Some attractions and experiences at the Walt Disney World Resort are just a given… dining with the princesses at Cinderella’s Royal Table, going to Town Square Theater to meet Mickey Mouse, and grab Fast Passes for the more popular attractions. But what are some of the more overlooked experiences that you can take part in while on vacation at Disney World? Let’s talk about a few of my favorites!
- Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress (Magic Kingdom – Tomorrowland)
This is my all time favorite attraction in ALL of Walt Disney World. Why? Because Walt Disney had his hand on every element of this project – this was his telling of the past and his prediction of the future! This is a 20 minute “show” featuring an animatronic family through the ages – beginning at the turn of the century and ending in the futuristic version of “today” – This attraction premiered at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York and was well ahead of its time. I could watch it over and over! (Even if this isn’t your type of thing – it’s well worth it for the twenty minutes of shade and air conditioning!)
- Mickey’s PhilharMagic (Magic Kingdom – Fantasyland)
This 3D experience is almost always under a 10 minute wait and I’m honestly shocked! The theater features a HUGE 150-foot screen, on which presents a 15-minute medley of some of Disney’s favorite movie moments. Included are scenes from Beauty and the Beast (where you might smell pie!), The Little Mermaid and Fantasia’s Sorcerer’s Apprentice (where you might get a little wet!).
- Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros (Epcot – World Showcase, Mexico)
Tucked away in the back corner of the Mexico Pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase is Gran Fiesta Tour – the cutest little ride featuring some of Mexico’s history and scenery and starring everyone’s favorite duck, Donald. Because this is pretty hidden and not well advertised, the wait is almost always under ten minutes, if not under five, even!
- Celebrate the Magic (Magic Kingdom – Presented nightly before Wishes)
Most people know about this because they stumbled upon it while waiting for the fireworks! If you want a really, really good spot for Wishes (Magic Kingdom’s nightly fireworks display), it’s pretty smart to find a spot in front of the Cinderella Castle well in advance. By doing so, you’ll be in prime position for Celebrate the Magic – a light show that is projected onto the Castle about 20 minutes prior to Wishes. This cute show features scenes and songs from popular Disney movies – such as Frozen, Lion King, Tangled, and my personal favorite – Wreck It Ralph! This show is definitely best viewed from the front of the Castle, if you watch from the side, you won’t get a full view of it.
- Walt Disney – One Man’s Dream (Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Mickey Avenue)
This hidden gem is a small exhibit honoring the life and legacy of Walt Disney, tucked away in the back of Hollywood Studios, near Toy Story Mania. You can walk through fairly quickly, but give yourself plenty of time to really look at the all of the memorabilia and read the fun facts about Walt’s life and career in animation. One of my favorite spots in the exhibit is the replica of Walt’s office!
There are so many other experiences at Walt Disney World that often go unnoticed. What are some of your favorite attractions that are often overlooked?
My name is Haley Tucker and I am a vacation planner with Travel with the Magic. Planning a Disney trip can be stressful, and often times, the smaller attractions and experiences fly under your radar. Let me step in and show you all the little things that can make your vacation even better!