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Disney After Dark

We all have our favorite Disney memories, but we realized a lot of ours actually occurred after dusk.   So tonight’s blog we are dedicating to all of the fans out there who love there Disney “after dark.”

Nothing says magic like seeing Cinderella’s Castle lit up, but what’s even more breathtaking is watching it change colors though out the night.  Just, wow.   Walking into Tomorrow Land and seeing the neon purple and orange light that light up this area- you truly get that “space age” feeling.  One of our favorite rides at night is the TTA (Tomorrowland Transit Authority).  It is a great way to get an aerial view of Tomorrowland and also a great shot of the castle. I guess food and drink are not allowed on this ride, but we have been known to enjoy an icee and pretzel from the snack bar below, from time to time. (With CM Permission of course).

Crossing over to the other side, we head into Adventureland.  It always seems much darker on this side of the park, as you walk past the Jungle Cruise and Aladdin’s Carpet Ride. We have one place that’s perfect at night: Pirates of the Caribbean. I know it doesn’t make much sense; the ride is IN the building. But there is something about walking up to that building, seeing that large pirate ship mast, and entering the caves as night surrounds us.  But what tops the top is walking up to the Haunted Mansion, you hear the wolves howling, the dirge music playing outside, and you can just feel the chills start up your spine.  I’m usually not that scared from HM, but at night, it just takes on whole new feel.

But as beautiful as the MK is at night, Epcot bests them all. Spaceship Earth’s colors shimmering against the black sky filled with stars, another wow moment.   After looking up at that spectacular scene, have you ever stopped to look down at the ground? Around the backside of SE, the sidewalk glitters with fiber optic lights – kind of like walking on a trail of pixie dust. Another site to behold in the dark is the Fountain of Nations… not only does it light up in several colors, but it plays to music as well.  You can catch this fountain show during the day, but seeing it all lit up is just something pretty cool.

A stroll through the World Showcase is ever so romantic after hours, and is a great way to see how every country is lit up. After a stroll, we love to take a spin in the dark night on “Test Track.”  We suggest also seeing the outside of “Mission Space” at night… just incredible.

One of our favorite memories was walking into Epcot, and checking out the old “Food Rocks” show while everyone was waiting for “Illuminations.” It was an empty show, our family sang along with all of the songs, and we got to walk out into virtually an empty Future World. Seeing the fountain outside of the Imagination Pavilion at night was just priceless.

We haven’t experienced much at Animal Kingdom because of the early park closing hours, so last but not least is Disney Hollywood Studios.   Another visit down memory lane- Carl and I and the kids were walking around the back streets and there wasn’t a single soul around. We actually started to get a bit freaked out because it felt like the park had closed and forgot us! After we got near Pizza Planet, we saw more people, but it definitely seemed like the start of a scary movie. On occasion, after watching Fantasmic!, we would hang back until everyone, or most everyone had left the outdoor theater. It was very cool to walk around and talk to the Cast Members, and take that last stroll on an empty street before exiting the park.

While Disney World is beautiful during the day, it takes on a whole new feeling at night. So, we want to know, what is your favorite memory or moment that you have experience at Walt Disney World after dark.

Carl and Ellie.


  1. Couldn’t agree more! When I look back at all the pictures I’ve taken while at WDW the majority of my favorites are at night. The lighting really adds another layer to all the attractions. Good article. Keep them coming.

    My wife and I are planning on moving after the kids get out of school. Three and a half more years. Interested in reading how your adventure goes. Thanks.


  2. I read somewhere that you see more on rides like Haunted Mansion at night because your eyes have adjusted to nighttime. Unlike daytime touring, you’re not coming into the mansion from the glaring sun. We rode Pirates during our last late night. We had a boat all to ourselves. Like you said, it was a little creepy floating through there. But let’s be honest, wouldn’t it be fantastic if the park closed and we were still in it!


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