Walt Disney World closes a generational gap

Travel Weekly's Sabina Rubbinaccio traveled to Walt Disney World with children and grandchildren in tow for a multigenerational getaway. Her report follows:

he last time my daughter and I visited Walt Disney World, she was 11 and Epcot still was under development. Now, with two kids of her own, ages 1 and 3, she agreed it was time for all of us to check out the theme parks together.

Considering the children's ages, we decided to spend our time at the Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, figuring even a 1-year-old would appreciate Winnie the Pooh and a long-necked giraffe.

As always, a Magic Kingdom highlight was breakfast with the characters at the Crystal Palace. But remind clients that reservations are required.

The It's a Small World attraction came next, followed by our 3-year-old's favorite, Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin.

The Share a Dream Come True Parade, part of the Disney's "100 Years of Magic" celebration, was wonderful, bringing classic stories to life inside giant snow globes.

We spent a full day at the Animal Kingdom, where we watched the "Festival of the Lion King" show, a memorable celebration of song and dance.

Just as memorable, but perhaps not quite as pleasant, was the "It's Tough to Be a Bug" show.

Parents -- and travel agents on a fam visit with toddlers -- should judge whether to attend. Our little ones were not entirely amused by the show, prompting us to determine maybe the bug-oriented Animatronix show is somewhat scary for ages 3 and younger.

All was well, however, on the Kilimanjaro Safari, where the kids got to see wildlife up close.

Not to be outdone by the Magic Kingdom parade, Animal Kingdom features the Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade. Disney characters drive along in safari vehicles, accompanied by puppets and stilt walkers.

Clients should be advised to check parade times and park hours once on site, as some events and hours of operation are subject to change.

Park Hopper tickets enable multiple visits each day to any of the four parks. They are priced depending on length of stay. Agents can find details on line at www.disneytravelagents.com.

For the adults in our party, the trip was deemed a great success. From the perspective of the toddler in our group, Buzz Lightyear probably said it best: Going to Disney World was like going "to infinity and beyond." For Disney details great and small, visit Disney's Web site.

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI