Ryan and I have enjoyed roller coasters together since we started dating. Regular attendance at theme parks and trips to the beach are our signature getaways. It’s a good mix of thrill and relaxation. If you’ve been following along this year, you know we bought annual passes to Disney World. We are most certainly getting our monies worth! Prior to this year, neither of us had been to a Disney park since 2009. We’ve now visited all of the parks and rode nearly all of the rides. So I thought I’d share of favorites and not so favorite rides with you all.
Ryan and I pretty much agree on our list of favorites, except for one particular ride. The Tower of Terror is one of his absolute favorite rides at Hollywood Studios, and I absolutely dread it. Nothing about the sensation of falling is appealing to me. The actual theme is great, and I’m all about the Twilight Zone. That ride aside, here’s our favorites (not in any particular order).
1. Frozen Ever After
This is the perfect family friendly ride. Disney did an incredible job with the theming of this ride. All of the characters come to life in a beautiful way as the town of Arendelle celebrates a ‘Summer Snow Day’. This musical boat ride is worth the wait. It’s located in Norway at Epcot. We highly recommend grabbing a Fast Pass for this one.
2. Mission: SPACE (Orange Mission)
Blast off to Mars (Orange) or orbit the Earth (Green) on this exciting ride at Epcot. I absolutely love this space shuttle like experience. I’ve personally never gotten sick, but Ryan did struggle the first time we rode it. If you think you’re going to get sick on this one, we encourage you to take the green mission. You literally feel like you’re hurtling through space, and it’s amazing. The g-force from the launch is intense and my personal favorite part of the whole experience. I’m obviously not an astronaut, but I feel this ride captures the feeling. I don’t know how else you’d get to experience something like that. It’s incredible.
3. Slinky Dog Dash
This ride is so much fun. Expect to wait unless you purchase a ticket to a special ticketed event, which is what we did. We got to ride it three times, and we both loved it even more with each ride. This coaster actually has some speed to it (40 mph). It’s not just for kids and is located at Hollywood Studios. Disney did an incredible job theming this one too. You really feel like you’re in Andy’s backyard. Just wait until you zoom into the musical finale with Wheezy.
4. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
This is another popular ride for good reason. My absolute favorite part is riding through the mine and seeing the dwarfs hard at work (well some of them). This coaster features some great hills and again, the theming is spot on. There are a couple of photo opportunities on this ride, so be sure to check your pictures. This ride is located at Magic Kingdom.
5. Expedition Everest
This is probably my favorite roller coaster at Disney. You know it’s a great thrill ride when you get that dropping sensation in your stomach. Some children may find the plummet backwards into darkness terrifying. We think it’s great. Don’t forget to be on the lookout for the Yeti. By far the best ride at Animal Kingdom.
6. Haunted Mansion
This is Ryan’s favorite ride. We must ride it at least twice when we visit Magic Kingdom. They have continued to update it over the years, and the holograms are really neat. The photo spot is weird (recently added), because it’s located right at the beginning. This is great ride if you want to escape the heat outside. I imagine this ride is even better during the Halloween season.
We had a bit of back and forth on this list. It really comes down to preference.
1. Flight of Passage
We were not impressed with the world of Pandora. This ride in particular is super uncomfortable. We can’t imagine waiting two hours to ride this (thank goodness for Fast Passes). Upon riding, you enter a variety of lab like areas. You are then confined to this contraption which you feel like it shocks you (it’s the weird vibration feeling), and I just felt trapped the entire time. It’s similar to Soarin’ at Epcot but more jarring. The imagery is really neat. Ryan and I looked at each other when we got off…like nope.
I literally turned 29 while riding this unfortunate ride. We actually waited in line for this one, and it wasn’t worth it. You enter a vehicle and are transported back in time to find a dinosaur. None of it makes any sense. It is an indoor ride, which is good if you need to escape the heat. Disney revamped this ride many years ago, but I think they just need to retire it. It should be extinct.
3. it’s a small world
This ride is iconic, but it becomes annoying quick. How many times can you really listen to that song? Over and over and over…. It’s also a fairly long ride or maybe time stands still if that song is on loop. I don’t know, but this ride is a once and done for me. Ryan actually started counting the ceiling tiles while on board. He was trying to figure out roughly how much they spent on ceiling tiles. Anyway, the actual ride itself (excluding the song) is cute.