Written by Amy Bechtol
Adventure, fantasy, the wild frontier; just a few words to describe the lands of the most magical place on Earth. Magic Kingdom Park has so much to discover! Rides, attractions, shows, parades, and fireworks, oh my! With so many choices, having a plan to make the most of your time is the way to go.
My favorite park is Magic Kingdom. My family ends up visiting it multiple times during our vacations. I realize that not everyone has the time to visit multiple days. Today, I am going to share with you some tips to efficiently tour in only one day.
- Get there early! It’s best to arrive at the gate about 30-45 minutes before the park is scheduled to open. The wait times at headliner attractions are among the lowest during the first two hours of operation and you’ll get to experience the Magic Kingdom Welcome Show to start your day off with a touch of pixie dust.
- Use the My Disney Experience app. This magical little tool gives you access to wait times for attractions, allows you to view and make changes to your FastPass+ selections and time, provides dining locations complete with menus, and so much more. Check it out!
- Make your FastPass+ selections for the afternoon hours. Aiming for experience times of 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., and 2:30 p.m. work well. This allows time for lunch prior to the first return time and after the prime time morning hours. I always try to make FastPass+ selections for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Peter Pan’s Flight, and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
- Visit headliners that you don’t have FastPass+ selections for early. Ride Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and Jungle Cruise during the first hour. Lines at these rides build quickly so it’s best to visit them first thing.
- Hit the high capacity rides in the second hour. Haunted Mansion, “it’s a small world”, and Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid are good options.
- Catch the Festival of Fantasy parade at 3:00 p.m. The porch in front of the Frontierland Shootin’ Arcade is a great viewing spot. A FastPass+ selection for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad for 2:30-3:30 is great to use immediately following the parade.
- Visit a FastPass+ kiosk as soon as your third FastPass+ selection has been used. Kiosks are currently located near the Diamond Horseshoe and Jungle Cruise in Adventureland, near Mickey’s Philharmagic in Fantasyland, and near Stitch’s Great Escape in Tomorrowland. You can get a 4th FastPass+ selection once the initial three are used. The same goes for a 5th, 6th, and so on. These additional FastPass+ selections are great to use for meeting characters like Mickey Mouse and TinkerBell at Town Square Theater.
- Spend the afternoon hours inside in the air conditioning. Attractions like Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor, Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress, Mickey’s PhilharMagic, The Hall of Presidents, Country Bear Jamboree, and Pirates of the Caribbean are all great options to get out of the sun and relax for a while.
- Enjoy the evening entertainment. Finding a comfortable spot and viewing the three nighttime shows is a great way to slow down and relax. Main Street Electrical Parade, Celebrate the Magic castle projection show, and Wishes nighttime spectacular fireworks display are sure to end your evening with a bang!
Experiencing Magic Kingdom Park is a must do on every Walt Disney World Resort vacation. Being prepared, pacing yourself, and packing your patience will help you soar through the park like Peter Pan. Following these tips will help make your visit practically perfect in every way!
Amy is a wife and mom of four kids, who loves all things Disney. She is a regular on the weekly episodes of the MouseQuest Podcast. Follow her on Twitter @uccats97.
Other posts by Amy:
Expedition Everest Challenge 2015: The Final Race
Friday the 13th Villains #DisneySide @Home Celebration
A Ten Mile Run Through the Twilight Zone
Running Disney: Packing Tips and Ideas