Merry Christmas from Walt Disney World!

| December 25, 2013 | 14 Replies

It’s been 10 years since I moved here to Florida. People always ask me if it has gotten old for me visiting the Walt Disney World parks whenever I want. Today was one of those days when I felt like a little kid experiencing something for the first time.  It just doesn’t get old for me. I decided a number of years ago that I had to visit the parks on Thanksgiving and Christmas. I truly wish all my friends that “get” Walt Disney World could have been there with me.

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Friends said I was crazy for attempting to visit Magic Kingdom on Christmas Day.  I wanted to get there early so I could enjoy the park before it got really crowded.

Let me offer a few words of wisdom if you are going to try this. Try and go early.  The traffic really does start to build and by the time I left Magic Kingdom it was closed to new guests. They do eventually open but it is a shame to be shut out of the park on Christmas Day.

When I approached the auto plaza at Magic Kingdom I had my annual pass and drivers license ready.  I didn’t use my Magic Band but if you have tickets on your band you can use it at the auto plaza.  Just be sure to have identification with you in case you’re asked for it.

When driving through the parking area, be aware that there are usually two lines moving into the parking spots. Don’t jump from line to line because you think the one line is moving faster. You will get a parking spot. Don’t forget to write down the row you are parked in. If you forget where you parked but remember about what time you arrived, a cast member can usually direct you to your row.

When you get to the Ticket and Transportation center remember which tram you rode in on.  Take note if you are dropped off at the Heroes or Villians side. That will be important when you go to leave the park.

DSC_8853Today since it was anticipated to be very busy they were offering bus rides to the Magic Kingdom.  The lines were a walk on compared to the lines for the ferry boats or monorails. I realize it isn’t as exciting but I was inside enjoying the park while people were waiting for a ride on the monorail.

They had the gates open on the right side of the touch point area along with bag check so no need to walk down the path to the normal area. Being aware that this was open saved me time again getting into the park.

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I highly suggest picking a spot in the park and every visit taking a picture there.  You can see the changes over the years.  It’s also a great way to create some family memories.

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When the park is crowded I use the train to get around. I knew I wanted to start in Frontierland so I hopped aboard the train.  It was much quicker than trying to fight the crowds down Main St.  Could I also suggest reading a guide book or reading the information on WDWInfo.com?  It was amazing the amount of misinformation I heard on the train today. Not being aware of where the rides are located can cost you valuable park touring time.

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If you are a resort guest on busy days like this be sure to take advantage of FastPass+ and your MagicBands. It really does help if you are interested in experiencing some of the great attractions in Magic Kingdom.

Once you are in the park just exercise your patience. It can be crowded but nothing beats being in a WDW theme park for the holidays.  I only stayed a few hours but decided to take the Epcot monorail just to see what that park looked like as far as the crowds.

Here are the cars backed up to make the turn towards Magic Kingdom.

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It was a night and day difference between the two parks. Epcot looked empty compared to Magic Kingdom.  If you are planning to visit a park on Christmas day, you might want to consider visiting a different park than the Magic Kingdom.

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I love watching how Walt Disney World handles the increase in visitors on days like today.  If I was grading them I would give them an A+.  It’s easy to look good on low crowd days but they really shine on crazy busy days.

I hope everyone that visited Walt Disney World today had a great time.  I hope you were able to create some lifetime memories!  See you in the parks!


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Category: Disney World

About the Author ()

Kathy Werling discovered Walt Disney World later than most people but has made up for it. Living close to the theme parks hasn't gotten old yet for her. Kathy is an accomplished photographer and is always out finding new and different things to photograph in the Orlando theme parks. Kathy is also part of the Orlando DIS Unplugged Podcast team.
  • glshhi

    Great advice Kathy!
    Thank you and Merry Christmas to you and yours.

  • Jose Serrano

    Great job Kathy. This is exactly what I needed the morning after Christmas Day – love seeing the pictures. A few years ago my family and I went to MK on December 27th and I had never seen that many people in the park. WOW!!! We handled it by being very patient…..you are so right. Merry Christmas to you and Happy New Year.

  • Candy Sonnenberg

    I love the pictures. Excellent job Kathy!

  • Bonnie Fink

    We moved to Kissimmee a year and a half ago to be near Walt Disney World, haven’t got tired of it yet. We’re on Disney Property at least 5 days a week. We had dinner at Liberty Tree Tavern yesturday, no better place for Christmas Dinner. We love the parks on Holidays, you just have to be patient. It’s fun to watch how much fun everyone is having on holidays.

  • disneedmon

    Thanks so much Kathy, my heart was there and thanks to your description my mind caught up! We have never gone home for Christmas (that’s right home is where the heart is) but “get” and love Walt Disney World 24/7. Thanks again

  • Sam Vigorito

    I love your holiday blogs and advice Kathy. We were at WDW for Thanksgiving this year and spent the day at Hollywood Studios before having a traditional feast at Olivia’s. We wondered what a holiday away from home would be like and we loved it. I would’ve done Christmas in a minute! Thanx for sharing.

    • Kathy Werling

      Thank you everyone!!

  • CrazyAuntie

    Kathy, thanks for taking time out from your Christmas celebration to post this. Great information… and I love hearing that living near WDW hasn’t gotten old for you!!
    Maybe some day… :-) :-)

  • Tina McNeil

    Thank You! I agree about Disney! If you get it, you don’t get tired of it. I do have a question though; how did you get the Very high prospective in your photos? It’s like you were on a tower.

  • Sunrise Everyday

    Kathy, I “get” WDW and admire your closeness to my favorite place on earth. It is very hard to explain to people why I don’t fret about going alone and have such a good time at a place that they feel is for kids (not a woman pushing 60). I live in South Florida and had managed for awhile to visit about 3 times a year but have had to back off extra expenses. Might see you in there some time. If you see someone alone in a WDW park, grinning so big that their face might break, that’s me!

  • pat

    Kathy, your blogs are always a pleasure to read. Your continued enthusiasm and love of all things Disney warms the heart. Our trips are few and far between and we’ve never seen the parks at Christmas. Hope to someday. But thank you for sharing. Your words and pictures bring those of us who can’t be there a little closer.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours and to the Dis family!

  • Linda Walker

    great blog and thanks so much for taking the time to bring some Disney to those of us oversees :)

  • Stefanie Bartolomeo

    Thanks for posting this! Great tips & photos! :)

  • AliceMouse

    Thanks, Kathy. You’re very brave. We did New Year’s Eve in Magic Kingdom on our honeymoon and it was insane!! It took me 7 years to convince my husband to go back! Luckily he’s recovered and we now own DVC, have an AP, and have three trips booked for 2014. I really like your tip about taking the train. I usually start in Frontierland as a rule and for some reason it never occurred to me that there is an alternative to booking it down Main Street! I was also not aware of the bus service offered from TTC to MK on peak days. Great article!