Home Blog Page 3

EPIC Universal Inspired Face Masks

Universal Studios Face Masks - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Welcome to 2021! On top of staying safe, these Universal-inspired Fan-designed face masks will keep you close to the magic!

We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, Steps to Magic may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

Galaxy Defender – Men in Black Alien Attack Mask

Galaxy Defender - Men in Black Alien Attack Mask
Galaxy Defender – Men in Black Alien Attack Mask

Are you a Galaxy Defender? I tend to hang out in the Cosmically Average tier, but no judging over here!

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!

Mr. DNA Mask

Mr. DNA Mask
Mr. DNA Mask

Mr DNA is making a comeback with the new Jurassic World section in Islands of Adventure, because who doesn’t love the minor characters with mass appeal?

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!

Borgin and Burkes Mask

Borgin and Burkes Mask
Borgin and Burkes Mask

Knockturn Alley is a hidden gem in Diagon Alley – little spookier and well worth the adventure!

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!

Eye On Springfield Mask

Eye On Springfield Mask
Eye On Springfield Mask

Kent Brockman deserves more attention

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!


Article Continues Below

Don’t Blame Me I Voted for Kodos Mask

Don't Blame Me I Voted for Kodos Mask
Don’t Blame Me I Voted for Kodos Mask

…timely and relevant.

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!

I WILL ALWAYS WEAR MY MASK MASK

I WILL ALWAYS WEAR MY MASK Mask
I WILL ALWAYS WEAR MY MASK Mask

I will always wear my mask. Say it, wear it, know it!

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!


Article Continues Below

Nickelodeon Studios Crew – Universal Florida Mask

Nickelodeon Studios Crew – Universal Florida Mask

Nickelodeon Studios Crew – Universal Florida

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!

Be Excellent to Each Other Mask

Be Excellent to Each Other Mask
Be Excellent to Each Other Mask

The Wyld Stallyns can save the world

Get it from TeePublic: Available in all sorts of colors, sizes and designs!


Want more? Check out our fav Universal Shirts list! If you really want to add some serious shirt options, check out our shirt content for even more!

EPCOT Acronym

Spaceship Earth at EPCOT (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

The name of a theme park is important. It brings the guest into the world in which they are going to experience, from a land of Magic to a kingdom of animals and beyond. This is why it’s fun to ask folks who are walking around Walt Disney World’s 1982 addition exactly what the name stands for.

What does EPCOT stand for?

Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow

Alternate Acronyms for EPCOT

  • Every Person Comes Out Tired
  • Employee Paycheck Comes On Tuesday
  • Every Parent Carries Out Toddlers
  • Employee Polyester Costumes of Torture
  • Every Person Comes On Tuesday
  • Every Pocket Comes out Thinner

These are funny because there is truth to each of them. Let’s do a quick run through!


Article Continues Below

Every Person Comes Out Tired

When you’re walking around the Magic Kingdom or Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you may not feel the burn because you’re going from one land to another without going in a full circle. With EPCOT’s World Showcase however, you pick a starting location (Mexico or Canada) and just walk. It’s a 1.2 mile adventure with no shade and pavilions that focus on food & shopping vs attractions.

You will be tired when you end your day at EPCOT!

Employee Paycheck Comes On Tuesday

Inside baseball, but cast members at Disney World get paycheques and direct deposits on Tuesdays. It’s a great way to teach new CMs when to expect that sweet grocery funds.

Every Parent Carries Out Toddlers

Remember how I mentioned that the walk around World Showcase was 1.2 miles? Well if you’re in a stroller…it’s the perfect time for a nap. The other part of this acronym that amuses me is the law that states that you have to pack up your stroller before getting on a Disney Bus – which means that you literally have to carry your children after fireworks because they’re way past their bedtime!

Employee Polyester Costumes of Torture

This is a tough one because my costume was always pretty good. I had shorts and a shirt, with a jacket and pants in the winter – but I know for a fact that friends from other work locations had horrible luck with their costumes.

The excitement from wearing a Disney World costume goes away when it’s 100% humidity!

Every Person Comes On Tuesday

If your vacation starts on Monday, the first park that you want to be at is the Magic Kingdom. This means that traditionally…your second day was at EPCOT.

This has changed over the years due to the opening of new lands and offerings, like Pandora: The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Every Pocket Comes out Thinner

Even if you have a budget and take our tips on things like dining, resorts and souvenirs – you’ll be spending a lot of money while on a Disney World vacation. This means that, in fact, your pocket will be thinner when you leave (but that’s not a bad thing!)


What are some of the other acronyms that you’ve heard for “EPCOT”? Let me know over on Instagram @StepstoMagic and I’ll add them to the list!

The Best Magic Kingdom Indoor Attractions

Hall of Presidents at the Magic Kingdom
Hall of Presidents at the Magic Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

From rain to air conditioning, the idea of spending time indoors in the Magic Kingdom is a huge part of trip planning. You should know exactly where you can escape the elements and recharge.

Main Street USA

Most folks would jump over Main Street USA when thinking about indoor attractions, but you’re actually able to spend a decent amount of time indoors in this area.

  • Meeting Mickey Mouse at Town Square Theatre
  • Shopping in the Emporium
  • Standing in line at Starbucks;)

Adventureland

When you’re walking from Cinderella Castle to the left, you’re going to hit Adventureland first. Most of the major attractions are indoor or “covered”, but it’ll be up to you to decide where to hide!

  • Pirates of the Caribbean – Fully indoor
  • Jungle Cruise – Covered queue line and covered boats
  • Enchanted Tiki Room – Covered queue line and indoor show

Article Continues Below

Frontierland

Out of all the lands, you’ll probably want to avoid this area of the park if you’re looking for indoor experiences.

  • Country Bear Jamboree – Fully indoor
  • Frontierland Shooting Gallery – Covered area

Liberty Square

100% of the experiences are indoor or covered, but you’re not going to be alone if you’re thinking about hitting up this land.

  • Haunted Mansion – Covered queue line and indoor attraction
  • Hall of Presidents – Fully indoor experience
  • Liberty Square Riverboat – The boat has covered areas on the decks
  • Momento Mori – Best shop in Walt Disney World!
  • Columbia Harbour House – Awesome quick service restaurant with plenty of seating

Fantasyland

Although most of the experiences are indoor, it’s also one of the busiest lands in the parks at all times. Be prepared to be stuck with families and a lot of crying guests!

  • Peter Pan’s Flight – Fully indoor experience
  • it’s a Small World – Fully indoor experience
  • Mickey’s Philharmagic – Fully indoor show
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Princess Fairytale Hall – Character meet & greet indoors
  • Prince Charming Regal Carousel – Covered experience

New Fantasyland

Although on paper, New Fantasyland is perfect to ride out the weather…it’s actually one of the hardest to maneuver due to the sheer size and how far away everything is.

  • Enchanted Tales with Belle – Outdoor queue with indoor show
  • Be Our Guest – Outdoor queue with a large indoor restaurant (if you have an Advanced Dining Reservation)
  • Under the Sea Journey of the Little Mermaid – Indoor/Outdoor queue with an indoor attraction.
  • Meeting Ariel – Indoor meet & greet
  • Pete’s Silly Sideshow – Indoor meet & greet

Tomorrowland

There’s only one experience that is fully outdoors with no covering, with the Astro Orbiter being up on the 3rd floor of the same building that houses the Tomorrowland Transit Authority and The Lunching Pad.

  • Space Mountain – Fully indoor experience
  • Buzz Lightyear Spin – Fully indoor experience
  • Monsters INC Laugh floor – Fully indoor show
  • Tomorrowland Transit Authority – covered experience

Article Continues Below

Magic Kingdom Indoor Attraction Recommendations

Pirates of the Caribbean (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Shows

  • Mickey’s Philharmagic
  • Monsters Inc Laugh Floor

Attractions

  • Haunted Mansion
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Journey of the Little Mermaid

Restaurants

  • Columbia Harbour House
  • Be Our Guest

Hope this was helpful! If you have any ideas, please feel free to share them with me over on instagram @SteptoMagic!

5 places for a Fantastic Breakfast in the Magic Kingdom

Main Street Bakery Sign
Main Street Bakery - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Sleepy Hallow

Sleepy Hallow is the home of waffles, and they’re really good at making them. The first thing that most people think about when it comes to Disney is the food, so why not start out the day with a highlight? From Mickey Waffles with fruit to the Funnel Cake with Strawberries & whipped cream…you’re in good company when you’re in Liberty Square with something sweet.

Gaston’s Tavern

Go for a walk when you first hit up the Magic Kingdom, because you really want to get on a couple rides before sitting down for a substantial meal. One of the best spots to grab a quick breakfast is at Gaston’s Tavern, as the opportunity to split a Giant cinnamon roll and Le Fou’s Brew with your family will give you all the energy needed. Besides, this spot in New Fantasyland has awesome air conditioning and lots of room to plot out your next adventure.


Article Continues Below

Main Street Bakery

Right off Main Street USA is the Magic Kingdom’s Starbucks location. It’s #3 because it’s always packed, due to it’s location at the front of the park, but it’s still reliable. We tend to grab caffeine and a croissant or banana loaf, because having something in your tummy will always help when you’re overwhelmed with the feeling of being in the Magic Kingdom!

Aloha Isle

Dole whip is breakfast! Stop by Aloha Isle and start your day out with a “fruit cup that happens to be blended”. All your friends and family will be jealous and give you mad respect for not thinking that pineapple is part of a healthy breakfast. 😉

Crystal Palace

Table service meals are difficult to justify for breakfast, due to the cost and the sheer size of the offerings. That being said, the Magic Kingdom has a number reservation options for early mornings.

Character dining with Pooh and Friends at the Crystal Palace is a hit for kids, but please please please keep an eye out on the budget as this meal can jump really quickly when you take into account that you could be spending $30-60 for Mickey waffles. We’ve had success when using the Disney Dining Plan, as this location is a one table service credit!


Article Continues Below

Honorable Mentions

  • Be Our Guest (Quick Service Breakfast)
  • Liberty Square Market (Grab n Go)
  • Cinderella’s Royal Table (Table Service)

Steps to Magic Hidden Tip

If you’re taking an UBER to the Magic Kingdom, then you’re going to want to have your destination be “Disney’s Contemporary Resort”. The nice thing about this, is that you can hop inside to The Contempo Cafe, which is one of our favorite food spots on property. Sure, it’s not exactly the Magic Kingdom, but you’re a hop skip and a jump to the turnstiles!

5 ways to Sightsee via complimentary transportation in Disney World

Disney Skyliner - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Skyliner

Think about trying Disney’s Skyliner when thinking about your adventures away from the theme parks. All you have to do is board at EPCOT or Disney’s Hollywood Studios before checking out a bunch of resorts. The Skyliner operates daily and will give you access to 4 resorts within 15-minutes of your departure!

Disney’s Skyliner
Official Disney

Friendship Boats

The idea of sightseeing on Disney World property is to explore things from unique views to get some awesome photos! The ability to explore the resort area between EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios by water is definitely worth checking out. The best part about this system is that you can disembark at the Swan & Dolphin, Boardwalk or Yacht & Beach resorts to explore and just catch the next boat (or walk) to your destination.

Friendship Boats
Official Disney


Article Continues Below

Monorail

The trip from EPCOT to the Ticket and Transportation Centre is less about sightseeing than to the Magic Kingdom. Just make sure that you don’t take the Express Monorail route and voila…full access to the Grand Floridian, Polynesian Village and the Contemporary Resort.

Monorail
Official Disney

Motor launches and Cruisers

The exploration of the Magic Kingdom area by water is awesome! Spending an afternoon “resort hopping” while going from the docks at the various Deluxe Hotels will allow you the opportunity to really get the full view. Wilderness Lodge and Fort Wilderness are definitely better when you arrive via boat vs a bus.

Disney Watercraft


Article Continues Below

Buses

There are bus routes that provide access to unique locations, on top of the regular transportation of guests to and from the theme parks. Take note of the opportunity to check out locations like the ESPN Wide World of Sports and Disney Vacation Club Resorts (like Old Key West). You’re also able to gain access to resorts like Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, which are 100% worth the trip any day any time!

Disney Bus Transportation
Official Link


Honorable Mentions

  • Ferry Boat (Magic Kingdom to TTC)
  • Water Taxi (Disney Springs to Resorts)

The Best Places to Buy Unique Gifts in Universal Orlando Resort

They Didn't Have My Name Mug at Universal Orlando - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

The best places to buy unique gifts in Universal Orlando may bring you more than a basic shirt selection or things that you can find online through Shop.UniversalOrlando.com.

If you’re someone like me and can see individualism and creativity as a bonus…then these shops should definitely be on your radar. With over 85 stores, there are plenty to choose from!

Filch’s Emporium™ of Confiscated Goods

Peruse items taken from students who got on the wrong side of the school’s resident caretaker, Argus Filch. You’ll find Hogwarts™ t-shirts, shoulder bags, caps, and scarves; plus house crest banners, stationery, and more. You’ll also find authentic movie prop replicas such as Death Eater™ masks, Quidditch™ clothing, magical creature toys, and more.

What makes it special? Each and every team member who works in this location are actually part of the story…in that they have a backstory as to how they found their way into “detention”. Ask and you’ll find a new level of appreciation for this store!

Related Article – Harry Potter Experiences You Can’t Miss


Article Continues Below

Ollivanders™

This is where young wizards and witches come in search of the most essential wizarding item: their wand. Inside, towering walls reveal thousands of wand boxes stacked to the ceiling. You can witness a unique interactive experience and see a wand choose a wizard.

In the shop visitors (including the wizard chosen* in the interactive experience) can purchase their own unique wand, wand sets, character wand replicas, or buy an Interactive Wand and cast spells to create amazing magical experiences throughout Diagon Alley™ and Hogsmeade™.

There’s another location of the famous shop in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ – Hogsmeade™ at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

*Person chosen has the option whether or not to purchase their wand.

MIB Gear

MIB Gear at Universal Studios Florida (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

If you manage to blast your way past the 30-foot bug at the end of MEN IN BLACK™ Alien Attack™, you’ll find yourself here, in the nerve center of MIB business. 

This is where agents gather to pick up their gadgets and devices, official MIB apparel, futuristic toys from across the galaxy, holographic jewelry, and “highly classified” alien artifacts and souvenirs.

Comic Book Shop

Comic Book Shop at Marvel Superhero Island in Islands of Adventure (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

POW! Prepare to enter the inner circle of classic comic lore. BLAM! Books and graphic novels line the shelves, packed with the legends that have defined Marvel for over 75 years. KRUNCH! Super fans get a one-two punch with both collectible figurines and busts for sale immortalizing their icons.

You’ll also find posters, apparel and, of course, official Marvel comics as you snake your way through stacks of stupefying souvenirs. It’s a fantastic world. Step inside and live it for a little while.


Article Continues Below

Kwik-E-Mart

Bort Keychain in Springfield USA in Universal Studios Florida (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Somewhere atop a mountain in the Himalayas stands the very first Kwik-E-Mart. But here at Universal Studios Florida™, the Kwik-E-Mart is smack-dab in the heart of Springfield, and has convenience store staples every Simpsons™ fan will love.

Feeling parched? Quench your thirst with a Duff energy drink. Tummy rumbling? Load up on a Lard Lad donut. Please enjoy your many purchases of Simpsons-themed toys, apparel, books, souvenirs, and more. But don’t dawdle; Kwik-E-Mart is not a library.

Related Article – Fun Facts about Springfield USA

Williams of Hollywood™

Williams of Hollywood at Universal Studios Florida (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Snag a piece of theme park history at this fascinating Hollywood Boulevard store. A must-see stop for film buffs, the Williams of Hollywood Prop Shop is packed with vintage curiosities, set pieces used in the parks, and more. You’ll find decor like old movie stills and posters alongside antique furniture, hats, and jewelry. Exclusive props from seasonal events and retired attractions make for incredible gifts or one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

Be sure to stop by during your day at Universal Studios™: This shop is constantly restocked with new treasures to discover.


Article Continues Below

Borgin and Burkes™

Borgin and Burkes in Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Should you find yourself in need of any sinister items, this is the place to go. This dark and dusty Knockturn Alley shop is infamous for shady patrons including Draco Malfoy™, who used a Vanishing Cabinet you can actually view inside the store, to sneak Death Eaters™ into Hogwarts™ castle. 

As you walk among the dimly lit shelves and displays teeming with malevolent relics, you’ll find Death Eater™ masks, skulls, Harry Potter™ film costume replicas, apparel, accessories, jewelry, and collectibles.

Cats, Hats & Things™

Upon exiting The Cat in the Hat™ ride, come in and pick up a thing or two bearing the likeness of Thing One™ and Thing Two™. In this pleasing emporium you’ll find colorful characters cavorting on the ceiling, and a fanciful statue of Dr. Seuss’s iconic cat playfully juggling all manner of items—just like he does in the book. This is the best boutique for The Cat in the Hat-themed toys, gifts, and t-shirts; plus a wide selection of themed child and baby apparel.


Hope this was helpful in planning your trip to Universal Orlando!

Overlooked Experiences at Universal Orlando

Springfield USA at Universal Orlando Resort (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

If you’ve spent time on our site, you’re aware of the importance of tips and secrets to plan your day and spend as little time wandering as possible. Well when you go through your plans before 11am…what do you do before lunch? What do you do in the evening before dinner? What about that awkward time between 8pm and fireworks?

These attractions are not just amazing experiences, but they are also great to put into a relaxing day plan!


When you think about an ‘Overlooked’ Universal experience, it actually has a definition and criteria:

  1. You can’t get an Express Pass for it
  2. 9 out of 10 dentists would recommend it! (a little #StepsToMagic Humour)

Overlooked Experiences at Islands of Adventures

The Mystic Fountain

Carved of ancient stone atop the mysterious underground geysers of The Lost Continent, this feisty fountain in Sindbad’s Bazaar is home to a mischievous water spirit who speaks to (and splashes) those brave enough to match wits.

When awakened, the fountain plays music and jokes around, interacting with all who approach. Toss in a coin and you might get your wish—or a surprise squirt of H2O.


Article Continues Below

Frog Choir

Hear the vocal stylings of this small choir of Hogwarts™ students, accompanied by the smooth bass rumbles of their giant throaty frogs. The silver-tongued students—one each from Gryffindor™, Slytherin™, Hufflepuff™, and Ravenclaw™ houses—perform familiar wizarding songs with their croaking counterparts, and an a cappella flourish.

Related Article – Things to do in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Butterbeer Photo Shoot

Butterbeer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Diagon Alley
Butterbeer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Diagon Alley (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

If you’re a fan of theme parks, one of the things that you have to do is remember the good times. Some of us take pics with characters and cool backdrops…but then you have folks like me who tend to do a full photo shoot with a Butterbeer!

Be a fan. Take a pic!

Raptor Encounter in Jurassic Park

Raptor Encounter at Islands of Adventure (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Jurassic Park has always been a fun place to explore. From the hidden gems inside of the Discovery Centre to the Raptor Encounter, you should 100% try to come face to face with a dino!


Article Continues Below

Overlooked Experiences at Universal Studios Florida

Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees

Sway and groove to the dulcet tones of wizarding world sensation (and Molly Weasley’s favorite singer), Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees. The swinging show features never-before-heard songs including ‘A Cauldron Full Of Hot, Strong Love’, ‘You Stole My Cauldron But You Can’t Have My Heart’, and ‘You Charmed The Heart Right Out Of Me’.

Knight Bus

Parked on the London Embankment is the purple, three-storied Knight Bus™, which stranded witches and wizards flag down with their wands for emergency transport. Passers-by can look in the windows and see curtains, beds, and an ornate chandelier. They’ll also hear chatter from the talkative shrunken head hanging over the steering wheel, including occasional conversation with the bus conductor.

Related Article – Best Character Experiences at Universal Orlando

The Tonight Show Museum

Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon
Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon™ – Photo by Steps to Magic

When Jimmy moved in, the history of the Tonight Show came with him.

From desks to suits and everything in between, spending time in the queue line for Race Through NYC Starring Jimmy Fallon is worth the virtual pass alone.

Oh, and say hi to #HashtagThePanda for us!

Geek Out in Springfield

Bort Keychain at Springfield USA in Universal Studios Florida
Bort Keychain at Springfield USA in Universal Studios Florida (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

With the Simpsons into their 321st season (or so it feels), there are continuous opportunities to spot the details in and around Springfield USA.

From the 7 Duff’s to the statue of Jebediah Springfield, you’ll be able to play with the world that will always give you more to explore when you look harder.

Oh, and get a photo of a ‘Bort’ nametag in the Kwik-e-Mart! Classic

Final Thoughts

Still wanting more ideas for experience on your next Universal Orlando Resort vacation? I love sharing more and more content to keep your trip planning juices flowing to build the excitement!

5 Attractions To Skip at Islands of Adventure

Dudley Do-Right's Ripsaw Falls
Dudley Do-Right's Ripsaw Falls - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Spending time at Universal Orlando Resort is full of incredibly immersive experiences, especially at Islands of Adventure. From Marvel to Harry Potter, there are dozens of attractions to consider for your day…but are they all great?

This is why we have decided to share with you the 5 attractions to skip. Does this mean that they are bad? Absolutely not! The list is filled with attractions that we would suggest that you do during very specific times, like rain storms or if there’s no line.

StepsToMagic.com is all about the insider tips, tricks and plans to make your experience within the Orlando area as epic as possible. If we were to say that everything is amazing, then we would have NO credibility.

Flight of the Hippogriff

It’s a long wait for a re-themed kiddy coaster.

The time spent reading the official description of the attraction is actually longer than the ride itself. I’ve seen folks wait for 60+ minutes for this, and it’s shocking because there’s really no story and no thrill…you can see everything from the sidewalk.

Just skip it. There’s more exciting Harry Potter experiences in the Wizarding World…including a Butterbeer or picking out a wand at Olivanders.


Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls

I put together a list of the attractions that you will get soaked on, and Ripsaw Falls is a highlight IF you’re wanting to walk around in wet shoes for the rest of the day.

Personally, I spend more time on the bridge with the squirt guns because it’s a blast!


Article Continues Below

Storm Force Accelatron

It’s a spinning tea cup attraction, so if you like that – game on!

If you’re like me and have just finished a butterbeer or snack…you probably should skip this one.

I do enjoy the atmosphere around the area, as you’re right beside the Incredible Hulk Coaster!

Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges

Part of Cartoon Lagoon, this is a solid water attraction that will 100% soak you from head to toe.

Why is it skipable? Simple – theming and characters that no one really cares about anymore.

In fact, feel free to search “Popeye” and “Bluto” on the Popeye Fandom page…I’ll wait for ya!

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish

So far, this list has brought you a number of classic theme park attraction styles. From the teacups (Storm Force) to the water raft (Popeye), this is a Dumbo-esc spinner ride with the addition of H2O.

Out of all the highly themed experiences in Seuss Landing, this may be the one that you can skip without missing too much. Instead, go and stand in line for a character meet & greet with the Grinch or head over to Hogsmeade!


Honourable Mentions

  • Skull Island: Reign of Kong
  • Doctor Doom’s Fearfall
  • Pteranodon Flyers

Did we get it right? What attractions would you add to the list?

Disney Vacation Upgrades that Don’t Make the Grade

Tusker House Character Dining at Disney's Animal Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

You can over-spend on a Disney World vacation by investing your budget into the wrong things for your party.

Many of the items in this article may, in fact, be perfect for your unique situation and so feel free to disregard the advice on that specific point. We’re just trying to give things that we’ve seen or experienced to our readership in order for them to make an educated decision.

Hotel Pizza Delivery

Starting out with an easy “pass”, the sheer cost of an after-hours pizza from a Disney resort would make even the biggest spender blush. If you think that you’ll be hungry after getting back from a full day at the parks, grab a snack or a meal “to go” and it’ll save you enough money to have another Dole Whip!

Cost: Two Adult Table Service dining credits are required to purchase one Large Pizza, two Desserts, and one 2-Litre Bottle of Soda.

Preferred Parking

Many folks drive to Disney World and take their car everywhere. With most of those folks being Annual Passholders, they get free parking with their investment…but sometimes folks will pay cash for things like parking. This tip is for you!

Don’t worry about Preferred Parking! It’s not worth it.

Directly from Disney:
Guests pay one fee for a parking pass good all day at all 4 theme parks—Magic Kingdom park, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park. Our special preferred parking lots are located conveniently close to the theme park entrances. All parking fees include applicable sales tax.

  • Preferred parking: car or motorcycle – $45-$50 per day*
  • Standard parking: car or motorcycle – $25 per day
  • Oversized Vehicle Parking: Shuttle, Limo, Camper Trailer, RV, Bus or Tractor Trailer – $30 per day

Standard theme park parking is included for registered Guests of Disney Resort hotels and select Annual Passholders. These Guests can also choose to enjoy preferred parking by paying the difference in cost between their included standard parking and preferred parking (difference is currently $15-$25 per day*).

*Pricing is seasonal and will vary based on date of visit.


Article Continues Below

Chefs Table at Victoria & Alberts

I love Victoria & Alberts! It’s an amazing experience if you’re looking for Disney dining on a level that you have always dreamed about.

That being said, the Chef’s Table may not be exciting IF you’re not into the culinary scene. It’s the same price per guest from the regular Dining Room or the Queen Victoria Room, but as long as you’re excited for a meal to remember…you’ll be fine:)

Character Dining

Controversial take, but every Character Dining experience is not the same AND some are not worth the upgrade.

When you’re paying out of pocket, it’s important for you to find a meal that brings good food together with an awesome character encounter. If you think that your party won’t enjoy meeting certain characters, then maybe it’s worth finding another reservation at a character dining.

The best example is the Hollywood & Vine at Disney’s Hollywood Studios or the meals at 1900 Park Fare at the Grand Floridian. Both are non-Fab5 and are perfect for a certain age group or fans of a certain franchise.


Article Continues Below

Holiday Events

Over the last couple years, we’ve planned full vacations around Halloween and Christmas in order to get to see Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party and Mickey’s Not so Scary Halloween Party.

From the price of the tickets ($100+ for a party which gets you access to the Magic Kingdom for 8 hours or so) to the crowds and generic merchandise that doesn’t appeal to most guests. These parties used to be fun, but have now transformed into gatherings where most guests have to camp out for 2+ hours to meet a single character and have to deal with large crowds of unhappy guests trying to get their money worth.

After buying tickets and experiencing them both, we feel as though the parties have now ventured into the territory of not being worth the price of admission.

Minnie Van

This is an easy one for me, because I feel as though there are better options to get around Walt Disney World than in a minivan with polka dots. Grab an UBER and save 60-80% of the cost of a Minnie Van trip.


Hope that this was helpful in your trip planning!

Please remember that if you are “all in” on Minnie Vans or every character experience, this article wasn’t telling you that you were wrong. In fact, if you love the holiday parties because you’re able to pick and choose the exact dates that may have smaller crowds and fluke out with a night that gets rained out…you’ve got the luck of the Irish and you should pick up a lottery ticket:)

Never Get Lost In The Magic Kingdom Again

Magic Kingdom Park Map (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

The Magic Kingdom can provide an escape from reality when you need it the most, but what happens when you take a wrong turn without knowing it. There are three ways that you can know where you’re going and how to get there, without having to stress!

ASK A CAST MEMBER

This one is simple: Just ask a cast member. They’ve got the lay of the lands and can give you the right directions to your intended destination, without judgment. This is incredibly helpful when looking for a specific spot, like a washroom or first aid.

USE A PARK MAP

Magic Kingdom Park Map (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Disney puts maps everywhere, but specifically you’re going to find a stack of paper maps at most (if not all) retail locations near the cash register. These will give you the opportunity to look around you to have a starting point, like an attraction or quick service location, and then see where your next steps will be.

If you download the MyDisneyExperience App to your phone, you’ll have access to a smart map which will geolocate you to your exact location.


Article Continues Below

FOLLOW THE CROWDS

Never mind, this isn’t a tip! In fact, most times the crowds will lead you further away from your intended destination. Ask first, wander later!

KNOW THE PARK LAYOUT

50th Anniversary Castle at Magic Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

The Magic Kingdom is divided into six themed “lands.” It is designed like a wheel, with the hub in front of Cinderella Castle. Pathways spoke out from the hub across the 107 acres (43 ha) of the park and lead to these six lands.

There are breezeways and other walkways that connect the lands without going through the central hub (aka in front of the castle), but if you’re ever lost…go to the castle!


Article Continues Below

I know that this is a basic question for folks who have been to the parks a lot, but let’s look at the reason why someone would be looking for an answer to this topic.

It’s not for adults.

It’s for kids.

From personal experience, both working in the parks and running my own tour company, you’ll want to keep everyone orientated throughout the day. From pointing out things like washrooms and places that you’ll be seeing later (like your FastPass at the Haunted Mansion), it’s integral to give the younger minds something to look for.

It’s also important to know where you’ll end up “getting lost” or becoming separated from your party.


Article Continues Below

Here’s the Top 3 Places You’ll Lose Your Family at the Magic Kingdom

In Crowds

  • Parades, because parents like to send their kids to the front to get a better view.
  • Fireworks, because it’s dark and overly crowded in places like Main Street USA.
  • After a show lets out, like Festival of the Lion King or Fantasmic. Lots of people flooding the street.

Washrooms

  • Before you hit the washroom, communicate with your party exactly where you’ll meet them. Don’t Don’t Don’t use the phrase “I’ll be around”, because there are sometimes two or three entrances to a washroom.
  • Parents, make sure that your kids know what you’re wearing and have a pic of the outfit that they’re wearing. The number of times that I’ve seen kids follow an adult out of a bathroom because they had on the same shoes or same color clothing and then realize that they’ve lost their parent…it’s constant!
  • Dads – this is a tip for you. Wear funky shoe laces! Have something that makes you stand out in a crowd.

Restaurants

  • I’ve seen meltdowns at all points during mealtimes, from parents losing kids who went to find a table to kids not knowing where their family was sitting after returning from the restroom.
  • Don’t yell across the dining room, as it’s just easier for you to get up and walk over to your lost family member. In fact, you’ll see them LONG before they see you, so don’t sneak up on them from behind without using their name about 5 steps away.

Article Continues Below

Tips for Keeping Track of Lost Parents

Disney doesn’t have lost kids – they’ve got lost parents. The kids know exactly where they are…

Because of that, it’s important that you put as many things on your kids in order to identify them and give a Security Cast Member the upper hand of a happy reunion.

  • Take as many photos as possible, including outfits with all accessories (hats, sunglasses, etc)
  • Write your MOBILE phone number on the backside of their MagicBand. Your home number won’t help anywhere at this moment.

The topic of getting lost has so many different answers and tips that it’s all about over-communicating. Be aware that you’ll be in the most popular theme park in the world, so most people won’t know what it’s like to be around 60,000 other people who have their own agendas and schedules to keep.

I hope that this was helpful!

10 Experience Gift Ideas Kids Will Love At Disney World

Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at the Grand Floridian Resort (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

A growing trend is to gift kids “experiences” instead of “stuff” toys for birthdays and holidays. When you’re planning a trip to Disney, why not get them excited by sharing something that they get to do. We’ve put together a solid list to give you a starting point for experience gift ideas that your kids will love to receive!

Experiences Are Customizable

Did you know that Disney offers experiences that range all budgets, including both time and financial? You’re going to be able to create something that is so much more exciting and memorable than a knick-knack could ever do. In fact, some of the coolest gifts come from the heart and will show how much you know your family!

Experiences are Subjective

Taking into consideration the age and interests of your kids will give you license to create something awesome. Our goal with this list is to start the creative juices flowing in order to really see what kind of fun you can get up to.


Article Continues Below

Experience Gift Ideas Kids Will Love At Disney World

Unique Tours

  • Disney’s Family Magic Tour
  • Disney’s The Magic Behind Our Steam Trains Tour
  • Private VIP Tours
  • Ultimate Disney Classics VIP Tour
  • Up Close with Rhinos

Nature Experiences

  • Caring for Giants
  • Epcot Seas Adventures – Aqua Tour
  • Starlight Safari at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
  • Wanyama Safari
  • Wild Africa Trek

Article Continues Below

Playtime

  • Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique
  • Captain Hook’s Pirate Crew
  • Character Couture
  • Perfectly Princess Tea Party
  • Pirate Adventure Cruises
  • Pirates & Pals Fireworks Voyage
  • Wonderland Tea Party at 1900 Park Fare

R&R

Disney Springs Activities

Aerophile −The World Leader in Balloon Flight
Vintage Amphicar & Italian Water Taxi Tours

Fort Wilderness Activities

Archery
Canoe Rentals
Carriage Rides*
Horseback Trail Rides*
Pony Rides
Wagon Rides*
Wilderness Back Trail Adventure


Article Continues Below

Golfing

Disney’s Lake Buena Vista Golf Course
Disney’s Magnolia Golf Course
Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course
Disney’s Palm Golf Course
Golf Lessons

Mini Golf

Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf
Winter Summerland Miniature Golf

Port Orleans Activities

Carriage Rides*

Spas & Spa Treatments

Character Couture
Mandara Spa
Senses Spa

Water Sports & Boating

Fishing – Dockside
Fishing – Guided Excursions
Specialty Cruises
Surfing – Group Lessons
Surfing – Private Sessions


So many options! Remember to do your research, as many of the offerings have minimum ages while others may only be scheduled certain times of the week and have to be reserved in advance.

What would you add to the list? Let me know over on Instagram @ StepstoMagic

Top 6 Apps to Beat Homesickness on Vacation

Mobile Checkout at Disney's Animal Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Getting homesick while on vacation can be a bummer, but there’s technology available to help get through it.

Functional Apps

ZOOM

Hop on a Zoom call to see what’s going on back home. From family to friends and everyone in between, it’s easier now to connect with your community via wifi than before when it was only with collect calls.

RING

The Ring app lets you see, hear and speak to anyone on your property from anywhere. If you’re thinking about security for your front door, pick up the Ring camera from your local store (or amazon) before heading on vacation and you’ll be able to see what’s going on at home.

Download Ring

VOXER

When we’re on vacation, we tend to have family and friends look after our pet. If everyone is busy or we need to get help, there are pet sitters that will be able to look after your pets without having to board them. The easiest way is through the use of an app like Voxer, which allows the pet sitter to upload photos, videos and text/voice messages to an account and then when you’re attached to a wifi signal…everything gets delivered.

We absolutely fell in love with this app while on a Disney World vacation, because we’d sit down for a meal and have a slew of cat photos from our pet sitter just waiting for us. Definitely worth checking out!

Download Voxer


Article Continues Below

Social Apps

TWITTER

I know that the need to stay “connected” with your home would make you follow too many news outlets, but here’s the trick. Find a few sources of local tips and stuff, without paying too much attention to the negative stories and you’ll be fine.

INSTAGRAM

You’re going to be on it anyway, so why not follow a few local creators? If you’re afraid of being too homesick…follow dog accounts from your neighbourhood!

FACEBOOK

Nothing will take you away from a vacation and put back in reality than a couple swipes on Facebook.


Hope that this was helpful! If you think we should add anything to this article, just send me a DM over on Instagram.com/stepstomagic!

Tips for Meeting up with Friends while on a Disney Vacation

Being Together is Magical Shirt (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Let’s set the scene. You’re planning a trip to Disney World and one of your friends sends you a message to let you know that they’ll be there at the same time. What do you do?

After many experiences, both successful and not, I’ve put together a list that could help you navigate the expectations of meeting up with friends at Disney.

My Past Mistakes

I’m usually the person who starts the conversation, but every so often it’ll be another friend who will reach out to me. Both ways, it’s a mix of setting expectations from the beginning about what you’re asking of the other. This is where you’ll probably mess up, as depending on when you’re starting the planning, could be months out vs the next day.

The biggest mistake that I’ve made is to leave things open, with the pressure being on the other person to come up with an idea. Don’t make my mistake:) It’s a lot easier for your friends to work around a specific event.

I’ve set up schedules with openings, had calls and email chains…all to end up with a last minute change of plans. Lots of stress!


Article Continues Below

So let’s look at the Top 10 Tips for Hanging out with Friends

ASK FOR YOUR FRIEND’S PLANS

Starting out with a basic understanding of where they’ll on which day could help you figure out if it’s even do-able. Lots of times, your friend may have plans that aren’t adaptable due to family obligations. If they only have the time to hang out in the Magic Kingdom on a Monday, but you are planning to be there on Sunday and again on Tuesday for a party, it may not work out from the beginning.

You don’t need all their detailed plans, but most times they’ll want to share all the stuff that they’ve got planned anyway. It’s an exciting time during the vacation planning process!

BOOK AN ADVANCED DINING RESERVATION

Remember that you don’t get penalized for a no-show dining reservation unless you cancel in the last 24 hours. This means that you can book a bunch of reservations at different parks on different days, just in case one works better for your friends’ plans.

If you wanted to wait until last minute, we’ve got a list of restaurants that are fairly easy to book for groups with little notice.


Article Continues Below

DON’T RELY ON WIFI – MAKE A PLAN IN ADVANCE

HUGE mistakes can be made when you make plans that involve “send me a note when you get to the park and we’ll meet up”. Make a plan in advance, confirm it the day before and say that you’re meeting someone at a specific location at a time. If they’re not there within 15-minutes (with no contact), then just go on with your trip.

As an out-of-country visitor, my data plans are more expensive than domestic travellers so I’ll end up just using wifi. There are places within the theme parks that have horrible wifi zones, including just outside the turnstiles and by transportation. Know before you go!

MEET SOMEWHERE SPECIFIC AND RECOGNIZABLE

Don’t say that you’ll meet someone:

  • In front of the Castle
  • in front of the giant golf ball
  • Beside the Tree of Life
  • In Star Wars.

All of these have the potential of going sideways, because there’s really no exact spot. You’ll want to say that your friend should meet you in front of guest relations or the starbucks…because it’s such an easy thing to share and there’s only one location in every park.

SET EXPECTATIONS EARLY

Are you wanting to spend the day with your friend, or is it a situation where they’re more of an acquaintance and you’d rather just do a specific activity together? All of this should be communicated early, because you’re on vacation too!


Article Continues Below

TAKE PHOTOS WHEN YOU CAN

If you’re in front of an icon (castle, tree, etc) grab a photo. Some of the best tips come from personal experience, and this is a doozy! I’ve met up with a ton of friends, and by the time our meetup was over…we had no pics and couldn’t share in the excitement when those memories would come up in the future.

BE GENEROUS

One of my favorite parts of meeting up with friends is trying new things. Maybe its a restaurant or a new snack, but no matter what it is…include your party in the activity and it’ll be that much better!

Not saying that you should pay for Victoria & Alberts, but a lunch or snack won’t hurt to really have fun.

I also love to show up with gifts, so if you know that you’re meeting up with friends who aren’t from your hometown…bring a pin or a gift. I’ve been known to bring down air fresheners from Tim Hortons or a “You are Here” mug from Starbucks. Just good fun:)

DON’T WORRY IF PLANS FALL THROUGH

This will take some time to learn, but there’s only so much that you can do to meet up with friends. At the end of the day, you’re going to be putting your best foot forward with the end goal of being a great friend. IF for whatever reason the stars won’t align for you…don’t worry about it. Things will be okay:)


Hope that this was helpful! I know that this is a topic that can only be helpful for a small group of our readers, but there’s been enough requests for me to write the list and stand by the advice. Every vacation is different, so do what you can without sacrificing your own trip.

Things That Change in Disney World

Chip and Dale, with Joe from SOUL 50th Anniversary Statue at Disney's Hollywood Studios (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic) (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

A day at Walt Disney World is a snapshot in time, as you’ll never find the same experience on another date on the calendar.

From attractions to restaurants and everything in between, this list will show you all the things that could be different when you go on vacation that may not have been there from photos online.

TECHNOLOGY

The biggest thing that changes is technology, and the utilization of it to enhance guest experiences. From the adding of screens to the newest apps and reservation systems, there are constant changes and enhancements to the technology that you’ll need to take into account when planning a trip.

MAGICBANDS

Did you know that the “current” version of the MagicBand isn’t the original? Think of this addition like an iphone – there are new features that can only be used in the latest version.


Article Continues Below

ATTRACTION RESERVATIONS

When FastPass first came out at Walt Disney World, it was a paper reservation that required you to put your ticket into a machine. Things changed when the current system of “FastPass+” came into existence, where you’re able to reserve up to 3 attractions 30-60 days out from your first day, as you had to be AT the attraction in order to get a reservation time in the future.

Now that Genie+ and the Lightning Lane has joined the Disney Parks scene – the future is all up in the air.

PS – I’ve still got a collection of paper FastPass tickets…because I’m a nerd!

PARK AND RESORT NAMES

Fun one! Did you know that Disney has a tenancy to make my life miserable by changing a name of a resort or park? It may not be as difficult as changing letterhead or business cards, but when they changed the name of Disney’s Polynesian Resort to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort OR when Disney’s MGM Studios became Disney’s Hollywood Studios…I had to change so many articles on StepstoMagic.com!!

I still haven’t gone through to reflect the new EPCOT change, as it used to be Epcot.

Good times. Yup…good times.


Article Continues Below

PRICES

Oh my goodness! Let’s just do a quick scan of everything that has increased in price in the last 10 years…yup…that’s EVERYTHING!

From sodas to tickets, event costs to hotel rooms – everything has increased in price. If you go to Disney with a budget from a past trip, you’ll be sorely disappointed. Expect the unexpected, because even the little things will change.

EVENTS

Halloween now starts in August. RunDisney now runs events year-round. There’s almost always an event at EPCOT. Basically, there will always be new events…but that means that older events may not be around anymore.

Pirate and Princess Party, ESPN Weekend, Star Wars Weekends and ABC Super Soap Weekend…all have been “future endeavoured” to make way for other offerings.


Article Continues Below

RIDE AVAILABILITY

There are attractions that are “seasonal”, which means that they are only opened during busy seasons (like 4th of July, Christmas, etc). Listing all the experiences would be impossible, especially since we don’t know what happens behind closed doors.

The other part of this topic are all the times where you may choose a vacation timeframe that coincides with a refurbishment or maintenance downtime.

You could also be subject to an unexpected closure due to a number of factors, including something that happened during a research trip in July 2018…both Kali River Rapids and Expedition Everest were down for my entire trip because a bolt of lightning struck a transformer that powered the attractions. Yup, two of the iconic attractions were down at the same time in the summer – good times!

MEAL PLANS

The Disney Dining Plan changes annually. Basically, the story that repeats every year is that Disney releases an increased offering with increased prices and lowers the number of restaurants that you can choose. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a commentary on whether or not it’s worth it (by the way, I’ve got a pro and con article available). It’s literally stating that the plans change year over year, so it’s something to expect.

There are currently no DDP options, but that’s just another thing that will change.


Article Continues Below

HOUSEKEEPING

Disney calls their resort room staff “mousekeeping”, and although things have become more streamlined…one of the parts of a stay at an official Disney World Resort that changes is the standards to which the rooms are cleaned before and during your stay.

Don’t want to have your room cleaned daily during your trip? Disney has offered in the past a financial incentive to decline this aspect of your stay. In addition, with your MagicBand, you can check in and check out of your room without even visiting the lobby. Things change for the better, and sometimes things change just because they can.

PRODUCT LINES

Remember Vinylmation? I do! It’s one of my favorite things that Disney ever did. Think pin trading, but with little figurines in the shape of Mickey but with different designs and series. Well, Disney doesn’t really do Vinylmation anymore!

We like to call them extinct souvenirs, as they were huge at the time before being replaced by something new. Disney Dollars, Pal Mickey, CD’s and DVD’s, Club Penguin…so many product lines that don’t exist anymore!


Remember that Disney World is always changing!

How to get your Second Wind on a Vacation Day

Seating area at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
Seating area at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Second Wind = a new strength or energy to continue something that is an effort.

There’s nothing more tiring than a day at Disney World! In fact, there’s more calories burned during the initial rope drop sequence than a single Dole Whip can replace.

All kidding aside – the idea behind getting a second wind during a vacation day is incredibly important. The weather mixed with emotions and adrenaline and filled with expectations of living a trip that may have been months in the planning could be overwhelming.

When we were coming up with this list, it was important to recognize that every person in your group will have a different answer to running out of energy. From crashing in a mid-day nap to being able to do a couple days in a row without needing a break and then hitting that wall…it’s all about having ideas to deploy during a trip.

SNACK

Liberty Square Market at the Magic Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Find a piece of fruit, a cup of grapes or something that isn’t packed with artificial sugar. It may seem like a little thing, but a little air conditioning and a quick bite to eat could really help get things back to normal.

Just in case you’re looking for a spot in each park to just grab a seat without being around too many folks, here’s a quick rundown.

  • Magic Kingdom – Liberty Square Market or Tortuga Tavern in Adventureland
  • EPCOT – Sunshine Seasons in the Land Pavilion
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios – The Backlot Express or Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge
  • Animal Kingdom – Satuli Canteen

Article Continues Below

TAKE A FEW MINUTES TO YOURSELF

This is a huge part of our vacations, as Jill has a different level of excitement for times during the trip. Mostly because I’m working on stories or articles for the website, but also because I’m so focused on taking photos ALL THE TIME that she sometimes needs a few hours to herself in order to refresh the magic while I’m busy working.

During a morning where I was at Disney Golf for a meeting, she went to the Magic Kingdom for a few rides (Splash Mountain, Tea Cups, etc) before we met up before lunch at Animal Kingdom. We’re also a huge fan of taking a shorter break by going shopping for each other while the other is playing in a different part of the park.

NAP

This is an easy one, but if you’re like us and really like doing the early morning and late night touring plans…why not nap during the afternoon? It’s usually crazy hot and full of people who didn’t wake up early for rope drop (or families) so it’s the perfect time. You can head back to the resort OR find a good spot for an in-park nap

SEE A SHOW

Mickey’s Philharmagic at the Magic Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

Mix air conditioning with a comfy seat and not having to walk anywhere…enjoying a show is perfect to recharge! Each park has a spot that we love, so here’s the list:

  • Animal Kingdom – Its Tough to be a Bug
  • EPCOT – American Adventure and Turtle Talk with Crush
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios – MuppetVision3D
  • Magic Kingdom – Mickey’s Philharmagic, Hall of Presidents, Country Bear Jamboree.

Article Continues Below

AVOID YOUR PHONE

The worst thing that you can do is find a bench and just open up Instagram or Facebook, because it’s not doing anything to help you get a second wind.

You’re at Disney…so stay in the moment:)


I hope that this was helpful! Stay positive and you’ll get through those tough moments…because they will show up at the worst possible times for anyone in your group. It’s all about knowing what stage you’re at and not to just push through.

5 Attractions To Skip at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Alien Swirling Saucers - Photo by Dustin Fuhs

Spending time at Disney’s Hollywood Studios has become easier and easier!

On top of Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land, there’s a ton of great experiences to enjoy on your vacation day, but there are a few attractions that stick out like a sore thumb in such an awesome park. This is why we have decided to share with you the 5 attractions to skip.

Does this mean that they are bad? Absolutely not! The list is filled with attractions that we would suggest that you do during very specific times, like rain storms or if there’s no line.

StepsToMagic.com is all about the insider tips, tricks and plans to make your experience within the Orlando area as epic as possible. If we were to say that everything is amazing, then we would have NO credibility.

ALIEN SWIRLING SAUCERS

WHEEEEEEEE!!!

This is such a fun attraction, unless of course you are deciding on whether or not to use a FastPass+ on it or something else. Basically, you’ll want to do this ride after rope dropping a Toy Story Mania or Slinky Dog Dash and before your morning FastPass+ reservation:)

VACATION FUN – AN ORIGINAL ANIMATED SHORT WITH MICKEY & MINNIE

I know I know! Screen attractions have become the norm when you’re thinking about the next generation of experiences, but this is just a little too far.

Why would you go to a theme park to watch a movie? IF you want air conditioning, just head next door to the Frozen Sing-a-long and watch live performers.


Article Continues Below

Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy

Air conditioning aside, this experience had so much potential – and then it opened.

I’m going to save you 10 minutes right now….

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST LIVE ON STAGE

Oh, did you think that live entertainment wouldn’t show up on this list? You obviously haven’t spent time watching a highly outdated performance at Beauty & The Beast.

I love this movie, but the re-telling of the story in this format just feels so out of place. Outside of the fact that Disney has already staged a successful show on Broadway, but it’s just awkward because of the outdoor setting. Skip!


Article Continues Below

STAR WARS LAUNCH BAY

With Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge just a few hundred yards away, it’s shocking that they’s kept Launch Bay (former home of the Magic of Disney Animation) in operation.

Story-wise, it makes sense…as Galaxy’s Edge is a different universe without Darth Vader, Chewy and an Art of Disney-style store. My prediction is that the next domino to fall at DHS is this plot of land.

DISNEY JUNIOR DANCE PARTY!

Who wants to dance while on vacation? Outside of the obvious age group, this is by far and away an attraction that you should skip. If you want to dance, may I suggest a TikTok dance party with an awesome background…like the Tower of Terror!


Did we get it right? What attractions would you add to the list?