Magic Kingdom is the most popular park at Walt Disney World. In this post, I'll show you how to have the best morining and knock out a significant portion of the park all before lunch!
First and foremost, book your Fastpass+ reservations! If you're staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel. You can do this 60 days before your check-in date. Otherwise, you can reserve Fastpasses 30 days before your first park day. For the most choice, book as early as possible. You can always change or cancel this if necessary.
I recommend booking Big Thunder Mountain Railroad as your first Fastpass of the day. We'll book it to start for no earlier than 1 hour after the park opens. For example, if the park opens at 9am, shoot for a starting time at 10-10:30. This will give us time to hit a few other attractions before using this first Fastpass.
The next two Fastpases we'll book in Fantasyland. The ideals are Peter Pan's Flight and Seven warfs Mine Train. Wheichever of those you can book, go for it. Try for Peter Pan before Seven Dwarfs, simply to avoid some backtracking, but either way works. Don't worry if there is a gap between them or if there is a bit of a gap between the first of these and the earlier one for Big Thunder. This plan accounts for being able to fill gaps between Fastpasses as well as use Fastpasses one after another.
If you are unable to get both Peter Pan and Seven Dwarfs, shoot for Splash Mountain before or as close to the Big Thunder Fastpass as you can. Since, we'll start in Adventure and Frontier lands and Slash Mountain can be busy even in the morning, it's well worth it. (If the line's not too long, you might get to double dip on it :D).
Starting the day
On the day of, get there early. Like, before opening early. You'll have access to Main Street (the better to buy stuff, my dear) but not to any of the lands. This way you can get through the turnstiles and avoid hold ups there. You'll probaby notice people lining up to head into tomorrow and fantasy lands.
However, we'll head toward Adventure land. Typically, this is the least busy area right of the bat. Most folks will race to Seven Dwarfs Mine ride, or Space Mountain, leaving this side of the park relatively empty. Skip past Swiss Fmaily Robinson Tree House and Magic Carpets of Agrabah to head straight to The Jungle Cruise. Typically, we walk right on and are one of the first cruises of the day. IF you have young onese, get toward the front of the boat and they might be able to steer a little.
Next after Jungle Cruise is Pirates of the Carribean. Dead men tell no tales, and the early birds don't wait in long lines. Try not to get too bogged down playing with the muskets after the boat ride and head toward Splash Mountain.
Splash Mountain is typically the first time we call an audible of the day. Most times, the wait is under 20 minutes and we jump right in line. However, sometimes, there's already a good wait. If you have time before the end of your Big Thunder fastpass, go for it. Afterall, this is Disney and there will be some lines. If you don't have time, or don't want to wait, skip Splash Mountain for now.
Now's the time, Big Thunder Mountain. By this time of day, the wait for Big Thunder is probably getting a little steep. Luckily, you did a little planning ahead and are prepared. Head to the Fastpass+ Return entrance and skip the growing standby line. Hold unto your hats and get ready for the wildest ride in the west!!
After whipping around the mountain on a runaway train, start heading toward Fantasyland. I always recommend eating at off times during the day. You can spend a lot of time waiting to order food if you want to eat lunch right at noon. Feeling peckish already? Great, you can stop into Pecos Bill's right in Frontierland. They have great taco salads alongs with a self-serve taco topping bar. Eat now and avoid the lines.
Then keep heading toward Fantasyland. On the way, you'll pass throug Liberty Square and the Haunted Mansion. Check the wait time for the mansion. It can be hit or miss and depending on your Fastpass+ times in Fantasyland, you can check out the happy haunts. If it doesn't work out now, that's ok. You'll definitely want to come back to Liberty Square to check out The Muppets Present…Great Moments in American History. It's hilarious!
As you approach Fantasyland, notice Rapunzel's tower to the left. There are bathrooms here as well. If you had lunch already, it might be time for a pit stop. Generally, these bathrooms are just out of the way enough to make for a quick stop.
Biding time in Fantasyland
As the time comes to start using your next two Fastpasses, you might have some time to kill. Luckily, there are several typically short wait attractions in Fantasyland. First on your way into Fantasyland is it's a small world. This classic generally has enough guest throughput to keep the wait times small. Despite the song being stuck in your head for the rest of the day, you gotta do it, right?
Another great is Mickey's PhilharMagic. I love this attraction: classic 4-D effects; although the projectors could use some updating. We almost always walk right onto this one.
Another option, if you didn't eat earlier, and it's not right at noon, is Pinocchio Village Haus with views overlooking it's a small world. It's fun to people watch the loading and unloading even after lunch is over.
Redeem the next two Fastpasses
When your return times start, head to Peter Pan's Flight or Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and enjoy passing the undoubtedly ballooning standby lines. With good reason, these are two of the top attractions in Magic Kingdom.
Now you've knocked out the best of Adventure, Frontier, and Fantasyland with the bulk of the day yet to come! Hope you enjoyed the morning and have a great rest of the day at Magic Kingdom!
- Chris Marshall