Often, a Walt Disney World visit can feel like a marathon, rushing the family from one attraction and reservation to the next at exhausting speed. A vacation isn’t a vacation unless you get some time to sit back, relax, and enjoy the moment. Whether you’re an introvert looking to bask in the still moments or a tired parent needing to catch your breath, here are eight of our favorite Walt Disney World attractions to turn down the speed and chill out.
1. The Tomorrowland PeopleMover
There is possibly no attraction at Walt Disney World more loved by loyal fans than the Tomorrowland Peoplemover—and in so many ways it’s an unlikely candidate for such dedicated affection. Casual guests might miss it entirely if they never look up, and it doesn’t offer any thrills, sweeping movie tie-ins, or a particularly deep story. However, the beauty of the Peoplemover isn’t in any of the traditional factors we expect from Walt Disney World attractions. Maybe it’s the sweeping views of Tomorrowland and Cinderella Castle. Maybe it’s the seamlessly smooth motion of the vehicles or the freedom of not being strapped to a seat. Maybe it’s in the peaceful transitions in and out of Tomorrowland’s most beloved attractions. Whatever makes the PeopleMover dear to your heart, you aren’t alone, and it remains one of our favorite places to relax anywhere in Walt Disney World.
2. Spaceship Earth
A visit to Epcot just doesn’t feel complete without a journey through the history of communication on Spaceship Earth. While much in Epcot has changed over the years, Spaceship Earth remains a crown jewel of Disney dark rides. You can experience this Future World mainstay a dozen times and find something new each ride (you can even try it in another language or add your own soundtrack if you bring in ear headphones). Spaceship Earth tells a story so beautifully immersive that you can’t help but get lost in it’s mesmerizing sights and smells. Seriously, a “Burning of Rome” candle might be a little macabre, but Disney needs to get on the ball and let us take home that intoxicating scent!
3. The aviaries in the Maharajah Jungle Trek and Pangani Forest Trail
Disney has plenty of wonderfully chill walking tours, but one spot in Disney’s Animal Kingdom stands a hair above the rest. The aviaries in the Majarajah Jungle Trek and Pangani Forest Trail are two of our favorite places in Walt Disney World to just find a place to perch and listen to the birds sing. You never know what to expect in these serene menageries. On one visit, we watched weaver birds assemble their nests (with no small amount of adorable thievery and squabbling). On another visit, one of the aviary’s larger denizens took to calling back and forth with a young visitor. Sometimes, when the park is less busy, the resident birds become more inquisitive and may approach guests who sit quietly. Instead of squeezing onto another blink-and-you’ll-miss-the-baby-elephant ride on Kilamanjaro Safari, next time you visit Disney’s Animal Kingdom, take a moment to enjoy the beauty of this hidden Asian oasis.