This is one of the top questions I get and also one of the top debates people have over Disney. At some point, everyone asks “What age should I take my child to Disney“. I’m sure if you have talked about Disney at all, you have asked it too. Some answers I have heard: “Don’t take them until after 5…You want them to remember it” , “Wait until first grade, so they understand it” or “Take them before they are 3, while they are free“. I am a firm believer your kids are never too young for Disney. My argument is simpler than you might think: perspective.
Let me explain.
You should take your kids at ANY age! Will a 1 year old remember the trip? Absolutely not, but will you?? Most definitely! Seeing Disney through a child’s eyes is a perspective you can not recreate and is truly a magical feeling. These characters are movie stars to your child. Your 2 year old may dream of being Elsa, but to actually meet Elsa… to actually see Elsa preform “magic” is mind-blowing from the perspective of a child. It is quite possibly my favorite part of Disney.
I have never regretted a single trip to Disney. I have never thought I should have waited. I have never thought they were too young. Those first trips were for me… Not for my children. They were for me to remember what it was like to be a child. They were for me to see the perspective of the world through my child’s eyes. They were a time when I could answer “How did they do that?” with “Magic” and the response was a simple “WOW“. My children were too young to question it and too young to doubt it. Those… Those are the memories I cherish. Those are the memories I will always hold on to because that innocent perspective quickly fades.
Our trips now are still about memories and family time. We thoroughly enjoy planning our days in the park. Planning the rides we will ride and the restaurants we want to try. We talk about new snacks and desserts. We talk about spending time at the pool and about new changes in the park. We love going to Disney and we love the quality time we have there, but their perspective has changed. My oldest is almost 9 and is very aware the characters are in costumes. As much as I fight it, he knows. He knows TinkerBell flies using a wire cable. He knows BB8 is moved by controls and not real… And I know “magic” is no longer an acceptable answer to “how do they do that”.
The change in perspective does not change my love for Disney. It is what makes each trip different. It makes us keep going back again and again. Do not look at this as a one and done vacation and do not wait for the “perfect” time for your kid. The perfect time for you might be different than the perfect time for your child. Vacations are about memories and bonding. Taking your kids to Disney at a young age is not always about the memories your child makes…. It is about the memories YOU make.
It is important to remember Disney is not just for kids. Disney is for everyone and the memories you make on various trips will stay with you forever. Trust me. These are memories worth having and are some of my favorites.
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