Have you ever noticed that some Disney attractions are just better when you ride them at night? When the sun sets at Walt Disney World a whole new world comes alive throughout the parks. Most noticeably is the Magic Kingdom, each land around the park lights up the night in its own special way. We are going to walk through our favorite Magic Kingdom rides at night.
Under the Sea, Journey of The Little Mermaid
Why did Under the Sea wind up at Number 10? Well, it’s actually because the attraction itself takes place indoors, however, the exterior is so well lit that it deserves a place on our Top 10 Attractions to ride at Night!
Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
Do we love the carousel? Absolutely! It brings us back to a simpler time of the past and allows some of us to really focus on the beginnings of the Disney Parks. Why is it better at night? Well besides the lights…it’s actually quieter! With families (usually) calling it an early night, the bigger kids amongst us get a chance to search for Cinderella’s horse on the Regal Carrousel!
Liberty Belle Riverboat
The Liberty Belle Riverboat usually closes early nightly, but if you have the opportunity to make the trip around Rivers of America when the sun is going down…you’re in for such a treat!
Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, Tom Sawyers Island and of course the Haunted Mansion…PHOTOS GALORE! Or, you can just enjoy the fact that you’re only about 500 feet away from Cinderella’s Castle and put it all in perspective:)
Dumbo the Flying Elephant
When Dumbo moved from Fantasyland into their new location in New Fantasyland within the walls of Storybook Circus, we were hesitant to see how the attraction would fare after the sun went down.
Not only did the attraction keep the original charm but it “plus-ed” the entire area by utilizing amazing lighting techniques! Some of our favorite photos are taken while riding Dumbo!
Is the Astro Orbiter one of our favorite attractions in the Magic Kingdom? Nope. In fact, we feel as though it needs a huge overhaul to satisfy the location within the most popular theme park in the world!
That being said, the neon abundance within Tomorrowland is absolutely spectacular when the sun goes down. The best place to see it is by far is from the rockets on the Orbiter! Oh, and the lines are usually manageable during Extra Magic Hours:)
On the opposite scale of entertainment is Splash Mountain. This classic Disney attraction is a perfect blend of story-telling and thrills…and when you mix that with dusk…amazing!
The main suggestion that we have is to bring a poncho with you for this ride, even if it’s not raining. It gets a little chilly when the sun goes down and you’re soaked from a 60ft drop!
My first ride on the Jungle Cruise was at night and ever since that experience, an 8 pm Jungle Cruise FastPass+ reservation has been the norm. Not only do you get a more “spooky and eerie” river adventure, but the Skippers are a little looser on their storytelling and that translates into a hilarious and memorable experience for everyone in the boat!
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Probably the best overall attraction (queue line, ride vehicle, thrill factor, family friendly) within the Magic Kingdom, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is by far and away a better experience when the sun goes down. You get the extra details that the Imagineers hid in the background that most guests miss during the daylight.
Big Thunder Mountain
Arguably the best “Mountain” in the Magic Kingdom, Big Thunder’s charm is brought to an entirely new and fantastic level at night. The rock-work is as close to a Radiator Springs on the East Coast that we’ll get…until the Cars franchise makes its way out here in a big bad way!
Tomorrowland Transit Authority
By far, the Tomorrowland Transit Authority is the best attraction to ride at night!
- You get the full neon-amazement of Tomorrowland after the sun goes down
- The lines are always a walk-on!
- …just do it! You’ll thank us:)
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!