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Thousands of guests have had to cancel or reschedule their Disney vacations this spring due to the global pandemic. Many were planning to celebrate a birthday, anniversary, first visit, or just being at Disney. We could all use some pixie dust and Disney magic to lift our spirits during these trying times. We have five ways that you can take a virtual Disney vacation from your own home while the parks are closed.
Set the Scene
You need to get all ready for your virtual Disney vacation! You and your home need to look the part!
Order a backdrop of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland or backdrop of Cinderella Castle at Disney World so you can feel like you’re in the middle of the magic. You will also need some music for your day! Check out the Disney Parks hits on Apple Music. You can also order the Walt Disney World Official Album or the Disney Theme Parks Classics CD.
Don’t forget to wear your Mickey ears or Minnie ear headbands! There are so many cute Minnie ear headbands available like these mint green ears with a pink bow, magic mirror metallic ears, flower ears, Epcot inspired with German flag ears, Buzz Lightyear ears, navy blue with pink polka dot ears, Mardi Gras ears, millennial pink ears, Disney Parks 2020 ears, or birthday ears.
You’ll also want your Disney shirts! Some of our favorites include this Never Grow Up shirt, “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” shirt, Minnie Mouse polka dot t-shirt, Pizza Planet shirt, boys Toy Story shirts, Mickey Mouse sunset shirt, Hakuna Matata shirt, girls Disney Princess shirts, Star Wars shirt, and Villains shirt. This “I’m done adulting, let’s go to Disney” shirt may sum up all our sentiments perfectly.
You can also read about how the magic is made throughout the parks and resorts with the new One Day at Disney book.
Watch YouTube Videos of Rides, Shows, Parades, and Fireworks
You can feel like you’re actually in the parks with these virtual rides and shows. Here are a few videos to get your day started:
Magic Kingdom Park
- it’s a small world
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- Mad Tea Party
- Main Street, U.S.A. during the holiday season
- Happily Ever After
- Disney’s Celebrate America! Fourth of July fireworks
- Fantasy in the Sky fireworks (from New Year’s Eve)
- Sunrise at Magic Kingdom
- Turtle Talk with Crush
- Journey into Imagination with Figment
- The Seas with Nemo and Friends
- Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros
- Test Track
- Epcot Forever
- Disney on Broadway Concert from the Epcot International Festival of the Arts
- IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth (show ended September 29, 2019)
- Sunrise at Epcot
- Slinky Dog Dash
- Jedi Training Academy
- Beauty and the Beast: Live on Stage
- Walt Disney: One Man’s Dream
- Star Tours
- Kilimanjaro Safaris
- Expedition Everest
- Festival of The Lion King
- Maharajah Jungle Trek
- Expedition Everest
- Tree of Life Awakenings
- Asha, the new Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra at Kilimanjaro Safaris
- Sunrise at Animal Kingdom
Disney World Water Parks
- Crush ‘n’ Gusher at Typhoon Lagoon
- Summit Plummet at Blizzard Beach
- Mayday Falls at Typhoon Lagoon
- Toboggan Racers at Blizzard Beach
- Storm Slides at Typhoon Lagoon
- Magic Happens Parade
- Disneyland Monorail
- Millenium Falcon: Smugglers Run
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- it’s a small world
- Main Street Electrical Parade
Disney California Adventure Park
Learn to Draw Your Favorite Disney Characters
There are free animation classes at both the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort Visit Rafiki’s Planet Watch in Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, or the Animation Academy in Disney California Adventure Park. Pretend that you are learning to draw with a Disney artist at home! Here are some characters to get you started:
- Simba from “The Lion King”
- Timon from “The Lion King”
- Woody from “Toy Story”
- “Pie Eyed” Mickey Mouse
- “Contemporary” Mickey Mouse
- 1920’s Mickey Mouse
- WALL-E and Eve
- Wreck-It Ralph
- Sally from “The Nightmare Before Christmas”
- Jack Jack
- Roger Rabbit
- Chip from “Beauty and the Beast”
- Daisy Duck
Make Some Delicious Disney Treats
Disney snacks are AMAZING! You can taste a bit of the magic at home with the official Disney Parks recipes. Iconic churros are served throughout the parks at both the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. Mickey Mouse- shaped beignets are served in New Orleans Square at Disneyland Resort and at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- French Quarter at the Walt Disney World Resort. Both the chocolate-hazelnut tarts and grilled cheese sandwich are served at Woody’s Lunch Box in Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Disney Parks Churro Bites
- 1 cup water
- 8 tablespoons butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs
- 1 ½ cups vegetable or canola oil
- ½ cup sugar
- Combine water, butter, salt, and ¼ teaspoon cinnamon in 1 ½-quart saucepan over medium heat. Bring pot to rolling boil.
- Reduce heat to low.
- Add flour and stir vigorously until mix forms a ball. Remove from heat and let rest for 5-7 min.
- Add eggs, one at a time, and stir until combined. Set aside.
- Heat oil in medium skillet or 1-quart saucepan over medium-high heat or until temperature reaches 350˚.
- Spoon dough into piping bag fitted with large star tip. Pipe 1-inch strip of dough over saucepan, cut with knife, and drop into hot oil. Repeat until churro bites fill saucepan with room to fry.
- Fry churro bites until golden brown. Remove with slotted spoon or mesh spider strainer.
- Drain churro bites on paper towel.
- Mix sugar and ½ teaspoon cinnamon in medium bowl. Toss in churro bites until coated. Place on serving plate and serve with favorite dipping sauce.
Mickey Mouse-shaped Beignets
- 1/2 teaspoon dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water (105°)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 egg
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Powdered sugar
- Sprinkle yeast over warm water in a small bowl, stirring to dissolve. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- Combine sugar, shortening, salt, heavy cream, egg, flour and boiling water in a large bowl; stir in yeast mixture. With the dough hook attachment of an electric mixer on medium speed, mix the dough just until combined and smooth. Let dough rest for 30 minutes.
- Roll to 1/4-inch thickness and cut individual beignets with a Mickey Mouse-shaped cutter or cut into 2 1/2 to 3-inch squares. Cover with a towel and let dough rise until doubled in size in a warm, draft-free area, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- Using caution, heat 3 inches of vegetable oil to 350°F in a deep, heavy pot over medium-high heat. Fry beignets until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes, turning as soon as they brown on one side. Remove with tongs and place on paper towels to drain. Dust warm beignets with powdered sugar and serve immediately.
Chocolate-Hazelnut Lunch Box Tarts (from Woody’s Lunch Box at Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
Chocolate Hazelnut Tarts
- 4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt, divided
- 3 sticks unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 3 eggs, divided
- 10 tablespoons water
- 1/2 cup chocolate hazelnut spread
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk, divided
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 4 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
For Chocolate Hazelnut Tart
- Combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, 2 teaspoons of salt, butter, coconut oil, and 2 of the eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until combined.
- Add water and mix on low speed for 1 minute. Increase speed and blend until dough is smooth. Do not overmix.
- Divide dough into two even balls and wrap in plastic wrap. Rest in refrigerator for 45 minutes.
- Preheat over to 375 degrees.
- Mix remaining egg and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Lightly flour a large cutting board and roll first ball of dough into 1/4-inch thick rectangle. Cut into eight 2- by 6-inch rectangles.
- Place rectangles on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with reserved egg wash. Spread 1 tablespoon of chocolate-hazelnut spread on the rectangle.
- Roll remaining ball of dough into 1/4-inch thick rectangle and cut into eight 2- by 6-inch rectangles. Place on top of chocolate hazelnut covered tarts and seal edges with a fork. Brush top of tarts with egg wash.
- Bake for 17 minutes, until golden brown. Cool completely.
- Mix sugar, 1 tablespoon of the milk, and lemon juice in a small bowl. Slowly add remaining milk until icing is smooth and spreads easily, but is not runny.
- Spread icing on each cooled tart and top with bacon pieces.
Grilled Three-Cheese Sandwich (from Woody’s Lunch Box at Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
Cream Cheese Spread
- 1/2 cup cream cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded Double Gloucester or cheddar
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
Grilled Three-Cheese Sandwich
- 8 slices of artisan bread
- 8 cheddar cheese slices
- 8 provolone slices
For Cream Cheese Spread:
- Combine cream cheese, Double Gloucester or cheddar, heavy cream, and salt in food processor. Blend until smooth. Set aside.
For Garlic Spread:
- Combine mayonnaise, garlic, and salt in small bowl and stir until blended. Set aside.
For Grilled Three-Cheese Sandwich:
- Lay out artisan bread slices on parchment paper or large cutting board.
- Place 2 slices of cheddar on 4 of the bread slices. Place 2 slices of provolone on remaining bread slices.
- Equally spoon cream cheese spread on slices with provolone. Gently smooth cream cheese spread over each slice.
- Press cheddar side and provolone side together.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat for 5 minutes, until hot.
- Brush both sides of the sandwiches with garlic spread.
- Grill sandwiches for 2 minutes on each side, until cheese is melted and bread is golden brown.
Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup (from Le Cellier Steakhouse at EPCOT)
1/2 pound of bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
3 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock
4 cups milk
1 pound white cheddar cheese, grated
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup warm Canadian golden lager or any pale lager-style beer
Chopped scallions or chives, for garnish
- In a 4- or 5-quart Dutch oven, cook bacon, stirring, over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until lightly browned.
- Add red onion, celery, and butter and sauté until onion has softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes over medium heat. Whisk in chicken stock and bring to boil for 1 minute. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add milk and continue to simmer for 15 minutes. Do not boil after milk is added.
- Remove from heat and add cheese, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Blend with immersion blender until cheese is melted and soup is smooth. Stir in warm beer. If the soup is too thick, thin with some warm milk.
- Serve the soup hot, garnished with chopped scallions or chives.
The Grey Stuff
- 1 1/2 cups cold whole milk
- 1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
- 15 chocolate sandwich cookies
- 1 (8 ounce) container whipped topping, thawed
- 3 tablespoons instant chocolate pudding mix
- 12 scalloped sugar cookies
- Edible sugar pearls
- Pour milk into large mixing bowl. Add instant vanilla pudding mix and whisk for 2 minutes until smooth and slightly thickened. Place in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours, until firm.
- Place chocolate sandwich cookies in food processor and pulse until puréed.
- Fold puréed cookies into pudding mix. Stir until fully mixed.
- Add whipped topping and instant chocolate pudding. Stir until fully mixed.
- Place in refrigerator and chill for one hour.
- Spoon grey stuff into piping bag fitted with desired tip. Pipe grey stuff onto cookies. Top with sugar pearls.
Tonga Toast from Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/3 cup whole milk
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 quart canola oil, for frying
- 1 loaf sourdough bread (uncut, 12 inches long)
- 2 large bananas, peeled
Mix sugar and cinnamon in medium bowl (large enough to roll toast) with a fork until thoroughly blended. Set aside.
Whip eggs in medium bowl (large enough to dip toast) until well beaten. Add milk, cinnamon, and sugar. Mix well and set aside.
For Tonga Toast:
- Using caution, preheat oil to 350°F in a large pot or a deep fryer. (If using a large pot, use a candy thermometer to make certain the oil does not get any hotter or it will burn.)
- Slice the bread into four three-inch-thick slices.
- Cut each banana in half crosswise, then each piece lengthwise.
- Place a bread slice flat on the counter and tear out just enough from the middle (do not tear all the way through) to stuff half a banana into; repeat with each bread slice.
- Dip stuffed bread into batter, covering both sides, allowing excess batter to drip off bread and place carefully into hot oil.
- Cook 4-5 minutes until golden brown. If needed, turn toast over after 2 minutes and cook for another 2 minutes on other side. Remove and drain excess oil.
- Roll toast in cinnamon-sugar. Repeat for each piece of toast.
Peanut Butter & Jelly Milk Shake from 50’s Prime Time Café at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons jelly (strawberry or grape)
- 2 cups vanilla ice cream
- 1/4 cup milk
- Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth.
- Add additional peanut butter or jelly to taste.
Cook’s Notes: Two cups sliced strawberries can be substituted for jelly.
Totchos from Woody’s Lunch Box at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Chili with Beans
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- Black pepper, to taste
- Ground cayenne, to taste
- 2 cups jar cheese sauce
- 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with chilies
- 1 (2 pound) bag frozen potato barrels
- 1 1/2 cups corn chips
- Chili with Beans
- Queso Sauce
- 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 6 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
For Chili with Beans:
- Brown ground beef in a 5-6 quart Dutch oven over medium heat until fully cooked. Drain off excess grease.
- Add onion and garlic and sauté for 5-7 minutes, until onion is translucent.
- Add crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, kidney beans, chili powder, and cumin. Simmer for 20 minutes. Add salt.
- Add black pepper and cayenne, as needed.
- Keep warm until ready to serve.
For Queso Sauce:
- Place cheese sauce and diced tomatoes with chilies in small saucepan. Cook over low heat for 10 minutes, until warm.
- Keep warm until ready to serve.
- Cook potato barrels according to package instructions.
- Divide potato barrels into 6 bowls. Place 1/4 cup each of corn chips, chili with beans, and queso sauce on top of each bowl of potato barrels.
- Top each bowl with 2 tablespoons shredded cheese, 1 tablespoon sour cream, and 1 teaspoon green onions.
Kitchen Sink from Beaches & Cream Soda Shop at Disney’s Beach Club Resort
- 1/2 cup warm fudge topping
- 1/2 cup warm butterscotch topping
- 1/2 cup warm peanut butter topping
- 1 medium banana, sliced in 1/2-inch slices
- 1 cinnamon spice cupcake (2 ½ x 1 1/4-inch), quartered
- 1 angel food cupcake (3 x 1 1/2-inch), quartered
- 2 generous scoops vanilla ice cream
- 2 generous scoops chocolate ice cream
- 2 generous scoops strawberry ice cream
- 1 generous scoop mint chocolate chip ice cream
- 1 generous scoop coffee ice cream
- 3 tablespoons chocolate syrup
- 1/4 cup marshmallow cream
- 1/4 cup strawberry topping
- 1/4 cup pineapple topping
- 14-ounce can dairy whipped topping
- 1 large brownie (6-inch x 6-inch), quartered
- 1 regular-sized candy bar, quartered
- 4 chocolate cookies with cream filling
- 1 tablespoon sliced toasted almonds
- 1 tablespoon dark and white chocolate shavings
- 1 tablespoon crushed chocolate cookies with cream filling
- 1 tablespoon chopped jellied orange slices, about 2 large slices
- 1 tablespoon milk chocolate chip morsels
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter chip morsels
- 1 tablespoon chocolate sprinkles
- 1 tablespoon rainbow sprinkles
- 1/2 cup drained maraschino cherries
- Pour hot fudge, butterscotch, and peanut butter toppings into bottom of large bowl.
- Layer banana slices and cupcake pieces over toppings. Top with all ice creams.
- As quickly as possible, spoon chocolate syrup, marshmallow cream, strawberry, and pineapple toppings over ice cream.
- Cover completely with dairy whipped topping. Tuck brownie pieces, candy bar pieces, and cookies in whipped topping.
- Sprinkle with toasted almonds, dark and white chocolate shavings, crushed cookies, jellied orange slices, milk chocolate chip morsels, peanut butter morsels, chocolate sprinkles, and rainbow sprinkles. Top with cherries.
Make your Own Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or Pirates League
Many of your little princesses, princes, pirates, and mermaids were looking forward to a makeover at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or Pirates League. You can still have a makeover at home! Order a costume and give your little one a pirate or princess inspired makeover.
PS- We always recommend bringing your own costume to these locations in the parks to save on the cost of your experience!
Here are some costume ideas:
- Cinderella costume
- Princess Aurora costume
- Rapunzel costume
- Moana Adventure Outfit
- Princess Jasmine Costume
- Belle and Rapunzel Dress Up Trunk
- 21 piece Disney Princess Dress Up Trunk
- Anna costume
- Elsa costume
- Kids pirate costume
- Girls buccaneer costume
- Kids pirate costume
- Kids pirate costume with hat and eye patch
- Mermaid costume
- Mermaid princess costume
Here are some inspiration videos for your makeover:
- Look Like a Buccaneer for a Day
- Halloween Minnie Mouse Transformation
- A Royal Transformation: Princess Elena
- Pretty as a Princess
- Pirate Makeovers
After your Pirates League makeover, Pirate Mac can teach his newest recruits how to ready for life on the high seas here.
End Your Magical Virtual Disney Vacation with Happily Ever After
Our favorite way to end any day at Disney World is with Magic Kingdom’s nighttime spectacular, Happily Ever After. It is a beautiful show and the perfect “kiss goodnight.”
Watch as Cinderella Castle becomes a canvas for the heart-tugging story of the importance of chasing your dreams, no matter what, and finding your happily ever after.
Have you had to cancel or reschedule your Disney vacation? We hope that these ideas for your virtual Disney vacation brought a little Disney magic to your home while we can’t enjoy the parks in person. When you’re ready to start planning your next adventure for the fall or holiday season or even 2021, we’re happy to help!
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