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Walt Disney World Florida 

Disney World Magic Kingdom

The Walt Disney Magic Kingdom is what most people think about when they think "Disney". It's usually the first theme park they visit when on a vacation in Orlando.

The Disney Magic Kingdom was opened in 1971, to great fanfare. It's what put Orlando on the map. It was a fantastic accomplishment, a place of wonder and awe.

You know something? It still is.

I've mentioned before that I used to work at Disney, and the Magic Kingdom is where I worked. I have to say that in many ways it's still the best of the four Disney theme parks, even after 30-something years. The parades and fireworks are the absolute best, the attractions and shows much-loved by visitors of all ages.  It's only gotten better with age.

Come on and let's explore the Disney Magic Kingdom -- the park for the young and the young at heart.

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The Magic Kingdom "Lands"

The Disney World Magic Kingdom theme park is divided into several themed areas, called "Lands".  All the shows, rides, shops -- everything -- in that land shares that theme.  So you wouldn't seeing early 20th century costumes (like from Main Street) on staff members in, say, Tomorrowland.

    • Main Street USA
    • Adventureland
    • Frontierland
    • Liberty Square
    • Fantasyland
    • Mickey's Toontown Fair
    • Tomorrowland

Here are some Magic Kingdom attractions in each of the "Lands". Naturally there are many, many more attractions -- these are just some of the best ones!

Main Street USA is best known for the parades. There aren't and real attractions except for the train. But the parades are a must must see! 

Otherwise, Main Street is mostly shops except for the Walt Disney World Railroad -- definitely worth a ride.  Most people miss it because they walk under it to get into the Magic Kingdom!

Adventureland is full of all kinds of tropical (and not so tropical sometimes) adventures. Although it was popular before the movie version came out, Pirates of the Caribbean became even more popular after!  You'll find Pirates here (argh!), as well as:

  • Jungle Cruise
  • The Enchanted Tiki Room

Frontierland is lots of fun with a bit of an old west flair.  You can enjoy a down-home, foot-stomping, roof-raising show here, as well as doing some screaming at a certain railroad.  Some of the fun attractions in Frontierland include:

  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Country Bear Jamboree
  • Splash Mountain

Liberty Square is a little more reserved in its attractions...or is it? It's a curious mixture of Americana, along with some, er, spirited inhabitants!  Two of the most popular attractions in Liberty Square are:

  • The Haunted Mansion
  • Hall of Presidents

Fantasyland is a dream come true for kids of all ages! This is the land that has simultaneously changed the most and the least. At its heart are the Disney icons -- Snow White, Dumbo, Peter Pan.  But there have been new residents arriving, like Ariel, Belle and Pooh.  It's a mixture of old and new.  So, what's special to see in Fantasyland?  How about:

  • Ariel's Grotto
  • It's a Small World (even if the tune keeps running through your head for the rest of the day...)

Mickey's Toontown Fair is the newest of the Magic Kingdom lands.  It kind of sits in a corner, with Fanstasyland on one side and Tomorrowland on the other.  But don't bypass it, because it is worth a look.  Granted, it's geared towards children, but aren't we all kids at heart anyway?  So, two places to visit in Toontown are:

  • Mickey's Country House
  • Toontown Hall of Fame

Tomorrowland has some wild (and not so wild) attractions.  It used to be that Tomorrowland was a vision of the future.  These days it's a little less of that, and a little more fun. Favorites in this land include:

  • Space Mountain
  • Walt Disney's Carousel of Progress
  • Stitch's Great Escape

Places to Eat in Disney World Magic Kingdom

Cinderella, at Character DiningYes, there are plenty of places to grab a bit in Walt Disney World. From ice cream carts to burgers and fries to buffets to sit down dinners, the Magic Kingdom has it all. By the different lands, here's what you can expect:

Main Street USA has the biggest selection. Choose from:

  • Tony's Town Square
  • Main Street Bakery
  • The Plaza Restaurant
  • Casey's Corner
  • The Crystal Palace

Adventureland has very themed food...think South of the Border!

  • El Piarata Y El Perico

Frontierland has a western-y place to grab a quick bite (and don't forget the root beer floats):

  • Pecos Bill Cafe

Liberty Square has more sit-down-style restaurants, including:

  • Liberty Tree Tavern -- I highly recommend taking advantage of the character dining here -- it is fun for everyone!
  • Columbia Harbour House

Fantasyland has the most famous dining table of all (evil stepsisters not invited):

  • The Pinocchio VIllage Haus
  • Cinderella's Royal Table

Mickey's Toontown Fair doesn't have anywhere to eat, per se, but watch out for the popcorn and ice cream vendors!

Tomorrowland has what I think is the most unique offerings (noodles anyone?):

  • Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe
  • Tomorrowland Terrace Noodle Station

Disney World Magic Kingdom Special Tours

The Magic Kingdom certainly doesn't skimp on its tour offerings! And I think they are cool!

    • Magic Behind the Steam Trains (you get into the park early for this one) and you must be at least 10 years old.

    • Keys to the Kingdom includes backstage areas. No cameras or large bags on this one, and you have to be at least 16 years old.

    • Family Magic is fun for all ages! Three years of age and up.

    • Mickey's Magical Milestones traces the path of the world's most famous mouse! Ten years of age and up.

    • VIP is totally built around you! You'll discuss with the VIP team what you want to do and when, then leave them to do their magic.

     

Magic Kingdom Parades and Fireworks

The Magic Kingdom has the best parades and fireworks in all the theme parks, hands down! Here are the big three that you don't want to miss:

    • Share a Dream Come True: This is a fun parade that starts on Main Street and ends up in Frontierland. Full of Disney characters and all kinds of entertainment!

    • Spectromagic: If you have been to Disney in the past, this is the equivalent of the old Electric Light Parade, only revamped and better than ever! It is a definite "must see", and starts at Cinderella's castle.

      Disney Wishes: Think of every night as being the 4th of July with a glorious show of fireworks. No matter how many times I see them, I still marvel at the wonderful show.

Check out the list of parade and fireworks times.

 

Disney World Magic Kingdom Entertainment

If you still have time on your hands (unlikely) or you'd like a place to sit down, catch your breath and enjoy a show, here are some options :

    • Galaxy Palace Theater (Tomorrowland)
    • Cinderellabration (Fantasyland)

If you want to meet and greet some characters, here's where to go:

    • Ariel's Grotto (Fantasyland)
    • Judge's Tent (Mickey's Toontown Fair)
    • Storytime With Belle (Fantasyland)
    • Toontown Hall of Fame (Mickey's Toontown Fair)

 

Don't Forget...

To help keep you comfortable on your Disney World Magic Kingdom trip, please remember to bring sunglasses, sunscreen (or wear a long-sleeved shirt) and perhaps a hat of some sort. The Florida sun is pretty strong, especially in the summer. Of course if you forget anything there are plenty of places to shop in the Magic Kingdom (hint, hint).

Keep drinking fluids -- by the time you get thirsty, you're already a little dehydrated.

Book ahead! Walt Disney World is a popular place, and to get the best deals on tickets and resorts, make reservations and get tickets as far in advance as possible.

To forget about the rest of the world for awhile! Enjoy your wonderful time at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom.

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Have a Great Disney Vacation!

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The Magic Kingdom Has the Best...

...parades and fireworks! The Disney Wishes evening fireworks display is wondrous and magical. Set off by Tinker Bell, of course!

The Spectromagic parade is held in the evenings, and think of it as fireworks and Christmas lights rolled into an eye-dazzling parade.

Unfortunately, Spectromagic isn't held every night, so if you want to see it, check the parade times.



Save Money at Disney!

You can save bundles of cash on your next Disney World vacation! (And saving money is good, right?) Check out the Ultimate Savings Guide!

 

 

 



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