The question I’m most asked when it comes to Disney World is how to get it all done at Magic Kingdom.
I’d like to say we do it all because we spend at least two days in the park, but truth be told, we get it all done on that first day. Additional days are just icing on the cake, not because we are missing anything.
The only tip you really need is to be flexible.
We don’t come up with a strategy, or touring plan. We simply keep an eye on wait times and remain flexible throughout the day.
But also know when to go! Ideally, September is the best time! But most importantly, going to the Magic Kingdom over a weekend is almost never a good idea. However, weekends are also one of the best times to go because the park is often open until, like, 2am with extra magic hours. It’s FUN to be there that late, because hardly anyone is around. Especially a weekend in September!
If you have one day here then definitely choose a weekday. If you have a few days to spare choose a weekday to focus on doing it all, and then a weekend day for some late night fun!
That first day for us at Magic Kingdom? It’s ON. So we usually pick a weekday in which the park is still open pretty late. Usually that ends up being around 11pm, give or take, and we don’t pay attention to the extra magic hours. Like I’ve said before, rope drop isn’t in our vocab. As much as I’d love to see the opening show, I just can’t wake up that early. So we typically end up walking through the gate around 10/10:30 am.
Entering The Park
First things first: Main Street. The first round of castle pictures. Also shopping, at least to get my princess crown for the day.
Where To First?
EVERY SINGLE TIME thus far, we’ve hit Tomorrowland first. This trip, I wanted to change things up a bit, so we went to Adventureland!!! The excitement! I was curious to see if we change our route if we could still do it all in a day, and the answer is YES.
I have to admit, it was a really wise choice. We practically walked on Jungle Cruise.
We have our routine when it comes to Tomorrowland, and since we broke that we were sort of all over the place. I thought I would HATE it – not really having a plan – but surprisingly, it didn’t bother me in the least.
Pirates Of The Caribbean was closed for refurbishment, which we knew about in advance. I was SO ANXIOUS AND EXCITED to get on Splash Mountain that we immediately headed there next.
I couldn’t even think about anything else until we went on this ride. The wait was rather long (for the day) at 25 minutes, but it ended up being more like 15. We did Splash Mountain last year in Disneyland, but haven’t been on Disney World’s version in FOREVER. Since I was a child to be exact. We ALWAYS seem to visit when it’s closed for refurbishment, so this was a BIG deal!
It did NOT disappoint. Definitely still my favorite ride.
We didn’t have any breakfast, and were hungry, so next we grabbed a snack.
We still had time before our first fast pass of the day (Thunder Mountain), so we took a quick walk to The Haunted Mansion. There was no wait, so we let a ton of people on before us so I could finish my ice cream.
We STILL had time before our Thunder Mountain fast pass, so we took some pictures.
Then I noticed Space Mountain was at a five minute wait, so we ran there real quick (it was up to 10 minutes by the time we got there – still not bad)!
After that we headed back to Thunder Mountain.
See what I mean by all over the place? Nevertheless, I’d rather be all over the place than wait on crazy long lines, so it worked.
So next we headed to Fantasyland to shop at my favorite Beauty & The Beast store, and to try and meet Gaston.
Oh my goodness did we have such a horrible experience trying to meet him! So the first time we went, the line was already closed. Bummer. The cast member said to come back in 30 minutes, but we wanted to ensure we got on the next line, so we walked on The Little Mermaid ride quickly and then headed right back to Gaston.
We got back just as people were getting in the new line, so we got on too. The same cast member was there, moving people up so we didn’t block the bathrooms. We were last on line before they closed it, but made it! Yay! So the cast member got to the group in front of us and asked how many people. They were 8 (!!!). Then, he turned to us and flat out said the line was closed. Despite the fact that we were already on it, and had been for a good five minutes now. We were SHOCKED. Plus, we are ONLY two people, and there was no one else behind us! I really thought he was kidding at first, because it was so crazy! I mean, he really couldn’t just let us stay? Really?! We came back early enough, and um, we were already on line! The party of 8 in front of us was shocked too. One of the super sweet ladies said, “Well they can just be part of our family!” I mean… so super sweet!!! But the cast member? He flat out said NO. The lady then felt so bad (and was upset by the cast member’s attitude!) that she said, “Well, two of us don’t really want to meet him, so if we get off can they just take our spot?” Another NO. I swear, we clearly have personally wronged this man in some other life. What. The. Hell. So, needless to say, we did not meet Gaston, nor did we go back and try again. We were just DONE. Instead, we headed to meet Ariel (the one with a fin).
While in line we got a text from my brother and his girlfriend that they were finally here, so after meeting Ariel, we headed to Pinocchio Haus to meet up for lunch.
After Lunch? Another Round Of Castle Pictures
I mean, it’s a thing, okay?
My brother’s girlfriend wanted to get a princess crown too, so after lunch they headed to Main Street while we set off for Tomorrowland. We decided to meet at Buzz Lightyear.
Even though we already went on Space Mountain, my brother’s girlfriend didn’t, and we could always go again. So after Buzz Lightyear we headed to Space Mountain, since the wait said 20 minutes (it was more like 15).
When we got off, the line said 15 minutes (it was more like 10), so we hopped right back on! We LOVED riding the two semi different tracks back to back!
Once back outside, we were sweating our butts off, so we went on Tomorrowland Transit and got some ice cream before going on Carousel Of Progress, because we needed a break! Best relaxation move ever!
My brother and his girlfriend were actually supposed to be at Thunder Mountain with us earlier, but they were late and missed their fast pass time. My brother’s girlfriend REALLY wanted to ride, so we headed back that way and waited on the 15 minute line! I’ll take it!
Fantasyland! Gosh, I love the shops here, especially the new(ish) big circus tent!
I may have also gotten a cake pop while here.
After that, we did all the adorable Fantasyland things – Dumbo, Barnstormer, the Carousel, Merlin’s sword, PhilharMagic, and the stores near Cinderella’s Castle. RANT: These used to be some of my favorite shops and now it’s all Frozen stuff – ugh! Here are our super cheesy Merlin’s sword pictures!!!
My brother and his girlfriend booked their trip last minute, so they couldn’t get their Seven Dwarves Mine Train fast passes until this evening. We booked pretty far in advance, so we got ours for earlier in the day. So they went off and did Haunted Mansion/Jungle Cruise/Little Mermaid/some of the other rides we went on earlier in the day, while we went on the mine train for the first time ever!
IT. WAS. AWESOME.
We got on really quickly with our fast pass, which is good, but I’m so bummed we missed seeing the actual line. I heard it’s done really well!
Anyway, my brother and his girlfriend were still on the other rides, so we checked out Enchanted Tales With Belle, which we’ve never done before!
Then we all met up at It’s A Small World.
Next, it was time for our third fast pass of the day – Peter Pan! Definitely a favorite!
After that, my brother and his girlfriend didn’t get a chance to do The Little Mermaid, and since we already did, we went on Winnie The Pooh.
While Mr. ADOL waited on line, I ran and got a 4th Fast Pass for Splash Mountain (I’m obsessed)! There were a TON of fast passes still available this late in the day (it was now after 7pm).
I quickly paused to take pictures of the back of the castle.
We all met up again for dinner at Be Our Guest, which you can read about here.
After dinner we rushed to watch Wishes. Honestly, this is one of the things we planned on catching over the weekend, so we didn’t care if we missed it. Plus, we already saw it from the rooftop at California Grill the other day (read about it here). But, we were close enough to the castle, and we had time, and, well, I can’t pass it up!
After Wishes, Mr. ADOL didn’t want to go on Splash Mountain again and risk getting soaked, and my brother didn’t want to ride Mine Train, so the guys went off to Haunted Mansion, Jungle Cruise, etc, while my brother’s girlfriend and I did Mine Train, Splash Mountain (x2), and Thunder Mountain!
We were literally the last car on Thunder Mountain! The guys were at the exit waiting for us, since by now the park was closed. We were SO bummed to be leaving, but luckily we have another day here planned in a few days!
As we were making our way to the exit, we saw the ropes for the Electric Parade. We figured it already happened while we were on rides, but then… the music started!!! LUCKY, LUCKY US!
Best day ever!
Magic Kingdom Day 2
By the time we had our second day at Magic Kingdom we were no longer staying on Disney property. We were at the Marriott World Center Resort & Spa. We ended up having an awesome dinner (which caused us to arrive at the park later than we anticipated). We still managed to catch the tale end of Wishes.
Honestly, we didn’t know how much we could pack in from now until 2am, but we were desperate to try!
So when you buy a certain amount of days at Disney World, adding another day ends up being something like $20 more, so it’s silly not to. I would pay $20 for an extra hour at Magic Kingdom, and we still had 5-6 to spare. We missed our first Fast Pass, but made it just in time for our second at Space Mountain.
We immediately went on Space Mountain a second time because there was no line, which already made tonight a hit in itself.
Next, we used our third Fast Pass on Seven Dwarves Mine Train (we determined it’s better in the dark). I don’t know what it is about this ride, but we were almost always in the very front. Seriously, 2 out of the 3 times I rode I was in the very first car. So weird!
Next, since we used all three Fast Passes, we were able to go to the kiosk and get a 4th.
We used it for Splash Mountain.
By now, it was around midnight, and the park was closed to non-Disney resort guests. What’s awesome about this is while we were already checked in at the Marriott World Center Resort & Spa, we technically checked out of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort this morning, so that made us still “guests” of the Disney resort. Therefore, we were able to utilize the Extra Magic Hours. All they ask is to see one Magic Band. My brother and his girlfriend never stayed on Disney property, only we did. Also, we had friends with us who are from Orlando, so we were sort of the king and queen that night. We always utilized one of our magic bands whenever someone asked, and then we were ALL good to go!
So next we did Thunder, followed by Splash Mountain again 4 more times. Rides were literally WALK ON.
We hit Haunted Mansion on our way to Fantasyland.
One of the things we spotted was the Anna and Elsa meet and greet, which up until now seriously did not dip below 90 minutes any day we were here. It was listed as five minutes. None of us really love Frozen (in fact most of us don’t even like it), but just because the wait was so crazy, we thought why not.
I honestly didn’t think we would make it until 2am, and while I don’t know how, we did.
We ended up not even going on that many rides after Anna & Elsa. We kind of just walked around and enjoyed a near-empty park, because it’s so rare.
We hung out by the castle, and leisurely shopped at the stores on Main Street.
Gosh, Magic Kingdom, I just love you so much!