Walt Disney World’s transportation system consists of buses, boats and monorails to shuttle guests from various points on property including theme parks, resorts, water parks, shopping districts and more. The beloved monorail system is a favorite of guests. The monorail system consists of three separate lines. Since debuting in 1971, the monorail trains have traveled enough miles to make over 30 round trip journey’s to the moon! Below you will find 6 things that Walt Disney World insiders love about the monorail. As you read through the list, see if you agree or disagree and let us know by sharing your comments.
“Please stand clear of the doors. Por favor manténganse alejado de las puertas.” There is a certain familiarity consistent with each monorail ride. The feel of the ramp ascending to the platform. The sight and gentle breeze of the monorail arriving or departing. The gates and doors opening and closing. The sounds of the recorded announcements. The exciting thrill as the express monorail travels through the Contemporary Resort on your way to the Magic Kingdom at the beginning of the day and the feel of exhaustion after a long day as you quietly glide back to the Ticket & Transportation Center. You know exactly what to expect and only on rare occasions does a ride on the monorail go unexpectedly. These all make for an expectant and consistent monorail ride.
Each monorail is identified by a single colored stripe on each side of the train. There are currently twelve different colors: Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, black, peach, silver, lime, teal, gold and coral. During the times of special events and occasions you might see a monorail depart from the traditional color it usually travels by and be fitted with a custom wrap. For example, in 2010, monorail coral was wrapped to promote the movie “Tron: Legacy.” Other unique color schemes include marketing monorail black for the release of “Iron Man: 3” as well as monorail teal being converted for the release of “Monsters University. My family and I happened to board monorail black as “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” was being promoted. Monorail creativity is just one of the things insiders love!
4. Cool Features
As if the monorail wasn’t cool enough itself, there are a few neat things that many guests are unaware of. One of those features is the ability to open some of the windows! Yes, you read that right! If you’re bent on wanting to try this, you will have to position yourself just right. As you board your car, make sure you grab a seat next to the window on one of the ends of the car. If you sit on one of the middle benches it won’t work. Once you are in your spot, notice there is a black handle on the side of the window. Simply lift this handle up and a small portion of the window will open toward you inside! While the opening is small, you can stick your fingers out the window during your journey. My children regularly compete with each other for this location as they are small enough to stick their entire hand out the window! Now you’re an insider!
If you arrive at the Ticket & Transportation Center, you have two primary ways to get to the Magic Kingdom, the ferry or the monorail. While each mode of transportation has it’s advantages and disadvantages, one advantage the monorail has over the ferry is that of comfort. While a majority of ferry passengers will be required to stand for the duration of their journey, you have a good chance of scoring a mildly cushioned seat on the monorail. While it might not seem like a big deal now, it is a genuine respite after a long day on your feet. In addition, the monorail is climate controlled. This comes in handy during extremes in weather. A breezy ride on the ferry might feel great on a hot day, but days that are already cold feel even colder on the open waters. Not so on the monorail as it’s always the right temperature.
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An express ride to and from the Magic Kingdom isn’t your only option when it comes to the Walt Disney World monorail system. In fact, it is arguably the most convenient method when traversing to and from Epcot. While you could park hop from the Magic Kingdom to Epcot with your own vehicle, the monorail will transport you right to the gate. If you do not have a car with you, it is a superior way of traveling than taking a bus. In addition, three on-site resorts, the Contemporary, the Grand Floridian and the Polynesian are all connected via monorail. These resorts are highly coveted by guests not just because they are deluxe resorts, but also because they are all connected by the resort monorail loop. The convenience of hoping on and off the monorail is just one other thing insiders love! We only wish the monorail also connected Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom!
1. You’re at Disney World!
When we took our children for their first visit to Walt Disney World, I told them we could take the ferry or the monorail. My oldest daughter asked what a monorail was. I told her it was similar to a subway. As one who has been on subways in Washington D.C., New York City, Chicago and other places, I knew that definition fell short. The monorail is not a subway. It’s your highway in the sky to the Magic Kingdom! While there are other monorail systems in the United States and around the world, none circle the Seven Seas Lagoon, enter into the Contemporary Resort or offer the experience of pulling into Main Street USA! For many, it’s one of the fondest and most unique experiences to a Walt Disney World vacation and it concludes our list as the number one thing Walt Disney World insiders love about the monorail!
What do you think? What do you love about the Walt Disney World monorail? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below! We are waiting to hear from you!