This article answers the question, “What are the four Disney parks in Orlando, Florida?” and adds context to make trip planning easier.

When you hear about Disney “parks,” this usually refers to the different theme parks within a Disney resort. On the East Coast, the Disney parks are in Orlando, Florida. (Walt Disney World is enormous, and it’s technically located in multiple Central Florida cities and towns.)

The complete Walt Disney World Resort is over 40 square miles and includes the four theme parks, plus water parks, hotels, Disney Springs, golf courses, a gas station, a McDonald’s, and lots more.

Let’s talk about the stars of the show: the four main theme parks in Walt Disney World.

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What Are the Four Disney Parks?

When people ask, “What are the four Disney parks?” they’re most likely referring to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, since Disneyland in California only has two parks.

The four Walt Disney World parks are:

🏰 Magic Kingdom

🪩 Epcot

🎬 Hollywood Studios

🌳 Animal Kingdom

Let’s talk about what each one offers.

Magic Kingdom

Dapper Dan vest Disney stickers in green and purple.
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Magic Kingdom is what a lot of people think about when they daydream about Disney World. It’s the most “Disney” of the four Disney parks, and it’s home to Main Street, U.S.A., inspired by small towns in America, like where Walt himself grew up. The park icon here is Cinderella Castle, of course.

Magic Kingdom has distinct lands, each with its own theme:

  • Main Street, U.S.A.
  • Adventureland
  • Frontierland
  • Liberty Square
  • Fantasyland
  • Tomorrowland

The motif of each land is pretty self-explanatory by its name. For example, Liberty Square is modeled after colonial America, while Adventureland is home to adventurous rides like Jungle Cruise and Pirates of the Caribbean.

✨ Read: The Ultimate Main Street Disney World Guide for Adults

What are the four Disney parks?The most recognizable is Magic Kingdom with Cinderella Castle as the park icon.

Some areas have more rides, shops or restaurants than other areas. For example, Main Street, U.S.A. doesn’t have any rides, but there are lots of shops on both sides of the street. Fantasyland has the most rides geared toward kids, while Liberty Square is the smallest and most adult-feeling of the lands.

✨ Read: Disney World Date Night — Liberty Square’s New England Charm

In one way or another, the lands all inter-connect (unless you’re blocked because of a parade), so you can roam from one land to the next instead of always having to return to the main hub in front of the castle.

The Imagineers Are World-Building Experts

Liberty Square Riverboat in Magic Kingdom.

The sightlines in Disney World, especially at Magic Kingdom, are expertly planned. When you’re in one area, you can’t see much into another, which creates a fully immersive experience.

🤯 There are even some buildings that you can see from multiple lands and that are purposely designed to suit a specific theme depending on your vantage point.

This was the biggest thing we missed when we went to Universal Studios — there’s such a mishmash of themes happening that you never feel like you can escape into one specific area, with the exception of the Harry Potter sections.

Epcot

Epcot ball sticker.
Get this waterproof Disney sticker here.

Epcot stands for “Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow,” and it’s made up of four distinct sections:

  • World Celebration
  • World Nature
  • World Discovery
  • World Showcase

🔎 For a lot of us, Epcot is divided in two: the main part and the World Showcase. Worlds Celebration, Nature and Discovery have recently been named, though the areas existed before, and they’re not yet part of Epcot’s identity.

Dreamer's Point Walt Disney statue in Epcot.

The Epcot “ball” houses the Spaceship Earth ride, and it also serves as the park icon, which you can see from far off, even when driving around the WDW Resort or staying at a nearby hotel.

Epcot proper is where you’ll find traditional Disney shops and the rides you’ve likely heard of, like Test Track, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, and The Land.

World Showcase

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🌎 The World Showcase circles a lovely lagoon and has replicas of major countries and famous cities. Represented are the following:

  • Mexico
  • Norway
  • China
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • America
  • Japan
  • Morocco
  • France
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada

There’s also a small African-themed outpost between China and Germany.

Most of the country-themed areas in World Showcase have a sit-down restaurant, quick-service options, shopping and a cultural experience, like museum-esque exhibits or films.

The aesthetic is what you come for, though, with replicas of famous sites and architecture that immerse you in the setting.

The Canada pavilion at the World Showcase in Epcot.

💡Pro Tip: Whenever you approach a new World Showcase country, head toward the back of it. There are usually things to see and do if you meander through the area instead of only taking in what you can see from the main walkway.

Hollywood Studios

Hollywood Studios is the movie- and Hollywood-themed Disney theme park, featuring both nostalgic and modern pop culture experiences.

Today, the Tower of Terror serves as the park icon, but the beloved Mickey ear tower is what us Disney adults remember from our childhood, when the park was still called MGM.

MGM Disney sticker feature the park icon ear tower.

When you enter Hollywood Studios, you walk down Hollywood Boulevard, which is like the park’s version of Main Street. At the end, you can branch off to the right and head down Sunset Boulevard or you can continue forward or to the left to check out the other areas of the park.

✨ Read: Date Night at Hollywood Studios — Making the Most of Hollywood Boulevard

Here’s how Hollywood Studios is divided up:

  • Hollywood Boulevard
  • Echo Lake
  • Grand Avenue
  • Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
  • Toy Story Land
  • Animation Courtyard
  • Sunset Boulevard

Aside from Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land, the different sections of Hollywood Studios are less distinct than, say, the Magic Kingdom lands.

🎬 Hollywood Boulevard, Sunset Boulevard and Echo Lake are all close to the entrance and are the most “old Hollywood” areas of the park.

🐸 Grand Avenue is essentially the small Muppets-themed section of the park and well worth a visit if you’re a Jim Henson fan.

Miss Piggy fountain in Hollywood Studios in Disney World.

🏰 There’s not much going on in Animation Courtyard, especially if you’re on a Disney for couples trip, but don’t miss the Walt Disney Presents museum.

🚀 Galaxy’s Edge is, of course, the Star Wars section of the park, and it’s entirely immersive. There’s even a different language used here, and the cast members stay completely in character wherever you go.

🪁 Toy Story Land has incredible theming, and it shrinks you down to the size of a toy by making everything around you huge. There’s nothing here that’s not on-theme. The benches, food and souvenir stands, building exteriors and interiors — every single thing is spot-on.

✨ Read: Disney’s Hollywood Studios Dining — The Best and the Worst

Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom is the nature-themed park at Disney World, and it’s supposedly not just the biggest Disney park but also the biggest theme park in the whole world. The park icon is the manmade Tree of Life, which has gorgeous and detailed animal carvings all over it.

The Imagineers put so much heart and thought into this park that it’s astounding. The joy of going here is appreciating your surroundings — the plant life and landscaping alone are so beautifully planned that you have to remind yourself it was created and not natural.

Animal Kingdom is divided into five areas:

  • Discovery Island
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Dinoland U.S.A.
  • Pandora — The World of Avatar

🌍 Africa and Asia are our favorite areas. The sights, sounds and scents transport you far, far away, and we always leave with our love of travel stoked.

🌳 Discovery Island is the section near the entrance/exit of the park. This is where the Tree of Life is, which houses the It’s Tough to Be a Bug show.

Insider Tip: The Tree of Life has handmade animal carvings all over it. There are walking paths that wind around and behind the tree where you can see lots of them closer up.

🦕 Dinoland U.S.A. is rumored to undergo major changes soon, but it’s still there for now. While this isn’t a fan-favorite section of Animal Kingdom, it’s worth a visit and appreciation. It’s designed like a roadside attraction, evident by the purposely kitschy design, complete with carnival games and faux cracks in the blacktop parking lot.

Fake cracks in the parking lot of Dinoland USA in Animal Kingdom.

🌺 Pandora is the Avatar-inspired land that’s more of a spiritual sister to the film than a carbon copy theme-wise. There are no blue characters walking around or cartoony surroundings. Instead, it’s kind of like you’re strolling through one of Pandora’s national parks.

Walt Disney World Parks vs. Disneyland ParksThe Mickey and Minnie statue in Disneyland.

Understanding the Disney parks on the West Coast is a little more confusing. The entire resort is called Disneyland Resort (comparable to the all-encompassing Walt Disney World Resort), and the two parks here are Disneyland and California Adventure.

To be extra-clear, “Disneyland” is both the name of the entire resort and one of the two theme parks.

You can think of the Disneyland park as the Magic Kingdom of the West Coast, though it’s also where you’ll find Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, which would probably have been a better fit in California Adventure.

California Adventure has a Hollywood Land section, which is sort of like Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World, plus Cars Land (dedicated to the movie), San Fransokyo Square (a Big Hero 6 San Francisco and Tokyo combo), the boardwalk-inspired Pixar Pier, and more.

Wrapping Up

Each of the four Disney World parks is absolutely worth a visit, and you’re bound to pick your favorite(s) after a trip or two.

We spend most of our time in Magic Kingdom, closely followed by Epcot. We spend the same amount of time in Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, and it’s common for us to skip one or the other on a trip.

🥰 If you’re planning to go to Disney World as a couple, you’ll want to know how to have a romantic vacation instead of a rushed and frantic one. Check out our Disney World date night guides to figure out what to do and what to skip.