Why You Can’t Afford to Skip Disney Springs on Your Next Vacation!

We only used to spend a little bit of time at Disney Springs on our trips to Walt Disney World. After all, we were paying for park tickets, not to visit what we thought was essentially an outdoor shopping mall (we were wrong, by the way!). 

In recent years, we started spending more time at Disney Springs, and now, every trip of ours is complete with a day of relaxing there!

Disney Springs is a fantastic restaurant and shopping center on Walt Disney World property with various Disney and non-Disney offerings. It has dozens of shops, incredible restaurants, and family-friendly activities that you all can participate in. 

There are many ways to spend your day there, but here are a few of our must-dos on a Disney Springs day!

Delicious Chicken Tenders at Chicken Guy

For any Food Network fans, you don’t want to miss Chicken Guy! – a delicious quick stop started by Food Network’s own Guy Fieri. They have some of the most delightful chicken tenders I’ve ever eaten, with over twenty house-made sauces. Be sure to check out their milkshake and loaded fries too! Chicken Guy! is always a must-visit place for us on our trips to Disney Springs.

Chicken Tenders at Chicken Guy at Disney Springs

Visit Gideon’s Bakehouse 

Gideon’s Bakehouse is a specialty bakehouse that offers giant (almost a half-pound!) cookies, massive cake slices, and delicious coffee. They are trendy, so you should head there early to get in line. You can sign up for their virtual queue if they’re swamped, giving you an approximate return time. Once signed up, you can meander around Disney Springs before a text brings you back to Gideon’s to get your delicious treats.

Chocolate Chip Cookie from Gideon's Bakehouse at Disney Springs

Many people have asked if Gideon’s is worth the wait. We say ABSOLUTELY! The cookies are rich, warm, and gooey. The coffee (guys, they have peanut butter cold brew!) is delicious. The cookies are gigantic and easily sharable, as are the cake slices. 

And if you hop into their virtual queue, you don’t have to worry about missing out on anything while waiting. Plus, the inside of the shop is so neat. It looks like Haunted Mansion collaborated with Tim Burton to create a spooky but still adorable vibe. Take advantage of Gideon’s!

Grab a Dole Whip Sampler from Swirls on the Water

Swirls on the Water is a hidden gem of Disney Springs. A small kiosk right off the bridge in the Marketplace area of Disney Springs, Swirls on the Water, offers a variety of delicious Dole Whip treats. 

Of course, you can grab a classic pineapple Dole Whip or a float, but my favorite is the Dole Whip Sampler. For less than $8, you can sample three Dole Whip swirl combos that are typically swapped out seasonally. 

Dole Whip Sampler at Swirls on the Water at Disney Springs
Dole Whip Sampler at Swirls on the Water at Disney Springs

On our last visit, we tried a cherry/pistachio, strawberry/chocolate, and pineapple/vanilla trio, that was mind-blowing. It was very sharable and easily one of the most delicious things we ate on the trip! And for just under $8 (less than $2 more than a standard Dole Whip Float), it’s a great value!

Visit the World of Disney

Every trip to Disney Springs is complete with a trip to the massive World of Disney store in the heart of Disney Springs. You can find most of your standard Disney merchandise there, from clothes, toys, kitchenware, and more! 

Stitch at World of Disney in Disney Springs

They always have a massive section of seasonal and special occasion offerings, from holidays to anniversaries (the 100 Years of Wonder merchandise is fantastic, by the way). I guarantee that you will find something you have to have if you go in there. I usually find several!

Catch a Movie at AMC

Only some people know this, but Disney Springs has a gigantic movie theater! The theater has dine-in options if you’d like to visit over lunch or dinner, or you can grab an Icee and some popcorn and just relax! We have seen several movies on our visits to Disney Springs over the years and love the beautiful, relaxing ambiance. Plus, lots of air conditioning! You really can’t go wrong!

AMC Theatres at Disney Springs

Coca-Cola Store Rooftop Beverage Bar

If you’ve been to Disney Springs, you’ve probably seen the giant Coca-Cola store. It has a ton of great Coke merchandise and an adorable Coke Polar Bear photo op, but did you know it also has a massive beverage bar on the roof? Head up to the top of the beverage bar to get a refreshing soda, float, Icee, or mocktail while enjoying the views of the Disney Springs from your rooftop perch!

Coca-Cola Store Entrance at Disney Springs

Great Day at Disney Springs 

These are just a few of the dozens of things we like to do while visiting Disney Springs. There’s an infinite number of activity and restaurant combinations you could try. Still, for us, every trip is complete with these things! Building a Disney Springs day into your trip is one of my top tips for the ultimate Disney vacation. Sometimes, it’s nice to take a break from waiting in lines, hurrying between park attractions, and just slow down on some excellent food and shopping. On your next visit to the Most Magical Place on Earth, you’ll also try some of these things!

Author: Ashly Hunt

Ashley co-founded The Midwest Mouse, a Disney Instagram account and blog she started with her husband, Braden. Ashley lives in Indiana with her husband and their two daughters. They are Walt Disney World annual pass holders and visit Disney parks as often as possible. They look forward to crossing more things off their Disney bucket list while continuing to share their adventures on their Instagram (@the_midwest_mouse) and website.

Whether you’re traveling with young children, teens, or adults, we’ve got you covered. From the whimsical fun of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort to the luxurious elegance of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, we’ve got something for everyone. So look at our resort reviews and start planning your dream Disney vacation today!

Leave a Reply

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: