I’m sticking with the Caribbean feel and jumping next door from the Blue Lagoon to Pirates of the Caribbean.
After the success of the 1964 New York World’s Fair, the original attraction opened in Disneyland in 1966/67. As one of the most popular of the original park attractions, it made sense for it to be replicated and given its own new story.
On entering the queue, guests are walking down a secret entrance leading into the arsenal in the heart of the pirates’ fortress. Once they are situated in the boats and have sailed past the Blue Lagoon restaurant, riders find themselves right in the middle of a pirate battle, watching them attack a fortress. After one dip, they then plunge into another battle scene where this time the pirates are attacking a sea port. Another larger dip, boats then travel through a treasure cove containing approximately 30,000 little objects, which Imagineers individually hand placed.
Next to It’s A Small World, Pirates of the Caribbean is the attraction that relies on animatronics to help tell its story and this version is no exception. Hundreds of pirates were crafted, the stars of the show being the duelling pirates, which at the time were two of the most technically advanced animatronics made – ironic really considering they don’t often work!
However the sense of pride for the Imagineers has always come from the realistic nature of the fire – when someone fired up the effects, one of the workmen panicked and phoned in the fire brigade. When they arrived and saw it work, they had a hard time not wanting to extinguish the flames! It happened in Disneyland too when Walt Disney brought the fire chief along to visit the original attraction – he panicked thinking the flames were real!
Having 40 boats that can seat up to 22 guests each, this is one attraction where, in theory, one is never queuing for very long. It is also fully accessible, which makes it a great family attraction and one that you can’t help but love.
What I love about Pirates of the Caribbean is that it is a thrill ride without being full of large thrills that would make me never want to board the attraction again. With ‘Yo Ho Yo Ho, A Pirates Life for Me’ as the backing track, it is a completely engrossing environment and it is easy to get lost in the story and the Caribbean setting. From riding past the Blue Lagoon, we are transported into a world of fiction that looks entirely realistic and I can’t think of anything better.
And as something that will now be rather short-lived, I liked the fact that the attraction remained the same despite the popularity of the films and the addition of film tie-in characteristics that overlay the attraction in Disneyland and Walt Disney World.
Now that it is currently under a major refurbishment that might add these long-rumoured additions, I hope that whatever extra detailing is done is subtle and to the same quality as before.
I don’t have any fun facts for this attraction so that is all for now.
Thanks for reading and have a brazzle dazzle day!