Looking for the best Magic Kingdom itinerary? – Then you’ve come to the right place.
Despite being based in the UK we’ve visited the Walt Disney World resort more than five times in the past three years alone – and we don’t plan to stop any time soon!
All our trips start with one day at the Magic Kingdom. It’s our Walt Disney World tradition, and it’s my all-time favourite park!
Despite only visiting the Magic Kingdom with kids once – when we got married in Orlando in 2019. This Magic Kingdom itinerary is suitable for the entire family.
However, knowing that each family is entirely different, we’ll be sure to note height requirements and suitabilities for each of the rides we cover so you can decide if it’s right for you.
If you only have one day at Magic Kingdom then this itinerary is perfect. However, if you’re planning a longer vacation to the Walt Disney World resort, consider splitting the morning and the afternoon segments up to allow you to recover.
As to cover everything, we’re going to be arriving at Walt Disney World around 8 am and not leaving until around 10 pm. Walking more than 7 miles, often in the sweltering heat.
Pro Tip: Be sure that alongside planning your Magic Kingdom one day itinerary you also plan what you’re going to wear.
There’s nothing worse than walking 7+ miles in 35-degree heat in clothes that are heavy, restrictive or don’t protect you from the sun.
For this reason, we’ve created a dedicated Disney packing list to help you.
Speaking of covering everything… Let’s talk fast passes.
If you’re staying on-site at one of the incredible Walt Disney World Resort Hotels (we call Old Key West home) then you’ll be able to book fast-passes 60 days in advance.
If you’re staying off-site during your Walt Disney World vacation then you’ll be able to book your fast passes 30 days in advance.
I recommend reading this itinerary, alongside our Magic Kingdom Fast Pass article to ensure you have a plan for the fast passes that are most suitable for you and your family.
Don’t forget to have a couple of back-ups and second choices too just in case your first choice(s) are taken.
I’d then set a reminder so you can book the fast passes as soon as they are released.
This maximises the chances of you getting fast passes for the rides you want, and minimises the amount of time you’ll spend queueing.
The same goes for planning meals. Table service restaurants can be booked up to 120 days in advance, with the most popular Magic Kingdom restaurants selling out very quickly.
We have included a number of suggestions of where to eat throughout this article, and we’ll be sure to remind you if we think it’s something you should book far in advance to help you avoid disappointment.
Table of Contents
Magic Kingdom Itinerary
If you struggle to get your Magic Kingdom fast passes, then I’d suggest heading to Magic Kingdom for rope drop.
If you’re staying off-site then you’ll want to arrive at the ticket and transportation centre (TTC) for around 8 am.
It’ll take around one hour to park your car, and head over on either the ferry or the monorail to the entrance of Magic Kingdom.
Pro Tip: If you’re staying at one of the Walt Disney World Resorts then you’ll be dropped off at the entrance of Magic Kingdom and want to head straight to the next part of our itinerary.
It’s an ongoing debate as to the ‘right way’ to get to Magic Kingdom from the TTC.
If you’ve been to the Magic Kingdom before you’ll know which one you prefer, however, if this is your first visit to Magic Kingdom we’d suggest the ferry.
The ferries at Magic Kingdom typically begin operating around 30-minutes prior to the parks opening time.
While there’s no set schedule for the ferry, one typically arrives and leaves the TTC and Magic Kingdom every 15 to 20 minutes.
The journey across the manmade lake between the two locations takes around eight minutes to complete.
From which you’ll pass numerous Walt Disney World resorts including the Grand Floridian and Polynesian.
Ferries have limited bench seating, so during peak hours (until around 11 am from the TTC to Magic Kingdom and from around 8 pm from Magic Kingdom to TTC you may find you have to stand)
The ferry boats don’t run during adverse weather conditions. Should this occur cast members will inform you and redirect you to the monorail.
Arrive At Magic Kingdom
Depending on the time of year you’re visiting and the crowds travelling between the TTC and Magic Kingdom you should arrive at the entrance to the park somewhere between 9 am and 10 am.
From here you’ll need to go through security (the same format as back at the TTC) and then be required to scan your ticket or Magic Band to access the park.
Pro Tip: If you need to collect tickets from Guest Relations I’d estimate approximately 30 minutes to this section of your day.
Main Street USA & Breakfast / Coffee!
Main Street USA is the main strip that runs between the entrance of Magic Kingdom and the castle. As you enter the park you’ll go under the Main Street USA train station.
From here you can board a steam train which runs along the Walt Disney World Rail Road stopping at multiple points across the park for passengers to embark and disembark throughout the day.
As you face the castle, you’ll find Guest Relations which is located inside the City Hall to the left.
Here you’ll find specially-trained cast members who can help you with just about any problem you might have while in the Magic Kingdom park including;
Making reservations for table service dining and fast passes.
Fixing problems, you might be having with Magic Bands or my Disney Experience
Collecting maps for the park in languages including; English, German, Japanese, Spanish and Portuguese.
You’ll also be able to collect a complimentary attraction translation device should this be required.
At the Guest Relations at Magic Kingdom, you’ll also be able to pick up buttons to help you share that you’re celebrating a special event such as a Birthday, Engagement or Wedding.
On your right is the Town Square Theatre, this is the only meet and greet location for Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse at Magic Kingdom.
Reservations for this meet and greet are available to reserve in advance with a Fast Pass.
However, unless you simply have to meet Mickey and Minnie at the Magic Kingdom on that day – for example, you are not re-visiting Magic Kingdom throughout your vacation, and really want to see them in their Magic Kingdom attire (they wear different outfits at the other locations in which you’ll see them such as Safari attire at Animal Kingdom).
Then I’d suggest trying to book this Fast Pass as your rotational Fast Pass which is available once you’ve used your three Fast Passes for the day.
Inside Town Square Theatre is also the only place you can meet Tinkerbelle in all of Walt Disney World.
Main Street USA is the most extensive shopping area at Magic Kingdom filled with multiple shops.
The Emporium – Located on the left-hand side as you face the castle this store runs along the entire strip of Main Street USA and has been designed to reflect a turn of the century general store.
Different rooms focus on different types of merchandise including clothing, cuddly toys, pins etc.
Crystal Arts – This crystal shop sells incredibly ornate crystal decorations that range from around $12 right up to $10,000.
It’s been making the parents of children and clumsy people nervous since it’s opening – fun fact, we’re actually too scared to go in there for risk of breaking something!
Uptown Jewellers – The perfect place to purchase Disney inspired jewellery including earrings, charms, watches etc.
Main Street USA is also home to Starbucks, the perfect place to grab a coffee if you’re still recovering from jetlag or had a really early start.
There’s usually quite a queue, so be prepared to wait around 15 or 20 minutes.
Outside by the Plaza Ice Cream Parlour, you’ll find some seating under parasols – it’s the perfect place to hide from the Florida sun to wait for Mickey and his friends to perform or simply take photos of the castle.
Opposite towards the other side of Main Street, you’ll find Casey’s Corner. This quick-service restaurant has seating both inside and outside and is the perfect place to pick up a hot dog when arriving at Magic Kingdom over lunchtime.
This is also the area in which you’re going to want to capture photos with the backdrop of the iconic Walt Disney World castle. If you have the Memory Maker then you’ll find around eight cast members on this strip to take your photo.
Pro Tip: Cast Members who are taking photos along Main Street are also more than willing to take photos on your phone or camera should you not have the Memory Maker package.
At both 10 am and 11.30 am you’ll find entertainment from Mickey and his friends outside the castle. These performances are the same, so you only need to see one of the two showings.
During our most recent visit to Magic Kingdom the show was Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire. You can see the entertainment schedule to find out more about the show during your visit to Magic Kingdom.
Following Mickey’s and friend’s fantastic performance outside the castle we were able to enjoy the Move It! Shake It! Dance Party!
Again, these performances are subject to change so be sure to view the entertainment schedule to find out if there’s a performance around 15 minutes after the previous castle front entertainment and additional details.
Tomorrowland was origionally designed to portray the future. Of course, the problem with creating futuristic views is that they frequently need updating.
Therefore in the 1990’s Disney decided to slightly modify it’s perception of Tomorrowland and instead depict the future as described by the sci-fi writers from the 1920’s.
Today, Tomorrowland shows us the future that never was…
One of the first attractions you’ll see is the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor, located on your right. These show every 30 minutes or so and last around 15 minutes. Due to the size of the theatre, you’ll often find there’s little or no standby queue and you’ll be able to see the next performance.
This is my favourite show in Magic Kingdom, it features one of the main characters of the Monsters Inc franchise Mike Wazowski. With Monstropolis now running on laughs instead of scares, he and some of his friends will aim to make you laugh to fill up the…
This is an interactive audience participation performance
An after a number of visits to the show, we were so pleased to find that my brother Niall had been chosen as ‘That Guy.
As a result, he got a super cool sticker which was a great talking (or laughing point) with cast members throughout the day.
Our first ride at Magic Kingdom is Buzz Lightyears Space Ranger Spin suitable for the whole family and has no height restriction.
The idea of the ride is that you’ll go around in a spacecraft made up of two or three passengers (three to a cart is usually if it’s two adults and a child).
Using the blasters in the spacecraft cart you’ll shoot targets and score enough points to allow Buzz to defeat the evil Zurg!
You get to see your scores on the cart as you ride around the track, which makes this a super competitive game for families and friends.
However, the ultimate ‘win’ is getting the maximum score of 999,999 – here are some tips on how to achieve this!
Next, it’s to the iconic Space Mountain. You need to be at least 1.12 metres tall to go on this ride, being one of the most popular rides in Magic Kingdom standby wait times are often in excess of 60 minutes. Making this an ideal candidate for a Fast Pass.
Pro Tip: If you’re responsible teens who don’t have a Fast Pass for Space Mountain but want to ride this they could skip Monsters Inc Laugh Floor & Buzz Light Years Space Ranger Spin.
These two rides wait times should line up somewhat depending on the crowd levels during your trip.
Therefore allowing you to ‘meet up’ again afterwards (as they are within 30m of each other). This stratergy isn’t for everyone but it’s certainly an option.
While your kids might be tall enough to ride Space Mountain, it doesn’t mean they will enjoy it. We were all so pleased to find Frankie, aged 7 was tall enough to ride.
However, the seating format made him more scared as he couldn’t hold our hand, and he, therefore, cried the entire time. He loved Hollywood Tower of Terror over at Hollywood Studios though.
Unless the heat is overwhelming (and you fancy a sit down in an airconditioned area for 20 minutes or so) I’d probably advise going on The Carousel of Progress.
The attraction is based around a slowing rotating theatre with audio-animatronics which was first opened in 1975. The show demonstrates how electricity has changed between the 1900s and the 21st century.
Although the scripts not been updated for around 25 years, and talks about CD’s as being modern which might be a little confusing to your kids.
Other rides in Tomorrow Land that you may want to plan into your itinerary include;
Astro Orbiter – Built-in 1974 the Astro Orbiter takes you spinning over Magic Kingdom. You’ll sit inside rockets, with real controls in which you’ll be able to move higher or lower as you desire.
Tomorrowland Speedway – These mini gas-powered sports cars are often high on the kid’s to-do list when visiting Magic Kingdom.
Here you’ll drive cars up to 7mph around a 0.6km track. Children need to be 1.37m to drive alone and 0.81m to ride with an adult.
Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover – Low on most to-do lists when visiting Tomorrowland is the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover.
Head out in a cart on a linear induction (magnetic) track and take a leisurely one-mile tour of Tomorrowland. There are no fast passes for this ride, however, you’ll rarely find a queue due to its constant loading system.
For a bite to eat in Tomorrowland head to the quick service location Cosmic Ray’s where you can sit and eat while being performed to by Sonny Eclipse – a super cool animatronic Astro Organ player, complete with space angel backing singers.
Lunch In Fantasy Land
Personally though, when it comes to food I’d recommend holding out for fantasy land – especially if you’re travelling with little princesses.
At this land is home to both the Be Our Guest table service restaurant and Cinderella’s Royal Table which is located inside the castle.
Pro Tip: If you’re looking at dining either of these restaurants I’d recommend booking as far in advance as you can (you can book restaurants at Walt Disney World up to 180 days in advance).
As Beauty and The Beast is set in France, the Be Our Guest restaurant serves an extensive range of French food including;
French Onion Soup
French Dip Sandwich
The full menu varies between Breakfast, Lunch (which are quick service on the Disney Dining Plan) and dinner (which is 2 table service credits on the Disney Dining Plan).
It’s broken into three separate dining halls and can seat up to 500 guests. With the chance to meet The Beast in his study, with a dinner reservation.
Cinderella’s Royal Table is a character dining experience in which you’ll meet an extensive array of Disney princesses who rotate doing meet and greets around the restaurant.
Located just opposite the Bibidi Bobodi Boutique in Magic Kingdom, this is a popular location for meals afterwards so the princesses can have fantastic character photos taken while still dressed up.
Much like the Be Our Guest restaurant, the food rotates depending on the meal so you’re best checking the menu in advance to see whether you’d prefer breakfast, lunch or dinner.
This restaurant is 2 Table Service credits on the Disney Dining Plan for both breakfast, lunch and dinner.
If a table service meal isn’t right for you, then head to the centre of Fantasy Land opposite Peter Pans Flight by the giant carousel and visit Pinocchio Village Haus for quick service meals.
The food here includes a range of pasta’s, salads and flatbreads and has extensive seating. Some of which even looks over the popular ride ‘It’s a small world’.
After lunch, it’s onto the rides in Fantasy Land.
If you’ve got toddlers then make the first stop after lunch the Big Top Circus. Rides here include; Dumbo The Flying Elephant which is suitable for all heights and ages and provides a small ariel view of the surrounding locations.
In Fantasy Land you’ll also find the iconic, It’s A Small World. The concept for the ride was designed for the 1964 New York World’s Fair before finding a permanent home at Disneyland.
Due to its incredible popularity, the ride was also brought to Walt Disney World in 1971. Due to its nostalgia, you’ll find the wait times for this ride can vary significantly.
Pro Tip: We’ve personally found that in the evening (after around 7pm) it’s often a ‘walk-on’ ride due to the consistent rotating of the boats going around the track.
Just opposite ‘It’s A Small World’ you’ll find Peter Pans Flight which has been an attraction at Walt Disney World since it opened in 1971.
Personally, this isn’t a ride I would queue the often crazy standby wait times for… However, due to it’s historical importance to the Walt Disney World park it’s a popular choice with fans and can often have standby wait times in excess of one hour.
For fans of Winnie The Pooh and Friends be sure to check out The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh. This 2-minute long ride takes guests in a four seated honey pot vehicle on a journey of stories from ‘the silly old bear’.
Other things to do in Fantasyland include;
Fairytale Hall – Fantasyland is the best place to meet Disney Princesses. Here you’ll currently find Rapunzel, Tiana, Elena and Cinderella (check here for the latest characters at Fairytale Hall)
Prince Charming Regal Carrousel – Another ride which has been in existence since Magic Kingdom opened in 1971.
The ride lasts two minutes and isn’t available for a fast pass, however, you’ll probably find around a 20-minute standby queue which is down to the slow loading and unloading of the horses.
Under The Sea The Journey of Little Mermaid – Take a ride inside a clam with Ariel and friends both under the sea and above in this classic ride.
Pro Tip: Fast passes are available, and standby lines can vary dramatically.
However, this is one ride we’ve found that we’re able to get a fast-pass for on an evening once we’ve used our three fast passes for the day.
Enchanted Tales with Belle – This interactive show allows you to step through the magical mirror into the Beast’s library.
Alongside Belle and Lumiere guests play the part of characters in a magical fairytale.
With each performance holding around 100 guests, and the performance repeated constantly throughout the day standby queues are often around 20 minutes, fast passes are also available.
Mickey’s PhilharMagic – This 12 minute 4D Show took a whopping three years to complete.
While there are no fast passes available, this show is on a consistent loop so you’re unlikely to be waiting for more than 20 minutes.
However, in most cases, we’ve walked straight into the next showing, either way, it’s an attraction at Magic Kingdom we believe to be well worth the wait!
Liberty Square & The Festival Of Fantasy Parade
Hopefully, you’ll reach Liberty Square somewhere just after lunchtime. At which point the 3pm Festival of Fantasy Parade will be about to begin.
There are some fantastic viewing spots in Liberty Square from which you can see all your favourite characters as they go by on floats to The Festival of Fantasy song.
You’ll want to get into position around 15 minutes before the parade starts in order to get a good viewing location.
This parade isn’t to be missed if you’re on your only spending one day at Magic Kingdom or have never previously been to Walt Disney World.
Sections of the park are cordoned off during the parade so where you can try and get a space around 15 minutes prior to the parades start.
After the parade, it’s time to explore Liberty Square.
Designed to represent the colonial era of America, Liberty Square is smaller than the other lands at Magic Kingdom with just three attractions.
Haunted Mansion – My personal favourite of the three, this ride is based on the Eddie Murphey film of the same name. It’s got no height or age restrictions but due to the nature of the ride younger guests may find it a little too scary.
Hall of Presidents – This animatronic show features all 44 United States presidents and dictates the history of the United States. The show lasts 25 minutes so be sure to schedule it into your itinerary if it’s something you’re looking to do during your one day at Magic Kingdom.
Liberty Belle paddlewheel – An authentic replica of an old paddlewheel riverboat, Liberty Belle circles Tom Sawyer Island. The journey takes around 13 minutes to complete and holds around 450 guests across three floors.
If you’re looking for dining options in Liberty Square then be sure to check out Liberty Tree Tavern. This restaurant offers a range of traditional American classics and accepts the Disney Dining Plan.
Finally, be sure to stop at the best shop in all of Magic Kingdom (at least in our opinion) Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe. Where you can pick up Disney inspired Christmas decorations year-round.
Frontierland has been designed to portrary the 19th Century American Old West. Commonly known to be the home of cowboys, saloons and pioners.
This area of the park is home to two of the three Mountains at Magic Kingdom; Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
Suitable for those over 1.02m, I’d recommend going on Splash Mountain first as the Florida heat will dry you off quickly.
Splash Mountain is a log flume ride dedicated to the 1946 film Song Of The South. With loveable characters, catchy songs and super cute animatronics.
If you want to go on Splash Mountain I recommend making it one of your Fast Pass priorities as standby wait times often hover around the 120-minute mark.
Pro Tip: If you can’t get a fast pass for Splash Mountain then heading here at rope drop is a popular choice.
You can pick either Splash Mountain or Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road with them being next to each other.
You should be able to get on the first within 20 minutes or so and once you come off that ride the other should still have a wait time of under 60 minutes.
Both of which are significantly lower than you’ll find at other times during the day.
Just next to Splash Mountain you’ll find Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road which again is suitable for those taller than 1.02m.
Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road opened in 1980 after taking over from Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland and is based on a rebellious and protective mountain from the old American Gold Rush time.
Pro Tip: If you don’t fancy getting up super early for rope drop, and don’t have a fast pass for these popular rides one alternative is to visit Magic Kingdom for Extra Magic Hours.
If you’re after any food and drink while in Frontierland then the Liberty Tree Tavern is the place to go!
Here you’ll find…
Traveler’s Loaded Tavern Fries
Bacon Cheddar Cheeseburger
Along with a number of dishes including salads and other style burgers.
If big thrill rides aren’t your thing Tom Sawyer’s Island has an adventure just a log raft ride away.
Tom Sawyer’s Island opened in Walt Disney World in 1973 and was designed by Walt Disney himself.
Adventure Land & Dinner
Adventure Land is the final area of Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. At this point you’ll have done a full circle of the park.
Pro Tip: Of course, you can choose to start here and finish your day over in Tomorrowland if you prefer.
In which case you’ll want to work up through this Magic Kingdom itinerary instead of down as normal.
While it’s still light I recommend heading out on The Jungle Cruise…
If you’ve got little ones then The Magic Carpets of Aladdin is a must!
Be sure to look out for the spitting camel…
Then, there’s The Pirates of the Caribbean ride. This isn’t high on my list of favourite Disney films, so I’ve only been on this once when the standby wait time was just 10 minutes.
If you’re up to the challenge then be sure to climb the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse. There’s never a queue for this, and no Fast Passes
Certainly doing this early evening is prefered to morning / mid-day in the Florida heat.
Of course, there’s one final show we’d recommend bringing the whole family along to see and that’s the wonderful birds at the Enchanted Tiki Room.
Again, you’re unlikely to find much of a significant wait for a seat in the Enchanted Tiki Room.
However, it’s a classic, a much-needed break from the heat and a chance to change songs from “it’s a small world” which you’ve no doubt been singing in your head (or aloud) over and over again for four hours or so now…
For dinner, I recommend heading around to the Crystal Palace located just next to Casey’s Corner at the end of Main Street USA and on the corner by the entrance to Adventure land.
This character dining buffet location is the perfect place to meet Winnie The Pooh and friends while dining on an incredible range of foods such as; Jambalaya, Pesto Pasta, Salmon and BBQ Glazed Pork.
After dinner, it’s time to enjoy the Fireworks.
I haven’t put any video or photo footage here as I don’t want to spoil it for you, but believe us when we say “it’s incredible!”.
You’ll find people start getting into position for the fireworks at Magic Kingdom around 2 hours prior to the show at 9pm.
With the majority of Main Street USA up to the castle being cordoned off due to capacity with around 30 minutes to go.
Pro Tip: We recommend finding a spot for your family to watch the fireworks around 45 minutes to an hour prior to the show.
Just be sure to go to the toilet first, and bring along some drinks and snacks.
Once you leave you’re party in that giant crowd of people you’re very unlikely to find them again.
After the fireworks have ended the majority of people make a b-line for the exit. However, we recommend hanging back for an hour for two reasons;
The entrance to the park and the surrounding transport areas become incredibly crowded. It’s uncomfortable, it’s tiring, they’ll be crying, shouting etc.
Even if it’s not from anyone in your party… In fact, in our opinion, it’s probably the least magical part of the whole experience.
Pro Tip: With everyone else running for the exit you’ll find that the wait times on attractions drop significantly.
This can be a great chance to wrap up any rides you wanted to go on but didn’t get the chance.
For example, we wandered down Main Street USA around 45 minutes post the fireworks ending and found that the queue to meet Mickey & Minnie Mouse in their celebration outfits inside Town Square had dropped to just 15 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most frequently asked questions by the readers of our one day Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom itinerary;
Is Magic Kingdom The Same As Disney World?
Disney World is a resort which features four parks, two water parks, a number of hotels and more… Magic Kingdom was the first of the four parks to open in 1971.
Does Magic Kingdom Have Fireworks Every Night?
Yes, the Magic Kingdom fireworks are on every evening (see the time these take place on the entertainment schedule) and are set on the iconic backdrop of Cinderellas castle.
What Is The Scariest Ride At Magic Kingdom?
Reaching speeds of up to 45km in the dark, we believe the scariest ride at Magic Kingdom is Space Mountain.
Can You See All Of Magic Kingdom In One Day?
This is a tricky one, yes, you can. However, we don’t think you should. There’s a lot of ground to cover, and doing the entire park in one day means you’re likely to have to skip some of the attractions or spend upwards of 14 hours in the park – which is not a pleasurable experience IMO.
If you can, try and go for two days and split this itinerary into two – we’d recommend stopping at the back of Cinderella’s castle in Fantasyland after going on either Splash Mountain or Big Thunder Mountain (and using your final fast pass on one of these two rides).
Doing this Magic Kingdom itinerary over two days also means you’ll get two sets of fast passes so you’ll spend less time in-line.
What Should I Do First At Magic Kingdom?
The answer to this question depends on when you arrive.
If you arrive at rope drop, then head to the most popular rides that you don’t have a fast pass for.
Otherwise, I’d check the entertainment schedule. If you arrive within an hour of a parade or performance I’d get a seat for that.
If you don’t. Then simply start this itinerary and work your way around the park.