Fireworks are the way to end your Disney day. No one does fireworks quite like Disney, which makes them can't-miss experiences during your trip. The two largest firework displays at Walt Disney World are Disney Enchantment at Magic Kingdom and Harmonious at EPCOT. Both shows premiered last October in honor of the resort's 50th-anniversary celebration. In addition, Disney puts on special firework displays on holidays like the 4th of July and New Year's Eve. Make sure you get a great spot for fireworks with my list of the best places to watch fireworks inside and outside the parks!
Disney Enchantment is the first nighttime spectacular to feature effects down Main Street, U.S.A., giving guests more opportunities for excellent firework viewing spots. Here are some of my favorite places:
Cinderella Castle Hub
The central hub immediately in front of the castle is one of the most popular places to watch the fireworks—and for a good reason. The area offers largely unobstructed views of the castle so that you can see the projections in more detail than anywhere else in the park. This area tends to get crowded quickly, so it's best to find a spot at least one hour before the show starts.
Main Street, U.S.A. - Train Station
If you'd rather not wait an hour before the fireworks to find a spot, you may be able to find a place toward the base of Main Street, U.S.A., about 20-30 minutes before showtime. I recommend watching the show from the flagpole area or the train station platform above the park entrance (if it's not roped off). This area provides panoramic views of the castle fireworks and the Main Street projections. If you plan to visit Magic Kingdom for more than one evening, I recommend viewing the fireworks from both vantage points. You get a completely different experience each time!
Another advantage of viewing fireworks from this area is that you can exit the park quickly after the show ends, beating the crowds to get in line for the resort buses, monorails, or ferryboats.
This firework location is off the beaten path and is not nearly as crowded as Main Street or the castle hub. It's a great place to watch if you've already viewed the show from a more "traditional" location. Plus, you'll get to take advantage of short wait times for rides like Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain before and after the show.
Located on the top level of Disney's Contemporary Resort, this restaurant is one of the best places to view Magic Kingdom fireworks outside the park. The lights dim and the music plays throughout the restaurant during the fireworks for an immersive experience. You can also view them from the patio outside the restaurant. Snag a reservation for dinner about an hour and a half before the fireworks start for your best shot of being inside the restaurant during showtime. This location gives you a bird's eye view and lets you in on some Disney magic, as you can see where the fireworks are set off from behind the park.
Beach at Disney's Polynesian Resort
Is there anything more relaxing than watching Disney fireworks from a lounge chair? If you're staying at Disney's Polynesian Resort or have a dining reservation, head down to the beach area about 20 minutes before showtime for the most laid-back firework viewing on property. The Polynesian's over-the-water bungalows are the ideal location to watch the fireworks from the comfort of your room!
Harmonious is one of Disney's largest firework shows to date. The display can be viewed anywhere around the World Showcase Lagoon at EPCOT, making it feel less crowded than the Magic Kingdom. Here are my top picks:
World Showcase - Entrance
The entrance of the World Showcase (between the Mexico and Canada pavilions) is one of the best places to view Harmonious. I recommend finding a spot near the Disney Traders gift shop (directly after crossing the bridge from World Celebration) and the boat dock. Bonus: there is a Starbucks nearby if you need a quick pick-me-up. I recommend securing your spot about 30 minutes before showtime.
World Showcase - Italy
If you don't mind taking a stroll around the World Showcase after the show, viewing the fireworks from the Italy pavilion offers great views and a romantic ambiance before the show begins.
The walking path and wooden boardwalk around Disney's BoardWalk Resort and Yacht & Beach Club is the best place to watch Harmonious outside EPCOT. Head to the bridge towards EPCOT's International Gateway entrance for the best and closest views. Although you won't be able to hear the music, your proximity to Epcot makes this a great place for firework viewing.
Dessert Parties and Dining Packages
If you'd like a more private, less-crowded firework viewing experience, consider booking a reservation for a Disney Enchantment Dessert Party or a Harmonious Dining Package. These experiences give you reserved firework viewing while enjoying dinner, dessert, and drinks. Here are the firework dining package options that are currently available:
Disney Enchantment Dessert Parties
There are three dessert party experiences at the Tomorrowland Terrace. Every experience includes buffet dining with a selection of desserts, fruits, cheeses, beer, wine, and non-alcoholic drinks. The "pre" and "post" Enchantment dessert parties allow you to view the fireworks from a reserved viewing area near the Plaza Garden while enjoying desserts and drinks an hour before or an hour after the nighttime spectacular. When you book a "Treats and Seats" experience, you'll get a reserved table at the Tomorrowland Terrace to watch the fireworks while enjoying food and drinks all the same place.
Ferrytale Fireworks Cruise
This unique experience allows you to hop aboard one of the Magic Kingdom's iconic ferryboats and view the fireworks from the middle of the Seven Seas Lagoon. You'll also enjoy desserts, drinks, beer, and wine selections.
Harmonious Dining Package
These dining packages include a prix fixe menu at Rose & Crown in the U.K. pavilion or Spice Road Table in Morocco. Once you've finished your meal, you can watch Harmonious from a reserved viewing area at the two restaurants' outdoor patios.
Dessert parties and dining packages are an additional fee, and reservations are highly recommended. They also require valid theme park admission and a park reservation. Just Add Magic Travel® can handle these reservations for you!
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to add this experience to your next trip to Walt Disney World! Haven't booked your vacation yet? Get a free quote for your trip!
Where are your favorite places to view fireworks? Let me know in the comments!
Summer and Disney World go hand in hand. With kids out of school and relaxed schedules, summer is a popular time for families to visit Disney, Universal, and other Orlando theme parks. However, Florida in the summertime also means heat, humidity, and daily thunderstorms. Here are the best ways to beat the heat and ensure everyone in your group has a cool vacation when visiting Disney in the summer.
1. Experience Indoor Attractions During the Hottest Part of the Day
A typical Florida summer day includes highs in the low to mid-90s with a 40-50% chance of rain in the afternoon. The heat is most intense between 11 am and 4 pm, so you’ll want to spend as much time as possible inside during these times.
Whether you choose a standby queue, schedule a Genie+ return time, or secure a Lightning Lane pass, choosing an air-conditioned attraction will be a welcome relief from the heat. Here are a few of my favorite indoor attractions & shows with mostly indoor queue lines:
2. Visit Characters
Meeting characters is a great way to beat the heat when visiting during the summer at Disney World. Many of the best meet and greet locations are located at indoor facilities throughout the parks. Meeting Mickey at the Town Square Theater or getting a hug from Elsa and Anna will help you relax and cool down!
3. Make a Lunch Reservation
Opting for a sit-down meal in the middle of the day may be a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the parks. Plus, securing a dining reservation for lunch will free up time in the early morning and late afternoon to enjoy outdoor attractions when temperatures are slightly cooler.
Need help securing your dining reservation? Just Add Magic Travel® can help! Get a quote to get started.
4. Spend Time in Indoor Play Areas
There are many indoor play areas that allow your family to explore the wonders of the imagination, explore the future, blast into space, or discover the oceans. These include the interactive game areas after Spaceship Earth and Journey into Imagination with Figment at EPCOT. I also recommend checking out the aquarium at the end of the Seas with Nemo and Friends attraction. You can easily spend a few hours exploring these areas!
5. Take a Midday Break
Planning to take midday breaks is one of the best tips for successful theme park vacations, especially when traveling with small children or elderly family members. Staying at a Disney Resort makes this even easier, as you can take free Disney transportation to and from your hotel. After recharging for two or three hours, return to the parks in the afternoon and enjoy the cooler temperatures in the evening.
6. Stay Hydrated
You may not realize it, but you could walk nearly ten miles every day you visit Disney World. Pair that with 95+ degree heat and the blazing Florida sun, and it won’t take long for symptoms of dehydration to kick in. Churros and Premium Mickey Ice Cream bars won’t sustain you for very long, so be sure to drink enough water, apply sunscreen, and find shade whenever possible. I recommend getting cases of water delivered to your resort to bring into the parks. The water in Florida can have a strong sulfuric taste that can be off-putting to some. Also, order free cups of tap water from quick-service dining locations (as long as they have a fountain drink dispenser).
If you or someone in your party doesn’t feel well, head to the First Aid center. Every Disney theme park has nurses on hand during normal park operating hours to help with minor medical issues.
7. Cool Down with Water Rides & Attractions
The ultimate tip for beating the heat when vacationing during the summer at Disney World? Cool down with water rides, pools, and other water activities. Every Disney Resort has at least one pool, so cooling down for a few minutes or a few hours is easy. There are also two water parks, so you can spend an entire day slipping and sliding down various waterslides or taking a dip in the wave pool.
Take advantage of the water rides like Splash Mountain at Magic Kingdom or Kali River Rapids at Animal Kingdom, as well. There are also a few water play areas throughout the parks, like the Casey Jr. Soak-n-Splash Station at Storybook Circus in Fantasyland.
Another crowd favorite way to cool down is at Club Cool at EPCOT. This Coke-themed store features free samples of Coke flavors from around the world.
Just Add Magic Travel Makes Summer at Disney World Vacations Cool
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What are your favorite ways to beat the heat when vacationing at Disney? Let me know in the comments below!