Which park to start with?

My kids will be 9 & 6 for our February trip. They are not daredevils but do enjoy a good spinning ride. We plan on 5 park days with MK twice. What parks would be your first and second choices to introduce kids to the world? (Assuming that CL are favourable)

I almost always start and end w/ MK. No better way to kick off vacation than to get my castle fix!

I typically go to MK the first day. This trip I will start with AK - last trip, DD enjoyed AK so much she requested an additional day that was not able to accommodate. We will go to MK the 2nd day, and end our trip at MK for HEA.

If they haven’t been I’d recommend MK on the first day. It’s absolutely the most magical and is just so exciting to walk in on the first day and see the castle and all. Plus, the MK rides should be perfect for your kids ages. I’ve heard people say that they do a less kid friendly park first, like Epcot, so that the kids aren’t let down after going to MK first, but I’ve never bought into that. I like to go for the WOW factor on that first morning!


We have usually done Epcot on our arrival day–just a couple of attractions, check out Mouse Gears, and then dinner and back to resort. So our first full exciting RD day is MK. We always end with MK, except that one trip, the kids rebelled and said they wanted a third AK day instead of a third MK day–there was a FPP scramble but it’s all good.

For me it really depends on what day is your first day. If you’re starting your trip on a Monday for instance MK crowd levels are usually atrocious since everyone likes to start with MK. I would at least look at the crowd levels as a guide.

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We have been to Disney twice and done Epcot on the first day both times and our kids still say it’s their favorite park. I had read that if you start with MK some kids are disappointed with Epcot after MK. The first trip our kids were 6, 4 and 1 and the second they were 9, 7 and 4.

I’ve been enough times that I don’t have a specific “first day” park; I base it on CLs/EMH and FPP availability. That being said, if the kids have never been before, The MK is the “most Disney” of the parks, and there’s something that even a slightly jaded “old guy” like me feels entering MS and seeing the castle. But keep in mind, if you are not staying on site and/or will not be able to make it for EMH RD, do not go to a park that has it.

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Use this to decide which parks are best to choose on which days:


I have found their crowd calendar to be the best all-around (none are perfect).

ETA: Follow the green checkmarks as much as possible!

My first day varies based on what day of the week it is, the park hours & the predicted crowd levels in the parks for that day.
The other practical thing to consider is FPP if you are staying on property and you want to get a FPP for FoP or SDD - those days need to be at the end of the trip. I think you probably need to be at 60+3 at least.
I do agree that MK is the most ‘Disney’ of the parks so if the other factors work out - that is the park I would start with for the kids

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Do not do HS or AK on the first day due to FP availability. You want to be able to secure FP for FOP and SD. I would do MK and Epcot on days 1 & 2 at whatever order works for you.