Magic Kingdom Struggling, Could Lose Title of Most-Visited Theme Park

in Walt Disney World

An empty Tomorrowland at Magic Kingdom

Credit: Greg C via Unsplash

If you’ve visited Walt Disney World Resort lately, odds are that you’ve noticed crowds are a little thinner than usual. Florida is suffering from a huge dip in attendance this summer, with Magic Kingdom seemingly struggling the most.

Disney World Guests first started noticing slower Magic Kingdom crowds and shorter lines earlier this year. Over Memorial Day Weekend – which is typically one of Walt Disney World’s busiest periods – Disney Parks were significantly emptier than usual. The same was true on the Fourth of July, which ranked as the emptiest holiday at the Resort in ten years.

Disney World looking empty
Credit: @innoventioneast via Twitter

Related: How to Deal With CROWDS at Walt Disney World

While Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Josh D’Amaro has himself commented on the moderate crowds at Walt Disney World, Disney CEO Bob Iger was quick to dismiss the idea in an interview earlier this month. Iger put the lack of large crowds down to heat (this year marked Orlando’s hottest Fourth of July in 25 years) – an argument that doesn’t quite hold up when one considers that Disney World has always been, and will always be, hot in July.

Since then, there’s been hot debate online about whether the Walt Disney World Parks are truly empty. Some Guests have cited long lines as proof that the Parks are as busy as ever, while other Guests have pinned the wait times on complications of Disney’s unpopular Genie system that replaced FastPass.

Empty Magic Kingdom on July 4
Credit: @DisneyGirlRo via TikTok

According to the latest data, Disney World isn’t quite as empty as one would think. At least, not now – and not in three of the four Parks. Thrill Data reports that attendance was up by 69.2% for EPCOT and 4.5% for Animal Kingdom yesterday (July 28). Hollywood Studios remained pretty steady, with a decrease of just 3.9%.

Magic Kingdom, however, saw a significant drop. Attendance dipped by 30.3% on July 28 – a pretty major decrease considering that it’s supposedly the most popular Walt Disney World Resort Park.

The Magic Kingdom is the place to be today. The other #DisneyWorld parks are busier.

Home to Cinderella Castle and fan-favorite attractions such as TRON Lightcycle /Run, Pirates of the Caribbean, Space Mountain, Haunted Mansion, and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Magic Kingdom has repeatedly held the title of the world’s most-visited theme park. It maintained its title in 2022, attracting 17.13 million visitors.

Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: Cesira Alvarado via Unsplash

Related: When Should You Avoid Magic Kingdom?

While a drop of 30.3% doesn’t necessarily mean the Park is empty – and also doesn’t guarantee fewer visitors than other Disney parks – this is just another stat that suggests some kind of negative decline over at Magic Kingdom. With so many other numbers and reports along these lines lately, it does bring up the question of whether Magic Kingdom can hold on to the title for 2023.

Disneyland Park placed second in 2022, with 16.88 million visitors – which isn’t far off Magic Kingdom. Disneyland Resort is reportedly experiencing the opposite of Walt Disney World right now, with attendance on the rise. Is it enough to overtake its East Coast sister as the most-visited Disney Park, not to mention theme park, in the world?

As we head into what is typically some of the busiest times of year – Halloween, Thanksgiving Week, and the holidays – and usher in highly-anticipated events such as Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, it’ll be interesting to gauge Magic Kingdom’s crowd levels. Watch this space.

Have you noticed a change in crowds at Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort this year? Let us know in the comments!

View Comments (3)