Friday, August 10, 2012

The Top 5 Must Dos for Magic Kingdom

This month, the Magical Blogorail Peach loop was asked to focus on the "Top 5 Must Dos for a Disney Newbie."  After sitting and brainstorming for a while, I decided that Disney newbies need quite a bit of general tips, so I focused on those for my last post. However, I wanted to share my must dos for all of the separate Parks in the World. Most everyone has shared must dos like Soarin', Toy Story Midway Mania, and other attractions, so I'm going to try to share some classics for newbies as well as things repeat guests might not have considered.

1. Fantasyland and Classic Attractions: Fantasyland, in my eyes, is the foundation of Magic Kingdom. It's the place where everyone can feel the full force of Disney magic and pixie dust, and adults can relish in being a kid again! Take the time to enjoy all, or at least most, of the Fantasyland attractions. First thing in the morning the lines tend to be short, so hurry to Fantasyland first. To enjoy the Land without it taking too long, my family has taken to this manner of touring: grab a Fast Pass for Peter Pan's Flight, get in line for Dumbo, ride it's a small world and Prince Charming Regal Carrousel, and go see Mickey's Philharmagic. By then your Fast Pass for Peter Pan's Flight should be ready to go. If not, enjoy the interactive queue for The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. A 30-45 minute wait isn't too much to endure when you can play along the way! (I took the time to fully play with this entire queue on my last trip, and I loved it!) Mad Tea Party can be ridden with a fairly short line by the time you're done with this area. Sadly, I cannot give advice on how to fit in the new Fantasyland Expansion, but I can't wait for November to experience it and share it with you!
Make sure you ride in an adjacent Dumbo to your group, so you can
take photos of each other! 
Along with Fantasyland, I recommend that you know your classics (in all of the parks). Since these attractions rarely change for more than a cleaning and update, their lines tend to be shorter, and they are great time fillers for when you're waiting for Fast Pass times to come up. The Haunted Mansion is right by Fantasyland, and with its new interactive queue, it's a blast to explore with the entire family! The "ride along" part at the end has been updated, and it's sure to entertain! Walt Disney himself envisioned parts of Tomorrowland like the Carousel of Progress and the Tomorrowland Transit Authority Peoplemover. Both classics are calm but must do's for me on every trip. Make sure you ride the Mountains (Space, Splash, and Big Thunder), so you can boast that you've conquered them all!

2. Wishes: The nighttime fireworks show at Magic Kingdom is my favorite by far. It has forever ruined non-Disney fireworks shows for me! Not only are the fireworks amazing, but the music that accompanies the show is poignant. My sister and I stand on Main Street, USA, singing along with the music, and I'm usually fighting back tears. Wishes is Disney magic at its finest; one might say the fireworks themselves are made of pixie dust!
It was so humid on a couple of my recent trips that the smoke
from the fireworks was crazy visible. It made for a unique show!

3. Parades: Disney parades, like everything else there, are phenomenal! The music blasts just loud enough to get your feet taping. You can't help but grin ear to ear, and children and adults find themselves waving joyfully to their favorite Disney characters. I got chills writing that, but seriously, that's just how wonderful the parades are! Magic Kingdom has two, really three, of my favorite parades: A Dream Come True in the afternoon and The Main Street Electrical Parade at night. Spectromagic is really my all time favorite parade, but Main Street Electrical Parade came back and took its place a few years ago.
How about some viewing tips? The best place my family has found to view the evening parades is in Liberty Square in front of the Hall of Presidents. We tend to have one more ride on The Haunted Mansion and then take a seat just behind the parade ropes about 45 minutes before the parade. Yes, the adults in our group sit on the ground too. We love the parade, and we like to have a good view and get to sit with the kids. We do NOT stand up once the parade starts as it allows those behind us to still get a good view if we stay seated. This spot lets us get wonderful photos, and we get the added bonus of interacting with the characters who are on foot. The afternoon parade is great, but it's a rough time for the kiddos, so we tend to fight for a spot on Main Street, USA and then head out for rest time quickly after the parade ends. We were one of the first groups to see the Dream Come True parade, and one of the dancers gave her streamers to my niece at the end of the parade. I still tear up thinking about that sweet moment.

4. Rope Drop: Some people like to sleep late and then stay out late with Extra Magic Hours in the evenings. My family rises very early. When asked for tips from a friend a while back, she returned from her trip and thanked me saying that Rope Drop was one of the most magical moments for her family! Rope Drop is a show that happens at Magic Kingdom just after you enter the ticket area. Get there at least a half an hour before Park opening, and stand watching for the train to enter. I'm not going to spoil the surprise for you, but it's worth getting up early one day to see it. This is yet another event at Magic Kingdom that makes me tear up. It's like the magic just overflows out of everything here!

5. Nighttime Attractions: Magic Kingdom is a beautiful sight to behold when it's all lit up at night, especially at Christmas. Some attractions are even better after dark has fallen as some give you a better view and others are simply "cooler" in the dark. The Jungle Cruise feels completely different at night, and the line tends to be a little shorter then. The Haunted Mansion queue is a bit creeper in the dark, and the interactive queue looks fabulous! I always insist on riding Astro Orbitor at night because of the spectacular view you get as you ride. The Tomorrowland Transit Authority Peoplemover also affords you great peeks of Cinderella Castle all lit up without people blocking your view. Have your camera ready though because the ride moves fast at times and your Castle shot is out of sight quickly!
Playing the organ in The Haunted Mansion queue after dark

What have I missed? Do you have some must dos for Magic Kingdom? Anything on the list that you as a returning guest have NOT done? 

Next Tuesday I'll be heading to the Experimental Prototype Community Of Tomorrow for five new must dos! See you then!

1 comment:

  1. I agree with every one of these! I too say experience atractions at night, especially the Jungle Cruise! It truly is a different experience!