Of the four theme parks in Walt Disney World, none is as beloved as the Magic Kingdom where guests can explore different themed lands that bring them on amazing adventures through time, space, and fantasy. Guests who spend time in the park can sail with pirates, interact with ghosts, blast off into space, explore the Wild West, defeat the Evil Emperor Zurg, dive into the sea with Ariel, soar with Dumbo, and fly with Peter Pan. With so much to see and do in the park, part of what makes it so magical for guests are the small and hidden details that bring each experience and area to life. These details are often so blended in that guests overlook them, but they showcase the depth of detail that Imagineers created in the Magic Kingdom. Here are the top twenty tips and secrets to discover in Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom.
1. Castle Mosaic
Cinderella Castle features beautiful architecture and details that make it seem like something out of a true fairy tale. In the corridor that runs through the castle, there are a series of murals that tell the story of Cinderella using gorgeous tiles in all sorts of colors. Guests who take their time passing by the murals can relive important moments from the story of Cinderella and even spot her stepsisters who are literally red with anger and green with envy!
2. Swiss Famliy Treehouse Hidden Mickey
The Swiss Family Treehouse in Adventureland invites guests to climb high above to enjoy the unique home that the Robinson family has created for themselves after being stranded on an island. While working their way towards the top, guests should look at the trunk of the tree to spot a large hidden Mickey that can be found in silhouette.
3. Aladdin’s Spitting Camels
Before landing in Adventureland where they guard The Magic Carpets of Aladdin, the golden spitting camels used to have a home in another Disney Park. The two camels used to be part of an Aladdin themed parade in the former MGM Studios. When the parade was discontinued, they moved to the front entrance of the Soundstage Restaurant before finally moving to their current location in Adventureland.
4. Pirates’ Chess Game
One of the most beloved attractions in the Magic Kingdom is Pirates of the Caribbean which lets guests set sail with some of the most mischievous pirates in the world. While moving though the FastPass queue, guests should look through a set of bars for a chess game being played by a skeletal pair of pirates. The game is set up as an actual stalemate, leaving the pirates stuck playing there for all of eternity.
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Splash Mountain brings guests on a thrilling journey alongside Br’er Rabbit who is off looking for more adventure. Before the final plunge into the Briar Patch, guests pass through the Laughing Place where they can spot a series of gophers who pop up and yell out in glee. The final gopher who pops down from the ceiling yells out “FSU” for Florida State University where many of the Imagineers who worked on the attraction attended school.
6. Tumbleweed’s Shadows
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad brings guests on the wildest ride in the wilderness through the mining town of Tumbleweed. While the town might seem sleepy during the day, guests who whip by it at night can spot the shadows and sounds of the townsfolk having a fun time on the second floor of the saloon.
7. Frontierland Door Dates
As guests move through Frontierland from Splash Mountain towards Liberty Square, they might notice the numbers on many of the building’s doors. These numbers coincide with the year that the architecture of that particular building represents and they move from the early 1700s to the mid 1800s.
8. Haunted Mansion Hidden Mickey
The Haunted Mansion is a favorite attraction of many guests that brings them into the eerie home of nine hundred and ninety nine happy haunts. While moving through the ballroom scene of the attraction, guests should check out the table below where three plates have been arranged to form a classic Hidden Mickey.
9. Mr. Toad’s Gravestone
After exiting the Haunted Mansion, guests should look to the left hand side of the pathway just before passing through the gate back into Liberty Square. On the top of the hill there is a pet cemetery including the gravestone of the late Mr. Toad who used to have his own popular attraction in Fantasyland.
10. Peter Pan’s Bike Traffic
Peter Pan’s Flight is a very popular attraction with guests as it lets them soar high above the streets of London and Neverland with Peter and the Darling children. While flying over London at night, guests can spot the moving headlights of traffic below which are actually just dots of black light paint on moving bike chains!
11. It’s A Small World Hidden Mickey
It’s A Small World brings guests on the happiest cruise that ever sailed to all corners of the globe. While moving through the Africa scene, guests approach a large pink elephant overhead with a lively band playing on top. On the right hand side of the elephant are purple vines which are shaped like a classic Hidden Mickey.
12. Cinderella’s Horse
The Prince Charming Regal Carrousel is the centerpiece of Fantasyland and lets guests board beautifully decorated carousel horses for a whimsical ride around and around accompanied by classic Disney music. While all of the horses are beautiful, one in particular belongs to Cinderella and guests can identify it by a golden ribbon tied in its mane.
13. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Old Figures
One of the most popular attractions in the Magic Kingdom is the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in New Fantasyland. The attraction brings guests into the mines where a million diamonds shine and also gives them a glimpse into the Dwarfs’ cottage where they can be found singing and dancing with Snow White. The dancing and playing figures are actually remnants from the extinct Fantasyland attraction Snow White’s Scary Adventures.
14. Hidden Steamboat Willie
After enjoying a ride on Under the Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid, guests emerge back in New Fantasyland on a pathway that has a steam and flowing water on the right hand side. Guests who pause and check out the rockwork to the left of the water can spot a very hard to find full bodied Hidden Steamboat Willie, ship’s wheel and all, formed by several large rocks.
15. Mr. Toad’s Deed
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh occupies the area that used to be home to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride in Fantasyland, and several tributes to the extinct attraction can be found throughout the current experience. While moving through Owl’s treehouse, guests should look to the left side of their vehicle to spot a portrait of Mr. Toad handing over the deed to Owl.
16. Casey Jr.’s Historical Dates
Storybook Circus features an interactive splash and play area that features Casey Jr. and all of the circus animals on his train. Guests who check out each of the train cars might notice that the feature numbers on their sides. These numbers coincide with the opening years of the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
17. Magnet Power
The Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover is a great attraction to enjoy while spending time in Tomorrowland as it gives guests the chance to kick back and relax for a few minutes while taking in the sights. While many guests like to enjoy the experience, they might not realize that it runs completely on magnetic power! Magnets are imbedded in the track of the attraction to push and pull carts for a seamless and energy saving experience!
18. Carousel of Progress Hidden Mickey
The final scene of Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress showcases the progress of one family as they enjoy the Christmas holidays. While the family is gathered around the tree and in the kitchen, guests can spot several Hidden Mickeys throughout the scene including a nutcracker that looks just like the famous mouse on the mantle to the left hand side.
19. Pollust Prime
Buzz Lightyear’s Space ranger Spin invites guests to join Star Command and help battle the Evil Emperor Zurg by taking aim at his power sources. While moving through the queue, guests should be on the lookout for the planet Pollust Prime which features a land mass that forms a Hidden Mickey in silhouette.
20. Starport 75
Space Mountain is one of the most popular attractions in the Magic Kingdom as it brings guests on an epic adventure through the darkness of outer space. Guests blast off from Starport 75, which might seem like a random name for a spaceport, but actually pays tribute to the year that the attraction opened.