Walt Disney World Anniversary — 50 Favorite Attractions

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In honor of the upcoming 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World, which opened on October 1, 1971, we are highlighting the top 50 of some of our favorite things about the most magical place on earth! This week, we take a look at some of the best attractions, including technological marvels, opening day classics, and fantastic shows.

There are amazing attractions found at each of the four WDW theme parks – Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom. These are some of our favorites (in no particular order), which we think are not to be missed. Please Note: Not all attractions are currently operating due to COVID-19 restrictions or refurbishment schedules.

Make sure to check out our Instagram for even more photos of our favorite attractions!

  1. Walt Disney World Railroad – an important part of Walt’s original vision
  2. Mickey Mouse Meet & Greet – remember: it was all started by a mouse
  3. Jungle Cruise – the corniest jokes this side of the backside of water
  4. Pirates of the Caribbean – an audio-animatronic pirate’s life for me!
  5. Splash Mountain – taking log flumes to the next level in terms of detail and storytelling
  6. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – the wildest ride in the west
  7. Haunted Mansion – 999 happy haunts for a ghoulishly good time
  8. Peter Pan’s Flight – a classic dark ride sprinkled with pixie dust
  9. It’s A Small World – iconic artwork and the world’s catchiest tune
  10. Mickey’s PhilharMagic – an underrated fun-filled 4-D show
  11. Enchanted Tales with Belle – take on a role in this tale as old as time
  12. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – whistle while you work your way through these jewel-filled mines
  13. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – this silly old bear is sure to delightAdventure is out there
  14. Mad Tea Party – pastel patterns adorn these deceptively intense teacups
  15. Dumbo the Flying Elephant – an adorable classic aboard everyone’s favorite elephant
  16. Monster’s, Inc Laugh Floor – an innovative, interactive comedy show featuring Mike Wazowski
  17. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin – defeat Zurg and your seatmate in this interactive ride-through game
  18. Tomorrowland Transit Authority People Mover – sit back and enjoy the view
  19. Space Mountain – fly among the stars in this thrilling indoor coaster
  20. Carousel of Progress – there’s a great big beautiful tomorrow in every scene

  21. Spaceship Earth – journey through time and space in the EPCOT icon
  22. Aquariums at The Seas with Nemo and Friends – a massive and world-class aquarium brimming with sea life
  23. Soarin’ – fly high above some of the world’s most scenic terrains and iconic landmarks
  24. Living with the Land – learn about Disney’s agricultural and environmental initiatives© Sarah Graffam
  25. Journey Into Imagination with Figment – this lovable purple dragon is an EPCOT institution
  26. Mission: Space – experience the feeling of blasting into outer space
  27. Test Track – a few minutes in the life of a crash test dummy
  28. Frozen Ever After – controversial to combine Arendelle with Norway? Yes. A pretty fun dark ride full of favorite characters and music? Also yes.
  29. Voices of Liberty – a talented a cappella group serenading guests with classic American and Disney tunes
  30. Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway – Mickey & Minnie’s first ride-through attraction was worth the wait
  31. Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular – learn how Indy does it with awesome special effects
  32. Muppet*Vision 3D – you can’t help but be happy with Kermit and the gang
  33. Star Tours: The Adventure Continues – the OG Star Wars attraction doesn’t disappoint
  34. Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run – check flying this hunk of junk off your bucket list
  35. Star Wars: Rise of Resistance – an immersive and technologically advanced marvel (on a good day)
  36. Slinky Dog Dash – you’ve got a friend in this fun family coasterDisney Early Morning Magic
  37. Toy Story Mania! – play several 3-D midway-style games with your favorite Pixar pals
  38. Beauty & the Beast: Live on Stage – a beautiful, abridged stage adaptation of a beloved classic
  39. Twilight Zone Tower of Terror – a eerily-themed queue leading up to a series of deadly drops
  40. Rock n’ Roller Coaster – rock out to Aerosmith as you launch at 5 Gs
  41. Fantasmic! – an incredible nighttime show full of fountains, flames, fireworks, and Mickey Mouse
  42. Wilderness Explorers – earn fun badges and learn something new throughout Animal Kingdom
  43. Avatar: Flight of Passage – board a banshee and fly through the floating mountains of Pandora
  44. Na’vi River Journey – the beautiful scenery is the star of this calm boat ride
  45. Festival of the Lion King – a Broadway-caliber celebration of the best of Pride Rock
  46. Kilimanjaro Safaris – explore the African savannah with a new experience every ride
  47. Kali River Rapids – a thrilling raft ride, a serious cool-down, and a message about conservation all in one
  48. Expedition Everest – an elaborately-themed and exciting adventure through mountains and caves

  49. Conservation Station – get up close and personal with Disney’s animal care services
  50. Dinosaur – save the dinosaurs and yourself in this wild prehistoric trek

With so many wonderful attractions at Walt Disney World, there is never a dull moment, even after 50 years. We can’t wait to see what the next 50 will bring!

Did your favorite attractions make the list? Let us know in the comments!

 

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Amy Crockett

Amy Crockett is a native Michigander who works at a library by day and dreams of Disney by night. Planning Disney trips is her favorite thing in the entire world to do (apart from the trip itself)! In addition to all things Disney, she loves reading, musical theatre, playing tennis, traveling, and cheering on the Detroit Tigers.

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