Is There a ‘No-Fly Zone’ Over Walt Disney World?

The most magical place on Earth may also be one of the safest.

  • Published
Theme Park, Amusement Park, Nature
Image via Abacoaseo/Public Domain

Claim

Airplanes are restricted from flying over Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, under a “no-fly” restriction issued by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Origin

The Walt Disney World resort in Orlando, Florida, is one of just two U.S. theme parks awarded a “no-fly zone” designation. The other is Disneyland in Anaheim, California.

Those federal government-designated protections grant the theme parks the same protection as the White House and NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the permanent flight restrictions were issued on Oct. 27, 2014, for unnamed “security reasons”. They require that no aircraft come within 3,000 feet in altitude of the theme park for a radius of three miles. Any person who knowingly violates the rules may be subject to certain criminal penalties under a violation of national defense airspace and could face fines or imprisonment for up to one year. Pilots who do not adhere to the restriction may be intercepted and detained.

However, the no-fly zone does not apply to aircraft operated by the Department of Defense, law enforcement, or air ambulance flight operations. Flights operated by Walt Disney World itself are also allowable under an approved waiver.