The Jungle Cruise Information
The Jungle Cruise is a 10 minute winding meandering boat cruise through the tropics, along lands populated by Lions, Giraffes, Hippos, Elephants, and other assorted audio animatronic animals. The ride was at least partly inspired by a 1955 documentary film produced by Disney
All of the vegetation in the ride is real, some requiring considerable horticultural attention to combat the hot Floridian summer. Hidden from view, are large gas powered heaters, water misters, and ventilation fans designed to maintain a consistent temperature and humidity for some of the more tender tropical plants.
Geographically the ride is a little odd to say the least, as the scenery alternates between the forests of Southeast Asia and the Nile valley, giving way to Amazonian Rainforests, African plains and Cambodian buildings. All the way through the ride a very jaunty and incredibly corny commentary is provided by the boats captain.
There are sixteen boats in total on the Jungle Cruise, each with a different name. Supposedly, the boats were named after the original cast members that operated the ride when it first opened. The names are: Amazon Annie, Bomokandi Bertha, Congo Connie, Ganges Gertie, Irrawaddy Irma, Kwango Kate, Mongala Millie, Nile Nellie, Orinoco Ida, Rutshuru Ruby, Sankuru Sadie, Senegal Sal, Ucayali Lolly, Volta Val, Wamba Wanda, and Zambezi Zelda.
Close to the exit of the Jungle Cruise, is "Shrunken Neds Junior Jungle Boats" - small radio controlled boats which can be piloted for a few minutes for the cost of a couple of coins. Note that the radio controlled boats are one of the few things within the park that for some reason aren't covered by the entrance passes.
Walt Disney based the Jungle Cruise on the film "The African Queen" and scenes from his "True Life Adventure Series" that first appeared in the 1950's. The original design called for live animals, but it was determined that most animals would be asleep during the day and not visible to guests.
Giant butterflies can be found on the Amazon. Their wing spans can grow from twelve inches all the way up to a whopping one foot!
Jungle Cruise boats at Walt Disney World have axles and wheels on the bottom that are in a guide trough, so no steering is required, but most skippers spin the wheel for show. Skippers control the speed and direction (forward and reverse) of the boat.
Trips are approximately 10 minutes in length, but can last up to a week, so be sure to bring plenty of provisions. Boats can hold 31 guests--in the first layer.
The Jungle Cruise was the featured attraction at Disneyland in California when it opened in 1955. It has been revamped many times over the years--most recently the river was diverted slightly to accommodate the Indiana Jones Adventure attraction, and the original boats were replaced with larger ones of a new design.
If it is raining when you board the boat, don't worry. It is magical Disney water. When you sit down, it will disappear. Keep sliding forward on the cushions as you enter--that's how we keep the cushions clean.
Walt Disney World's Jungle Cruise opened with the Magic Kingdom park on October 1, 1971. Every Disney theme park has a Jungle Cruise, with the exception of Disneyland Paris.
The original Disneyland Jungle Cruise featured educational commentary by the skippers. Over time humorous ad-libs were added, and they stuck. Today's Jungle Cruise has a recommended spiel, and many skippers still throw in a few--or a lot--of ad-lib jokes.