How Many Days Do I Need At Walt Disney World?
Before you set out booking your hotel or buying your tickets, you probably want to know how long a vacation you're going to take. Everyone has different priorities, pacing, and time allowance.
I will be listing two numbers for each park:
- Minimum time you should spend.
- Ideal amount to experience the whole park.
Magic Kingdom: Minimum 1 day, ideally 2 days
Magic Kingdom is the park everyone pictures when you mention Disney World. Beyond being constantly filled with people, it's also the largest park at Disney World in terms of amount of attractions. Trying to stuff everything at Magic Kingdom into one day is incredibly difficult and requires heavy advance planning and a low crowd level. You can get to all the big things in one day (the mountains, Haunted Mansion, Pirates, etc) but you will probably have to skip out on smaller attractions or shows. Spreading Magic Kingdom out over two days lets you not only enjoy all it has to offer, but you're not running in circles trying to check off everything. In extreme circumstances, like busy times around Christmas or if your family has to travel at a slower pace, 3 days may be necessary.
Epcot: Minimum 1 day, ideally 2 days
Families with small children will probably be able to get through Epcot in a single day, as many of the rides have height requirements. But for everyone else, I really do think you want to spend 2 days at Epcot. The park is insanely large and there's a lot of walking between attractions. You'll really want to visit Epcot more than one day if you're visiting during one of the many festivals the park hosts throughout the year. With tons of booths throughout the World Showcase serving all kinds of food and drinks, there's no way you can try everything on the menus in one day. Combine the booths with the expansive collection of permanent stands and restaurants, it's a foodie's paradise. I wouldn't say it's "trip ruined" if you can't visit multiple days, but I think Epcot is by far the best park you can 'relax' at.
Disney's Hollywood Studios: Minimum & ideally 1 day
With a slew of Walt Disney World's newest attractions, Hollywood Studios is consistently one of the busiest parks besides Magic Kingdom. You should be able to visit everything in the park in one day, but you may need an extra half day during busier times of the year to make it a less mad dash between things. One thing Hollywood Studios still lacks is solid nighttime entertainment while Fantasmic is under refurbishment. Disney Movie Magic, a measly 12 minute long projection show on the Chinese Theatre with no fireworks, is the only current offering. Picking up a Park Hopper and going over to watch Harmonious at Epcot is a better option.
Disney's Animal Kingdom: Minimum & ideally 1 day
Poor Animal Kingdom. After Disney's attempts to make it a full day park, COVID and a myriad of other things have caused it to fall back into being a "mostly full day". You'll find zero nighttime entertainment offerings after Rivers of Light floated to a landfill. While Animal Kingdom on paper doesn't have as many attractions as the other parks, it's a very large, spread out park. Wear your best shoes! How much time you spend looking at animals is unpredictable since they're live animals and not programmed robots like the Jungle Cruise. I've had visits where the animals were all napping and others where it was excitement all over.