Tom Sawyer Island: An Unexplored Attraction at the Magic Kingdom - PassPorter.com
PassPorter.com
Award-winning travel guidebooks
Home Florida - Walt Disney World Caribbean - Disney Cruise Line California - Disneyland Resort Anywhere and Everywhere! Travelers Store Message Boards PassPorter's Club Help!
  About Us  |  Customs Office   |   Register Your Book   |   Book Updates   |  Newsletter  |  Articles  |  Photos  |   Follow Us on
       LINKS
       ARTICLES
WDW Planning Articles

WDW Traveling Articles

WDW Lodging Articles

WDW Touring Articles

WDW Dining Articles

WDW Making Magic Articles

WDW General Travel Articles

View all PassPorter articles
PassPorter's
Article Tools
Print Article
Download PDF
Read Comments on This Article

Tom Sawyer Island: An Unexplored Attraction at the Magic Kingdom

Walt Disney World photo
by Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 11-03-2010
  

Cool Tip: Click here to get a FREE PDF version of this article, fully formatted to print and put into your PassPorter Deluxe Binder!


Filed in Articles > Walt Disney World > touring  

There are many, many attractions at Walt Disney World that both first-timers and regular visitors will want to head straight for in each park. The mountains in the Magic Kingdom - Splash, Big Thunder, and Space -- are huge draws, as is Soarin', and Test Track in Epcot, while at the Studios the crowds head to Toy Story Midway Mania, Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, and the Tower of Terror. In Animal Kingdom, it's Expedition Everest and Kilimanjaro Safaris which draw everyone. However, as we all know, every park has so much more to offer than just what are often termed the E-ticket attractions.


Perhaps one of the most easy to miss at the Magic Kingdom is Tom Sawyer Island, located in Frontierland. For starters, to actually visit the island, you have to take a raft over there, probably something that many people pass by without even realising it. That helps to keep crowds down a nice, manageable level, even on the busiest days.

The motorized raft journey over is a lot of fun, and doesn't take nearly as long as you think it will, and then it's up to you where you head for. There are very few places that you can say that about in Walt Disney World. All too often, you enter the line, and then you board your attraction. Here, it's up to you to make your own explorations and make the most of the island. You can spend as little time here or as long as you like, but there's certainly plenty to see for all age groups.

Children will love being able to just run around and have fun, while adults will appreciate the peace and quiet, where you can just sit and watch the world go by. There are even rocking chairs to enjoy by the dock, where the rafts drop you off.



Magic Kingdom Tom Sawyer Island photo
Magic Kingdom Tom Sawyer Island

Tom Sawyer Island at the Magic Kingdom - photo by Dopey007

Inspired by the works of the famous author Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer Island is packed full of fun attractions. We really enjoyed exploring the caves on the island, complete with some dark passages, and some fun and unusual lighting, although for younger members of the family, this may prove to be too frightening, as in some places, it is very dark. Having said that, you can also have a lot of fun, by scaring older members of the family. It's very easy to get ahead of people and then hide in wait for them, jumping out at the last moment.

Perhaps the one part that's guaranteed to make most adults feel sick is the area with the rope bridge, and the barrel bridge. These really can be made to bounce up and down underneath you, and it can be a disconcerting experience. I have to be honest, I was very glad to get off those things, as we had some very enthusiastic teenagers following us, who were enjoying the bouncing sensation far too much for my liking!

The family favorite here will be Fort Langhorn, where there’s so much to explore, with air rifles, and cannons for younger cowboys to try out. We particularly enjoyed seeing the various displays of how life would have been in those days. Somehow, it feels much authentic here than in the rest of Frontierland, perhaps because it’s usually quieter over here.

One thing that’s worth knowing before you embark on a journey over here is that you do need to be able to walk around a fair bit. It’s not a wheelchair friendly place, and although there are places to stop and sit around the island, part of the aim is exploring, and that does mean a fair bit of walking.

Tip: Search for Brushes on Tom Sawyer Island
Did you know that paintbrushes are sometimes hidden on Tom Sawyer Island at the Magic Kingdom? On your next visit, be on the lookout for one. If you find one, follow the directions written on it to return it to its proper place. You may be rewarded! To see what happened when one family discovered paintbrushes, visit http://www.passporterboards.com/forums/touring-world-parks-walt-disney-world/232174-our-tom-sawyers-island-paint-brush-adventure.html - tip contributed by Jennifer

Save This Tip


Tom Sawyer Island is a great place to head to, if the weather’s not cooperating. On our last visit there, we were enduring some fairly heavy rain, but we found that the island has a lot of shelter, so we were still able to explore without getting drowned.

It really is a bit of an oddity, as there are no shops here, which is unusual in any area of any Disney park, and there’s only one place to stop to eat, Aunt Polly’s Dockside Inn, which serves up snacks, but only on a seasonal basis, so don’t bank on it always being open, particularly at quieter times of the year.

You’ll find that Tom Sawyer Island often opens later than the rest of the park, and it will close earlier, with the usual closing time being dusk. That’s fully understandable, as of course, to fit in with the theming, there’s no real lighting over here, so after dark, it would be an accident waiting to happen. You do need to keep an eye on the time while you’re here, as it’s very easy to spend longer than you had originally anticipated, as there’s more to see and do here than you first imagine.

It’s a great place to head to for all ages, and as a couple without kids, we still found plenty to enjoy here. If you’ve never visited Tom Sawyer Island, or if it’s been some time since you were last there, it’s well worth boarding a raft, and heading over there.


Magic Kingdom - rafts to Tom Sawyer Island photo
Magic Kingdom - rafts to Tom Sawyer Island

The rafts that take you to and from Tom Sawyer Island. - photo by chezp




About the Author:
Cheryl and husband Mark live in England and love to travel, particularly to Disney, and they have made numerous visits to destinations across America and Europe. They recently completed their tour of every Disney theme park around the world, which culminated in their visit to Japan, including the Tokyo Disney Resort. Click here to view more of Cheryl's articles!

Related Links:
Enjoying the Japan Pavilion at Epcot - A World Showcase Favorite last updated 2/24/2011
The Parades of the Magic Kingdom - A Plethora of Processions last updated 01/22/2009
Epcot's World Showcase - Pavilions vs. The "Real" World last updated 01/29/2009
Recent Changes to Disneyland - Part 1 last updated 02/12/2009
The Seas With Nemo And Friends - In Love With The Living Seas last updated 4/23/2009




Reader Comments:


View all comments in forum thread

So what do you think? Click here to share your comments, feedback, and experiences on this article and topic!

(Note: You must be a member of our PassPorter Message Board Community to leave comments. Join today for free!)




Updated 11-03-2010 - Article #537 



Read additional articles from PassPorter.com

Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter, PassPorter News, published for more than 58,000 opt-in subscribers worldwide. As an added bonus for subscribing, you will receive a 20% discount coupon for the PassPorter Store -- no catch!

E-mail Address:

First Name:

E-mail Format:
-Text/Don't Know  

-HTML

 
 

We respect your privacy and never sell or rent our subscriber list. Subscribing will not result in more spam! We guarantee it.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Copyright 1999-2014
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.

       SEARCH
       LEARN MORE
Learn More With Our Award-Winning Guidebooks


 

RSS General PassPorter Community - Boards & Forums on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel - 13,14,15,16,17,18
PassPorter Community - Boards & Forums on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disn...
Discussion forums about Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel provided by PassPorter Travel Press, the ultimate Disney travel guide and book series.


When do you suggest to apply Disney giftcards to room charge balance?
by Her Dotness
21 Sep 2014 at 2:58pm
We've never used Disney giftcards as trip savings before, so I know all you experienced giftcard savers can advise me expertly. Here are some...
(click title above to view replies)

How long till Chase adds trip payoff to your Disney Visa Reward Dollars total?
by Her Dotness
21 Sep 2014 at 1:56pm
I know you guys will empathize that we're going nuts here wondering how long it will take them to get our Disney Reward Dollars tally updated. I'm...
(click title above to view replies)

[Need recommendations for transportation from] Sanford to Disney
by aswaffer
14 Sep 2014 at 5:10pm
Whats the best & cheapest way to do this as it will just be my daughter and I flying. Do we rent a car, if so thru whom is the cheapest and easiest...
(click title above to view replies)




Total Visits: 10017


PassPorter ~ 1998-2014 ~ 16 Years of Making Dreams Come True!
Publishers of bestselling travel guidebooks and proud recipients of 13 national book awards
About PassPorter
About Us
Site Map
Press
Privacy Policy
Images & Artwork
Guidebooks
About
Previews
Buy
Reviews
Updates
Features
News & Updates
Articles
Podcasts
Photos
Message Boards
Newsletter
Concierge Desk
Desktop
Trips
Books & E-Books
Tips
Settings
Customs Office
Register Books
Book Updates
Contests
Checklists
Help & Info
Finding Answers to Questions
Help Desk
Using Your PassPorter Forum
Store Customer Service
E-Mail Us
Follow Us
PassPorter.com Front Page (Updated Daily!)
PassPorter Newsletter (weekly and free)
Latest Posts
Facebook
Pinterest
YouTube Channel
Questions? Check our Site Map and visit our Help Desk to learn how to contact us online, by e-mail, and by phone.
Please feel free to link to this page so that other vacationers can find it.