8. DO Go to the park on an Extra Magic Hours day (if you’re staying at a Disney resort)
Walt Disney World offers Extra Magic Hours as a perk for guests who are staying on property. Most days, a different park will either open early or stay open late, with exclusive access for Disney resort guests. The Magic Kingdom is the biggest of the four theme parks and has the most to so and see, and a full day is never enough. If you have access to Extra Magic Hours, I definitely recommend visiting the Magic Kingdom on one of these days to take advantage of the extra time in the park.
7. DO Choose your Fastpass+ attractions carefully
The Magic Kingdom has the most Fastpass+ options of any of the parks. At the time I am writing this, you have 27 different ways to use your Fastpass+. Since you only get a total of 4 Fastpass+ choices in a day (3 can be pre-selected and another added once you use those), you will want to choose carefully. Choosing Fastpass+ selections is a really personal decision and should be made based on what rides you care the most about. I suggest choosing the 6-8 rides that you are most excited about, and then thinking strategically. For example, if you’re choosing beteen the “mountains” (Space, Splash, Big Thunder, and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train), you might opt to use the Fastpass+ for Big Thunder Mountain because it draws long lines and is a really hot wait, while much of the line for Space Mountain is inside and lines for the Mine Train and Splash Mountain are generaly cooler. If you’re choosing between Peter Pan’s Flight and It’s a Small World, you’ll want to consider that waits for Peter Pan can often be double or triple the wait for Small World. If there is a ride you really want that you don’t get a Fastpass+ for, try heading there first thing in the morning to catch a shorter line.
6. DON’T Think you can do everything in one day
you will just be disappointed. The Magic Kingdom is really a two (or more) day park. If you have time in your vacation, then I recommend spending more than one day here. If you are limited on time and can only swing one day, then just make sure you adjust your expectations. Choose a realistic number of rides to tackle and be happy with that!
5. DON’T Ride Splash Mountain at night when it’s cold out without a change of clothes
I know this is very specific, but I made the mistake once and I want to make sure it doesn’t happen to you. I didn’t say “don’t ride Splash Mountain at night” period, because Splash Mountain is AWESOME at night! Right before the big plunge, you get an amazing view of the park that you can’t see anywhere else. However, if it’s chilly out, please make sure to bring a change of clothes. You can get quite wet on Splash Mountain, and it’s no fun to be wet and cold for the rest of the night!
4. DO Make a game plan
By now, you’ve probably gotten the point that the Magic Kingdom is big. I recommend making a plan for any park you visit, but it’s especially important at the Magic Kingdom. You don’t want to find yourself in Adventureland 5 minutes before your Space Mountain Fastpass+ expires, or waste an hour or more walking back and forth between the various lands. The park is layed out, generally, in a circle, so one efficient way to see the park is to start on one side and work your way around. Get aqauinted with the map before you arrive (available on My Disney Experience App) and make a plan that hits the rides you care most about.
3. DON’T Waste time on a table service meal if you only have one day for this park
Don’t get me wrong – there are some great table service restaurants at the Magic Kingdom. In fact, Cindarella’s Royal Table is one of the most sought after reservations at Walt Disney World. However, if you only have one day at the Magic Kingdom, you’re better off keeping meal times short and spending as much time as possible enjoying the rides. There are plenty of quick service restaurants throughout the park where you can get a decent meal and then be back in line for another ride in 20 or 30 minutes. Hollywood Studios and EPCOT are better options for a table-service meal, since they have less rides and it’s easier to fit in a longer meal.
2. DO Explore the shops on Main Street USA
The shops on Main Street are more than just stores – they’re a full on Disney experience. From a real old-fashioned barber shop, to Crystal Arts where you can get amazing hand blown glass ornaments, to an authentic confectionary, Main Street USA is lined with magical experiences.
1. DO Stay for Happily Ever After fireworks
Disney has always been known for great fireworks shows, and Happily Ever After offers the biggest fireworks spectacular that the Magic Kingdom has ever seen. The show is visually enthralling and pull at your hearts strings as well. With songs and projection from classic Disney movies played throughout the show, you are sure to feel nostalgic. You may even feel a lump in your throat as you gaze up to the sky and take in the show.