Disney's Magic Kingdom

Main Street with the Invictus Games parade [© Disney. All rights reserved]
Main Street with the Invictus Games parade [© Disney. All rights reserved]

Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom, the first Walt Disney World Resort park in Florida, opened in 1971 and follows the same basic layout at the original Disneyland park in California.

If you have small children then this is probably one of the best places to take them. As well as all the rides and attractions, you can also get to meet some of their favourite cartoon characters like Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Donald Duck and many others.

Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom is the most popular theme park in the world with an estimated 20.4 million visitors in 2015

To actually get to the Walt Disney Magic Kingdom you must park at the Walt Disney World Resort Ticket and Transportation Center and then take one of two monorail trains or a paddle-boat ferry across the Seven Seas Lagoon.

Note that there is also a monorail service connecting the Ticket and Transportation Center to Epcot.

Monorail Service

When leaving the Magic Kingdom, there will be two queues for the Monorail, one sign posted Ticket and Transportation Center (TTC) and the other sign posted Disney Resorts.

If the TTC queue looks long, simply take the Resorts monorail. Both monorails actually go to the TTC but the Resorts monorail stops at Disney’s Contemporary Resort Hotel (it actually goes right through the middle of the hotel) first and generally is less crowded as most people automatically queue in the TTC line.

You enter the Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom under the Main Street Station and walk up Main Street USA towards the trademark Disney Cinderalla’s castle.

Radiating from the central hub of the castle are six separate themed ‘lands’ representing different aspects of life in America. Reading clockwise they are:

  • Main Street USA – a Victorian styled street complete with a barbers shop, cinema and way too many shops to walk past without buying something!
  • Adventureland – with a mixture of African and Caribbean themes, home to the Jungle Cruise and Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Frontierland – reliving Hollywood’s vision of the Old West and the pioneer days, with the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster and Splash Mountain log plume ride
  • Liberty Square – post colonial America in the 18th and 19th centuries represented by the Hall of Presidents and the Haunted Mansion
  • Fantasyland – centred on Cinderalla’s castle, home to many of the young children’s favourite rides including Dumbo and It’s a Small World
  • Tomorrowland – sometimes referred to as “Yesterdayland”, by its very nature it is constantly having to evolve to keep up and is home to the Space Mountain roller coaster

Another land called Mickey’s Toontown Fair where you could meet Mickey and Minnie Mouse and even get your photo taken with them, a magnet for children young and old, was absorbed into a rebuilt Fantasyland when Fantasyland was redeveloped.

Of course when you think of Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom, you must not forget the parades and fireworks.

Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom is the most popular theme park in the world with an estimated 20.4 million visitors in 2015. That is an average of over 55,000 people every single day of the year but on some days those numbers can easily double.

Starting in 2016, Disney has been offering special Disney After Hours tickets which gives you access to the more popular attractions but with way fewer guests. These are limited time offers for only a few select nights.

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