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Disney World Orlando and the Magic of Mickey Mouse

Disney World Magic Kingdom Cinderella's Castle

 

Where other theme parks may wow the crowds with big coasters and hair raising rides, Disney World Orlando Florida is made for the family and will amaze your senses with theme park perfection. Every effort is made; no expense is spared; each ‘cast member’ plays their part in making Disney the daddy of all theme parks.

Whilst most will start their Disney holiday in Magic Kingdom strolling down Main Street to the Fairy Castle skyline, whichever park you start in it’s the attention to detail that first strikes. The buildings perfectly set to their period and location, staff, music and landscape all blending in brilliant harmony to create the perception that you really have been transported to another time or place.

Disney may not have the huge coasters of other parks (although Everest in Animal Kingdom and Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith in Disney MGM are very very good) but then that is perhaps not the point. The thrill is in the imagination and this is a spectacle that only Disney seems able to create well. From the parades and night time spectaculars to beautifully conceived and delivered rides and to the simplest detailing on a building façade, nothing is left to chance to ensure the experience is perfection.

Disney is a huge 47 sq miles encompassing the five theme parks, Downtown Disney, hotels, golf courses and other attractions. When entering the Disney site from the I4 it’s a 5 mile drive to the Magic Kingdom car parks, with then still a mile long boat or monorail ride to the entrance. The scale of it all can be a little daunting at first but with a few pointers and a little planning a trip to Disney is sure to beat all your expectations.

Disney is open all year round and whilst the sun is not so hot in the winter the days are generally drier and still warm by UK standards. Some times of the year do tend to be more crowded than others, the week running from Christmas to New Year is the busiest with January and late September the quietest.

Disney Theme Parks Indicative Crowd Levels

Disney World Florida Theme Park Busiest Days Chart

The weeks around Easter will can also be very busy but are not included in the chart above.

FastPass

The FastPass system operates through-out most of the Disney Parks, is free to use and with a little planning can make short work of queues on even the busiest of days.

The concept is easy enough; you reserve a place in the ride queue whilst you go off and enjoy other things, returning at your allotted time to skip to the front of the queue.

FastPass operates on the most popular rides with signage and displays outside the ride giving information on FastPass return times and regular wait times.

To use the FastPass service go to your chosen ride, check the return times, using the FastPass ticket machines insert each riders park entry ticket to receive it and a FastPass ticket back.

The FastPass ticket will indicate the time period in which to return and at what time your next FastPass ticket will become available.

FastPass Hints and Tips :-

PhotoPass

PhotoPass operates through-out the Disney parks and resort areas. Disney cast members will offer to take your photo and will in return give you a plastic card to allow you to view them later.

PhotoPass photographers can be found near all the major sites, around big rides and anywhere where the backdrop or excitement will make the perfect picture. They are even in the waterparks!

The PhotoPass plastic card not only acts as a record of that photo but can be passed to any other PhotoPass photographer and added to with their photos. There is no limit to the number of pictures you can have taken, or the number of PhotoPass plastic cards you can have.

Having your picture taken is free; having them printed has to be paid for.

You can view and purchase PhotoPass photos at various locations through-out the parks, or you can wait until you return home and view over the internet with any photos you purchase posted to you.

It’s worth taking advantage of and getting lots of pictures taken, who knows one of them may just capture the essence of a fantastic holiday and act as a reminder of special days.

Rider Swap

Some rides in the various Disney Theme parks offer a Rider Swap facility. This service allows one parent to go on the ride whilst the other looks after non riders, then on return they can swap without the need to queue all over again.