Magic Kingdom Observations: October 28, 2013

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This morning before I’d even opened my eyes I’d already decided that tonight had to be spent at the Magic Kingdom! It had been nearly a week since I’d been in the park, and I was missing it. I thought you guys would enjoy going with me – so imagine that after work you’re hitting the road and heading for the most magical place on Earth!

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As you can see from the photo above, it wasn’t a slow night but I have certainly seen it more crowded. It was also that time of night when folks start clustering around Main Street waiting for the events of the night to start taking place.

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At just a bit before 7 pm, I had one hour before the first parade and four hours until park closing! The night was young, and the weather was perfect! In the past few days fall has arrived at Walt Disney World! When I arrived at the park the thermometer in my car said it was in the high 70s, but when I left the temperature was about 10 degrees cooler. Very pleasant, though I must admit I rolled down the sleeves on my shirt by the end of the night. (Wimpy Floridian!)

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I waited around a bit hoping that we would get an amazing sunset, but it seemed like it was just going to be gray. I fired off a few obligatory castle shots and then headed off towards Tomorrowland.

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After crossing over the bridge I found that both Stitch’s Great Escape and Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor had a 10 minute wait! I also spotted that Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin had just a 20 minute wait and Space Mountain only 35 minute! The wait times were very reasonable! Of course, I was heading where there was no posted wait time: the PeopleMover! The ride was great as, always, but it experienced a breakdown that kept us stuck for a little while. Much to my dismay, that sunset I’d been waiting for happened while I was trapped on the ride!

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Oh well- guess I’ll just have to go back! :) After the PeopleMover I headed back towards Fantasyland, crossing in front of the Tomorrowland Speedway which had a 20 minute wait. I couldn’t resist a ride on Mad Tea Party with only a 5 minute wait! I tried to take pictures for you guys, but they were very spinny! Next, I headed over to The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh but couldn’t bring myself to wait 35 minutes. So I decided to stop for a little snack instead!

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This is the Strawberry Shortcake Sundae from Storybook Treats (menu). It’s just what the name implies, with a base of light cake covered in strawberries, ice cream, and heavy whipped cream. Is it the best or most unique thing you could have when visiting Magic Kingdom? Certainly not! But for $5.53 after tax, it struck my fancy and was a delicious treat. I enjoyed this as I strolled back to Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid. I noted on the way that Enchanted Tales with Belle only had at 30 minute wait! The Little Mermaid only had a 10 minute wait by the time I got there!

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I really like this ride despite what a lot of the online community says. Maybe it is because I grew up with the film and characters, but I’m just so happy to have a ride for this great movie! Once I was off this ride I decided to head over towards Peter Pan. I thought maybe if I looked pitiful enough they’d open it up for me… no such luck! November 14 can’t get here soon enough!!

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After this I walked through Liberty Square, taking in a quick ride on The Haunted Mansion with only a 10 minute wait! I scooted back toward Big Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain to check wait times. They were 20 minutes and 15 minutes, respectively. And then I heard something I can’t resist… the last train! I don’t know what it is, but when I’m lucky enough to hear that the last train of the night is leaving I just have to take it! So I ran up the stairs and caught the train right back to Fantasyland!! As we were chugging along I decided no matter the wait that I was riding Dumbo! Lucky for me the wait was only 5 minutes!

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After this I grabbed a spot in New Fantasyland for the Wishes fireworks. I’d decided to carry my tripod and wanted to see if I could get a few decent photos. You can be the judge of whether I was successful!

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After the fireworks, while folding up my tripod I realized that I was getting really tired! I knew that if I wanted to sneak out during the second parade and avoid some of the crowds I had time for one last ride. I decided to speed walk over to Pirates of the Caribbean to end with a classic!

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And with that my night was over, and now it was just the steady crawl to make it to the exit. I made the mistake of trying to duck through the gift shops, forgetting what time of day it was! If you have shopping to do I recommend you take some time during the heat of the day when the attraction lines are very long but the shops are still doable. In the last few hours the park is open the shops on Main Street become pandemonium! It is also worth noting that the shops will normally stay open an hour past park closing, but they do stay busy.

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Another tip for getting out of the Magic Kingdom if you’re not staying at a Disney Resort is to take the Ferry Boat. While the Monorail line stays consistently packed all the way to the Transportation and Ticket Center, the Ferry Boat line empties into a large holding pin. Most guests crowd one side, but they do not let more people into this holding area than the Ferry can hold. So even if you grab a bench as far from the loading area as you can get – you’ll still get on the Ferry! Enjoy not having to wait elbow to elbow with the crowd. This is one place it’s nice to come in last! Just remember that the Ferry Boats have tons of spiders for some reason, so be careful leaning on anything.

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I hope that I will “See Ya Real Soon” in a future blog post! Does anyone have requests for park report or other topics? I love bringing the parks to you! Please let us know in the comments below and as always thanks for reading!

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Posted on November 3, 2013

44 Responses to “Magic Kingdom Observations: October 28, 2013”

  • WOW…it must be really “tough” on you to go 10 days without visiting Disney World! It’s been a whole tear since I’ve been there, but you know what? I survived the withdrawal pangs! In fact, there were none. You tend not to have any when you’re a single senior citizen at the parks and get treated like you don’t exist by Disney employees while they fall all over themselves catering to families.

    • Hi Barry – thanks for reading! I was sort of joking.. but that might not have come through. I know how entitled my withdrawal must sound! And I can relate to your experience it can hard to be in the parks alone. I can feel invisible sometimes. CMs are always incredibly kind when approached but it isn’t the same as being there with kids. I feel like we’ll never get picked for special experiences (like being in the parade) because we don’t have kids.

      • Don’t worry about it, Daisy. I haven’t been to WDW in, let’s see, seven and a half years, and I wasn’t upset by what you said. I totally get that the withdrawals get worse the more often you visit a Disney park. We have annual passes to Disneyland and we live about six hours away. Went Labor Day weekend, a weekend in October, and our next trip is planned for the first week in December, and I’m counting the days! How am I supposed to make it another 26 days without a Disneyland fix? ;-)

        • It’s been almost a year since we’ve been to Disneyland! I miss it sooo much! But Paris is next so we took a year off. You’ll have to ride HMH for me. ;)

    • Oh seriously Barry, I’m a middle-age single guy and I go to WDW by myself a lot. They give me lots of appropriate attention all the time. Lighten up.

      • Perhaps you live in Fl. so getting to the parks are not too difficult for you. I’m a diabetic on dialysis 3 times per week so traveling down to Fl. from NJ was a little more difficult for me. The attention that I received was in the order of “oh…only 1″ when I would tell ride personnel how many people were in my party. And please DON’T tell me how to live my life!

        • I agree that sometimes the east coast parks can seem like they leave you out if you’re not a big family group. You might try the Anaheim parks next time. I find them more friendly and more personable towards single guests. Easier to get around as well since they are smaller. I enjoy visiting Magic Kingdom as a single visitor, but the big groups can be very off-putting. I bet you would love Disneyland. Numerous non-family adult guests and many singles are part of the norm there.

        • Barry, here’s some fromage for your whine & cheese party…of one.
          You claim to be treated like a pariah at WDW yet here you are reading and commenting on a website dedicated to that very topic. You choose to miss the author’s obvious joke and you play the “pity me” card. I have traveled solo a few times in WDW and always been warmly welcomed by CMs and characters. But that could be my choice to imitate the bluebird of happines…instead of a grouse. :-)

          • Please fly away Mr. “Bluebird of Happiness” & learn how to spell properly as you’re flying.

          • I hardly think a compassionate response to someone clearly expressing something they experienced that hurt them or let them down is to tell them to stop “playing the pity card” and suck it up. It seems to me you’re the one treating the previous poster like a pariah. I’m not really sure why you would want to treat someone like that.

          • An example of how Disney Guest Relations “handles” a problem: I attended the Mickey/Minnie Christmas Party last November. I had great difficulty seeing after dark because the park uses their regular lighting which provides very little illumination. I went to Guest Relations to explain my medical sight problem. While being “sympathetic” to my problem, they refused to refund the cost of the extra ticket I had purchased to attend the festivities. They offered me a readmission ticket which is worth less than what I paid for the Christmas party ticket. Plus I really have no intention of returning to Fl from NJ in order to have a lousy time once again at DisneyWorld!

        • I also totally get how some people just won’t let you say that you had a less than perfect time at WDW. Has happened to me as well. It’s hurtful, because it’s like calling you a liar for being honest about your experience. Disney can be wonderful but they’re not perfect, and it’s definitely possible to be treated badly and have an unhappy time at WDW.

          • For some “not so happy” commentary check back later this week. It sure isn’t always sunshine and roses! I’m happy to share it all. :)

            Barry- thank you for reading and commenting. I appreciate you.

          • When I have had an unpleasant experience at WDW I document it and share it with the only people who can actually solve it: Guest Services. To fail to seek a solution when a problem arises and to simply choose to grouse about it is whining. To spew blanket condemnations with no evidence and no effort at mature resolution reveals more about the complainer, in my humble opinion.
            Each time I have had a problem at WDW it was remedied by Guest Services because I took it to the source; complaining in a non-Disney affiliated comments section is guaranteed to not fix it.

          • Thanks for understanding my situation!

  • Great post :) I was in the park that night and it really was a beautiful evening. Thanks for another great blog, they get me through the waits between visits!

    right, now off back to the parks or another fabulous disney day.

    • Hey Kirsty! Thanks for the nice comment! I’m glad you liked it. I have some really fun stuff coming up in the next few weeks. :)

      Hope you have the best day ever!!

  • There are 37! exclamation points! in this article!!!

  • Daisy – Great article…sure makes me want to be there. It made me forget the negative things that happen to ALL of us when we’re there and remember the magical things. I think I will start planning our next trip today! :)

    • Hi Debbie! Thank you so much for your kind words. Let me know if you think of any article ideas you’d like to see while you’re planning. I love sharing the parks with you!

  • Loved your article. I am a recent transplant and don’t live too far from Disney now. I have since been over on planned day trips but look forward to doing something similar to you in the not too distant future. Yes we are very lucky to live where we do.

    • Hey Margaret – I hope you do! It is the best feeling in the world to just be able to pop over on a whim without any plan at all. Enjoy! :)

  • Great photo of Dumbo. If you squint, you’d almost think he was flying through Space Mountain’s loading station.

  • Thanks for the article, Can’t get enough reading about Disney. Will be there in seven days and can’t wait to see it again. This is a special visit as it is just the wife and I for the first time, looking forward to spending the time seeing what we want to see for a change.

    • Hi Kevin! I know you’ll have a great trip! You’ll be here in time to still try some Food & Wine Festival too! :) The weather has just gotten perfect – great time for a trip.

  • Thanks for your post! I was wondering what, if anything, you observed about the wait times during your visit. I’m curious to know what effect the FP+ testing is having on the standby waits…

    • Hi Herb – thanks for your kind words. FP+ has absolutely had a negative impact on wait times. The evening I talk about in this article it wasn’t too busy but yesterday was a mess. There was almost nothing we could ride without a 30min wait. Be sure to get there early and work whichever fastpass system you’re on. Planning is the only way to get around it. Good Luck! :)

  • I enjoyed reading your post – the park updates told in a “story” fashion are a lot of fun to read. It’s also interesting to see how others use their time in the park.

    • Thanks, Douglas. I do the same thing. I’m at the parks ALL the time and I still love reading about what other people do when they are there. I figured my experience is very different from a typical guest since I just go and poke around… it seems people either love it or hate it! I’m glad you had fun reading. :)

  • Great post! I felt like I was there! Thanks for sharing your evening with us. I’m headed to WDW in 10 days and cannot wait!!

  • Love the photos Daisy, especially the on-ride ones! What are you shooting with?

    • Hi John! Thanks – I’m working very hard on the photos.. there are some AMAZING Disney photogs! These were shot with a Canon 6D and a few different lenses. However, it all depends on your skills. There is nothing here I couldn’t have gotten with a Canon T2i. I just learned that too late after I upgraded and my photos didn’t improve!!! LOL! :)

  • Love, love, love your articles. Thanks!

  • Wonderful post, thank you so much for sharing! I love the Little Mermaid ride we have in California, and it always makes me sad that no one else seems to realize how amazing it is. The wait is rarely longer than five or ten minutes. Also, 35 minutes for Pooh?! I’ve never seen the line for that at Disneyland longer than 15 minutes, and that was on a very busy day!

    • Hey Rebekah – thank you so much for commenting! It is really nice to hear from you! :) And yes – Pooh gets crazy 60+ minute waits here. I thought we’d found treasure at DL when the line is always short! We rode it over and over! Next time you head this way be sure to ride in the first hour of the day or grab a fastpass! (Or just skip- they are really similar)

  • This article was so refreshing! My wife and I are going to WDW for the first time in January as a Convention/Vacation. I felt like I was traveling along side of you for a stress free evening at the park. When I got done reading, I totally forgot I was in my office at work, I thought I was at Disney. You also showed me that you can go into the park for just a few hours and do a lot. We will be staying at the CSR for the conference, and I wasn’t sure on conference days if it would be worth sneaking into a park during some of the breaks, but after this article I think it can be refreshing way to take a break and enjoy some magic. Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (By the way, I think it was all the explanation points that got me excited :) )

    • Hi Mark – thank you so, so much for your kind comment! :) I just love hearing this from people. It is always my hope to make you feel like you are really there! I hope you have a few great evenings in the park. It is always worth going!

  • Hi Daisy. I thought this was a great article. I love Disney! My last trip was this past June with my family & we had a wonderful time.
    Since I have not experienced it firsthand, I would love to hear more about FastPass+. I consider myself very good at securing Fastpasses and experiencing the least amount of wait time with my family (thanks to touringplans.com tips & planning- love it). I am concerned about the limit of 3 scheduled fastpasses with FastPass+. I am hoping to plan our next trip to WDW June 2015 (seems so far away). Any tips or suggestions for getting the most out of FastPass+ would be appreciated. Thank you.

    • Hi Carol. I have posted article for the good and the bad. I hope you find them both helpful and have a great trip!