Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Little Things: Adventureland

The Disney Details are one of the most important parts in making Walt Disney World s stand out among the rest.  They are little touches or experiences that they don't have to include, but the parks would feel somewhat naked if they weren't there. 

It's time to take a look at some of the smaller details that can be found in probably one of the most themed lands in all of Walt Disney World, Adventureland.  Adventureland is the land of daring and mystique.  It's the land of jungles, pirates, and tiki culture.  While you wouldn't think that these would all work together, they totally do in one fantastic land.

We start our journey entering from Main Street USA.  I absolutely love the sign that can be found welcoming you to the land.  It's classic Adventureland.  But the thing that I'm going to discuss is the volcano rock bench that sits right out front.  Wait...what?  Volcano rock bench? to the right hand side, before you actually enter Adventureland, there is a beautiful planter that doubles as seating and it's made from volcano rock.  It is filled with palm trees and a tiki and is a wonderful teaser for what is to come when you actually enter the land. (Ok...I SWORE I had a pic of this planter...I'll be in WDW this weekend and will take one to post!)

The view from Swiss Family Treehouse
Next, is an attraction that I think most people walk right past.  I know I was guilty of doing just that for years.  I'm talking about the Swiss Family Treehouse.  I know you're can people miss an entire attraction, but with it's mostly unassuming entrance, the fact that Swiss Family Robinson isn't a movie that's particularly relevant in this day and age, and the fact that the treehouse is pushed back from the main part of the path, it gets done quite frequently. I've been know to take in this attraction when I want to get away.  It's the perfect spot to avoid the hustle and bustle of the busy park below.  Plus, when you get to to the top, it affords you an amazing view. Don't skip this the next time.  You won't be sorry.

Speaking of attractions, one of the most famous attractions in this section of the park is the Jungle Cruise. While the jokes are certainly corny, there is one time that's better to ride...and that's at night.  Now, if you haven't ever ridden, then, I certainly suggest taking it in during the daytime, but at night, it just feels, as I would say, Junglier.  The lush foliage surrounds you and it's so so dark.  (The boats have a light on them, but it only shines so far out.  Enough to see the scenes, but not much else.)  Just trust me.  Ride this one at night.  It will give you a whole new perspective.  (PS:  Make sure to listen to the radio program that airs as you're waiting in the queue.  Matter of fact, the queue here should be another little thing added to this list.  There are a ton of little gags...I especially like the menu...and how everything seems to resemble one particular dish.)

Of course, you can't forget the sweets and Adventureland is home to two incredible finds.  The Dole Whip has become the most famous of the two.  This pineapple flavored soft serve is a cult classic.  It can be served on it's own or as part of a float.  Pick this delectible treat up at Aloha Isle.  In the mood for something with an orange flavor?  Then head over to Sunshine Tree Terrace where you can grab a citrus swirl.  It's vanilla, it's's like the best creamsicle ever.  It was gone for a long time, but recently within the past few years, it has made a triumphant come back. 

Also recently making a comeback, while you're at Sunshine Tree Terrance, be on the lookout for the Little Orange Bird.  This cute little guy with an orange for a head is one of those pieces of nostalgia for many who would visit the parks in the 70s/80s.  I won't tell you exactly where you can find him, but be on the lookout when you visit this stand. 

You know what I love about this land?  It's tie to the Polynesian culture.  (This land is supposed to tie into the Polynesian Resort, in case you didn't know.)  Take a look everywhere and see if you can spot all the tikis that surround the land.  They all have different faces and some even squirt water when it's hot! 

Captain Jack is ready to lead
I also LOVE the music of this land.  It's so rhythmic.  Many people don't notice it, but it absolutely sets the mood.  When it comes on I just get happy. Take a listen the next time you're down there and notice how happy you feel too!   

Ready to go on a Pirate adventure?  Well, you don't have to hop on Pirates of the Caribbean to get a taste of Captain Jack Sparrow.  Instead, make sure to catch the fabulously entertaining Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate Tutorial.  Here, little ones can get up on stage and learn to become pirates.  And Captain Jack is extremely suave.  Try not to swoon too much ladies. 

A Pirates Adventure can be found near Pecos Bills
One last way to get your pirate on is by taking part in A Pirates Adventure - Treasures of the Seven Seas.  I talked about this a while back on the blog right after it opened and had mixed feelings on it.  I felt it may be a little hard for people not familiar with the parks.  I wonder if I misjudged it and think I need to experience this again because it is a wonderful little diversion, especially for younger kids.  It also has some really interesting effects and lets you explore more of the land to learn about more of The Little Things Adventureland really does have to offer.    Make sure to put this on your list.  It's back on mine. 

Finally, there is one thing that's no longer in Adventureland that I desperately wish they'd bring back.  You see, a long time ago, there was a steel drum band that would play here.  Now, you must know...I am a sucker for steel drums.  (I actually hired a steel drum band to play at my wedding joke.)  While I never got to see this personally, this would be such a fantastic addition to bring back.  It sets the tune (literally) of the land so well and I miss all the live entertainment that they used to have so prevalently around the park.  So, Disney, please, please bring back the steel drums!  We miss them! 

That's gonna do it for this edition of The Little Things, but I'm sure I've missed something that you think should be on this list.  Let me know what it is in either the comments or on my Facebook page. 

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