11 September 2007

Around the World - Take a last good look at the dock

I hope you brought your sea legs with you today, because we’re discussing the boats of the World today. Sure, you know there are a few boats rides, and yes, the ferries that carry guests from the Transportation and Ticket Center to the Magic Kingdom are always present, but, you’d be surprised just how much time you can spend on the water inside of Walt Disney World. To give you an idea of the depth of watercraft, here’s a list of the various boats/rafts/etc. you could travel on:

--The Irvine, Fowler, and General Joe Potter Ferries run from the Transportation and Ticket Center to the Magic Kingdom
--Motor launches run from the Polynesian, Grand Floridian, Contemporary, Wilderness Lodge, and Fort Wilderness to the Magic Kingdom
--Motor cruisers run from Fort Wilderness and Wilderness Lodge to the Magic Kingdom
--Inside the Magic Kingdom boats of some type are used on Pirates of the Caribbean, Splash Mountain, it’s a small world, the Liberty Belle Riverboat, rafts to Tom Sawyer’s Island, the Jungle Cruise, and Peter Pan’s Flight (although that ship flies rather than floats)
--In Epcot The Three Caballeros Grand Fiesta Tour, Maelstrom, and The Land all have boats
--Also at Epcot are the Friendships which run from Morocco to Canada, Germany and Mexico, and to Disney-MGM Studios. The Studios Friendship makes stops at Boardwalk, Yacht and Beach Club, the Swan, and the Dolphin
--Within the borders of Animal Kingdom you can board a raft on Kali River Rapids
Outside of the theme parks, small ferries run from Port Orleans French Quarter, Port Orleans Riverside, Old Key West, and Saratoga Springs to Downtown Disney and back.
--Concerning resorts, there are several marinas at various resorts that offer a variety of watercraft, including the Sea Raycers
--While there are no boats in the Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon water parks, there are tubes and other type of gear that can be used on water

Let’s not stop there though, let’s dig a little further and bring up some interesting facts. Looking at the extinct attractions at the Magic Kingdom, Swan Boats used to run around the moat in front of Cinderella Castle when the park first opened, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea used submarines! Additionally, there are miniature replicas of the Jungle Cruise boats at Shrunken Ned’s Junior Jungle Boats that for a few quarters you can pilot around a small pond. To give you another odd detail to think about, at Epcot you can find boats in The Land but not in The Seas. While Disney-MGM Studios have no watercraft that guests can ride on, there are boats used in the Lights, Motors, Action stunt show, as well as in Fantasmic!

So, next time your feet hurt from walking all day long, take a moment to consider your day and take notice of just how much time you spent on the waterways of Walt Disney World.

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