Disney World has a ton of great rides and attractions for teenagers, and some might surprise you. Part of Disney’s success and popularity is that they work hard to truly have something that will appeal to everyone, including teenagers.
A teenager can surprise you by wanting to do some activities that you generally associate with younger children, but what might be appealing in that category is tough to anticipate.
These are the rides and attractions that are popular with the largest number of teenagers. There is a complete list sorted by location at the end of the article.
Best rides and attractions for teens at Disney World
Roller coasters and drop rides
Disney has lots of roller coaster and thrill ride options. At Magic Kingdom, you can ride all the mountains – Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain – as well as another roller coaster, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.
At Animal Kingdom, there is Expedition Everest. At Hollywood Studios, the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and the Tower of Terror are big hits.
Have a sports fan? ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex is a 220 acre, state-of-the-art sports complex on Disney property that is home to the Atlanta Braves for spring training.
It hosts numerous sporting events throughout the year and they have a searchable calendar as well as information on all upcoming events that you might be able to take in while you are there.
Water parks and water rides
Disney has two great water parks, Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. Teenagers who are not as impressed by the fantasy of Magic Kingdom may really enjoy going to the waterparks. In our experience, these are a hit with teens and tweens.
Typhoon Lagoon has North America’s largest wave pool, and it creates up to 6 foot swells. Disney posts the day’s wave schedule so that you can plan for the level of wave intensity that you want. Disney also offers both surfing lessons and a private hang ten session for up to 25 people when the park is not open.
Kali River Rapids is a thrilling and popular water ride for teens. It is found at Animal Kingdom.
If taking a trip to Africa and going on a safari isn’t in the plans or budget anytime soon, Kilimanjaro Safaris at Animal Kingdom is basically the next best thing. And it can be done within 18 minutes.
Disney has created an incredible animal reserve full of animals and plants native to Africa. The Harambe Wildlife Reserve is a 110-acre sanctuary dedicated to the protection of African animals. It is home to nine White Rhinos, which are now considered to be extinct in the wild due to poaching. A FastPass is recommended for this one.
Disney offers Horseback Trail Riding of varying lengths at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort. You can take a 45 minute trail ride through nature. Reservations in advance are recommended, and closed-toe shoes are required.
You can also see animals in their natural habitat on a private guided tour on the Wild Africa Trek.
Beyond Rides and Attractions
Disney has an incredible number of restaurants. Food from all over the world can be found across its theme parks, resorts, and Disney Springs.
Teenagers may enjoy trying something completely new, or going somewhere that has a cuisine or theme that they love. You won’t have any trouble finding either one.
Advanced Dining Reservations for Disney restaurants can be made 180 days in advance. For some restaurants, it is the only way to guarantee a table.
Immerse yourself in other cultures
Epcot’s World Showcase is a great way to experience other cultures. Each Cast Member (Disney employee) that works in a pavilion is from that country.
Striking up a conversation with a Cast Member can be a great way to learn new things about that country or an opportunity to converse in a foreign language that a teenager is studying.
Or, how about a henna tattoo in Morrocco? It is easy to venture safely outside one’s comfort zone when wandering through the World Showcase.
Best Disney World Rides and Attractions for Teens by Location
Here is a complete list of all the rides and attractions that are popular with teens, by location.
- Haunted Mansion
- Space Mountain
- Splash Mountain
- Big Thunder Mountain
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- Expedition Everest
- Kali River Rapids
- Kilimanjaro Safaris
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster
- Tower of Terror
- Midway Mania
- Star Wars fans – meet Chewbaca or Kylo Ren
- Test Track
- Mission: SPACE
- the World Showcase
- Humunga Kowabunga
- Storm Slides
- Gang Plank Falls
- Mayday Falls
- Surfing lessons
- Private surfing session
- Downhill Double Dipper
- Slush Gusher
- Summit Plummet
- Toboggan Racers
- Have a meal at one of the many restaurants
Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
- Horseback Riding
- Bike Rentals
ESPN Wide World of Sports
- Atlanta Braves Spring Training
- Wide variety of sporting events
If you enjoyed this or found it helpful, you may like this article on a mother’s experience taking her teenage daughter to Magic Kingdom and seeing Wishes from the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train ride. It gave me all the feels.