Choosing the Right Disney Park for You: Figuring out Which Disney Theme Park to Go To

Choosing the Right Disney Park for You Figuring out Which Disney Theme Park to Go To

The Walt Disney World Resort has as much land as the city of Manhattan. This incredible expanse of theme park territory is home to an almost overwhelming amount of things to do, including four different theme parks. For many people, devoting four entire days to spend at each one just isn’t feasible. With so much going on in the Orlando area and so few days to be there, you’re probably wondering “which park should I pick?”. Today, I’m going to try to help solve that problem. In this blog, I’ll be taking you through each of the Disney Parks and the type of person or group that they’re best for. Even though they all reside in the mouse kingdom, each of these theme parks has a completely unique identity and style. There is so much more out there nowadays than just your standard (although great) Magic Kingdom trip, so you’re going to want to do some research before picking out of a hat. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place!

Magic Kingdom: Perfect for Families with Children and Nostalgics

By far the most popular and iconic, I chose to start us off with the Magic Kingdom since this is where most people go by default. I’m not saying this is a bad thing, the park has earned its dominance for good reason. But, you may want to scroll further if the unabashedly corny fantasy and magic isn’t your forte. 

Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom was the first theme park built in Orlando, and was fashioned as a larger successor to Disneyland in California, adopting it’s layout and classic attractions on a bigger scale. This park has all the classic Disney magic you can ask for. If you’re looking for the iconic attractions and the whimsical themes that Disney built a name out of, look no further. 

The park was created for families, and 50 years later it still holds true to that. If you’re taking your family, especially with younger children, Magic Kingdom is the theme park to go to. This one has the most rides out of the four, and a large variety to suit all ages. From Space Mountain to Small World, everyone in the family will have something that’s right up their alley. For a more diverse group of ages and styles, you can’t go wrong with the Magic Kingdom. 

Magic Kingdom attractions
Magic Kingdom attractions

Another main draw of Magic Kingdom is nostalgia. The park is filled with attractions and experiences that have been there for almost 50 years. These timeless rides have been enjoyed for generations, and over the years they’ve aged like fine wine. There’s something truly amazing about getting to enjoy the same rides you went on as a kid with your children, and that type of experience is available all over the Magic Kingdom. You really do feel like a kid again. That being said, if you don’t have that nostalgia with the rose-colored lenses, some of the older attractions may feel a bit dated and underwhelming.

Magic Kingdom rollercoster
Magic Kingdom rollercoster

When you think of Disney World, the silhouette of Cinderella Castle immediately comes to mind. A lot of occasional visitors to Disney World solely choose the Magic Kingdom for their Disney day since it’s the one they know. However, I’d like to challenge you to step outside of the Magic Kingdom-sized box and consider some of the other fantastic theme parks that Disney has to offer. 

Epcot: The Adult Park

Don’t let the header jar you. Yes, Epcot does have things to do for kids like every Disney Park. But being honest, Epcot’s themes of history, culture, and technology may not resonate with your child’s fascination with pirates or princesses. However, this park is filled with amazing food and experiences that groups a little more grown up can appreciate. 

Epcot
Epcot

If you’re planning on a Disney day with a group of adults or older kids, Epcot may be a perfect fit for you. The park is split into Future World (a display of technology and human achievement) and World Showcase (a collection of 11 pavilions each representing a different country). Future World is more ride-centric with thrills such as Test Track and more relaxing adventures like Soarin’Around the World. However, if you’re looking to go on big rides, Epcot may not be the park for you. There aren’t many, and most are mainly slower and story-driven. What the park lacks in rides it makes up for with it’s dining, drinks, and pavilions to explore. It’s a slower-paced park that’s meant to be wandered. A very different vibe than your average theme park, but a welcome one.

Now, I’ll get into the stuff that makes Epcot shine. Dining in this theme park is probably the best out of any in the world. If you’re a foodie, this is your place. Each of the countries has some amazing dining options where you’ll get a genuine taste of the food there. Food items range from your typical pastas in Italy to some more adventurous lesser-known delicacies in the Morocco pavilion. Whatever you’re in the mood to eat, there’s a way to get it at Epcot. The same thing goes for alcohol. Adult drinks enjoyed by natives in all of the 11 countries are sold at the park, and they’re delicious. In recent years, “drinking around the world” (one drink at each country) has become a popular Disney adult activity if you’re up to the task. By the end of it, I guarantee you will shed a tear during that late night ride on Soarin’. 

Epcot dining options
Epcot dining options

Seasonal festivals have also become a staple of Epcot. This is especially true of the Food and Wine Festival (for obvious reasons). Now, other festivals such as the Flower and Garden Festival, and the Festival of the Arts also provide special offerings to visitors throughout the year. These festivals are great times to visit depending on what your group is into, so plan accordingly! 

Hollywood Studios: For Thrill-Seekers and Star Wars Fans 

Hollywood Studios has undergone some massive changes in the past few years that have really added to the experiences there-especially if you’re a Star Wars fan. If you haven’t been in the last couple of years, you’re really in for a surprise. Widely known as the more thrill-heavy older kids park, Hollywood Studios does deliver on its promise of large rides while also adding some kid-friendly attractions in the past few years. 

Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios

This park is based around movie properties and recognizable franchises such as Star Wars, Toy Story, and the Muppets. Recently, Disney has built large new lands that fully immerse you into the story of the films (I’ll get more into that later). Hollywood Studios has plenty of big rides. At this park, you’re going to want to go on attractions. They’ve managed to include several kid-friendly rides to the mix as well with the recent creation of Toy Story Land and Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. However, the main draw is going to be the big attractions such as Rock N’ Rollercoaster, Tower of Terror, and the new Star Wars Rides. 

Speaking of which, it’s time to talk about the elephant in the room: Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. The largest theme park expansion in Disney parks history, Star Wars Land is everything a fan can dream about and more. The land completely transports you to a new planet in the Star Wars universe named Batuu. Serving as a bustling starport on the edge of the Outer Rim, Batuu is home to extraterrestrial shops, dining areas, and even the Millenium Falcon! 

Hollywood Studios by Star Wars fans
Hollywood Studios by Star Wars fans

The two rides here are Millenium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run, and Rise of the Resistance. The first is a simulator that lets you fulfill the dream of all Star Wars fans: to pilot the Millenium Falcon. Pretty self explanatory, and every bit as cool as it sounds. The second, Rise of the Resistance, is a fast-paced trackless ride through a Star Destroyer. Without a doubt, this one is the most advanced, immersive ride Disney had ever concocted. Both of these rides are fantastic and are must-sees. If you like Star Wars, a trip to Hollywood Studios is almost a necessity. With all the new things to see, you’ll definitely have an action-packed day.

Animal Kingdom: For Adventurers and Animal-Lovers

Last but not least is Animal Kingdom, in my opinion the most underrated of the four. The park has a lot to offer, now more than ever, and it’s far from just a zoo. The park is designed for the adventurer, with long winding paths and lots of trees to reinforce the nature theme. The design team for the park spent months traveling through Africa and Asia to bring lands inspired by these continents to life. These theme park lands are carefully curated using real props the team found during their expeditions to make it as authentic as possible. 

Animal Kingdom
Animal Kingdom

The attention to detail in Animal Kingdom is second to none, and the whole park is meant to be explored. The new Avatar land in the park only continues this trend, completely recreating the planet from the movie with beautiful walkways that make you feel like you’re walking through an alien forest. The entire park is incredibly beautiful, truly fulfilling its purpose of showcasing nature’s beauty. With rugged lands and nature surrounding you at every turn, Animal Kingdom is made with the adventurer in mind. Slightly older kids may be able to get the most out of this park since they’ll be able to ride a lot of the rides that are a bit more intense. 

Animal Kingdom wildlife
Animal Kingdom wildlife

That being said, the park also boasts an impressive amount of wildlife and has some great experiences to set it apart from the average zoo. Kilimanjaro Safaris takes you on a tour through Disney’s manmade savannah and allows you to go on a real open-air safari with close encounters of the animals. The cool thing about this attraction is that no two ride’s are the same, and you’ll always be seeing different animals on your trip (Pro tip: the animals are more active in the morning or in the evening, so these are the best times to go on the ride). The animal trails throughout the park are also well themed and have a great collection of animals while also being very educational. They are well worth it for the animal lovers in your group. Overall, Animal Kingdom is a good park for people of all ages who are looking for a unique, adventurous theme park experience. 

Final Remarks 

All four of the Disney theme parks have something for everyone, and if you have the chance I’d recommend visiting all four. With all of the additions the different parks have gotten in the last few years, Disney certainly has made it hard to choose. 

However, in this article I hope I’ve given you a chance to narrow down your list if you need to pick. Only you know the type of people in your group and the types of things they’d like to do on their vacation, and I can confidently say that any park is a good pick. Wherever you end up, I hope you have an amazing trip!

The Disney Resort is right in the heart of the biggest convention and trade show scene in the world! If you’re in the Orlando area attending a convention and are in need of any assistance with a trade show booth, check out Everything Tradeshows! The one-stop-shop for all things trade show design and installation. 

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