Growing up in Florida and only a couple of hours from Orlando, I’ve visited Disney World’s Magic Kingdom countless times. Each visit brings new revelations and experiences including the last a few weeks ago. My family made our now seemingly annual trek to the Mouse House in celebration of my niece’s five years on this planet. Taking on the Magic Kingdom with eight people was surprisingly uneventful yet it still managed to give us new memories as only Disney can do. If you are headed to the Magic Kingdom anytime soon I have some tips below that may make your trip just that more magical.
1. Eat lunch at 2:30.
Yes, 2:30. If you can manage on snacks and mini-meals to stay energized, try eating a late lunch at The Liberty Tree Tavern in Frontier Land. It’s casual full-service dining which beats standing in line with the masses in the quick dining areas to order your food and then stalk, along with 200 other people, an available table. The restaurant closes for lunch at 3, so by the time we were seated, our section was empty which allowed us to enjoy a quiet meal that left us recharged when we were finished.
The meal was also on the money. Based on my experiences at the quick dining stops, I had low expectations because to me, the food made for the masses is bland and tasteless. However, the meals at The Liberty Tree Tavern were delicious – everyone was happy. I ordered the Colony Salad, a couple of people in my party ordered the Pilgrims’ Feast which included turkey with the trimmings. My stomach was happy, the service was great, the place was free of screaming kids and it didn’t put a hole in the pocket.
2. See Cinderella’s dress.
Head into Castle Couture, a tiny little shop in Fantasy Land that caters to the littlest of princesses, to bring out the little girl in you. Tucked away, on display is Cinderella’s, ‘made by mice’ dress. As I was browsing the store I just happened upon the dress which was a nice treat. I surprised myself by frantically asking in one random run on sentence ‘Is this Cinderella’s dress can I take a picture?’ to the cast member giving watch. You’ll also find a version of Sleeping Beauty’s dress behind the register.
3. Notice the ‘zipline’ attached to the Cinderella Castle.
You’ll want to spot this when you come into the park and then place yourself under it to watch the Wishes night time fireworks show. A real live Tinkerbell flies above your head during the spectacular show. I’ve seen the show before from different parts of the park, and it never occurred to me that Tinkerbell was actually a real person flying over mesmerized park goers, but standing under the line (and after doing some internet research) it’s pretty easy to see that the soul brave enough to do this is an actual person and not a mechanical figure. It’s pretty amazing to see Tink that close and you’ll be fascinated when you see how high she flies and how far across the park she goes.
We stood to the right of the castle on the walkway leading to Future Land, where we had a great view of the Tinkerbell right above us. I would recommend heading there about 20-30 minutes before the show begins.
4. Visit the Main Street Confectionary Shop.
Oooweee, if you love sweets this is the place for you. There is every type of ‘moused’ up sweet you can find, but the real treat is watching the candy makers craft their work right in front of you. It’s easy to become entranced within in few minutes by watching them shape popcorn krispy treats into mouse ears or putting the finishing touches on custom eared candy coated apples.
5. If in doubt, check the clinic out.
After our lunch at the Liberty Tree Tavern, my daughter wasn’t feeling the greatest. She started complaining that her throat was feeling ‘weird’ and she thought it may have been swelling up. Uh oh. We made a beeline to the clinic right off of Main Street. The attendants were more than helpful. They gave her a dose of Benadryl and gave us the instructions to stop any cast member if anything goes awry so they could send the EMT. Fortunately, the Benadryl did the trick, with the only discomfort being that she became a bit drowsy, which we were warned of. The nurse told us that was drowsiness was a possibility and to come back if she needed to take a nap in one of the beds. Love the customer service.
What new things have you discovered about Disney during your last trip?