Another section of the new hub opened at the Magic Kingdom yesterday, Plaza Garden East. The Plaza Garden West Fastpass+ area opened up about a week ago, and we have photos and video of that here as well. They look very similar, extremely spacious and with plenty of room for guests to walk around and enjoy fireworks with Fastpass+ reservations. The new walkways will also alleviate a lot of the congestion that has plagued the Magic Kingdom, we were once stuck for about a half hour with little movement in front of the Crystal Palace. Further down in the article, we take a walk through the Rose Garden, which will also undergo a transformation.
I have found it interesting how many questions we’ve received about the hub in the previous months, more than anything else we have covered.
We had spent yesterday morning at Epcot to photograph the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival preparations, and then headed to the Magic Kingdom. We haven’t had a chance to visit the Magic Kingdom since the first section of the hub opened. When we arrived, there were plants blocking the Plaza Garden East entrances – and they didn’t stay there long.
I am very happy that all the small statues – including Minnie Mouse and Dumbo with Timothy Mouse – are back and scattered about the East and West Plaza Gardens, in view of fountains for beautiful photograph opportunities.
There is a lot of walkway space, but also quite a bit of landscaping.
Cast Members roll away the plants that blocked the entrances.
We didn’t expect to see this new hub section open to guests while we were there, but we were welcomed as some of the first guests in. We have that welcome and the tour of Plaza Garden East in our video below the photo.
Here is our Plaza Garden East video tour (keep reading for many more Plaza Garden East; Plaza Gardens West, and Rose Garden photos).
What I really like is that guests can even see some of the Cinderella Castle Dream Along with Mickey show from here. It isn’t close, but viewable. Now I just would like to see a better daytime show!
Tables near the Plaza Restaurant have a view again.
The grass isn’t real, but it looks great – and it would be better for the environment as well.
Guests can easily find the Disney Fastpass+ Fireworks Viewing signs. We were told that when guests have Fastpass+ viewing, they can choose either East or West.
During the day, the area is open for guests. At night, it becomes Fastpass+ only during the fireworks.
The walkways are very wide.
We were asked on one of our videos why it was so empty. I wouldn’t expect it to be busy here except on high attendance days or for fireworks. Most guests are busy further into the park.
This area behind Main Street will also continue to be open during busy exits, we were told it will be called Market Street (by someone working on the hub project). The bathrooms here have also reopened since our last Magic Kingdom visit, with a new planter.
Here is another look at a walkway.
This is the view we had for nearly a year as construction was taking place. I am happy they kept the sea serpent as well! It has been there as long as I can remember.
This is the view from the tables near the Plaza Restaurant.
The Plaza Garden West section opened about a week ago. We look forward to seeing it at night! Chip and Dale were the first characters we found.
Plaza Garden West signage.
This is the view into Plaza Garden West.
We both thought that we’d like fireworks in East better, though this isn’t a bad view.
Move It! Shake It! Dance and Play It! was passing by.
We’ve seen photos of guests sitting on the ground, so Jeff took a moment to do the same. I think it is a nice place to spend a little time, maybe with a book.
This area is fine for watching the daytime Castle show too if distance isn’t a problem.
This is the view looking in toward the Crystal Palace.
Donald Duck statue.
I like the fountains, the design reminds me of one that is at Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter.
Fireworks at the Castle show.
Here is our Plaza Garden West video!
These booths are coming down, I believe to be replaced by turrets. They always looked like bus stops to me.
Walt and Mickey are still in a box as construction continues here.
The Rose Garden is still going to be redesigned. I kept hoping that plans would change, but we were told they haven’t. There could still be roses, but the area will be changed. I will miss what is probably my favorite area of the Magic Kingdom, which I found out this year is also a great location for photographing perimeter fireworks.
Here is a walk-through of the Rose Garden from yesterday. The rose plants were cut back a while ago, I think that happens each winter. A few rose buds were popping up.
We posted a couple of weeks ago about this new fence in front of the Main Street Train Station, to keep guests out of the floral Mickey.
Perla and Suzy were out in front of the Magic Kingdom, and even balanced autograph books on their noses.
There wasn’t a long line, so we waited to meet them.
It was a nice day at the Magic Kingdom!
What do you think of the new hub expansion?