When Walt Disney World is mentioned, the image that comes to mind is likely Cinderella Castle in the iconic Magic Kingdom. The first Park at Disney World Resort opened in 1971, so it’s hard not to fall in love with this Disney original. It is no accident that Magic Kingdom Park draws millions of visitors annually and is the picture of the American family vacation.
After all, even popular sitcoms have taken their characters to Magic Kingdom on a Disney vacation over the years. The Magic Kingdom is so much more than a theme Park; it truly transports Guests into another world. From chowing down on a Dole Whip or visiting Tom Sawyer Island to riding Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress, a day in Magic Kingdom Park is unmatched. But some reasons I love Disney’s Magic Kingdom may seem a bit odd. Here are some unique reasons why I love the Magic Kingdom.
Movie Inspired Rides
The movie-inspired rides in the Parks set Disneyland Resort and later Walt Disney World Resort apart from every other amusement Park in the world. Becoming a part of your favorite Walt Disney movie is just as attractive to Guests today as it was when the Parks first opened.
Exploring Ariel’s grotto or blowing through Pooh’s ride on a “very blustery day” allow Guests the opportunity to become part of the story and get to know their favorite characters in a new way. The Magic Kingdom takes Walt Disney movie memories to a new dimension for children and adults in the storybook rides. Soar with Peter Pan or ride the skies of Agrabah with Aladdin on The Magic Carpets of Aladdin.
We know you want that perfect Instagram photo on vacation. Who doesn’t love the photo opportunities at the Magic Kingdom?! Castle photos, character meets, and of course, photos with a smoked turkey leg, Dole Whip or Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar are must-have Magic Kingdom photos.
Is your family part of a Disney Dynasty? If so, why not remember the magic of previous trips by recreating photos? Recreating family photos at the Magic Kingdom is always a fun way to update family albums and create more fun memories. Don’t forget about the iconic spots or poses in the Park. The Purple Wall, entrances to each land, wishing well near Cinderella Castle, or holding a Mickey balloon on Main Street, U.S.A., are all great ideas for that perfect picture!
Might it sound corny to say that Disney’s architecture is impressive? Absolutely, but it’s also true. Even Disney newbies will glance around the Park in amazement at the attention to detail and dazzling architecture. Each land is designed with the perfect theming in mind. Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square, Frontierland, Adventureland, Tomorrowland and Fantasyland, and Main Street, U.S.A., account for historical details from the era they were set in, in the architecture. Futuristic design in Tomorrowland and Medieval architecture in Fantasyland are enchanting. The details and magic are not limited to the rides. You’ll feel immersed in the stories simply by walking through the lands.
Magic Kingdom’s theming is incredible. Unlike other famous theme parks, details like Cast Member costuming immerse Guests in theming and stories. Every decision in Magic Kingdom was made deliberately, from the varying costumes of Cast Members across the Park and rides to the themed menus throughout the Park restaurants. The placement of each of the Park sectors is perfect for traffic flow, and seamless theming changes keep the magic flowing as Guests roam the Park.
Decades after the creation of the Park, the Magic Kingdom is as timeless as ever. Ride renovations, shows, character meets, and parades may change or retire, but the Most Magical Place On Earth has remained fairly unchanged since its creation. The Park design inspired straight from the movies is just as beautiful, exciting, and magical to visitors today as it was decades ago at the Park opening.
Even better, the updates and new additions to the Magic Kingdom and all Disney Parks mean that Guests always have new exciting experiences awaiting them on their next Disney vacation. That was Walt Disney’s dream that Disney Parks change and innovate as the years pass.
Great Character Meets
Princess face time is a coveted commodity at Walt Disney World. The Magic Kingdom provides organized lightning lane technology to meet your favorite princess at Princess Fairytale Hall. A diverse group of characters gather at the Park entrance a few times a day for meet and greet and characters are found dispered throughout their appropriate lands.
Woody & Jessie in Frontierland, Buzz Lightyear in Tomorrowland and Alice, the White Rabbit, and the Queen of Hearts can be seen in Fantasyland. Of course, character meets are subject to change, so be sure to check the Disney website before your vacation to get an idea of what Disney movie friends you can meet during your Magic Kingdom Park day.
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The Magic Kingdom has some great eats! The array of quick service, snacks, and deluxe dining opportunities is vast. Affordable and delicious hotdogs at Casey’s Corner are available right around the corner from The Crystal Palace where Guests can enjoy a buffet-style character dining experience.
Would you rather snag a hearty snack and a cool treat on your way to Jungle Cruise in Adventureland? Why not stop by the spring roll cart on the Adventureland bridge and Aloha Isle for a Dole Whip? Magic Kingdom restaurants range in price and time commitment level, but the dining opportunities in the Magic Kingdom are always delicious.
While the Magic Kingdom boasts a few thrill rides, the array of family rides makes it a great theme Park choice for families looking for tame thrills. I will admit that you won’t find any attractions as intense at the Magic Kingdom as Hollywood Studio’s Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster or Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Still, the family thrill rides in Magic Kingdom have consistently been a hit with my travel crew. Even older Guests and teenagers enjoy walking into the worlds of their favorite classic Disney movies. Disney World Magic Kingdom is the place to go for classic Disney feels.
When changes and updates happen in the Park, they are very carefully planned and timed. The most significant addition and expansion to the Magic Kingdom was the addition of New Fantasyland, which opened in 2012. Each attraction was designed and themed carefully to seamlessly fit into the Magic Kingdom we know and love.
Even Disney traditionalists in my family loved the expansion and ride additions because they were so carefully planned and perfectly placed. The attention to detail means that die-hard Park Guests can get excited about new additions knowing they will fit well into the culture of the Magic Kingdom without dishonoring the staple attractions that you know and love.
Disney Family Memories
For corny Disney fans like me, the family legacy and rich Disney history in the Magic Kingdom may be my favorite part of visiting. I love seeing photos of family vacations to the Magic Kingdom from the 1970s in my Dad’s photo album, knowing that I ran through the unchanged Cinderella Castle entrance as a little girl, a new bride on a honeymoon, and during many RunDisney Half Marathons.
I love the tradition of enjoying a turkey leg in the shade of Frontierland with my grandma or combatting exhaustion during extra magic hours with my family by my side. The memories families create in the Magic Kingdom, and the rich history and meaning of the attractions is the real treasure of the Magic Kingdom.
Sure, the rides and parades are great, but it’s all about the little details, significant memories, and unique magic that mean so much to me in the Magic Kingdom.