I’ve always liked the Jungle Cruise at Walt Disney World. It’s definitely a “must do” on each trip. I have no idea how many times I’ve been on it, but I laugh each time like it’s my first time hearing the jokes! The skippers make this attraction what it is!
This year, we were fortunate enough to be at Walt Disney World on November 7, the day they “opened” the “Jingle Cruise.” Honestly, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I just thought there would be a few lights, Christmas ornaments and garland draped on the animatronics to help get it in “the season.” BOY, was I wrong! This attraction got a complete make over for the holidays.
The transformation started with the sign (pictured above) and the queue. There were decorations, packages and Christmas signs throughout the queue area.
Even the names of the boats got a make over!
The skippers were wearing Santa hats in a “safari” theme- khaki hats with animal fur trim and ball. Their jokes were just as good, but all had a holiday twist! I LOVED IT!
Once on the boat, we were able to see all the holiday additions to the animatronics along the river(s). My favorites were Ginger and Smiley’s stockings and Trader Samta!
This was one of my favorite attractions this trip. Christmas is my favorite holiday and having this twist added to one of my favorite attractions was wonderful!
If you are traveling to Walt Disney World during the holidays (early November- early January) you MUST visit The Jingle Cruise! It WON’T disappoint!
If you are a mom of boys, like I am, you are probably not very interested in visiting the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at Walt Disney World. But did you know you had another option? You can take your entire family (if they are over the age of 3) to The Pirates League at the Magic Kingdom inside the gift shop at the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction.
While this can be a pricey activity for the entire family, it may be doable for one or two kids without totally breaking the bank! For $29.95 plus tax, you can choose from 2 options: “The First Mate” or “Empress”. The entire makeover will take about 30-60 minutes.
For your money you will receive your own Pirate Name from the Captain’s Log, the makeover, a portrait session and you’ll participate in a Pirate Parade (weather permitting) in Adventureland. All packages include:
- Choice of facial effect (5 choices)
- Reversible Bandana
- Earring & Eye Patch
- Sword & Sheath
- Temporary Tatoo
- Pirate Coin Necklace
- Personalized Pirate Oath
- Removable Teeth*
*The Empress package does not come with the teeth, but it does come with vibrant makeup, nail polish and a face gem! (A perfect option for your not so Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique type girls!)
The Jungle Cruise in Adventureland in Magic Kingdom Park opened in 1971. This attraction is 10 minutes long. During this outdoor cruise, you will encounter exotic rivers from 4 different continents, lots of animatronic animals and several corny jokes by your skipper! The jokes told by the skipper can make or break you experience… trust me, I’ve had great ones and not so good ones.
The queue for this attraction is quite lengthy. Just when you think you are approaching the boat loading area, you turn a corner to start a whole new group of queues. However, if you wait in line take notice of the architectural details, read the signs and posters, look for hidden Mickeys and listen to the cast members. They will be sharing some corny jokes that will resemble some you will hear from the skippers. Once you do board, take note of the boat you are riding. These boats are made to look like the boat in the movie, The African Queen. On your cruise you will encounter the following rivers: the Amazon in South America; the Congo in Africa; the Nile in Egypt; and the Mekong river in Cambodia. My favorite part of this attraction is the backside of water! 🙂
- Riders in wheelchairs or ECVs may remain in them at this attraction but will need to wait for the”Bomokandi Bertha” boat that is equipped to hold wheelchairs. Melissa from Disney on Wheels has a great post about this accessible attraction.
- I enjoy this attraction more at night. The skippers seem funnier (or maybe I’m just punchier!) and the lines seem shorter.
- This is a Fastpass+ attraction. If you are determined to ride, consider planning for a Fastpass+.
- There is a dark tunnel in this attraction. Small children may be frightened. Consider a small flashlight or glow stick to help calm fears of the dark.
- During the 2013 Holiday season, the Jungle Cruise became the Jingle Cruise.
On May 23, 2001, The Magic Carpets of Aladdin opened in Adventureland. This ride is very similar to Dumbo in Fantasyland. It’s a hub and spoke spinner ride that has 16 carpets that each seat 4 people in each carpet- 2 in the front, 2 in the back. The difference in this spinner ride from others is that the front seat controls the up and down movement of the carpet, but the lever for the back seat controls the carpet’s pitch- tilting forwards and backwards. Guests will be flying their carpets for 1 1/2- 2 minutes and while you are flying, watch out- the camels nearby spit!
When you are waiting in line, look for the jewels in the sidewalk- many create hidden Mickeys. While you are flying your carpets, you will be listening to music from the movie Aladdin. In keeping with the Arabic theme, you will also be flying around a giant genie bottle with characters from the movie on it. The two camels around the attraction (that spit) were originally built for the Aladdin’s Royal Caravan parade at Hollywood Studios that ran from 1992-1995. Following the parade, they were used at the Soundstage Restaurant before moving to the Magic Carpets of Aladdin attraction.
- This attraction can carry about 1,000 guests an hour and it has a slow moving line. However, the lines tend to stay fairly short and the wait times rarely approach 30 minutes.
- Only ride this if the line is short or you have extra time. Lines tend to be shorter later in the day.
- Kids will love this attraction, but I suggest using your time to ride Dumbo- the same ride, different theme, but Dumbo is a classic! Plus Dumbo has the new interactive queue.
- Riders of ECVs must transfer to wheelchairs to get through the queue. Users of wheelchairs will need to transfer to the ride units. When boarding, the carpets are near the ground so no climbing is necessary.
Pirates of the Caribbean opened in Walt Disney World on December 15, 1973. Walt had this idea in the 1950s but it wasn’t until the mid 1960’s that he and his team were able to make it a reality. The original Pirates of the Caribbean opened in Disneyland in California in 1967.
This attraction will take you on a boat ride through the West Indies in the 1700’s when Spain brought gold from the New World back home and the pirates were waiting. You will sail for 8 1/2 minutes as you see Pirate ships battling in the Caribbean, searching for gold in the city, chasing women, sitting in jail, drinking beer and singing songs. There are 125 Audio-Animatronics figures including 65 pirates and villagers and 60 animals and birds.
- This is a must do attraction at Walt Disney World! It’s a classic!
- As you are waiting for this attraction, take notice of the things in the queue. Imagineers did a great job theming this as you wait.
- When it’s hot or rainy, this is a great attraction to head to. The queue and attraction are all indoors.
- This is a dark attraction. If your children are scared, bring a small keychain size light to turn on to help with the fear.
- Some kids are scared of the Pirates and this attraction. My son rode as early as 22 months and loved it! If your child is scared, suggest looking for silly things the pirates are doing rather than focusing on the “bad stuff.” Or have your child search for animals among the different scenes. It may take her mind off the pirates.
|image from wdwnews.com|
The Swiss Family Treehouse is located in Adventureland and opened in October of 1971 when Magic Kingdom Park opened. This attraction is based on the 1960 live action movie “Swiss Family Robinson.” In the film, the Robinson family’s boat, the Swallow, was shipwrecked and using supplies from the ship, they were able to build a treehouse to live in. “Everything we need is right at our fingertips,” said Mr. Robinson.
As you walk through this attraction, which will take you about 15 minutes, you will encounter all the rooms you would expect to find in a regular house: a living room, kitchen, dining room, crows nest (which is the sons room), a study/ library, and a jungle lookout. Throughout the tree are plaques that tell the story of the Robinson Family and the three boys: Fritz, Ernst and Francis.
The treehouse is 60 feet tall and weighs about 200 tons. The concrete root system goes 42 feet into the ground. There are 300,000 lifelike polyethylene leaves on the tree with 1,400 individual branches. The trunk is 15 feet and there are 9 main limbs where the rooms sit. The tree is built to represent a banyan tree, but Disney has named it “Disneyodendron Eximus” which means “an out of the ordinary Disney tree.” (I’m sure the Tree of Life has the same name at Animal Kingdom!)
- This attraction has 116 stairs. Guests must be able to walk this attraction or be carried by another guest. If you require a stroller, wheelchair or ECV, you will need to skip this attraction.
- Children need to be supervised at all times while on this attraction.
- Children under age 7 must be accompanied by a guest older than 14.
- Consider touring the treehouse later in the day when crowds at this attraction may be lower. It will give you longer times to read the plaques.
- Take time to look out from the treehouse- you can get fabulous views of the park!