When people hear that Walt Disney World has FOUR parks, they might get a little overwhelmed. Understandably so! In my ideal world, I would be living at Disney so I could take my sweet time at each park – but we all know that isn’t realistic. A lot of people want to plan their park days ahead of their vacation so they can adequately prepare for Fastpasses and dining reservations. So – how much time do you need for each park? Here’s my opinion on each park and how much time you need to devote to each one!
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Magic Kingdom – 1-2 Days
Compared to the other parks, the Magic Kingdom is PACKED with things to do! If you want to try and ride every ride, see all the shows, and meet a few characters along the way you should do 2 days at this classic park. One thing that makes this park a little more time consuming is the wait times. Just about ALL the attractions have waits of about 20 minutes if not more. Since you only get 3 Fastpasses a day, you can’t get all the high ticket rides out of the way in one day. Not without waiting, of course.
If you want to get on as many rides as you can, you simply won’t have time to do it all in one day, not unless you get VERY lucky! I recommend you take your time and spread it all out over 2 days. If not, and you only have one day, make sure you make a list of your MUST DO rides so you don’t miss the rides you want to do the most.
EPCOT – 1-2 Days
Truly, you could spend a WEEK exploring World Showcase alone! However, that’s just not realistic (unless you’re planning a whole trip just for Food and Wine Festival!) So instead, spend 1-2 days there, depending on what you really want to do. If you want to get the full EPCOT experience of the attractions and World Showcase, you should count on spending a lot of time here. While EPCOT doesn’t have as many attractions as the Magic Kingdom (and many will be closed in the coming months for renovations) there is a LOT to explore overall. Interactive exhibits on innovation are scattered all around Future World, and each pavilion has tons to explore at World Showcase.
If you’re looking just to do the attractions, or if you have younger kids, you can probably get away with spending just one day at EPCOT. There are many things for young kids if they can’t do the bigger thrills like Test Track, so you’ll likely still need the whole day.
Hollywood Studios – 1/2 – 1 Day
Don’t get me wrong – I love Hollywood Studios. Still, I can’t ever bring myself to spend an entire day at the park. Planning for this park is also difficult due to the number of “big ticket” attractions they have at this park – and the limited number of Fastpasses you can get for those attractions. I end up having to factor out how much time I’m willing to wait for other thrilling attractions and plan out my day from there.
When it comes to Hollywood Studios, if you want to do EVERYTHING you definitely need a day. Usually, this will be enough to do all the rides and even the shows! This is especially important for Galaxy’s Edge, since the rides currently do not have Fastpasses so you’ll need multiple hours to attain a boarding pass for Rise of the Resistance / factor in time for Smugglers Run. Otherwise, plan out what is on your MUST DO list and plan your Fastpasses around those attractions.
Animal Kingdom – 1 Day
When planning your day at Animal Kingdom there’s only one Fastpass you need to be looking for – Flight of Passage! This ride easily gets wait times of 2 hours on most days, so this will cut down a significant time hurdle in your plan for the day. Everything else has wait times usually less than an hour – even Expedition Everest. The one ride that sometimes gets larger wait times in the summer is the Kali River Rapids because people want a relief from the heat!
Due to the extended hours, it’s now very easy to do all of Animal Kingdom in one day. However, if you love the animals you may want to do a few more!
There you go! This is my rough guide to answer the question – how much time do you need at each Disney park? This is my personal preference – some people may disagree and want more time in certain parks over others. However, if you’re new to the parks, this is a good baseline to start with!
To see these travel plans in action be sure to check out my YouTube channel and my video about this very subject!
Don’t forget to check out my favorite Disney guidebook – the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. They have lots of example travel plans that can help you plan out your day if you’re a new Disney planner. They have one for Disneyland too!
Which park is the one you could spend DAYS at if you wanted? Let me know in the comments below! And don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter! You’ll get my FREE WDW Planning Checklist as a thank you when you sign up!
Taylor Shipp says
You can get more than 3 Fastpasses in a day! After you use your first 3 you can keep selecting one at a time. It will be hard to get big ticket items but can help at Magic Kingdom to cut some wait times down.