9 Best Roller Coasters at Disney World, Ranked by a Passholder

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Walt Disney World is known for its family-friendly theme park experiences.

In fact, most people are surprised to learn how few attractions have height requirements. But fortunately, Disney World also has quite a few thrill rides and attractions that will give you the stomach-dropping thrills you’re looking for.

It’s true that compared to a roller-coaster-heavy theme park like Six Flags, Disney has fewer coasters. But at least in my opinion, the theming more than makes up for it. 


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Which park at Disney World has the most roller coasters? 

Magic Kingdom has five roller coasters. Disney’s Hollywood Studios comes in second with two coasters. Finally, EPCOT and Disney’s Animal Kingdom each have one. 

Read Also: Does EPCOT Have Roller Coaster Rides? 4 Most Thrilling Rides Ranked

Does Disney have good roller coasters? 

Yes! I think Disney has some great, true roller coasters in addition to its thrill rides. Here’s my ranking of all the Disney World roller coasters. 

Ride Queue at Guardians of the Galaxy
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is considered one of the best, if not the best, rides at EPCOT (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

1. Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind

Location: EPCOT (World Discovery)

Height requirement: 42 inches

This incredible indoor coaster utilizes a track system just like a traditional roller coaster. However, the vehicles can spin 360 degrees, making reverse launches possible.

The first time I rode, I thought, “This is what Space Mountain should be like!”

While similar to the iconic Magic Kingdom ride, the Guardians coaster gives you the illusion of whizzing through space surrounded by a multitude of stars. Unlike the herky-jerky Space Mountain, Cosmic Rewind feels smooth and breezy.

Ask a cast member to seat you in the front row of the last car for the ultimate reverse launch experience. Importantly, there is currently no standby line available for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind. At the time of this writing, guests must join a Virtual Queue or purchase an Individual Lightning Lane to experience this ride.

Read Also: Guardians of the Galaxy Ride at EPCOT: My Motion-Sick Prone Review

rock n roller coaster at Hollywood Studios
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster at Hollywood Studios is the only coaster with inversions at Disney World (photo by Morgan Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

2. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith 

Location: Disney’s Hollywood Studios (Sunset Boulevard)

Height requirement: 48 inches

This indoor coaster remains the only ride at Walt Disney World that takes you upside down.

The inversions include both loops and a corkscrew portion of the track. Plus, you’ll listen to several of Aerosmith’s classic hits while riding.

You’ll find it near the Tower of Terror at the end of Sunset Boulevard in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. 

Tron Cars on Track Magic Kingdom
The new TRON Lightcycle ride is a great coatser, but the ride is short (photo by Morgan Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

3. TRON Lightcycle 

Location: Magic Kingdom (Tomorrowland)

Height requirement: 48 inches

TRON is the newest and long-anticipated addition to Tomorrowland at Magic Kingdom.

My husband would probably argue that it deserves a higher spot in the rankings. However, I put it at number three because the ride itself feels so short!

As with Cosmic Rewind, you’ll need to join the Virtual Queue to experience this attraction.

Slinky Dog Dash Coaster
The little ones can generally ride Slinky Dog Dash, which has a 38-inch height requirement (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

4. Slinky Dog Dash 

Location: Disney’s Hollywood Studios (Toy Story Land)

Height requirement: 38 inches

Speaking of my husband, we visited Hollywood Studios on the opening day of Toy Story Land back in 2018 on a trip celebrating a milestone birthday for me.

Liberated from our children thanks to my in-laws, we were the happiest people to ever wait nearly four hours in the blazing sun of Andy’s backyard for a family coaster.

But also, as a geriatric millennial who grew up watching “Toy Story” and all of its sequels, I love this ride in and of itself. Even better, the 38-inch height requirement allows even my two-year-old twins to ride with the rest of the family. 

Thunder Mountain Ride at Vehicles Disney World
Try to ride the Big Thunder Mountain at night for a unique experience (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

5. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad 

Location: Magic Kingdom (Frontierland)

Height requirement: 40 inches

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is perhaps one of the most underrated coasters at Disney World. It’s longer than most coasters, and it’s outside. This makes it possible to get a totally different experience when you ride at night – perhaps even during the fireworks if you time it just right!

The bench seats are also great for families with an odd number of children. Instead of one odd-man-out, it’s possible for three children or two adults and one small child to ride together.

Additionally, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad has been studied as an unconventional but surprisingly effective treatment for kidney stones. It really is the wildest ride in the wilderness! 

Animal Kingdom's Exhibition Everest
Watch for Yeti while riding Expedition Everest (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

6. Expedition Everest: Legend of the Forbidden Mountain

Location: Disney’s Animal Kingdom (Asia)

Height requirement: 44 inches

On this traditional coaster, you can watch out for the elusive Yeti as you explore the Himalayas.

Although this is Animal Kingdom’s only true roller coaster, the park is home to another thrill ride that’s worth mentioning. Notably, you’ll find Avatar: Flight of Passage in the Pandora section of the park. It’s more of a simulator-style ride, so it didn’t make this list. 

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Magic Kingdom
The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is a great addition to the Magic Kingdom for coaster fans (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

7. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train 

Location: Magic Kingdom (Fantasyland)

Height requirement: 38 inches

Like Slinky Dog Dash, this family coaster is accessible to preschoolers. This made it a phenomenal addition to Fantasyland with the 2012 expansion. Also, it was my oldest son’s first roller coaster.

I will never forget the joy of riding it with him just before he turned three.

It was also one of Disney’s first immersive queues. If you use the standby line, you’ll find several stations along the way with interactive elements.

Pro tip: In the room with the spinning barrels, recruit fellow guests to get all the barrels spinning simultaneously. This triggers a special effect in which Snow White is projected onto the wall. 

Space Mountain Cars Interior
Space Mountain was Magic Kingdom’s first coaster, opening in 1975 (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

8. Space Mountain 

Location: Magic Kingdom (Tomorrowland)

Height requirement: 44 inches

Space Mountain was Magic Kingdom’s first roller coaster.

It first opened in 1975 and was brought in to attract families with older children and teenagers. The darkness on Space Mountain makes it feel like you’re moving much faster than the ride’s top speed of 28 mph. 

The Barnstormer Magic Kingdom
The Barnstormer is a very short ride, but it’s fun for the kids (photo by James Overholt/HeyOrlando.com)

9. The Barnstormer 

Location: Magic Kingdom (Storybook Circus)

Height requirement: 35 inches

Starring the Great Goofini, this kiddie coaster is short but sweet. Seriously, this ride lasts 53 seconds from start to finish. About 30 of those seconds are spent ascending to the top of the track.

Thankfully, the wait remains fairly short on an average park day. It’s a great first coaster since most two-year-olds will be tall enough to ride. 

Is Cosmic Rewind more intense than Space Mountain? 

This depends on what you mean by “intense”. Space Mountain has a lot of bumps and jerks, and the darkness can feel disorienting. You can’t see what’s coming, but if you can tolerate an older-style classic roller coaster, you’ll be in good shape.

On the other hand, Cosmic Rewind offers a smoother ride experience. However, the vehicle does spin. If you’re prone to motion sickness with simulators or backward motion, you might find this attraction more intense. 

What is more intense, TRON or Guardians of the Galaxy? 

TRON is probably more intense than Guardians of the Galaxy. Personally, I like Guardians of the Galaxy better than TRON. The ride is longer, and I’m more invested in the Guardians storyline than in the TRON storyline and characters.

That being said, my husband liked TRON better than Guardians. He was more familiar with the movies and grew up playing the arcade game.

Plus, he loved the unique motorcycle-inspired ride vehicle and the intense launch sequence at the beginning of the ride. 

However, if we’re including less-traditional coasters in the ranking, my overall personal favorite thrill ride is Rise of the Resistance in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

It’s an immersive ride featuring multiple vehicles and sets, cast members deep in character, and twists and turns that will leave guests baffled. I love this ride, but it’s not necessarily a traditional roller coaster. 

Do you have a favorite roller coaster at Disney World? If so, let us know in the comments.

Photo of author


Kirby Russell

Kirby Russell is a freelance contributor for TheSmokies.com LLC – the parent company of TheSmokies.com and HeyOrlando.com.

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