana?
‘Ohana (which means “family” in Hawaiian) is a South Pacific themed restaurant that — prior to the March 2020 closing — offered a family-style character breakfast with Lilo, Stitch, and a Hawaiian family styledinner
But, with the temporary closure of ‘Ohana at the Polynesian Resort, which typically features a family-style breakfast with Lilo, Stitch, Mickey and Pluto, as well as a delicious Hawaiian family-style dinner at night.
(If you’re wondering what “family-style,” that doesn’t mean that the meal is family friendly (although it is). Rather, it means that they bring everything on the menu to your table, and you can get seconds or thirds or whatever you like. (Our Ohana hostess described it as a “reverse buffet.”)
Whether you’re eager to get back to ‘Ohana or try it for the first time, you might be itching to know when it’ll be available again.
But first let’s talk about the Polynesian Resort in general …
Why is Polynesian Resort Closed?
After Disney World shut down in mid-March 2020, they decided to take advantage of the closing and give Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort — one of the original properties that opened with the Magic Kingdom in 1971 — a refurbishment.
The Polynesian was originally scheduled to reopen back in October of 2020, but of course that didn’t happen as planned.
At the time of this writing (late April 2021), the Polynesian is now scheduled to reopen in July 2021.
Disney announced in March 2021 that the resort is now accepting bookings for July 2021 in rooms that they describe as “featuring a new color palette inspired by the Pacific Ocean and its many islands.”
Disney went on to say:
Along with all-new furnishings and fixtures, the rooms will include details, patterns and textures from the hit Walt Disney Animation Studios film “Moana” – those who look carefully may discover several characters and references to the story … the sandy ocean floor inspires the bathroom tiles and vanity’s carved details, complementing the fresh, modern overall approach to these reimagined rooms.
The resort is also developing a dramatic new porte cochere that will enhance the arrival experience as guests pull up to its Great Ceremonial House. The inviting design features a high-pitched, open-truss roof covered in a thatch style with pops of color. The area’s new open and airy vibe will be complemented by four chandeliers inspired by glass floats, fishing nets and oversized bamboo elements mirroring the chandelier inside the lobby …
I was able to find a “sneak peek” on Pinterest:
What About the Polynesian Villas & Bungalows?
The Polynesian Resort Villas & Bungalows, which are the Disney Vacation Club section of the resort, are currently open.
I’ve never been a Disney Vacation Member and frankly don’t even know much about it (except that it’s expensive), but apparently you don’t need to be to stay at the Villas & Bungalows (assuming they have availability). So if you’re dying to stay at the Polynesian and don’t want to keep waiting, it’s an option worth looking into.
What About Kona Cafe? Is it Open?
Yes, Kona Cafe is currently open. It’s very different from ‘Ohana (no Southern Pacific theme, not family style serving, and it’s more “in the open” and less private than ‘Ohana), but I enjoyed the food there quite a bit.
Also, if you’re missing ‘Ohana’s amazing Pineapple Bread Pudding with ice cream, and banana caramel sauce, you can probably get it at Kona Cafe, depending on availability. I would suggest going during lunch, before they’re likely to run out, and possibly call ahead beforehand just to check.
Also, be aware that it’s not listed on the Kona Cafe menu, so don’t panic when you don’t see it.
Is Tambu Lounge Open?
Yup, that’s open too, with plenty of drinks and a limited menu of appetizers.
They typically serve their own version of ‘Ohana’s Bread Pudding. It’s not listed on the menu right now, but my understanding is that it’s likely to available there upon request as well. Again, I would call ahead first and check.
The Lapu Lapu, which contains rum and tropical fruit juices and is served in a pineapple, is a popular drink. It looks pretty cool, too.
So What About ‘Ohana? When Will it Reopen?
Oh yeah … that was the original question, wasn’t it?
Well, at the time of this writing (again, late April 2021), I have not been able to find anything definitive, except to hear people speculate that ‘Ohana will probably reopen when the Polynesian reopens, in late July 2021.
But even that is not a definite.
So in the meantime, you can:
- Stay in the DVC Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
- Visit either the Tambu Lounge or Kona Cafe (and hopefully get some Bread Pudding)
- Book a stay at the Polynesian Resort for late July 2021 and later
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Unicorns are big right now — and so are the chances that you know someone who is crazy about them.
Whether you’re shopping for a baby shower gift or for a teenage girl’s birthday present, this post is sure to help you find the perfect gift for the unicorn lover in your life.
✅ Personalized Unicorn Gifts for Girls
Personalized Unicorn Sequin Pillow with Name,Blinking Unicorn Blinking Personalized MugCustom Unicorn Reversible Sequin PillowUniquely Personalized Birthday BookDabbing Unicorn Coffee Mug with NamePersonalized Magical Rainbow Unicorn Blanket for Kids
Everybody likes hearing and saying their own name. Personalized gifts are a way to make your favorite unicorn-loving girl feel extra special.
Personalized Birthday Book
What could be better than reading a book starring … yourself?
This 26-page hardcover book with beautiful illustration tells the tale of your child riding a magical unicorn to a magical kingdom, where they are crowned birthday royalty.
Reviewers loved the high quality of this book and the fact that the child’s looked like it “belonged” and wasn’t just stuck in.
When I first saw this book, I assumed that the personalization was just the child’s name and birthday … but it’s actually more than that.
You can include the names of family and friends who are invited to the “royal ball” to celebrate the birthday. (This is optional.) And the dedication page can say not only who the gift is from, but also mention the child’ best qualities.
Personalized Rainbow Unicorn Blanket
This super-soft blanket is made from 100% washable fleece that can also be put in the dryer. Even better, it’s made with premium dye-sublimation materials, so the print won’t fade over time.
The blanket comes in 3 different sizes:
- Toddler — 30 x 40 inches
- Child — 50 x 60 inches
- Adult – 60 x 80 inches
Personalized Dabbing Unicorn Mug
Isn’t this mug totally cute? And guess what — the artwork is on both sides of the mug!
Oh yeah, and it gets better: it also comes with a matching coaster, giving it the feel of a “complete gift package.”
Reviewers were thrilled with both the quality of this mug and how much their gift recipients loved it.
This mom even caught her daughter sleeping with her mug!
Reversible Sequin Throw Pillow
✅ Unicorn Toys for Babies & Toddlers
You’re never too young to enjoy unicorns! These adorable toys would make great gifts for a one or two year old’s birthday.
Stuffed Princess & Castle Playset
This is such an adorable gift for a baby girl. It’s safe, soft, and self-contained. I always like how all the pieces have a different sensory element to them.
The pieces include:
- Princess crinkle doll
- Magic mirror
- Squeaker wand
- Unicorn that “neighs” when you squeeze him
They all fit inside a plush pink castle that fastens shut, making it easy to pack up and take it all with you.
Baby “Rocking Horse” Unicorn
This cute ride-on toy is designed with babies in mind and has a 3-side seat with a belt so little ones won’t lose their balance.
Yes, this is a bit of a pricey gift, but many reviewers, like Shelby, said it was worth every penny:
Can I give it 10 stars?
I bought this for my daughter’s first birthday present because of how much she loves to rock. I could barely put it together before she started trying to get on it. I kept having to tell her no and finally had to get Daddy to run interference so I could get it screwed together. She absolutely loves it. More than any of her other toys. I’ve already recommended this to others twice.
Wooden Stacking Ring Toy with Unicorn Topper
This is a much higher-quality, more visually pleasing, and slightly smaller version of the plastic Fisher Price toy that many of us had as kids.
It helps babies and toddlers develop fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and a sense of order.
The rings, and the unicorn topper, are made with real wood and coated with non-toxic varnish and waterborne paint.
Unicorn Snuggle Baby Blanket
This is a sweet, soft gift for a girl baby shower.
I know from experience that babies and toddlers will love rubbing their thumb and fingers against the silky smooth pink edging, and teething on the gold unicorn to soothe themselves.
Rock and Glow Unicorn Toy
What a clever idea — a toy that a crawling baby can chase!
This interactive toy has 2 settings:
- “Learning Mode” lets children activate different lights, music, and sound.
- “Chase Me Mode” has the unicorn rock and gallop around in different directions.
Amazon reviewer Familyof6 says this is a great toy for a baby girl around 6-12 months old:
We got this for our 6 month old daughter for Christmas and couldn’t be happier with the purchase! When she received it she couldn’t yet crawl, but is crawling now.
I would say this is probably her favorite toy right now. She loves that it lights up, plays music, rocks, and gallops!
I like that you can switch it from hard floor mode to carpet mode, because we have both. I also like that you can play with it stationary (for precrawlers) and galloping for older babies. In gallop mode, it goes QUITE far, and gently turns when it meets an obstacle.
It’s actually pretty smart for a toy- gives my Roomba a run for it’s money in not getting stuck in awkward places, haha. Overall I’m a very big fan, I would highly recommend it.
Plush Unicorn Chair
This adorable pink and teal chair is 14 x 19 x 20 inches and lightweight enough that little girl can carry it from room to room.
Several reviewers said that were surprised at how cute and durable this chair is, especially considering it’s about a fraction of the price of a children’s chair at Pottery Barn.
Amazon reviewer Angelique D. says this is her daughter’s favorite chair:
We were looking to purchase a chair for our daughter to sit in while reading her books. She currently has a fixation on all things unicorns. This chair has checked both of these boxes. She uses the chair multiple times throughout the day to read her multiple books.
The chair is made of a plush material that is soft and washes well. I recommend cutting off the tags so as to not be something kids see as a toy. Our daughter is weighing 25 lbs. and is 32 inches tall. There is plenty of room for her to continue to grow into this chair.
Unicorn Toys & Gifts for 3-6 Year Old Girls
Plush Unicorn Rainbow CarrierLarge Inflatable Hopping Pink UnicornBaby and Mommy 4-piece UnicornUnicorn Apron & Cookie Cutter Baking SetUnicorn Foam Pogo Jumper for Ages 3 & UpUnicorn Gift Set – Includes Book, Stuffed Plush Toy, and Headband
Unicorn Baking Set for Girls
This is a great age to start baking, and little girls will love how these baking tools are just the size to fit their hands.
This kit includes:
- 5 cookie cutters (unicorn, rainbow, cloud, ice cream cone, and magic wand)
- Machine-washable children’s apron
- Child-size roller
- 2 stainless steel frosting tips
- 2 plastic frosting couplers
- 2 reusable frosting bags
Amazon reviewer Nancy Jackson was impressed with the quality of the pieces:
Bought the Unicorn set and the Fox set for my grandkids and they LOVED, LOVED, LOVED them!!
The sets are so cute and the quality is great – something you would expect from a high end children’s boutique. Comes with everything you need! They saw the Snowman [set] and definitely want that one for Christmas. These are great gifts! I highly recommend.
Best Beginner Baking Sets for Kids
Pink Pogo Stick for Preschool Girls
Have you ever thought a pogo stick looked so much fun, only to be disappointed when you tried and fell right off after one or two hops?
Well, this foam pogo stick was created so that little kids could jump with no problem, either indoors or outdoors.
This toy squeaks every time your child jumps … which they might love, but you might not.
Magical Unicorn Gift Set
This is the perfect gift for a girl this age who is just crazy about unicorns.
This 3-piece set comes in a polka-dot gift box with a pink satin ribbon and includes:
- A rhyming book called If I Were a Magical Unicorn
- A super-soft plush unicorn
- A child-size adjustable unicorn headband
Unicorn & Vet Set Interactive Toy
Do you know a girl who wishes they had their own pet unicorn? Then this is the gift for her!
Amazon reviewer Katherine M. did a much better job of reviewing this toy that I ever could, so I’ll simply share with you what she said:
This unicorn is absolutely adorable! My 6 year old daughter loves her and hasn’t stopped playing with her. I have to say I wasn’t sure when I saw the picture online because I thought her face looked kind of weird but she is really sweet in person if you have the same concerns.
Her eyes are a sparkly blue with little hearts. My daughter loved finding out that she has horseshoes on the bottom of her feet. Her fur is especially soft and my daughter loves having her on her lap to pet where she makes sweet happy sounds like a happy cat. Her eyes blink which really makes her seem very alive and endearing …
There is a switch to change modes from from normal to vet mode where you can care for her which is my daughter’s favorite setting. Her horn changes colors so you can see how she is feeling. My daughter is loving caring for her.
She comes with accessories to use and interact with her.
- The “Furmometer” is a thermometer that goes in her mouth and she closes her eyes and makes sucking sounds.
- She has a bottle with “uni drops” that you can also give her and she will make happy sounds.
- The “Sparkle Scope” when placed on her heart will make machine like beeps.
- Her “Dream Cream” when applied to her heart-shape boo-boo will make her giggle.
- She also comes with a bandage cuff to apply to her leg.
If you are careful opening up all the packaging there is a small cardboard doctor bag that can be used to store her smaller accessories. She also comes with a small Get Well Certificate.
This toy has really impressed me. It is a lot of fun and my daughter absolutely loves it. This Unicorn is absolutely endearing and magical to watch. This would make a great gift and I could see it being a hugely popular Christmas gift.
Unicorn Hooded Bathrobe and Slippers
Unicorn Picture Books for Preschoolers
Picture books are always fun, in my opinion. They can also make a nice companion piece to go with the “bigger” gift.
Here are several unicorn books to choose from:
✅ Unicorn Toys/Gifts for ages 7-11
Paint Your Own Unicorn:, Includes Acrylic & Metallic Paints, Gemstones, Glitter, Sticker Sheet, Paint BrushUnicorn Vet Set – Interactive Pet UnicornCraft-tastic String Art Kit – Unicorn EditionUnicorn Slime KitMonopoly Unicorns Vs. Llamas Board GameNo-Sew Unicorn Pillow Kit
Paint & Decorate Your Own Unicorns Kit
This set comes with two plaster unicorns (one a unicorn head and the other a full unicorn and rainbow), so it could make a nice activity for sisters to do together, or a fun “Mom & Me” project.
The set contains 2 paintbrushes, metallic and neon paints, stickers, glue, glitter, sequins, and gemstones — so there’s plenty of room for creativity.
Unicorn String Art Craft Kit
This is a different kind of craft that also makes a nice wall hanging when you’re finished.
It comes with two different canvases, one with a unicorn design and the other with a heart design. Also includes are different types and colors of thread and yarn, string, glitter paper, felt — and push pins, so you don’t need to use a hammer or nails to display the finished artwork.
No-Sew Unicorn Pillow Kit
This pillow makes a cute piece of bedroom decor and is easy enough that a tween girl can make it herself without any adult help.
The kit includes:
- Pillowcase with metallic fabric gold horn and ears
- Pastel fleece tassels
- Decorative flowers
- Unicorn eyelashes
- Polyfill stuffing
- Step-by-step instructions
Unicorn Slime Kit
** This kit is Amazon’s Choice in the category “Girl Gifts Age 8.” **
The kit contains:
- Clay for Butter Slime
- Floam beads
- Food Coloring
- Flake glitter
- Snow powder
- Cutting and mixing tools
- Storage Containers
In addition, you’re given access to online video instructions as well as written instructions.
Amazon reviewer NikiNerdette was impressed by the quality and customer service:
I ordered this product for my 8 year old daughter and her best friend for a slumber party and we were blown away by the quality. We have since purchased all the other slime kits from Original Stationary, they provide exceptional customer service by answering all emailed questions, and the how-to books included in their kits are top-notch.
Everything needed comes in the box, and the box is great for storage, we now have a stack in our crafts area. Will definitely order more in the future, as you can see from the attached picture, my daughter is a slime making pro now (gloves and all)!
Unicorns vs. Llamas Monopoly Board Game
This cute version of the classic board game has Team Unicorn playing against Team Llama with pastel-colored tokens. Instead of buying properties, your team claims titles like “Most Huggable,” Most Charming,” or “Twinkliest Eyes.”
Amazon reviewer Tiffanie says this is a fun game for the entire family:
This is a really fun game. I’d say it’s best for ages 7+ The were a few things that weren’t explained well in the rules, but we were able to decide the rules ourselves and move on with the game.
Compared to original monopoly, game play is faster and more competitive, players are sorted into teams, and there were lots of laughs as chance cards include fun ways to get ahead or bring the opposing team down.
Musical Unicorn Jewelry Box
Unicorn Gifts for Teen Girls
Hey, there’s nothing wrong with still loving unicorns once you’re a teenager (or even an adult, for that matter.)
Several of the gifts in this section would probably make good gifts for younger girls as well, but I put them here because they wouldn’t be too childish for a teenager.
4-Piece Unicorn Jewelry Set
This set includes a:
- Pair of earrings
all inside a cute gift box.
The jewelry in this set is mad of premium alloy with stainless steel chains, so it won’t make your skin turn funny colors or itch. The pendants are decorated with sparkling rainbow crystals.
Unicorn Flower Planter Pot
I love this planter pot — it’s so sweet and practical. At four and a quarter inches tall, it’s just the right size for cacti, succulents, mini flower plants, or even an indoor herb garden. (The plants are not included.)
Mystical Effects Lipstick in Unicorn Tears
If you know a teenage girl who loves both unicorn and experimenting with makeup, this is the perfect gift for them.
If you’re like me and wondering what “unicorn tear lipstick” is, it’s a glittery lipstick with a blue/pink shimmery hue.
Here’s a clip of a detailed review left by Amazon reviewer Hope Pusher:
… The color is mostly a frosted cotton candy pink/light lavender color with lots of shiny, sky blue glitter particles that shimmer brightly in the light … I love the beautiful iridescence and smooth sheen of this lipstick.
… it’s a lot of fun, particularly if you’re going out for the night with friends, or if you have a date to impress …
… Unicorns, pastel colors and iridescence are a super popular theme right now and this lipstick is one of the best representations of that. I made a short video for you guys so you could see what the lipstick really looks like when you apply it on your bare lips.
More Toys & Gift Ideas for Kids
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