Whether you are a seasoned Disney World veteran or a first-time guest, one thing is for certain, you are bound to be shocked at some point by the longer-than-expected wait times for rides and attractions and it can ruin your day...if you let it.
Recently, my family visited the parks and on our last night, we opted to visit Magic Kingdom. We lasted 25 minutes and that was the time it took for us to walk in, turn around, and walk out. The park was packed and the line times were atrocious. How bad? It was an hour wait for It's a Small World" and a 90-minute wait for Tomorrowland Speedway.
Considering we had been to M.K. many times over, it was in our best interest to leave but sometimes, your park ticket won't allow you to. Most of the time it will not allow you to. So what do you do when your park day will be spent standing in line? You have options.
The first thing you need to identify is what attraction is your "must-see" on your visit. That is important because while wait times may be long one minute, they can drop considerably later in the day as people leave or do other things. Once you identify the attraction or attraction you simply can't leave the park until you do, set those aside and watch the wait times while you do other things and then revisit later in the day or evening.
Tom Sawyer Island - There may not be a better escape from the mass of guests that seem to wander from park section to park section without any care that other guests are in the park as well.
The Island can be accessed by boat only in Frontierland. It's a quick ride on a wooden ferry and once there, the island will practically be yours to explore. There are caves, tunnels, and even a fort that you and your family can enjoy with much fewer other guests in your way. If you take your own food to the park, bring it to the island, sit in the shade and look across the river at the thousands of guests bumping into each other...then smile.
Hall of Presidents - While you are waiting for the next show, it may seem like there are a lot of people but the actual theater is quite big and you will not be shoulder-to-shoulder with other guests. Even on a very high-capacity day HoP is rarely busy.
The attraction is an interesting one with a recap of American history and then animatronic presidents that is actually quite interesting. The show doesn't last overly long and it is all inside making it a nice break from the sunshine. It's a great attraction to kill some time and be entertained.
Walt Disney World Railroad - On really busy days the wait time might be a little longer but this is a ride/attraction that you don't have to get off of. The train takes you to three different parts of the park, the main entrance, frontierland, and Fantasyland.
It's a nice relaxing ride around the entire park and even has some animatronics and nice displays along the way. There are no posted wait times for the train and all you need to do is go to the platform and wait your turn. There are plenty of seats and not many guests actually ride the train around the entire park...but it is fun to do so.
Mickey's Philaharmagic - Located behind the carousel, Philaharmagic is a wonderful 3D trip through Disney films in an amusing and fun way. Follow along as Donald Duck tries to use Mickey's hat and instead gets thrown into the Disney universe. Sit back and laugh as he moves through Aladdin, The Little Mermaid, and many many others.
The theater is quite big so you won't have to worry about not getting a seat even on busy days. There is a posted wait time in front but that is the time until the next show so if it says 10 minutes, that's the time it takes for the current show to complete.
Walk around the park - It is amazing how we often rush from one attraction to the next or we hurry up and make dining reservations or quick pick me-ups but we never really tend to just take it all in. You know you are going to be walking all day long so why not make it a point to simply...walk.
There is so much more to experience, little food trucks or a shopping venue, perhaps a character appearance that we tend to miss because we are trucking it from one spot to another. Take your time when you have nothing to really "do" and maybe you find an attraction with far lower wait time than you expected or maybe you simply fall into a great spot to watch the Disney parade.