Visiting the Happiest Place on Earth with sick kids

Having sick children is hard. Being on vacation with sick kids is even harder. And it sucks. We just got back from a Disney trip where not one, but both kids got sick. It was possibly that saddest trip of our lives so far.

Wouldn’t you know it, both kids got sick the moment we walked into the beautiful Grand Californian. Literally. Both of them felt warm, and their noses started to run. By nightfall, both girls were miserable. As you can imagine, we were too. Parents get little sleep when the kids are sick. We had a long wait to check into our room this time around. I begged front desk staff to find us a room as soon as possible, so I could get the kids in bed. I don’t doubt that the staff did their best, but it was a miserable wait.


The hotel staff were awesome. They let us know they had a doctor on-site if needed. I knew there was a First Aid station inside both parks, but I knew nothing about an on-site doctor. This was great information to have. Our oldest came down with the shivers, followed by a temperature of 104°. This might seem like no big deal to most parents, but my child hasn’t had a fever since she was six months old. Plus, we had our 10-month-old to worry about. I had no idea how to treat her. It was reassuring to know that if I needed a doctor, one could be to our room within an hour.

IMG_2164After several days of being sick, Emma really wanted to see if she was tall enough for the Jelly Fish ride at California Adventure. We bundled her up and took her into the park for a bit. She made it on the ride, and then immediately wanted to go back to the hotel.

We were able to get over-the-counter medications at a nearby Target, which is just a bus ride away if you don’t have a car. The hotel gift shop also had several options. I never felt like our daughter needed more serious medical attention. If I had, we would have gone to a nearby Urgent Care center, or U.C. Irvine Medical Center, which is even closer.

So don’t worry too much about you or your kids getting sick during a family trip to the happiest place on earth. It’s great to know that if someone in your party gets sick, there are convenient options nearby. Disney hotels make several options available, or the First Aid stations inside the park can help with minor issues. Use them – that’s why they are there!

About this post

I wrote a book about Disneyland

101 Disneyland Tips is available in paperback, Kindle, and many other eBook editions.

Available from

Sign up for our email newsletter, and receive updates, news, travel tips, and more delivered straight to your Inbox.