As the holidays approach, the parks grow fuller and wait times for the big-name attractions get longer. Fortunately, there are a ton of attractions that are just as good as the ones with long lines, except you normally won’t have to wait for them.
Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
One of the original attractions in Magic Kingdom Park®, the ride located right behind Cinderella Castle is over a century old. It was first built in 1917 and was bought by Walt Disney in the 1960s, but despite its history, the wait rarely gets long. It’s one of the best ways to take in a bit of Disney history, and fortunately you can get on it pretty quickly.
Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress
Another big piece of Disney history, this rotating audio-animatronic show was built by Walt Disney for the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair. The 21-minute show lets in new guests every time it changes scenes, meaning even if you have to wait in line, you won’t be waiting the full duration of the show to get in. The show’s length is perfect if you’re splitting from your party while they take on one of the rides with a longer wait, or if everyone in your group just wants to get out of the weather and spend some time relaxing with one of the park’s oldest attractions.
Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
A longstanding favorite of Disney fans and one of the best ways to see Magic Kingdom Park®, this is one ride that shouldn’t be missed on any vacation. Sometimes the winding line sits right next to the one for Astro Orbiter, so don’t be alarmed if you see a mass of people packed into the center of the Tomorrowland® Area. This is one of those attractions that’s constantly taking guests in, and it normally has one of the shortest waits in the area.
This 3D show has an enormous lobby that takes in scores of guests at a time, and brings with it an awesome 4D show. It’s essentially an old-school Disney cartoon transported into the present, following Donald as he stumbles through a bunch of different Disney films and iconic scenes.
Maharajah Jungle Trek®and Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail
Sometimes the attractions in the DinoLand U.S.A.® Area can have wait times on the shorter side, but if you’re looking to escape the lines in Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park, your safest bet is always going to be the walking trails, where you’ll never have to wait. You’ll see all sorts of animals, getting good views of tigers and up-close looks at gorillas. These walking trails feel like an extension of Kilimanjaro Safaris® Expedition, so if you get off of it wishing you could see more of the animals, the walking trails offer instant access to them.
Walt Disney Presents
A small museum highlighting some of Walt Disney’s past, the Disney’s Hollywood Studios® exhibit can be easy to miss, as it’s tucked away down one of the park’s alleys. Much like the walking trails, guests can easily walk straight in, and at the end there’s a theater with an optional screening of either a clip from an upcoming Disney movie, or, if you’re lucky, a fantastic short film on Walt Disney himself. It’s always worth opting to see the short film when it’s playing, making the rest of the museum just icing on the cake.
If you’re only around the Future World side of Epcot® during the first half of the day, then it might confuse you to see the iconic ball listed as having a short wait time. Earlier in the day, before World Showcase opens, wait times are significantly higher for Spaceship Earth. If you go back to the ride later in the day, though, it’ll often almost be a walk-on attraction. If you’re not spending a FastPass on it, then save the ride for the afternoon when you might be tired of standing in line.
Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros
If the It’s a Small World® Attraction starred Disney characters, took place entirely in a single country, and was dropped straight into one of the best pavilions in World Showcase, this is what you’d get. Being tucked deep inside the Mexico pavilion and not operating on the newest technology means it’s normally pretty easy to hop onto the Gran Fiesta Tour. It’s super fun, and is a little less grating for those who aren’t a fan of It’s a Small World® Attraction’s famous song. If you do love Magic Kingdom® Park’s musical boat ride, though, you’re sure to like this one, too.
Header image ©Disney.