Let's rank things!

Here’s fun – and controversy!

Theme Parks

  1. Animal Kingdom – FOP, NRJ,Tiffins, Satu’li, Sanaa (9/10)
  2. Islands of Adventure – Spider-Man, Kong, Hogwart’s (8.5/10)
  3. Hollywood Studios – TSMM, ToT, RNRC, Fantasmic (8/10)
  4. Universal Studios – Minions, Fallon, Simpsons, London/Diagon Alley (7.5/10)
  5. Epcot – Soarin’, IllumiNations, World Showcase, Impressions de France, Le Cellier (7/10)
  6. Magic Kingdom – Main Street, Cindarella’s castle, general atmosphere, HEA (6/10)

No-one will agree with me with almost any aspect of that ranking. It’s based on how badly I want to go back to each park. Bear in mind I’m 48 years old and have no children. I’m mostly motivated by (adult) rides and restaurants, and visual spectacle.

Individual rides

  1. FOP (10/10)
  2. Kong (9/10)
  3. Spider-Man (8.75/10)
  4. Soarin’ (8.5/10)
  5. Jimmy Fallon (8.25/10)
  6. TSMM (8/10)

I think I’m too old to enjoy thrill-type rollercoasters and milder ones seem dull. Honestly, I just don’t really enjoy Space Mountain. And BTM is smooth but not thrilling enough. 7DMT is vastly over-rated. I quite enjoyed Hulk at Universal but I’m not gasping to ride it again. (I actually prefer the rollercoasters at Alton Towers in the UK – Oblvion and Rita still thrill me after having ridden them many times.)

The “new” 3D rides at Universal, and FOP, just blew me away with their immersion and stunning creativity. I’ve never experienced anything like that at all. I wish I’d ridden Soarin’ more than once.

Best restaurants

  1. Tiffins – great food, nice environment (9/10)
  2. Satu’li Canteen – great fast food, great value (8.5/10)
  3. Sanaa – good food, great environment (8.25/10)
  4. Le Cellier – really delicious food, not great environment (8/10)

Best night-time shows

  1. HEA – projections and fireworks, emotionally moving (9/10)
  2. Fantasmic – surprising, sometimes breathtaking, emotionally moving (8.5/10)
  3. IllumiNations – coherent use of fireworks, and exciting (8/10)
  4. Rivers of Light – pretty (6/10)
  5. Cinematic Spectacular – interesting, a little emotional (4/10)
  6. Star Wars – meh (1/10)

Best dark rides

  1. Navi River Journey – clever, surprising and immersive (8.5/10)
  2. Hogwarts Express (8.25/10)
  3. Spaceship Earth – incredibly creative, animatronics amazing, big surprise (8/10)
  4. PeopleMover – weirdly fun (7/10)
  5. Small World – definitively Disney (6/10)

Haunted House, Pirates, Peter Pan etc – meh. Not bothered.

Most memorable experiences

  1. FOP – you ride a flying horse around an alien world: amazing
  2. Spider-Man – 3D, but the car moves
  3. The table we got at Sanaa – zebras and giraffes right on the other side of the glass
  4. The deliciousness of the food at Le Cellier – so tasty
  5. Seeing a gecko outside Tiffins – so cute
  6. Meeting Joy (and Sadness)
  7. TSMM – so creative and so much (unexpected) fun

Worst experiences

  1. Getting a rubbish table at California Grill
  2. MNSSHP getting rained off (sort of)
  3. Getting a rubbish table (and mediocre food) at BOG
  4. Star Wars dessert party and fireworks
  5. Mediocre food and production-line feel at CRT

Most impressive visual experience

  1. Main Street and Cindarella’s castle on arrival – iconic and emotional
  2. Projections on Cindarella’s castle during HEA
  3. Partners (statue of Walt and Mickey) – always makes me cry
  4. View from California Grill (good tables)
  5. Hogwart’s castle
  6. Gringott’s Bank
  7. BOG – both external and internal, except the Suckfest room that we got for dinner
  8. Tree of Life, though the branches and leaves are weird

Love it - won’t try to budge you on any rankings - as well it is what it is for a reason and as a fellow 48 year old - I know you were the financier of your trip and deserve to rank it as you see fit!!

I found some rankings interesting - different aspect. I do have to say one of my favorite rides is forbidden journey though. I do think MK and Main Streat just have a great emotional response. I love the avant garde aspect of spaceship Earth. I think you would have liked EPCOT in its original form. Today’s version is a mere shadow of its former self.

I also love the PeopleMover. It is, if described nothing more than an airport type transport - but there is something about it.

I do fully agree with you regarding the general theme you have for Worst Experiences. I find the majority of the food in WDW ok at best. There are a few high spots - but most of the time it is overpriced, overcooked, and I’m basically just “over it”. There are some nice places - but I HATE the herd mentality of many of the places.

Nice writeup - I am sure some will loose their heads at it - but at $100 a day for park admission I think WDW needs to up its game


Brilliant thread:

I can’t go into your detail though

Best night time show - Happily Ever after

Best restaurant
1st Tiffins
2nd Monsieur Paul (same or better food than le celier but with the atmosphere as well)
3rd Hollywood Brown Derby

Best snack
1st the ice cream parlour in Harry Potter world
2nd the caramel place in Germany at epcot

Best Rides
1st FOP
2nd Kong
3rd The newest Harry Potter 3d ride (forget it’s name)
4th Spiderman
5th Hulk
6th Soarin

Best Park
1st Magic Kingdom - its just the tradition

Best place to stay disney

  1. Any hotels walkable to epcot at night that allow you to dine round the world

Best place to stay universal

  1. any deluxe universal for the unlimited express pass

Ps glad you stayed posting

Told you it takes you back to great memories

Worst experience - poor view at fantasmia and didn’t rate the show either

Didn’t like how busy MK was in some areas. It spoilt how I remembered MK from previous visits

1 Like

Amazingly that makes the first three posters in this thread - all 48 years old!!

1 Like

Interesting that I forgot Hollywood Brown Derby. I loved the Cobb salad – I’d never had one before or knew anything about them – but I have a theory it made me ill. Something did. So I have a slight question mark against HBD.

New list, inspired by yours

Best drink

  1. Frapuccino – I’m sorry, but I love these, and the day wasn’t complete without one
  2. Butterbeer – instant ice cream headache, but worth it

I had fillet steak at HBD

Best steak of the holiday. Great server.

Anyone who goes there though I recommend you request a booth table

I’ve just thought of another bad experience - the 40s diner in Hollywood studios - our server wasn’t as bossy or funny as others must have experienced when I read TA reviews. I expected so much more fun in there.

Well that sank like a stone. Note to self: forum people are not fun people!

Sorry! I’ve never been to WDW so I can’t contribute until I go in November.

Wait wait wait… You rode both Haunted Mansion and Pirates I know for sure… how are you ranking them as “meh. Not Bothered”? ESPECIALLY Haunted Mansion? I need exposition here otherwise I’m calling “shenanigans” on your list. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Your level of detail is intimidating! I’ve never thought to rank things out of 10, and honestly don’t have time to do it now - I’m so indecisive it would take me weeks!! But I enjoyed reading your lists. Didn’t necessarily agree with them, but life would be boring if we all agreed.

I’m tempted to fail to justify myself on the ground that you’ll then carry out your threat. It sounds fun :rofl:

Haunted mansion and pirates are both classic rides

They may not make top ranking lists but they are special in their own way

As are “it’s a small world” and “space mountain”

You have to ride them every visit to MK or its not disney

1 Like

I tend to have much smaller Top n lists, and then everything blends together. Also, I haven’t experienced enough Disney restaurants to rank that many of them. We never used to do TS when I was younger. I remember going back to the camper at Fort Wilderness and having a PB&J when I was a kid. I booked a lot of ADRs for our trip in October, so I would be able to make a better list after that.

Top Rides:

  1. BTMRR
  2. Peter Pan
  3. Pirates of the Caribbean
  4. Haunted Mansion
  5. 7DMT

Top Restaurants:

  1. BOG
  2. Biergarten

Top Park:

  1. Magic Kingdom
1 Like

Ok, I’m not going to rate out of 10, or even put things in order, but I’ll share some thoughts.

HS has always been my favourite Disney park, IOA my favourite Universal park. But since Diagon Alley opened, Universal Studios is tied with it.

AK has always been my least favourite. I haven’t been on FOP yet but I can’t imagine it’s going to suddenly make it a favourite. EP with a 7yo was brilliant - he was tall enough for all the rides, and we loved exploring the countries while doing Agent P. Last trip he was 11, no Agent P, and I definitely didn’t enjoy it as much. They are my bottom two.

MK is in between. We only really ride the mountains (Space, Splash, BTMRR, 7DMT) and PotC. Having said that, I actually love Fantasyland. I just have to do it solo because DH and DS hate it.


At Disney my favourites are the mountains as listed above, RnRC, ToT, EE, SSE, TSMM.

At Universal I love both HP rides, Hulk, Spider Man, the Cat in the Hat, The Mummy and the sadly departed Dragon Challenge - I hope what goes there is another fantastic coaster.


We loved BOG, LTT, Sci Fi, Raglan Road, Boma, Crystal Palace and Tusker House.

We only ate at Leaky Cauldron (breakfast) and Thunder Falls Terrace at Universal - both QS, really enjoyed both. We also ate at CowFish on CityWalk which was delicious. We only had burgers, they do sushi which is supposed to be good but we don’t eat it.

I don’t have a drinks category, but Butterbeer is life. And the ice cream at Florian Fortescues is amazing, though obviously not a drink, it just occurred to me.

1 Like

Fun idea!

Parks: Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios

Rides (I haven’t been on anything too intense though): Kali River Rapids, Soarin, Splash Mountain, 7DMT

Best meal - Garden Grill

Best dessert - master’s cupcake

Best beverage - Oslo at Akershus

Only saw Hallowishes, did love it

Memorable experience - first time DD saw Mickey, meeting Tinkerbell

Worst experience - Hollywood & Vine - just not the restaurant for us

Most impressive visual - Main Street & the Castle, projections on the castle, BOG, Spaceship Earth, Tree of Life

1 Like

I can’t believe I forgot to include the golf ball!

1 Like