Since opening in 1971, Magic Kingdom has become one of the world’s most iconic destinations. Walt Disney World’s first theme park consistently ranks as the most visited park on the planet; a visit there has become a right of passage for millions around the world.
However, despite its magical nature, there are a few ways that a trip to the Magic Kingdom can go disastrously wrong. Through our many visits to Magic Kingdom, we’ve developed five of the biggest “Don’ts” — things you should avoid at all costs when spending a day at the Most Magical place on Earth.
1. Don’t Force Rope Drop
We get it, you’re excited to visit Magic Kingdom — who wouldn’t be? We are often tempted to get to the park as early as possible to try and hit as many ride and shows as we can. However, forcing this on everyone in your party is a mistake. If your significant other, children, or other traveling companions aren’t morning people, putting them in the high pressure situation of getting to the park before opening has the potential to start your Magic Kingdom day off on the wrong foot, and ruin the whole experience.
Instead, how about having a character breakfast at one of the Disney hotels? That way you can start off with some Disney magic bright and early, while allowing the other members of your party to ease into the day… with coffee.
2. Don’t Only Focus on “Rides”
The Magic Kingdom is chock-full of iconic ride-through attractions. From family classics like Peter Pan’s Flight and “it’s a small world” to Imagineering masterpieces like Pirates of the Caribbean and The Haunted Mansion and, of course, the triumvirate of thrilling mountains: Big Thunder, Space, and Splash.
That being said, there’s much more to the park than just rides. If you spend your whole day simply going line to line and attraction to attraction you’ll miss out on all of the thematic elements scattered throughout the park’s lands. We’d suggest taking a few 20-minute breaks throughout the day. Pick a relatively quiet spot — for example a bench on the Rivers of America in Frontierland — and just spend some time taking in your surroundings without worrying about where you need to rush off to next.
3. Don’t Push Yourself (Or Your Family) Too Hard
It’s understandable that you may want to spend all day in the Magic Kingdom. For starters, the place is truly magical. Beyond that, it’s tempting to do so in order to “get your money’s worth” for your admission price. However, pushing yourself or your family too hard, especially in the Florida sun, can lead to melt-downs and even health issues like heatstroke.
A good way to avoid these issues is to take a midday trip back to your hotel for a bite to eat, a dip in the pool, or even just a nap. This will recharge your party’s batteries before returning to the park for the evening.
4. Don’t Save All Your Souvenir Hunting for the End of the Night
On the surface, the logic for saving shopping until the end of the day kind of makes sense. Why “waste” precious park time in stores and then carry a bunch of packages when you can just hit The Emporium on the way out of the park?
The biggest issue is that loads of other people have the same idea, so the park’s biggest stores are packed with tired tourists at the end of the night. You might be better off doing bits of shopping throughout the day, having the packages sent to the front of the park, or even to your Disney hotel if you’re staying on property. Now speaking of the end of the night…
5. Don’t Get Caught in the Stampede
Instead of rushing for the bus stops/monorail station/ferry boat landings with pretty much everyone else in the park and getting crushed in a sea of humanity as soon as the nightly fireworks end, instead, take some time to appreciate the park as it empties out.
Admire the popcorn lighting on Main Street U.S.A., take some photos in the castle hub while it’s empty, and definitely hang around for the special “kiss goodnight” mini-show.
We hope this list is helpful to you next time you visit the Magic Kingdom. Do you have any “Don’ts” that you avoid at all costs while at the park? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.
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