Every fall, the North Carolina State Fair comes to Raleigh. This past year, we decided to take the Bug and I was curious to see if he’d want to go on any rides. We went on a few, but they were all REALLY slow. Anything that appeared remotely fast was met with a “no, thank you” when asked if he wanted to ride.
So when we hit up Disney World for the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, I was a little antsy. I REALLY wanted him to ride Big Thunder Mountain with me. I knew he would love it. I just knew it. So we started with Goofy’s Barnstormer, which we hoped would be an ideal “first” roller coaster.
Guess what? HE THOUGHT IT WAS AWESOME! He rode Barnstormer a total of five times and would have gone on it more, but the rest of us were ready to see more of the Magic Kingdom.
Here are my thoughts on the rides we experienced at the Magic Kingdom when it comes to preschoolers and toddlers.
1. Winnie the Pooh
Pooh is, in my opinion, the ideal first ride for all kids. It’s fun. It’s calm. And bonus on hot days – it’s air conditioned. My two year old enjoyed it just as much as my four year old son.
2. Peter Pan’s Flight
If your child has any fears of the dark, I would avoid this ride. The four year old loved calling out to Wendy, Peter Pan, Captain Hook and the Crocodile, but my two year old was in tears through most of it.
3. It’s a Small World
If you’ve never been to Disney, it’s sort of an indoctrination to ride “It’s a Small World”. Sure, you’ll be humming the song all. day. long. but it’s worth it. Unfortunately, my daughter was still scarred from the Peter Pan ride, so she bailed on the one ride I was sure she’d enjoy.
Oh yeah! Fly in the air with this amazing elephant. Both kids enjoyed going up in the air and controlling how high in the sky they could go. Perfect for any child, unless they don’t like heights.
5. Aladdin’s Magic Carpet
Very similar to Dumbo. Both my children enjoyed going “up, up, up” and “high, high, high in the sky”
6. Goofy’s Barnstormer (must be 35 inches tall)
As I mentioned above, my four year old ADORED this ride. It has just enough speed for kids to get excited, but it’s not scary. A few dips, a couple of sharp turns and you’re back to the starting point.
7. Journey of the Little Mermaid
My husband took Bug on this ride and it’s probably a four year + ride since Ursula might freak out the littles, especially if they’ve never seen the movie.
8. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
This ride is pretty fun as you shoot lasers and score points through the entire ride. It’s more of a game than an actual ride, although the “ship” you ride in does spin.
9. Prince Charming Regal Carousel
I think this was Miss E’s favorite ride. We have a carousel at a local park and both kids love it. So going on one inside Disney World was pretty exciting for them.
10. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
My sister and I rode the ride first just to double check that it would be ok with Bug. The only part that concerned me at all was the noise level. There are two points when the coaster is ascending that it gets ridiculously loud. Bug rode it with his dad and was so excited by the ride, that they promptly got back in line.
Unfortunately, the Mad Tea Party was closed while we were there, and we did not get a chance to ride Pirates of the Caribbean with Bug either. I think he could have handled it (the hubby and I rode it on date night), but he may have been a wee bit scared at times.
As for the Haunted Mansion, I say your child should be at least six, unless they happen to really enjoy being scared.
What are your favorite kid rides at the Magic Kingdom?
Disclosure: I was able to visit the Magic Kingdom as part of the Disney Social Media Moms Conference and received discounted rates and tickets to various events and attractions. My family had a fabulous time and all opinions come from our experience.