Thursday, 26 January 2012

A Mapping Good Time!

When my dad came home from work this evening, he had under his arm a bunch of park maps that immediately caught my attention. He casually puts them down on the table and walks away. Curious as I am, I wander over and have a peek. Just normal, run of the mill Walt Disney World Park maps.

‘Why do you have these?’ I asked. We have so many of them all over the house; I couldn’t see why he’d brought more home! Had he gone to Walt Disney World and back during his 9 – 5 job today? (If only that was possible!)

He comes back to the table and tells me his friend is about to go to America for a few weeks, and his trip will include a few days at Disney. He’d got the maps off another friend but asked us if we could circle the must-do attractions at each park so they didn’t miss out on the ‘good stuff’. Biro magically appearing out of thin air, I set to work! You don’t have to tell me twice!

When it comes to planning Walt Disney World trips, for myself or for others, my eyes glaze over, my mind fills with pixie dust, show times, the best firework viewing spots and argues with itself over what should come first; Rock n Roller Coaster or Tower of Terror? (Tower of Terror always wins!) With only a day or so in each park, and not wanting to ‘military’ style the itinerary, I picked out, what I feel, are the ‘must do’ attractions and shows in each park that give you maximum park experience, with time for a people watch /Mickey ice cream bar moment or two thrown in!

Here is a peek at what I came up with;


Spaceship Earth - The icon of Epcot, what better way to start your day! Sit back, relax and take a journey through time and space, past, present and future!

Soarin ­– I’ve put a huge circle around this one and in large, capital letters the message: Go here first for fastpasses!

Captain EO – He is a huge Michael Jackson fan so this one cannot be missed!

Electric Umbrella – We’ve all got to stop and eat, and these are probably some of the best Angus burgers on property!

Animal Kingdom

Festival of the Lion King – You can’t beat a sing-a-long of Hakuna Matata with Timon and Pumba, whilst trying desperately to figure out what sound a giraffe makes!

Kilimanjaro Safaris – Get here early, as early as possible, for some of the best animal views!

Expedition Everest – And I’m not just pointing this out for the awesome ride! It’s probably one of my favorite queuing experiences! Did you know the nails used to hang the pictures are actually authentic from the Himalayas? Disney ImaginEars bought up a whole stores supply!

Pangani Forest Exploration Trail – The underwater Hippo viewing is my favorite! It’s usually eerily quiet and a perfect place to relax and take a minute or two!

Hollywood Studios

Star Tours – Grab fast passes, queue and ride. Then use your fast passes. Then get more fast passes! How many moons of Endor can you visit in one day?   

Toy Story Midway Mania – you won’t have to look at a map to find this one, just follow the crowds! Still a huge guest favorite and worth the wait – but better if you can snag a fast pass!

Beauty and the Beast live on stage – A 30 minute Broadway show in the middle of a theme park? All I can say is…be our guest!

Magic Kingdom

Go left! – Not a ride as such, but once the park opens, work your way around from the left! Research shows that people tend to move towards the right, so Tomorrowland will always be busier than Adventureland early in the day! Don’t believe me? Look at how much wider the Tomorrowland bridge is compared to Adventureland and Frontierland!

Haunted Mansion – Make sure you check out the newly renovated queuing area, with its interactive tombs!

Jungle Cruise – One of Walt Disney’s favorite rides, do those adventurers climbing the totem pole look…familiar to you?

Peter Pan’s Flight – You really can fly high above London, second star to the right and straight on till morning. A brilliant aerial voyage through this timeless classic. You’ll be humming ‘you can fly’ all day long! (Unless you then ride, It’s a Small World!)

Tomorrowland Transit Authority (TTA) PeopleMover – A great way to get a look around Tomorrowland that takes you inside Space Mountain, Merchant of Venus and Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger spin!

What would you be circling on the maps for friends and family?

Until next time,


  1. So excited to read your blog about Disney... It is also one of my greatest passions. My list of things to not be missed at WDW (no matter how many times I go some things MUST be enjoyed EVERY time) 1. Tower of Terror at Studios. 2. Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom. 3. Lights Motor Action at Studios. 4. Philarmagic Show at Magic Kingdom (which I heard they're getting rid of... makes me sad bc it's my FAVORITE show in all of WDW) 5. Laugh Floor at Magic Kingdom. Those are just a few of my favorites. :-)

    1. They're getting rid of Philharmagic?? Nooo It can't be! I'll have to look into that, its one of my favorite shows too! I thought it might be safe as the expansion was only going on around it! Eek indeed!

      Tower of terror is probably my fave ride! No matter how many times you ride, it's always different!