These top 9 things to do at Disney World after dark show off the theme parks in new ways — and at their best. After dark there are fewer people, it’s cooler and you’ll also see things daytime visitors never do.
1. Visit (or revisit) Animal Kingdom after dark for a totally different perspective of a park that always closed before sunset. New features, such as Rivers of Light, make the park shine at night. More so with a dining package and premium seating.
2. Enjoy an up-close wildlife experience by taking the Starlight Safari at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. This tour is open to area residents and guests at non-Disney properties.
3. Visit the Hoop-Dee-Doo-Musical-Revue at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort. This rollicking hootenanny is one of Disney’s best shows. Fried chicken and smoked BBQ pork ribs dinners are included. And they are as good as the entertainers, which is saying something.
4. Ride the Rock ‘n’Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Although it’s jarring to go from bright sunlight into darkness, the adjustment is easy at night. And it makes the nighttime flight over Hollywood seem a more real. The coaster’s launch from 0 to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds is just as terrifying at night as during the day.
5. Ride the Magic Kingdom’s WDW Railroad to see the park in a new light (or not) when it’s dark. A train ride is always fun, especially after sundown. Complete the circuit or get off at Frontierland or Toontown.
6. Take a 20-minute ride on the Liberty Square Riverboat. It’s not the most exciting ride, but a jaunt offers good photo ops of the Magic Kingdom.
7. Enjoy the Spirit of Aloha luau all-you-care-to-enjoy feast in the open-air theater in Luau Cove at the Polynesian Hotel. The show features dancers, drummers and an exciting fire-knife performer in a rousing celebration of the cultures of Hawaii and the South Pacific.
8. For children over 54 inches, the Magic Kingdom’s Tomorrowland Speedway offers the opportunity to drive their own gas-powered race car with the headlights on.
9. At some point you’ll watch Epcot’s IllumiNations fireworks show. Why not relax with a glass of wine or beer on the outside patio at the Germany Pavilion?
Slow down to enjoy these 9 things to do at Disney World after dark. Take time to notice and enjoy the elaborate details. Once you pause to appreciate their intricate design elements, the parks take on a whole new appeal.