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Like any theme park enthusiast, roller coasters are a big draw when visiting Walt Disney World. That’s why we came up with a list of the best roller coasters at Disney World and ranked them from best to worst.
Walt Disney World has some of the most iconic coasters in theme park history. Everyone knows Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain for example, both which revolutionized the industry. In more modern times, coasters like Expedition Everest have taken their legacy to a whole other level.
In this post, not only will we rank every roller coaster at Walt Disney World, we have all the info you need about them including ride length, height requirements, coaster speeds, inversions, the tallest drops and what new coasters are coming to the parks.
Many people always ask us if Disney World is good for thrill-seekers? While there are many parks around the country that are more focused on thrill rides, Disney World does have some pretty excellent ones too, including its roller coasters.
Whether you are into big thrills or slow and relaxing, there is a roller coaster for you at Disney World.
Just remember, Disney parks are not like Six Flags which try to build the biggest and the fastest rides. Rather, Disney Parks are all about storytelling and immersion in the total experience. The theming and overall ride experience are more important at Disney World than just pure thrills.
Any list of the best roller coasters is purely subjective and depends on personal opinions. Take our rankings with a grain of salt and if you disagree and have them in a different order, let us know in the comments section.
Of course there are many more attractions to enjoy in the parks so check out our rankings of the best rides in Disney World which covers all attractions and not just roller coasters.
Roller Coasters at Walt Disney World Overview
Before we get into the specific rankings, let’s go over some general info about roller coasters at Walt Disney World.
How Many Roller Coasters are there at Walt Disney World?
Currently, there are 7 roller coasters at Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida. This includes only traditional roller coasters and not other attractions that ride on a track.
We are only counting roller coasters currently active. No, Primeval Whirl does not count since it is permanently closed and neither do the new coasters Disney is currently building.
Which Disney Park has the Most Coasters?
Disney’s Magic Kingdom has the most roller coasters of all 4 theme parks at Walt Disney World having 4 of them total.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios has 2 roller coasters and Disney’s Animal Kingdom has 1 coaster. EPCOT is the only park in Walt Disney World that currently does not have a roller coaster, though that will change when Cosmic Rewind opens.
Which Park has the Best Coasters?
Having 4 coasters total, we think the Magic Kingdom has the best coasters overall at Walt Disney World. In our rankings they hold two of the top three spots, although they also have the worst coaster too. In sheer numbers though it’s hard to beat the Magic Kingdom.
What is the Fastest Roller Coaster in Walt Disney World?
The fastest roller coaster at Walt Disney World is the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster as it tops out at 57 mph or 91 kmh. Top speed on this coaster is reached right at the beginning when you are launched and reach top speed in only 2 seconds.
The slowest roller coaster in Disney World is The Barnstormer with a top speed of only 25 mph.
All of the roller coasters at Disney World have height restrictions for smaller guests. Make sure to read the Disney World Height Requirements so you know which rides your kids can go on and which ones they have to skip.
Scariest Roller Coaster in Disney World?
Our answer to this question is between two attractions, but we think the scariest coaster overall at Disney World is the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. Not only is it the fastest coaster, it also has 3 inversions and the lighting is very low making it hard to see where you are going.
Expedition Everest was our other choice for scary rides as it goes backwards at one point in the ride and it has the biggest drop of all the coasters.
Which Roller Coasters Go Upside Down At Disney World?
The only roller coaster at Walt Disney World that goes upside down is the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith. It has a total of 3 inversions throughout the ride.
The first inversion is right at the beginning when the train is launch out of the starting gate. The other two inversions are part of a corkscrew maneuver later on in the ride and make up what Vekoma calls the “rollover loop.”
All three inversions occur in the dark and you don’t realize you are going upside down until it is over.
What Is The Longest Roller Coaster In Disney World?
This question has two answers and depends if you are talking about ride length in minutes or track length.
Ride Length Minutes – The longest roller coaster in Disney World in minutes is Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
Ride times for the other coasters are all pretty close with Space Mountain, Expedition Everest and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train all somewhere between 2 minutes 30 seconds and 3 minutes.
Track Length – Expedition Everest has the longest track of any roller coaster at Disney World and is 4,424 feet long (1,348m).
What Is The Highest Roller Coaster In Disney World?
Expedition Everest is both the tallest roller coaster and the roller coaster with the highest drop at Walt Disney World. The attraction tops out at 199.5 ft tall (not the track but the structure). The biggest drop on the ride is 80 ft tall.
The shortest roller coaster is The Barnstormer and it stands only 30 feet tall.
Is it Possible to Ride all 7 Coasters in One Day?
If you are a roller coaster enthusiast and only have a short amount of time at Walt Disney World, it is possible to ride all 7 of them in one day. It’s actually not very difficult as you only need to visit 3 of the 4 parks to make it happen (Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom).
If you want to do it and mostly only ride the roller coasters, we suggest going to Hollywood Studios first and riding Slinky Dog Dash and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster first-thing in the morning.
Once you finish up at Hollywood Studios, head to the Animal Kingdom and do Expedition Everest. Lastly, head to the Magic Kingdom to wrap up the remaining 4. We like to finish at the Magic Kingdom because it has the most rides and you can stay for the fireworks in the evening.
Which Disney World Roller Coasters are Good for Kids?
While Walt Disney World has dozens of rides for small children, not all of the roller coasters are good for kids. This is subjective and depends on how old your children are and how much they like thrill rides.
Here is a list of the Height Requirements for all 7 roller coasters in Walt Disney World in order from lowest to highest:
- The Barnstormer – 35 inches (89 centimeters)
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – 38 inches (97 centimeters)
- Slinky Dog Dash – 38 inches (97 centimeters)
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – 40 inches (102 centimeters)
- Space Mountain – 44 inches (113 centimeters)
- Expedition Everest – 44 inches (113 centimeters)
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster – 48 inches (122 centimeters)
The Barnstormer is the best coaster for little kids and is often the first coaster they try because of the low thrill level and a height requirement of only 35 inches. Even most 3 and 4 year olds can handle that.
As you work your way down the list, we suggest you ride the coaster first as a parent before deciding whether or not your child can handle it or not. Work them up the list one by one. If they don’t make it this year, there is always the next trip so no worries.
Our Ranking Factors
When ranking the Disney World Roller coasters we based our evaluations on a many factors and not only on the “Thrill Level” alone. We rated them based on thrills, theming, ride length, storytelling, and the overall fun factor. We then put them in order from best to worst (#1 the best and #7 the worst).
We want to make it clear that our number 1 and number 7 picks are in classes by themselves and we find it hard to argue that anyone could choose a different roller coaster in those spots. The middle 5 coasters however are all very close in our opinion and could be ranked in any order you prefer.
Now let’s see the best roller coasters at Disney World…
Best Rides at Walt Disney World Ranked
Below we are going to break down our rankings and tell you why we put each roller coaster in the position we did. Before we do that, here is our list of the best roller coasters in Disney World ranked from best to worst:
- Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain
- Space Mountain
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
- Slinky Dog Dash
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- The Barnstormer
We have our reasons for these rankings which we will share with you now. Let’s start with the worst coasters and work our way to number 1.
7. The Barnstormer (Magic Kingdom)
- Thrill Level: 2/10
- Top Speed: 25 mph
- Ride Length: 1 minute 3 seconds
There is no doubt in our mind that The Barnstormer is the worst roller coaster in Disney World. It’s a kid’s coaster and offers very few thrills for adults. It’s the slowest roller coaster at only 25 mph, the lowest coaster at 30 feet tall and the shortest time-wise at just over 1 minute.
If your child has not been on any of the bigger roller coasters yet in the park and you want to gage how daring they are, The Barnstormer is a good way for them to get their toes wet. If things go well, you can take them to the next step up.
Actual roller coaster enthusiasts will be bored out of their mind on The Barnstormer and unless you have small children that want to go on it, we say to skip it altogether.
6. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (Magic Kingdom)
- Thrill Level: 5/10
- Top Speed: 35 mph
- Ride Length: 2 minutes 30 seconds
While still a very good ride, we rank Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in the #6 position because of all the other quality coasters after it. This is one of the newest roller coasters at Walt Disney World, located in Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom. It’s actually part roller coaster and part dark ride with a lot of storytelling to it.
As far as thrills go, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is pretty calm. There aren’t any big drops or inversions and even most kids can handle it. The only thing that might make you a bit nauseous are the cars that swing side to side around the corners giving it a cool effect. We like it but some may not.
This ride does have an old-school Disney feel to it with the Snow White theme and it also has one of the coolest show scenes of all the coasters at Disney World when you go into the diamond mine with the animatronic dwarfs. We wish it was a little longer because the storytelling aspect of the ride is top-notch.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train usually has the longest wait times at the Magic Kingdom, so make sure you either get a FastPass+ reservation for it or get to the park in time for rope drop and make it your first ride of the day.
5. Slinky Dog Dash (Hollywood Studios)
- Thrill Level: 6/10
- Top Speed: 40 mph
- Ride Length: 2 minutes
Currently, the newest roller coaster at Disney World is Slinky Dog Dash in Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios. This is an outdoor steel coaster that Andy built out of his Dash and Dodge Mega Coaster Kit.
As a coaster it doesn’t have a high thrill factor, but it is more intense than what it seems like from he ground. There are no inversions but it hits a top speed of 40 mph and we love the long stretch of track where you bounce up and down and get some great air time!
There is some debate between this and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, both in intensity and overall fun. We think Slinky Dog Dash is the better coaster because it is faster, taller and we love the blast-off midway through the ride. We give Seven Dwarfs the nod in storytelling and character integration into the ride, though they are both must-do attractions.
Slink Dog Dash has the longest wait times in Hollywood Studios so get a FastPass+ reservations or make it the first attraction of the day at park opening.
4. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith (Hollywood Studios)
- Thrill Level: 9/10
- Top Speed: 57 mph
- Ride Length: 1 minute 22 seconds
If you like thrill rides, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster is for you. It is the fastest and most intense roller coaster at Disney World. In fact, it is the only ride that goes upside down, in fact it has 3 inversions (one loop and a double corkscrew).
The ride starts out with a 0-60 mph blast off in less than 3 seconds that sets the tone for the entire ride. The story behind the ride is Aerosmith has given you backstage passes to a concert downtown and you have to take a stretch limo to get there only traffic gets in the way and some quick maneuvers are required.
To us, fewer things are more fun than rocking out to Aerosmith blasting in your headrest as you zip around tight corners and fly upside-down through the loops. We also enjoy the fact that it’s in the dark, not as dark as Space Mountain, but dark nonetheless. Our only complaint is the ride is short at only 1 minute and 20 seconds, so it’s over way too quickly.
If you don’t like thrill rides then you definitely don’t want to ride the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, but if you are a fan you will love it. Also, children must be 48 inches or taller and kids under 7 must ride with an adult.
3. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (Magic Kingdom)
- Thrill Level: 6/10
- Top Speed: 36 mph
- Ride Length: 3 minutes 30 seconds
Affectionately called “The wildest ride in the wilderness,” Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is a Frontierland staple and a roller coaster that’s been wowing guests for generations. Yes, many of the coasters on this list are bigger and faster than Big Thunder, but very few match its characteristic storytelling aspect and overall mystique.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is a runaway mine train set in an abandoned mining village in the old wild west. The theming is “classic Disney” and the level of detail in the stonework, artifacts and other elements is second to none.
Even though it’s not an incredibly thrilling roller coaster in the traditional sense of the word, it creates dramatic suspense and build-up that make it seem like you are going faster and higher than you really are. It can be a bumpy ride so hold on tight.
Even though it can use some technical upgrades and some newer special effects, it remains one of the best rides Walt Disney Imagineering has ever built and a must-do roller coaster at Walt Disney World.
2. Space Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
- Thrill Level: 8/10
- Top Speed: 28 mph
- Ride Length: 2 minutes 30 seconds
We’re getting to the top of the best roller coasters at Disney World, and given its importance place in the history of thrill rides, it seems only right to put Space Mountain #2. In fact, Space Mountain is synonymous with the word thrill ride and maintains a larger-than-life profile on the Magic Kingdom skyline.
The majority of Space Mountain runs in complete darkness, with only a few seconds of light. Even though it’s not very tall or fast, since the whole ride is in the dark, it makes you appear to be going much faster than you really are. The special effects include astroids, shooting stars and great sound effects, all adding to the experience.
The fact that it has remained relevant and a perennial guest favorite speaks volumes about its lasting power after being almost 50 years old! Space Mountain gets bonus points for its futuristic ride queue, creating nice anticipation for the ride itself as well as the unique post-show queue.
Yes it’s bumpy and it will rattle your brain around like a pair of maracas, but it still can’t take away from the other factors making Space Mountain undoubtedly one of the best rides at Walt Disney World.
1. Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain (Animal Kingdom)
- Thrill Level: 9/10
- Top Speed: 50 mph
- Ride Length: 2 minutes 50 seconds
Was there ever any doubt about #1? Though we love all the other roller coasters on this list, Expedition Everest is unquestionably the best roller coaster at Walt Disney World. This ride has everything you want from a thrill ride, and more.
The ride starts in its highly-detailed ride queue as you find yourself on a trip through the Himalayan mountains on the “Anandapur Rail Service.” You can learn a ton about the Himalayan culture, and of course the infamous Yeti.
The roller coaster itself is unmatched at a Disney World park. It’s a steel coaster that runs incredibly smooth with little bumpiness or jostling. There are no inversions on Everest but there is a long backwards drop that leads into a 250° turn at high speed. Expedition Everest tops out at 50 mph and its biggest drop is 80 feet tall and done to perfection.
The whole ride builds anticipation for the mythical Yeti creature who is after your train. We wish Disney would fix the impressive, yet broken Yeti animatronic figure, but even that can’t derail Everest from landing at #1 on our list.
In a place known for “Mountain roller coasters”, Expedition Everest stands above the rest and is the best coaster Disney World has to offer. Don’t leave without going on it!
New Roller Coasters Coming to Disney World
The Disney Parks are never completed and Walt Disney Imagineering is always working hard to bring us new attractions with the latest innovations in technology, this includes roller coasters.
Currently, there are 2 new roller coasters coming to Walt Disney World, both of which will quickly become fan favorites. We are equally excited for these new coasters so let’s see what they will be like.
TRON Lightcycle Power Run – Magic Kingdom
This futuristic coaster straps guests onto a lightcycle bike and launches them out onto “The Grid,” with amazing lighting and special effects reminiscent of the TRON films. When it opens it will become one of the most popular rides at the Magic Kingdom and a much-need addition to a park with aging attractions. It also is great for thrill seekers reaching speeds of 60 mph.
Disney was hoping to have this open in time for the start of the Disney World 50th Anniversary but construction delays have made that impossible now.
Estimated Opening Date: Spring/Summer 2022
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind – EPCOT
This ride is based on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy franchise and will be one of the longest indoor coasters in the world when it opens. It also sounds great for thrill-seekers as it has a backwards launch to start the ride.
Estimated Opening Date: Early 2022
For a more detailed look at more Disney attractions in the next few years, read our post on the Best New Rides Coming to Disney World.
Tips for Riding Roller Coasters at Walt Disney World
Choose the Best Seat – With most roller coasters, we like to sit in the front row. This usually gives you the best view of your surroundings and lets you really take in the ambiance of the ride more than the middle or the back. When you get to the loading area just ask a Cast Member to sit in the front row and they will hold you to the side until the next available seat opens up.
Don’t Get Sick – Many people like roller coasters, but their stomachs don’t and they can get nauseous when riding. To combat this, choose a seat in the middle of the vehicle, usually the most stable part of the vehicle. Also, keep good posture sitting up tall in your seat and looking straight ahead with your head up. Don’t close your eyes but keep them on a fixed point in front of you.
Put Your Valuables Away – Roller coasters are fast with sharp corners and sometimes loops. Store important items like sunglasses or hats in the pouch on the back of the seat in front of you and don’t hold anything in your hands like a phone as it could fall out and lose it.
Be Adventurous – Roller coasters can be scary at times, but it’s worth it to be adventurous and try new ones. You don’t want to be stuck on The Barnstormer for the rest of your life, so try some of the bigger coasters too. Work your way up in order of intensity until you find the level you prefer most.
Enjoy It – Most importantly, have fun! Take a deep breath, let out a big scream if you must, and enjoy the ride of a lifetime!
Make sure to check the Disney World Refurbishment Calendar to see which rides are going to be closed during your visit.
How to Avoid Long Lines for Rides at Disney World?
Everyone loves riding roller coasters, but no one like waiting in line for one. After all, the less time you have to spend in line, the more rides you can be doing and saving time is crucial.
Here are a few tips that will help you avoid spending too much time in line during your visit:
Use FastPass+ – The Disney World FastPass+ system allows you to make a reservation for the Disney attractions so you don’t have to wait in the normal stand-by line. Reserve your favorite rides and come back when it’s your turn to ride. Disney World guests get a minimum of 3 FastPasses per day they can use to reserve the attractions with the longest wait times and skip the lines.
Do Rope Drop in the Morning – No matter what type of rides you like (roller coasters or not), the most important part of avoiding long wait times is to go to the parks early in the morning. It’s not idea waking up early on vacation, but it will save tons of time in the long-run.
Go When the Crowds are Low – Of course, no matter what you do, if you go to Disney World during the busiest time of the year, you will have long lines. That’s why we recommend going during the less busy times if possible. Read our Disney World Crowd Calendar to find out the dates that are least crowded each year.
Right now there are 7 roller coasters at the 4 Walt Disney World theme parks combined. 2 new roller coasters are currently being built.
Disney’s Magic Kingdom has the best roller coasters at Disney World and also the most at 4 coasters.
The Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith is the fastest roller coaster at Walt Disney World.
That wraps up our rankings of the best roller coasters at Walt Disney World. We had a lot of fun making this list, and any way you look at it, each coaster has its place and is fun for a certain type of guest.
We encourage you to share your favorite Disney World Roller coasters in the comments section below to see how your list compares!
For more info on the Disney World attractions, check out the following guides:
- Best Rides at Disney World Ranked
- Best Rides at the Magic Kingdom Guide
- Best Rides at EPCOT Guide
- Best Rides at Hollywood Studios Guide
- Best Rides at the Animal Kingdom Guide
- Best Rides for Toddlers and Kids at Disney World
If you are thinking about going to Walt Disney World in the coming future, make sure to read our Disney World Planning Guide. There you will find all the info and tips you need to plan your trip.
I want to know what you think about our list of the best roller coasters in Disney World…
- What is your number one roller coaster?
- What is your ranking of the Best Disney World Roller Coasters?
Let us know in the comments section below!
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