Guide2WDW reader Abbey wrote in this week with a great tip about how she chooses to avoid the crowds during the Festival of Fantasy parade at Magic Kingdom.

“When watching the Festival of Fantasy Parade at 3pm, we stood on the side of the street under the train station at the front of the park. By doing so, we didn’t get stuck with the crowd following the parade out of the park. We got out of the park easily and were one of the first ones to get on a monorail to Epcot.”

Abbey’s tip brings up a bigger point: Choose your parade viewing spot wisely. It’s simple, takes a little bit of planning, and can save you some time and frustration during your Disney World vacation.

Festival of Fantasy Viewing Tip: Dragon

A spot near the Main Street train station works great if you want a quick exit from the park. If this was part of my plan, I would go to Magic Kingdom right around opening. There’s plenty of time between rope drop and the 3 PM parade to get a lot of stuff done. I would just be sure to get to the train station by 2:45. If I was dead set on getting a front row spot, I would make that 2:30. Like Abbey, I could beat the crowds out, and easily park hop to another park or just take a break at my hotel. This spot would obviously also work for the nighttime Main Street Electrical parade as well, although more people will be exiting the park at the same time.

What if you want to stay in the park after the parade?

Main Street and the hub are typically the most crowded spots for the parade, but they do offer the most iconic views. Just be sure to choose a spot that has easy access to whatever you want to do after. Even if you can’t get a good spot in the hub, just make sure you’re on the right side of the street. Trust me on this one. I’ve played human Frogger way too many times trying to cut across Main Street foot traffic after a parade or fireworks. For Tomorrowland and Fantasyland, stay on the righthand side of Main Street. For Frontierland and Adventureland, stay on the lefthand side.

Also remember the the parade route stretches all the way to Frontierland. I usually prefer to watch a parade from Frontierland or Liberty Square because the crowds don’t feel as overwhelming as compared to Main Street. There’s also easy access to attractions like Big Thunder, Splash Mountain, and Haunted Mansion.

Even if you don’t care about watching the parade, always be aware of when there’s a parade going on. Make sure you’re where you want to be in the park before the parade starts. Navigating your way across the Magic Kingdom can be an absolute nightmare if the parade is in your way.

What’s your favorite spot to watch the parades at Magic Kingdom? Let me know in the comments below!

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