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What to do with [11-and-13-year-old] kids when the grownups are eating a fancy dinner: ideas?


Well-Known Member
Original Poster
DH and I are thinking about dinner at Napa Rose. Our kids, who will be 11 and 13 when we visit Disneyland, are not interested in eating such fancy fare.

Both kids are trustworthy and responsible, and haven't needed babysitters for a couple of years. Plus, we'd be texting back and forth with them to check on their whereabouts. Still, even though they're tall for their ages and look a couple of years older, they're just shy of being old enough to enter the parks by themselves (the rule is that in order to enter a park, guests under 14 must be accompanied by at least one guest who is 14-or-older).

What are some ways they could spend 2-3 hours without us? We'll be staying at the Disneyland Hotel at that point (we're doing a split stay offsite/onsite). We could leave them in the room with a movie and a room service "budget," but would they be allowed to accept a room service order with no adults in the room? Could they visit the pool without an adult? (The pool is shallow, and the kids are experienced competitive swimmers.) Could they even tour a park for a little bit -- California Adventure would be right there next to where we're dining -- so long as we enter the park with them, and rejoin them after dinner? That's actually the option I'd prefer, as I feel they're closest and safest that way, and it would be a convenient spot from which to leave for Napa Rose, but I feel like that runs afoul of the spirit of the "guest under 14 must be accompanied by older guest to enter the park" rule, even though it doesn't technically violate the letter of the law. Or is there just no way, within the rules, for them to be on their own for a little bit? Your thoughts and experiences would be much appreciated!
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Ismael Flores

Well-Known Member
I think your idea about California Adventure is best. You will probably be more comfortable knowing they are inside the theme park at only a few yards from where you are dining. They will also be able to have quick access to you guys if needed. Staying at the hotel whether in the pool or room would be safe but at a farther distance if for some reason you guys need to get to them. I personally wouldn't feel comfortable leaving them at the pool alone, there are so many things that could go wrong. People around pool areas usually go into their own world and their main objective is their own children.
You said your children are trustworthy and responsible so I'm sure that a couple hours at the park wouldn't be a problem. It is not like you are just going to drop them off in the morning and come back at night.

Enjoy your dinner and family trip!!


Well-Known Member
I think you being on-property is following the spirit of the rule of being 14.

Remember, Disneyland is much more of a locals park, and many SoCal parents have used the parks as a drop off babysitting service. The parents could be over a hour away.... If that kid gets hurt, or breaks the rules, or doesn't get picked up, well, Disney is very limited in how to handle the situation. You will be right there, and your kids do have a cell phone that can be used to contact you. Let them enjoy either DCA and/or Disneyland.

Have a great trip.


Well-Known Member
First time me and my brother and cousin was left alone to go to the parks by ourselves we were around your kids age. We stayed at the DLH and went to the park on our own all day and met our parents later that night. GREAT time! And this was before the age of smart phones and you can be tracked every second of the day. When we left that room, we couldn't be found unless we called them from wherever we were. So let them go have a good time being on their own and you guys can have a relaxing dinner in the process. Everyone is happy.
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