Disneyland was opened in 1955, and Disney World, in the year 1971. People to go there, to meet their favourite characters and princesses and have a gala time. One of the key attractions at the theme parks are the rides. Many rides have been started by Disney, and have also been discontinued, for various reasons. While some were too expensive, many didn’t even manage to become popular with the visitors. Some of the rides had to be closed as they were causing collateral damage to the other ones. Let us look at some of the closed rides in Disney theme parks.
10. Phantom Boats
The Disneyland ride, earlier known as Tomorrowland Boat, was started in 1955, but, it could only continue for a year. Visitors could hire the slow white vessels and ride along the lagoon. It was redesigned with tailfins which failed to popularise the ride, and instead turned out to be quite a mechanical horror. It often left the people stranded in the middle of the lagoon. The boat was seen last in the summer of 1956, after which it was removed.
9. Submarine Voyage
To replace the Phantom Boats and start a new water ride, the Submarine Voyage was started in 1956. It was inspired by the first nuclear-powered submarine, called Nautilus. There were 8 submarines, and one could take a ride in it to the re-created North Pole. Those on-board could see sea monsters, glowing fish, mermaids, etc. the submarine never actually went underwater. An illusion of diving deep into the sea was created by bubble jets. By 1998, the ride was closed in all the three parks where it existed, and replaced with renovated ride.
8. Rainbow Caverns Mine Train
Launched in 1956, the Mine Trains brought its passengers to the Rainbow Caverns after travelling through the Living Desert with its interesting rocks, precariously balanced boulders and cartoonish cacti. Riders could travel through a cavern with colourful lakes and waterfalls, and exit through the glowing rocks of Mineral Hall. It was closed in 1959 to be expanded in 1960 by the Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland, and by a roller coaster, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad in 1979.
7. Rainbow Mountain Stagecoach Ride
The stagecoaches were launched in 1956 in Frontierland to give the visitors an opportunity to experience the transportation of the Wild West. Riders could choose to sit inside or up top. Once on-board, the passengers would get to travel back in time and get transported through the Living Desert. The major flaw was that the stagecoaches often tipped over. Often, the harnesses broke, and the scared mules ran away, leaving the passengers stranded. It had to be closed in 1959.
6. Astro Jets
In 1956, a retro-futuristic ride on the Astro Jets, located in the heart of Tomorrowland, gave the visitors and opportunity to get a great view of the entire park. Two passengers could easily fit inside a single rocket, and there was a lever that made it possible to direct the rocket up or down. However, the ride was discontinued by Disney in the year 1966, only to be replaced by the Rocket Jets which had a more modern appearance, the following year.
5. Flying Saucers
The ride was launched in 1961, where saucers with seats to accommodate one person each were propelled by air valves across an arena. The rider had to shift his weight in order to change directions. Though it was quite a popular ride, but, if a larger guest sat and tried to ride it, a lot of problems would occur. As a result, the popularity began to drop, until finally, it had to be discontinued in 1966, and now, Space Mountain occupies the spot.
4. Flight to the Moon
This ride, launched in 1967, was earlier known as Rocket to the Moon, and was later renamed as the Flight to the Moon. It took place in the Moonliner which was the giant spaceship in the middle of Tomorrowland. It was the tallest structure at that time in the park. Inside, as the passengers sat in vibrating chairs surrounded by projectors, the screens showed images of the moon. The simulated ride was replaced by Mission to Mars in 1975, as man had travelled to the moon by then.
3. Journey into Imagination
This attraction was launched in 1983, and has undergone many changes and improvements ever since. The original ride took its passengers gliding through make-believe clouds. Then, they would be greeted by Dreamfinder, a man with a top hat, goggles and beard, who would fly over to them and take them along on a drive to collect dreams through rooms of different themes like literature, art, science, etc. The ride was closed in 1998. Today, there is a Journey into Imagination with Figment.
2. Adventure thru Inner Space
The 1967-attraction required passengers to climb into Atommobiles which entered a giant microscope. Here, they were ‘shrunk’ to a microscopic size as other waiting for their turn watched. Then the shrunk passengers were shot through snowflakes and were greeted by giant snowflakes. The sights would gradually change, and all the while, a giant eye watched the ride through a microscope. The ride was closed in 1985, to be replaced by Star Tours in 1886.
1. Delta Dreamflight
Started in the year 1989, the ride’s objective was to encourage people to travel the world. It aimed to advertise Delta Airlines. The ride was set up in a backdrop with a storybook style, and featured projection screen and animatronics, all in quite a hodgepodge. The passengers had to wait in an area that looked very much like a terminal, and once they climbed the tiny Delta Jets, they would go on journey through the ride. This attraction was discontinued in 1998.
Other Rides in Disney Theme Parks that are now defunct are Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, The Walt Disney Story, Rocket Rods, ExTERRORestrial Alien Encounter, World of Motion, PeopleMover, etc. The theme parks by Disney constantly strive to provide the best entertainment to the visitors, and that is why, they are always on a path of evolution. The rides may come and go, but, the fun in these parks is something that is constant.