I live 30 minutes from the Walt Disney World parks so I often take it for granted that I can just swing by whenever I want to get my Disney fix. With the closing of the Disney parks across the globe, there will be a lot of people really missing Disney at the moment, myself included. Whether you’ve had a trip cancelled or you just really miss being in your happy place, I’ve compiled a list of ways to get your Disney fix at home. This list should not only be helpful during these stressful times, but also in between trips once things are settled and back to normal.
Make a Disney copycat recipe
I don’t know about you, but one of the things I love most about a Disney trip is the food! I love getting to try new foods I’ve seen pictures of on social media or heard about from friends, but I also love going back to have old favorites that hold fond memories from previous trips.
When I can’t be at a Disney park enjoying the food, one of my favorite ways to get my Disney fix is to make a copycat recipe. I am a terrible cook, but even I’ve found some foolproof recipes online that are exact replicas of foods I’ve had in the parks.
I have a Pinterest board dedicated to Walt Disney World recipes and Disneyland recipes which is a great place to start if you’re looking for some inspiration, but if you have a specific dish in mind, Pinterest seemingly has recipes for just about every dish Disney has ever created!
If you’re trying to remember the name of a dish you’ve had somewhere or can’t quite figure out what to search for, try AllEars Menus for an up to date list of all of the menus at Walt Disney World and Disneyland. Sometimes I look through these and am reminded of a dish I’d had that I loved that maybe I forgot about.
If you’re ever in a Disney restaurant and have a dish that you love, it’s always worth asking your server if they have a copy of the recipe on file – most restaurants keep copies of their most popular recipes for when the guests ask, and then you’ll have a paper copy to keep with you at home.
Lastly, there are some great Disney cookbooks out there with collections of Disney’s most popular recipes. We have a whole collection that we’ve picked up over the years, some with recipes that we’ve made over and over again. One of my favorites is one we’ve picked up at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival with recipes from the festival, so definitely keep your eyes open for seasonal books at different times of the year.
Recreate Disney scents
There are certain scents that always remind me being on a Disney vacation. No matter how long it has been since my last trip, I can still remember the scent of things like Rome burning on Spaceship Earth, or flying over the orange groves on Soarin’, or my favorite resort as I walk into the lobby.
Being able to smell these scents at home can instantly transport me back to Walt Disney World and helps me get my Disney fix at home.
I’ve recently discovered Magic Candle Company and their scents are absolutely identical to some of the scents in the parks – and it’s amazing how quickly they can take me back! I’ve purchased a few of their candles and so far my favorite scents include Beach Resort (designed to smell like the lobby of my favorite Epcot Resort!) and Ice Cream Parlor (which smells like the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor at Magic Kingdom!)
There are other candle companies out there that recreate Disney scents as well so it’s worth looking around, but this is one I can recommend personally (and no, this isn’t any kind of an ad – I just think their products are fantastic!)
Watch POV ride videos on YouTube
We’ve been watching POV (point of view) ride videos on YouTube for years. These have always served as a great way to get my kids ready for some of the newer rides we think we’ll be encountering on our next trip, or to prepare kids for rides that they might finally be tall enough for. But when we can’t get to the parks, we also use them to get our Disney fix at home.
There are countless vloggers and YouTubers out there with great ride POV videos for almost every ride imaginable, so just head to YouTube and search for the ride you want to watch. My only word of caution would be that if you haven’t ridden a ride yet, there will obviously be spoilers in the videos since you get to see everything the rider is seeing!
Make Disney photo books or scrapbooks from your last trip
I have this huge backlog of photos on my phone and computer that I keep saying I’m going to print off or make into a photo book or scrap book, but I never get around to it. Well, waiting for your next Disney vacation is a great time to turn those digital photos into something you can keep, and a great way to reminisce about your last trip.
Making a photo book is a great way to relive a previous trip – there are often photos of things I can’t even remember happening! Scrapbooks can be even more fun if you include little mementos from trips; I try to collect little things from the trip to add to scrapbooks later.
Have a Disney movie night
Disney movies night are something we’ve been doing for a while and not only are they a fun family tradition, but they’re a great way to get your Disney fix!
We make a whole evening out of our Disney movie nights, and each night is centered around a Disney movie that we take turns choosing. Disney+ has opened up a ton of possibilities for this but even if you don’t have a subscription, you can find Disney movies on other streaming services or pick up the DVDs online.
We plan a meal to compliment the movie, as well as an activity or a craft, and then settle in to watch the movie with a snack. You can find some really fun Disney movie night ideas here or come up with something of your own.
Play Disney board games
Did you know that pretty much every classic board game has a Disney version? Monopoly, Scrabble, Clue – there’s a Disney version of all of them! They’ve been a great way to introduce my kids to some classic games while getting our Disney fix!
Some of our favorite Disney board games are trivia games, especially ones where we get to test our Disney movie or parks knowledge! Those games get pretty competitive in our house!
If you don’t own a Disney board game, then make one up! We’ve created our own Disney trivia games, games where you have to come up with things like Disney rides and characters for certain letters of the alphabet, and even Disney charades where we act out Disney movies.
Listen to Disney music
I have a Disney playlist on Spotify and it is my go to music whenever I need my Disney fix at home. Listening to music not only from the Disney movies, but from the Disney parks themselves, always cheers me up and puts me in a better mood.
Music streaming apps will all have plenty of Disney songs for you to choose from. I love finding music from Disney attractions that are no longer in the parks; things like the music from the Main Street Electrical Parade or Wishes fireworks. Those always bring back memories of past trips and never fail to make me smile.
If you’re looking for hard copies of Disney music, Amazon has a wide collection of CDs from Disney movies or the Disney parks (including karaoke versions of Disney songs for the really brave!)
Plan another trip!
Honestly, I think the best way to get your Disney fix at home is to plan another trip! Even though times are uncertain now, there’s nothing wrong with planning a trip without actually making any reservations.
This is actually the perfect time to plan a trip with everything you’ve wanted to do and then you can book when it looks like it will be safe for us to all travel again.
I have a document that I save with everything I’ve always wanted to do at the Disney parks. Hotels I’ve wanted to stay at, FastPasses that I would book at the various parks, dining reservations for places I’ve always wanted to try, snacks I want to sample, etc. When it comes time for me to book another trip, I’ll pick and choose from this list depending on how the trip is going to play out.
It’s actually a lot of fun to plan a pretend trip, and you can look forward to the time when the parks open back up again, it’s safe for us all to travel, and you can actually take the trip you spent this time planning.
If you need help planning your trip, take a look at my 20 tips for planning your first Disney trip and 15 things not to miss on your first trip to Walt Disney World.