Since the day Disneyland park opened, the Jungle Cruise has been one of its most popular attractions. As you cruise the rivers of the world, you’re surrounded by fascinating animal life and a lush jungle of exotic trees, plants and flowers – a unique ecosystem that has its own storied past.
When building the Jungle Cruise, Walt Disney turned to Imagineer and horticulturist Bill Evans to create the landscape. Rather than create a true-to-life jungle though, Bill’s goal was to develop a “Hollywood Jungle,” a mixture of exotic plants and trees that would give the feeling of traveling through exciting and uncharted territories. To create his Hollywood Jungle here in Anaheim, Bill developed some intrepid techniques, like smuggling plant seeds inside the cuffs of his socks and planting orange trees upside down to resemble mangroves.
Bill also worked with the site’s existing horticulture when designing the Jungle Cruise. Originally planned for the east side of Disneyland park (where Tomorrowland would be built), Adventureland was moved to the west side of Main Street, U.S.A., to incorporate the large eucalyptus trees planted there by the orange farmers who previously owned the land. Planted to function as a windbreak for the orange groves, these trees made the perfect visual barrier, hiding all the mysteries that lay within the Jungle Cruise.
Through the years, the tall trees engulfing the Jungle Cruise have created a lush canopy that regulates the temperature inside this Hollywood Jungle, allowing plants that you won’t find anywhere else in Southern California to thrive right here in Disneyland park.
If you want to learn more about the horticulture of the Jungle Cruise, as well as other areas of Disneyland park, check out the Cultivating the Magic Guided Tour, where you will discover how horticulture is used to help tell stories and helped achieve Walt Disney’s vision for his original Magic Kingdom.
Your votes have been counted, and it’s time for some of your favorite long-lost Disney friends to step into the spotlight here at Disneyland park for some “Limited Time Magic.” From April 8-14, you will find them at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree in Frontierland. So, who were the winners of our online poll? Drumroll, please …
You will have the chance to visit the following long-lost Disney friends during this “Limited Time Magic” event:
From “Pocahontas” – Pocahontas, John Smith, Meeko and Governor Ratcliffe
From “Robin Hood” – Robin Hood, Friar Tuck, Prince John and Sheriff of Nottingham
And my favorite “duck duo” – Scrooge McDuck and Ludwig Von Drake
But that’s not all! There will be even more long-lost Disney friends to see, so make plans to visit Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree from April 8-14 to find out who else will be visiting during this special event.
Which long-lost Disney friends are you most excited to see?
Starbucks Coming to Disney Parks
It was only one year ago this month that we first learned about Starbucks coming to Disney Parks. Since then, a location has opened at Disney California Adventure park and three more locations have been announced at Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot and Disneyland park.
One of the most relaxing, nostalgic experiences you can have at Disneyland park is riding the Disneyland Railroad. Ask anyone, and they will tell you about someone in their family (likely themselves) who insists on riding the railroad on each visit.
Each steam engine on this historic line has its own personality and story. Originally called the Santa Fe and Disneyland Railroad, the first two locomotives were named for pioneers of the Santa Fe Railroad. Let’s start off by meeting Engine No. 1, the C.K. Holliday.
The C.K. Holliday was named for Cyrus Kurtz Holliday, founder of the Atchison & Topeka Railroad (later the Santa Fe Railroad, established in 1859). The locomotive was built by WED Enterprises (now Walt Disney Imagineering) in Burbank, Calif., from a design inspired by Walt Disney’s model train engine, the Lilly Belle – centerpiece of his backyard railroad, the Carolwood Pacific. It joined the Disneyland Railroad on opening day, July 17, 1955.
Here are some specs for C.K. Holliday:
Stack Design: Diamond
Track Gauge: 36″
Wheel arrangement: 4-4-0 American
Weight: 23,200 lbs
Check back as we feature the rest of the Disneyland Railroad steam engines here on the Disney Parks Blog.
Attention Iron Man fans! To celebrate the upcoming release of “Iron Man 3,” opening in theaters May 3, an exciting new exhibit is coming to Innoventions at Disneyland park in California – featuring actual set pieces from the film!
Beginning April 13, Iron Man Tech Presented by Stark Industries will give Disneyland park guests the chance to see Tony Stark’s Hall of Armor, featuring Iron Man suits Mark I-VII – the same suits featured in “Iron Man 3.” And you will even be able to virtually “suit up,” yourself! Through simulation technology, guests will be able to see what it’s like to operate the latest pieces of the Mark 42 Iron Man armor, even getting the chance to test out its infamous repulsor blasts.
Come experience Iron Man Tech Presented by Stark Industries when it opens at Innoventions in Disneyland park April 13 – and then check out “Iron Man 3” in theaters May 3.
Many Disneyland park regulars like to enjoy a quiet, peaceful meal by the water at Fowler’s Harbor. You can grab a bread bowl filled with your favorite soup at Harbour Galley, sit and watch the activity on the Rivers of America. Take a look around, though, and you’ll find details that tell the story of a not-so-busy boat landing. One of the locals advertising his services is Ezekiel Talbot – but do you remember what he does?
With the recent opening of Fantasy Faire at Disneyland park, there’s been a lot of talk of princesses lately. Aurora, Rapunzel, Ariel – the names of these lovely ladies have been on everyone’s lips. It got me thinking about which I would choose as my favorite Disney princess. Each has her own unique qualities – Snow White’s innocent goodness (which is obviously shared with the mini Snows in the photo above), Cinderella’s tireless work ethic … the list goes on. But I keep coming back to Belle because of her stubborn independence and love of literature – she’s just someone I think I’d like to hang out with.
What about you – who is your favorite Disney princess? Tell me who and why in the comments.
UPDATE 3/28/13: Market House and Disneyana will close for refurbishment on April 14.
I’ve got updates to share with you today about some big changes coming to Main Street, U.S.A., at Disneyland park. First, Starbucks will be making its much-anticipated debut inside Market House this fall. To make room for this exciting addition, Market House will close next month to begin an expansion into the adjacent space currently occupied by Disneyana.
Disney art and collectible fans will soon be able to find all their favorite treasures in one location, as Disneyana will move to a new home inside the Bank of Main Street building, the current location of the Disney Gallery. The new, combined location will continue to present a rotating Gallery Exhibit, featuring Walt Disney Imagineering concept art and pieces from local artists. (In fact, we will have information soon about the newest exhibit, featuring art inspired by Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, celebrating its 50th anniversary this summer.)
Market House will reopen this fall, still themed as a turn-of-the-century general store, serving Starbucks products and a selection of specialty Disney pastries. I’ll have more updates here on the Disney Parks Blog as the project progresses, so keep checking back.
Don’t have a lot of green in your wardrobe? Still trying to figure out how to incorporate a verdant shade into your St. Patrick’s Day ensemble? Love “it’s a small world“? I’ve got the solution for you – make your own “it’s a small world” shrink charm bracelet featuring children of Ireland, Celtic knots and four-leaf clovers.
You can get step-by-step directions for this adorable accessory at Spoonful.com, along with downloadable “it’s a small world” coloring pages featuring an Ireland scene from the classic Disney Parks attraction.
And be sure to check out these posts for all the St. Patrick’s Day fun here at Disney Parks this weekend!