Are you planning a Disney vacation? Of course you are!! There are a lot of resources you can use when doing research about where to stay, where to eat and tips about the Disney Parks. I like to surf the internet to get some quick answers and advice from my friends at the Disney Parks Moms Panel. However, when I am ready to roll up my sleeves and plan out my Disney vacation I like to hit the books. I am a ‘paper’ type of person and I like to do research and take notes. These are books that I have used and recommend for planning your next Disney vacation. I like to use a few different books because each of them serve a different purpose that I will describe in the overview.
The Unofficial Guide….
– to Walt Disney World
– to Disneyland
I really like the amount of information that is given by the authors and I refer to these books as my Disney Parks directory. Their books cover it all – when to go, how to get there, hotel reviews, food recommendations, full reviews of each Disney Resort, tips for traveling with kids, character dining, a hotel index, a restaurant index, touring plans and so much more. The list goes on and on because they cover everything in their book including things to do in the surrounding areas. The Walt Disney World book contains over 840 pages!! If this was the only Walt Disney World or Disneyland book you buy then are you set.
The rating system they use for attractions, restaurants and hotels is easy to understand. I like it because they use a star rating system that is easy to understand with just a quick glance but they also provide and a quick blurb describing the attraction, restaurant or hotel.
PassPorter’s Walt Disney World 2014: The Unique Travel Guide, Planner, Organizer, Journal, and Keepsake!
I am a very visual person and the look and feel of the PassPorter books appeal to me. Author Jennifer Marx provides a wealth of information along with visually appealing maps, hotel reviews and color pictures.
Jennifer has included many vacation planning tools that I find to be very useful such as a budget worksheet, a two year planning calendar, fold out color maps, and a packing checklist. To top it off, the book is spiral bound which makes for easy handling and flipping through pages.
What I really love about her book is that it can also be used as a keepsake when your trip is over. Jennifer has created a special section in the back of the book called PassPockets. These are amazing and really helped me keep my thoughts in order for our trip. The page is actually an envelope too and you can slip in any thing you need for that day. I save every little thing from my trips as keepsakes and this book has a place for all of those fun things I pick up along the way.
She also covers all of the basics such as when to go, how to get there, dining information and hotel reviews. I love the hotel reviews in the PassPorter because they include the floor plans of the hotel rooms as well as a resort overview map and travel times from the hotel to each Disney destination.
I love Birnbaums guides and they used to be my ‘go to’ Disney travel books many years ago. I find that these books are perfect to sit down with your children and talk about your upcoming trip. The books are packed with fun Disney Parks and character photographs which can prepare your children for what they can expect to see when they get there. My daughters love to flip through these books all of the time and my eight year old reads the book to her younger sister. The shorter descriptions of the rides and fun Disney images make this book a great resource for kids.
101 Disneyland Tips
If you are traveling to Disneyland this book is a must read because there 101 Disneyland tips that will make your next trip to Disneyland memorable. Author Cam Bowman has created a book that is perfect for a Disneyland newbie and for those headed back for another visit.
In the book she provides tips about lesser-known Disneyland Resort experiences, character dining, park touring strategies, entertainment, memorabilia and things you need to know before you go. The book is also the perfect size to tuck into your backpack while you are touring around Disneyland.
I’d love to hear what your ‘go to’ books are when planning your Disney vacations, just leave a comment below.