Climb aboard “The Happiest Cruise That Ever Sailed!”
“it’s a small world” is a journey of colors, cultures and unity, full of nostalgia and charm.
Though you may find yourself singing it’s famous theme for days to come, we’ll argue that a trip to Walt Disney World is not complete without riding this iconic attraction.
Keep reading for our complete guide to “it’s a small world“.
Before we get too far into it, make sure you check out our guide on the Best Rides at Magic Kingdom for information on every attraction and show at Magic Kingdom.
Description: “it’s a small world” is a slow-moving boat ride that takes you on a journey through all 7 continents represented by fantastical and colorful scenes, along with Audio-Animatronics who sing “it’s a small world” in many languages.
“it’s a small world” is located in Fantasyland across from Peter Pan’s Flight.
How to ride “it’s a small world”
‘it’s a small world” has a Standby Line and a Lightning Lane. There is no Single Rider Line.
Like most attractions, standby lines typically are the lowest first thing in the morning and at the end of the day. The middle of the day will see the longest lines.
While the boats do hold a lot of guests, wait times can grow here due to the family-friendliness of the ride.
Do I need to use Genie+ at “it’s a small world”?
Genie+ is available at “it’s a small world” but it is not an early priority since Genie+ availability for the ride typically lasts all day.
Be sure to check out our touring strategies for Magic Kingdom for more Genie+ advice.
Rider Switch/Child Swap
As there is no height requirement for “it’s a small world”, this attraction does not offer Rider Switch.
Rider Switch is Disney’s system that allows guests with small children to take turns riding bigger rides, while another person/people wait with the little one.
What to Expect When You Ride
While the queue is open-air, it is mostly covered with the exception of the busy season when lines extend beyond the entrance.
You’ll wind your way back and forth down ramps until you finally come upon the boat boarding area where Cast Members will direct you to a numbered row.
Once your boat makes a complete stop at the loading dock, you can walk into the boat and have a seat.
The boats at “it’s a small world” feature six rows that can fit up to 3 to 5 people per row.
For those in ECVs, you must transfer to a standard wheelchair to ride.
There are some boats that can accommodate wheelchairs. If you’re in an ECV or power wheelchair, you must transfer to a manual wheelchair to board this ride.
For boats without wheelchair accommodations, you must transfer from your wheelchair or ECV to the boat in order to ride.
ECVs and wheelchairs remain in the same area where you park them prior to boarding.
Guests using wheelchairs or ECVs may also park them with the strollers and walk the queue (there are no steps).
That said, wheelchairs and ECVs are not permitted in the line. For those using mobility devices, “it’s a small world” has its own accessible queue, which is on the far right under the pink tent closes to Pinocchio’s Village Haus.
As “it’s a small world” is a gentle boat ride, the chance of motion sickness is unlikely. If you want to know about rides that can cause motion sickness, read our guide.
On the Ride
Cruise along the Seven Seaways Waterway on a journey through all 7 continents as you sing along to what may be the most famous anthem for world peace, “it’s a small world.”
You’ll float by adorable Audio-Animatronic dolls that represent nearly every corner of the globe as they join in one song sung in many languages.
To name a few, the following are represented on the ride:
- The British Isles
- Western & Eastern Europe
- The Middle East
- South America
- The South Pacific Islands
Full of color, gorgeous scenery, and charm, this classic Walt Disney World attraction will have you convinced that it really is a small world after all.
The attraction ends with a room full of different ways to say goodbye. Thanks to MagicBands and MagicBand+ technology, you just must be lucky enough to even see your name pop up on one of the screens bidding you farewell.
Is “it’s a small world” kid-friendly?
Absolutely! This is definitely a ride that the whole family can enjoy together.
Strollers are not allowed in the “it’s a small world” queue. You can park your stroller at the designated stroller parking area near the entrance to the queue.
“it’s a small world” was created for the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair in support of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
Personally overseen by Walt Disney, the attraction was a huge hit and after 2 seasons there, it debuted at Disneyland on May 28, 1966.
In 1971, “it’s a small world” was one of the opening day attractions at Magic Kingdom in Disney World. It was so popular that the attraction has been replicated at many Disney theme parks around the world.
It’s theme of the same name, “it’s a small world,” was written by the Academy Award-winning brothers, Richard and Robert Sherman.
Walt Disney asked them to create a song that could be sung by Audio-Animatronic figures in multiple languages and they surely delivered.
Other Fun Details
- Every 15 minutes, a clock is revealed on the main tower. The doors also open on the side showcasing toy soldiers.
- Mary Blair was the mastermind behind the child-like art style reminiscent of colored paper collages that “it’s a small world” has become so famous for. You can also see her work over, a 90-foot-tall mural, at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.
- Under the direction of designer Alice Davis, over 300 costumes for the dolls of “it’s a small world” were created using authentic materials for each region’s traditional attire.
- As soon as you set sail, look up and wave to diners at Pinocchio’s Village Haus, who can watch the ride as they eat.
- In the Africa scene, there’s a Hidden Mickey in the purple flowers on a vine on the elephant’s left side.
Other Attractions in Fantasyland
- Cinderella Castle
- “it’s a small world”
- Mad Tea Party
- Mickey’s PhilharMagic
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
- Peter Pan’s Flight
- Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
- Ariel’s Grotto
- Enchanted Tales With Belle
- Princess Fairytale Hall
- Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid
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