Part 1: Magic Kingdom
Visiting the parks at Disney World wouldn’t be the same without getting to see one of your favorite characters! Our family loves visiting as many characters as we can each trip, and of course, we bring our autograph books. But getting a chance to talk with and take a treasured photo with a character is part of the Disney magic. It also takes a little planning and finesse!
I would like to offer some pointers and advice for each park on getting to see your family’s favorite characters and making it memorable. Disney does change the characters that are available throughout the parks so my list is only up-to-date as of this summer. Here are some general pointers for seeing the characters:
1. Before you even arrive for your vacation, decide which characters you want to intentionally visit at each park. It is best to have a plan and narrow down the list of who is most important. Character Meets are listed on the calendar on the Disney World website.
2. When you arrive at the park, grab a Times Guide and see if the characters you are looking for have the same times you had planned. Times and characters can change on any day, so always be flexible.
3. If you plan to do autograph books, be prepared while waiting in line with page and pen ready. Characters are always ready to sign autograph books while they interact with your kids. For how to make your own autograph book, visit our popular DIY Disney post on Autograph Books.
4. Take pictures of your kids interacting with them as well as posing. Some of my favorite pictures are the candid pictures.
5. The best times to get a picture with the characters are first thing in the morning, during meal times, and late at night (if they are there toward park closing). Be aware that some characters take 15 minute breaks and that time isn’t always posted, so wait times could be longer that you think.
6. Face characters (those where you can see their real face) are great with impromptu interactions. Have your kids think of great questions to ask them, like asking Peter Pan “What does pixie dust feel like?”.
7. Besides a posed picture, also take a silly or fun character picture pose. Sometimes those turn out much better than just standing and smiling.
8. Unless you want grumpy faces in your pictures, limit how many character greets you do each day otherwise your kids will be burned out. While each child is different, waiting in lines over and over again without a ride at the end will wear on most children.
At the parks, there are two ways to meet with characters: Character Dining and Character Greets. We are only talking about Character Greets in this post. These are the spots throughout the park where you wait a bit in line to talk with the character and get some pictures.
Here are some of my favorite greets, as well as a list of all the current Character Greets at Magic Kingdom.
The Mickey Meet & Greet is located on Main Street at the Town Square Theater. You can get a FastPass for this greet which I highly recommend. The inside is quiet and Mickey is wonderful! Also, the FastPasses are NOT connected with the FastPass system so you can get another ride FastPass at the same time. The Princess Meet & Greet is also located at the theater and has a FastPass, which I recommend as well.
Peter Pan and Wendy are located just past the Peter Pan’s Flight attraction (around the corner). They are wonderful face characters and offer great interactions with the kids. Don’t forget to ask for a “Tinkerbell” picture with them!
Stitch is located in Tomorrowland. While we didn’t do it here, taking a crazy picture with him is a must!
You can meet Belle in New Fantasyland at the attraction “Enchanted Tales with Belle” which my kids loved! Belle was very sweet, and they got lovely pictures with her in her pretty yellow dress. If you are wanting her in her lovely blue dress, she has a Greet at Epcot in this outfit.
At Ariel’s Grotto in New Fantasyland, you can meet with Ariel as a mermaid! That was exciting for our kids to see her as a mermaid, and the queue is pretty fun.
Tink and her fairy friends are located in Adventureland in TinkerBell’s Magical Nook. We actually stumbled upon it late one night and there was almost no wait…which made this Meet and Greet even better!
There is always another fairy with TinkerBell and this time we were really lucky to meet Vidia…we have almost met them all! But Vidia was lots of fun with the kids and they were almost more excited to see her than TinkerBell! (almost) The one downside is that you won’t know what fairy is with TinkerBell until you get inside, so don’t promise your kids anything!
Princess Tiana still has her own Greet area and sometimes Prince Naveen is with her. Her dress is quite beautiful! She is located near the entrance to Liberty Square. This is a picture of my niece getting to meet her.
The White Rabbit and Alice greet people near the Mad Tea Party. There are other places you can find Alice, but this is the only one with the White Rabbit, and he is pretty fun.
Woody and Jessie greet folks near Splash Mountain, actually right at the exit to Splash Mountain. Their meet and greet is kind of hidden which can sometimes mean shorter waits. This is the only place to get a picture with Jessie.
Here is a complete list of Characters Greets at Magic Kingdom including location:
Town Square Theater: Mickey; Princesses including Aurora, Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White
Main Street: Marie from Aristocats, Mary Poppins
The Nook in Adventureland: Tinkerbell & Friends (different fairies vary each visit)
Peter Pan’s Flight: Peter Pan & Wendy
Ariel’s Grotto: Ariel as a mermaid
Enchanted Tales with Belle: Belle (in yellow dress)
Mad Tea Party: Alice, White Rabbit
Winnie the Pooh ride: Tigger and Pooh
Cinderella’s Castle (on different sides): Fairy Godmother, Merida (in her own Meet & Greet area), Anastasia, Drisella and Lady Tremaine
Pete’s Silly Sideshow: Daisy, Donald, Goofy, Minnie (in circus themed outfits)
Gaston’s Tavern: Gaston
Adventureland (near Aladdin’s Carpet attraction): Aladdin & Jasmine
Liberty Square/Christmas Store: Princess Tiana & Prince Naveen
Splash Mountain Exit: Woody & Jessie
Tomorrowland: Buzz, Stitch
Frontierland: Chip and Dale
Always keep in mind that waiting for character greets can take a long time, and if you are only visiting the park one or two days, you will need to be selective beforehand for which characters you really want to see.
For more character greet tips and advice, visit our Disney World tips page, and read the other posts in this series: