Some Walt Disney World rides have height restrictions, requiring kids be a certain number of inches tall (usually 38 to 44″) in order to experience. Height requirements with measuring sticks are posted outside of attractions with a height requirement, and individuals who do not meet the height requirement will not be allowed to enter the line. Walt Disney World does not have age requirements for any attractions.
Height requirements are an objective measurement to ensure that a person is physically large enough to experience a ride safely, but they do not ensure that children (or adults!) will not be scared by the attraction experience. Obviously, this is a subjective determination that each parent must make for their own child. For example, Haunted Mansion (the “haunted house”) at Magic Kingdom has no height requirement, but it causes many children to cry. (Likewise, when I was a kid, the dinosaurs in Universe of Energy scared me to the point of hiding on the floor of the ride vehicle.) We’ll have some tips about avoiding this common pitfall at the bottom of the post.
Currently, here is a list of Walt Disney World attractions with height requirements at Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom…
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – 40″
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – 38″
- Space Mountain – 44″
- Splash Mountain – 40″
- Stitch’s Great Escape (Seasonal)
- The Barnstormer – 35″
- Tomorrowland Speedway – 32″
- Mission: Space (Green) – 44″
- Mission: Space (Orange) – 44″
- Soarin’ – 40″
- Test Track – 40″
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
- Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith – 48″
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue – 40″
- Twilight Zone Tower of Terror – 40″
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- DINOSAUR – 40″
- Expedition Everest – 44″
- Flight of Passage – 44″
- Kali River Rapids – 38″
- Primeval Whirl – 48″
Note: In addition to height requirements, other Walt Disney World rides issue health warnings. These warnings will be prominently posted in the attraction queue/line prior to boarding the ride experience. You may also consult a nearby Walt Disney World Cast Member to inquire about health warnings.
Okay, back to kids being scared on attractions that don’t have height restrictions at Walt Disney World. If you’re a first-timer, this is actually a lot more common than you might think. And, unfortunately, avoiding this is not as simple as us listing off additional attractions with a ‘scare-factor.’ This is because each child is unique, and some attractions that scare some children are a complete non-issue to others. The saying “only you know your child” is cliche, but it’s also true.
There are thus two solutions to this problem. The first step for each is to consult our Walt Disney World Ride Guides and identify potential problem attractions. Then, ride the attraction in question yourself before experiencing it with your kid, and make the determination after riding. (You can take advantage of the “Rider Switch” program to facilitate this.)
Alternatively, find ride-through videos on YouTube (they are abundant) and watch them with your child. While watching, you should be able to gauge their reaction. The downside of this is that it’s a “spoiler” for the actual ride, but it familiarizes them with the experience and leads to a more predictable response.
Neither option is fool-proof, as kids can be unpredictable. Much of their reaction depends upon mood (are they underslept on vacation?) and perhaps a bit of pure luck. In any case, hopefully this list of attraction height requirements at Walt Disney World proved helpful to your planning!
Other questions about planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help.
For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!
Do you agree or disagree with our advice about height requirements at Walt Disney World? Any tips of your own regarding kids getting scared on Walt Disney World attractions? Recommendations for preventing this? Share any questions, tips, or additional thoughts you have in the comments!