Disney World trip report day 1: Magic KingdomWalt Disney World: The fabulous vacation where everything went as planned and then some started in Magic Kingdom.
From Victoria JurkowskiWe arrived at Pop Century at 9 PM, but still wanted to do Magic Kingdom the next day [more on Pop Century in a later report]. We had found a website a few months ago that had suggestions on which park to go to each day, and it said the best day for magic kingdom that particular week was Sunday. We also wanted to see the Electrical Light Parade, which the site said was on that Sunday as well. However, upon arrival to the park we found out that the Light parade was not that night but the next night.
Posted February 12, 2011 at 11:05 AM
We got to Magic Kingdom about 5 minutes before it opened at 9 because the bus ride was longer than we thought it would be [about 25 minutes] but we didn't have to wait long for the bus. We were unsure of how chilly the night would get so we brought jackets with us and rented a locker for them. When we went to Epcot later that day we found out that you can rent a second locker in a different park for only the price of the deposit, which you do get back again, so really if you buy a locker in one park you get a locker all day in any park.
Splash Mountain was scheduled to be open that day, so we headed there first [after not having to wait in line to get in the park, even though it just opened]. But when we got there we learned it wouldn't reopen until tuesday, which was a huge disappointment. But this didn't ruin our day; we walked right on to Big Thunder and Mansion, did a sweep through Fantasyland and Toontown Fair, did Space Mountain, the People Mover, the Carousel of Progress, and the Laugh Floor, had lunch around 1 in the Tomorrowland counter service restaurant, and since it was getting moderately crowded [the wait times were like a half hour now], we then took a monorail to Epcot. We did literally everything we wanted to do except Adventureland all before lunch. And Magic Kingdom had magic hours that night, so we figured we'd come back later and do Adventureland then.
We got to Epcot around 2:30 after eating lunch and taking the monorails. The monorail trip took about 45 minutes between waiting for monorails and the trip itself which had a pause while we waited to enter the station. But we were in a very relaxed mood since we'd already gotten a days worth out of MK. Once at Epcot, all the major attractions had long lines and no fastpasses. So we did many other things that had absolutely no lines and we now had more time for the major attractions and World Showcase when we visited Epcot later in the week. We walked on to Spaceship Earth, Living with the Land, Nemo, and Captain EO. We took pictures with characters and had dinner in The Land's Restaurant. By now it was 7, so we headed back to MK. This time the monorail trip only took about a half hour.
MK closed at 8, but the magic hours kept it open until 11. We went on Pirates, then discovered that although Jungle Cruise was listed as being open during magic hours it was actually closed. So we did Big Thunder, Space Mountain, and Mansion again, and hit it's a small world since we had skipped it earlier due to an unbearable 20 minute wait [we walked on to everything that day, including Peter Pan].
Overall, there were no crowds [I actually took pictures of walkways with no people in them], minimal lines, and we did all we wanted to do. As for food, lunch was good, it was counter service after all so it's not gourmet but it was a good amount of food for the money. The teenagers each got a side of chicken noodle soup and split a french fry side and it was enough to last til dinner. Dinner in the Land was not very much food for the prices we paid at the counter service place. But the entire trip we got ice water with our food instead of sodas and that saved us a bundle.
On our last trip we didn't get parkhoppers, and wouldn't have used them. But already on the first day we had hopped parks and it wasn't as difficult as we had thought it would be. And the time needed to switch wasn't a big deal since there were no crowds. I will probably get park hoppers every time now.
Although it was 11:30 when we got back to our hotel, we were up and ready to leave at 7:30 for Animal Kingdom the next day.
Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.
From Nick MarkhamSounds like a good day at MK, but I am still not sure how a bus ride to MK could take 25 minutes or a monorail ride to EPCOT nearly an hour. But that was great you didnt encounter crowds, something very rare to do at Magic Kingdom!
Posted February 12, 2011 at 12:33 PM
From Victoria JurkowskiFor the bus ride, its quite a trek from Pop Century to MK, plus the bus got cut off and missed an exit or something. And we got stuck on the monorail for awhile due to an issue in the station we were pulling in to.
Posted February 12, 2011 at 8:32 PM
From Anthony MurphySounds like you had a good attitude and "rolled with the punches" of attractions not being open!
Posted February 13, 2011 at 8:20 AM
From Victoria JurkowskiYeah, last time we went to wdw we went on it during magic hours and it was better than during the day, but when we got there it was roped off and there was a skipper outside saying they were closed. It was pretty disappointing but we just got a pineapple whip and headed the Thunder.
Posted February 13, 2011 at 12:02 PM
From Brian EmeryThanks for posting..
Posted February 14, 2011 at 9:59 AM
I enjoyed this as I was “Working”.
This discussion has been archived, and is not accepting additional responses.
Plan your theme park vacation with our readers' travel guides:
Top U.S. Theme Parks
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Other Top International Parks
Readers' Top Themed Rides
Top Roller Coasters
Top Theme Park Shows
Features, News and Advice
2013 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May
2012 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2011 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2010 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2009 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2008 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2007 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2006 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2005 Blog PostsDec.
2004-2005Staff column archive