If you’re reading this review to learn fun Disney trivia or find out every little detail about the Family Magic Tour, let me stop you here. This is not going to be one of those kind of reviews because it’s not that kind of tour. Disney’s Family Magic Tour at the Magic Kingdom is a different kind of tour all together. It is less about learning about the magic, and more about discovering it.
Before we get any further, I’m going to admit what is considered by many to be a cardinal sin. I am not a cat person. Some cats are nice. I can even find them pleasant to be around on occasion. However, I don’t want to clean up after them, listen to them yowl or have any of my own. Pictures of cats do not elicit any cute-response in my body. Incidentally, this is exactly how I feel about children as well.
As the name suggests, the Family Magic Tour is for families. Families tend to involve children. So I’m sure my fellow tour guests were a little surprised to see me show up with my adult sister in tow. Fortunately, she gamely volunteered to join me on this, easily my oddest, tour review.
Despite our clear childlessness, we were welcomed to the group with open arms. No one batted an eye, though I felt the need to mention that I was on a mission to do EVERY tour at Walt Disney World. The four
cats children on our tour were all delightful and listened to the guide with rapt attention.
The premise is that you’re supposed to go on a tour of the park…but (in usual Disney fashion) something has gone horribly wrong! Now Mickey Mouse is depending on you to save the Magic Kingdom from being taken over by evil villains. With some good thoughts and a little Mickey dust (different than pixie dust), your tour group is off to solve clues on a scavenger hunt throughout the park.
Since the whole tour is spent figuring out puzzles, I’m not going to give away any of the answers here. Instead, I’m going to skip ahead to my observations and recommendations.
A few things to know about this tour:
- The whole tour group completes the scavenger hunt together with the tour guide. For some unknown reason, I thought we split into teams with our own treasure maps.
- This 10am tour ends outside of Pirates of the Caribbean right around 11:30am.
- The Magic Kingdom’s pavement is excruciatingly hot from 10am-11:30am. This is the shortest outdoor tour, and it was the most unbearable for me sun-exposure wise. We went in early May, and I thought I was going to have to quit halfway through. Two days later, we (almost) completed an Ultimate Touring plan - and I was less miserable running around doing 42 attractions in one day than on this tour.
- Check the weather, dress appropriately, wear sunscreen & hold on to the free bottled water from check-in for dear life! Tour guides make a point to try and keep guests in the shade; unfortunately, the Family Magic Tour path is rarely shade-adjacent. Waiting for small children to figure out clues while developing sun poisoning has now been incorporated into my version of Hell. It was that serious.
- This tour does not involve visiting any attractions. Some of the older reviews mention going to see Mickey’s PhilharMagic at the end of the tour. This was not the case in on our tour.
Overall, I would recommend this tour for anyone who believes in magic. Kids who clap their hands to save Tinkerbell will love solving mysteries to save the kingdom.
Older kids who don’t believe in Mickey dust and dastardly villains should skip this tour. The Magic Kingdom is full of other attractions and activities for older children, and they may actually ruin it for younger kids in the group.
Families looking for something else to do are also good candidates for the tour. You’ve done the Dumbo-dash, met every character, been Bibbidi-Bobbidi’d, joined the Pirates League, and are looking for a new experience. Behind the Seeds over at Epcot also accommodates guests of all ages, but the Family Magic Tour is specifically designed for kids.
I would not recommend this tour for anyone who concerned with hitting as many attractions as possible. If watching other families tear past on their way to Buzz Lightyear is going to upset your little princess or pirate, save yourself the money and frustration. Mind you, the princesses and pirates on my tour were too busy figuring out the next clue to notice anyone else in the park.
If you aren’t willing to growl or prance through the the Magic Kingdom in front of 50,000 other guests, don’t take this tour. The more the parents get into the silliness, the more fun everybody has. Dads hamming it up as ballerinas get double bonus points.
Currently, the Family Magic Tour is offered everyday at 10am starting from the Chamber of Commerce (just under the train bridge, on the right). It costs $34 + tax (Discounts available) and requires separate park admission.
*If you want to learn more about the Disney’s Family Magic Tour, be sure to check out our tour page here. In addition to finding tour restrictions and discounts, we’ve included links to reviews and podcasts from other websites so you check out other people’s opinions on this tour.
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