Disney is the one place in the world that can turn a frown upside down in an instant! Known as the Happiest Place on Earth, where all is magical, Disney World and Disneyland parks receive over a billion visitors each year! Yes, we know, all you’re seeing is dollar signs right now.
No matter how old you are, when you’re in Disney, you feel like a child all over again – that’s the magic of Disney. Walt Disney created an empire that will stand until the dawn of time, but what’s the secret? How do people worldwide still love two mice so much? Although we don’t know that answer, what we do know is that there are a couple freaky and odd tidbits that Disney has tried to conceal for quite some time. This magical place does come with its secrets.
20 There’s An Abandoned Theme Park
When people think of Disney, most immediately think of Magic Kingdom, but there are many more parks that Disney has to offer. So much so, that one park had to be abandoned.
Before Typhoon Lagoon came along, there was River County, which was their first water park. River County was left completely abandoned and there to deteriorate.
19 There’s A Suite Located In Cinderella’s Castle
As if visiting Disney isn’t expensive enough, if you have extra dough to spend, you can get a secret suite in Cinderella’s Castle! It turns out that no amount of money could get this Cinderella Castle penthouse though, as it is used for contest winners.
A-listers have stayed there, but besides that, it’s kept on the DL.
18 Underneath, A Secret Tunnel Can Be Found
The land is ginormous, and the employees refer to themselves as “cast members” in Disney. Well, these cast members, who make it from point A to point B very swiftly, use a secret underground tunnel. Yes, that is right ladies and gents, when you’re strolling through the Magic Kingdom, you’re on the second floor.
They go from one park to another without being seen, how magical?
17 A Cast Member Lost His Life
Disney offers a magical escape for visitors worldwide, but it seems not everyone makes it out alive. Javier Cruz, who was an employee at Walt Disney World, lost his life in a tragic incident.
The cast member, who was dressed as Pluto, passed away right at the start of a parade in Frontierland. The foot of his costume got stuck, and the float did not stop quickly enough.
16 They Have Used Real Skeletons
Forget The Haunted Mansion – what’s really creepy at Disneyland is the Pirates of the Caribbean ride!
It is a definite fan-favorite, and although the use of animatronics is impeccable, don’t kid yourself, there’s some real stuff in there, like human skeletons. Yes, there are actual human bones in the attraction you love.
15 The Park Smells Good For A Reason
Disney parks are so magical, that every day, they constantly pump scents throughout the parks – how delightful. One second you’re smelling freshly made cookies, the next candy apples, and turkey legs.
Well, that’s because the smarty-pants at Disney have installed smellitizers to get you to indulge in all the delicious food possible.
14 There’s Also An Abandoned Runway
Right before entering the Magic Kingdom, you may come across a strip of pavement that resembles a runway, and that’s because it once was. Leave it to Disney World to have their own runway and planes!
That did not last, and it got shut down before the opening of WDW. However, if ever you have time to spare, people have reported that you could hear the runway sing.
13 There Are Tons Of Ashes Scattered
Before people die, their request to their loved ones is to have their ashes spread at the Happiest Place on Earth. Well, it happens, and way more often than you think. People will bring the ashes of a loved one on a ride, and then let them go into the water.
The issue here? There are cameras everywhere, so cast members do see when that happens. And what do they do? They go vacuum up the remains of a person.
12 The Buildings Look Bigger Than They Are
Ever heard of a thing called, “forced perspective?” Well, Disney are the champions of bringing that to life. We hate to break your hearts, but Cinderella’s Castle is not as grand and enchanting as you believe it to be.
The architects built most of the parks’ buildings with certain techniques to make them look grander than they are. It’s basically all an illusion!
11 The Matterhorn Must Be Cursed
Where do we start! No, the ride is not cursed, but several bad things have happened on it because of people who thought they could outsmart the ride. Of all the rides, it is the Matterhorn that is marked with the most fatal and non-fatal incidents.
A fire broke out on the ride, too, once upon a time. So, why is it still functional?
10 The Passing Of A Driver
Not too long ago, in 2015, the monorail took an unexpected turn. A 21-year-old monorail driver, who was working a regular shift at the wonderful world of Disney, lost his life when he took the wheel. Two monorails collided head-on and resulted in a tragic death. We’re not too sure if we’d want to hop on the monorail.
9 There Was A Horror Film Made
We will always associate innocence with Disney, but certain secrets prove it isn’t as squeaky-clean as we think. Do us a favor and search Escape from Tomorrow on Google, and you may just feel the hairs on your body tingle.
A horror film was filmed at both Disney World and Disneyland, after dark. Disney did not condone it, as the filmmaker went about it without Disney’s permission.
8 People Dressed As Characters Are Underpaid
We all have this notion that it must be so rad to work at any Disney park! Come on, who wouldn’t want to be known as Jasmine or Goofy?
Well, if you want to pursue your dream of being a Disney character, do it at your home because they are completely underpaid for the job they do. They are walking around in heavy costumes all day, and sweating, while children marvel at them, yet, their wage is awful - to say the least.
7 Animals Are Bribed
How cool is the Animal Kingdom? You get to hop on a safari adventure as if you’re in Africa. Sounds banging, but there’s an unfavorable secret to it.
To get the African wildlife to stick around and entertain visitors, they bribe them. How? The species have air-conditioned rocks they lay on, and they provide them with cool water and treats - yikes.
6 Haunted Mansion Also Has Ashes
As if both Haunted Mansions were not daunting enough, people have to add some more freakiness to it. Here, visitors can not only find an awesome and sought-out attraction, but the remains of people scoured everywhere. We guess people dig the graveyard-esque vibe of the attraction. However, if people get caught, and they do, it’s vacuum time – again.
5 Some Groping Going On
Imagine going to Disney and having to call the cops on a character? Well, it has happened one too many times at the parks. Both Donald Duck and Tigger, who we evidently have a soft spot for, allegedly engaged in some fondling. No, not the actual characters, but the cast members prancing around dressed up as them.
4 It’s A Small World Is White
Oh, the infamous ride that visitors either love or hate; it depends how many times you can tolerate hearing, “it’s a small world after all.”
Well, the ride that encapsulates all cultures of the world, has its own little secret, too. Although the dolls are of different skin colors, their features remain Caucasian. Shame on them!
3 ‘Special’ Waiting Lines
Oh, Disney, why did you not know this was happening?
None of us like waiting in pesky lines, but if you’re visiting Disney, that should be a given. Well, a while back, folks with money to burn would pay handicap families to pose as if they were with them. That just made us cringe, especially since it took time before Disney addressed it.
2 It Was 'No Women Allowed'
Many do not recall that Snow White and the Seven Dwarves was the first Disney princess film and that it was made in the 1930s when societal norms were completely different.
A woman named, Mary V. Ford, was sent a rejection letter for the film stating, all creative work at the company was “performed entirely by young men.” We’re sure many avid Disney fans would not be too content about this.
1 Most Magical/ Deadliest Place In The World
Evidently, with all the power that Disney has, we will not here of all the fatalities that have occurred at their parks. It has been reported that over one-hundred people have passed away at the magical parks. We do not want to burst your bubble, but this is something to think about before you depart on your magical trip again.
Sources: The Daily Meal, Insider