First attractions to see at Magic Kingdom?

I’m planning mainly morning visits to parks throughout our 2 week holiday and will probably tackle one half of the parks at a time to save my kids walking backwards and forwards too much.
However on our first full day I’m planning exploring our hotel and swimming, then heading to MK late afternoon and evening. I was thinking about doing 7DMT (to ease my boys into rides before we tackle Thunder Mountain etc another day) and maybe Pirates but I’m conscious of walking to and fro unnecessarily. What would you suggest for our first attractions in WDW before watching the fireworks??

How old are your kids?

Sorry, should have said, two boys 8 and 13.

You might have a hard time getting 7DMT at a decent time on your first day. PP and IASW are classics. Pirates and HM are other good choices and still in what I would consider the same half of the park (PP being the line).

There are a couple of ways you could tackle it.

You could veer towards tomorrowland:

  • Hit the People Mover to give them an overview of the land and prepare them for space mountain on another day.
  • do Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin ( because they will have seen it on the people mover).
  • maybe astro orbiter if they are adventurous.
  • if you have the time, maybe the speedway.

Or head towards frontier/adventure land as you had initially thought:

  • haunted mansion
  • shooting arcade
  • pirates
  • maybe do a the treasure hunt
  • give the a preview of splash ; my DS & DD all-time favorite
  • and show them big thunder

Depending on when sundown is on the day you arrive, I like to visit Tomorrowland when it is getting dark. It is most beautiful in the dark with all the lights. It is also a nice time to ride PeopleMover.

So, if you are arriving in the afternoon, you might want to do Tomorrowland stuff after dinner so that you are there as the lights come on.

This means, starting the afternoon with maybe Adventureland. Starting at POTC, perhaps, and working counter clockwise to Tomorrowland.

I don’t have a specific suggestion, but I agree with those who say to do things that are close to each other. No reason to go running around unnecessarily.

I love Adventureland in the afternoon/evening. You can get FPPs easily enough for those rides, and there’s Dolewhip.

I like the combo (used it in my trip and with friends):

  • Under the sea - example of dark ride, very efficient to go on/grab FP, relatively short. Good to figure out if people like dark rides and set expectations for future slow moving rides
  • Barnstormer - mini test coaster. If people are not sure they can deal with coaster they can go on Barnstormer and see. If they think “I am glad this is over”, better to stop at that. If they think “Already? I wish this was 5 times as long!” then they will enjoy MK coasters
  • Buzz/Character - basically, something from yet another category that fits your group.

The goal is not to be the best rides, but to get ‘demo’ versions of other rides so they know what to expect.

I would go with something more exciting than People Mover. It’s their first impression!! I’d go Pirates and Haunted Mansion.
Do they have a favorite character/movie?

Totally agree. People Mover is great but for a 13 year old not so much.
I would either go Buzz Light year direction or Pirates.


We started the granddaughter of my sister out in Adventureland on her very first WDW trip ever. With Aladdin’s Magic Carpets. We felt Adventureland would be less over stimulating than Fantasyland.

Over a dozen years later, we’re still doing Magic Carpets as the first ride, cuz tradition. Even with adult newbies.

After this, your 13 yr old’s day just gets better: Pirates, Splash and Big Thunder Mtn.

Thanks everyone, some great ideas. My boys would refuse to go on rides like Magic Carpets or Astro Orbiter as they feel too grown up (me on the other hand, I intend to go on Winnie the Pooh etc!). Having said that my eldest has watched loads of YouTube vids on the rides and he’s looking forward to People Mover, he loves the idea of it going through some of the attractions. He’s hugely into animatronics too so looking forward to things like PoC and Splash Mountain.
They have a mixture of Disney favourites, my youngest is hugely into Moana at the moment and my eldest is currently watching Ratatouille over and over so a visit to France in Epcot is a must for him! They refuse to do anything Frozen related tho!!
I like the idea of Tomorrowland lit up at night, particularly with the People Mover so I think we’ll head to Adventureland first, dinner then Tomorrowland.
I’ve never thought about the Pirates treasure hunt but it seems to get good reviews. Has anyone done a couple of hunts to get a PoC fast pass? How does this work, where do you get your FP from?

I have girls that are 9 and 12, and they love the pirate treasure hunt. I sit at a table with a drink and they go have fun.You start and end each quest at the little hut right at the border of Adventureland and Frontierland, and that’s where you get the FPP at the end of the second one. Everyone who wants to ride has to be there to scan their Magic Band/ticket to get the FPP when they turn in the second quest.

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DS7 loved:
-buzz (this is a good first ride)

With kids those age I’d just show them the ride (via a video or in person) and ask if they want to do it. I don’t think you need to save any of them for later in the trip.

Would it be reasonable to do People Mover after fireworks? I like the idea of trying it at night but we’re going in August so it probably won’t be starting to get dark until 8pm and we’ll be thinking about getting a spot to watch fireworks by 8.30.

As long as park hours allow it, absolutely. People Mover is my favorite ride experience at WDW for various reasons… but if you only ride it once, I think doing it after dark is best.

ALTHOUGH, one downside to doing it at night is that your eyes are adjusted to the dark so that when you enter Space Mountain, you aren’t as “blind” as you normally would be in the day time. As a result, you can see more (like the coaster track) inside than you otherwise could. But overall, I still rank it more highly at night than during the day. Better yet, do it both. :slight_smile:

ETA: BTW, another advantage to riding it after the fireworks is you can avoid the mad rush of people trying to leave the park, clogging the monorails, etc. But often times the fireworks happen at or after park close.

At the moment fireworks are scheduled for 9.15pm, park hours are until 10pm so I’m hoping to view somewhere around the border to Fantasyland then go back in for People Mover. Late night for my boys by the time we’ve travelled back to hotel but hoping excitement will keep them awake! . :crossed_fingers:

Yeah…I’d get in line for People Mover right away, then. Most folks will be exiting the park at this point, and since it already creates a larger delay in getting out, why not take advantage of getting in one last ride on People Mover? Hopefully by the time you hop off People Mover, the lines for the buses and monorail or ferry will have died down somewhat.

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My DS enjoyed the Pirates League…I think I enjoyed even more. If your boys want to keep a pirate theme throughout the afternoon/evening. This would top it off.

  • PotC
  • Pirates league
  • Pirate treasure Hunt