Ask a hundred Magic Kingdom guests to rank their favorite attractions in the park, and you’re bound to get a hundred totally different lists. It’s not surprising. Given the depth of feeling that Disney guests have for their favorite attractions, any list that ranks them is sure to be controversial. With the imminent (hopefully) closing of Stitch’s Great Escape, the longtime “attraction that wouldn’t die” and virtually unanimous choice for last place, the field is wide open. Therefore, here for your general derision and outright anger, we boldly present to you a list of the attractions at Magic Kingdom, from worst to best.
30. Swiss Family Treehouse
We’ve definitely enjoyed watching the 1960 live-action Disney film Swiss Family Robinson with the whole family. However, let’s face it – climbing 116 steps for the privilege of seeing a recreation of the Robinson family’s treehouse from a movie that’s well over 50 years old isn’t the most exciting thing to do. Sure, the view at the top is fantastic, but adding that much climbing to a day of walking around Magic Kingdom is low on a lot of people’s lists.
29. Astro Orbiter
While its elevated height makes this ride a little more interesting than the exact same ride you’ll find at any carnival or state fair, the Astro Orbiter is still just a normal spin ride with low capacity that frequently creates long wait times. Still, it rates doing at least once in your life but find a time when the line is short.
28. Liberty Square Riverboat
There’s a reason that the most likely guests you’ll find riding the Liberty Square Riverboat are elderly guests who don’t want to ride anything else and parents with sleeping babies. That’s because it’s a charming but low-key ride that’s perfect for elderly guests who don’t want to ride anything else and parents with sleeping babies. However, budding engineers may enjoy checking out the engines and paddle wheel mechanisms.
27. Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress
Another of the attractions that got its start at the 1964 World’s Fair, Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress delivers a look at advances in technology from the turn of the 20th century to the 1920’s, 1940’s, and today. While it may be a bit dated, it holds the distinction of being one of the very few attractions at Disney World that was touched by Walt Disney himself, as he died 5 years prior to the Magic Kingdom opening in 1971.
26. Tomorrowland Speedway
While it does have its fans, the Tomorrowland Speedway is an old, loud, exhaust-belching attraction that has long been in desperate need of replacement, or at least updating with the characters from the popular Cars franchise. Until then, it will continue to appeal mostly to very young children who enjoy going 7 miles per hour while having people ram into their car from behind.
25. Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
The Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover is a unique ride in that it gives you a look behind the scenes at a couple of the other rides in Tomorrowland: Space Mountain and Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. However, it you’re not interested in that – or in the fact that it uses linear induction motors that are emissions-free – it’s mostly just an opportunity to get off your feet for a rest.
24. The Hall of Presidents
Educational from both technological and historical perspectives, The Hall of Presidents delivers a presentation on the United States presidency, a recitation of the Gettysburg address, and speeches from both George Washington and the U.S.’s current sitting president, along with actual artifacts from past presidents. So while it might get your child some extra credit at school to check it out, they probably will prefer other rides.
23. The Barnstormer
The Barnstormer gives children the opportunity to ride a kid-sized roller coaster that features a Goofy theme. Great for kids not tall enough (or fearless enough) for the bigger coasters.
22. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
“The birds sing words and the flowers croon” in Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, whose Disneyland version was the first attraction to feature Audio-Animatronics. An attraction from a gentler time in our country, it seems to serve primarily as an air-conditioned respite for overheated guests. But an entertaining respite it is!
21. The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
Essentially a rip-off of the Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride, the theming nonetheless works very well at The Magic Carpets of Aladdin and it proves to be fairly popular with visitors to Adventureland. The most interesting part of this ride, however, isn’t part of the ride at all. It’s the spitting camel that sprays unsuspecting guests with water!
20. “it’s a small world”
The song will get stuck in your head and you’ll be lucky if you can get it out even after you’ve been back home for two weeks. Nonetheless, the “it’s a small world” ride is steeped in Disney tradition as it was part of the 1964 World’s Fair that provided a proving ground for several Disneyland attractions prior to their being moved to the park at the close of the World’s Fair. Ride Magic Kingdom’s version and resist the temptation to sing along!
19. Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
What is it about carousels that brings to mind images of childhood innocence and fun? Could it be that we’re all remembering our first rides on the Prince Charming Regal Carrousel? Perhaps. Either way, it is obligatory that you get a picture of your child riding one of the horses on this attraction.
18. Country Bear Jamboree
While it might not seem that a hillbilly music review which features puns galore would be a guest favorite, the Country Bear Jamboree features a surprising amount of laugh-out-loud humor. Originally intended for a Colorado ski resort that never materialized, Country Bear Jamboree was instead routed to Magic Kingdom in time for its grand opening.
17. Monster’s Inc. Laugh Floor
This interactive show based on the Disney/Pixar Monsters Inc. franchise operates on the premise that laughter provides 10 times more power for Monstropolis than children’s screams ever did. Join Mike Wazowski, Roz, and some other “monsters of comedy” for some wholesome family fun.
16. Walt Disney World Railroad
Walt Disney’s love of trains is evident throughout the Disney World Resort, whether it’s the monorail transporting guests around Seven Seas Lagoon or to Epcot, the Wildlife Express Train taking guests to Rafiki’s Planet Watch at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, or the Walt Disney World Railroad at Magic Kingdom. Serving as both an attraction and transportation, the Walt Disney World Railroad provides a relaxing, picturesque trip around the park. Be sure to take a ride and share in Walt’s love for the iron horse.
15. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Hop into a giant hunny pot and you’re on your way through the classic tales of Winnie the Pooh in this fun dark ride that makes use of classic Disney ride technology and effects. Meet Tigger, Piglet and Eeyore along the way, along with everyone’s favorite stuffed bear. But watch out for those Heffalumps and Woozles!
14. Enchanted Tales with Belle
Take a magical journey from Maurice’s workshop to the library in the Beast’s castle and experience a reenactment of the day that Belle met the Beast. The effects in Maurice’s cottage are amazing, but your enjoyment mileage can vary a lot in Enchanted Tales with Belle from one show to the next. If someone in your party is chosen to play a role, this can be an extremely fun attraction. If not, you’re just essentially watching someone else’s family have fun. And depending on the size of the crowd in line, you may not get much, if any, time with Belle.
13. Mad Tea Party
One of the opening day attractions at Magic Kingdom, Mad Tea Party is arguably the most iconic Disney ride of them all. It invariably shows up in any Disney World commercial that airs. The ability to control your own spin rate makes it very family friendly, so you can celebrate your journey in Wonderland at a leisurely rotation or at a breakneck whirl.
12. Dumbo the Flying Elephant
If any ride could challenge Mad Tea Party for the most historically iconic Disney ride in Magic Kingdom, Dumbo the Flying Elephant would be the one. A simple ride by nature, it’s the Dumbo theming and circus tent queue that takes this attraction to the next level. Well, that and the lever that controls your pachyderm’s altitude!
11. Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid
Look at this ride. Isn’t it neat? It’s more than a reason to get off your feet! Wouldn’t you think it’s a ride – a ride that has everything? It’s got Ariel and Sebastian aplenty. It’s got Ursula and Triton galore. You want other sea creatures? We’ve got many! But who cares? No big deal. Ride it some more…
10. Peter Pan’s Flight
Hop aboard a galleon and set sail over the city of London on your way to Never Land in this ride that is a perennial fan favorite. Peter Pan’s Flight takes you on an adventure to join Peter, Wendy, John, and Michael as they fly to the second star on the right and straight on ‘til morning. Along the way you’ll see the Lost Boys, mermaids, and the infamous Captain Hook and Mr. Smee. Only a codfish wouldn’t like this ride!
9. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin is an exciting shooting gallery game that you ride. Pilot your space cruiser into the Gamma Quadrant and use your laser cannon to blast Zurg and his squadron of robotic henchmen. Be sure to fire accurately and accumulate as many points as you can! Do you have what it takes to be a Galactic Hero?
8. Jungle Cruise
Walt Disney certainly must have loved a good pun, because there are so many attractions at Magic Kingdom that make generous use of them. The popular Jungle Cruise is no exception, thanks to its delightfully droll skippers who take great pleasure in your mirthful groans. Check out the “exotic” wildlife and watch out for headhunters!
7. Mickey’s PhilharMagic
It might be called Mickey’s PhilharMagic, but it’s Donald Duck who gets into trouble when he decides to put on Mickey’s sorcerer’s hat and conduct an orchestra. Things go haywire pretty quickly, and we join Donald as he is transported into several classic Disney songs. This 3D fantasy is a spectacular adventure not to be missed!
6. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
When you’re stuck on a runaway mine train, all you can do is hold on tight and hope for the best! Big Thunder Mountain Railroad takes guests racing down a rickety track and into an abandoned mine shaft. A great ride with plenty of quick turns and drops, your train will zip in and out of caverns and through an abandoned gold-mining town as it speeds along out of control. You’ll love the “wildest ride in the wilderness”!
5. Haunted Mansion
“Kindly step all the way in, please, and make room for everyone. There’s no turning back now.” And why would you want to? The Haunted Mansion is an attraction that utilizes an array of special effects both old and new to take you into some happy haunting grounds in your Doom Buggy. But beware of hitchhiking ghosts; they’re just dying to follow you home!
4. Space Mountain
Astronaut Gordon Cooper consulted with Disney during the building of Space Mountain to ensure that it felt as close to actual space flight as possible. As a result, this roller coaster ride in the dark constantly tosses you to and fro as you take your simulated journey through the galaxy. Without knowing which way the coaster will turn next, it is an exhilarating experience!
3. Pirates of the Caribbean
The Pirates of the Caribbean film series overlay of this hugely popular ride could have ruined a true Disney classic. Instead, the overall consensus is that it seamlessly blended the new elements with the traditional ride theming. The addition of the Captain Jack Sparrow Audio-Animatronic figures gave us a look at how far the technology had come, and how incredibly lifelike the figures could now be.
2. Splash Mountain
Splash Mountain is Imagineering at its finest, with Disney combining ride thrills and impeccable theming into a top-notch attraction. Guests travel with Br’er Rabbit as he tries to avoid Br’er Fox and Br’er Bear and get back to his Laughing Place. This 10-minute immersive experience culminates with an exhilarating 5-story log flume plunge and a rousing chorus of “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah”!
1. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
At the top of the list is the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, an indoor-outdoor roller coaster whose vehicles make use of “tilting” ride technology to simulate the experience of riding in a lurching mine cart. Nonetheless, this coaster rides incredibly smoothly. A fun, interactive ride queue makes the wait very tolerable, the storytelling during the ride is flawless, and on-ride cameras provide video footage so that you can relive your ride after it’s over.
This list sets aside more time-consuming activities at Magic Kingdom like Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom and A Pirates Adventure ~ Treasure of the Seven Seas in favor of true rides, attractions, and shows. But do you agree with these rankings? Or does this list have you screaming, “Off with their heads”?