Orlando Travel Guide - MustSeeOrlando.com
Guide to Magic Kingdom-Disney World
The Kids' Perspective
Written by Staff Writer - 06/16/08

Introduction

Magic Kingdom Disney World Orlando
Magic Kingdom was the very first theme park at Disney World in Orlando, opening in 1971. Like other Disney theme parks, Magic Kingdom is made up of various sections with a number of attractions, rides, and dining and shopping opportunities within each section. Kids of all ages will thoroughly enjoy Magic Kingdom, and this is certainly a park where you can plan to spend more than one day.

The children offering their perspectives for this article recently spent five days at Disney World, including two days and one evening at Magic Kingdom. Grant and Kayla are brother and sister

from Huntley, Illinois, which is about 50 miles northwest of Chicago. They stayed at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa with their parents and their brothers, Carter and Max.

The Park

To give you a little information on what the kids experienced at Magic Kingdom, here are a few highlights of the various sections. Note that there are dining options within each section.

Main Street U.S.A. - Main Street U.S.A. starts at the entrance to the park and takes you to Cinderella’s Castle at the center of the park. At Main Street U.S.A., you can hop on board the Walt Disney World Railroad for a 20-minute ride around the park, with stops at Frontierland and Mickey's Toontown Fair. In addition, there are lots of shops along Main Street U.S.A.

Adventureland - Adventureland features the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, Swiss Family Robinson’s Treehouse, The Magic Carpets of Aladdin, and a Jungle Cruise.

Frontierland - At Frontierland, see why Grant was so impressed with the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, which is a runaway mining train coaster ride. This area also features the famous Splash Mountain with its 5-story drop for the big kids and the Country Bear Jamboree musical revue for the little kids.

Liberty Square - The main attraction at Liberty Square is the Haunted Mansion, which Disney categorizes as a “mild but wild thrill”. Hmmm…just how mild and wild would that be? Also in this section, you can board the Liberty Square Riverboat for a cruise around Tom Sawyer Island.

Fantasyland - Fantasyland is all about the youngsters. Probably the most famous tots’ ride is “it’s a small world”, which is a boat ride featuring animated doll figures from all over the world. There are lots of rides and shows in this section, each featuring a beloved Disney character, including Winnie the Pooh, The Little Mermaid, Cinderella, Peter Pan (one of Grant’s and Kayla’s favorite rides), Snow White, Dumbo the Elephant and, of course, Mickey Mouse.

Mickey’s Toontown Fair - This section includes Mickey’s and Minnie’s Country Houses, which you can tour through. At the Toontown Hall of Fame Tent, meet Disney characters and get their autographs. The kids will have fun at Donald’s Boat, a water play area.

Tomorrowland - Space Mountain is the prime feature at Tomorrowland. This indoor roller coaster is a blast through space and reserved for the brave ones. One of Grant’s favorites, driving a racecar at the Indy Speedway, is located here and both Grant and Kayla loved shooting targets on Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. Other options include flying a spaceship at Astro Orbiter, seeing the Monsters, Inc. interactive show and assuming the role of security guard at Stitch’s Great Escape.


Kayla (age 6) Grant (age 8)

The Kids’ Perspectives

What was your favorite part of Magic Kingdom?

Grant: The Buzz Lightyear Ride because I liked shooting at the targets. Also the Thundermountain Railroad.

Kayla: The Peter Pan ride and Mickey and Minnie’s houses. Minnie’s house was the best. My other favorite part was seeing Tinkerbell fly in the sky when the fireworks started.

What else did you like?

Grant: The Peter Pan ride. It was funny seeing the statue guys doing stuff, like the pirates making a girl walk off the plank and they tied people to a wall. The Speedway was funny because you can bump into other cars.

Kayla: The Buzz Lightyear ride.

Your family went to the character breakfast at The Crystal Palace. How was it and what did you have for breakfast?

Grant: It was nice because we could get character autographs. I got autographs from Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore and Piglet. I had waffles, stuffed French toast (it was puffy), grapes and watermelon, donut holes and a mini bagel. It was very good.

Kayla: I liked it because we took pictures with the characters and got their autographs. I had French toast, pancakes, a donut, grapes and orange juice. It was the best ever!

Is there anything you didn’t like at Magic Kingdom?

Grant: I didn’t like the long lines, but for one ride we had a fast pass we went by lots of people in line. Also, it was hot, which was kind of annoying.

Kayla: I didn’t like the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. It was too scary.

How were the fireworks?

Grant: They were really loud, but cool.

Kayla: They were pretty good. (Note: Kayla doesn’t like loud noises and kept her ears covered!)

Do you think your brother Carter (age 2˝) had fun? Your brother Max (age 1) didn’t go with you during the daytime. What would he have liked?

Grant and Kayla: Carter liked the Peter Pan ride and was excited to see the characters at breakfast. Max would like the characters and Mickey’s houses. [And Max’s Mom adds that he would like “it’s a small world”.]

What would you tell a friend who hadn’t been to Magic Kingdom?

Grant: It’s a big place with lots of characters all over the park to sign autographs.

Kayla: It’s really fun and you can get autographs from the characters.


Conclusion

My conclusion is that if I’m taking children to Magic Kingdom, a Disney autograph book is a must-have. Of course any book with blank pages will do, but I’m sure the kids want the Disney version; a variety are sold at the park.

Another must is character dining. Magic Kingdom offers three options - the Crystal Palace located in the Main Street U.S.A. section, Cinderella’s Royal Table located in Cinderella’s Castle and Liberty Tree Tavern located at Liberty Square.

In addition to the characters, the main attractions at Magic Kingdom are the rides, which are suitable for all ages and levels of thrill-seeking.

The park is large (over 100 acres) and there’s a lot to see. Your one-day ticket allows in-out privileges on that day, so you may want to consider arriving early in the morning, then returning in the evening for more fun and the fireworks..

Bottom line - if you’re visiting Disney World with small children, Magic Kingdom must be first on your priority list. Once you visit, you’ll understand why Magic Kingdom’s slogan is “The Most Magical Place on Earth”.


References

Web Attraction Info: Official Web Site:

Pricing: The current standard price for a one-day ticket is $71 for anyone over 9 years of age and $60 for children 3-9 years. Multi-day passes reduce the per-day rate. Check Disney’s website for promotional discounts, multi-day and multi-park discounts, and Florida resident pricing.

Hours: The hours of operation vary both seasonally and daily, so be sure to check the website for the current calendar.

Phone: (407) 939-6244


 



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