Ultimate Guide of the Best Magic Kingdom Rides

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Ever since I was a wide-eyed kid on my first trip to Magic Kingdom over 25 years ago, the park has held a special place in my heart. Each visit has brought new discoveries, from classic dark rides to heart-pounding coasters. Now, as a seasoned Disney fan, I’m thrilled to share my ultimate review of the best Magic Kingdom rides!

This isn’t your typical “top 10” list. I’ve carefully curated a selection that blends timeless favorites that have brought me joy for years with some of the park’s newest additions, like the high-tech marvel, Tron Lightcycle Run. Whether you’re a nostalgic Disney buff or a first-timer seeking unforgettable experiences, this guide will help you navigate thrilling coasters, explore whimsical tales, and discover hidden gems. So, grab your Mickey ears and get ready to create your perfect Magic Kingdom itinerary – an adventure awaits!

Magic Kingdom: Where Fairytales Come Alive – Fun Facts and Highlights

  • Secret Passages: The park is built on top of a complex network of tunnels called “utilidors.” These hidden passageways allow cast members to discreetly move around the park, keeping the magic alive for guests.
  • Subliminal Scents: The iconic smell of freshly baked cookies on Main Street, U.S.A., isn’t just from nearby shops. It’s a carefully crafted scent pumped in to create a warm and inviting atmosphere.
  • Forced Perspective Magic: Cinderella Castle looks even grander in person thanks to a clever trick. The building is built with a slightly wider base that tapers towards the top, creating the illusion of an even taller structure.
  • Sneaky Mickeys: Hidden Mickeys (silhouettes of Mickey Mouse) are a fun treasure hunt throughout the park. Keep an eye out for them in ride queues, decorations, and even the ground!
  • Small But Mighty: Despite being the smallest park at Disney World, Magic Kingdom boasts the highest attendance. It’s a masterclass in space optimization and immersive experiences.
  • Cleanliness Champions: You might not notice them, but there’s a whole system in place to keep Magic Kingdom spotless. Trash cans are strategically placed no more than 30 steps apart, and a complex network of tubes whisks trash away underground.
  • Not-So-Secret Fireworks: Did you know Disney is the world’s largest consumer of fireworks? Their nightly firework displays are legendary, so be sure to plan your visit around one!
  • A Suite fit for Royalty: Believe it or not, there’s a secret suite hidden within Cinderella Castle. While not available to the public, it’s rumored to be used for special events or celebrity guests.
  • Most visited Theme Park in the World: Despite being the smallest park at Disney World, Magic Kingdom boasts the highest attendance in the world.
  • Historically Accurate (Almost): Each land in Magic Kingdom is meticulously themed. In Liberty Square, however, you won’t find any bathrooms – that’s because it’s themed after the 1700s when such amenities weren’t as common!

These are just a few of the many interesting facts and highlights that make Magic Kingdom a truly magical place. So next time you visit, keep these in mind and see the park in a whole new light!

Curating Your Magic Kingdom Adventure: Top Picks for Every Taste

Best Magic kingdom Rides

This guide is here to help! We’ve compiled a list of 10 of the best Magic Kingdom rides based on a blend of personal experience and guest reviews. This way, you can prioritize your must-dos and create an unforgettable itinerary.

Remember, every adventurer is unique! While these rides consistently rank high in popularity, the “best” is ultimately subjective. This list is a jumping-off point, so be sure to explore attractions that spark your own sense of wonder. Let’s dive in and discover the magic that awaits! So let’s Start.

1.Space Mountain

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

A true Disney World icon, Space Mountain isn’t just thrilling, it’s a piece of park history. Debuting in 1975, it holds the title of the world’s first completely enclosed steel coaster, paving the way for modern thrill rides. This high-speed space adventure plunges you into darkness, with only streaking lights and cosmic whooshes to guide you. The suspense builds as you hurtle through a simulated space mission, never quite sure what’s around the next bend. But fear not, even though it reaches 183 feet tall, Space Mountain boasts two tracks to keep the lines moving! This innovative classic, constantly updated with modern effects, is a must-do for any thrill seeker. Bonus fact: during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, the lights go out completely, transforming Space Mountain into a spooky adventure for a whole new level of chills!

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

 There are two main requirements to ride Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom:

  1. Height Requirement: Guests must be at least 44 inches (112 cm) tall to ride.
  2. Health and Safety: Space Mountain is a thrilling ride with darkness, sudden drops, and sharp turns. For safety reasons, it’s recommended that guests be in good health and free from any conditions that could be aggravated by the ride, such as high blood pressure, heart problems, back or neck issues, or motion sickness. Additionally, expectant mothers are advised not to ride.

2) Big Thunder Mountain Railroad:

Magic Kingdom Ride

This classic Magic Kingdom ride isn’t just thrilling, it’s a trip through a bygone era. Inspired by the American wild west and the gold rush, you’ll careen through a rickety mine on a runaway train, dodging geysers, dynamite blasts, and narrow escapes. While not a high-speed coaster, Big Thunder Mountain offers a delightful mix of moderate drops, sharp turns, and unexpected surprises, making it perfect for a wider range of ages (height requirement applies).

The true magic lies in the details. Keep an eye out for the hilarious cast of Audio-Animatronic critters and miners who bring the Wild West to life. You might even spot a long-john clad resident casually floating through a flood in his bathtub! Fun fact: the entire mountain isn’t actually rock! It’s a clever feat of Imagineering, constructed from steel, mud, and paint to create a realistic illusion.

Big Thunder Mountain’s popularity is international, with versions in Disneyland, Tokyo Disneyland, and Disneyland Paris. Here’s a bizarre bonus fact: rumor has it riding in the back of the train (with a 64% success rate!) might even help pass kidney stones! While we can’t vouch for its medical efficacy, a thrilling ride on Big Thunder Mountain is sure to leave you grinning from ear to ear.Here are the general requirements to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Magic Kingdom:

Magic Kingdom Rides

Here are the general requirements to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Magic Kingdom:

  1. Height Requirement: Riders must be at least 40 inches (102 cm) tall to experience the ride. This ensures everyone can be safely secured in the train cars and enjoy the ride without any safety concerns.
  2. Health and Safety: While not as intense as Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad still involves some drops, bumps, and sharp turns. Riders should be in good health and free from any conditions that could be aggravated by the ride, such as:
    • Back problems
    • Neck issues
    • Motion sickness

3) Tron Lightcycle Run:

Tron Lightcycle Run at Magic Kingdom isn’t your average coaster. Launched in 2023, this high-tech marvel throws you into the neon-lit world of Tron. Straddle a sleek Lightcycle motorbike and prepare to race alongside the film’s characters at speeds of 0 to 59 mph in seconds – it might just be the fastest ride in Magic Kingdom yet!

Hold on tight as you navigate a thrilling course filled with vibrant lights, digital effects, and a pulsing soundtrack that throws you headfirst into the Tron universe. While there are no loops or inversions, the high speeds, tight turns, and unique riding position create an unforgettable experience.

Here’s the kicker: Tron Lightcycle Run boasts a first-of-its-kind ride system with individual Lightcycle vehicles gliding along a magnetic track. It’s a marvel of engineering and a must-try for any thrill seeker.

Bonus Tip: Be prepared to store loose articles in lockers before boarding – Tron Lightcycle Run prioritizes safety! While there’s a compartment for phones and sunglasses, everything else needs to be secured. With its immense popularity, paying the Individual Lightning Lane to Ride Tron through the My Disney Experience app might be necessary to avoid long lines, prices vary depending on the season you go Magic Kingdom. So, are you ready to suit up and join the race? Tron Lightcycle Run awaits!

Magic Kingdom Rides

There are two main requirements to ride Tron Lightcycle Run at Magic Kingdom:

  1. Height Requirement: Riders must be at least 48 inches (122 cm) tall to experience the high-speed thrills of the Tron universe. This ensures everyone can be safely secured in the Lightcycle vehicles and have an enjoyable ride.
  2. Health and Safety: Similar to Space Mountain, Tron Lightcycle Run involves intense elements. Riders should be in good health and free from any conditions that could be aggravated by the ride, such as:
    • Back problems
    • Neck issues
    • Motion sickness

4) Seven Dwarfs Mine Train:

Magic Kingdom Rides

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train packs a punch of fun for all ages! This whimsical coaster offers a delightful mix of gentle climbs, playful dips, and rocking sections that are sure to bring smiles. But be prepared, it’s also one of Magic Kingdom’s most popular rides, often boasting the longest wait times in the park.

Here’s why it’s worth the wait (or the strategic planning): The mine cars playfully swing from side to side as you navigate the track, adding a unique layer of excitement. Plus, the meticulously themed queue and ride immerse you in Snow White’s world, with hidden Mickeys, sparkling gemstones, and even a glimpse of Sleepy napping on the job! The real magic lies in the details – from the intricately designed mine cars to a secret room featuring characters from a former attraction.

Insider Tip: Wait times can be brutal. Consider purchasing an Individual Lightning Lane for this ride, especially if you’re traveling with a limited amount of time. Spending all day in line just isn’t worth it for this delightful adventure especially when you have to make the most on your day visiting Magic Kingdom.

There are two main requirements to ride Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Magic Kingdom:

  1. Height Requirement: Riders must be at least 38 inches (97 cm) tall to experience the swinging fun of the mine train. This ensures everyone can be safely secured in the ride vehicles and enjoy the ride without any safety concerns.
  2. Health and Safety: While not as intense as Space Mountain or Tron Lightcycle Run, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train still involves some gentle climbs, dips, and rocking sections. Riders should be in good health and free from any conditions that could be aggravated by the ride, such as:
    • Motion sickness
    • Back problems
    • Neck issues

5) The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh:

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Step into a storybook at The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, nestled right in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom! This whimsical ride whisks you through the Hundred Acre Wood in your very own honey pot. Lush landscapes, iconic landmarks like Pooh’s house, and familiar songs bring A.A. Milne’s world to life.

Sing along with Piglet as he braves the blustery day, bounce with Tigger during a playful hide-and-seek, and even encounter Heffalumps and Woozles in a dream sequence. Perfect for all ages, this gentle ride offers a relaxing escape and a chance to meet the entire Pooh crew in Fantasyland.

Keep an eye out for hidden gems! You might spot Pooh reaching for honey, Eeyore under a gloomy cloud, or even a secret tribute to Mr. Toad, the ride’s predecessor. For a touch of nostalgia, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh evokes childhood wonder with its classic animation and iconic tunes. So, grab your honey jar and join the fun – a delightful adventure awaits in Fantasyland!

6) Tomorrowland Transit Authority Peoplemover:

MAgic Kingdom Rides

Don’t underestimate the magic of the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover in Magic Kingdom! This slow-moving ride might not be a top-tier (E-Ticket) attraction, but it’s one of my favorites. Here’s why:

Imagine soaring above the bustling crowds, getting a unique aerial view of Tomorrowland’s iconic landmarks like Space Mountain and Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. The PeopleMover, originally opened in 1975, offers a glimpse into a “retro-future” that’s charmingly nostalgic.

It’s the perfect escape from the park’s hustle and bustle. Kick back, enjoy the breeze, and soak in the sights and sounds. Young children and anyone seeking a relaxing break will especially appreciate the gentle pace.

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Keep your eyes peeled for Hidden Mickeys cleverly disguised throughout the ride, adding a fun treasure hunt element. The narration by “Ronan 5” and the upbeat music enhance the whimsical atmosphere. While the technology might seem dated, the PeopleMover remains a testament to 1970s engineering with its silent and efficient linear induction motor system.

So, ditch the long lines and take a leisurely cruise above the crowds. The PeopleMover might not be a thrill ride, but it’s a guaranteed way to unwind and experience a different side of Tomorrowland.

7.The Haunted Mansion: My All-Time Spooktacular Favorite

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

The Haunted Mansion in Magic Kingdom isn’t just a ride, it’s an experience! This creepy Victorian mansion, rumored to house 999 happy haunts, is my all-time favorite Disney Parks attraction. From the playful hitchhiking ghosts to the singing barbers and the ballroom full of spectral revelers, there’s a delightful mix of spooky fun around every corner.

The chills and giggles begin even before you enter. The stretching room uses clever illusions to make you feel like you’re shrinking as the walls move in – a classic and slightly spooky way to kick off the adventure. Then, you board your Doom Buggy and embark on a ride through a graveyard, a ghostly attic, and even a hitchhiking ghost’s attempt to join your journey (don’t worry, they’re more playful than scary!).

The best part? No two rides are exactly alike! The Doom Buggy track system means each trip offers a slightly different spooky encounter. It’s a detail that keeps me coming back for more, even if I’ve ridden it a thousand times.

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

And for those visiting with little ones, fear not! The Haunted Mansion is more whimsical than truly frightening. It’s a perfect blend of spooky sights and sounds that will have them giggling, not screaming. So, come one, come all – The Haunted Mansion awaits to whisk you away on a hauntingly happy adventure!

8.Get Ready for Laughter and a Roar-some Ride: The Jungle Cruise Adventure

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

The Jungle Cruise in Magic Kingdom isn’t your typical boat ride – it’s a hilarious expedition brimming with puns, perilous (well, sort of) encounters, and a skipper’s dose of humor. Here’s why it’s a classic favorite:

Your adventure is guided by the quick-witted skippers who narrate the voyage. Their corny jokes, animal puns, and near-misses with wildlife create a fun and interactive experience – dad jokes highly encouraged! This humorous journey takes you along iconic rivers (almost!), encountering amazing audio-animatronic animals from the Nile to the Amazon.

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Beware the “backside of water,” a hidden danger your skipper will expertly navigate (hopefully!). Keep an eye out for other returning gags and hidden Mickeys throughout the ride. But the fun isn’t just jokes! Impressive special effects and detailed scenes bring the jungle to life, with erupting geysers and stampeding hippos adding thrills.

It’s a perfect blend of adventure and laughter for all ages. Recently updated with new scenes, figures, and of course, jokes, the Jungle Cruise retains its classic charm.

Bonus Fact: The skippers are improv masters! They adapt their jokes and commentary to the audience and current events, keeping every ride fresh and funny.

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

So, ready to set sail on a hilarious jungle adventure? The Jungle Cruise awaits! And during the holiday season, keep an eye out for the special Jingle Cruise overlay – a festive twist on this favorite ride! Just remember, keep those arms inside the boat… especially near the backside of water!

9. Pirates of the Caribbean:

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Prepare to be swept away on a swashbuckling adventure at Pirates of the Caribbean in Magic Kingdom. This iconic boat ride, a true piece of Disney history, has been thrilling guests since 1967 in Disneyland and then atMagic Kingdom when it opened in 1975, making it the last ride Walt Disney himself had a hand in creating.

Climb aboard your vessel and set sail for a world teeming with pirates! Lush foliage, clanging swords, and the salty spray of water create an immersive experience that transports you to a bygone era. You’ll find yourself living the pirate life, encountering scenes straight out of the movies: drunken pirates carousing in a bustling tavern, a fiery battle between a pirate ship and a Spanish fort, and even a glimpse of a hidden treasure cave.

The catchy shanty “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)” serves as the soundtrack to your adventure, perfectly capturing the freewheeling spirit of pirates. During Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, the ride takes a spooky turn! With the lights dimmed and only the iconic song playing, Pirates of the Caribbean transforms into a thrilling experience unlike any other.

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Keep an eye out for the ride’s many Audio-Animatronic characters who bring the world of pirates to life. From the notorious Captain Jack Sparrow (added in 2006) to a tipsy pirate crew and a skeletal prisoner pleading for mercy, the detailed figures boast hilarious antics and realistic movements.

While the ride is known for its immersive atmosphere, there’s also a touch of thrill included! A couple of exciting drops add a splash of excitement to the otherwise leisurely boat ride. Suitable for all ages, Pirates of the Caribbean offers a fun and memorable experience that will leave you wanting more.

The success of the Magic Kingdom’s Pirates of the Caribbean led to similar rides being installed in other Disney Parks worldwide, each with their own unique details and variations. 

10. Peter Pan’s Flight:

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Soar through the skies in Magic Kingdom’s Peter Pan’s Flight, a beloved dark ride. Board your pirate ship and fly alongside Peter, Wendy, and Tinker Bell.

Experience the thrill of flying over London at night, then descend into the sparkling world of Neverland. Lush jungles, mermaids, and iconic sights like Big Ben create an immersive story.

Classic animation adds a touch of nostalgia, making it a delight for all ages. Keep an eye out for hidden Mickeys on this whimsical adventure! This 1971 ride (also found in other Disney Parks) uses a suspended dark ride system. So, sprinkle on some pixie dust and get ready to fly to Neverland! (There is no height requirement for Peter Pan’s Flight.)

11.It’s a Small World:

“It’s a Small World” in Magic Kingdom isn’t just a ride, it’s a global phenomenon! This whimsical boat journey, a staple since Magic Kingdom’s opening in 1971, takes you on a colorful tour through various cultures.

Expect a sensory overload of vibrant scenes, catchy music (including the iconic “It’s a Small World” song, possibly the most played song ever!), and charming Audio-Animatronic figures. While not geographically perfect, it captures the spirit of different countries with music, animation, and familiar landmarks. Singing Dutch children, yodeling Alpine figures, and a kaleidoscope of colors create a delightful (and maybe slightly overwhelming) experience. Keep an eye out for hidden Mickeys for an extra layer of fun!

Originally introduced at the 1964 World’s Fair, this classic ride plays “It’s a Small World” about 1,200 times a day! Love it or hate it, it’s a guaranteed conversation starter and a Disney Parks must-do. So climb aboard and experience a global celebration of cultures (and maybe get that song stuck in your head for a while)!

New Attraction in Magic Kingdom Coming Soon: Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

Get ready to set sail on a musical adventure inspired by Disney’s beloved film “The Princess and the Frog”! Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, opening its doors at Magic Kingdom on June 28th, 2024, invites guests to join Tiana and Louis on a thrilling boat ride.

Join Tiana and Louis the alligator as they gear up for a splashy Mardi Gras celebration! This reimagined adventure utilizes the existing Splash Mountain structure, but with a whole new storyline, music, characters, and special effects. Prepare to be immersed in the vibrant culture of New Orleans with catchy tunes (including new music by Alan Menken!), dazzling scenes, and beloved characters from the film.

While the full experience is still under wraps, expect a fun and splashy ride with a 52.5-foot drop, perfect for guests over 40 inches tall. So, get ready to sing along, celebrate Mardi Gras, and experience the magic of Tiana’s Bayou Adventure! Just remember, this is a brand new ride, so check for wait times and Lightning Lane+ or Disney Genie+ options to maximize your park time. Magic Kingdom has something for everyone, and Tiana’s Bayou Adventure promises to be a delightful addition!

Final Thoughts of the Best Magic Kingdom Rides

Best Magic Kingdom Rides

The magical world of Magic Kingdom offers a dazzling array of rides for every thrill level and taste. From the spooky thrills of The Haunted Mansion to the soaring flight of Peter Pan’s Flight, and the global celebration of “it’s a small world,” these are just a taste of the unforgettable experiences that await.

While I’ve highlighted some of the most popular and beloved rides, remember, this is just a starting point! Magic Kingdom boasts a whole treasure trove of adventures waiting to be discovered. Consider your interests and the preferences of your family when charting your course through the park.

There are gentle boat rides, exhilarating coasters, classic dark rides, and character encounters – the perfect mix to create a magical day for everyone. So, grab your Mickey ears, let your imagination take flight, and explore everything Magic Kingdom has to offer. The best rides are the ones that create lasting memories for you and your loved ones!


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