24 Things I Learned in (Almost) 24 Straight Hours at Disney

Posted May 31st 2013 11:00 AMUpdated Nov 5th 2013 03:59 PM


24 Hours of Disney

This time last week, I was already many hours into my day at Disney World's Magic Kingdom. A 4 a.m. wakeup call startled me out of bed, and by 5 a.m. I was outside the park with thousands of guests, counting down to the 6 a.m. early opening. In celebration of the start of a self-proclaimed "Monstrous Summer," Disney kept the Magic Kingdom, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure open for 24 hours straight, while promoting the release of its new movie, Monsters University. I was on-site – first in Orlando, then in Anaheim – for some live reporting.

As I discovered, spending 24 hours in three Disney parks between two states is a unique adventure. How often do guests make their way down World Drive to the Magic Kingdom before the sun rises? How many people have experienced Disney California Adventure in the middle of the night, devoid of people, light and sound?

I was given an inside look at the Magic Kingdom by a Disney tour guide who joined the company 18 years ago, fresh out of high school. I ventured solo through a packed Disneyland at 1 a.m., soaking in the excitement on Main Street, USA. And, I spoke to some of the craziest, most enthusiastic Disneyphiles of all ages, who really were going to stay until 6 a.m. the next morning.

What did I learn from of it all? A lot, including these 24 facts and (hopefully) helpful travel tips for your next Disney adventure.

Filed Under: Family, Disney