“it’s a small world” is a classic Disney attraction, located at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort. The ride features hundreds of dolls singing and dancing to the iconic song of the same name, “it’s a small world”.
But did you know that a majority of the ride does not take place where you may have originally thought?
Guests actually enter a hidden show building for a majority of the “it’s a small world” ride. If you are not familiar with what a show building is, these are created by Disney Imagineers and are a necessity to house an attraction that lasts as long as, say, Splash Mountain, The Haunted Mansion, “it’s a small world” or Pirates of the Caribbean without taking away from the attraction’s facade.
Basically, rides such as “it’s a small world” need a lot more space to tell the full story, but utilizing giant industrial-looking buildings are, of course, not pleasant to look at and will take away from the theming that Disney is known for. So, in order to make this work, these show buildings are often hidden from Guests’ views to preserve the Park’s magic.
Even though you cannot see these show buildings while standing inside the park — you can see them from a bird’s eye view, such as on Google Earth!
As seen in the screenshot above and below, the true size of “it’s a small world” is massive compared to what Guests can see when they are inside the Park.
You can also see the true size of the Haunted Mansion attraction, located behind “it’s a small world” as both show buildings are nearly touching!
If you have never experienced “it’s a small world”, the official Walt Disney World description reads:
“The Happiest Cruise That Ever Sailed”
Sing along to the classic anthem of world peace during a delightful musical boat tour. Cruise along the Seven Seaways Waterway on a gentle 10-minute journey through all 7 continents. Pass through vivid, fantastical scenes representing the iconic sights and sounds of dozens of nations.
Behold a cast of dancing darlings from nearly every corner of the globe and watch as the Audio-Animatronics figures achieve universal harmony as they sing one song in many languages.
By journey’s end, Walt Disney’s simple message is clear: it truly is a small world after all!
History, After All
“it’s a small world” was created for the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair. Personally overseen by Walt Disney in support of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the attraction was a huge hit. After 2 seasons there, it was shipped to Disneyland park, where it opened on May 28, 1966.
In 1971, “it’s a small world” was recreated to become one of the Opening Day attractions at Walt Disney World Resort. Due to its immense popularity, the attraction has been replicated at many Disney theme parks around the world and is considered a Walt Disney masterpiece.
Is “it’s a small world” a must ride for you and your family? Let us know in the comments below.
If you want to visit Walt Disney World on your next family vacation to experience the four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — but aren’t sure where to begin planning, then don’t hesitate to reach out to our friends over at the Authorized Disney Vacation Planners at Academy Travel for a free quote.