The Magic Kingdom has plenty of Kodak moments, but it is also one of the most difficult parks to photograph. The biggest problem is that the park is crowded shortly after it opens. Therefore, arriving at least 30 minutes prior to opening and immediately moving to the area you want to shoot is a must. The new opening ceremonies, now held at Cinderella’s castle, make it especially difficult to take pictures of this iconic landmark. The only way to get this done is to arrive even earlier, along with the first guests to enter the park.
Crowds are not the only problem. Cranes and fences, such as those erected for months during construction and refurbishments, are also a major headache. Selfie sticks were a huge nuisance until Disney banned their use from all parks. Pictures of the castle show are also no easy task. The area quickly fills up with guests, and parents, understandably, put their small children on their shoulders for a better view. A front row position does not help much either, as the wall in front of the castle is too high. The best way to get descent show pictures is to bring a tripod, position yourself in front of the friendship statue, and zoom in. Standing on the wall of the friendship statue works, but cast members are likely to ask guests not to do so.
While unglamorous, one way to get great shots of the parades is to stand behind one of the garbage cans on the right hand side of the hub, facing Cinderella castle. Disney does not allow any seating in front of said garbage cans, so the view is somewhat unobstructed. From this position, only balloons and umbrellas that some guests hold to shield themselves against the sun can ruin the view.
With so many obstacles, worrying about the weather becomes secondary. However, when all stars are aligned, it is immensely rewarding to walk through the park and shoot away.
We have put together a slide show with our favorite pictures.
There are many special places to photograph at the Magic Kingdom, and, depending on the season, some are more interesting than others. One picture, however, is always just fabulous and that is the twinkling lights covering Cinderella’s castle at Christmas.
We’d love to hear from you. Tell us: What is your favorite spot for taking pictures at the Magic Kingdom? If you enjoyed this post, sign up for our newsletter here. For more information on all there is to see and do at Disney’s Magic Kingdom check out The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World by Bob Sehlinger and Len Testa.