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Walt Disney World Family Vacation: Magic Kingdom Top 10 Favorites

Whenever I used to think about Walt Disney World, the Magic Kingdom immediately came to mind. I didn’t know to separate all the parks as part of the package, I thought of the big castle, Mickey, and Minnie. For those familiar with Disneyland, the Magic Kingdom is pretty much the same thing…with some extra features. On our 5 day trip, we spent 1.5 days at the Magic Kingdom, just because there were a few things we wanted to do that we didn’t get to the first day. One might say, it’s the most…Magical of all the parks.

{If you missed my original post, this is a segment of a 5 part series all about Walt Disney World, see the first post by clicking on the link}

Magic Kingdom Top Ten Favorites


I like maps–a lot, so before I share my top ten list, I’m going to share a map of the park:

magic kingdom map

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It may seem overwhelming, but off of Main Street, it is broken up into 4 main parts. Clockwise: Adventureland, Frontierland, Fantasyland, and Tomorrowland. I kept hearing from people about the NEW Fantasyland, as it has added a bunch of new attractions with The Little Mermaid, Beauty & the Beast, and almost done with a Snow White attraction.

Lets get to it, my top ten MUST SEE attractions at Magic Kingdom

1. Dream Along with Mickey–This 20 minute show in front of the Castle happens about 5 times throughout the day. I hadn’t heard about it from anyone, not on my list, and I just happened to catch the tail end of the second to last show. I knew I had to get my girls to come with me for the final show. My main reason was because the princes were there! My youngest kept asking where the princesses princes were, and I assumed they weren’t at the park, but they were dancing in this show with their princesses. That’s what drew me in, but this singing, dancing, and Mickey speaking show was SO much fun! My daughter still chants, “Dreams. Come. True.” as Mickey asked the crowd to, one of my favorite attractions of the day! (see my first picture above).

2. Town Square Theater Character Meeting–Another little tip I didn’t know about, but a friend of mind texted it to me the day before we went. Just inside the park entrance, turn RIGHT and head to the Town Square Theater. Inside, you can stand in one line to meet Mickey and stand in another line to meet THREE Princesses (Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, & Rapunzel). We went to meet Mickey right when we got to the park at 8am and there was NO wait. The princess line was already pretty long (poor Mickey getting overlooked).  We got a great group picture with Mickey, and I even got some individuals with my kids. Gotta love this group of 13 squeezing in with Mickey! He was so great and (silently) friendly!Mickey Mouse Meeting

Mickey hug

Though I took the girls the next day to visit the Princesses with a FAST PASS, I’ll include a few pics here since it is the same attraction. If I had known about this princess option, I might not have done the Character Lunch at Epcot (I’ll tell you more tomorrow) but still glad we did both. After 3 days of touring around, I told a lady in line that we’d  hoped to see Rapunzel, and she told me we could see her here—I was SO excited, and she was SO sweet. Really, all of the princesses were great and interested and sweet with me AND my girls. It must get tired to keep that smile plastered all day.

Princesses at the Magic Kingdom

My 7 year old daughter wasn’t as into it as the 3.5  year old was…somewhat skeptical, but still had fun with it.

princess greeting

3. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad–This is a classic ride, and we decided the longest time for on a roller coaster the whole week. It’s a bit bumpy, but fun for all ages. This was pretty much a favorite for my 3 oldest kids, and they went several times. Though my youngest (nearly 4 year old) was tall enough, she wasn’t interested in the ride. We saw, but didn’t take pictures with Woody & Jesse from Toy Story near this ride in Frontierland.

Thunder Mountain

4. Be Our Gust Restaurant (Beasts Castle)–This is a restaurant, but in my opinion an attraction in and of itself. It’s new to the park (sandwiched in between Gaston’s Tavern and Enchanted Tales with Belle that we never saw but heard was great).  You must have reservations for dinner, but it’s open for all for lunch. We got in line at around 11 and had to wait in the outdoor line for about 25 minutes before we got inside to order. The menu was short (not good for my picky eaters kids) but it was as if we were in the castle the entire time we stepped inside the door, even the wilting ROSE in one wing. I left my “big camera” in the stroller, but grabbed this image online. (better pictures here and more scenes with food pictures here)

Be Our Guest Restaurant Image

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5. Main Street Electrical (night) Parade–This is the only time we stayed late at a park for the evening festivities. The electrical parade sounded fun, though it started at 9pm, and we got to the park early that day at 8am. I loved how it was different in the evening (we saw several parade’s during the day at different parks).

Disney's Electrical Night Parade

After the night parade is a very cool projector show called WISHES where different scenes are projected onto the Castle (as if it is a movie screen) which changes the look of the castle. It shows early images of Walt Disney, with a firework even after. It’s a 3 part show in the evening.

6. Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom–My son’s teacher told us about this hidden adventure at the park. Upon entering the park, turn LEFT to go to the Fire station to collect your free pack of FREE sorcerer cards (one pack per park ticket per day). It was a fun adventure to “capture” the bad guys all throughout the park. I thought this was SUCH a fun idea, and my boys LOVED it, but only if you go to the park a second day, or have been before and not as rushed to go on rides for the first time. It is time consuming, as you jump from one secret location to another, but it was frustrating when the boys wanted to follow the game, and we were trying to fit in rides. The second day we went back, my husband took them around for a good 3-4 hours just for the game. (more info here)

Sorcerers  of the Magic Kingdom

7. Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor–This was a comedy show in a theater. Cameras are planted around the room and the Monster characters on the screen are “talking” to the audience and addressing certain people. Jokes can be texted in and possibly used in the show. My kids thought it was pretty funny, and I may have laughed a bit myself.

8. Peter Pan’s Flight–This was a classic ride I wasn’t sure I needed in my day, but it was very cute, and we rode in a flying pirates ship. Great for kids of all ages.

9. Space Mountain–Though it was a bit too jerky for me, and dizzying for my husband, it was a favorite among the kids, and a classic as well. A dark, indoor roller coaster.

10. Splash Mountain–Sadly, this ride was closed while we were there, but I know my kids and I love it from Disneyland, and it would have been on my top 10 if it were open. Watch out–you’ll get wet!

A few other favorites that didn’t quite make the top 10: Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin (though I thought the Toy Story ride was better at Hollywood Studios), Swiss Family Robinson’s Treehouse, and the Jungle Cruise. My husband also enjoyed Tom Sawyer’s Island, though the kids didn’t like it as much as they did a similar attraction at another park. My mom loves It’s a Small World, Dumbo was cute, The Little Mermaid ride I got to sing, and many love the Pirates of the Caribbean. My boys were not impressed with the Haunted Mansion.

Other Magic Kingdom Highlights:

We had a princess sighting from afar with Tiana and Merida–they have certain hidden spots they are stationed, and you can wait in a line anytime during the day to snap a picture with them. Thankfully, my girls were ok with a picture from a distance.

Tiana and Merida

We also spotted Cinderella’s Wicked Step Mother and Step Sisters roaming the park “bickering” at each other

Cinderellas Step Mother

My favorite food was the waffle sandwiches in Sleepy Hollow in Liberty Square. Waffles with nutella and fruit inside were so delicious (there was also a chicken waffle sandwich and funnel cakes there). Pastries and a sweet frozen drink (frozen apple juice, a hint of toasted marshmallow and  topped with passion fruit-mango foam) in Gaston’s Tavern were delish, too.

magic kingdom food

Minnie’s Sweet Shop was fun to browse in (eye and mouth candy). Though I didn’t get a giant “chocolate dipped rice krispie treat” as seen below, I did get several smaller ones…and brought some home.

Minnie's Sweet Shop Treat Minnie's Sweet Shop

I couldn’t pass a chance to get a frozen fruit bar, reminiscent of my childhood trip to Walt Disney World. The pineapple was delish.

Disney Pineapple Fruit Bar

Allow me to share a few more pictures, favorite family shots of the 2 days at Magic Kingdom:

sleepy mickey

Grandpa and Little

lines at Disney World

driving cars

sleeping

 

Treehouse Smile

Dancing at Walt Disney World with girls

 

sibling love sorcerer cards watching parade

Silly Family Faces

Cinderellas Castle

Have you been to the Magic Kingdom before? Is one of my top 10 your favorites? Didn’t make the list? I’d love to hear in the comments!!

{Not compensated for this post at all. If you missed my original post, this is a segment of a 5 part series all about Walt Disney World, see the first post by clicking on the link, in this parenthesis}

Kristen Duke

Kristen Duke

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Kristen Duke
Kristen Duke
Kristen Duke
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Comments

  1. How fun! :)
    Magic Kingdom is my favorite Disney park (I don’t really care for epcot, lol) and as you said, it´s the most magical one. The first thing we did on our trip was see Mickey at Town Square… also pretty much no lines in the morning. Universal is my favorite for roller coasters, but the ones here are fun :)

    When we went the new Fantasyland was being built and I told the hubbie we had to go back when it was done… I’m very happy he agreed :D
    Aline recently posted..4th month recap {Pregnancy}My Profile

    • Kristen Duke says:

      Ha! I’m writing my Epcot post now, and just said some love it, some don’t! I think it’s ALMOST done (new Fantasyland), so you can take your little one!

  2. We took our kids to Disney World for Christmas last year and had a blast. I would agree that the waffles with nuttella and fruit are awesome! I’m super bummed that I never took a picture of ours. Any chance you would be willing to share? I think it would makea addition to the kids scrapbooks. Thanks!

    • Kristen Duke says:

      of course! you can save it from this post, or email me and I’ll send it to you;) Disney at Christmastime sounds fun!!

  3. These pictures are so fun! Question for you – when you take your camera into the park with the family…what lens are you taking along and shooting with? I love taking thebig camera but it can become heavy and a bit of a burden…just curious what you used.

    • Kristen Duke says:

      I like my prime 35mm because I can get all of the tall buildings easily. Link in my Amazon store on my sidebar to look at specs.

  4. aw love the little boy in his matching footed sleeper and your girl sleeping with Grandma in the wheel chair. I LOVED space mountain as a kid! Thanks for mentioning how your 7 year old wasn’t that impressed with meeting the princesses – reminds me to cherish how my daughter is so in love with them now and the phase will pass.
    Mindy recently posted..Sweet SurprisesMy Profile

    • Kristen Duke says:

      Yeah, it is sad to see a bit of the magic fade…but it was alive and kickin’ in my youngest!! That shall fade, too, someday…

  5. Such amazing memories that you captured!!
    Dee recently posted..Got Giveaways? 3/26 Giveaway LinkyMy Profile

  6. Love the pic of C passed out in your mom’s lap in the wheelchair! Classic! ;o)

    • Kristen Duke says:

      ha! yeah…she fell asleep 2 out of the 5 days, she was an amazing trooper! she doesn’t take naps anymore, but the fun wore her out! that wheelchair came in handy in a few ways!

  7. We went to Disney World for the first time ever last year. I was in HEAVEN – I absolutely loved it & would love to go back some day. I have boys, so we didn’t do any princess stuff – but they did love all the rides at every park. We also went to Universal – oh was that fun! I look forward to reading more about your favorite things at the other parks.
    Michelle recently posted..My very fabulous cameraMy Profile

  8. We have been to Disney twice and most of our favorites were on your list…although you had a few I had never heard of. The Electric Parade at night is always a favorite of mine!!! Love all your fun pictures…and I love the fun matching Mickey shirts!!!
    Jocelyn @BruCrew Life recently posted..Blueberry Banana BreadMy Profile

  9. So happy to have found your site. I was searching Disney on Pinterest and found some of your amazing pics. You truly have a gift. This summer will be our 6th summer trip to WDW, we are hooked. We became Vaction Club Members about 3 years ago. Do you have any ‘traditions’ when you go? We always make our first stop in MK the Confectionary. The sweet smell gets us moving (and the sugar, too). Although Mrs.Potts in Fantasyland offers some of the biggest treats for your dollar, or dining plan point. EPCOT has to be our fave. Hubby and I like to sample the vino in every country. Well, can’t wait to see more pics and hear more stories. Great work!

    • Kristen Duke says:

      Hi Kelli! Glad you found me! It was actually our very FIRST family trip, so you have lots more experience than me! I’ve got 5 other posts on our week there, I hope you got a chance to see all of them!

  10. Nichole says:

    We went to Disney world for our first time I’m December and we LOVED it. The one thing my 6 year old daughter loved doing is pin trading :) she has a huge collection of them. Magic kingdom was our favorite park but our favorite ride was the rockin roller coaster at Hollywood. Thanks for sharing your experience!

  11. Please tell me more about how to see the princesses as seen in your pic with rapunzel and aurora.

  12. My last trip I left my big camera at home becasue I HATE lugging it around the park, in the heat while hearding the 2 kids, and worrying it may get broken. I regret it dearly though. :-( I love the look of your photos!!!

    What lenses did you use most? If I were only bringing one with me, which one do you think i shoudl take?…

    • Kristen Duke says:

      It is quite a difficult call on whether or not it is worth it to lug around the camera. I went to Paris a few years ago and left my nice camera home, and years later, I still wish I didn’t!!! SOOOO, maybe next time? The memories were captured, for me, and for you on your trip, we learned from it, right? I have started taking my 35mm as my main travel lens. I have a 28-75, but the glass isn’t that great, my 35 is sharp and I love it. It can catch wide angles and close ups great. Hope that helps!

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