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“One and Done” Picks at Walt Disney World

Every Walt Disney World fan has his or her favorite experiences that never seem to get old no matter how often they’re repeated.  But, let’s face it – all attractions (and food, and merchandise) are not created equal!  As sacrilegious as it may seem, we definitely think there are experiences in WDW you really only need to do (or eat, or buy) once.  Which of these make it onto your list?

1. It’s a Small World

Classic Disney icon?  Or overrated relic featuring the most annoying earworm known to humankind?  Opinions are divided regarding Magic Kingdom’s It’s a Small World.  Regardless of where you fall, you should do this ride once to appreciate its artistry and history.  Once, in our humble opinion, is enough.

2. Victoria and Albert’s

Walt Disney World’s flagship restaurant, Victoria and Albert’s, is a stunner in every way, from the award-winning food to the elegant décor and musical accompaniment.  It receives rave reviews from guests!  But with a very sophisticated menu, a strict dress code, a rule permitting only those age 10 or older entry, and several courses that make for a marathon of a meal and a price tag to match, we’d say it’s perfect for a one-time splurge, to celebrate a special occasion.

3. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith

We love thrill rides, and there aren’t many of them in Hollywood Studios, so you’ll want to try Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith.  With its thrilling 60 mph takeoff, it’s worth doing once.  But it’s really not much more than a roller coaster in the dark with blaring music and some florescent signs, and we wouldn’t bother waiting in line a second time to ride it.

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4. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room

Everyone needs to check out Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room.  It’s like a trip through time, where you’ll experience the pioneering Audio-Animatronics technology that was created decades ago specifically for this attraction, and later used throughout Disney parks.  Set against a Polynesian backdrop, you’ll watch and listen as various tropical birds come to life and entertain you with song and dance.  But chances are you won’t need to experience this nostalgic blast from the past more than once.

5. Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom is a beautiful venue that serves a buffet dinner complete with all of your favorite Hundred Acre Wood pals.  You’ll have fun with your Tigger, Pooh and Piglet photo opps, but unless you’re a serious Winnie-the-Pooh fan, you won’t need to do this twice.  You can find equally good food for a cheaper price elsewhere on property.

6. Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar

Alright, we realize we’re encroaching on sacred territory here.  The Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar is frequently voted one of guests’ favorite snacks on Walt Disney World property, and we get the appeal!  It’s delicious and looks like an adorable pair of Mickey ears, so you will want to try it.  Once.  But let’s face it, it’s really just a normal vanilla ice cream bar coated with chocolate, and there are much more interesting and delicious treats that deserve your attention at every park!

7. Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress

This classic attraction in Tomorrowland at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom is located in a rotating theater that allows you to discover the evolution of technology  throughout the past century.  It was created by Walt himself, and features what was at the time state-of-the-art Audio-Animatronics: reason enough to see this attraction – once.

8. Light-Up Souvenirs

If you’ve ever set foot in Walt Disney World at night, you’ve seen a plethora of light-up merchandise calling to you.  And don’t get us wrong: light-up Mickey Ears, wands, swords and other souvenirs are a ton of fun, especially if it’s your first time at WDW.  But they’re not something you need to spend money on more than once.  You likely won’t use them after your vacation, and they’re not made to last anyway.  We prefer bringing our own, less expensive, glow sticks!

9. Memory Maker

If you don’t want to have to worry about taking the perfect selfie in front of Cinderella Castle, you can let Disney PhotoPass photographers do the work for you!  If you purchase Memory Maker, you’ll have access to all of the shots taken of your family at hundreds of locations on property, and you’ll be able to download them, print them, and share them at your leisure.  This is great if it’s your initial visit, or if it’s a special occasion, but it comes at a price – we’d only do it once.

About Stacy Milford

Stacy has lived in 4 countries on 3 continents, and travels whenever humanly possible. Passionate about music theatre, dessert, and adventure in the great wide somewhere, she visits Walt Disney World every year, usually during Halloween! Stacy currently divides her time between writing and teaching English as a second language to children in China, and is pretty sure growing up is over-rated.