Alice in Wonderland in the Disney Parks

Alice in Wonderland
Alice in Wonderland

As I am gearing up for my next Disneyland trip that will be in a couple months, I am looking forward to visiting and going on my favorite ride multiple times: Alice in Wonderland. While this ride is my favorite of all the Alice in Wonderland themed rides and attractions, it is by no means the only thing themed after the 1951 animated classic. The movie, based on the Lewis Carroll story, spawned several rides in Disney Parks and resorts around the world that I’d like to highlight today. Each Disney property around the world has at least some representation of Alice in Wonderland in their parks.

 

Disneyland

Alice in Wonderland is the classic dark ride which opened June 14, 1958, is found exclusively at Disneyland, and has been a favorite of mine since my first trip five years ago. While it isn’t the first Alice attraction in Disneyland, it is my favorite. I love the new graphics from the latest refurbishment. Going inside and out and on the second level to go over the Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride Attraction is a fantastic use of space in Fantasyland.

Three original opening day attractions are based on or feature Alice in Wonderland. The Mad Tea Party (tea cups) are a favorite of many to this day. I especially love this ride at night lit up with the colorful lanterns. Also connected to Alice are both the Casey Jr. Circus Train and Storybook Land Canal Boats, from which you can see the English Village from Alice in Wonderland. As of 2008, the characters of Alice and the White Rabbit were added to it’s a small world.

Tea Cups at night
Tea Cups at night

 

Aside from rides, the influence of Alice appears in two shops in Disneyland, both called The Mad Hatter, one in Fantasyland and one on Main Street USA. Just around the corner from the Alice in Wonderland ride, you can find my favorite bathrooms in any park, which are themed around the cards who serve the Queen of Hearts. There’s also a very cute White Rabbit statue here.

In Downtown Disney, an art gallery called WonderGround Gallery takes its name and inspiration from the Alice stories. For the next few weeks one can also experience some Alice themed rock in the Diamond Mad T Party in California Adventure. The Mad T Party was just announced to be closing on March 30th, 2016. This dance party and area of Hollywood Land hosted concerts with musicians dressed up like Alice, The Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat, Caterpillar, March Hare, and Dormouse with hosts Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum. The House of Cards and Drink Me Bar carried on the theme in the evenings for the Mad T Party.

 

Walt Disney World

In the Magic Kingdom the most visible representation of Alice in Wonderland is in the Mad Tea Party in Fantasyland. Alice and friends can be seen in the evening Main Street Electrical Parade. The Cheshire Cafe is a quick service location where guests can find snacks right near the Mad Tea Party Gardens. In the evening before Wishes, Alice is shown along with the Cheshire Cat in the Celebrate the Magic castle projection show.

OHIO with the Mad Hatter at 1900 Park Fare
OHIO with the Mad Hatter at 1900 Park Fare

Other locations across Disney World property where Alice can be found are at the Grand Floridian. She participates along with the Mad Hatter each morning in the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare. The Beach Pool Water Play area was created a couple of years ago and features an Alice in Wonderland theme. Over at the Polynesian at Lilo’s Playhouse, Club Disney features an Alice play area with video games for the kids. In addition to meeting guests in the Magic Kingdom, Alice is usually found doing a meet and greet near the tea gardens in the UK in Epcot.

 

Disneyland Paris

Like all of the other Disneyland style parks around the world, Paris continues the tradition of a tea cup ride with their Mad Hatter’s Tea Cups. There’s also an Alice in Wonderland themed maze called Alice’s Curious Labyrinth in Fantasyland. In the amazing nighttime castle projection/water screen/laser/fireworks presentation called Disney Dreams, you can see clips of Alice projected onto Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. There is an incredible Alice in Wonderland float in the daytime Disney Magic on Parade. At Walt’s – an American Restaurant, the Fantasyland area has artwork and theming from Alice as well as several other stories.

Alice's Curious Labyrinth
Alice’s Curious Labyrinth

 

Hong Kong Disneyland

Artwork from Alice in Wonderland and many other Disney animated films are on display at the Art of Animation attraction on Main Street USA. Of course you can also find the Mad Hatter Tea Cups in Fantasyland. The spectacular nighttime show called Disney in the Stars Fireworks is a sight to be seen and like some of the other projection shows, this one features animation from Alice.

Mad Hatter Tea Cups
Mad Hatter Tea Cups

 

Tokyo Disneyland

Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall
Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall

There is probably the most variety in the Alice in Wonderland themed offerings in Tokyo. There is the traditional Alice’s Tea Party in Fantasyland. Then Alice can be seen in both parades in the park, during the day in the Happiness is Here Parade, and at night in the Tokyo Disneyland Electrical Parade Dreamlights riding on top of the Cheshire Cat. The coolest thing in the park (it appears to me who hasn’t been there, but has friends who have been) is the Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall. This entire restaurant is themed from top to bottom around Alice in Wonderland and it looks epic! In addition to the parks, the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel gets in on the fun with Alice in Wonderland themed rooms. Also, in April of 2015, Oriental Land Company announced an expansion of Fantasyland scheduled to start tentatively in 2017 which will include a new Alice in Wonderland section.

Alice in Wonderland themed room at Tokyo Disneyland Hotel
Alice in Wonderland themed room at Tokyo Disneyland Hotel

 

Shanghai Disney

I know this park isn’t opening until June of this year, but we already know they are going to have some influences from Alice in Wonderland when they do open. The most direct connection is the Alice in Wonderland Maze, but this will be more themed towards the 2010 Tim Burton movie than the 1951 animated classic. Shanghai is going to be the first of the Disneyland style parks around the world that does not have a tea cups ride. Instead, they will have a very similar, but Winnie the Pooh themed Hunny Pot Spin.

 

Outside of Shanghai, all of the Disneyland style theme parks (and Epcot) offer character meet and greets with at least Alice, and sometimes other characters like the Mad Hatter, White Rabbit, the Queen of Hearts, Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum. I could not find any evidence that there will be a meet and greet with Alice in Shanghai, but where the park hasn’t opened yet, this may change.

When I first started researching for this post, I thought I’d find one or two things outside the Magic Kingdom and Disneyland, but found myself almost overwhelmed at all of the incarnations in which you can find Alice in Wonderland all over the world. I hope to someday experience all of these, but in the meantime I will have to settle for looking forward to my Disneyland trip in May and hope that I get to go on my favorite ride multiple times.

Riding Alice In Wonderland
Riding Alice In Wonderland
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Author: Betsy

Scorpio. Passionate about movies, music, sports, Disney and my friends who are more like my family. Fiercely loyal and competitive. My thoughts are my own.

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