by Jasper Conway
(Laura’s note: I’m turning the blog over today to one of my favorite guest posters, Jasper. He had some help from little brother Sam.)
My family just spent 5 days at Disney World in Orlando. One of the biggest reasons people go to Disney is the rides! Here is a list of 25 rides we went on during our Disney World adventure, ranked by how good they are — worst to best — with my suggestions of how long you should be willing to wait in line.
Important to note: We did not go on Space Mountain, the Tower of Terror, Expedition Everest, Splash Mountain, and several other favorites. This is just a ranking of the ones we did!
25. Carousel/Magic Kingdom. It’s OK, but it’s just like every other carousel. Worth waiting: 5 minutes.
24. Living with the Land/Epcot. A little educational boat ride we went on while waiting for a FastPass. Very boring at times, but it can be interesting to see the foods we eat as plants. Worth waiting: 10 minutes.
23. Astro Orbiter/Magic Kingdom. There is a very small seat for two people in a rocket that goes around in circles up in the air. We could barely fit, so a little uncomfortable. You have to go up in an elevator, which takes time, and it’s pretty short in the end. Worth waiting: 10 minutes.
22. Jungle Cruise/Magic Kingdom. A boat ride with jokes that are funny…the first time. Nothing really interesting. Worth waiting: 10 minutes.
21. Frozen Ever After/Epcot. A boat ride in the Norway pavilion through Frozen scenes. In the end, it’s quick and the story ends before you know it. Sadly this ride has too long of lines for what it’s worth. Worth waiting: 20 minutes (but the lines average about 60, and you won’t get lower than 40).
20. Ariel’s Journey/Magic Kingdom. Travel on a seashell through the story of the Little Mermaid. A nice ride but just a normal attraction that’s not really special. Worth waiting: 20 minutes.
19. The Seas with Nemo and Friends/Epcot. A nice trip to see Nemo and his pals. This is a nice attraction to do when you have some extra time, as the aquarium at the end is fun for parents and kids. Worth waiting: 20 minutes.
18. It’s a Small World/Magic Kingdom. A boat ride through international scenes of characters singing. It’s considered a classic, but kind of repetitive. Worth waiting: 20 minutes.
17. Spaceship Earth/Epcot. This ride through the Epcot dome shares knowledge about how we created technology, and is a good and fun attraction, though not amazing. Worth waiting: 20 minutes.
16. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. A nice calm ride for kids through scenes from the Winnie the Pooh cartoons. Worth waiting: 25 minutes.
15. Na’avi River Journey/Animal Kingdom. Special effects and beauty make this ride a calm and peaceful trip through Pandora. Not nearly as good as nearby Avatar Flight of Passage, so use your FastPass for that one. Worth waiting: 40 minutes (the lines are usually longer, but can dip to 40 minutes in the last hour of the day).
14. Buzz Lightyear/Magic Kingdom. A shooting ride where you fire at targets (and Zurg). Good for all ages to see how much you can score. Worth waiting: 20 minutes.
13. Peter Pan’s Flight/Magic Kingdom. A cool ride through London and Neverland. You’re in a boat seeing the whole story from above. Worth waiting: 40 minutes (Laura’s note: which means you need a FastPass. I never saw it under about 60).
12. Pirates of the Caribbean/Magic Kingdom. A classic, if disconcerting at times. Make sure your kids are OK with scenes of pirate violence. Try to find Jack Sparrow! Worth waiting: 25 minutes.
11. Dinosaur/Animal Kingdom. A journey 65 million years into the past to see life-sized dinosaurs. Fun, but a little jumpy and scary at times as you try not to get hit by the dinosaur-destroying meteor. Worth waiting: 30 minutes.
10. Toy Story Mania/Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This is a better shooting game than Buzz as you do carnival type games and compete to get the best score in your group. Worth waiting: 35 minutes (Laura’s note: rare during the day; aim for evening).
9. Star Tours/Disney Hollywood Studios. Fly through a simulated Star Wars world. This ride is different every time and it makes a good experience as you bump around and barely escape the Empire. Worth waiting: 25 minutes.
8. Seven Dwarves Mine Train/Magic Kingdom. A kids’ coaster that is exciting and fun. You get to see the dwarves at work in the mines. Worth waiting: 55 minutes (Laura’s note: rarely happens — so get a FastPass).
7. Kilimanjaro Safari/Animal Kingdom. See all the animals of Africa on this safari ride. Worth waiting: 35 minutes.
6. Slinky Dog Dash/Disney’s Hollywood Studios. An exciting acceleration coaster that makes you put your hands up in the air and have fun going through turns and mild drops. Worth waiting: 50 minutes (Laura’s note: FastPass or last hour of the day).
5. Big Thunder Mountain Railway/Magic Kingdom. An extremely fun roller coaster where you pretend to be on a runaway mine train. It will make you want to do it again and again! Worth waiting: 50 minutes.
4. Soarin’/Epcot. Incredible, breath-taking experience as you soar around the world. Amazing for everyone (kids over 40 inches and adults). Worth waiting: 40 minutes.
3. Test Track/Epcot. You design your own car, but the best part is fast racing down the track at 65 miles per hour. Worth waiting: 55 minutes.
2. Rock ‘n Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith/Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The only Disney coaster with inversions, this ride accelerates fast, has great scenery, and cool music. Worth waiting: 80 minutes.
1. Avatar Flight of Passage/Animal Kingdom. Fly on a banshee over Pandora. This is the best ride at Disney, and is simply incredible. Worth waiting: 150 minutes (Laura’s note: and it will be 150 minutes right up until the park closes! Get a FastPass for sure!)
5 thoughts on “Jasper’s Disney ride rankings”
This is an excellent review of DisneyWorld attractions. Well done.
I’m curious, what are “inversions” on the Rock n Roller Coaster? I’m not up on roller coaster elements.
@Barb – when you go upside down 🙂
I love this method of ranking rides! Excellent cost-benefit analysis.
I kind of sort of hate roller coasters a little bit, but these were great reviews. (I do love Soarin’. That’s about as much as my vestibular system can handle . . .)
I loved Jasper’s assessment! This has inspired me to have my kids write up their own ranking 🙂 You should do these every time you all go to Disney; I think it will be interesting to see how his preferences change as he gets older. So glad you all had fun on the trip, and thanks for sharing!