Best Disney World Thrill Rides: 13 Adrenaline-Inducing Experiences

Spinning tea cups, incandescent Everest expeditions, and stomach-turning drops aboard the Tower of Terror are just a few of the many theme park delights in store for Walt Disney World Guests.

Follow along as we break down all of the best thrill rides at Disney in Florida. 

Since the Disney park opened in October 1971, millions of guests each year flock to this oasis of enchantment and magic to experience the thrills, spills, and chills of over 50 rides. 

From rowdy roller coasters to immersive dark escapes to Disney world thrill rides, there are countless ways to achieve an adrenaline spike at the most magical place on earth. 

Whether you are seeking a railroad adventure with Mickey and Minnie or are ready to take the plunge on Space Mountain, there’s never been a better time to conquer the captivating rides of Walt Disney World. 

Disney World Rides FL for Kids

Disney magic may know no age limits, but that doesn’t mean every kid will be ready to tackle the scary rides at Walt Disney World such as Thunder Mountain or Space Mountain. Many Disney World rides implement height restrictions, and some may be too scary or thrilling for tinier tykes. 

Thankfully, many of the park’s original Disney World Rides are suitable for both kids and babies. For some low key thrills and memorable Disney moments, try:

Dumbo the Flying Elephant*

Babies and toddlers will clap in delight on one of the park’s classic rides as they control this big-eared elephant’s motion.

Close up of a family on the Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride on a sunny day at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USA“It’s a small world”*

Climb aboard for an international tour of whimsy and wonder as you sing along to everyone’s favorite ditty. 

Related Post: Insider’s Guide to Walt Disney World®

Jungle Cruise*

All ages and heights will embrace the exotic mystery of the Amazon when they set sail for adventure with a wise-cracking skipper.

Mad Tea Party*

Lean into the madness of a wonderland tea party, and control this ride’s speed with a swift turn of your teacup’s wheel.

Wide shot of the Mad Tea Party ride at Walt Disney World at dusk in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Wishing On A Star Travel, LLC via Facebook

Peter Pan’s Flight*

Cruise over London, soar past Never Land and battle it out with Captain Hook on this enchanting journey with the boy who wouldn’t grow up. 

Kilimanjaro Safaris

While not a classic thrill ride, the stunning savannah vistas and sprinting zebras, cheetahs, lions, and elephants of the Harambe Wildlife Reserve is not to be missed!

Wide shot of a safari jeep on a dirt rode with giraffes on one side along with trees and greenery on the Kilimanjaro Safaris at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USASlinky Dog Dash

A perfect roller coaster primer for kids 38″ and taller, this springy slinky shaped canine will have you zooming and zipping around Andy’s backyard. 

Fun Fact: Love for all things Disney easily extends halfway around the world! Many of the Disney World’s most treasured rides, such as Dumbo the Flying Elephant and It’s a Small World, can also be found at Disney Hong Kong!

*Denotes one of the park’s original rides

Best Thrill Rides at Disney World – Dark Rides

Did you know many of your most thrilling rides at Disney World are also dark rides as well? Dark rides are indoor amusement attractions in which guests travel via guided vehicles through unique lit scenes or dioramas that contain a mixture of animation, sound, music, and special effects.

Related Post: The Most Iconic Rides at Disney World

The most integral component of a dark ride is the commitment to the narrative. 

Disney dark rides rely on strong, central narratives to take passengers on fantastical journeys everywhere from the Wild West to the balmy beaches of the Caribbean:

Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway

A runaway train, plenty of slapstick humor, and zany twists await you on this historic ride.

Close up of Goofy pointing to the neon sign for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway at night in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Disney via Facebook

Haunted Mansion

Ghastly ghouls, creepy crypts, and phantom pranksters make this harrowing and haunted journey a quintessential dark ride.

Related Post: Ultimate Guide to Walt Disney World®: Coupons, Discounts, and Deals

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror

Stopovers in the 5th dimension and a terrifying drop into darkness make the Hollywood Tower Hotel’s elevator an unmissable attraction.

disney's hollywood studios the twilight zone tower of terror exteriorDinosaur

Travel back to the Jurassic era when you accept the special mission to rescue a giant 3.5 Iguanodon from meteoric extinction!

Related Post: Current Festivals and Events at Walt Disney World Resort

Pirates of the Caribbean Ride

Yo, ho, ho! Raise that Jolly Roger flag and embrace a Pirate’s life on this iconic swashbuckling voyage. 

Magic Kingdom Park – Top Thrill Rides at Disney World

Home to Cinderella’s Castle, Fantasyland, Space Mountain, and more, you could easily spend a whole day exploring every last attraction and ride in the Magic Kingdom. While we hate to play favorites, Magic Kingdom is the Disney World park with the most rides (25) and contains many heavy hitters that feature quite high on various Disney World rides ranked lists. 

True thrill-seekers will be in heaven as they get soaked on Splash Mountain cursed images or feel the rush of Western-inspired speeding train:

Splash Mountain

Who says water rides can’t pack a punch? So hold on tight for plenty of log flume fun and soaking wet drops as you speed along the Southern Bayou.

Wide shot of people in a cart going down Splash Mountain on a sunny day in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: WDW News Today via Facebook

Space Mountain

Prime yourself for intergalactic exhilaration as you shoot past stars and celestial satellites on this gasp-inducing and devilishly dark ride.

View of space mountain at night with green and blue light on and clouds in the sky at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Disney via Facebook

Big Thunder Mountain

Haunted gold mines, cursed caverns, and hairpin turns aboard rickety tracks make this gold mining mission a true Disney World big ride adventure.

Thrill Rides in Epcot

High octane thrills, futuristic visions, and boatloads of curiosity make thrill rides in Epcot a world where anything is possible. Travel far and wide as you soar above the Great Wall of China, or even attempt a mission to Mars. 

Fulfill your wildest fantasies as you witness the wonder of everything from 4D culinary adventures to rollicking car races:

Test Track

Strap in for a euphoric automotive escapade when you design your very own virtual concept car and then take it for a drive on the Test Track.

Close up of the blue and grey sign for the Epcot Test Track at Disney in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Chip and Company via Facebook

Mission Space

Dreaming of a distant universe? Then, enlist to be part of an elite four-part crew when you join the otherworldly Orange Mission or the more gentle Green Mission. 

Related Post: Visiting Theme Parks with Kids: 6 Essential Tips for Parents

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure

Calling all chefs! Lend a hand to everyone’s favorite rodent gourmand on this 4D culinary caper that is a replica of the original Disneyland Paris ride.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind

Starting summer 2022, Groot, Gamora, and the gang will need your help! So rock out with the stars above when you let loose on Disney’s first-ever reverse launch coaster featuring a 360-degree rotation. 

Wide shot mockup of the Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind ride at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Fairy Tale Concierge, Erika Brombacher-Travel Agent via Facebook

Most Fun Rides at Disney World – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Thrill Rides

Outrageous animal entertainment, lush jungles, and scorching savannahs where you might spot Simba! Disney’s Animal Kingdom is just brimming with exotic anticipation for those looking to get in touch with their wild side. Bug out over bioluminescence with the Na’vi, or race through the snowy Himalayas trying to avoid the treacherous Yeti. 

Immerse yourself in the pure power of mother nature when you encounter the Animal Kingdom’s fiercest rides:

Avatar Flight of Passage

Prove yourself as a Na’vi hunter when you embark on this death-defying aerial escape on top of a wild Banshee. 

Related Post: 14 of the Biggest, Baddest Thrill Rides Orlando Has to Offer

Expedition Everest

Equal parts thrill and dark ride, this rollercoaster careens through the rugged Himalayan mountains and features high speeds, daring dark plummets, and a legendary snow monster!

Lake in foreground and people riding Expedition Everest at Walt Disney World's Animal Kingdom - Orlando, Florida, USA
photo credit: Visit Orlando via Facebook

Kali River Rapids

Splish splash your way through the churning white water rapids of Asia on this dynamic water tour showcasing gushing waterfalls, drastic drops, and roaring currents. 

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Thrill Rides

The bright lights of Hollywood shine just a bit brighter at Disney. So illuminate your star-shaped dreams when you head to the place where ‘showbiz lives.’ Pump up the volume when you party it up with real American rock stars on the Rock’ n’ Roller Coaster, or enlist in the Jedi resistance when you fight the First Order.

There’s always something new to try in Hollywood  Studios, from galaxies far, far away to tons of movie-themed terror.

Related Post: Surviving Disney World in the Summer: The Ultimate Guide

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance

Out of this world, danger comes at you from all sides on this massive attraction featuring multiple ride systems. Join the Jedi and fight for what’s right when you take on the stormtroopers, Kylo Ren, and the First Order Star Destroyer.

Close up of a Storm Trooper with a gun plus an army of storm troopers behind him on Rise of the Resistance at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USAMillennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run

Ready to make the jump into hyperspace? Commandeer the galaxy’s most beloved smuggling ship on this heart-pumping mission that goes faster than 12 parsecs.

Rock’ n’ Roller Coaster

Walk this way for certified fresh tunes, tantalizing roller coaster loops, inversions, and corkscrews. This Aerosmith-themed ride is a real rollicking rock star certified delight. 

Giant Guitar and the Exterior to the The Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster at Disney World's Hollywood Studios - Orlando, Florida, USAPregnancy Safe* Rides at Disney World

Mouse-loving mamas-to-be need not despair. While many Disney World thrill rides will be off-limits to expectant mothers, every Disney park offers an impressive assortment of exciting attractions and rides that are pregnancy-safe.

You can speed into space on the Astro Orbiter soar high above the world at Epcot. Or work the railroads with Mickey and Minnie.

*Of course, every mother and everybody is different, so we highly encourage you to consult your physician and consult the signage posted at each attraction. 

Related Post: How to Meet Disney World Characters: Your Guide to the Magic

Sopping wet five-story drops, rapturous race track antics, and plenty of galaxy-themed subterfuge make any day at Walt Disney World Resort one to remember.

Meanwhile, master the flying techniques of the agile and aerial Na’vi. Prepare sumptuous Parisian cuisine with Remy, or commune with the undead at the historic Haunted Mansion.

Disney World Thrill Rides FAQs

Disney Imagineering has declared TRON as their fastest roller coaster to date. However, a certain ride at EPCOT begs to differ. Take a look at these speedsters at Walt Disney World: Test Track (65 mph) and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind (60 mph).

At Walt Disney World, it's only the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster that takes you on an exhilarating upside-down adventure. Brace yourself for an adrenaline-fueled rush as this high-speed attraction rockets you through a darkened Hollywood freeway in a supersonic 'super-stretch' limousine to the electrifying tunes of Aerosmith.  With neon road signs lighting your path and sudden twists and turns along the way, the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster promises an unforgettable, high-octane thrill ride that you'll want to repeat.

Hold On Tight for Disney World Thrill Rides

Do you crave the drama and daring dynamics of hair-raising roller coaster drops? Or are you more drawn to dark rides’ creative stories and narratives?

Whether you prefer high-stakes theme park thrills or would rather kick back with character-driven and kid-friendly amusement, there are endless ways to enjoy the best rides at Disney World

Need more than just the best rides of Disney World? Don’t forget to check out our 14 of the Biggest, Baddest Thrill Rides Orlando Has to Offer article for even more thrilling fun!

Tell Us, What’s Your Favorite Disney World Thrill Rides?

Which is your favorite Disney World in Florida ride? Share with us in the comments below!

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Written by Isis Maya Nissman

A New York native, Isis-Maya spent most of her professional life working in TV production until a vacation whisked her away to Central...

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