Traveling Gay Dads: You’re Going to Disney!

By @ 10/15/13 in Correspondent, Gay dads, Gay family travel, Gay travel magazine, Gay-Friendly, Haven Caylor, ManAboutWorld, Orlando, Travel

WDW haven

Haven Caylor is a ManAboutWorld Global Correspondent, father to two incredibly cute kids and one of our “Gay Traveling Dads.” He and his husband recently took Ammon and Carter to Walt Disney World Resort. Here his update from the “Happiest Place on Earth.”

‘Let the Memories Begin’ … and treasure them in your heart when the awesome adventure is over. Ammon, Carter, Sean, and I spent the 3rd week of September at Walt Disney World Resort.  For 8 adventure-filled days, we spent time in the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and the Animal Kingdom. My synoptic advise for Walt Disney World is GO THERE! Save your money, plan your itinerary (https://disneyworld.disney.go.com was my all-inclusive helper), go, and ENJOY! I also have 3 other pieces of advice I would like to share.

1) Stay on the Walt Disney World Resort. The use of its monorail and bus system is first rate. I highly recommend the Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Carter, Ammon, Sean, and I stayed there, and it was in a perfect location. We could walk to the Magic Kingdom in less than 10 minutes, and in the evenings if we were leaving from the Magic Kingdom, it was the first stop off the monorail. We had chosen to drive our own vehicle from our home in Chattanooga to Orlando, and when we parked our car upon our Bay Lake Tower arrival, we didn’t touch it again until 8 days later when we returned home.

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2) Take advantage of Walt Disney World’s meal plans. The reason I have is two-fold. The first reason is that the food is wonderful. The meal plan we chose was the simple, Disney Dining Plan. It included one sit-down meal a day (lots of buffets with all you can eat menus), one quick-service meal a day (a variety of cuisines with PLENTY of food…it’s only called quick-service because it’s “to go”), and one snack a day per person. I gained about 5 pounds while I was there, and that was with jogging every morning for an hour and then walking in the parks all day! The second reason to be on the meal plan is that the sit-down meals include the Character Meals where your children can meet Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, princesses, Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and even newer characters such as Agent Oso and Jake from Jake and the Neverland Pirates. The characters (especially the princesses) are so engaging with the children and they all give individual attention to each child who is dining.

3) Have fun and take advantage of extra opportunities to have extra fun. Sean and I spent a little extra money for a special event (not included in the regular ticketing price) called Mickey’s Not-So- Scary Halloween Party. The Magic Kingdom closed at 7:00 PM on Tuesday and Friday for the special event. We chose to attend on Friday night. All the rides were available, there was Trick- or-Treating all over the park, special fireworks were plentiful, and a special Mickey’s Boo-to-You Halloween Parade with plenty of Disney Villains ran twice. Carter and Ammon even attended a special Halloween dance in Adventureland with Woody and Jessie from “Toy Story”.

Walt Disney World is a special place for families. As you walk into the Magic Kingdom, there is a marquee that states, “Let the Memories Begin”. We have marvelous memories of the Walt Disney World Resort, and you will too.

 

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10 comments


  1. Tanya Wilkinson

    Great article, Haven! Not only was it fun to read about your Disney adventures, but you included some really helpful tips as well. Love you guys!!

    • Haven

      Tanya, thank you for reading!

      I can just see you, Brian, Luke, & Sarah traveling to Disney World in the very near future.

      We love you guys as well!

  2. Paul J. Heney

    What a great adventure! I don’t know how you kept it up for 8 days. I think I’d be exhausted after 3 or 4, lol!

    • Haven

      Paul, it was exhausting, but it was “good exhaustion”. We 4 had a spectacular time. How are you & your boys?

  3. Rachael Phillips

    Great pics Haven! I bet the children loved it. I can’t wait to go in 2015 – think my girls will be the right age by then. Can you suggest an ideal age based on your experience? Great post and great tips. My girls would love to dine with all those characters. Magical 🙂

    • Haven

      Rachael,
      Thank you for the comment! Based on age & height, I suggest a child should be at least be 5 years old before experiencing Disney World to its fullest.

      Your daughters will have a BLAST! Maybe our families can rendezvous in Disney World in 2015. ;o)

      Haven

  4. Paul Teixeira

    I enjoyed your article and its awesome you had such a great time there. I love Disney parks as well and recently enjoyed the Gay Days even at Disneyland in Anaheim, CA. Your tips are great and they apply similarly in CA as well. We a little bit of extra research and planning you can really change your ability to enjoy the park easier.

    • Haven

      Paul
      Thank you for your comment.

      We do plan to visit Disneyland within the next 4-5 years before we return to Tennessee on a cross-country adventure.

      Paul, we also look forward to your future MAW articles as you reflect upon your Spring/Summer 2013 trip around the world.

      Haven

  5. Will

    Great Read for traveling families headed to Disney World

    Where are you, Sean & your children going next, Haven?

    Where ever it may be, keep us updated with your travel tips,

    Will

  6. Haven

    Hey, Will

    Thanks for the comment! We hope to travel to New York City before Christmas. We’ve tried to make a family tradition to see the Radio City Music Hall’s/Rockettes Christmas Spectacular each Christmas Season. We’ve gone since 2010. It’s a great time of year to be in Manhattan.

    Best, Haven

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