I often get asked about the Disney parks in Orlando when clients are booking vacations. Which rides are in which park? Where’s the best place to eat? Which park will my child enjoy the most? Where do I meet Elsa?
I hear you! So let’s go over each of Disney’s 4 parks and Disney Springs. We’ll talk Magic Kingdom here but if you’re looking for other parks, you can read about Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Disney Springs.
For those of you saying “but wait, Justine, where’s Harry Potter?” let’s clarify something. Harry Potter is not owned by Disney. Harry Potter is at the OTHER park *gasp* Universal Studios. But, good news, I CAN help you book a Universal vacation or add a day or two at Universal onto your Disney vacation! Not to worry, Harry Potter fans, we’ve still got you covered. You can read more about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter here.
Let’s talk Magic Kingdom!
Rides & Attractions
The classics are at Magic Kingdom. From The Jungle Cruise to Splash Mountain, there’s something for everyone in the family, and I bet most of the rides you think of when you think of Disney World are here. I’ve made a full list, just for you. Rides with a * after the name are available for fast pass selection, meaning you can skip most of the line! For more on fast passes, check out my article here. You can find height requirements for rides here.
- Astro Orbiter
- The Barnstormer*
- Big Thunder Mountain*
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin*
- Casey Jr. Splash ‘N’ Soak
- Country Bear Jamboree
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant*
- Enchanted Tales with Belle*
- Frontierland Shootin’ Arcade
- The Hall of Presidents
- Haunted Mansion*
- It’s a Small World*
- Jungle Cruise*
- Liberty Square Riverboat
- Mad Tea Party*
- The Magic Carpets of Aladdin*
- Main Street Vehicles
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh*
- Mickey’s PhilharMagic*
- Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor
- Peter Pan’s Flight*
- Pirates of The Caribbean*
- Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train*
- Space Mountain*
- Splash Mountain*
- Stitch’s Great Escape
- Swiss Family Treehouse
- Tomorrowland Speedway*
- Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
- Tom Sawyer Island
- Under the Sea- Journey of the Little Mermaid*
- Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress
- Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
- Walt Disney World Railroad
My must do rides and attractions include Enchanted Tales with Belle, Haunted Mansion, Jungle Cruise, Mickey’s PhilharMagic, Pirates of the Caribbean, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, The PeopleMover and Carousel of Progress!
Fireworks & Nighttime Shows
Happily Ever After is the current Magic Kingdom nighttime show and fireworks display. It happens just as the park is getting read to close, in front of Cinderella’s Castle. It is 18 minutes long, full of spectacular fire works and magical music. It’s the best way to end a fun filled day in Magic Kingdom!
Places to Eat
There are some really great food options in Magic Kingdom. Keep in mind that if you have a dining plan, your table service credits work for character dining experiences! I talk more about character dining here. Not sure what the dining plan is? Read more about the dining plan options here!
- The Diamond Horseshoe- Table Service
- Aloha Isle- Quick Service
- Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies- Quick Service
- Be Our Guest Restaurant- Table Service (requires 2 credits for dinner)- Beast from Beauty and the Beast is at dinner
- Casey’s Corner- Quick Service
- Cheshire Cafe- Quick Service
- Cinderella’s Royal Table- Table Service (requires 2 credits)- a number of princesses including Cinderella, Belle, Aurora, Ariel, Snow White, Jasmine and Rapunzel are at breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Columbia Harbour House- Quick Service
- Cool Ship- Quick Service
- Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe- Quick Service
- The Crystal Palace- Table Service- Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Piglet and Eeyore are at breakfast, lunch and dinner
- The Friar’s Nook- Quick Service
- Gaston’s Tavern- Quick Service
- Golden Oak Outpost- Quick Service
- Jungle Navigation Co. LTD Skipper Canteen- Table Service
- Liberty Square Market- Quick Service
- Liberty Tree Tavern- Table Service
- The Lunching Pad- Quick Service
- Main Street Bakery- Quick Service
- Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn & Cafe- Quick Service
- Pinocchio Village Haus- Quick Service
- Plaza Ice Cream Parlor- Quick Service
- The Plaza Restaurant- Table Service
- Prince Eric’s Village Market- Quick Service
- Sleepy Hollow- Quick Service
- Storybook Treats- Quick Service
- Sunshine Tree Terrace- Quick Service
- Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant- Quick Service
- Tony’s Town Square Restaurant- Table Service
- Tortuga Tavern- Quick Service
- Westward Ho- Quick Service
My favorite places to eat are Gaston’s Tavern for a giant cinnamon bun, Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn for lunch, and The Crystal Palace for dinner with Winnie the Pooh & Friends.
Character Meet & Greets
There are so many great characters to meet in Magic Kingdom. Some are at dining experiences (which I talk more about here), but these characters are at specific spots throughout the park during specific hours. You can check the day’s schedule at Town Hall or ask any cast member for times and spots! Here’s where you can find most of the characters that are in Magic Kingdom.
- Alice in Wonderland at the Mad Tea Party attraction
- Buzz Lightyear at Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin attraction
- Ariel at her grotto in Fantasyland
- Aladdin & Jasmine at The Magic Carpets of Aladdin attraction
- Mickey, Minnie, Daisy, Donald and more at Pete’s Silly Side Show
- Gaston at Gaston’s Tavern
- Merida at the Fairytale Garden in Fantasyland
- Mickey & Minnie Mouse at Town Square Theater
- Peter Pan at Peter Pan’s Flight attraction
- Rapunzel at Princess Fairytale Hall
- Tiana at Fairytale Hall
- Tinker Bell at Town Square Theater
- Winnie the Pooh & Tigger at The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh attraction
I love meeting Ariel in her grotto and Merida in the Garden! Peter Pan is often getting into mischief. Tiana and Rapunzel often meet with other friends at Princess Fairytale Hall, like Elena and Cinderella.
Magic Kingdom Area Resorts
Looking to stay close to the action at Magic Kingdom? Maybe you’ll be spending the most time at this park or maybe you just love riding the monorail. No matter the reason, Magic Kingdom Area Resorts are some of the best (and most expensive)! These are all Deluxe Resorts and Deluxe Villas. You can read more about the different resort tiers here.
- Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
- The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
- Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.
- Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
- Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
- Disney Polynesian Resort Village
- Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
There’s a great character meal at the Contemporary, Chef Mickey’s. The campsites are the least expensive way to stay on Disney property, and you can tent camp or park an RV!
That’s all the important things for Magic Kingdom! Are you ready to book your next Disney vacation? You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out a vacation quote request here!