Magic KingdomThe Parks

8 Facts and Secrets about the Festival of Fantasy Parade at Disney’s Magic Kingdom

The Festival of Fantasy parade at the Magic Kingdom is one of the most impressive parades that you will ever see. People begin lining up very early to get good spots to view the parade.  This is one you definitely don’t want to miss, so make sure it is on your agenda.  Whether you have seen it or not, here are facts and secrets that you may not have realized:


8 – It takes lots of cast members to run the parade.

It is over 100, actually! It seems like a LOT of cast members, but there are all important. They work hard to make this an incredibly magical moment for all guests.


7 – How many floats are there?

Editor’s Note: At this time, the parade does not include the Brave float. We hope it will return!

There are actually eight total floats (normally nine) that make up the parade. These include: the Princesses, Tangled, The Little Mermaid, Peter Pan, Sleeping Beauty, Pinocchio, Fantasia, and Mickey’s Airship. Across these seven floats and the walking cast, more than a dozen classic Disney movie favorites are represented.

6 – A large number of characters are represented.

There is a very likely chance that you will see many of your absolute favorite characters while you enjoy this fantastic parade. You will actually get to see around forty beloved characters, either live or in sculptural form.


5 – The Princess Garden float is HUGE!

The Princess Garden Float is an impressive 50+ feet long. On the float, you will likely also see big favorites like Belle, Cinderella, Elsa, and Princess Tiana. Not only that but the way the ride is constructed, you get to see each of them with great views because they rotate so that you get views of all of them! So no worries about which side of the street to stand on! You will get to see them all!

4 – Mickey’s Airship float is the tallest float in the parade.

This float towers over the crowd, with the top of the float reaching 32 feet high. It’s awe-inspiring in person and so detailed. It is designed to look like a huge hot air balloon with characters from Fantasia sculpted around the base, and Mickey and Minnie ride in the basket under the balloon and greet all of the smiling guests along the streets. This is the parade finale, and nothing is better than getting to wave at Mickey!


3 – The float contains costume pieces and items that were 3D printed.

This blows my mind. They actually digitally drew and sculpted various pieces and costume components. These digital files were then used to become and tangible reality through 3D printing. One example of one thing that was 3D printed are the headpieces that the clamshell dancers with the Little Mermaid float wear. Impressive, right? It will give you a larger appreciation for the details when watching the parade!

2 – What about that dragon?

The Maleficent dragon float is one of the most impressive and most talked about floats. It is 52 feet long and 26 feet tall, and super impressive. Disney actually employed a Tony Award-winning designer, Michael Curry, to help with the design that was used to develop this steampunk rendition of Maleficent as a dragon. Even better, the dragon is, in fact, a fire-breathing dragon, for a perfect effect to bring the magic to life right before your eyes.

1 – The costumes are as elaborate to make as they appear.

Disney spared no expense or detail in creating each and every one of the costumes that are worn in the parade by the characters and by the various dancers. They even had custom fabrics designed and created exclusively for these costumes, so don’t expect to find many of these prints in the stores. For most of the dancers, it took as much as 30 yards of fabric just to make one costume. Can you imagine the time it would take to cut and make all the pieces, let alone the regular care for these costumes? If you look at Minnie’s dress and hat, the 95 dots on her costume were cut out, individually decorated and bedazzled, and then each one was then sewn on individually. What work and detail!!!

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Hi! I’m Kristin, and I am a wife and mother of 2 young boys (ages 5 and 2). I first fell in love with Disney when my mom took me when I was a child. After that I proceeded to go to WDW for my senior trip with my friends, and I completed a year in the Disney College Program (working in merchandise at Mickey’s of Hollywood at Disney’s Hollywood Studios). I shared my love of Disney with my now husband and sucked him in. We vacationed at Walt Disney World 2-3 times per year. We decided that what maked more sense was just moving to Orlando so that we could live the Disney life and be here for all of our favorite events and seasons every year. That is exactly what we did! Now we are at the parks a couple times a week and go for most events and major holidays. We can’t get enough and get to experience Disney in a whole different way.
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