Review of the new Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom
by Sarah Lephart
There is a new Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom. This new addition offers some fun experiences for children to meet some favorite princesses including Belle and Ariel. Our family went to Fantasyland first to make sure we were able to explore all the new activities. I think we could have spent the entire day in this one area!
Our first stop was Belle’s Enchanted Tale. This is a neat way to meet Belle, and the way this experience is set up, the line moves along quite quickly.
At Belle’s Enchanted Tale, each guest actually gets to be a part of reenacting the story of how Belle and the Beast meet! The experience starts in Belle’s cottage. While you wait for your group to go in (they take about 50 people at a time), you can see where Belle grew up. Then, you are brought into the castle where you meet the Wardrobe, who talked to us! The Wardrobe chose children from the group to play the different parts for the reenacting of the story. Anyone who wanted to be part of the story was given the opportunity to do so.
Then we went into the sitting room of the castle to start the story. It was very well done, and Lumiere (the candle) helped with the retelling of the story. The animatronics of Lumiere and Wardrobe were amazing! Belle entered the room, and then all of the characters were walked through the tale of Belle meeting the Beast.
After the story was done, we all had a chance to meet Belle and have our picture taken with her. My oldest daughter, age 8, was star-struck meeting Belle. The actress who played Belle complimented my daughter on her pink outfit, and it made her day. This was an experience she will never forget.
Another addition to Fantasyland is, Under the Sea - Journey of the Little Mermaid. We got a Fastpass for this ride, as it was very popular since it is so new. Hop aboard a clamshell, while you ride along to relive the story of how Ariel met Prince Eric. The songs are all played as you ride along through the scenes of The Little Mermaid. The ride was very slow, perfect for little ones. The scenes were amazing, and looked very real. A great ride for Little Mermaid fans!
You can also meet Ariel at Ariel’s Grotto.
There are also two new restaurants in Fantasyland including Gaston’s Tavern and Be Our Guest Restaurant. Gaston’s Tavern is more casual and you can just drop in, plus you can meet Gaston while you are there. If you want to go to Be Our Guest Restaurant, you will want to make reservations ahead of time.
Along with these new additions, you can also visit some classic rides like Dumbo the Flying Elephant and the Barnstormer.
Good news: There is even more coming to Fantasyland over the next year, we saw the beginning construction of a new ride, The Mine Train, which looks like it will be an exciting new ride with the Seven Dwarfs and Snow White. The new Fantasyland is the biggest addition in Magic Kingdom history! If you haven’t been to the Magic Kingdom for awhile, you will want to make sure you visit again soon!
© 2013, KidsOutAndAbout.com
Sarah Lephart is editor of KidsOutAndAbout for the Ann Arbor - Detroit area.