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Disney World in Disney World
ABOVE: Hollywood Blvd. at Disney World, in Orlando, FL

About the park

Disney World takes its name from Walt Disney's vision of an "Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow". The Park opened in October, 1982, and was Disney's first theme park not modeled after Disneyland in Califrnia.

Built to resemble a permanent World's Fair, Disney World is divided into two main sections: Discoveryland, featuring modern attractions focused on nature and science, and World Showcase, featuring pavilions from several countries.

The Park is located one mile southwest of the Disney World main entrance, approximately 30 miles south of Orlando, FL. You can visit Disney-Disney World by car, water taxi (from Disney resorts and theme parks) or use Disney bus transportation. The monorail system does connect this theme park.

Disney World Tickets: Ages 10+ $59.75, 3-9 $48.00
Hours: Summer months: Winter months:
Size: 135 acres
Parking: $7, Free for Disney Resort Guests
Address: Bear Island Road., Lake Buena Vista, FL 32819
Phone: (407) 824-4321

Park tips

Sunscreen and walking shoes are a must.
You must pass through a security checkpoint before entering.
ATM's are located at the Park entrance and the German pavilion.
Measure your child's height so you know which rides they can enjoy.
You can send email from Mission: SPACE and Imagination Pavilion.
Behind the scenes tours are available.
Bring your autograph book to Mickey Avenue.
Many Disney Cast Members speak more than one language. The flags on their nametags indicate which languages they speak.

Park layout

As you enter the Park be sure to take a park map. This will let you know the location of the attractions, park hours and what times certain attractions/shows are presented.


The Basic Layout of the Magic Kingdom is a central hub area (marked with Cinderella’s Castle) with seven “lands” surrounding the hub.
These lands are:
Main Street
Liberty Square
Mickey’s Toontown Fair
Main Street represents the ideal American town. It is filled with shops, food eateries, a railroad, an old-time cinema and a town square and is thought to be based on Walt Disney’s hometown of Marceline, Missouri.
TIP: Shops on Main Street become jammed at the end of the day, as people are exiting the park. The best time to shop is early in the afternoon to avoid crowds.
As you walk down Main Street you will find:
Welcome Center – on the right side of Main Street, as you enter the Magic Kingdom.
Town Square Expo Hall – acts as museum and camera supply shop.
Main Street Cinema – This old-fashioned, though totally air conditioned, movie house shows Mickey Mouse cartoons on a continuous loop. It is set up as a standing room only, but kids usually just sit down on the floor.
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Main Street Railroad – This is considered home base for the authentic 1928 steam engines that follow the track around the perimeter of the park. The ride is 1.5 miles, and it takes about 20 minutes to complete a round-trip run. The trains make stops in Frontierland, Toontown and at Main Street.
** If you are using a rental stroller you will need to leave the stroller at this station. You can pick it up again if you are making a round trip. If you are departing at another station you can pick up a new rental stroller at the other stations. If you are using your own stroller be prepared to fold it up before boarding the train.
Old Fashioned Transportation – free transportation from one end of Main Street to the other. Modes of transportation include horseless carriage, or trolley. These run for limited times during the day.
This land is accessible from Main Street if you stay to your left and cross over a small bridge. Listen for the sounds of Adventureland, including beating drums and tropical birds.
Pirates of the Caribbean – this ten minute boat ride is quite dark as it takes riders through scenes depicting pirates taking over a town. This attraction was originally opened in 1973, but was updated in the mid 1990’s to be more politically correct. Instead of scenes where pirates are chasing women, the updated version has the village women chasing the pirates away.
TIP: Watch the line queues as you enter the ride; most people tend to move to the right which may leave the left line shorter for you.
Jungle Cruise – this ten minute adventure takes you on a tour of Southeast Asia, the Nile Valley and an Amazon rainforest. Your boat captain spends a lot of time working in the corny jokes but it is a great family ride.
Swiss Family Treehouse – This attraction is based on the classic story of Swiss Family Robinson. This treehouse contains several levels and is set up to reveal all the comforts of home, furniture, quilts and an indoor plumbing system. This attraction requires a lot of climbing and may lead to a lot of complaining from younger children.

Tiki Room – The original attraction opened in 1963 with over 200 audio animatronic birds. The updated version debuted in 1998 and includes two birds from famous Disney animated features – Zazu (from the Lion King) and Iago (from Aladdin). This nine minute show contains over 200 birds, flowers and tiki statues that perform for you – a great family attraction.
Magic Carpets of Aladdin – 16 flying carpets take riders for a spin on this Dumbo-style attraction. Up to four guests can ride in each carpet. Watch out for those spitting camels!
TIP: The lever that allows the carpet to move up and down is located in the back seat of the carpet. If you child wants to man the control, have them sit in the rear as you board the ride.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – This four minute high speed thrill ride is one of the Magic Kingdom’s most popular attractions. The ride contains over 2700 feet of track and reaches a top speed of 33mph (faster than Space Mountain). You must be over 40 inches tall to ride and it is not recommended for pregnant women or for people with heart or back problems. FAST PASS is suggested on this ride.
Splash Mountain – This flume ride takes you on an eleven minute ride to the theme of the movie, Song of the South. With the last drop of 52 feet at a 45 degree angle, chances are you will get wet. You must be over 44 inches tall to ride and it is not recommended for pregnant women or for people with heart or back problems. FAST PASS is suggested on this ride.
TIP: For the wettest ride sit in the front row of the ride and sit up straight for the final drop.
Don’t forget to smile as you plunge on the final drop – as your picture is being taken!
Shooting Arcade – This area is made up of rifles with infrared bullets. You can shoot the rifles to hit targets that will create sound and visual effects. This area requires additional fees to play – and is not included in the park admission.
Country Bear Jamboree - This 17 minute show is hosted by life-sized audio animatronic bears that entertain you with their songs. Audiences will sing along, stomp their feet and clap their hands at this popular attraction. Note: this show changes to a Holiday version of the Country Bear Jamboree between Thanksgiving and New Years.
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Tom Sawyer Island – this island is part of the Magic Kingdom but is only accessible by taking a raft across the Rivers of America. The island is only open during daylight hours and contains bridges, and places to explore.
Goofy’s Country Dancin Jamboree – This 18 minute audience participation show is hosted by Goofy and his friends (usually Jessie, Woody and Bullseye from Toy Story 2). The show includes musical songs and country line dancing that involves the audience members.
Riverboat - Take a scenic ride on this steamboat around the Rivers of America. The 15 minute relaxing cruise takes you 1.5 miles on the “Liberty Belle”. This is one of the original attractions that has been part of the Magic Kingdom since 1971.
Hall of Presidents – This 23 minute presentation uses both a film and audio animatronics to present the history of the presidency of the United States. The “cast” includes all US Presidents from George Washington to the current president.
Haunted Mansion – This was one of the Magic Kingdom’s original attractions and it remains a favorite today. You begin the ride as a walk through into an old haunted mansion as you visit the library, where you witness the room stretching. You then ride through the rest of the attraction, in your two seat doom buggy. The ride is dark and offers some moderate scares – small children may look for the exit.
General Notes: this land is constantly evolving to keep up with the image of tomorrowland. Its biggest overhaul was done in 1996.
Stitch’s Great Escape – this attraction was recently changed from Extraterrorestrial Alien Encounter and is now more family friendly. After the pre-show, you will be seated in a circular area in a custom designed seat that will be part of the ride experience. As you view the presentation and Stitch does escape, he will seem to move around the room and act in typical Stitch fashion. This multi sensory experience had some scary elements including total darkness during some portions of the presentation. This attraction may not be suitable for young children.
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Time Keeper – this twenty minute tour through time features a 360 degree movie with Audio-Animatronic characters. This attraction is presented in a standing room only, so kids may complain about standing throughout this presentation.
Space Mountain - This roller coaster is one of the Magic Kingdom’s most popular attractions. It takes place in total darkness and provides high speed turns. Although the actual speed is only 28 miles per hour, the ride feels much faster and scarier to the rider.
The minimum height requirement is 44 inches and children under 7 must ride with an adult. It is not recommended for pregnant women or for people with heart or back problems.
Astro Orbiter – this attraction is perched high atop the Tomorrowland Transit Authority. This two minute ride takes you on a flight in rockets and gives you a great view from above of tomorrowland.
Carousel of Progress – this attraction is presented in a circular, moving theater. The presentation allows you to view a family in different decades to spotlight different advancements and achievements made through the years. The attraction uses audio-animatronics and as you pass through the years, the theater rotates around.
Tomorrowland Transit Authority – this 10 minute relaxing ride takes you around Tomorrowland in a slow moving (10mph) vehicle. The ride passes through the Buzz Lightyear attraction and Space Mountain.
Tomorrowland Indy Speedway - these sports cars run along a track as you or your child steer and work the pedal. Once you load into your vehicle you can maneuver around the track trying to steer into the turn. Although there are no brakes, you will find that removing your foot from the pedal slows down the speed of your car. The one lap trip takes approximately five minutes to complete. You must be at least 52 inches to drive the car by yourself.
Buzz Lightyear – this 4 ½ minute ride takes you into the world of Buzz Lightyear as he battles Emperor Zurg. As an honorary Space Ranger, you pilot your two person vehicle as you fire at targets throughout the ride. As you hit your targets you earn points that are displayed on a scoreboard inside your car. When the ride approaches the end you can check your score to see how you rank as a Space Ranger.
Cinderella’s Golden Carrousel – this attraction boasts xxx horses, so even with a long line, your wait is usually minimal. This carrousel was originally used in Olympic Park in New Jersey back in 1917.
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Fairy Tale Garden – this small theatre area is located next to Cinderella’s Castle. Several times during the day, Belle from Beauty and the Beast performs a story in this outdoor stage area. Seating is very limited and usually fills up quickly. If your child (or you) are big Belle fans, this is the best way to see the Princess.
Mickey’s Philharmagic – this attraction debuted in the Fall of 2003 and is quickly becoming a Fantasyland favorite. The presentation is a 3D experience where you watch the show on a 150 foot wide screen. Special effects are included to make you experience the show from every seat in the theatre.
It’s A Small World – This slow moving, 10 minute boat ride was originally created for the New York’s World Fair (1964-1965). The attraction takes you passed hundred of dolls dressed in costumes that represent countries around the world. This is a wonderful family attraction that most kids want to experience over and over again.
Peter Pan’s Flight – This attraction makes you part of Peter Pan’s flight to Neverland as you leave the nursery and sail high above London as you travel to meet the Lost Boys, the Mermaids and even Captain Hook. Fastpass is available and recommended for this ride.
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh - This fun-loving attraction takes you on a tour through the Hundred Acres Woods. You will meet Pooh, Tigger, Piglet and Owl as you ride in your honey pot shaped vehicles. FastPass is available and recommended for this attraction.
Dumbo – This 16 car ride allows riders to fly with Dumbo and you can control your height of your flight with the lever inside the car. This two minute ride gives you a great view of the Fantasyland attractions.
TIP: Dumbo is a ride that children love and parents cringe at when they see how the long the line is (and how SLOW it moves). A good way to get two rides for one wait time is for a parent to enter the ride with the child and have the other parent count at least 32 people before entering the line alone. When the parent and child are riding, the other parent will be waiting to board on the next Dumbo flight. As the parent and child are exiting the ride, the parent can “hand off” the child to the waiting parent. This parent can now ride with the child – this works well for children that want to repeat this ride more than once.
Ariel’s Grotto – This area is tucked behind the Dumbo ride, and many people walk right by it without even realizing it. Refurbished in 2004, this area is hosted by the Little Mermaid herself as she greets visitors throughout the day. The line here is usually quite long, but there are areas for the children to climb on to keep them occupied.
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TIP: Given the close proximity to Dumbo a good tip is for a parent to take their child on Dumbo, while the other parent waits on line to see Ariel. That will save some waiting time to see Ariel.
Mad Tea Party - this attraction takes you for a spin as you ride in oversized tea cups. This ride is not for people with weak stomachs or who suffer from motion sickness.
Snow White’s Scary Adventures – this name of this attraction does contain the word scary for a reason. Although the ride is based on the movie, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, the Evil Queen makes sudden appearances during your three minute ride and has been known to frighten youngsters.
This area is found behind Fantasyland and is a short walk from the Mad Tea Party attraction. It can also be reached by riding the Walt Disney World Railroad.
The Barnstormer – this roller coaster is designed for children. The coaster car is made to look like a plane and it zips you along the track at a very quick speed. Guests must be at least 35 inches tall to ride.
Mickey’s Country House – this walk through attraction allows visitors to get a peek at Mickey’s country home. As you walk through the rooms you visit Mickey’s kitchen, game room, and bedroom. You can also exit the back of the house to see Mickey’s garden (check out those tomatoes).
Judge’s Tent – Just a few steps from Mickey’s House and Garden, you will enter he Judge’s tent. Here you will get to meet Mickey – he is here all day! There is usually quite a wait inside, but visitors are treated to Mickey cartoons as you wait.
Donald’s Boat – this attraction allows children to cool off as it includes fountains and other water features. If you do not wish for your children to become wet (actually soaked) steer clear of this area.
Minnie’s Country House – Explore Minnie’s bright pink home, as you check out her kitchen, her living room and even listens to her answering machine.
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Toontown Hall of Fame – Enter the big tent and find a huge souvenir shop and a place to meet your favorite Disney characters. There are usually three lines to meet different groups of characters. One line might be Disney Princesses, another Donald, Chip and Dale, and the third Winnie the Pooh and friends. Watch for the signs as you enter or you might wind up waiting nearly an hour before you realize you entered the wrong line.
TIP: The only restroom in Toontown can be found at Pete’s Garage. It can be found as you enter Toontown from Fantasyland.

Special attractions

Character Meetings – You will not find many individual characters in World Showcase. Occasionally you might stumble upon Snow White and the Seven Dwarves in Germany or Pooh & Tigger in the United Kingdom. The best way to meet the characters is to watch for a double decker bus that travels around World Showcase throughout the day.

Illuminations – This spectacular feature is presented nightly at Disney World, usually at the park’s closing time. You will see guests lining up for this show starting two hours before it starts. Any area around the lagoon can offer a good viewing location. Arrive an hour in advance to secure a comfortbale seat. A favorite spot is in front of the Italy pavilion - go over the little bridge and stand at the rail.


Around the World at Disney World Roll into the future of personal transportation when you hop aboard a
Segway Human Transporter on this outdoor tour. Cost: $80. Duration: 2 hours.

Behind The Seeds at Disney World unearth secrets of the green thumbs responsible for the famous Disney greenhouses at The Land. Cost: $12. Duration: 1 hour.

Dolphins in Depth
Meet the smartest residents of The Living Seas up close and personal as you wade in amongst them. Cost: $150. Duration: 3 hours.

Disney World DiveQuest
Dive into the SCUBA adventure of a lifetime in an underwater wonderland so captivating, it could only come from Disney. Cost: $140. Duration: 3 hours.

Gardens of the World
Nurture your earthy side as you learn the secrets behind the lush landscapes and gorgeous gardens of World Showcase. Cost: $59. Duration: 3 hours.

Hidden Treasures of World Showcase
enjoy an in-depth exploration of the peoples, places and cultures of World Showcase. Cost: $65. Duration: 3 hours.

The UnDISOVERed Future World Walk behind the scenes and learn the amazing story of The Park's design and creation. Cost: $49. Duration: 4 1/2 hours.

Seas Aqua Tour Immerse yourself in an awesome "behind-the-seas" adventure exploring The Living Seas aquarium. Bring your swimsuit. Cost: $100. Duration: 2 1/2 hours.

To schedule Disney tours call: 407-WDW-TOUR.

Signature Dining:

Bistro de Paris, Biergarten Restaurant, Coral Reef , Le Lellier, Les Chefs de France, Nine Dragins, Restaurant Marrakesh, Rose & Crown Dining Room, San Angel Inn, Teppanyaki Dining Room

Call (407) WDW-DINE 90 days in advance to make dining reservations.

Fast Food:

Boulangerie Patisserie, Electric Umbrella , Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe, Liberty Inn, La Cantina , Lotus Blossom Cafe, Tempura Kiku, Sommerfest, Sunshine Season Food Fair, Tangerine, Yakatori House

Orlando Weather:

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Disney World Vacations  

Wheelchairs and Electric Convenience Vehicle (ECV)
Rentals are available for a fee of $10 for a wheelchair (multiple day rentals are $8/day) and $35 for the ECV.

Strollers are available for rent at the front of the park for a charge of $10/day for a single and $18 for a double.

Disney vacations

The least crowded time to visit is from Labor Day to Thanksgiving and from the week after President's Day (mid-February) to the start of Spring Break (mid-March).

You can definitely make the most of your vacation by staying at one of the Disney World hotels. If you do, you will enjoy special benefits and Walt Disney World® quality and service.

But if you choose to stay at a hotel near Disney world, you can still visit all of the Disney properties to enjoy the atmosphere, have a meal, or shop. You may be charged for parking, but you can get validated for up to one hour of parking for each $10 you spend while you're there.

Some of the popular Disney resort hotels include:
Wilderness Lodge, Polynesian Resort, Disney World Hotel, and the Grand Floridian.

Disney sells MGM tickets on their website, but you can not print the tickets, meaning you must order early and have the tickets mailed to you.
You can also buy tickets through your local auto club, Disney Store or through a school or work activities office. Many offsite hotels also sell Disney passports at the front desk.

Whatever you do, buy tickets before you get to the park. No sense in wasting the first hour waiting in line at the ticket booth.

User reviews

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Company info:
Disney-Disney World
Walt Disney World Orlando, FL
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
(407) 560-7299
Web: www.disneyworld.disney.go.com
Grand Opening: October 1982
Employees: 3,200 cast members
Size: 300 acres

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