Disney World’s Pirates of the Caribbean is one of the most historic rides in the Magic Kingdom.  It’s dark, it’s creepy, there’s a fantastic theme song, and it creates fantastic memories. Because there is no height requirement, it’s often one of the first memories your young ones will have of Disney World.

This article will share some of the rich history of this attraction, outline what to expect on this ride, and give you a few tips on how to fit it into your Magic Kingdom touring plan so that you can stay out of long lines.

Pirates of the Caribbean – The History

Pirates of the Caribbean was the last attraction that Walt Disney worked on before he died.  Unfortunately for Walt, he never got to actually see it open, as he died just three months before it opened in Disneyland. 

Just two years after the Magic Kingdom opened in Orlando, Pirates of the Caribbean was completed and became an instant classic.

During the ride, you’ll possibly fall in love with the main song, Yo Ho (A pirate’s life for me). Of course there’s a good chance you’ll get sick of it too!  This song was actually designed and written for the ride, and is a Disney original.  As you probably know, this ride actually served as a foundation for Disney’s popular movie series, Pirates of the Caribbean.


Pirates of the Caribbean – The Ride

The ride loads extremely fast, which keeps wait times relatively low. The fast loading times are due to the large boats that can seat 23-24 people at a time. Did you know there are as many as 50 boats on the attraction at a time? 

This is a very dark ride, especially at the beginning.  There are a number of skeletons, and the music at the beginning can be a bit creepy for young children.  Very soon there is a small drop where you are “transported” to the Pirate world.  From that moment on, the ride is a slow moving journey through the world of pirates. There are pirates engaging in all sorts of behavior, and the theme song, of course, is played over and over again.

You will notice that characters from Disney’s movie have also been incorporated into the ride, most notably of which is Jack Sparrow himself!

Pirates of the Caribbean Tips

Although the ride is fast-moving, it’s also very popular. Wait times during peak periods can be high. The good news is that you can usually get a same-day fastpass for Pirates. This means that once you’ve used up your 3 scheduled fastpasses, you can often get a 4th fastpass.

Pirates is in Adventureland, on the opposite side of the park as Tomorrowland and many of the attractions in Fantasyland. So it’s important to schedule your fastpasses intelligently.

I recommend trying to use your 3rd fastpass on Splash or Thunder Mountain. Then when you are able to book a 4th, try to use it for Pirates. If it works out, you’ll save yourself a lot of time.

Personally, I never make Splash a priority. You don’t need to rush there early, and you don’t need to save it for late. If you aren’t able to get a fastpass (or you don’t want to spend a fastpass on Pirates), just ride it when you see that the lines are low. For more details on which fastpasses to get in the Magic Kingdom, see our article Magic Kingdom Fastpass Strategy!


Ride Information

Park - Magic Kingdom
Park Section - Adventureland
Height Requirement
- None
Ride Type - Dark Ride
FP+ - Fastpass Eligible


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