Disney Parks vacations are often planned far out in advance. So what do you do if you have a trip scheduled and then find out that you’re pregnant?
No need to cancel your plans — there’s still plenty to enjoy at the Disneyland resort, even if you’re a mama-to-be! I recently vacationed at Disneyland while 35 weeks pregnant and though the trip was different than previous vacations, it was no less enjoyable.
Here are a few things for pregnant moms visiting Disneyland to keep in mind.
First and foremost before you take a trip, get the okay from your doctor. You want to make sure you’re approved for travel and that there aren’t any additional recommendations in regards to medical limitations.
Decide When to Go
Once you get the go-ahead, you need to decide when to visit. Pregnant moms in the first trimester might be sidelined with nausea and exhaustion. The third trimester also proves challenging because of added weight and possibly swollen feet and legs. The second trimester may be best, as hopefully nausea has passed by then and moms aren’t yet in the large and uncomfortable stage.
Mom-to-Be Tip: If you’re flying, be sure to check with the airline (and your doctor) so you aren’t taking a trip too late in your pregnancy. I visited Disneyland in week 35 but we are local, so the car drive wasn’t a hindrance. I still didn’t want to be too far from home that late in the pregnancy.
Know What to Ride
During my vacation, I happened to notice another pregnant mom who was not joining her family on the rides. She didn’t realize that she was able to safely join her family on most of the rides and had been waiting for them at all the exits! Fortunately, Disneyland has plenty of rides and attractions that moms-to-be can ride safely. Certain rides may be challenging for pregnant bellies to navigate however, so get help if you need it when getting in and out of ride vehicles.
Mom-to-Be Tip: Some rides have posted restrictions and a warning for expectant moms. You can also search on the Disneyland website (keyword: “Expectant Mother’s Advisory”). If the ride has an expectant mom warning, don’t ignore it (even if you’re still in the first trimester). These warnings are posted on intense thrill rides or rides that may be rough on the body (including sharp stops or G-force pressure).
What to Bring
Comfortable shoes that are already broken-in are a must. Pack a second pair so you can change in the middle of the day when your feet get sore. A refillable water bottle is another must-have. You can request ice water from any quick service restaurant location to stay hydrated. During warm months, a battery-operated fan and chill towel will help you stay comfortable.
Mom-to-Be Tip: Consider packing yourself an extra shirt in your day bag. I know I always seemed to spill food on my pregnant belly!
That corn dog might sound like a good idea, but heavy or greasy foods may make your expectant tummy queasy! I appreciate that the Disneyland parks offer healthier dishes including salads, veggie burgers, and chilled fresh fruit. You’ll need nutritious food in order to maintain your energy throughout the day.
Mom-to-Be Tip: You can bring snacks with you into the Disneyland parks. Choose healthy and fibrous fruits and veggies, and don’t forget to pack your prenatal vitamins!
Make Time for a Break
Walking the Disneyland parks all day is exhausting! Even more so when you’re pregnant, so work in plenty of breaks where you can just relax and get off your feet. During my vacation (while in my third trimester), I knew it was important that I rest throughout the day. While my family was on a thrill ride, I’d find a bench to sit and enjoy a snack while waiting in the shade. Heading back to the hotel for swimming and a nap is another way to rejuvenate.
Now is the time like never before to listen to your body. Be sure you’re getting plenty of rest throughout the day and lots of sleep at night.
Some of the information in this post may have changed after this writing. Please visit Guest Services online at Disneyland or Walt Disney World, or ask Disney Parks Moms Panel to confirm current policies.