A great way to see Disney World is via one of the fantastic tours that are offered throughout the parks. All of the parks, with the exception of Disney’s Hollywood Studios offers year round tours, most of which go backstage, so you get a great view of the workings of Disney World. Disney World also offers tours of the resorts, the Animal Kingdom Lodge tour in particular is fantastic.
#10: Wild by Design – Located at the Animal Kingdom theme park, the Wild be Design tour gives you a close up look of the animals, buildings and artifacts used to build the Animal Kingdom theme park. The downfall is that there are no backstage areas seen on this tour, but you do get a fantastic view of Harambe Village and surrounding areas.
#9: Backstage Safari – Also located at the Animal Kingdom theme park, this tour gives you an entire backstage experience of the animal care area of Kilimanjaro Safaris. While you really don’t get to see many animals, you do get to see where they live and eat when the parks are closed, the animal hospital and a chance to meet many of the caretakers.
#8: Epcot Seas Aqua Tour/Dolphins in Depth – These two Epcot tours are sister tours. The Aqua Tour gives you a backstage look at the Living Seas pavilion, including time in the Living Seas aquarium. The Dolphins in Depth tour is similar, with a backstage look at the Living Seas pavilion, as well as hands on experience with the Dolphins.
#7: Behind the Seeds – Located in The Land pavilion in Epcot, the Behind the Seeds tour takes you on a walking tour of the greenhouses of the Land. If you are interested in gardening at all, this tour is fantastic, giving you a close up look of the unique was of growing food, the pests they use to fight other pests and a look at the fish farm, full of alligators and fish to be used at Walt Disney World restaurants.
#6: Family Magic Tour – Located in the Magic Kingdom, this tour is fun for kids of all ages. The tour takes you through Main Street, Liberty Tree Square, Tomorrowland and Fantasyland. The tour is presented as a treasure hunt, which helps keep the little kids interested for the two hours. While you don’t get to go backstage, you do get to pick up interesting facts about the Magic Kingdom.
#5: Dive Quest – Located in the Living Seas Pavilion at Epcot, Dive Quest is a unique tour for certified divers. Divers get a 30 minute dive in the Living Seas Pavilion, with full interaction with all the sharks, fish, stingrays and turtles in the aquarium. The best thing about the tour is those who cannot dive can watch the divers through the aquarium windows.
#4: The Magic Behind our Steam Trains – If you, or anyone in your family loves trains (and who doesn’t?), the Magic Behind our Steam Trains gives you an up close look at the Steam Trains that operate in the Magic Kingdom. You start early, before the park opens, and get you watch as they prepare the trains for their daily work, and also get a look at the roundhouse, along with a view of the history of the trains, and all the trains used at Disney parks.
#3: Around the World at Epcot – A unique tour of two parts, the first part learning how to ride a Segway, the second half a tour on your own Segway through the World Showcase. Fortunately, the World Showcase is closed to the public while you are ridding, so you don’t have to worry about avoiding park guests. A great way to see the World Showcase before it opens to the public.
#2: Keys to the Kingdom Tour – Located in the Magic Kingdom, the Keys to the Kingdom Tour gives you backstage look at the Magic Kingdom, including a trip into the Utilidors that run under the Magic Kingdom with views of the wardrobe area. You also get to visit the Magic Kingdom production center, where all the parade floats are stored when not in use. Includes lunch at the Columbia Harbor House. Kids are not allowed, as you often see characters backstage that are not in full costume.
#1: Backstage Magic – The Granddaddy of all theme park tours, this 7 hour tour gives you a backstage look at Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the Magic Kingdom, including lunch at Mama Melrose’s. You get to see just about everything, from the Disney Florist to Storage areas and views of attractions from the inside give you an unique view of the Disney theme parks.