Walt Disney World is a minefield of stimulation. Whether you’re dealing with anxiety, sensory overload, kids who need naps, or just need a break, we’ve got you covered. Finding places that are quiet, secluded, and don’t require you to leave the parks is key. Luckily, Disney Parks are covered in quiet spaces that offer seating, shade, indoor options, and respite from the chaos. If you need to get away from the crowds, noise, and overwhelm, here are all the places in each Disney Park we’ve found to Take a Break at Disney.
We’ll be sharing the best locations to Relax and Take a Break at Disney in the parks, and at their nearby resorts. Because while a panic attack or nursing at Disney may require the closest quiet location, other situations may require that you remove yourself from the parks completely.
If you’re dealing with a cognitive disability, frequent anxiety, sensory overload, or anything else that affects your Disney park time, be sure to check out the Walt Disney World Attraction Details. This guide includes information on loud sounds, light sequences, darkness levels, and more. We’ve pulled together this list of Places at Walt Disney World to Take a Break and Relax for the following people and situations. Hopefully, it helps you.
- People with Anxiety at Disney
- People with Special Needs at Disney
- Nursing Mothers at Disney
- People with Autism at Disney
- People with Physical Limitations at Disney
- People that Need a Break at Disney
- People that Need a Quiet Place to Sit at Disney
- People that are Easily Stimulated at Disney
- People that are Overwhelmed at Disney
- ….Pretty Much All People
Take A Break at Disney World
If you’re looking for a Quiet Place at Walt Disney World, then there are many options. Or maybe just a chance to Take a Break from the Crowds at Disney World? There are places for that too. What about a quiet place for nursing at Disney, or handling an anxiety attack? While these aren’t the things you typically think of when planning a Disney Vacation, the chances of you needing to use a quiet place at Disney World are pretty good. Shoulder-to-shoulder crowds and nonstop sensory stimulation are inevitable. But, never fear! There are ways you can handle things in the moment. We speak from lots of experience here. Even as avid Disney vacationers, who have dealt with crowds before, there are times when you need to get away! Times when you may just need a quiet, dark space.
We’re sharing a few options for you to take a break at Walt Disney World, in the parks, at their nearby resorts, and even on a few calm Disney rides. All can help you recenter and gives you the chance to relax at Disney World, no matter where you are.
- 1 Where to Take a Break in Magic Kingdom
- 2 Calming Rides at Magic Kingdom
- 3 Resorts Near Magic Kingdom to Take a Break
- 4 Where to Take a Break in Animal Kingdom
- 5 Calming Rides at Animal Kingdom
- 6 Resorts Near Animal Kingdom to Take a Break
- 7 Where to Take a Break in Hollywood Studios
- 8 Calming Rides at Hollywood Studios
- 9 Resorts Near Hollywood Studios to Take a Break
- 10 Where to Take a Break in EPCOT Park
- 11 Calming Rides at EPCOT Park
- 12 Resorts Near EPCOT Park to Take a Break
Where to Take a Break in Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom has done a good job of repurposing some unused spaces into places where people can take a much-needed break. And true to form, many of them are hidden! So you may not realize they exist right away. Which is a good thing. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, or need somewhere to recharge, here are the best Quiet Places at Magic Kingdom we’ve found so far. Be sure to grab the Magic Kingdom Map to help you get your bearings in the park.
Main Street U.S.A Train Station
Right at the front of Magic Kingdom Park is the Main Street Train Station. In order to reach the areas where you can achieve some quiet, go up the steps of the station. There is a lovely outdoor balcony here, for castle pictures, but it remains largely uninhabited, providing a nice quiet space to observe. We most like the tranquility of the indoor area at the Magic Kingdom Train Station. With a few benches, set aside from the area where guests line up to board the train, you can separate yourself from the crowd.
Casey’s Corner Seating Area
Facing Cinderella’s Castle, and right next to Main Street U.S.A, this location can sometimes get crowded but offers shaded tables, and proximity to the first aid center and restrooms. Most empty outside of meal times, this place to take a break in Disney World, can also help you feel like you’re not missing out. Especially if your needed downtime requires sitting or staying put for a while.
Plaza Restaurant Seating Area
Another great place to relax at Disney World is right behind the Plaza Restaurant. Just past the Starbucks on Main Street U.S.A and close to the restrooms at Tomorrowland Terrace, this area offers another spot that can get you views of the action, while you relax in the shade. While this area can sometimes be congested at meal times, for the most part this area of the park has fewer crowds.
Tomorrowland Terrace Seating Area
This restaurant in Magic Kingdom is open seasonally, and only intermittently at that. Used mostly for Fireworks Dessert Parties, this shaded open-air dining space offers up tables, chairs, and distance from circulating crowds. While this area is sometimes roped off, if you or your child is feeling unwell, or fighting off a panic attack, simply ask a cast member if you’re able to sit in this space. Most of the time this space is open and available if you need to take a break at Magic Kingdom.
Merchant of Venus Indoor Seating Area
A great place to relax if you’re dealing with sensory overload is the Venus of Merchant room in Tomorrowland. Right next to Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies, this little space is far enough removed from the masses, that you can truly escape here. With posters on the walls and ample seating, this area also has a Fuel Rod exchange machine if you need to change out your fuel rod. A great place to take a break, relax, calm down, whatever you need.
Liberty Square Seating Area
Hidden behind the Ye Olde Christmas Shop, this space is a godsend if you’re looking for something really secluded. This small area wraps behind a few buildings just off the main thoroughfare of Liberty Square and allows you an outside resting spot. Complete with trees for shade, this place with picnic tables at Magic Kingdom is rarely crowded. If you’re looking for a nice outdoor space to relax at Disney World, that doesn’t require leaving the park, this is it.
Storybook Circus Area Near Big Top Souvenirs
If you’re near the back of Magic Kingdom, the Storybook Circus Area has several seating locations that are just perfect for relaxing. Especially if you find yourself “stuck” at the back of the park during a breakdown of any kind. Just on the other side of the Big Top Souvenir’s Shop ( which also has some indoor seating), you will find a slew of outdoor tables, and a covered seating area under the big tent. While this space is sometimes home to a character meet and greet, it is more often empty.
We also like this area for the Goofy Glaciers slushies and treats inside. So if you’re blood sugar is dropping and you’re looking for a spot to sit with the kids while you refuel, this space offers that. This area is also nearby the Walt Disney World Train Station, so if you need to get back to the front of the park in a hurry, you can grab the train to Main Street from here.
Calming Rides at Magic Kingdom
Something else we usually need when we’re feeling Anxious at Disney World is the right kind of environment. As that’s sometimes a quiet place or a dark space, it can also be a calming ride. Thankfully, Magic Kingdom has a few calmer attractions we always try when we need a break.
- PeopleMover Transit Authority: This ride has periods of darkness, but easier turns, and a slower pace than many rides.
- Carousel of Progress: This attraction is literally just sitting and watching an animatronic show. Pretty low-key, and very calming.
- Liberty Square Riverboat: You’ll have boat whistles on this one, but a smooth river ride at a slow pace gets you views of trees and Liberty Square.
- Walt Disney World Railroad: Train whistles and stops at stations surrounding the park are the only disruptions here.
- Swiss Family Tree House: If you’re able to walk, then the Tree House provides a step claiming experience with small stops along the way to explore.
Resorts Near Magic Kingdom to Take a Break
One of our favorite things to add to every Disney Vacation is Resort Hopping. While this pastime is more about exploring and taking it all in, it’s also a great way to remove yourself from the busy parks if needed. And luckily, Magic Kingdom has two resort areas that are just a stone’s throw away from the entrance. Making a short break to these resorts is a good idea on days you need it. All these resorts offer ample lobby space for lounging, trails to walk, grab-and-go food, restaurants, and some even have beaches.
Accessible via the Resort Monorail just outside the entrance of Magic Kingdom, there are three Monorail Resorts to choose from. Note that if a boat ride is more your style, then these resorts are also accessible via the boat dock just outside the Magic Kingdom Park entrance.
- Disney’s Contemporary Resort: This resort has a Joffrey coffee counter and several lobby spaces on the ground floor for relaxing. It’s also accessible via a walking path from Magic Kingdom that takes about 5 minutes.
- Polynesian Village Resort: The Polynesian includes lounge chairs on the beach near the villas and dole whip at Pineapple Lanai. Generally, a peaceful resort to visit, you can also grab seating placed throughout the lobby.
- Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort: This grand hotel has a large multi-story lobby, that often includes a piano player, which can bring its own sense of calm. And outdoor seating on the large veranda. You can also take the Walking Path from the Grand Floridian back to Magic Kingdom, if you want some alone time. It’s about a 20-minute walk.
By far our favorite places to visit when we need downtime are the Wilderness Resorts at Walt Disney World. You get to these Disney Resorts by Boat, as there is a boat launch at the Magic Kingdom entrance. Both offer ample opportunities in nature and are usually just what you need to decompress from a stressful park day.
- Disney’s Wilderness Lodge: This sprawling resort brings you to the nature-filled pacific northwest and gives you the opportunity to surround yourself with nature. There are tables just outside the Roaring Fork Cafe, and seating near the Geyser Point Bar and Grill overlooking the water. All great places to lounge and take a break at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.
- Fort Wilderness Campgrounds: If you need more nature, then you can head a little farther to Fort Wilderness Resort and Campgrounds. This resort has loungers on a sandy beach, a playground close to the dock, and loads of trails.
Where to Take a Break in Animal Kingdom
Of all the parks at Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom is by far one of the best places to take a break. Mainly, because the entire park is covered in nature at its best. It’s thankfully, also, Disney’s World’s largest park, which means you feel the crowds here less. However, if you find yourself in need of respite then there are some really great spaces here to find calm. Be sure to Grab the Animal Kingdom Map to help you get your bearings in the park.
The Discovery Island Trail
One of the best places to take a break at Walt Disney World is the Discovery Island Trail which winds along the base of the Tree of Life. This pathway is often empty and offers views of Discovery River and plenty of spots to relax and recharge. Feel free to hang out here as long as you need. We love searching for all the animals that cover the Tree of Life and just taking the time to take a break.
Yak and Yeti Local Foods Cafe Seating Area
We recently discovered the Yak and Yeti Local Foods Cafe on the pathway to Asia in Animal Kingdom. Regardless of whether or not you choose to eat here, the seating area offers an open-air sheltered space away from the crowds. There’s also a Joffrey’s coffee shop just across the midway, so if you need an iced tea while you decompress, it’s nearby.
Tamu Tamu Refreshments Seating Area
Another great space that’s very secluded is the hidden space behind Tamu Tamu Refreshments on the Asia pathway. This area overlooks Discovery River and includes tables under umbrellas and a small closed-in area with even more tables. Nestled just near the Joffreys coffee shop, this area is hardly ever busy and hidden by trees, so offers a great opportunity to get away from the crowds.
Harmabe Market Seating Area
This area of Animal Kingdom is a great place to take a break. Harambe Market can get busy during the summer when the counter service windows are open, but throughout the rest of the year, this area stays somewhat empty. Mostly in the shade, the tables in this area are a great place to sit down and relax in Animal Kingdom. Nearby you can find restrooms, the pathway to Gorilla Falls, and even fresh fruits at the market stand.
Pandora Seating Area
Just off the pathway from Africa to Pandora is a slew of seating spaces. Sometimes busy because of the Flight of Passage line, this space in Pandora offers benches and ledges where you can relax. And as it’s nearest the long pathway from Africa to Pandora, there are also opportunities to stroll the pathway, which is adjacent to the river.
Calming Rides at Animal Kingdom
If you’re looking for calming rides and attractions at Animal Kingdom then there are a few to consider. Know that most of Animal Kingdom has ample seating for a stop or break, so you can find areas of respite within attractions not included here.
- Kilimanjaro Safari: This ride typically takes about 20 minutes and offers you views of the savanna from the seat of a safari truck.
- Feathered Friends in Flight: This attraction is a bird show that allows you to take a break and learn about birds. Perfect if you’re looking for a way to relax.
- Maharajah Jungle Trek: Since this trail is located near the back of the park, it tends to be slightly less crowded than Gorilla Falls. Home to the Tigers and other animals of Asia, this pathway is tree-lined and offers an escape from theme park life.
- Discovery River Theater: Home to rows and rows of bleachers, this space is often able to be accessed by those in need of a seat. While Animal Kingdom doesn’t currently have shows happening on the river, you can sometimes see a Disney Character Cavalcade here, floating down the river.
Resorts Near Animal Kingdom to Take a Break
Given that Animal Kingdom is the most removed of all Disney World parks, due to its vast acreage, the resorts associated with Animal Kingdom are minimal. In fact, it is the only Animal Kingdom Lodge that is considered to be an Animal Kingdom Resort. And while you cannot walk, monorail, or take a boat to the resort, a bus ride to Animal Kingdom Lodge is only about 10 minutes.
Animal Kingdom Lodge
This resort is by far one of the MOST RELAXING Disney Resorts at Walt Disney World. As such, if you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed or need somewhere to take a break at Animal Kingdom, this is the closest thing you’ll get to home. A Disney Deluxe Resort, this resort comes with all the amenities you need to relax. The Mara Quick Service Commissary has mug stations for your refillable mug. There are alcoves throughout the outdoor area by the pool with seating. You can find rockers on the porches overlooking the savannah. And the lobby has multiple spaces adjacent also filled with seats for lounging. If you’re looking for a calm and quiet place to relax, Animal Kingdom Lodge has everything you need.
Where to Take a Break in Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios park is pretty small. As a result, it feels crowded A LOT. But, don’t let that deter you from seeking out all the spaces that can help you regain your calm, and relax. Here we share several areas that include seating, tucked-away spaces, and attractions that encourage you to sit back and relax. Be sure to Grab the Hollywood Studios Map to help you get your bearings in the park.
Echo Lake Alcoves
Surrounding Echo Lake you can find small areas filled with tables that line the lake’s edge. These spaces are very removed from the crowds and offer an opportunity to sit, relax and enjoy the scenery.
Pixar Place Area
The Pixar Place area at Hollywood Studios used to be home to meet and greets and the Incredibles, but now it’s fairly vacant, in terms of activity. As such you can find some benches that line this area, nearby restrooms, and Joffrey’s Coffee. It’s a good place to rest, and far enough removed from the midway traffic that you feel more secluded than elsewhere in the park.
Muppets 3-D Courtyard
Another favorite place to go for respite is the Muppets 3-D Courtyard Area. While this space houses the 3-D attraction and restrooms, it also includes a back alley near Mama Melrose’s Italian. This space is often empty and a good place to go if you need quiet. In the past both the Christmas Shop and the Muppets Gift Shop were open, but now we rarely see these spaces active. PizzeRizzo in this space also has some lovely tables with umbrellas regardless of whether or you eat there or not.
Tower of Terror Courtyard
If you head down Sunset Boulevard toward the Tower of Terror there’s a small courtyard that includes the gift shop, a Joffrey’s coffee cart, and plenty of seating. Ledges line this space, and there are several benches perfect for taking a break. This area is so well hidden in the park, that it makes for a wonderful place to truly remove yourself from the crowds and take a break at Disney.
Calming Rides at Hollywood Studios
While Hollywood Studios may be known for Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge, the places where you’ll find the fewest people may not even be on your radar! While certain attractions like Muppet’s 3-D Theatre, Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular, and Beauty and the Beast Live Onstage all offer ample seating and a show, the nature of these shows can sometimes be more stimulating than you’re ready for. As such, here are a few of the better attractions at Hollywood Studios that may offer a calm experience.
- Vacation Fun with Mickey Mouse: This short film features Mickey and Pluto as they get ready for vacation. Housed in a small theater near A Frozen Sing-Along, this show is about 20 minutes long and is essentially just cartoons on a screen. No 3-D or 4-D special effects here.
- One Man’s Dream Exhibit: This walking exhibit features elements from Walt Disney’s life, the parks, films, and the history that shaped the Walt Disney Company. While there are no places to sit here, this attraction is indoors, offers dimmed lighting, and is rarely crowded.
- Disney Skyliner: The Disney Skyliner just outside Hollywood Studios may not be a ride, but does offer a sky ride experience that could be rather calming. With no need to actually depart at any of the stops, if you’re looking for something to calm anxiety, ( and don’t mind heights) we’d suggest you request a skyliner cabin to yourself.
Resorts Near Hollywood Studios to Take a Break
If you find yourself in need of a break nearby Hollywood Studios Park then you’re in luck. Because in addition to finding Disney Resorts that are within walking distance of the park, you can also head to the Disney BoardWalk. Accessible via the walking pathway, Skyliner, or Boat, these Disney Boardwalk Resorts are all great places to take a break at Disney World.
- Walt Disney World Swan Hotel: The Swan Hotel can be found just across the bridge on the walking path from Hollywood Studios to EPCOT. It houses a large lobby, indoor and outdoor seating, and a place to grab a coffee and snack if needed.
- Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel: The Dolphin Hotel is direct across from the Swan and includes beaches with loungers, and a variety of spaces to take a break while visiting. This hotel also has a boat dock that can bring you back to Hollywood Studios or as far as EPCOT if needed.
- Disney’s Boardwalk Inn: Running alongside the pathway from Hollywood Studios is Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. This resort features a coffee shop, a large lobby, lawn space, benches, and even the Belle Vue Lounge. Belle Vue Lounge offers up a living room feeling, indoors on the second floor, and since they don’t typically open until 4 pm, can be found somewhat empty earlier in the day.
- Disney’s Yacht Club: This resort offers outdoor and indoor seating, and is home to Ale and Compass for quick to-go meals. We also love this resort for the courtyards throughout, offering plenty of tables and chairs for taking a break at Disney.
Where to Take a Break in EPCOT Park
EPCOT Park may not have ready tables for any festival, but it does have plenty of hidden spaces for retreat. Often filled with crowds during the annual festivals it may seem impossible to find places that aren’t crowded but hear us out! From calm rides to places throughout the World Showcase, you can find areas with benches and places to relax. Be sure to grab the EPCOT Park Map to help you get your bearing in the park.
Victoria Gardens World Showcase Canada
One of the most beautiful places at EPCOT Park can be found in World Showcase Canada. The Victora Garden area does not have benches along the pathway but is adjacent to the covered Kidcot Area found at the exit of Canada Far and Wide. This space offers ledges, shelter, and other places to relax while at EPCOT. And our next area to take a break at Disney is just up the stairs nearby, so you have a couple of choices here.
Canada’s Rocky Mountain Waterfall
If you take the hidden pathway near the base of the waterfall at Victoria Gardens, it leads you not only to the entrance of Canada Far and Wide but also to the upper part of the area featuring the Chateau Laurier courtyard space. This space includes several benches and places to relax. All with the sounds of rushing water in the background. We love this space especially, since so few people come back here, save for a few photos every now and then.
The Marketplace World Showcase Morocco
The Morocco pavilion at EPCOT has several locations throughout that make for great escapes. But several areas that used to be shops, have since been set up with tables and chairs. These areas are littered throughout the country and offer shade and removal from the crowds. While we’re not sure what the future of these spaces may look like you can find plenty of seating here.
American Adventure Lobby and Courtyard at the America Pavilion
The interior of the American Adventure building is filled with benches along the walls, for taking a break in the air conditioning. You can also take in the Native American exhibit if you’re looking for an escape from the crowds. A few times a day this space features the Voices of Liberty performers. The courtyard space includes loads of picnic tables for taking a break and eating at the Regal Eagle BBQ Smokehouse and the festival kitchen. As such, ample seating can be found throughout. There are benches, nearby restrooms, and water fountains for whatever you may need during your Disney break.
Hyde Park at the United Kingdom Pavilion
A hidden area of EPCOT can be found just behind the main buildings of the United Kingdom. Across from Rose and Crown, you’ll find a winding brick pathway that leads back to this space. The Hyde Park area is surrounded by benches and houses mini gardens. In the evenings this area gets filled with guests listening to cover bands playing their favorite British songs. Still, in the daytime hours, it remains rather empty.
The Odyssey Building
One of the larger indoor locations that offer up tables and chairs can be found in the Odyssey Building. This space at EPCOT Park is sometimes used for festivals. But it is yet another location that has nearby restrooms, water fountains, and outdoor benches.
This newer indoor space at EPCOT includes both a Starbucks and the Connections Cafe Quick Service Counter. While primarily a restaurant space, there is ample seating throughout designed for lounging. With couches, chairs, tables, and ledges you can stop in, and grab a spot to rest. Plus grab whatever else you may need. Visit off meal times to have the best chance at good seating.
Sea Base at the Aquarium
If you head towards the Seas Building you can wander the aquarium at your leisure. This often uncrowded space offers you the most relaxing experience of all; watching fish. There are some benches littered throughout. But as a place to relax, this one provides a mental break. As your mind shifts from the chaos outside to all the varieties of fish swimming around, you’re sure to gain some peace from the experience.
Calming Rides at EPCOT Park
Of all the parks, EPCOT park probably has the most calming ride and attraction options. Here you’ll find boat rides, slow rides, and shows that are simply easy to watch.
- Canada Far and Wide: This 360 film is a standing attraction and shows footage of Canada’s great outdoors, cities, and more. If you’re looking for something that tells you a story and gets you out of the heat and crowds, then this film is an option. Located in World Showcase Canada.
- Living with the Land: This boat ride can be found in The Land Building in the World Nature area. Featuring a slow-moving ride through the history of agriculture in America. This ride is filled with plants and offers up a way to just relax while taking it easy on the ride and learning. As one of our favorite Disney Homeschool attractions, this ride has minimal waits throughout the day and offers sights, sounds, and smells that are comforting to the senses.
- Spaceship Earth: Another educational ride, Spaceship Earth takes you on a journey through the history of humanity. This ride is slow-moving and offers a chance to sit back and relax. This storytelling ride is mostly in darkness with scenes throughout. Which can often be perfect for days with migraines or stress.
- Soarin’: The epitome of relaxing, for many, is flying over the world on Soarin’. Filled with smells of orange groves, the ocean, and dirt, this ride can help you reclaim sanity through your senses. While it’s not a viable ride for those who dislike heights, if you’re looking for something calming that doesn’t involve just sitting on a bench, this is it.
Resorts Near EPCOT Park to Take a Break
Closest to the Disney Boardwalk Resorts, EPCOT offers an easy route out of the park via the International Gateway. Located at the back of the park between France and the United Kingdom, these back gates lead to the Disney Skyliner, and Disney’s Boardwalk. Several Resorts can be found here. Of them, Disney’s Beach Club, Yacht Club, and Boardwalk Inn. All have their own charm. The Boardwalk also offers beaches, loungers, and lawns to rest on.
- Disney’s Beach Club: This resort includes smells of aloe and cucumber in the lobby, ample beach space, and a fancy coffee machine in the gift shop. If you don’t need to go inside, take advantage of the beach space and just relax. Put your feet in the sand and watch the boats sail by. Never crowded, the Boardwalk is an excellent place to go, if you need to get away.
- Disney’s Yacht Club: The Yacht Club’s best feature is its deep porches with rocking chairs. Found just outside the Ale and Compass restaurant, you can settle down for a quiet time. Restrooms, an ice cream shop, and snacks are all found here if you need something more.
- Boardwalk Inn Resort: The Boardwalk Inn has a large lobby, an adjacent coffee shop, and seating under the veranda for rest and relaxation. You can also grab tables overlooking the water if that’s more your style.
Take A Break at Disney World
Hopefully, this post has helped you get a handle on the spaces you’re looking for in each park. So that you can take your Disney Vacation with some peace of mind. If you’re looking for even more support at Walt Disney World, be sure to check out the Disney World Guide for Guests with Special Needs for more information.
Rochelle Mariah is a writer, designer and photographer with an MLIS in Information Science and a B.S. in Arch and Design. Determined to make Planning a DIY Disney Vacation easier she makes lots of lists and drinks lots of coffee. When not designing apparel at Polka Dot Pixie Shop, she's watching old movies and planning the holidays. She has been traveling to Disney destinations since 2010.