Walt Disney World is home to seemingly countless attractions, including a number of roller coasters. These coasters range from kiddie coasters, to family coasters, to even some thrilling ones. Today we’re going to kick off our “Limitless Disney Month” by ranking every roller coaster at Walt Disney World from worst to best. Let’s kick it off with the absolute worst:
8. Primeval Whirl – Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Primeval Whirl is actually TWO side-by-side spinning Wild Mouse coasters, and there’s absolutely NOTHING good about them. They’re rough and jerky, the spinning is mostly nonexistent, and the coasters theming is practically nonexistent–a rare occurrence for a ride at Disney. There’s really not much else to say about this except avoid it at all costs…unless you really need the credit(s).
7. Barnstormer – Disney’s Magic Kingdom
Barnstormer is a small kiddie coaster located in Storybook Circus, a sub-land of Magic Kingdom’s Fantasyland. This ride is ranked so low on the list not because it’s bad (it’s actually pretty great for those who have never ridden a coaster before), but simply because there are other coasters at WDW that offer larger, more memorable experiences. Barnstormer is a great coaster for young enthusiasts-in-the-making, but it’s not exactly a must-do for older guests at the park.
6. Seven Dwarves Mine Train – Disney’s Magic Kingdom
Seven Dwarves is essentially a step up from Barnstormer in thrills and intensity, but a step down from Big Thunder Mountain. That kind of makes me feel like Seven Dwarves is obsolete and pointless. Sure, there are some enjoyable parts in this ride, such as the phenomenal interactive queue and the impressive dark ride ride section, but the actual coaster is pretty barebones. Even the whole “swinging cars” gimmick doesn’t really add to the experience, and often times it doesn’t even feel like the car is swaying at all. I still enjoy Seven Dwarves overall, but I do kind of wish they wouldv’e put something more unique in its place.
5. Rock n’ Roller Coaster – Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Rock n’ Roller Coaster is the only “extreme” roller coaster on WDW property. It’s also the only one to go upside down, which it does 3 times. What really sells this ride is the experience. It’s all themed to Aerosmith, so everything from the queue to the actual vehicles give off a rock n’ roll vibe. The trains even have on board audio that play Aerosmith, which is a very nice touch. Sadly, the ride gets knocked down a few pegs because of its roughness. There is a constant rattle throughout the duration of the ride, and the hard, plastic restraints don’t exactly help the situation. If Disney chose to one day retrack the entire coaster and/or replace the trains, then perhaps Rock n’ Roller Coaster could actually be the best coaster at WDW.
4. Big Thunder Mountain – Disney’s Magic Kingdom
Big Thunder Mountain is actually the first roller coaster I ever rode as a kid (I skipped Barnstormer). It might not be the most thrilling experience out there, but I still believe that there’s lots of fun to be had on the ride. The detailed theming is spectacular, and I always find something new that I’ve never seen before with each ride. Although it’s not super intense, there are still some parts that surprise me to this day (i.e. the head chopper elements). If there was one thing I’d like to change about BTM, it’s the pacing. The ride has 3 lift hills and they all kill the momentum of the ride. It feels like just as you’re about to get going, you stop. Yes, it does make the ride longer, but I still think the ride would have been better with only 1 or 2 lift hills.
3. Space Mountain – Disney’s Magic Kingdom
I don’t think WDW has a more iconic roller coaster than Space Mountain. Almost everyone knows it’s the “big white dome thing” in the Magic Kingdom, and I’m sure there are a lot of people that consider it the best coaster at WDW. It has a lot to offer, such as a space theme, an indoor “in the dark” ride experience, and a pretty thrilling layout with lots of sharp turns and dips. The only knock on Space Mountain is, well…it’s old. The ride hasn’t exactly aged well and the track is notoriously rough in some spots. Hopefully once the Tron coaster opens Disney will decide to close down Space Mountain and either retrack it or give it an entirely different layout…just as long as they don’t tear it down completly.
2. Slinky Dog Dash – Disney’s Hollywood Studios
This is probably an odd-ball pick, because I’m sure a lot of other people would choose to place Space Mountain, Big Thunder, and maybe even Rock n Roller Coaster ahead of this one. Hear me out though. After riding Slinky Dog 3 times back in 2018, I honestly thought it was the perfect family coaster. There’s so much to love about this ride. The launches are a combination of thrilling and accessible, the theming is pretty fantastic, the duration is decent (not too long, not too short), and it ACTUALLY HAS AIRTIME…if you sit in the back. The queue is also really fun as it features lots of oversized toys and instructions for the “Slinky coaster” toy that you’re about to ride on. Slinky is definitely a must-do ride at WDW, even if you have to wait an hour for it. You can check out my full review for the coaster here.
1. Expedition Everest – Disney’s Animal Kingdom
If Slinky Dog is the perfect family coaster, then Expedition Everest is the perfect thrill coaster. It’s not intense enough to be placed in the “extreme” category, but it is definitely far too thrilling to be placed in the “family” category. You might think this limits the amount of people who would be riding it, but I don’t think that’s the case at all. Even seasoned coaster enthusiasts will most likely be caught off guard by how phenomenal Everest is. It has top-tier theming in the queue and on ride (I mean, it’s inside of a man-made mountain for crying out loud!), an awesome layout with lots of fun turns and drops, and it even goes backwards. The coaster also has a single rider line which makes it perfect for ride marathons. I have so many amazing memories of running through the single rider line with my brother to get as many rides as possible (still can’t beat 11). Sure, I could be really critical and complain about the giant Yeti animatronic lacking any motion, but the “Disco Yeti” mode is such a fun meme at this point that I don’t even care much. If I could only ride one Walt Disney World roller coaster for the rest of my life, it would be Expedition Everest without question.
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