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Today in Disney History: Indiana Jones Adventure Opened at Disneyland Park in 1995

Michael Ramirez

by , Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort

Grab your fedora and bullwhip! Today, Indiana Jones Adventure is celebrating 25 years as one of the most thrilling rides here at the Disneyland Resort. On March 3, 1995, the Temple of the Forbidden Eye that was discovered by Indiana Jones was opened for guests to explore in the heart of Adventureland. Since then, it has brought ancient secrets and a suspense-filled journey to guests of Disneyland park. Let’s put our archeology skills to the test and dig into the history of the attraction. 

Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Park

Based on the Indiana Jones films, Indiana Jones Adventure features exotic chambers, hidden gems and suspense around every corner. As you climb aboard the jungle transport and look into the eyes of the deity Mara, you are suddenly taken on a high-speed journey as you work to escape the wrath of the vengeful goddess. The attraction was created through a collaboration between George Lucas, the creator of the Indiana Jones franchise, and Walt Disney Imagineering. 

Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Park

When the attraction first opened, it was the largest attraction at Disneyland and increased the size of Adventureland by 33 percent. When Imagineers were developing Indiana Jones Adventure, they thought of featuring an out-of-control mine car, similar to the one that is found in “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.” However, Imagineers ultimately decided against the mine car since Disneyland already had one in Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. However, the mine car idea still made its way to the attraction in another way. As you walk through the exit of the attraction, you will see a mine car that was used in the filming of “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.”

Indiana Jones Adventure

There are many other connections between the Indiana Jones Adventure attraction and the Indiana Jones movies. The screenwriters who wrote “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,” Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz, also consulted on the script for Indiana Jones Adventure. Also, inside the attraction, one of the crates on the wall of Indiana Jones’ office in the queue area is labeled, “Deliver to: Club Obi Wan.”— a reference to the opening scene of “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” and a tribute to the Obi Wan Kenobi character in George Lucas’ Star Wars films. 

Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Park

In addition, one of the German patrol trucks that was featured in the first Indiana Jones film “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” can be found in the outside queue area of the attraction. When you look closely, you will see golf balls on the handlebars of the front bumper that were placed there for one of the car chase stunts in the film. Lastly, while on the attraction, the music you hear is the original score from the Indiana Jones films that was adapted, arranged and recorded for the ride. 

Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Park

When building the Temple of the Forbidden Eye for Indiana Jones Adventure, inspiration for the sandstone temple came from the Hindu temples at Banteay Srei and Angkor Wat in Cambodia and the Mahamallapuram, Virupaksha and Elura temples of India. Inside the temple, you will find more than 1,300 props throughout the queue, more than 168,000 square feet of hand-carved surfaces, a 45-foot-tall decaying skull of Mara, a 100-foot-long King Cobra, more than 2,000 replicated human skulls and 2,129 snakes.

Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Park

The Play Disney Parks app* recently added an in-queue experience to Indiana Jones Adventure entitled “Indiana Jones Adventure – the Gifts of Mara.” This game allows you to decode ancient glyphs, symbols and codes along the queue of the attraction. The translated code comes together to complete a map that unlocks digital achievements and a special message from Mara herself.

Can you avoid the eyes of Mara and find the great treasures you seek? Head on over to the Disneyland Resort to brave unimaginable perils and celebrate 25 thrilling years of Indiana Jones Adventure.

If you are looking to celebrate the anniversary of this fan-favorite attraction, check out these engaging experiences and fun offerings that every archaeologist must discover! 

*Available for iPhone® and AndroidTM smartphones.

Message, data and roaming rates may apply. Availability subject to handset limitations, and features may vary by handset, service provider or otherwise. Coverage and app stores not available everywhere.  If you’re under 18, get your parents’ permission first. Some app features require separate theme park admission.

Comments

  • Hard to believe it’s been 25 years since I sat on Main Street watching the cavalcade of celebrities heading towards Adventureland to ride this. Dennis Miller’s “That was surreal” comment is still one of my favorites. I know I had to pick my jaw up from the floor of the jeep before I disembarked. I was absolutely blown away the first time I went on this!

  • So Indiana Jones opened on my wife’s 35th birthday, and Pirates of the Caribbean opened on my 10th birthday. I guess that shows we were meant to be together.

  • Good job, great post. And Happy 25 years Indiana Jones Adventure! One of the absolute best rides in any Disney park.

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