Get a VIP view with FastPass+ parade and fireworks viewing areas at the Magic Kingdom (photos by Seth Kubersky)
Welcome to the future of fireworks and parades at Walt Disney World! In recent weeks, as the final rollout of FastPass+ has concluded in the Disney World parks, I’ve been sharing my experiences using the system as an Annual Passholder at Epcot, as well as at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Since my last post, FastPass+ has been fully implemented for all Disney World guests, including day-guests not staying on Disney property, and I’ve finally had the opportunity to experience one of the most controversial aspects of the new system. Without further ado, here are my FastPass+ parade and fireworks viewing tips, based on my personal observations at the Magic Kingdom.
Festival of Fantasy FastPass+ Parade Viewing
When the features of FastPass+ were first announced, the private reserved viewing areas for parades and other spectaculars were the aspect I was most skeptical (even cynical) about. Personally, such performances are usually very low on my priority list during a park visit for several reasons. Most of the parades had grown quite stale to me from years of over-exposure, I have an aversion to spending valuable touring time staking out a spot of asphalt just to get a good view, and I can’t abide being crammed like sardines in the crowd that accompanies the procession. So I would normally use that time to take advantage of marginally shorter queues at my favorite attractions. If I did want to see a parade, I’d typically walk up a minute or so before it started, and make do with a partial view blocked by the sea of shoulder-sitting small-fries in front of me. With a limit (soon to be lifted) of only 3 FastPass+ reservations per day, I couldn’t see myself “wasting” one on something like a parade when Space and Splash are beckoning.
This is currently the closest you can get to Anna and Elsa from Frozen without a mult-hour wait for their meet & greet.
Read the rest of this entry »
Resort View – Main Page
One of the first decisions you’ll have when booking a Disney World hotel room is which view to select. If you’re staying at the Yacht Club, for example, do any Garden View rooms have a view of the Stormalong Bay lazy river? If you’re on the monorail loop, does a Magic Kingdom View really improve your chances of seeing the Wishes fireworks? Is Savannah View at the Animal Kingdom Lodge worth the money?
To help you decide, we’ve spent the past year taking pictures of what you’ll see from the window of every Disney World hotel room – more than 30,000 individual photos. Today we’re giving you a preview of the first resort: Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort.
The first page shows you a map of the entire resort. On the left side is a set of filter options you can use to find exactly the room you want:
- Room Type Includes Disney’s description of the view, and the bed type in the room (if we know it). All-Star Sports has Standard and Preferred views, most with double beds. Moderates will show queen beds, and so on.
- Walking Distance to Lobby Useful for cutting down on walking time
- Walking Distance to Transportation Allows you to find rooms near bus stops, monorails and boats
- Floors If you prefer ground or upper-floor rooms, you can specify that here
- Sound Level Helps find the quiet rooms at the resort
- Accessibility Identifies ADA-accessible rooms by feature, including roll-in showers and more
- Our Picks Shows only the rooms which the Unofficial Guide has determined to be the best at the resort.
- Prices You can also filter by price by entering the date you’re checking in.
Set any of these options and click “Show Matching Rooms.” The map will highlight in red all of the buildings which have rooms matching your options.
Read the rest of this entry »