Experience the “Disney Difference” with an Adventures by Disney trip!

Adventures by Disney Monument Valley Cowboy Pin


Going on an Adventures by Disney trip is unlike any other vacation your family will take and most of that uniqueness comes from the “Disney Difference.”

What is Adventures by Disney?

Members of our family have been on three different Adventures by Disney trips. We just returned from our first trip with the entire family for the Arizona/Utah itinerary where we visited Sedona, Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and Arches National Park.

Adventures by Disney Grand Canyon

Many of our friends think we’re just going to Disneyland or Disney World and having an adventure. That’s not an Adventures by Disney trip.

Adventures by Disney is a guided, group travel option offered by Walt Disney Travel Company. Most people are familiar with the guided group trips that families take in Europe. That’s essentially what you have with an Adventures by Disney trip, but they take it to a whole new level with the Disney Difference and go to many more destinations than just Europe.

What is the “Disney Difference?”

The Disney Difference is what sets Adventures by Disney apart from all other guided group travel options. It’s group family travel in a way that only Disney can pull off. Private and exclusive access, group travel that includes the whole family, local guides providing more in-depth destination knowledge, the best adventure guides in the business, and so much more. Just as you would expect from any Disney product, the people set them apart from everyone else.

Adventures by Disney Guides

As soon as you start your vacation, you’ll meet two Adventure guides. Immediately, this sets Disney apart from all other guided group travel experiences. Two guides. Not one.

Adventures by Disney Guides

Your guides will ensure that you have everything you need for your vacation. Where you need to be, when you need to be there, how much things cost, take your pictures for you, places (tourist traps) to avoid, and so on.

They also provide you with a TON of information about the destinations on your itinerary. Ever been on a vacation and wish you could just stop or slow down long enough to read a few of those informational signs to get a more in-depth experience? I know I have. With Adventures by Disney, you don’t have to worry about that. Your Adventure guides provide you with all that information and more! You’ll come away with so much knowledge about the places you’ve visited. I love it!

You’ll find that you also become friends with your guides. I’m still friends with one of our guides from our first Adventures by Disney trip to Peru, even though it was almost 4 years ago. You don’t make that kind of connection with the guides on other guided group travel trips. In fact, on that Peru trip, at the pinnacle of the experience (going to Machu Picchu), the guided group in front of us waiting for the bus to the top of the mountain didn’t even know their guide’s name!

That’s the Disney Difference with guides.

Adventures by Disney Family Fun

Even though we may not be going to Disney World, this is still a Disney trip, right? You’re darn tooting, pardner! Adventures by Disney will always include the kids in the itinerary. Whether it’s games to keep them interested on the bus trips or an evening dedicated to them, the kids are never forgotten or left out.

On our recent Arizona Utah trip, the Adventure guides took all the kids one evening for dinner and games. This gave the parents a chance for a nice romantic dinner and the kids had a BLAST playing capture the flag, making new friends, and getting their own kid-friendly dinner. The kids were happy. Mom and Dad were happy. What more could you ask for on a family vacation? A small touch (the Disney Difference) that made a HUGE difference.

Sunset During our Adventures by Disney Romantic Dinner

Sunset During our Romantic Dinner

Adventures by Disney Local Experts

During our latest trip, we had “hop on” guides (they hopped onto the bus with us) that Disney calls their “local experts.” We had a local expert guide us around the Grand Canyon, another one at Monument Valley, and another one at Arches National Park.

These “local experts” provide in-depth knowledge and information that you won’t get anywhere else. It deepens the experience you have on vacation and dramatically increases the value of your trip.

Adventures by Disney Local Experts

At the Grand Canyon, we didn’t have to sit and wait with a bunch of other tourists for a park ranger talk during one of the busiest times of the year. We had that talk with our local expert. Just our group.

At Arches, our local expert guided us to the Delicate Arch. Making sure we safely made it to and from the Arch on the 3 mile hike.

Delicate Arch at Arches National Park

Adventures by Disney Insider Access

Other than the guides, Disney’s insider access is the best part of the Disney Difference. On every Adventures by Disney trip you will experience things that only ABD travelers get to experience.

On the Peru trip, we walked right past the line to Machu Picchu to access this majestic ruin. No wait. We ate a meal in a palace that only Disney has access to for group events.

The Arizona and Utah itinerary was no different.

At Bearizona, we watched a rare black jaguar learn to behave and get fed. An experience that Bearizona only provides to Adventures by Disney guests. You can’t buy it.

In Monument Valley, we had lunch, in the valley. Authentic Navajo tacos that we helped create and learned about the Navajo nation from a tribe member. Again, an experience only available to ABD guests.

You want lunch at the Barking Frog in Sedona? Only if you’re on the Adventures by Disney trip. Dinner in the Thunderbird Lodge, on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, at sunset, with Native American dancers explaining their culture to you? Yep. Only on an ABD trip.

Grand Canyon Sunset

Grand Canyon Sunset from Thunderbird Lodge

None of these Disney Differences have even touched on several other features of an Adventures by Disney trip that sets them apart from the rest.

Magical Luggage. My wife’s favorite. Your luggage disappears and reappears wherever your trip takes you. Once you get off the plane, Disney takes care of the rest. Leave it outside your room in Sedona and it magically appears at the Grand Canyon lodging. Waiting for you like it knew where you’d be, next.

Check in. What check in? You arrive at Enchantment Resort in Sedona after a LONG day of flying into Phoenix, checking out the saguaro cacti, visiting the Montezuma Castle National Monument, and I’m sure the first thing you want to do is wait in line to check in at a resort. Yeah, right!!?? With ABD, no worries! You get off the bus, you’re presented with the key to your room and whisked away on a golf cart to get settled in before dinner. No stress. No waiting. Oh, and as I mentioned above, no luggage.

You want to see the Grand Canyon by helicopter? No sweat! (Well, maybe a little sweat. It is the desert in summer.) Adventures by Disney won’t pay for the helicopter, but they will provide you with transportation to and from the airport for the excursion. You want to stay in Moab a little longer so you can do a jet boat ride on the Colorado? Done! The bus will be waiting for you after your ride, with towels to dry off, too!

As a family, we’ve traveled thousands upon thousands of miles (we average over 50,000 miles per year on our car — that’s just road trips). We’ve camped, boon docked, stayed in luxury suites, done cruises, and taken many guided group travel trips. I can say, without a doubt, Adventures by Disney stands out from all the rest and it’s all due to a little thing called the Disney Difference.

Adventures by Disney Arizona Utah