For All Your Disney Vacation Needs

Tony's Town Square


























One of the few restaurants at Walt Disney World that often gets a so-so or even downright bad
reviews is Tony's Town Square. I finally decided to check it out with my best friend to see if the reviews hold any truth.

Conveniently located inside the Magic Kingdom it's easy to get to and diminishes travel time by  not having to head outside the park. If you aren't sure where it's located, right after you walk through the train station, head into the Exposition hall on the right hand side.   Back when I was a cast member this was where you could have fun photos taken in front of a green screen as well as get all your camera supplies...you know, like film?

Best Magic Kingdom Rides for EVERYONE

Magic Kingdom is obviously the most popular of the four Walt Disney World Resort parks...and for good reason! This is the park everyone thinks of when you say Disney AND it has the most family friendly rides! Let's talk about what rides everyone can go on and what rides may exclude certain family members for one reason or another.



The following is a list of 12 rides that do not have a height requirement and the whole family can enjoy together! This doesn't even include the many shows, parades, character meet and greets and more that your whole family can experience together at Disney's Magic Kingdom!

Traveling to Walt Disney World With Grandparents

Let's say you are in a position like we have been...the grandparents are coming along and either one or both of them are not huge Disney nuts. They are coming because they want to experience something special with the kids, help out or maybe even just get a way for a bit (even if it is Disney). Let's talk about some things you can do to make the trip enjoyable for everyone!


Walt Disney World Resort Types


With just under 30 on property resorts (not including nearby Disney Springs hotels, Bonnet Creek or the Four Seasons) it can be hard to figure out just which resort is right for your family! To get started, let's talk about the difference in resort categories; Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Deluxe Villa

My Favorite Things- Counter Service


I'm excited to start sharing a new series all about my favorite things at Walt Disney World (and maybe even Disney Cruise). For the first installment, we are going to talk about my favorite quick service restaurants! These are in no particular order and there might not be one for every park..remember these aren't just generalized recommendations but my personal favorites!!

Top 5 Reasons to Stay at Disney's Yacht and Beach Club

While a Deluxe resort is not always in the budget, there are so many great benefits to staying at an EPCOT area resort they should definitely be considered.  Beach Club is a favorite of mine and it's one I often recommend to clients.  Remember with discounts you can often save up to 30% off this amazing resort's regular rates!

Senses Spa

One of my favorite, adult only things to experience about a Disney Cruise is the Senses Spa. On the Disney Fantasy and Dream it's slightly different and since the Fantasy is my FAVORITE ship, I'll be talking about that version today.

Junior Bloggers Wanted!



Do you have kids that just love to share all about your Disney vacations?  I am currently looking for Jr. Bloggers that have a story to tell!  No age restrictions, simply contact me at amanda@livingwiththemagic.com.  There is really no limit or restrictions. Have them (or you) type up their story, feel free to add photos and then they'll see their story published right here!  I look forward to hearing all about Disney from a child's perspective!!

Why you need a Travel Agent When Planning a Walt Disney World Wedding!


One of my favorite parts about being a travel agent that specializes in Disney destinations is weddings and honeymoons! Not only do I get to plan some awesome honeymoons BUT I also get to work with some amazing couples, acting as their Fairytale Travel Liason! Our position  Fairytale Travel liaison's were born out of a necessity, and something that I didn't have when planning my Fairytale wedding. Let's talk about what happens when you decide to have a destination wedding!

Guest Post - Disney Cruise to Alaska


There is so much to see and do on an Alaskan Disney Cruise. We all know of the amazing things to do on the fabulous Disney Cruise line ships, but what about the  excursions? We did two excursions that I will NEVER forget and would love to share with you.



Mommy, Mommy and Me - Trip Planning

I always find the shorter the trip, the harder it is to plan.  I wrote about starting the plan this trip a few weeks ago and so many things have changed!  For Disney fans any trip is a great one, but having just 3 nights and 2 day park tickets make it feel SO hard to squeeze everything in. This is a big reason I recommend to first time visitors a 5 night resort stay (minimally). It's so  much less stressful to stay longer and spread everything out then it is to squeeze it in to just a few days!


Girls Getaway Weekend...how it works!

You've been hearing us talk a lot about Girls Getaway Weekend...but what is it? How does it work? Who's going?



10 Things I do for Free!


1. Help you select the best resort for your families needs!
With almost 30 on-site resorts the choices can quickly become overwhelming! I'll help you sort through the options and find a resort that fits your budget and needs.  I can quickly provide you detailed information on bedding types, amenities included, restaurants, pools and more!!

2. When it comes to Magic Your Way packages there are so many components...let me help you select the perfect number of days for your family!
If you've never visited Walt Disney World before you might be surprised to learn it's not just an amusement park..in fact it's not an amusement park at all but FOUR theme parks spanning 40 square miles...roughly the size of San Fransisco! I can help you determine the perfect amount of time to fit your budget AND see and do all the amazing things that Disney has to offer.

3. Do you need any of the ticket add-on's? Let me help you decide!
Walt Disney World tickets can be confusing..what exactly do you  need an how do they work? I'll walk you through everything to ensure you are spending money where you need to be and aren't buying things that don't work for your family.

4.Dining Plan? Quick-service, Plus, Deluxe, Premium, Platinum… what do all these mean? 
Do you need a dining plan? If so, which one? What do the dining plans cover, how much do they cost and how do you use them?  I have all the info and will ensure you are completely prepared for your trip before you even arrive.

5. Navigate the My Disney Experience website and try to figure out how to register and link reservations, customize and order Magic Bands 
Disney's website can be tricky to maneuver. I'll send you all the instructions you need to correctly set up your account as well as link your reservations. I have a background in IT which can be super helpful if you find yourself struggling with Disney's site!

6. Research Memory Maker; add it to your package if you think it’s for you...
What is Memory Maker? Why would you want? How do you get it and is it even worth it?  A quick chat with me will help clear all of that up!
7. Stay on top of the current discounts and promotions, do the math to see which promotion could save you money, wait on hold for hours to apply the discount to your reservation...and more!
How often will someone save you time and money...FOR FREE? I'll not only monitor all discounts but I'll make sure you get the best one if Disney released more than one.   I'll also let you know if a resort change would save you money AND spend hours on the phone making the change for you!

8. Set up your airport transfers!
FREE Transfers...that's right! Disney offers FREE transfers! Simply send me your flight info and I'll get the flight info over to Disney and reserve your spot on Magical Express.

9. Order special event tickets
Thinking of attending a special event, like Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party or Mickey's Very Merry Christmas party? I'll take care of that and even link the tickets to your account!

10. Remember when your final payment is due 
Sometimes planning your vacation to early makes it easy to forget when your final payment is due. We make it super easy and send a reminder prior to your due date!

Do you have HOURS of free time to do all this for your vacation? If not, comment below and I can help you out!


Blast From The Past- Cruise to Galveston Embarkation


Good Morning!! I'm sure you are all ready for me to actually get on the cruise so you can see the interesting pictures right?? Well I'm getting there today, I promise!

Read Day 1 HERE!

Saturday morning we got up fairly early (and sorry to our neighbors who heard the baby crying off and on all night!). Despite not enough sleep in the last 24 hours, we were hanging in there. We all went downstairs for breakfast...and it was great! They had an awesome spread for breakfast and we even enjoyed some Texas shaped waffles!! Not as good as Mickey shaped waffles but still...

Animal Kingdom With A Toddler

Animal Kingdom is one of our favorite places to be. You've heard me talk about it on the blog numerous times, our wedding reception was held here...it's just a place we love to hang out, eat and of course, see all the attractions!




A Few of My Favorite Things!


It happens fairly frequently in my line of work, that I'm asked what my favorite things at Disney are...my favorite rides, my favorite snacks, my favorite places to eat.  In the spirit of my favorite things, I'm starting a new weekly series called...My Favorite Things!  Each week I'll focus on a different topic and share with you, my personal favorites around Walt Disney World (and sometimes beyond)!  Stay tuned for my first in the installment...my favorite Quick Service locations in each park!

Blast from the Past

I've decided to re-post our trip from a few years ago...four to be exact. Why? Because Disney has some great prices sailing out of Galveston over the next few months! Our cruise from Galveston a few years ago was a blast and these posts included tips and hints about:

  • Cruising From Galveston (including getting the ship and where to stay)
  • Cruising with a baby
  • What to do on a 7-night cruise
  • Much more!!
Here we go! I hope you all enjoy!


Girls Getaway Weekend Deadlines

If you are thinking of coming to Girls Getaway Weekend, be sure to check out our deadlines!! Full pricing and details are available at:  http://www.livingwiththemagic.com/girls_weekend/


Trails End Breakfast Review

One of my favorite new experiences from last fall's Very Dapper Girls Getaway, was our breakfast at Trail's End!

Stay, Play and Dine




Offer Details

Book Through
December 21, 2016
 Valid Travel Dates 
Stays most nights January 1, 2017 through March 7, 2017
Length of Stay Requirements
  • Minimum – 3 nights
  • Maximum – 14 nights
Important Details
  • Sample package savings is based on 2 adults, 1 junior and 1 child for a 5-night/6-day room.
  • The number of packages allocated for this offer is limited.
  • Length of stay requirements may apply.
  • Tickets and Options must be used within 14 days of first use.
  • Must purchase a Walt Disney Travel Co. room and ticket package, and must mention the offer when calling to book. Must use a valid Disney Visa Card or Disney Rewards Redemption Card to pay the deposit.
  • Some table-service restaurants may have limited or no availability at time of package purchase.
  • Everyone in the same room must be on the same package.
Offer Restrictions
  • Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion
  • Advance reservation required.
  • Excludes alcoholic beverages and gratuities.
  • Children ages 3 to 9 must choose from the children’s menu, if available.
  • Offer excludes campsites, 3-bedroom villas, Disney's Art of Animation Resort –The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows.

Trader Sams and Kona Cafe Review

One of the highlights of my fall 2015 trip was definitely a visit to check out the new Polynesian Lobby as well as Trader Sams, followed by dinner at Kona Cafe. This visit was a trip of new experiences and while I have been to Kona Cafe, it was about 6 years ago.



We had spent a full day in the parks so after a quick rest at our resort, we changed our clothes and headed out to the Polynesian.

Guest Review - The Boathouse

We've had the pleasure of eating and drinking at one of the newest restaurants in Disney Springs, The Boathouse.  We've walked in right off the street and sat at the bar and at the surrounding first come first serve tables.  We've had reservations a couple times and one time even walked up and got a table immediately.  At first the Disney Dining app did not allow for reservations, however it does now.
Photo From https://www.flickr.com/photos/rain0975/

Splitsville






There are so many fun things to do around the Walt Disney World Resort that don't require the purchase of a park ticket. You could spend an entire week enjoying the various activities, food, stores and more around the resort!

At Disney Springs you can enjoy a little throw back to a by gone era by heading to Splitsville Luxury Lanes.  This establishment opened a few years ago to rave reviews!  Not in the mood for bowling? No worries, you can head here to just have a bite to eat OR you can eat and bowl!

Monday Savings Monday - Shipping to the Resort


I'm a huge fan of Disney dining plan...it's a convention way to prepay for your meals AND save a little money along the way.  Even with all the yummy food that comes with the plan, we often find that there are a few things we could save on if we purchased them elsewhere and in advance.   You have a few different options when pre-ordering items.

La Hacienda Dinner Review

One of the things I probably blog most about is my favorite restaurant at EPCOT...maybe even all of Walt Disney World....La Hacienda!  Today I'm going to review the restaurant in general but our most recent visit was this past March and May!


Expectations of Disney

Lately I see more and more negative posts around the internet regarding Disney...or more like what Disney is doing wrong. There are two problems I see with this...

Contemporary Resort Tour

One of the few resorts left on my bucket list is Disney's Contemporary Resort and Bay Lake Towers at Disney's Contemporary Resort. While I haven't stayed here for  vacation, I was able to go on a tour of both the Villas and The Main Tower!


Photo from https://www.flickr.com/photos/christiantlambert/


Walt Disney World Costume Guidelines

Great guidelines for this year's Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween party and Run Disney Events!


Top 5 Reasons I love Disney's Dining Plan

Disney's Dining plans are among the hot topics you'll come across when planning a Walt Disney World Vacation...along with EPCOT is just for adults, Animal Kingdom is a half day park and pool hopping.  For those of you who follow the blog, it's no surprise I'm a fan of the Disney Dining Plan. You can find several articles throughout the blog dedicated to just that. Today I want to talk about why my family and I love the plan.



Nahtazu

The biggest comment I get from clients is, I don't want to go to Animal Kingdom because we have a zoo locally.  Guess what? Disney's Animal Kingdom is...Nahtazu!!  Years ago there was an ad that ran on the Disney resort tv's that advertised this fun slogan to let people know just that...it's NOT A ZOO!



Living The Dream Happily Ever After

One of my favorite parts of my job is when we get to help Brides and Groom's being their Happily Ever After!  Whether it be helping their guests attend their destination Disney wedding or helping to plan their magical honeymoon, I love it all!



Part of my job is as a Fairytale Travel Liason...So I bet you are saying, "But wait! What is Fairytale Travel liaison IS!" Fairytale Travel liaison's were born out of a necessity, and something that I didn't have when planning my Fairytale wedding. Let's talk about what happens when you decide to have a destination wedding!

The Best Stroller for Walt Disney world


Ahhh the great stroller debate! Do you bring one, rent one or skip it all together? Today I'm going to share with you a little bit about what we do and what stroller we love!



10 tips for Magic Kingdom with Toddlers

I think for most,  it's pretty obvious that Magic Kingdom is a toddler friendly park. I think maybe of all the parks this is the most obvious choice. Not only is it what most people think of when you say Walt Disney World BUT it has hands down the most family friendly rides!



Creative Countdown Giveaway

A few weeks ago I came across this adorable countdown while surfing Facebook. I decided to purchase one so I could share with you...and it's so neat I'm giving it away! Enter below!  You have until Saturday at 8 p.m. E.S.T. Good luck!





a Rafflecopter giveaway

Iced Coffee Float Review



One of my favorite little known treats comes from Auntie Gravity's in Tomorrowland!!  This is a delicious little treat for those hot nights!! One of my favorite things to do is wander around the Magic Kingdom in the twilight hours. Everything is lite up and so beautiful!  This is also our favorite place to have a date night! We grab a few coffee's and walk around!

Drinking Around the World

A few years ago I was traveling to Disney with my brother. I wanted to get him a unique gift for Christmas that year. I ended up giving him the gift of, "Drinking Around the World". What? That's a gift!! Let me explain!



This was back in 2007, so I created a tri-fold brochure. The inside included a suggested drink for each country. The back, had a line for each country where he could obtain a signature from the Cast Member as he ordered his drink! I also gave him some Disney Dollars to help fund his experience (RIP Disney Dollars).

Top 5 Reasons to Cruise With Little One's

My daughter took her very first Disney Cruise at just 17 months old. We had snagged an unbelievable rate and couldn't pass it up! We enjoyed 7 full nights on the Disney Magic to the Caribbean! Read along to see the top 5 reasons that it wasn't the disaster we feared it might be! We discovered that a Disney Cruise was a great vacation for our little family and can’t wait to take her again!



Autograph Books

Autograph books are a necessity for our trips. It started a few years ago and every year we find a new version, always on Etsy. I'm so excited to share with you this year's autograph books!


Our Disney Home

About a year ago we relocated our entire family from Upstate New York to Virginia. We love where we live and after a year of renting we finally closed on our new-to-us-home.  While we have a long way to go updating it to our tastes, we've started making it "ours" and of course that means Disney touches!!




Guest Review - Akershus

A great and often overlooked alternative to Cinderella’s Royal Table
-By Heather B.

Photo from Flikr Account Harsh Light 


Go....Live Your Dreams!

As we plan for another trip to Disney, I reflect on WHY we keep returning.  We recently got back from an amazing trip to Walt Disney World this past March! For this particular trip we opted to just take our oldest (which I'll talk about in another blog post).   Kennedy is almost 5 years old and has an incredible imagination...combined with a lot of energy and a spunky personality,  I hear about other families who travel to Disney and once is enough...I was thinking about why some kids love Disney, while others can take it or leave it. I believe, like with a lot of kids, Kennedy loves Disney so  much because she is literally living out her imagination and dreams!

She can be a race car driver...



A Mermaid...

Part of Their World

During our upcoming Mommy/Nana/Kiddo trip to Walt Disney World, we went through our usual process of picking a resort. We started value, since it's just a 3 day trip and we are on a budget.   I let my daughter look through the value resorts as we discussed the "next" trip we would take...someday.  She immediately was drawn to All Star Movies, especially the Toy Story Section. Let's discuss how we ended up booking Art of Animation and WHY!

Packing for Alaska

I've said it time and time again but Alaska was one of my favorite vacations...but it was also the hardest to pack for. I want to shed some light on what you can expect as far as weather and what types of clothing you should bring.

Alaskan cruises occur in the summer which means milder temperatures...but it's Alaska right? Always snowing and cold? Nope! In fact there were a few days it was warmer in Alaska than back home in New York!


Families of 5

A common problem when it comes to accommodations at Walt Disney World, and even on a Disney Cruise, is where can a family of 5 stay without breaking the bank?  Due to Fire Code, many Disney resorts limit the number of occupants to just 4 people. There are a  few exceptions however.



Girls Getaway Weekend Special Event

One of my favorite parts about planning Girls Getaway Weekend is planning ours special event. I love seeing all the way Disney can make our event even more spectacular than what we have already planned.    This year was no different!!