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So, how many times have you heard someone say, or have said yourself, “I need a Vacation, because of my vacation?” That cracks me up. If you are going on Vacation and working harder than you would have at work, then you are doing something wrong in my mind. Many people find Disney Vacations especially tiring. This is because some families think they have to do everything there is to do in Disney World in one trip. I can tell you from experience, it cannot be done. But people think if they go commando*, they can make it happen. All going commando seems to do is make you grumpy and causes people to not have a Magical Experience. When my family visits Disney World, we have a philosophy of non-Commandoism. We may start at the crack of day and not end our day until late, but at some point in the middle, we will leave the parks, stop what we are doing and take a break. These breaks can be as short as a lunch break (in which case we’ll also take a dinner break) or they may be as long as a few hours and we will stop for the afternoon. We have found that this type of break, where we leave the parks behind and go
back to our resort after lunch, hang by the pool, maybe take a nap, visit another resort or even just ride the Monorail, is the perfect way for us to “Do Disney“. Our Hakuna Mawednesday articles will share with you the different places we have found to relax and maybe even recreate, while taking a break from the parks. We hope you find some places you can enjoy the next time you are in Disney World.

One of my favorite places to relax is at the Epcot Resort Area. The Epcot Resort Area is “out the backdoor” of Epcot, also known as the International Gateway. The Epcot Resorts are The Beach and Yacht Club, the Dolphin and the Swan and the Boardwalk Resorts. Each of these Resorts has some great places to relax and get away from the crowds and rushing of the parks.

There are also some recreation choices for you in the Epcot Resort area, if you are so inclined. At the Bayside Marina you can rent bicycles and boats for your personal use. They also offer fishing excursions and specialty cruises. Over on the Boardwalk you can also rent bicycles and surrey bikes for some family fun. Across the street from the Swan and Dolphin is Fantasia Gardens Mini-golf, which many people don’t know about and is a great place to get away from crowds of people.

All of the Epcot Resorts offer great places to eat and some neat shops to walk through. Of course the main area to visit, for guests who are not staying in the Epcot Resorts, is Disney’s Boardwalk. The Boardwalk itself is located behind the Boardwalk Resort. The Boardwalk is an actual boardwalk like you might find at the beach in the Mid-Atlantic States. It is fashioned after the Boardwalk in Atlantic City around the time of the turn of the 20th century. Disney’s

Boardwalk offers a variety of food choices, everything from a hot dog stand to Celebrity Chef Cat Cora’s Kouzzina (which is becoming a signature restaurant in Disney.) One of my favorite places is The Big River Grille and Brewing works. This brew pub is a nice place to get some fresh brewed beer and have a burger. (best burgers ever!) They have outdoor seating areas, which when it isn’t too hot, is a great place to sit on the Boardwalk and people watch.

The Boardwalk is also home to some very unique shops. They have a Wyland Gallery which if you have never been in one, I recommend just to see some really great pieces of artwork. The ESPN Club at the end of the Boardwalk also has their own shop called the Yard which sells ESPN merchandise. There is also an arcade in the Yard and one further down behind the Wyland Gallery that is actually part of the Boardwalk Resort.

The main reason my family enjoys going to the Epcot Resort area, to relax, isn’t the shops or the eateries (although they are all wonderful), it is the relaxing atmosphere. Taking a break from the Parks to go and hang out in the stress free environment is a wonderful way to spend an afternoon or even an evening. As places to Relax in Walt Disney World go, the Epcot Resort Area and the Boardwalk are at the top of the list for Hakuna Mawednesday!

*By going commando, I mean being a Disney Commando and rushing from one attraction to the next and then from park to park. Going from the crack of dawn, until the wee hours of the night.

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