If you are visiting Walt Disney World then the Magic Kingdom Fireworks have to be on your list of Top 10 things to see. No visit is complete without seeing this spectacular fireworks extravaganza which is staged with Disney’s Cinderella Castle as a back drop.
The Disney Wishes: A Magical Gathering of Disney Dreams fireworks are usually shown nightly, but as with all shows check your daily schedule in advance to avoid disappointment. There are some nights at slower times when it will not be shown. But at busy times Wishes are usually scheduled for two performances each evening.
All the amazing photos are by expressmonorail
What Makes the Magic Kingdom Fireworks So Special?
The Wishes fireworks show is unlike anything else you will have seen. The combination of fireworks, lightning, music and of course Tinker Bell flying across the skies is a wonderfully unique Disney experience.
The show has been running since 8th October 2003 and replaced the Fireworks in The Sky show which had run since Magic Kingdom opened in 1971.
There are also a couple of seasonal versions of the fireworks show: HalloWishes and the very popular Holiday Wishes.
Your hosts are Jiminy Cricket and the Blue Fairy. The theme is – you guessed it – wishes. But wishes can be good or bad and so the popular Disney theme of good versus evil plays out in this display. Of course we all know that if you wish upon a star your dreams will come true (come on the cynical ones amongst you)!
Disney Wishes is 12 minutes of Disney magic. The show features music from the popular Disney movies including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Fantasia, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Hercules and The Little Mermaid.
The only character who actually appears in person is Tinker Bell. Make sure that you look up at the start of the show to see her flying across the skies!
The show is so much more than fireworks. Guests marvel at the changing colors and images projected on Cinderella’s Castle.
Many feel that Magic Kingdom Wishes is the very best of all of the fireworks shows in any of the Disney theme parks world wide. No visit to Magic Kingdom is complete without a viewing of the show!
Where are the Best Places To View the Magic Kingdom Fireworks?
This is one of those Disney questions which causes a lot of debate! Regular visitors tend to work out their own favorite viewing spots. I have my own particular favorites:
On the platform of the Magic Kingdom Railroad. This is a great spot not only because you get a good, elevated view of the Castle and fireworks, but also because it is a good spot from which to exit the park as soon as the show is over. As you can imagine, when the fireworks end it feels as if everyone in the whole park is leaving at the same time. That is because they are! That can add up to a whole lot of people wanting to get onto the monorail or the boat. If you want to be ahead of the crowd then it is good to be at the bottom of Main Street so you can get a good start!
Another favorite place is just outside the Plaza Restaurant at the other end of Main Street closer to Cinderella Castle. This is a particularly great place if you get there early enough to get a table. You get a good view of the show and of course you can rest your tired feet at the same time.
If you want a rather different experience and are not watching the fireworks for the first time why not try this? An interesting place to experience the fireworks is whilst riding either Splash Mountain or Big Thunder Mountain. Big Thunder Mountain is better than Splash Mountain because of course Big Thunder is outside all the time. You can get the timing a little wrong with Splash Mountain as of course a lot of it is inside!
Another great viewing spot in Adventureland if you want to watch the fireworks with your feet on solid ground is just by the exit of Big Thunder Mountain near the geyser.
Even though Fantasyland is at the back of Cinderella Castle it does have some great viewing spots. The disadvantage is that you can’t see Tinkerbell and of course you are watching something from the back which is designed to be seen from the front! But the advantage is that it tends to be a lot quieter and you are more likely to be able to find a place to sit and a place away from the crowds. If you do view from Fantasyland then usually it is better to wait for a while to give the chance for the crowds to die down a bit getting through Main Street. Otherwise it can be quite a difficult walk out, particularly if you have young children.
For a good view of Tinker Bell it is good to watch on the Tomorrowland side of the Castle. A favorite spot is outside Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe. You do have to get there pretty early to get a table though.
There are of course places where you can watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks outside of the park. A favorite spot is the California Grill is Disney’s Contemporary Resort Hotel. This is an amazing restaurant and the view of the Wishes fireworks is amazing. You do have to be dining there to have access to the restaurant. This didn’t always used to be the case but Disney got wise to the fact that non diners were also enjoying this amazing view, so restricted access to patrons only.
Another good place to view is from the beach at the Grand Floridian. It is usually very quiet and peaceful – a very romantic spot to watch the fireworks from.
One very overlooked place to watch the fireworks is from the back porch at Narcoossee’s Grill at the Grand Floridian Resort. They even play the music so you can enjoy the full effect of the display.
The beach at the Disney Polynesian Resort is another great viewing spot. They are quite a lot of chairs there and usually it is not crowded.
Of course there are so many places to view the Magic Kingdom fireworks and everyone has a favorite spot. Leave me a Comment and let me know which is your favorite.
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Alison Meacham is the founder of EverythingMouse Disney Blog. For over 15 years she has shared her love of Disney Parks, Disney Cruises and Universal Orlando. In over 30 years of Disney Travel she has spent countless months in Disney Parks and has sailed on over 45 cruises. A British native and now a United States resident she splits her time between California, Florida and the UK. And spends a serious amount of time sailing the seven seas. She helps over 200,000 people per month follow their Disney travel dreams.