Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom "New Fantasyland"

UPDATE: January 13, 2012 *Brand new aerial construction photos are now in our ARIAL PHOTOS GALLERY. Sadly, the original Dumbo ride has been closed for good :( and you can see the "Dumbos" are being carefully removed to be refurbished and moved to their new home in Storybook Circus. Brand new Dumbos are being installed on the new spinner closest to the Tomorrowland Speedway and there is huge progress going on in that area as it it scheduled to open in "about a month". The massive rock work on both Belle's and Ariel's areas is moving along and you can now follow the lay of the land in the new "Fantasyland Forest". The new tent structures are now beginning to get closed in and the "Seven Dwarfs Mine Coaster" foundation work is growing. Oh, and in case you didn't notice, I'm getting excited! Thanks again Scott for your wonderful contributions!


UPDATE: December 6, 2011 *Brand new aerial construction photos are now in our AREAL PHOTOS GALLERY. The first new Dumbo spinner in in and looks like it's ready for some shiny new Dumbos while the first signs of roof color appear on the circus building. The Great Goofini coaster is in plain sight waiting for new themed scenery and you'll see the beginnings of the Casey Jr. water fun area. Some strange square footings for ??? being constructed inside the stripped down circus tents. Belle's village is really coming along well with some new bridges constructed, ground rock work going in and you can begin to see the lay of the land. The area in front of the Little Mermaid attraction it also taking shape with water areas being formed and brides being constructed. And finally you can also see the site work for the 7 Dwarfs Mine Coaster in the middle of all the action.


UPDATE: October 13, 2011 *We've posted some new aerial photos high above Fantasyland. It shows ho much progress has taken place. New Dumbo is very well developed and the new castle wall sections are progressing. You can see them and more on out AREAL PHOTOS GALLERY.


UPDATE: August 20, 2011 *Here's some new videos released at this year's D23 Expo showing off the Fantasyland model and the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Coaster.

Computer rendering of part of the Mine Train ride experience. Looks awesome!

Updated Story Book Circus Concept Art:

UPDATE: August 8, 2011 *Take a look at these brend new arial photos showing the latest progress taking place in the Fantasyland expansion area.


UPDATE: August 1, 2011 *Take a look at these arial photos showing the progress taking place in the Fantasyland expansion area as of mid July 2011.


UPDATE: July 12, 2011 *"Under the Sea; Journey of the Little Mermaid" is the official name (for now) of this long awaited attraction slated for a 2012 opening in Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom. Here is the latest concept art and some photos of the scale model from a video released just yesterday by Disney Imagineers. Click the images for a larger version.

You can see that the final model differs slightly from the early concept art, but the use of rock work & scenery is still enormous.

Lots of water features - appropriate.

Approaching the attraction.

Well themed ride load area (Omnimover)

Interactive cue.

Imagineer working on the highly detailed scale model.

Some great views of the interior scenes of the scale model.

The Official Attraction Logo!

The Track and Scene Layout!

UPDATE: February 11, 2011 *See the new concept art for "Ariel's Undersea Adventure" (California version) to the right. This is the "Under the Sea" scene which promises to have the entire family singing along. If you take a look at the Disney California Adventure page, you can see some photos of this scene currently being installed in the DCA version of this ride, scheduled to open Summer 2011.


UPDATE: January 18, 2011 *Disney Parks and Resorts has confirmed the changes that have been rumored to the Fantasyland expansion. Now tagged as "New Fantasyland, 2012", here's the changes to the expansion that have been confirmed so far:

  • Goofy's Barnstormer will be rethemed to "The Great Goofini" and you will be invited to "Come Fly With..."
  • The evolving Dumbo ride will be graced with 2 new ride carousels and the next gen interactive waiting area will be under the big-top as the area will be called "Storybook Circus".
  • Sadly confirmed is that "Snow White's Scary Adventure" will be going away for good to make way for a large princess meet & greet titled "Princess Fairytale Hall" and will feature most of Disney's beloved Princesses, both classic and modern day.
  • And the big rumor, which has resurfaced many times over the years, is now confirmed to be a part of the New Fantasyland! Yes it's "The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train" which will feature animatronic characters from one of the most pivitol films in history with some cool ride vehicles which will swing around when it hits a turn! Disney states: "The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train will take you on a rollicking, musical ride into the mine “where a million diamonds shine.” The coaster will feature a first-of-its kind ride system with a train of ride vehicles that swing back and forth as they whisk along the track. The journey will be accompanied by music from the classic Disney film and animated figures of Snow White and the Dwarfs."

Notice the changes to the central area and "The Judge's Tent" is back in the photo.

Fly with the Great Goofini!

Princess Fairytale Hall

Storybook Circus.

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train!

January 17, 2011 Press Release:

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The largest expansion in Magic Kingdom history is underway, a project that will nearly double the size of Fantasyland and deliver a new home for Ariel, new ways to interact with favorite Disney princesses, an exciting new family coaster, a double dose of Dumbo and more.


Scheduled to open in phases beginning in late 2012, the new Fantasyland will immerse guests in Disney stories as never before. Among the highlights planned:


Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid, a major, all-new attraction during which guests will travel with Ariel and her friends through their exciting adventures above and below the waves – all against a musical backdrop of songs from the classic film.


The castle of the Beast, standing majestically upon a hill just across an old stone bridge from Ariel’s new home. The Be Our Guest Restaurant will feature a lavish dining experience in the elegant ballroom, gallery, and mysterious “West Wing” of the castle. With seating for 550, this magnificent facility will offer “great food fast” service by day and full table service dining in the evening. Nearby in Belle's Village, guests will find the rousing Gaston’s Tavern and Bonjour! Village Gifts.


• Just outside the village is Belle’s cottage and Enchanted Tales with Belle. The adventure begins in Maurice’s workshop, where a magical mirror is the doorway to a captivating new kind of storytelling experience: Guests are transported to the Beast’s library to meet Belle and Lumiere, and share in a lively, interactive, re-telling of the “tale as old as time.”


But that’s just the beginning of what guests will discover when the multi-phase project is completed. Here’s more of what’s in store:


The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train will take guests on a rollicking, musical ride into the mine “where a million diamonds shine.” The coaster will feature a first-of-its kind ride system with a train of ride vehicles that swing back and forth, responding to every twist and turn of the track. The journey will be accompanied by music from the classic Disney film and animated figures of Snow White and the Dwarfs.


• In Princess Fairytale Hall, Aurora, Cinderella and other Disney princesses, such as Tiana and Rapunzel, will greet guests in their new home, an elegant royal court on the site where Snow White’s Scary Adventures stands today.


• The sound of the calliope will lead guests to the brand new Storybook Circus and not one but two circling carousels of airborne pachyderms on Dumbo the Flying Elephant. Before taking to the skies on this Fantasyland favorite, guests can experience an array of fun-filled family games and interactive wonders for kids of all ages inside the Big Top.


• Next door in Storybook Circus, the classic Barnstormer gets a bright new look as well, featuring Goofy as The Great Goofini. It’s a twisting, turning roller coaster “flight” high above the circus fun.

UPDATE: August 13, 2010

*Disney Parks and Resorts chairman Tom Staggs confirmed that the rumors of revision to the Fantasyland expansion are in fact true. As reported, Disney is looking to broaden the appeal beyond little girls. He stated the the princess meets will not be as announced, "but the appeal will still be there". Seems to kind of hint at a possible additional ride, but that's just my take. Read it here at the Orlando Sentinel.

The buzz for the Fantasyland Makeover... IS TRUE! This HUGE multi-year makeover of the entire Fantasyland has been green-lit and officially announced by Jay Rasulo at an exciting press conference at the first D23 Expo 9/12/09.

Here’s an excerpt from Disney's official press release:


"For Walt Disney World in Florida, Rasulo outlined plans for the largest expansion in the history of the Magic Kingdom, vastly increasing the size of Fantasyland by 2013. Guests will soon be able to:


  • Visit their favorite Disney Princess in her castle, cottage, or chateau to share a dance with Cinderella; celebrate Sleeping Beauty's birthday with the Good Fairies; or join Belle in an enchanting story performance in the Beast's castle library.
  • Be Our Guest and dine in one of three enchanted rooms inside the Beast's castle.```Fly with Dumbo high above brand new circus grounds, twice the size of the existing attraction with a new interactive, three-ring circus tent.
  • Journey under the sea with Ariel, The Little Mermaid, in her very own attraction - also opening at Disney's California Adventure in Anaheim in 2011.
  • Meet Tinker Bell and her friends in the magical world of Pixie Hollow."

Here's our take based on a recent satellite photo and the "leaked" site plan:

You can see the Speedway to the right, with Mickey's Toontown Fair above it. To the left of TTF you can see the filled in 20K Leagues lagoon with the little space carved out for the Thousand Acre Woods playground. Just to the left, you then see Dumbo with the Carousel to the lower left of Dumbo and the Castle below. Now compare that to the drawing below and you'll see some major changes.

In this "leaked" drawing below, it seems that Dumbo and Pixie Hollow are reversed and I am told that the renderings are the accurate plans. let's start in the reverse order. In the lower left, you see the carousel - a good reference point as I am told it will remain in place. To the upper right, where Dumbo "was", you see a castle wall which will be the new entrance to the expanded Fantasyland.


Ariel's Grotto goes away to make room for the newly expanded Beauty & Beast section which will house a "Story time with Belle", a large "Be Our Guest" restaurant, Gaston's Tavern and some themed shops. To the right, Ariel takes up the rest of the old lagoon with a themed land and the long awaited Voyage of the Little Mermaid along with a Meet & greet & a King Triton's Carousel.

The upper right corner, where Mickey's Toon Town Fair currently lives will be home to two Dumbo rides with a new interactive cue. As stated above, this is most likely Pixie Hollow's new home. I am told that the Train Station will receive a circus treatment tied into Dumbo. Below the new dual Dumbo’s is the relocated Pixie Hollow where you will find a larger than life play area, a meet & greet and of course, me (trying to steal a kiss from my beloved Tink!) Goofy's Barnstormer strangely sits in it original place, but will be re-themed to fit in with the new Fantasyland. I thought that this may become the rumored 7 dwarfs mine coaster, but I am told that it is not so.


OK, moving back, to the left of Pixie Hollow, Aurora has a home with a meet & greet and attraction, just above the current Pooh playground, which stays in place. Speaking of Pooh, it looks like his very popular ride will get a new cue treatment similar to the well themed line in California with some nice planted pathways. Finally, in the heart of the new Fantasyland, Cinderella has an area of her own (A castle was just not good enough) with her own themed attraction and a meet & greet.

Architectural Site Plan of the Fantasyland Expansion!

This is the gorgeous concept art introduced at D23 Expo!

The New "Dual" Dumbo will have an Interactive 3-Ring Circus as its cue! Guests will receive a colored feather upon entering the circus tent. Instead of "waiting", guests will be entertained and play interactive games or even relax on the bleachers. When your feather color is called, you board the Dumbo ride. Ingenious Disney creativity!

Ariel's Grotto and the new Ariel's Adventure E-Ticket attraction. While the exterior will be grander and much differently themed than its California sibling (under construction Now Open at Disney's California Adventure - DCA), the ride itself will be identical.

Celebrate Sleeping Beauty's birthday in her chateau. Guests can make birthday cards and help her fairy godmothers prepare for the party. THIS SLEEPING BEAUTY EXPERIENCE WAS LATER CANCELED.

Watch Cinderella transform from the servant of her step family into her beautiful ball outfit and join in the celebration. Boys will be trained to become part of the royal guard. THIS CINDERELLA EXPERIENCE WAS LATER CANCELED.

Join Belle in her village for fun, storytelling, shopping and dining. Enjoy quick serve fair with a masculine flair in Gaston's Pub or dine in one of three highly themed rooms in Beast's castle in the much awaited "Be Our Guest" restaurant. Be Our Guest will be a quick serve location for lunch and transform into an exciting table service dining experience for dinner. Start making those ADR's!!!

The final phase of the expansion, set to open in 2013, will be Mike's new home... I mean Tinkerbell's new home called "Pixie Hollow". Shrink down to the size of a pixie in a land with towering grass and flowers. Tink will be joined by her fairy friends in a beautiful new meet and greet area. You'll be sure to find Mike there gazing into his true love's eyes (until his wife hits him over the head with a light saber). PIXIE HOLLOW WAS LATER CANCELED!

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