How many days in each Disney World Park?

How many days in each Disney World Park?

by Vickie
(St. Louis, MO)

Hi Dad...

First thank you for providing such a valuable resource. Your website has been more helpful than many of the books we naively purchased.

We just booked our 6 night Disney stay at the Polynesian for January 2011. We will be traveling with a 2 and 4.5 year old. My question is how many days do you think we need to appropriately see everything at a relaxing pace? We'd like to hit Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom and also spend a day at Sea World.

Thanks so much! I'm sure I might be in touch again with more questions :)

Vickie A.

Dad's Knowledgeable Answer


Vickie,

Wow! Thanks for the kind words. And congratulations on the trip. (I'm a little jealous, I need my own trip to the Polynesian.)

Here's Dad's general guide to how many days in each Disney World Park.
  • Magic Kingdom - To see everything in the Magic Kingdom we like to spend one whole day and part of another. In January, you might see the whole park in one day, but to do it leisurely, I figure 1 +.
  • Epcot - Epcot is a little trickier. You can do all the rides in one day. If you want to take time to visit all of the countries and spend some time in each one you should figure about a day and a half. We will usually spend a full day and have dinner in Epcot on a second evening.
  • Animal Kingdom - The Animal Kingdom takes a full day to see everything. That is a full Animal Kingdom day. Animal Kingdom usually closes at 5:00 or so in January. We will usually stay until closing and then go eat at 'Ohana.
  • Disney's Hollywood Studios - I'm going to add Disney's Hollywood Studios even though it's not on your list. It takes a full day to see everything at the Studios. (Yes it's not a 100% full day, but it's almost a full day).

Dad's Simple Fun Magic Guide to Walt Disney World Planning

 


Your situation is a little different than most visitors. With such young children you will need time each day outside the parks for an afternoon nap. (Don't skimp on this one.) But, on the other hand, you won't be able to ride some of the rides that will have the longest lines. So the above guidelines will still be pretty accurate for your family.

I hope this answers your question. Don't hesitate to ask any other questions. I'm here to help.

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May 08, 2019
Days to budget for adults-only
by: Beef H.

Would you say your advice holds true for an adults-only trip? It will be my spouse and my first trip to WDW as adults (last time I was there I was eight, and my spouse has never been), and keeping that in mind, I was wondering if you think the 1-1.5 days for each park still holds true. We are not into Avatar, so we will probably skip that part of Animal Kingdom, but we love Toy Story and Star Wars, so we may spend more time at Hollywood Studios. Thank you!

Dad Answers

It's a good rule of thumb.

Apr 17, 2019
Older Children
by: Melissa O

Wow I just discovered your site and got lost in it, so much great information I just couldn’t stop clicking on more and more links to other sections! Thank you for this, I know it will be helpful. I found your site researching how much time it to allow for each park and just couldn’t seem find anything close to our kids ages .

We are booked for September 16-18. 2 1/2 days in the parks and 2 nights at All Star Movies Resort (we have always stayed here and enjoyed it, I just can’t get myself to book any other resort). It will be exactly 8 years since we last went to Disney so of course our plans will now revolve around older kids. We will have an 8 year old and 11 year old at the time of travel. We don’t plan to do Epcot this trip due to lack of time. So out of Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom I’m wondering if there is a particular order to do these in? Also on the last day we would like to leave late afternoon early evening so which park would be best to attend this day? I know we used to be able to do one park (Animal Kingdom maybe) in about half to 3/4 of a day. Is this still the case or would Magic Kingdom be best for this day as I recall a lot of it being "Kiddie Land" types of rides and our boys are older now. Thank you.

Dad Answers

Melissa, This is more of an Ask Dad Question, but here's a quick answer. Of the 3 especially in September, right after Star Wars:Galaxy's Edge opens, I would still plan Animal Kingdom as your last day park. The other 2 days, I'd look at park hours, if there's a Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party, for which park to go to.

You'll want to make this trip more of a what does the family want to do. You probably aren't going to see everything in any park so pick and choose.

Jul 24, 2018
How many days?
by: Lars-Kristian

Hi Dad!

Just discovered your site and hoping it will save me from a lot of time planning my families trip to Orlando :)

We´re travelling with to children aged 2 and 4 1/2. We just want to see the stuff that they like. So things like Star Wars is not on our list. They like all of the Disney cartoons and of course ANIMALS. They're NOT interested in the scary rides with a lot of G's ;)

We might visit EPCOT and the corporate sponsorships, but if they don't like it we'll move along.

How many days would you say that we need?

Dad Answers


It's a hard question to answer, but let's give it a go.

Because you have younger children, you are going to want to take time out of the parks each day for rest and relaxation. I'd plan a break between 2 and 5 or so every day. Even with that your touring time will be limited so it will take longer to see things.

Yes, you won't be doing the fast rides, but you will be doing things like Casey Jr. Splash Pad which can take 5 minutes or an hour depending on the kids.

In addition to the attractions, there are a lot of extra little things you'll have to see and do that people that ride the fast rides don't. The 2 daily parades at the Magic Kingdom. Kidcot adventures in the World Showcase. Meet and Greets with characters and princesses, etc.

Also, there's a whole extra world outside of the parks. Most of the hotels have special game time for small children. The swimming pool can be a day long adventure, every day. Ft. Wilderness has pony rides, etc.

All that adds up to you can spend as many days with small children as you do with older kids.

I would plan at least 6 days for your trip. I think you'll have plenty to do.

Feb 09, 2012
Follow up to the above question
by: Annie

Dad, first off, like the above reader noted, your website is amazing! I don't know how I missed it back when I was planning this trip in July 2011, but I'm glad I found it now! We are doing our first trip 3/18-3/23 (I didn't know March was so bad, I just picked it b/c the flights were cheap & it's nice to get away from Chicago winter!)

Anyway, my princess will be 4 & my pirate boy will be 2. I've made my hubby the designated FASTPASS runner & I have pretty much set up my daily park plans (via Touring plans). I was relieved to see my plans look similar to the standards you laid out above: day 1) Disney Hollywood Studios, late arrival around 11-12pm. day 2) Animal Kingdom with early magic hours. day 3) Magic Kingdom, have Bibbidi Boddidi Boutique @ 9am when park open & Cinderella's Royal Table @ 10am. day 4) rest day/pool or Downtown Disney if weather is bad. Also have dinner plans @ Epcot & plan to arrive a little early for a few rides if possible. day 5) Magic Kingdom again with early magic hours.

My questions are: Have I scheduled too much? I've made all my ADR's for each day/meal & I have a character meal every day (except day 1), is that too much? Both my kids will nap in strollers to that's our hope each day. I also wonder if I should change my itinerary on day 1 MK to "late arrival" given our plans that morning? Thanks for your time :-)

Dad's Answer


Annie,

I don't think our plan is too ambitious, especially with the rest day in the middle. I'd stick with the Disney Hollywood Studios thing the first day. For the little ones you can skip Tower of Terror and Rock and Roller Coaster which will get you by a couple of real long lines. You should be fine there, just have your designated FASTPASS runner run to Toy Story Mania as soon as everyone clears the ticket stand.

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