That is what After Hours at Magic Kingdom is all about. It is a special ticketed event can be purchased through me for my clients in advance for $125 per adult or child, plus tax—or purchased on the day of the event for $129 per adult or child, plus tax. When I say it is the best money I ever spent at Disney, I am not even exaggerating. Prior to this experience, I'd say Early Morning Magic (EMM) at Magic Kingdom was the best. See this Blog to hear more about THAT experience. (Click here to learn about recent additions to EMM)
So, how does it work?
For my particular experience, I already had park tickets for the day, so I could enter at any point. However, you do NOT need an additional park ticket for this event, similar to the Halloween party and the Christmas party. Non-park ticket guests can enter the park at 7PM prior to park closing. The event start times vary depending on park hours that day, but can last anywhere between 8PM - 1AM. (a 3 hours time span) Mine ran from 8PM - 11PM.
I arrived around 7PM-ish and the park was still quite crowded waiting for the Happily Ever After and Once Upon A Time evening castle projection show and fireworks. Now, because I have seen this before and I am NOT a crowd person, AND we are coming back in April, I decided to scope out other viewing areas for these shows.
I found some GREAT locations to view both and likely will never fight that in front of the castle crowd again. Now, having said that, if you haven't witnessed these events before, do it. Do it RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE Castle or have me reserve you a dessert party or dessert cruise. However, if you have been there done that, I highly suggest heading to Tomorrowland as an alternative to the crowded areas. The crowds got a bit thicker as I made my way to Fantasyland.
I absolutely LOVED having the fireworks literally exploding right over my head. There were so many places to sit or stand with basically no other people around. It was amazing and not even a part of the After Hours event.
After the fireworks, the non-After Hours guests have to get out. LOL. After Hours guests are given a special band upon check in. Upon arriving at the park hosting After Hours, you find the sign outside, like the one in the first photo above. You are then directed to other cast members that will put your special ticketed event band on your arm.
Anyway, we walked right onto Haunted Mansion, then rode literally every ride we wanted to with little to no wait. Keep in mind, it was rather COLD, in the 40s, so I didn't ride some of my favorites, but only because I chose not to. My bronchitis thing made flying through the cold air hurt my chest and I had a long day of ahead of me the next day. So, I avoided my most loved Splash Mountain and Thunder Mountain Rail Road, but under normal circumstances and temperatures, I would have spent a LOT of time on both of those. Edited: It has been brought to my attention that I did indeed ride Big Thunder Mountain with my girls and a husband. #ThanksDarcy LOL! In my defense, had it not be in the 40s I would have ridden it more than 1 time and I did return to the park a couple days later and thought that was when I did it. We did NOT ride Splash Mountain because of WATER and COLD. Though Darcy would tell you, as she did us, it was NOT cold AT ALL compared to her minus 1000 degree weather she is used to, living in New York. #OldAgeNoMemory
Regardless, the streets were mostly empty and I literally LOVED just wandering around in no particular hurry and no particular plan in my own little magic world. It was a dream come true.
Another aspect that was quite nice was that they had snack carts set up with all the snacks and non-alcoholic drinks you wanted for free. Again, it was COLD, so I didn't care to eat Mickey Bars, but the popcorn hit the spot.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post as much as I enjoyed revisiting one of my most favorite non-family moments at Walt Disney World. As always, please give us a LIKE. Share us with your friends and family. Leave a comment or ask a question here or on our Facebook page. Book that vacation. Add magical extras. Have a Magical day!