By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2017, from the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever. Paperback available on Amazon here. Kindle version available on Amazon here. PDF version available on Gumroad here.—Disney World Instructions for the First-Time Visitor

Preview: Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid at the Magic Kingdom

By Dave Shute


Business took me to Southern California in earlier November, so I had the chance to ride Ariel’s Undersea Adventure at the Disneyland Resort.

This ride is basically identical to what will be opening in late 2012 as Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid, part of the Magic Kingdom’s Fantasyland expansion.

I was curious if the ride was enough of a powerhouse to be a good reason for people to frame their trips around its opening, or for me to have to change my itineraries.

The short answer: nope.


Without giving away the details, Ariel’s Undersea Adventure is a short re-showing of key scenes from The Little Mermaid.

Younger fans of the movie will love it. 

Everyone else will likely find it colorful and fun, but not particularly special. This is definitely not an “E” Ticket ride–it’s more like a “C” or a “D.”

It’s charming and loaded with Ariel, including some nice allusions to the effects of traditional Disney “dark rides” like Snow White’s Scary Adventures.

But in all honesty there’s not a lot to it, and it’s not worth framing your travel dates around its opening.




1 Karen { 01.21.12 at 1:02 am }

My sons/girlfriends, 3 granddaughters (ages 2, 3, 4) will be visiting last week in April. We’re staying off Disney property but will be going two days to Magic Kingdom or Hollywood Studios. I made a reservation for Chef Mickey’s breakfast buffet. Do we have to go to Magic Kingdom the same day or can we have breakfast, and visit Magic Kingdom another day? Trying to get a lot in on our 7 days. Also, my 4 year old granddaughter is anxious to see Woody from Toy Story. He is only at Hollywood Studios?

2 Dave { 01.21.12 at 2:39 pm }

Hi Karen! Chef Mickey’s is in a hotel outside the park, so it has no effect on what park you might visit. Re Woody, according to The Complete Walt Disney World 2012 you can also find him in the Magic Kingdom in Frontierland

3 JULIE { 04.07.12 at 8:24 pm }

Hi Dave, I love your site. My family of 4 is going to Disney World from Oct 12-22. Planning on spending 6- 7 days at Disney parks, maybe a day or 2 at a Beach as we are from Iowa and beaches are a little scarce around here. We are not staying on site but close by. My question is If we arrive on a Friday, What park do you think we should start at? We are also hoping to get tickets for Mickeys not so scarey Halloween Party, what night in your opinon would be the best. Thanks so much for all you do, Your site has been a blessing for me. It has been a Dream of my husband and I to take our kids who will be 13, and 7 to Disney

4 Dave { 04.08.12 at 12:58 pm }

Hi Julie, and glad the site has helped!

It looks like the Halloween party will be on a lot during your visit–see this I’d shoot for the 16th or 18th.

First nights are good at Epcot–see this:

Hope this helps and have a great trip!

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