Backstage Magic Tour

Disney's Description

Note: This is still the description on Disney’s website, but recent tour reviews indicate a change in itenary. See Other Tour Review & Links for details.

Get an in-depth look at the creative and technical operations used behind the scenes to bring innovative special effects, world-class entertainment and elaborate attractions to life.

At Epcot, we’ll reveal some of the exquisite details that make The American Adventure one of our most popular attractions. You’ll see Main Street, U.S.A. at Magic Kingdom theme park in a whole new light after your guide leads you through a hidden world—the legendary underground “Utilidor” tunnel system.

Disney's Topiary Production

From artistic accents to eye-catching designs, nearly everything that surrounds you at Walt Disney World Resort is created and maintained by the artisans of Central Shops whose masterpieces transport you to Fantasyland and beyond. Take a break with a family-style lunch at the Whispering Canyon Café inside Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. Then, see how horticulture and landscape design play a starring role in creating an endless variety of uniquely themed environments at the Walt Disney World Nursery & Tree Farm.

Twilight Zone Tower or Terror HotelHead to Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park and see how Walt Disney Imagineers combined cutting-edge design with breakthrough technology to create the thrilling Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Here, as in every corner of Walt Disney World Resort, wardrobe is an integral part of the magic, so you’ll learn how the Creative Costuming team outfits the performers in Disney parades and shows. Finally, wrap up a most wonderful day at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park with an up-close look at Mickey’s Jammin’ Jungle Parade.

Tour Information

Time & Location : 9am M-F outside Epcot Guest Relations on the far right of the turnstiles.

Duration: 6-8 hours (Realistically, it’s around 7.5-8 hours.)

Cost: $229 + tax (Discounts Available: AAA Diamond, AP, DVC, Disney VISA)

Theme Park Admission: Not included or required. Guests are dropped off back outside Epcot, not inside a park.

Parks Visited: AK, DHS, Epcot, MK

Includes: Lunch at the Whispering Canyon Café inside Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Commemorative Tour Pin

Sample Tour Content*:

  • Backstage at Epcot’s American Adventure Pavilion
  • Creative Costuming
  • Backstage at Disney’s Hollywood Studios’ Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
  • Backstage with Animal Kingdom’s Mickey’s Jammin’ Jungle Expedition
  • Walt Disney World Nursery & Tree Farm
  • Central shops
  • Underground in Magic Kingdom’s famed utilidors

*Disney’s tour schedules and content can change at any time due to a variety of factors. Rest assured, if for some reason the tour can’t or doesn’t go to one of the stops you’ve read about here or on other websites, your Tour Guide still has plenty of magic up their sleeves to make sure you have a wonderful tour experience.

Maximum Group Size: 32. Large groups may have two guides and divide to go inside smaller backstage areas.

Listening Devices Available: Yes

Hearing Disabilities: Yes

Wheelchair Accessible: Yes

Note: Mobility impaired guests using scooters or wheelchairs view the backstage portion of the American Adventure stop from a platform at the entrance to backstage, rather than down in the narrow area directly behind the stage mechanics. Based on our experience, this would not hinder your viewing as it is hard to see in that area regardless of your position.

Requirements: Guests must be 16+; Closed-toe, closed-heel shoes.

Photography Restrictions: No photography is permitted during the backstage portion of this tour (which is most of the time).

Bag Storage: You can leave your baggage on the bus during all stops if you would like. The bus driver stays with the vehicle at all times.  You may also take your bag/purse backstage with you.

Additional Notes: While a good portion of this tour is on a tour bus, still be sure to dress appropriately, wear suncreen & good shoes.  Disney will not cancel or provide refunds for this tour (or most others) in the event of inclement weather (Disney will cancel for hurricanes, but not average rain).

Book: Call (407) WDW-TOUR (407-939-8687)

DTR Review

Check out our full DTR Review of the Backstage Magic tour: Part 1 and Part 2.

Find other DTR posts about the Backstage Magic tour here.

Other Tour Reviews & Links

  • Disney Parks Blog Post This includes a short video which gives you a glimpse at what it is like to stand and listen to Disney tour guides. What it doesn’t convey is the level of *un*comfort experienced if you choose to take a tour in the hot heat of summer. Fortunately, Backstage Magic includes ample time on a much appreciated air-conditioned tour bus.
  • Reader Reviews 6 reviews, latest from March 2012.  While older, mikelan6′s review from 2006 provides a detailed description & spoilers.
  • Fat Hobbit Review by Chris Nilghe from January 2012. This is a two-part, spoiler filled tour report that show just how much tours can change in a year in comparison to our DTR Review from May 2011. Part 1, Part 2.
  • DIS Unplugged Blog Review by HydroGuy.  This review from May 2011 reflects our experience in May 2011 as well.  HydroGuy goes into detail and includes some great photos (which is hard to do when photography is prohibited for 90% of the tour).
  • WDW Info Review by Kevin Klose.  This review, while outdated, provides a detailed, engaging description of the tour by a guy who really knows Disney.
  • Tour Report by Deborah Wills.  Talk about dated, this 1995 report takes us in a time machine back to a time before I realized regular people could actually write things on the internet.  However, this report lets us see how the tour has changed over the years when compared with more recent reviews.  Plus, it is written by *the* Deb Wills of fame!
  • Older, detailed review.  While tour content and pricing has changed, Greg does a good job a remembering some of the cool facts he learned from his tour guide.

Related Podcasts

  • DIS Unplugged Podcast Review Kathy Werling and Will Perry share their February 2009 Backstage Magic tour experience. Kevin Klose also pipes in about his tour from a few years ealier (his written review is mentioned above). This review includes “spoilers” and trivia learned on the tour. If you only want the tour review portion of this podcast, you can start at 1:09:00.

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