How to Keep Cool at Disney
Here at Florida Travel with Kids, you know we love theme parks! The thing about theme parks in Florida is, well, they can be HOT! And one of the things I hear people talking about the most is how to keep cool at Disney World and Universal Orlando.
We have personally spent many days wandering around Disney. Some of those days have been warm. Others have been scorching. And maybe one was cooler. I may be close to being an expert on beating the heat at Disney.
I can’t guarantee that my tips will make you feel like you are in Antarctica. But you probably won’t feel like sitting in the boat on the “It’s a Small World” ride all day. (Yes, people have been known to do something like that when trying to keep cool at Disney!)
So, what do you need to know about how to beat the heat at Disney? Let’s get to the how to stay cool at Disney tips now.
Best Time to Visit Disney to avoid the heat
Okay, so we all know that Disney World is here in Florida. We already established that. You are probably also aware that Florida is hot most of the year.
Yes, the months of December, January, and February are considered winter in Florida. However, Florida’s winters contain springlike temperatures from many other states. So, while 65-70 degrees may be cold to Floridians, you may still be warm.
It can be better to visit during those months, especially since you shouldn’t encounter too many 90+ degree days. That said, 90+ degree days in the winter can and do happen!
At Disney, dress like me, not like Kylo Ren!
Many people have no choice but to visit Disney during the hottest summer days.
No matter when you visit, you should always be prepared with ways to keep cool at Disney.
What to Wear to Beat the Heat at Disney
You probably know you should wear shorts, t-shirts, or tank tops while visiting Disney. This is what you would wear when it is hot outside back home.
There are other things you can ensure you are wearing, though, when trying to keep cool at Disney.
Carefully choose your fabrics.
As you pick out shorts and t-shirts to wear at Disney, try sticking with moisture-wicking options or 100% cotton. The humidity in Florida can make you feel sweaty as soon as you step outside.
Moisture-wicking clothing dries much faster, but some people feel more comfortable in 100% cotton clothing.
Wear Light Colors
Your clothing should also be light in color. Darker colors attract the sun more, making you feel even hotter. If you don’t believe me, put your hand on a white car in the heat and try doing the same to a black car. Or don’t, because the black car might almost burn you.
This may seem like such a small thing. But after walking around Disney all day, you will be happy with all the relief you can get.
Wear a Hat
Hats can help keep the sun off of your face. You may not think this will help. It will, though, since your face won’t get sunburned as quickly.
I recommend wearing a hat that has vent holes in it. The extra circulation will keep your head from sweating in the heat. My favorite hats even have room for a ponytail, providing the best of both worlds with additional protection + a ponytail.
Wear Comfortable and Breathable Shoes
Wearing a pair of flip-flops or sandals might seem like the best option when visiting Disney. After all, they keep your feet cool, right?! Well, they may do that, but they won’t offer the support you need for lots of walking.
It is much better to choose a pair of sandals similar to sneakers. I prefer Teva Sandals. In fact, our entire family has a pair!
Other Options for How to Keep Cool at Disney
Now that you know what type of clothes, shoes, and hats to wear while at Disney, you may be wondering what else you can do to beat the heat.
Well, you do have a few other options. You need to be prepared and ensure you have specific items when you arrive.
The sun is always shining at Disney. Yes, the sun can be out even in the middle of a rainstorm. If you happen to be at Disney, and the sun isn’t out, there is probably a good chance the park will be closed due to bad storms.
One of the best ways to keep the sun out of your eyes is to wear sunglasses. It is best to have a pair that offer excellent UV protection. But honestly, any pair of sunglasses will do.
Cooling towels have been out for a few years now. They are an absolute game-changer when it comes to keeping cool at Disney.
Wet the towel, wring it out, and place it around your neck. Your body temperature will begin to cool down almost instantly.
The best part about cooling towels is you can easily re-wet them throughout the day.
Please make sure you have a cooling towel for every member of your family. You know you won’t see one yourself all day long if you don’t.
Oh, and wetting a regular towel will not have the same result. Plus, those are bulky and cumbersome when lugging them around wet.
As you are beating the heat at Disney, you must stay hydrated. This is simple to do when you bring your own reusable water bottles.
Fill your water bottles throughout the day. Just remember to drink as you walk from one part of the park to another.
You may not have seen misting fans in a while. However, they still exist and are perfect for staying cool at Disney.
I recommend purchasing smaller misting fans that can be hung around your neck. When using your fans, make sure you are not near anyone else. For some reason, not everyone loves getting wet from a fan!
Oh, and if you forget your fan, don’t hesitate to ask a person holding a fan if they can spray you. They might be happy to help you out for a moment.
The sun in Florida is vital. It is simple to get burned before lunchtime if you forget to apply sunscreen. It is best to use it multiple times throughout the day.
The other reason I recommend wearing plenty of sunscreen is you won’t feel cool at all once you get sunburned. Unless you get burnt, your body will feel cold from damaged skin.
Since you might take a trip to a beach near Orlando, make sure to choose a reef-safe sunscreen!
Bonus Tips for How to Beat the Heat at Disney
You may think you are golden when you arrive at Disney with the proper clothing and accessories. It will be easy to beat the heat, right?
Well, yes and no.
There are a few other things you may want to consider when you are trying to stay cool at Disney.
Try Disney Genie+
Some rides at Disney offer a little time away from the sun while waiting in line because the queues are indoors. Then there are those rides, like Thunder Mountain, where the line is only outdoors.
When trying to beat the heat in Disney, I recommend using Genie+ for any ride with an outdoor line queue. This will allow you to skip the line and the abundance of heat and sunshine.
It is important to note that not all rides are eligible for Genie+. It is still an excellent option if you don’t want to stand in the sun for an hour waiting for your turn on an eligible ride.
Watch Certain Shows in the Middle of the Day
The sun, usually the heat, is worst during the middle of the day. This is the perfect time to watch shows either in the shade or inside (AKA… with air conditioning).
You will love feeling much cooler as you enjoy the show and a break from the heat.
Head to Your Resort for a Midday Break
There is nothing wrong with heading back to your resort for a break in the middle of the day. You can take a nap in your air-conditioned room. Or go swimming in the pool. This is an excellent time to schedule a meal at the resort’s restaurant.
If you decide to do this at Disney, you will want to choose your resort carefully. Resorts closer to the park you are visiting are better for obvious reasons. After all, you don’t want to waste an hour or more trying to get back to your room.
I love choosing a Skyliner resort because the Skyliners stay cool (even though they are not air-conditioned!) and are the most fun way to get around. Learn more at 7 things to know about the Disney Skyliner.
We have an entire blog post with the closest Disney Resorts to the Parks, but you can also check out the short version here:
The resorts closest to the Magic Kingdom
- Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
- Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa
- Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
The closest Disney Resorts to Hollywood Studios
The closest Disney Resorts to EPCOT
- Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
- Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resort
- Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort
The closest Disney Resorts to Animal Kingdom
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
- Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort
- Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort
- Disney’s All-Star Music Resort
Enjoy a Sit-Down Lunch or Dinner
One of the best ways to beat the heat and stay fueled is to enjoy a sit-down lunch or dinner. I recommend choosing a restaurant that has air conditioning.
You can choose a restaurant back at your resort-like I mentioned above. Or you can select one of the restaurants at the Disney park you visit.
It is best to reserve your table for lunch as soon as possible. These restaurants fill up quickly, especially on the year’s hottest days.
Request Ice Water
Yes, I know I told you to bring water bottles to the park. One of the best ways to fill those water bottles is by asking for ice water at any quick service station. Ask for cups of ice water, and the staff will hand them over. Then empty those cups into your water bottles and head out on your next adventure!
This is also excellent advice if you forget your water bottles or want something cold to drink.
How to beat the heat at Disney World
I hope these tips for staying cool at Disney World help plan your Disney vacation.
Looking for more Disney Travel tips or other Orlando theme park tips? Check out:
- 25 Free Things at Disney World
- Things to do at Hollywood Studios
- 15 Amazing Volcano Bay Tips and Volcano Bay Hacks
- First Timer Tips for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter
- Star Wars Land vs. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
- Marriott Cypress Harbour Villas Review near Universal and Disney
- Where to find Dole Whip at Disney World
Planning your Disney vacation
I recommend booking with a Disney Travel Agent if you want to work with a Disney Travel Agent! Did you know that Amy (the mom and writer of this blog) is a certified Disney Travel Agent? It’s true! You can request more information via her travel website contact form.
I highly recommend buying tickets through Undercover Tourist if you choose not to use a Travel Agent. There are a lot of really scammy sites out there, so make sure you’re booking through an approved partner (like Undercover Tourist) or an approved Travel Agent!
If you plan to stay off property, I recommend checking out Expedia. to see what is available in the Orlando area outside the Disney Resorts.
About Florida Travel With Kids
Florida Travel with Kids was started by a family who loves to travel the state of Florida with kids! This site will help you explore the fun state of Florida and all of the kid-friendly activities you’ll find here.
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