Sara Mahjoub, Senior Travel Planner 

Summer Disney vacation? Yes, please!

Growing up as a native Floridian, heat was always just a part of life, that you learned to live with. Now that I’ve relocated to Colorado, I still don’t love the heat, but I have found a new appreciation for the magic that summer brings to Walt Disney World. Here are a few of my favorite things (for even this heat-averse vacation fairy) to enjoy this summer at Disney:

-Late Summer Sunsets

During the height of summer, the sun sets well after 8pm. . .and then the magic really happens! There is something special about the theme parks at night. Everything twinkles, the temps cool down, and you feel refreshed by the excitement of an evening in the park. It’s a whole different atmosphere- one you need to experience for yourself!

The later sunset means later showtimes for your favorite nighttime spectaculars, like Happily Ever After in the Magic Kingdom, Epcot Forever and Fantasmic at Hollywood Studios!

Nighttime is the right time for some of your favorite rides, too! Have you ever ridden Kilimanjaro Safaris at dusk, to see the evening animals active? How about Expedition Everest, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad or the Astro Orbiter? Lots of your favorite rides take on a new feel once the sun goes down!

Wise summer travelers know to take an afternoon break, and return to their Disney hotel for a nap and a swim to cool down. Then, they head back to the parks for a full evening of fun! When you book your vacation with our expert travel planners, you will get lots of smart tips like this, so you have the best strategies for making the most of your summer Disney vacation!

-Water Parks

Walt Disney World has two fun water parks- Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach! Both are filled with fun water slides and lots of ways to chill out. You can easily catch the complimentary transportation from your Disney hotel to the water parks, too. Adding on water park admission to your vacation package is easy- just ask for details!

Typhoon Lagoon even hosts its own After Hours event, called H2O Glow After Hours. This event takes place from 8pm until 11pm, and features glowing decor, a live DJ dance party, some of your favorite characters, all of your favorite slides with little to no wait, and unlimited popcorn, ice cream and select fountain drinks included, all night long! But this event only takes place select nights through September, so ask about adding this special event to your Disney vacation plans!

-Even More After Hours Events

And if you think Typhoon Lagoon is the only park to get in on the late-night fun, think again! After Hours Events are planned this summer at Hollywood Studios and Epcot! Each evening, you get to enjoy 3 extra hours of time in the parks, with limited numbers of tickets sold- and that means no crowds, no lines, and ALL the fun for you! Enjoy very short or no waits at your favorite rides, extra chances to enter the virtual queue for Guardians of the Galaxy, and unlimited popcorn, ice cream and bottled beverages all evening. And did I mention no need for sunscreen? It’s basically the perfect evening in the parks- as long as you can stay up late! These After Hours events take place 10pm- 1am, so be sure you get your afternoon nap in, and maybe your favorite Disney coffee, too! Ask your Middle of the Magic Travel Planner about getting tickets for these special events- many nights have already sold out!

-Extended Evening Theme Park Hours

If you can’t get enough of the Disney theme parks at night, you’re going to want to stay at a Deluxe or Deluxe Villa Resort Hotel, where all hotel guests get even more time in the theme parks on select evenings! Traditionally, the Extended Evening Theme Park Hours take place at Epcot on Monday nights, and Magic Kingdom on Wednesday nights, but Disney has been known to mix it up once in a while, and you might find evening hours at Hollywood Studios! You’ll enjoy lower wait times for all your favorite rides, extra chances to join the virtual queues for Tron Lightcycle Run and Guardians of the Galaxy, unlimited popcorn, ice cream and bottled beverages, and some incredible nighttime photo ops in the parks- without the crowds behind you! Extended Evening Hours are included with your Deluxe hotel stay, so let’s find the perfect hotel for your Disney vacation stay!

-Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

Believe it or not, you can actually get spooky this summer with Walt Disney World’s popular fall event! Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party takes place select nights beginning August 11th, and runs through November 1st. Pro tip: the August and September parties are cheaper than the October nights! So you can enjoy all the fun for less! Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party features special fireworks, the event-exclusive Boo to You Parade, trick-or-treating throughout the park, and your only chance to wear costumes into the parks! Keep your eyes open for favorite and rare characters throughout the park, including Jack and Sally. There are also Halloween layovers on fan-favorite rides like Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Mad Tea Party and lots more! Party tickets are on sale now, and some nights will sell out, so don’t wait to add yours to your summer Disney vacation!

-Amazing Hotel Pools

Disney hotels are filled with magical details- and that doesn’t stop at the hotel rooms! All Disney Resort Hotels offer fun pools, each themed to match their hotel. Many include water slides, quiet pools, whirlpool spas and even splash zones and water play areas for littles!

Looking for an incredible hotel pool? You’ll want to stay at Disney’s Beach Club and Yacht Club Resorts. Their shared feature pool is called Stormalong Bay- a 3-acre water park, right there at your hotel! Slide through a life-sized pirate shipwreck, relax as you float along the lazy river, and enjoy lots of play in the sandy-bottom pool. Children can wade into the main pool from the gently sloping, sandy beach and cool off in the smaller Shipwreck Pool—complete with a miniature waterslide.

-Campfires and Movies Under the Stars

Disney hotels get into the summer evening fun, too, with events like campfires and Movies Under the Stars! Once you’ve arrived at your Disney hotel, check your My Disney Experience app for times and locations of these and other fun activities- all included with your stay at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel

Take an Unforgettable Voyage Through the Stars- to a Galaxy Far, Far Away

If you’re looking to get REALLY far away from it all this summer, consider adding a voyage aboard Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser to your Disney vacation! Board the Halcyon, a luxury starcruiser, and head to a galaxy far, far away to live out your own Star Wars adventure. During your two-night voyage, you will encounter characters of all kinds, be invited to participate in events, missions, meetings and more. Your choices determine your own path- and no two voyages are the same!

Your voyage does include a port day on Batuu, but as a guest of the Halcyon, you will enjoy your own private entrance to the Black Spire Outpost, plus cold water and towels to take a break from the planet’s three suns. You can return to your starcruiser at any time, too- and exploring Batuu as a Halcyon guest is completely different from any other time you may have visited previously!

You can easily add a stay aboard the Halcyon to your Disney vacation plans- transportation is provided between Walt Disney World Resort Hotels and the port for the Starcruiser. And we can help you with all the booking details, including choosing the right activities, help with backstory ideas, costume inspiration and even galactic credits to enjoy on board! Ask our Starcruiser experts with 3 Suns Travel, who have personally voyaged aboard the Halcyon, to provide lots of first-hand experience, and answer all your questions ahead of your voyage.

And if all these reasons aren’t enough to make you want to visit Disney this summer, consider this: late summer is actually one of the least-crowded times to visit Walt Disney World! The last two weeks of August and all of September (except Labor Day weekend) are the slowest and least-expensive times to visit!

AND Disney has lots of great discounts available for summer visits right now, too!

Ready to plan your next Disney vacation? When you book with Middle of the Magic Travel, our experience travel planners are here to help you every step of the way. From finding the best price, to keeping track of important planning deadlines, and being here to answer all your questions, see all the ways we can make your vacation more magical.

So, what are YOU doing this summer?

Let’s Begin Planning!