Okay, Disney Diva I am not. I do not claim to be, nor do am I really even a Disney fan. I would choose Universal or Sea World hands down, every time, and twice on Sunday over the Disney parks. However, it is required by the parenting gods that be that we visit the Magic Kingdom. I mean, how can you not if you have little ones, especially little princess ones who love nothing more than to dance around and sing at the top of their lungs “Let It Go”, “Part of Your World”, “Be Our Guest”, and countless other Disney movie tunes.
So this weekend we embarked on our 3rd Disney adventure with children. I have personally been to Disney over 20 times in my life. (I am lucky enough to have a dear aunt and uncle that have lived in Orlando my entire life.) But being the cheap, thrifty people that we are, we always try to visit The Magic Kingdom right before they turn 3. This way they are old enough to appreciate it but can still get in of FREE! So this year we went on May 3rd, the day before my youngest daughter’s 3rd birthday.
Now I am an extremely organized person. I mean, I have planning notebooks for birthday parties (man do I do up some birthday parties. Check it out here). So needless to say I spent the last couple of weeks, exploring what time to be where, where to eat, how to avoid the crowds, and basically visited every “Pin” ever “pinned” about visiting Disney World. Check out my board!
Anywho! (Yes I meant any who and not any how.) On previous trips (keep in mind this is prior to new Fantasyland and the transfer to Fastpass +), I followed the tips from Birnbaum’s Walt Disney World.
2. Go straight to Fantasyland.
3. Do everything in Fantasyland first, making sure to use a Fast Pass for Peter Pan because the line is usually 30-60 minutes long for a 2 minute ride.
We usually go in this order:
Winnie the Pooh
Get Fast Pass for Peter Pan
Its a Small World
Go back to Peter Pan
4. Then we head to Liberty Square, Frontier Land, Adventure Land, take the train to Toon Town (now new Fantasy Land), Toon Town (now circus), then Tomorrow Land and then we go back for a night time ride on The Jungle Cruise. Someone goes ahead in different lands to grab Fast Passes while we are at other attractions.
Using this method, we never waited for more than 20-30 minutes for any ride. That being said, the only characters that we waited a long time to see were Ariel (45 minutes) and Mickey and Minnie (60 minutes). We also always make reservations at The Crystal Palace for lunch in the late afternoon. That we we can sit back and relax, including coffee, while we enjoy an all you can eat buffet and the girls get to meet Winnie the Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, and Tigger, too!
This time we did not follow this plan…don’t ask me why. I was confused by the new Fastpass + system and overwhelmed with the new Fantasyland and the significant increase of character Meet and Greets. Plus, I discovered all of these blogs and websites by these self proclaimed Disney lovers, divas, experts, and I figured that since they spent 10 days at a time (how in the hell do you afford that with a family of 4, let alone 5, 6, 7…) at the Disney parks every year that they new what they were talking about.
Rookie mistake! Stick with what you know!!! Here’s what happened: