In true Disney fashion, the four theme parks within the Walt Disney World Resort—and the attractions inside them—are constantly being maintained, refurbished and upgraded so that the most magical place on Earth remains on the cutting edge of ride technology and so that the rides and attractions are clean, safe and enticing for Guests. Disney World often adds new attractions to its theme parks to commemorate a celebration, a time or a new feature film.
And though some think of Epcot has the “educational” park, the “park that only has the countries,” etc., it is within the gates at Epcot that some of the most exciting attractions are located – highlighting the genius of Disney Imagineering.
The Frozen Ever After attraction at Epcot boasts some of the newest attraction technology at Disney World. And just like the film after which it was created, this attraction is wildly successful among Guests in the parks. See for yourself as you try to reserve a FastPass+ time for this dynamic attraction. Unless you’re doing so 30-60 days in advance, you may find that the FastPass+ times for Frozen Ever After are few and far between.
What makes the ride so fun? What’s the draw? Here are 8 really cool (or should I say freezing cold) things about the attraction that make it one you need to FastPass before your next trip to the parks.
8. It’s new(ish)!
Frozen Ever After attraction was built inside the Norway pavilion on the World Showcase at Epcot. It was constructed inside the same building that held the Maelstrom attraction from its ships’ maiden voyages on July 5, 1988. Rumors began to circulate in August of 2014 that the Maelstrom ships would be making their final journeys later that year. In September of 2014, the rumors were confirmed by Disney. It was true—the Maelstrom attraction would be closing on October 5, 2014, exactly 26 years and 3 months after it opened.
Though Disney fans were sad to see the Maelstrom go, many were thrilled to have a new attraction. Many Disney fans agree that the World Showcase is deserving of and due an overhaul in some areas. And one of the draws of the Frozen Ever After attraction is that when it opened on June 21, 2016, it was the first major change/addition that had taken place on the Showcase in years. Though change is hard, new is good, and Disney always does it up right!
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7. A nod to the Maelstrom
Another really cool thing about the Frozen Ever After attraction is that it doesn’t totally eliminate any remembrance of the Maelstrom attraction. The Norwegian vessels used in the Maelstrom attraction are the ones used in the new Frozen attraction. Imagineers even used the same ride track, and the lead engineer who worked to bring the Frozen attraction to fruition also worked to help construct the Maelstrom attraction in the 1980s. I won’t spoil it for you here, but keep your eyes open for some other hints of the Maelstrom throughout the attraction!
6. The gang’s all here!
When Imagineers first constructed the Snow White’s Scary Adventure attraction at Magic Kingdom, they didn’t include Snow White as part of the ride. That was confusing for some Guests. Thankfully, they didn’t make that mistake in the Frozen Ever After attraction. Guests don’t have to hope their favorite characters are part of the ride because they are all there! Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Sven, Kristoff, Hans and even the minor characters are all part of the ride. The attraction even pays homage to the “Frozen Fever” short and includes the snowgies as well!
5. Sing along to your favorite songs from Frozen.
No new songs were created for the new attraction, which is great because just about everyone knows at least parts of the songs from Frozen. (If you have young daughters, you know every song. Every word. Every character’s part. You can’t escape it: you even hear the songs as the soundtrack to your dreams at night.) But there is a special touch because the original songwriters/composers Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson worked with Imagineers and revised some of the lyrics to the popular Frozen songs to be used in the attraction. Listen closely and see if you can hear the different lyrics.
4. Upgraded animatronics
The attraction showcases new audio-animatronic technology. The Frozen Ever After attraction is home to the first ever all-electric audio-animatronics. Previously, the animatronics used either pneumatics or hydraulics to create movements. The electric technology allows the robots’ movements to be more fluid and less “jerky.” The attraction also uses rear-projection technology on the animatronics to make their faces and facial expressions seem more lifelike.
3. The original cast is there!
A really special touch to the attraction is that all of the music sung as part of the ride was done so by the original cast from the Frozen film. Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, Josh Gad and Jonathan Groff all lent their voices to the attraction to make it seem even more like Guests are immersed in the feature film.
2. Stunning attention to detail
As is usual for Disney Imagineers, painstaking attention to detail is evident throughout the ride. Imagineers who designed the attraction worked directly with a team of animators from the feature film so that movements, expressions, etc., are true to those of the characters in the movie.
1. Enjoy a dessert party
You and your family can enjoy the attraction as part of the Frozen Ever After Sparkling Dessert Party. The event costs $79 for adults and $47 for kids (in addition to park admission) and begins at World Showcase Plaza East where you can feast your eyes on a lavish dessert buffet. Enjoy Elsa’s warm cottage pudding, vanilla bean ice cream, fresh fruit and berries, Anna’s blue velvet cupcakes, Olaf’s s’mores pudding cake and more. Then enjoy seeing the “Epcot Forever” nighttime spectacular from a reserved viewing area. After the Epcot Forever show, you and your family will head to the Norway pavilion to experience the Frozen Ever After attraction.
If you haven’t yet experienced this amazing new attraction for yourself, be sure to book your FastPass+ times as soon as possible—60 days in advance if you’re staying on Disney property and 30 days in advance if you are staying elsewhere. If you’ve already had the chance to see this wonderful attraction, I’m sure you’re already planning to reserve a FastPass+ time too. This icy attraction is super cool, so don’t miss it!