Here’s Everything You Need to Know About a Reopened Magic Kingdom in Disney World

After a nearly four month closure, the Disney World theme parks have started welcoming guests back again!

Magic Kingdom

Earlier this week we attended the Annual Passholder Previews for both Disney’s Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, which you can check out below! Today we will be adding in our experience, and any differences we saw from the grand reopening, so follow along!

We will continue to update this post throughout the week, so make sure to check back for updates! 

Grand Reopening

Transportation

The Resort hotel transportation was running to Magic Kingdom, with hours listed for each method.

Polynesian Resort Transportation Hours

The Monorail began running at 7AM, though it did not start dropping off at Magic Kingdom until 8:30AM. At Disney’s Polynesian Resort, you are not able to walk over to the Ticket and Transportation Center — the area was entirely blocked off from entry.

Polynesian Resort Walkway to TTC
Polynesian Resort Walkway to TTC

For the Monorail, security was set up outside, with markings on the ground for physical distancing.

Polynesian Resort Monorail

It’s important to note that, while we were not far back in line for the Monorail, three different Monorails went by before we were able to get on one. This is likely because they are limiting each cabin to two parties, so without anyone getting off, there is limited room for additional riders. However, it’s something to keep in mind if you plan on taking the Resort Monorail to the parks!

Monorail

Park Entrance

Park entry worked pretty much the same as we had seen at the Passholder Preview!

Magic Kingdom Entrance

Like we saw this morning at Animal Kingdom, they are using the MagicBand scanners without requiring fingerprint scanning.

MagicBand Scanner

There was also a welcome surprise — characters greeting guests above the train station!

Magic Kingdom Welcome Show
Magic Kingdom Welcome Show

Crowd Levels

Once inside the park, Main Street USA definitely was looking a little crowded to start!

Magic Kingdom Morning Crowds

While it looks like a lot of people, it’s important to note that this crowd quickly dispersed once further down Main Street.

Magic Kingdom Morning Crowds

Over at Main Street Bakery, there was a line forming for guests to pick up their morning cup of coffee!

Main Street Bakery Line

Ride Wait Times

As we saw at the Passholder Previews, crowds are definitely heavier for the early morning. At 10AM, some of the longest wait times were for boat rides, with Pirates of the Caribbean at a 50 minute wait, and Splash Mountain at 45 minutes.

Source: My Disney Experience

Considering it’s the official grand reopening, these wait times are comparatively short! We will continue to update throughout the day, though, to get a better idea of how they change as the day goes on.

Source: My Disney Experience

Some rides also had a shorter wait than what was listed. Over at Big Thunder Mountain, it was listed as 25 minutes, but we were on within about ten.

Big Thunder Mountain Line
Big Thunder Mountain

Certain lines like Space Mountain seemed long…

Space Mountain Line

….but in reality were more of a 15 minute wait. The length of the line is typically due to guest spacing.

Space Mountain loading

One big line we saw AGAIN today? The line for the Splash Mountain gift shop! First, you had to get in this line to sign up for the virtual queue…

Splash Mountain Gift Shop Virtual Line
Splash Mountain Gift Shop Virtual Line Sign Up

…and then, when you get a text telling you to return, you can go to this line!

Splash Mountain Gift Shop Virtual Line Return

Read MORE about the 240 minute wait for Splash Mountain merch at the Passholder Preview!

In fact, the line for Splash merchandise was so long that by midday, the virtual queue had reached capacity! While Cast Members were still allowing guests to  sign up for their spot, they were letting them know that entry was not guaranteed for the rest of the day.

Splash Mountain merchandise

Read more about Splash Mountain’s gift shop reaching capacity for the day here!

Mobile Order

Mobile Order at Pecos Bills was a lot quicker today than it was for the Passholder Preview! While heading that way, we did notice that there was some light crowding that happened when it started to rain.

Rain Crowds

However, we quickly received our food through Mobile Order!

Pecos Bill Mobile Order

While many Quick Service restaurants are asking that guests wait until their food is ready to enter the restaurant, if you do want a free cup of water, we have found that by asking a Cast Member outside they will usually be able to assist!

Free Cup of Water

Read more about the new Quick Service dining process Disney World here!

Character Cavalcades

When we were done with lunch, we were met with LOTS of characters! Up on the roof, it was none other than the Country Bears greeting guests!

Country Bears
Country Bears

And then, Goofy’s Character Cavalcade came by!

Goofy’s Character Cavalcade

This character float included Clarabelle!

Clarabelle

Plus, the cavalcade’s namesake, Goofy, was on top!

Goofy

Click here to read MORE about the new character experience at both Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom!

Annual Passholder Preview

Parking

Parking has now been shifted to cashless payments.

Cashless Payment

Signage is out clearly indicating the rates so guests can have their payment ready when parking.

Parking Rates

Cars are spaced out leaving an empty spot between each car.

Parking

We spotted the parking lot trams currently not in service.

Trams

Temperature and Bag Checks

At the Ticket and Transportation Center, there are tents set up where you will have your temperature taken, and go through security check.

Temperature Screening Tents

Disney is now testing out a new security method, where instead of a regular bag check, they will ask that you put any electronics or metal in your bag into a provided plastic bag.

Transportation

At the Ticket and Transportation Center, guests have the option of getting to Magic Kingdom by the Monorail or the Ferry Boat. For the Monorail, markers are spaced out in the queue as you wait.

Monorail Queue

All guests in line are asked to stand with their party on a specific number, where you are asked to wait until the next Monorail has come in.

Monorail Number

Each compartment will get up to two parties, and a Cast Member will ask that each party remain seated on a single side for the duration of the ride.

Monorail

Behind each set of seats they have installed a partition to separate you from the party behind you.

Monorail Partitions
Monorail Partitions

Park Entrance

Similar to what we’ve seen at Universal Studios, Magic Kingdom’s entrance has markers for guests to wait on with their party until it’s their turn to be checked in.

Magic Kingdom Entrance

Outside the park, there are also a variety of Health and Safety notices set up, signs similar to what we have seen at Disney Springs and the Resort hotels.

Health and Safety Signs

Character Cavalcades

Once inside of Magic Kingdom, we immediately spotted some of the character cavalcades that Disney had revealed would be a part of the reopening!

Character Cavalcade

The Main Street Trolley went by with Eeyore, Rabbit, and Piglet all aboard and waving to guests throughout the park.

Rabbit and Piglet on the Character Cavalcade

The trio were easy to grab a picture of as they drove by, allowing for a modified character experience still in the parks.

Rabbit, Piglet, and Eeyore on the Main Street Trolley

Later on, we also spotted the Mickey and Friends Character Cavalcade, which featured Mickey, Minnie, and Donald all driving by with some Cast Members following behind.

Character Cavalcade

Similar to what we had seen earlier in the day, the Cavalcade slowly went by, giving guests ample opportunity to snap a picture of the characters onboard.

Mickey and Friends Character Cavalcade

We even spotted Tinker Bell on top a huge treasure chest!

Tinker Bell

When we saw her pass by again (they come around relatively frequently form what we’ve seen!) we spotted the Country Bears on the balcony above their ride in Frontierland waving at the fairy!

Hi Big Al!

We also spotted a variety of characters around the parks! Over in Adventureland, Jack Sparrow was out, giving guests a chance to take a selfie with him in the background.

Capt. Jack Sparrow

In Tomorrowland, Stitch was out and about…

Stitch

…as was Buzz Lightyear!

Buzz Lightyear

Throughout the course of the day we saw a variety of cavalcades. There are five in total, moving through Main Street during random intervals of the day. The Princess Cavalcade was led by none other than Merida, on her horse Angus!

Merida and Angus

She was followed by a float with a LOT of princesses!

Princess Cavalcade

Read more about the Princess Cavalcade (including ANGUS) here!

And followed up by none other than Gaston…

Gaston

…and then the Fantasyland Friends Cavalcade!

Fantasyland Friends Character Cavalcade

As you’re exiting the park, you’ll also see some familiar faces greeting you at the train station!

Train Station Characters

Read more about the character experiences at Disney World here!

Cinderella Castle

One of our most frequently asked questions for the reopening was exactly how Cinderella Castle is looking mid-makeover. The answer is that the castle is looking well on its way to being done!

Cinderella Castle

There were still some cranes out doing work, but overall the castle is looking very pink and blue!

Cinderella Castle

The castle is still very much under construction, as we spotted a number of workers still hand-painting the castle today!

Construction Workers Painting the Castle

We even caught some of Disney World’s smallest inhabitants out and about checking out the new castle!

Have You Seen Donald, Mr. Duck?

Check out more photos from the new Cinderella Castle here!

Notably, there is a different PhotoPass experience when you take a picture in front of Cinderella Castle now. A PhotoPass photographer will not be able to use your phone for photography.

Cinderella Castle

Additionally, we were told to leave our face masks on for the photo. We will continue to keep you updated on any further developments with these policies.

Cinderella Castle

Read more about what you NEED to know when getting your castle picture now!

Ride Experience

Overall, ride wait times have been relatively short today, though we will be able to get a better gauge on wait times during the Annual Passholder Preview and at the grand reopening later this week. Due to the spacing in lines, sometimes lines looked like they would take a while to get through, but overall moved quickly. At Peter Pan’s Flight, there were spacing markers throughout the queue.

Peter Pan’s Flight

For Peter Pan, each ride vehicle was being loaded with one party as normal.

Peter Pan’s Flight

Seven Dwarves Mine Train was set up differently, with partitions throughout the queue to ensure a barrier between guests.

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Interactive elements for the ride’s line were also blocked off.

Mine Train Queue

Distancing markers are placed throughout the queue to space guests in line.

Distancing Markers

For the ride itself, they loaded every other row, which is another spacing aspect we’ve seen previously at Universal Orlando.

Mine Train

At Prince Charming’s Regal Carrousel, we were instructed to load to a specific numbered row of the carousel. From there, we could select our own horse.

Carrousel Horse

The horses, we were told, are being sanitized every two hours. Sanitizer is readily available for guests before and after riding.

Read more about the FULL Disney World ride experience here!

On Splash Mountain, they were loading one party per log. For our ride at least, they did not ask us to take our face masks off once seated like they did for the water rides at Universal, so we kept our face masks on the entirety of the ride.

Splash Mountain

There was a Cast Member sanitizing each log as they came through as well.

Cast Member sanitizing the log on Splash Mountain

Click here for more on the Splash Mountain ride experience!

Over at the Haunted Mansion, we were curious what the procedure would be for a ride with a pre-show.

Haunted Mansion

Turns out, they did end up skipping the pre-show entirely, and had guests walk through the Stretching Room instead.

Stretching Room

Read more about the missing Stretching Room at Haunted Mansion here!

Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin was running as usual, though in the queue, Buzz was notably missing!

Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin

On rides like the Jungle Cruise, guests are heavily spaced out on the ride, and instructed by their Skipper where to sit.

Jungle Cruise

Boat rides like Pirates of the Caribbean have long queues due to distancing, but they’re moving at a steady pace.

Pirates of the Caribbean

We were loaded on a boat with one other party at the front of the boat here.

Pirates of the Caribbean

On Prince Charming’s Regal Carrousel, we were instructed to stand by a number marked on the ground. From there we were free to select our own horse.

Carrousel Horse

These are being cleaned, we were told, every two hours.

We’ve noticed rides that typically utilized the Rider Switch service or a Disability Access Service Pass are still recognizing these services. Most rides in Magic Kingdom had a station near the front to let a Cast Member know you wish to use these services.

Rider Switch and DAS Services at Space Mountain

In most instances we observed, guests were directed through the FastPass queue to ride when they were ready and able for their turn to ride.

The Peoplemover has been closed for the day. We’ll keep you posted if we see it reopen.

Peoplemover

Relaxation Stations

When Disney originally proposed their reopening, they mentioned the possibility of “relaxation zones” throughout the parks. Similar to Universal Orlando’s URest Areas, these were proposed as areas of the park where guests could safely remove their face mask while maintaining physical distancing. We spotted one of these new Relaxation Stations in Frontierland at the Golden Oak Outpost.

Relaxation Station

The spot has spaced out seating and Cast Members nearby. There is a limited occupancy in the area, so if it has filled up, there is a line set up for parties to wait for their turn.

Relaxation Zone

Inside the area, there are tables and seats that are marked off as unavailable, ensuring that guests can keep their distance from one another.

Relaxation Station

Another Relaxation Station can be found over at Tomorrowland Terrace.

Relaxation Station
Relaxation Station in Tomorrowland

The third and final Relaxation Station in Magic Kingdom is located in Pete’s Silly Sideshow. This spot is the only air-conditioned location of the three and offers tables and standing options.

Relaxation Station at Pete’s Silly Sideshow

Quick Service Dining

Like we have seen at Disney Springs, mobile order is being implemented for use at Quick Service restaurants. We placed an order for Cosmic Ray’s through the My Disney Experience app, and received a message telling us to wait outside the restaurant until we got a notification that our order was ready.

Mobile Order

Once the order was ready, we received a notification to “Pick Up at 7.”

Mobile Order

This makes more sense when you go inside, where you will see specific stations that your order can be picked up at.

Mobile Order Pick-Up

As this is their first day back for Cast Member Previews, they were still working out the system, but most of the party received their order relatively quickly! When you go to pick up, there is a partition separating you from the Cast Member who has your food.

Mobile Order Pick-Up

Once you have your food, you can follow the arrows over to the seating arrow, where Sonny Eclipse is out playing!

Seating
Sonny Eclipse

A variety of tables have signs requesting that no one sit there.

Spaced Seating

These signs ensure that different parties will be able to space out from one another.

Spaced Seating

We stopped by Pecos Bills Tall Tale Inn for a bite and noticed many of the same procedures. The topping bar was missing. Instead, you order any toppings to go with your meal.

Pecos Bills

They were still working a few kinks out when we dined — our order took quite a while to be prepared!

Nachos

Aloha Isle is also working with a limited menu and encouraging Mobile Order.

Aloha Isle Mobile Order

We asked if some of the menu items that were lost could make a comeback and the Cast Members there were hopeful they’ll return down the road.

Aloha Isle Counter

At Main Street Bakery (aka Starbucks!) all guests enter in the same door and filter through one distanced line to order.

Main Street Bakery

We placed an order and were instructed to wait on a marker until our order was ready.

Order Waiting Area

A Cast Member behind plexiglass handed us our drink.

Starbucks Cast Member

Then we had a very happy and caffeinated Molly!

Molly Says HI!

Read more about Quick Service Dining and Mobile Order at Disney World here!

Table Service Dining

We swung by Skipper Canteen in Adventureland and noticed that in addition the Mobile Dine Check-in signage…

Skipper Canteen

…distancing markers were clearly displayed indicating where guests could…

Skipper Canteen

…and could not sit.

Skipper Canteen

We took a break for lunch today over at Be Our Guest Restaurant where, for today, walk-up seating was available!

Be Our Guest

The Quick Service Lunch is no longer available at Be Our Guest, rather we chose from the items on the previous prix-fixe the dinner menu.

Be Our Guest

We even had a special guest at Lunch with us!

Well Hi There, Beast

Shopping

The stores have also severely limited capacity, so if at any point a major store like the Emporium reaches its max capacity, they will implement a virtual line for entry, like we previously have seen at World of Disney in Disney Springs.

The Emporium Entrance

Inside the store, there are plexiglass barriers at the registers, where they are encouraging contactless payment.

The Emporium

Around the store, there are health and safety reminder signs, along with markers encouraging distancing for shoppers waiting in line to check out.

The Emporium Signage
The Emporium

Additionally, the dressing rooms are currently closed for guest use.

Dressing Room Sign

Other shops, like the Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe in Liberty Square, hand ample hand sanitizer available and markers indicating where guests should stand in order to make purchases.

Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe

Sadly for the smaller (hey, or bigger) kids in your group, Sir Mickey’s is currently not offering free pixie dusting anymore.

Sir Mickey’s

Extras

We had a sneaking suspicion this wouldn’t make the cut following the reopening, but the Tomorrowland ball is currently out of commission for all you folks who enjoyed making this guy spin.

Tomorrowland Ball

Cinderella’s Wishing Well near the castle is still accessible to guests though, should you like to make a wish on your next visit.

Wishing Well

The Camel is STILL spitting at Magic Carpets of Aladdin (we know you were worried about this!). They weren’t going crazy, but we did notice the camels back in action.

Magic Carpets of Aladdin

Transportation Back to the Ticket and Transportation Center

Heading out of the park, we took the Monorail back to the Ticket and Transportation Center. The ramp to the monorail has spacing markers throughout, with yellow tape down the middle that indicates where guests should not stand.

Express Monorail from Magic Kingdom
Monorail

Similar to at the TTC station, the Magic Kingdom Monorail station also had numbers marked for parties.

Monorail Station

On our way back, we also spotted some work being done to the in-progress Grand Floridian walkway to Magic Kingdom.

Grand Floridian Resort Walkway Construction

Read more about the Grand Floridian to Magic Kingdom walkway construction progress!

We will continue to update throughout the week, so stay tuned and follow along  with us!

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6 Replies to “Here’s Everything You Need to Know About a Reopened Magic Kingdom in Disney World”

  1. Not my Magic Kingdom. Looks like a ghost town. Never thought I would say I missed the crowds. Heard you were not aloud to scream on Seven Dwarfs is that true. No photopass on main street? Place needs to get back to normal

  2. Never waited more than 30 minutes for a ride. Rode most. Low crowd level was unbelievable. My wife and I (69 & 68) had a blast.

  3. The monorail starts picking up passengers at Polynesian at 7:00, but doesn’t drop off at Magic Kingdom until 8:30? What does it do for 1 1/2 hours?

  4. I just realized that we won’t be hearing castmembers hollering “please fill in all of the available space” any longer… probably one of the only things that I won’t miss…