Summer has arrived at the Disney parks — or, at least, the summer temperatures have. We don’t exactly love the Florida heat, but we love being at Walt Disney World, and more often than not, the two go hand in hand. So, this season, we’re sharing a guide to surviving summer at Disney World and including all of our go-to products for the parks.
Surviving the Summer Heat
With wicked humidity and unrelenting heat, the summer months at Disney World can be brutal. So, before we dive into all our top product recs, here are some quick tips for surviving the heat.
First, spend time in the parks during the coolest hours of the day — early morning and late at night — and take a break midday. Taking a break might mean heading back to your resort for a midday nap or swimming session. Or, it could mean booking a dining reservation at one of the resorts so you can soak in the air conditioning and lounge in the lobby for a little while. Our recommendation? Book lunch at Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge for a chance to see some unique wildlife and eat a scrumptious meal, then grab an iced latte and some zebra domes from The Mara to enjoy while you chill in the hotel lobby. On a hot afternoon, spending some time at a resort (even if it’s not your own) can be pure bliss.
To that end, be sure to stay hydrated. Any Disney quick-service restaurant that serves fountain beverages can provide you with a free cup of ice water. But if that Florida tap water isn’t to your liking, splurge on the biggest bottle of Smart Water available. Alternatively, you can get groceries delivered to your Disney hotel! So, if you want to make sure you always have water on hand and don’t want to drink Disney water, we recommend keeping a case of water in your hotel room to bring water with you every time you head into the parks. We recommend freezing your water bottles overnight and taking them into the parks. They’ll thaw quickly, and you’ll have a fresh supply of cold water on hand.
For more tips, check out our posts on first-timer Walt Disney World mistakes and what to do when Walt Disney World is packed. These tips apply to visiting Disney World any time of year, but especially in the summer.
Now, we’ve got a ton of products to recommend.
Let’s get into it!
Must-Have Products for Summer at Disney World
First, we’ve got to talk about handheld fans and facial misters. These small but powerful accessories are a must for us whenever we’re taking on the parks in the summertime (or, really, anytime it’s above 80 degrees).
Most handheld fans from Amazon are compact enough to fit in a small park bag and come in various colors. So, if you’re standing in the sun during an afternoon parade or waiting in a long queue for an attraction, you can break out a handy fan. Just remember to charge it once you get back to your resort at the end of the day or pack extra batteries if you need to. Check out this pastel option or this Mickey-inspired fan if you’re feeling festive.
Even in the intense humidity, a facial mister can cool you off. This miniature option can be filled with cold water and used throughout the day whenever you need a refresh. Plus, it’s so compact that it can fit in a small handbag or fanny pack. This one is our favorite!
Sometimes a portable fan isn’t enough to keep you cool on the hottest days, especially if you’re staying in the park through the afternoon. Just in case, you can bring some cooling towels. These are awesome. Are they fashionable? Absolutely not. But when it comes to keeping you cool, these do the trick, at least for a little while. You can simply soak the towel in the sink in any of the Disney restrooms, wring it out, and wear it around your neck. We love cooling towels when it comes to surviving scorching days at the parks — especially EPCOT, since the sun is pretty unavoidable when walking from pavilion to pavilion. Buy a four-pack here.
Listen, nobody wants to get sunburned while on vacation, so sunscreen is an absolute must. We know that sometimes sunscreen can add an oily feeling to your face, especially in the Florida humidity. We recommend going with a mattifying or oil control sunscreen to combat that. Ren, Murad, and Paula’s Choice all make great options.
If you wear makeup all day at the parks, we recommend applying an SPF before your makeup and bringing a powder sunscreen or SPF setting mist in your bag. We love these powders from Tarte and Supergoop and these setting sprays from Supergoop and Coola. All are available in convenient travel-friendly sizes and can help refresh your face and protect you from the sun.
Anti-frizz hair products
We know we’re not alone in our struggle between the humidity and our hair. Some Disney days, it feels like a constant battle! But through the years, we’ve added some products to our travel bag so we can prep our hair before heading out. We swear by the Living Proof Humidity Shield pretty much year-round when we’re adventuring around the parks in Florida.
It’s no secret that Walt Disney World involves a lot of walking. The parks are massive, and whether you’re visiting for the first time or you’re a Disney regular, you’ve got to prepare yourself. Or, rather, your feet. Not all comfy shoes are cute, and not all cute shoes are comfy. Our absolute favorite shoes are the slip-on Athletic Propulsion Labs TechLoom Bliss Sneaker. These APL shoes are chic and lightweight, and their neutral look makes them wearable with any park outfit. For a budget-friendly sandal option, we recommend the Shade & Shore slides. They’re a summer staple, and with all of the rain Central Florida gets this time of year, we love a water-resistant shoe.
Easy, breezy clothing will be your best friend at the theme parks. And yes, you can wear dresses at the theme parks! We’re all about showcasing our personal style at the parks, and you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for fashion on a hot park day. Stick with breathable materials like cotton and flowy shorts or dresses that can keep you cool and won’t cling to your skin when you’re sweating in the Florida sun. We have a variety of outfit recommendations on our site, including this dress.
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