The first thing most people plan at Disney World is there bucket list, and then they compare this bucket list to their vacation time. While many people come for the week, there are also a number who come for a long weekend! When time is in short order, it’s no wonder people are curious to know if Magic Kingdom can be done in one day!
Technically, you could see most of what you wanted to do at Magic Kingdom in a day, but for good measure, you should plan two days at Magic Kingdom for the first visit at a minimum and there’s a number of reasons two should be the smallest number you plan for.
There are a lot of factors that can impact your Magic Kingdom day, like the time of year, the weather, the holiday festivities, and how many people you have in your party! Let’s dive into those specifications for a Magic Kingdom itinerary so you’ll know exactly how much time you’ll need at Magic Kingdom for your vacation.
If you only had a handful of things at Magic Kingdom, you could technically do it all in one day. But Disney World is famous for their ‘surprise and delight’ approach to theme parks, and I think you’ll find that there is a lot more to do than you realized in your bucket list planning.
Ready to do Magic Kingdom in just one day? Jump to 5 tips to make it super stress free!
The Best Time of Year to Only Spend one day at Magic Kingdom
There is a right way to do Magic Kingdom and then there is a day that will leave you a flustered dehydrated mess.
The right way to get Magic Kingdom done all in one day is to have a gameplan that involves low crowd times.
The not so right way is to jump into Magic Kingdom in the middle of summer or spring break and assume you’ll get it all done (spoiler alert, this is the day that isn’t going to end well for you!)
If you only have or want to do Magic kingdom in one day, you’ll need to go in one of the following months/weeks:
Last week of February
First two weeks of May
Most of September (see holiday and weather tabs below!)
First two weeks of October
First week of December
These are going to be your lower crowd times, and can really help you enjoy your day at Magic Kingdom without super long lines.
The weather can make or break your Magic Kingdom day!
There is some cool stuff that happens at Magic Kingdom when it rains, and not cool stuff when it snows.
Kinda kidding about the snow, we’ll talk about that below under the holiday specifications for Magic Kindom!
But if you are at Magic Kingdom when it rains, you’ll need this Rainy Day Magic Kingdom Itinerary.
Now, thunderstorms and rainclouds are no strangers to Magic Kingdom. In fact, they have their own rain show that replaces the normal parade!
It’s called the rainy day calvalade and it is so cute and fun… but it’s also not fun because you’ve got wet shoes and a bunch of rides you can’t enjoy! If you are going anytime in the “rainy season” of mid march through october, you should plan two days at Magic Kingdom just to be safe.
The good news is that if you only have one day at Magic Kingdom and it’s rainy, you’ll be able to do everything open because they have to close all the outdoor rides!
The Holidays impact your Magic Kingdom itinerary in a big way!
The holidays at Disney are Halloween, a slice of Thanksgiving, and then Christmas! It is truly magical and I highly recommend that last week of November if you want to see both the Fall and Winter Decorations!
The BIG thing that you need to know about is the reduced hours!
So if you are planning a trip between September and Early January, and Disney World has a Mickey Party planned, then you will be experiencing reduced hours!
Yes friends, they will kick you out of Magic Kingdom early if you don’t have two tickets. One for your regular entrance and one for the hard ticket event party!
In this case, I’d recommend either coming on a non party day OR planning to come on a regular day and then go to the hard ticket party. So you’d be technically spending two days at Magic Kingdom. One full day, and then one 2 pm to 12 am day with the Halloween or Christmas Party.
How many people are in your party for your Magic Kingdom Day?
With three kids in our immediate family (and one on the way!) it can seem overwhelming to spend rope drop in the early AM to the kiss goodnight at magic Kingdom.
Seriously, we’ve only done it once! Spending the entire day at Magic Kingdom and taking advantage of all the time hacks is really a great options for solo travelers, families with just one child, and families with teens and up!
For those with younger kids, especially if you are doing a multi family type celebration, you’ll want to plan to do two or three days at Magic Kingdom to hit your entire bucket list.
Ready to do Magic Kingdom in just one day? Here’s 5 tips you’ll need!
1-Plan to arrive early and stay late. This means using the rope drop technique, and most people start over in fantasy land to get a crack at 7 dwarfs mine train. We have a different strategy though!
Use rope drop to hit up Space Mountain or Buzz Lightyear. Then pop over to seven dwarfs mine train if the wait is under 45 minutes. They always hyper inflate the wait times on this ride!
2.If you can’t catch mine train now, save it for the very last ride of the night, after the fireworks, but before you leave the park!Eat at the off times. So breakfast at 10, or lunch at 1 etc. While most people are going by their clock to tell them to eat because they have travelers fatigue, you can use that to your advantage to grab lower wait times at 8 and 12 because people are in line for food instead.
3.Save all shopping till the very end of the night. They keep the shops open an hour passed closing. They don’t do this for the rides. So once rides close, go shop!
4.Lines are typically the longest in the afternoon as people are hot and looking to get some shade. Use this time to check out tom sawyer’s island, the hall of presidents, the enchanted tiki room, the swiss family robinson and the people mover.
5.Pictures need to be a priority before 10 am. The lines get really long around then, and you will get sweaty and have the sun in your eyes. Get the pictures out of the way so you can enjoy the sites and sounds of Magic Kingdom!
How many days will you actually spend at Magic Kingdom?
For most people, they can get their entire bucket list in one day. There are many exceptions though, like the weather, any special ticket events, and how many people are in your family.
Many people, if they can afford the time or the tickets (or both!) will likely spend more than one day at Magic Kingdom. It’s common for people with young children or those with disabilities to spend multiple days in Magic Kingdom as this is the most accommodating park at Disney World for those groups.