A DisneyWorld experience is very much colored by the age of your children. When Douglas was younger, we booked character meals every trip (407-WDW-DINE, book early), waited in line to meet the characters and managed to do most of the kiddie rides in the Magic Kingdom. As he’s gotten older though, we’ve found that we prefer Animal Kingdom, Epcot, SeaWorld and the Universal theme parks.
This year though, we went back to Magic Kingdom because this was Dave’s nieces’ first trip to DisneyWorld, and kitschy though it may be, you have to at least see the core park.
And the Small World ride. Everyone has to experience that at least once in his/her life. They recently re-opened a revamped Small World ride at Disneyland in California, but the Florida one is still the old familiar and somewhat creepy favorite. Best part was that the hippo in Africa no longer blinks at you. One of his eyes is broken so he winks. Priceless.
It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears
It’s a world of hopes and a world of fears
There’s so much that we share
That it’s time we’re aware
It’s a small world after all
Isn’t it great — I don’t have to even play the song and now it’s running around in your head and won’t leave. You’re welcome.
The girls didn’t want to meet characters and Douglas is well past that, so our day of Magic was driven by getting FASTPASSES to the two operating roller coasters, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Splash Mountain (Space Mountain was closed). We also managed to squeeze in Stitch’s Great Escape (new since the last time we were at Disney) and the Monsters Inc. comedy show in Tomorrowland.
Tips for Magic Kingdom
- When you get in the park, take the train ride around to the Toontown/Tomorrowland area and work your way back
- FASTPASS times are a range during which you can board the ride through the shorter line. You can get your next FASTPASS at the starting time on the current one. If you can, get the FASTPASS for your next ride before you get on the first one.