Nighttime Fun

Magic Kingdom fireworks

What do you do for fun at Walt Disney World once the sun goes down?
We’ve got some suggestions for you.


My favorite nighttime activity is being in the Magic Kingdom at night and enjoying the fireworks as well as some of the rides at night. It takes on a different feel for me than being there during the day, especially Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, as well as the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean. Go figure! (ºoºCliffºoº)

The Castle all lit up is just so beautiful and magical. Any of the parks turn extra magical at night somehow. Plus, when you stay until the end, a lot of times you can quickly get on rides that would normally have long waits. (Splash Mountain is one that I love at night; the view when you go around the outside curves is great! Tower of Terror is another with a great view at night.) (TerryM)

For the younger set: Any of the special “ticket” parties at Magic Kingdom – Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party or Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party – Watching any of the fireworks – Riding some of the outside rides after dark (we especially enjoy Big Thunder Mountain). (WDWGrandma)

I can’t leave out Fantasmic! It’s, without a doubt, the best show on site. My wife and I never miss it. Just this past September, I made sure that my parents, along with my sister and her family, went to see it with me on their trip to the World. I drove up for the weekend and gave them a personalized tour since it had been so long since they were there and it was the first trip for my nephew and two nieces. They had a blast and loved the show. The finale gets me every time. (Pete)

I vote for any of the nightly shows in any of the parks for all ages! What makes it even better is buying a dinner package in Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom getting preferred seating for the show. (Nancy)

Watching IllumiNations with margaritas from Mexico. (JMM7171)

It would have to be IllumiNations for all ages. My 9-year-old nephew still talks about it and it’s been two years since we went to WDW. (Marianna)

My very favorite place to be at night is World Showcase; somehow without the glare of the hot Florida sun it feels so much more like being in another country. It’s the one thing that my husband and I always agree on, especially during the Food & Wine Festival. We could eat dinner at those little food booths every night. Is it October yet?? (Lynn Behr)


Dinner at ‘Ohana, overlooking Seven Seas Lagoon, followed by watching the fireworks show while sitting on the beach at the Polynesian. We had watched the fireworks in Magic Kingdom the previous night but watching at the Poly gave me a whole new perspective on it. Like watching two different shows. (LindaM)

As someone who is fortunate enough to stay in the Contemporary, there is nothing like sitting on your balcony watching the Magic Kingdom fireworks your first night there after driving two days from NJ. Seems to make it all worth it. (Tom G)

Watching the fireworks from the California Grill deck after dinner there. (Danielle)

A romantic dinner at Narcoossee’s at the Grand Floridian. As dessert is served, the Electric Water Parade goes by. Yes, it’s dated, but it’s darn cute! (Patty)

Every year we have our Thanksgiving dinner at Narcoosee’s around 7 p.m. After a truly lovely dinner consisting of the typical Thanksgiving fare (although you do have many other selections like lamb, pork, and steak) we always walk outside to the patio to watch the Electric Water Pageant and the fireworks. Since it is just my husband and me it is always romantic, and if the patio gets a little crowded, we just walk a little further down by the boat ramp. (Maggie)

For a romantic dinner go to Victoria and Albert’s. Also romantic is dinner at California Grill (especially if you are seated where you can see the fireworks at the MK). For unusual but delicious food, try dinner at Jiko. (WDWGrandma)

Great nightcaps would be to stop at each “Monorail resort” for a drink at the most romantic spots in each hotel. (Brian)

Jellyrolls at the BoardWalk is great fun — listening to the duelling pianos, singing along at the top of our lungs! (Debbie)

We have found that the Electric Water Pageant is lovely and romantic. (LauraD)

I enjoy the campfire sing-along and movie at Fort Wilderness Campground. That is the ultimate in movie-watching outdoors, while roasting marshmallows and stuffing yourself silly. And my husband just enjoys being with me, watching me act like a little kid all over again. (Bev)

We like to have dinner at Flying Fish or somewhere in the BoardWalk area, then walk around the BoardWalk watching the entertainers, sometimes getting a glimpse of the fireworks in the distance, then get an ice cream or poke around in the Screen Door General Store… (Deb Koma)

Strolling the Boardwalk is always a must-do for me! (Phil)

Don’t forget the cast member with the night vision binoculars at Animal Kingdom Lodge, after hearing the storytelling around the firepit (following dinner at Boma of course!). (Lynn)

For smaller ones: The storyteller at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, coupled with strolling the grounds to see if any animals are out. (Patty)

I have fond memories of the first time that we visited Walt Disney World and took our three young children to Hoop Dee Doo Revue at Fort Wilderness. The kids loved it almost as much as the adults did! (bindi618032)

One of our favorite nighttime fun things is good for the children and adults. We love to catch the boat from Port Orleans Riverside (our resort of choice) after dark and cruise down to Disney Springs. It definitely has the romance factor going for it. There’s New Orleans-type music piped in and the lights from the resorts and shops are beautiful. But we’ve had a great time riding with the children. This year on the way to Disney Springs the captain asked Disney trivia questions while giving us facts about the sights, and on the way back after the shopping, the children were settled right down and ready for bed, lulled by the sounds of the river. And settled-down children are not easy to come by at Walt Disney World. (Melinda H)

Our favorite thing to do is to see the fireworks at Magic Kingdom, and then go and have a nice nighttime swim at our hotel. It is so relaxing! (disneymommy2801)

Relaxing in the hot tub by the pool at the Dolphin hotel. It’s a beautiful hot tub and you can see the fireworks from Epcot over the trees. I also really enjoy finishing my day with a swim in the hotel pool, no matter which hotel I’m staying at. It’s a great way to cool off if it’s been a hot day, it relaxes me and then I’m ready for a good night’s sleep before heading off to the parks again in the morning. (Teresa)

My husband and I love to grab a treat from Beaches and Cream and take it to the Solarium at the Beach Club for a quiet treat after a busy day in the parks. The other favorite is mixed drinks and relaxation in the hot tub at our hotel. (DeBestWife)

Mini-golf. (Wolfengesteinen)


The Lego store, and toy store in Disney Springs. Of course all of this would have to assume that the parks have already closed… otherwise why would you be anywhere else? (DeBestWife)

Disney Springs is the place to be at night! When it’s night out with family we head to Ghirardelli’s for ice cream and frozen bananas – yummy. Dinner at Planet Hollywood or Rainforest Cafe, and pin-trading. (disneynutmary)

Dinner at the Rainforest Cafe in Disney Springs, followed by dessert at Ghirardelli’s. We then like to hit all the big shops in the Marketplace. (Pete)

Beyond all of the obvious responses like IllumiNations and Fantasmic – we love Disney Springs at night. And who could pass up Hoop Dee Doo Revue – not my son! (Lynn)


I think it would be neat if Disney set up one of their water parks to run late at night as well as in the day in the peak of the summer season. (BigBrian)

Being one of the last to leave the Magic Kingdom. We had a late dinner at Tony’s Town Square one night and the park closed, and it was so magical. The music still played, the lights were on. We stood up on the train station and just enjoyed. Hanging out back at the hotel (POR, my preference) and enjoying the ambiance, reliving the day at the pool with a cool drink. Planning our next day. Walking out of Epcot at the end of day… smelling the roses (literally), enjoying the reverse fountain, and the sparkles in the pavement near the main fountain. Visiting another hotel and just checking out the theme. Soaking in a hot tub. Ahh, my dogs are tired. (Nancy)

I think a lot of the events are done by everyone, IllumiNations etc. The key for us was to step back from rushing from Fastpass to Fastpass, and say, “OK, let’s stop and make this a special ‘us’ time.” We would find a quieter vista and a little treat and relax together. (Brian)

Disney World Night Activities