Monday, January 23, 2012

In Pursuit of Pirates #5 ~ We Wants the Redhead! Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean with Chad of Days in the Park


In Pursuit of Pirates continues today with Part #5.  So far we have shared pirate inspired memories, photo tips, scrapbook layouts and recipes. Today, Chad from Days In The Park shares his perspective on the Disneyland version of my favorite attraction - Pirates of the Caribbean.  I have never been to Disneyland, so I am quite excited to see the similarities and differences between the two attractions.  



Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean has always had a special place for me in my Days spent at The Park.  Historically, Pirates is one of the attractions that, although not a Disneyland Original (meaning it was not present at its inception in 1955), it is the original in terms of the different Pirates attractions at the different Parks around the world, and it is considered an iconic attraction within Disneyland.  When people talk about Disneyland, they often talk about Pirates of the Caribbean; it's that well known.

Pirates of the Caribbean opened in Disneyland in 1967, just three months after Walt Disney passed away.  It's especially significant, especially among those of us who claim Disneyland our "home", because it's the last attraction inside The Park that Walt Disney himself had a hand in creating.  It just makes it that much more special to us.  And I've always been fascinated by the fact that it was originally intended to be a "walk through" attraction, like a wax museum.  One can't help but wonder given what we know now (the fact it takes a full 15 minutes for a boat to float through!) just how long it would have taken to walk the attraction! 

The 30th Anniversary Plaque (1967 - 1997) proclaiming Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean "the original"

Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean is located in New Orleans Square, which is one of my favorite areas inside The Park, and the Pirates attraction fits in there perfectly with its exterior which is an exceptionally well-done homage to the antebellum south, and particularly the area of New Orleans, Louisiana nearing the mid-point of the 19th Century. 

The Pirates of the Caribbean attraction entrance with a little "Disneyland Dream Suite" on top

In Disneyland's Pirates, guests are treated to a boat ride (leaving from the infamous Laffite's Landing) through the bayous of New Orleans, and into the caverns where Pirates and "dead men tell no tales".  There's no shortage of skeletons, treasure, pirate booty (we just like saying that!), ships, wenches, wives chasing their husbands around with rolling pins, or guns and canons as you float along taking it all in.


I would have enjoyed (given that "Pursuing the Magic" is a Walt Disney World blog) to have been able to compare the two attractions and how they are different and similar, but unfortunately I remember next to nothing about the Disney World version so it would be impossible to do.  Also, I figure a play-by-play of the Disneyland attraction probably isn't nearly as interesting as it sounds so I've opted to give just a brief look at some of my favorite parts of the attraction for those who might be looking to go on it one day themselves.

  • I absolutely love the artwork which adorns the inside of the queue of the Pirates of the Caribbean, like the "Captain Charles Gibbs" above.  Don't ask why I didn't include a picture of the Jack Sparrow; that would have just been too easy.  But there's tons to look at on the inside; when you're eyes adjust to the dark, that is.
  • I've always loved how Disneyland's Pirates, once you leave the dock (Laffite's Landing), takes you directly past the Blue Bayou Restaurant.  I've always enjoyed floating by watching the people enjoying their fine meals, and it's always been a pleasure to sit on the other side and dine while watching Pirates patrons float by.  Something we've always enjoyed doing!
  • Who doesn't enjoy drops in the dark?  And Pirates of the Caribbean has two of them.  Even though it's not even remotely frightening anymore, I nevertheless scream like a little child each and every time.  No comment on whether people give me dirty looks or not when I do...
  • The song "Yo Ho (A Pirates Life For Me)"; need I say any more?
  • The infamous Disneyland "Pirates Fog".  I have no idea whether this is duplicated at any other Park, but at Disneyland, at one point during the attraction you travel through a patch of fog which has both Davey Jones and Blackbeard projected on it, warning you to turn back or "never leave this cursed place".  After Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean was refurbished after the success of the films (and Jack Sparrow was added to the attraction) Davey Jones and said fog were added as well.  With the release of "On Stranger Tides" last year, Blackbeard supplanted Davey Jones as a means of creating interest in the film shortly before its release.  We were surprised, pleasantly, to see that when we rode yesterday, they've both been kept now!  So, it's just a little bit of something that I thought was pretty cool and worth keeping a "weather eye out for".
  • Captain Barbossa on the deck of the "Wicked Wench" calling me a "blooming cockroach" over and over again.  Oh, and I also love how, if the boat times it just right, when the canons fire it will literally blow my cap right off of my head into the bottom of the boat.  It's happened on more than one occasion.  Seriously.
  • Carlos, the mayor of Puerto Dorado, constantly being dunked into the well while his wife looks on and yells at him not to be a "cheek in".  Never gets old.
  • Probably my favorite scene in any attraction, I love the auction scene and truly enjoy watching the pirate auctioneer selling off the town's women as brides.  Does that make me a bad person?  Of course, I have a particular affinity for the redhead, and love yelling out "We wants the redhead" at random times as I'm strolling through The Park, which can make things a bit testy when there's an actual redhead strolling by.  Hasn't stopped me yet, though...
Pirates of the Caribbean is just one of those attractions that never gets old for me.  At one point in time, my friend Mark and I (my co-creator at Days in the Park) had ridden the attraction on ~30 consecutive trips into Disneyland.  It was just something we had to do each and every time we went.  We never grew tired of it; the streak was broken due to the attraction breaking down at an inopportune time.  But since then we still ride it on a very regular basis, and enjoy it each and every time like we're riding it for the first!  We whoop, holler, yell, sing, laugh, mimick, and sometimes get soaked as we fly (okay, crawl) through those tunnels and I simply never tire of it.  I've always loved Pirates, and assume that I probably always will.

If you get a chance to come to Disneyland, and have never ridden the fantastic, iconic attraction before, the pirates are waiting for you.  And if you've ridden it at a Park other than Disneyland, the same applies.  It's a historic landmark in Disney history, and as "the original" Pirates attraction, it's worthy of a second, third, and even a hundredth look as well.

It just never gets old.  Drink up, me hearties, yo ho...

The parrot that never shuts up.  And we wouldn't have it any other way...
Thank you so much, Chad for sharing the Disneyland version of Pirates of the Caribbean!  I look forward to the day I make my way out west to experience it myself!


Days In The Park buttonIf you haven't visited Chad (and Mark) over at Days In The Park, I highly recommend that you do.  His love of Disneyland shines through every post, and if there is anyone who can get my out to Disneyland, it is Chad!  You can follow Days In The Park on Twitter at @DaysInThePark and like them on Facebook on the Days In The Park page.


Next Monday, Amanda from Manda's Disney Blog will be sharing Part #6, our final episode of the series, with a Disneyland Paris perspective on Pirates of the Caribbean.


Here are the posts included in the entire series:

12 comments:

Beth Green said...

great review Chad. I do remember both DL and WDW PotC and you're version is MUCH better!  We all made a mental note of that after we got off the DL attraction.  It's longer,  it has the drops, the loading area is better and I love passing by the restaurant!!  

Capturing Magical Memories said...

Love this review Chad of the Disneyland Pirates.  I so hope to see it myself some day!

DebSays said...

Great review of DL POTC! I love the WDW and hope that someday I'll get to see the DL version, it sounds like a very different experience!

Faithkorn said...

Amazing review. This just made me more excited. We will be visiting next month so we can't wait to savor the experience. Thanks a lot!

Faithkorn said...

Also we will make sure to visit Pirates of the Carribean =)

Beth D. said...

Thank you,Chad for sharing such a great overview!  I haven't experienced it in person, yet, but your post makes me even more excited to get planning a trip to the west coast!

Chad E said...

Thank you very much! :)

Chad E said...

Thanks Debs :) From what I hear it is quite different; I can't wait to get back east and ride the other version as well :)

Chad E said...

Thank you mary! I hope you get to see it one day, too :)

Chad E said...

Thank you Beth :) Glad that you enjoyed it - hope it brought back some great memories :)

Chad E said...

Thank YOU for having me along Beth - it was a lot of fun! Can't wait to ride it with you; first ride's on me! ;)

Beth D. said...

That sounds like a plan to me!