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The Jungle Cruise at Magic Kingdom

The Jungle Cruise is an awe-inspiring tour of two of the largest rivers in the world.

Situated within the Adventureland area, The Jungle Cruise is the biggest attraction in the entire Magic Kingdom, occupying over two-thirds of Adventureland alone.

The size of The Jungle Cruise is only rivalled by the Liberty Square Riverboat attraction.

The history of The Jungle Cruise is quite extensive.

It is one of the primary Disney attractions that was present in the very first Disneyland park at Anaheim, CA.

Since opening in July, 1955, The Jungle Cruise has been exported to various other Disney parks, including Disneyland at Hong Kong and Tokyo.

While the general theme of The Jungle Cruise is the same across all parks, there are many aspects of each Jungle Cruise that are different.

For example, the rivers and animals differ between parks, as does the structure and size of the cruise journey.

This guarantees that The Jungle Cruise at Magic Kingdom is a unique experience that cannot be had anywhere else.

Queues are typically one of the most unattractive aspects of going to a theme park.

The Jungle Cruise Interactive Queue

Disney has addressed this brilliantly at Magic Kingdom: The Jungle Cruise queue is an enchanting experience in and of itself.

The queue contains a fantastic array of 1930s British Colony inspired items, such as hiking gear, survival tools and most notably the office of boat captain Albert Awol.

Once you have finished the little adventure in the queue, you are now ready to board one of the 15 available boats, each of which is named after a river.

Amazon Annie & Zambesi Zelda

For example, you may be lucky enough to be invited to board the Amazon Annie, or perhaps may be met by the Zambesi Zelda.

After boarding your boat, your sea captain, also known as the 'skipper', will introduce himself.

Now you begin your journey through the biggest and most beautiful tropical rivers on the planet.

Audio-Animatronic

You will first meet giant butterflies, which like all animals at Magic Kingdom, are powered by Disney's groundbreaking Audio-Animatronic technology.

This ensures that the animals you see are strikingly lifelike and truly feel like the real thing.

Congo River

The first river on The Jungle Cruise is the Congo, which is the world's ninth longest river.

You are then taken to an idyllic African beach only to be greeted by a huge python.

After this introduction you are now taken on a tour of wildlife common along the River Congo, including rhinos, hippos, elephants and even packs of ferocious lions devouring their prey.

Your boat captain will even interact with some animals that approach the boat in order to scare them away.

It is a very 'real' experience, and the beauty of The Jungle Cruise is also accompanied by the thrills of the danger of such wild animals.

Mekong River

Soon after escaping the clutches of fierce natives, you will now move on to the Mekong River, which is the world's 12th longest river and meanders through 6 separate countries in Southeast Asia.

Both the scenery and the animals are naturally very different from those of the Congo River: Instead of beaches, lions and hippos you now encounter temples, baboons and tigers.

The ending of The Jungle Cruise continues the feeling of danger within the attraction: One lucky passenger (perhaps you!) will be offered two shrunken heads!

The Jungle Cruise receives a holiday makeover in November.

By Marie Ospina
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