'; Think Twice about these Attractions with Toddlers! - WDW Hints
Tuesday 16 July 2019
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Think Twice about these Attractions with Toddlers!

I recently wrote about some attractions at Disney World that are great for toddlers.  The idea was sparked by a memory of my 2½ year old son flipping out during Mickey’s Philharmagic.  Who know that would scare him?!   I was really surprised by how many of the attractions that I didn’t think would scare him, really did!  If you’re planning a trip, here is a list of attractions that you may want to think about twice before attempting with a little one.  (Keep in mind; I’m not listing any obvious attractions like roller coaster style rides.)

Magic Kingdom

Mickey’s Philharmagic – Even though it’s in Fantasyland, this 4D movie (thank you Disney for that cool invention) has loud music, moments in the dark and water that squirts on you during the movie.  Not great for a little one.

Peter Pan’s Flight – Now, this is a very slow and very tame ride, but portions are in the dark, so you may want to avoid it if your little one is afraid of the dark.  We had no problems with my 2 ½ year old, but it’s worth giving a second thought.

Animal Kingdom

It’s Tough to Be a Bug – Disney does a pretty good job of warning people about this attraction before they enter with toddlers and I have to agree.  It’s another 4D movie with water squirts and a few funny for adults (but scary for kids) moments towards the end.  

Primeval Whirl – This fairly tame roller coaster may be the perfect introduction to your child to roller coasters, but it’s still pretty fast and may scare little ones.  There is a height restriction though which stops any child shorter than 48” from riding.

Hollywood Studios

Muppet Vision 3D – This is another 4D movie in the dark with loud sound effects that may scare small children.  We were able to distract my son with a glow stick when he got scared.

Studio Backlot Tour – My 4 year old panicked after the first explosion at the beginning of this attraction.  We didn’t make it past the outdoor area that shows the special effects during a movie.  Who knows what would have happened if we’d actually made it onto the tram.


Journey into Imagination with Figment – This is a slow moving ride through the Imagination Institute with one of my favorite characters, Figment.  It’s got bright colors, fun music and times of complete darkness and others when air is blown into your face.  It’s not too scary, but it may startle a little one.

Maelstrom – This is considered a family friendly attraction in Norway, but there is a decent size drop during the ride that may scare children.

So, there are plenty of attractions to consider before jumping on with a toddler.  I’m not suggesting you avoid them completely because your child may love them! And, keep in mind that Disney does a good job of restricting access to scarier attractions with height restrictions and warning signs outside before you enter.

What do you think?  Anything you feel you have to avoid when traveling with a toddler?


Amy is a Disney loving mom of two Disney loving boys. She loves planning for Disney trips, reading about Walt Disney World and most of all, going to World Disney World!

  • For us it’s been about talking to our toddler and trying to explain before we go. Once or twice, we’ve forced him because he tends to be “overly” scared a couple times. Before you accuse me of being a bad parent – an example. He LOVES Toy Story but if we got near the Buzz Lightyear ride, would get upset and say he didn’t want to ride it. We talked to him a little and then with some firm guidance, took him through the line. Now it’s one of his favorite rides.

    We’ve had similar experiences with some of your list and the opposite with parts as well. Yep – every kid is different! Philharmagic, no way. Peter Pan, loves it! I could see the Barnstormer being a toss-up. We have very much avoided Haunted Mansion (but I’ve seen toddlers that love it), although both our young boys love Pirates.

    I’m glad you mentioned Figment. We don’t like that ride, but thought the boys would because of the colors and movement, but now I think I may try it out first.

  • Katie

    I don’t remember the ‘official’ name for the ride, but the stitch ride is probably not a good idea either. You’re in the dark for the whole ride and there are big gun like things.

  • Stitch’s Great Escape (and the very beginning of Haunted Mansion) are the two things that scared my daughter. (5 at the time and it was our 2nd trip in one year)

  • Nw

    This is a great list but its all relative to the kid and your parenting style. Our daughter was 1 1/2 last time she went and her favorite rides its a small world and the haunted mansion. We had to ride Pirates 4 times because she refused to get off. At just three now, she wants to ride tower of terror. We watched the YouTube videos of many of the rides so going in its not a surprise to her. It really is a toss up

  • Amandalee933

    Great blog! Do you remember if the muppets 4d had any air blown on you? Someone in our party actually loses their breath and can’t breathe right when that happens. Thanks for any information you may have:)

  • Hi Amanda, As far as air blowing on you- there aren’t any “puffs” of air that come at you, but there is a “vacuum” scene and there is a slight breeze that comes from behind you to act as if the room is being “vacuumed” toward the stage. I’d suggest talking to a cast member that works in the attraction, or sending someone in your party through first to see if it will be a “trigger” or not. -Terri (WDW Hints)