Having recently visited Disney, I've got a few pointers/observations for those going in the future. Trust me folks. :)
1. Arrive at the park as soon as it opens. The lines seems to appear right before your very eyes.
2. FAST PASS IS THE WAY TO GO! Figure out which rides you want to go on first and get fast passes for them first thing. You cannot hold two fast pass for the same time. So, get your first fast pass and then on that ticket it will tell you when you can get your next one. It is usually about an hour after you got the first one.
3. Magic Kingdom is thee most crowded of the 4 parks. MGM was definitely the least crowded. And Epcot was downright manageable if you head to the World Showcase first. Get a fast pass for any rides you want to go on in Futureworld and then go straight to World Showcase. We did not have to wait more than 15 minutes for anything in Epcot. It made it the most enjoyable of all the parks.
4. Animal Kingdom was crowded but there is alot to do in the park. If you do not feel like waiting on lines for rides, you can walk around and learn about animals and feel like you are in a zoo. FUN. I'm glad we saved it for the last day because by then I was tired of waiting on lines.
5. Despite what they say, you can bring your own food into the park. So, go ahead and bring snacks of even sandwiches. You'll thank yourself later when you are tired of eating french fries with every meal. LOL!
6. They really need to give out licenses to those people renting those big plastic vehicles they like to call strollers. You *will* be hit by more than your fair share.
7. People who walk the park eating those big turkey legs look absolutely ridiculous. You look like friggin' Fred Flintstone. Get your self a sandwich and sit down and eat it! :O
8. The Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar is out of the world delicious and practically a steal for $2.50. YUMMOOOOOO!
9. Sunglasses, hat/visor and sunscreen are a must!
10. The character sightings are so few and far between it's sad. I can remember going as a child and seeing them everywhere. Not just these silly designated spots with time slots where the lines are sooooooooooooooo long that your kids give up waiting. :(
11. The parades are a great way to see the characters that you missed. Also there is no need to get to the parade route 30m minutes before to set up. They don't last long enough and there are more than enough places to squeeze into and get a good shot. :)
12. If you have the money, stay on park grounds. They Disney buses run to and from the park like every 5 minutes. If you have a car, the parking is free to all those who stay in a Disney resort. And, there are special events only open to them. They give you special bracelets and you are allowed in the park after hours with special shows.
13. I learned that my 6 year old is a thrill seeker. The scarier the ride the more excited she was. Her an I went on Rockin' Roller Coaster at MGM. It went upside down and all around at what felt like 55 mph in the dark with street signs coming at you. I kid you not. Her teeth were chattering when we got off. But, that did not stop her from going on Expedition Everest the next day. That one goes backwards and forwards and drops 55 feet.
14. All in all. Everyone, should go to Disney at least once in their life. It truly is a magical place.
I took a ton of photos. These are from Epcot (except Mary Poppins-that was from MGM). There was a magnificent Flower and Garden showcase happening when we went. The park was GORGEOUS!!! :) Enjoy!