Best day for epcot or animal kingdom?

Down to planning the last 2 days of our trip Sept 12-17th. The forums have been really helpful thus far so here I am again… trying to plan Saturday and Sunday out. The 2 parks left at that point are Epcot and Animal Kingdom. Traveling with kids age 3, 9, 14 and 15.

Epcot is open Saturday from 9am to 10pm, Animal Kingdom is open 8am for EMH until 8:30pm.

Epcot is open Saturda from 9am to 9pm and Animal Kingdom is open from 9am to 8pm.

We may be going to MNSSHP on Sunday evening. My original thought was to do Animal Kingdom half day, nap and then go to the party but I’d also really like to see Animal Kingdom at night. So we thought about making a night trip by leaving Epcot early Saturday.

I know there is alot to do at Epcot, but which such small kids, I think we could do most of what they would want to do by lunch time.

Would it be better to attend Animal Kingdom on Saturday and take advantage of the EMH and stay to see the forest that night? Maybe hop over to Epcot after since they are open later, then go back to Epcot Sunday morning with a break about 2 before the halloween party?

I am just not so sure about only having until lunch at Animal Kingdom with so much to see and do and I know we will need a nap before being out so late at the halloween party.

You are going a good week, so crowds should be pretty low regardless. The Crowd Calendar I trust most, however, puts Epcot as busier on that Saturday. This would make me pick Epcot for Sunday, and AK on Saturday. YMMV

I’d be concerned about such an early day and late night for your MNSSHP night for the 3 & 9 year olds.

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We will be taking an extended day break before the halloween party. I’d really like to do that halloween party and so do my kids; however, is it still worth it if we get there around 4 or 5 and leave at 10 or 10:30. We are a large family so it will cost $468 and it’s the night before we leave. We don’t leave until 6 on Monday so we can sleep in if we choose. I want to experience it but I dont want everyone to be miserable either.

I’ve been to a Christmas party and had a great time! Even DH who was reluctant to spend the $$ was convinced it was a great time worth the $$. I would say, try to stay until at least the fireworks are over. I don’t know if that is 9pm or 10 pm for the fireworks.

I would just do AK Saturday and Epcot Sunday and not the party. It is a lot to fit in in two days when you have not been to AK and Epcot yet on the trip. Especially in September heat. You are trading off missing things at AK and Epcot for the party and paying almost $500 for the privilege. We have been to three parties (two Halloween and we are doing a 3rd this September).

Now if I was going to the party I would absolutely not leave early as I would miss the less busy time. I would let my 3 year old sleep in a stroller. The last hour and 15 minutes (post fireworks) was about the only time we had to try and hit rides. The lines for popular characters are long and then there is the waiting for the parade and fireworks.

Another idea we had was to add a day of park tickets and do a park on our arrival day. The only bad thing about that is that we don’t arrive until 3:35 and then if you add a couple hours to get to the resort, it would be fairly late when we arrive at a park. Now MK does have EMH from 9-11pm that night; however, with such an early breakfast reservation the next day, we don’t want to go to bed so late. So instead of doing a park on arrive day, we decided to add the halloween party to the end. Two of our 4 park days, MK closes at 6 for the party.

We thought it would be best to just enjoy the hotel, swim, etc on arrival day. In our plan, would it be better to add a day of tickets and do a few hours at a park on our arrival day instead of doing the halloween party? It would definitely be cheaper. I think less than $100 to add a day.

Now that you tell me that you are going to MK on two party days I’ll give you my two cents on what I would do to make the party. I’d hate to see you miss fireworks at MK.

If you can hop I might leave MK around 2 on one of your MK days and go to Epcot for a few hours. Maybe not direct if tired. If you do 9:00-12/1 at Epcot on the Sunday you can probably get most of Epcot done ride wise that way. You either have to sacrifice rides or seeing all of world showcase but at least you get your party in with time for a nap. Then you can arrive at MK around 5/5:30 and get in line for one of the major characters if that appeals. There are guides on what to do at a party.

We never go to a park the day we arrive but that is just us. Many people do. If you have an early breakfast on day 1 why start tired? On our last 5 day trip I crammed almost everything in and the family was exhausted. It wasn’t 90s hot out either.

Hopefully others can give better advice. I am not a regular at Disney. I have only been five times and read way too much about maximizing my time there.

Definitely don’t want to miss Happily Ever After fireworks which is why Thursday will be our full day at MK. Friday morning we are doing MK EMH in the morning until lunch and then hopping to hollywood studios as we have a fantasmic dining plan that evening and there was a halloween party friday night at MK. I liked the idea of doing Epcot on Sunday, yes we would sacrifice seeing some of the world showcase but would probably disappoint myself more than my kids. We could also hop from AK to Epcot for a couple hours on Saturday evening if we wanted since Epcot is open late that night.

If you definitely want to do the MNSSHP, I would consider both AK and EP in one day and rest the day of the party so you get there as early as possible and stay for the fireworks. I made the mistake of going to a park the morning before a MVMCP and my kids had a really difficult time.