Whether you’re a regular visitor or are preparing for your first ever visit, Walt Disney World is an incredible vacation destination filled with endless possibilities and pixie dust.
For over 50 years, Disney World has brought magic, imagination, and happiness to their guests. In honor of Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary, discover 10 weird and wonderful things about the most magical place on earth.
Walt Disney World Resort is huge
Of all the Disney parks and resorts, it is Walt Disney World Resort, which is the largest. The site covers 30,500 acres, making it approximately the same size as San Francisco. Not only is this the largest of the Disney theme parks and resorts, it is also the most visited.
About the price of a bottle of water these days
When Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park first opened its doors on October 1, 1971. Adult admission cost $3.50. and only included 7 attractions. The opening day crowd was approximately 10,000 guests.
Magic Kingdom’s Underground Tunnels
Walt Disney World has a vast network of “utilidor” tunnels under the park that have allowed costumed employees to move throughout the Magic Kingdom without being detected by guests. The nine-acre tunnel complex beneath the Magic Kingdom also connects locker rooms, dining halls, rehearsal spaces, and ATMs. The tunnel walls are color-coded so cast members can easily know where they are.
The tunnels connect the park’s themed lands in a circular route from Adventureland and Fantasyland to Liberty Square and Tomorrowland. At the center lies Main Street U.S.A., which leads to two offshoot tunnels that lead straight to Frontierland and Fantasyland.
The American flags at Disney World are fake
Because real American flags must follow the national flag code, such as flying at half-mast during times of mourning and taking them down at night. The flags at Disney were purposefully made to be missing a stripe or a star. That makes the flags pennants, allowing Disney to not worry about flag etiquette.
The Tree of Life at the Animal Kingdom was built over an oil rig
The man-made Tree of Life at the Animal Kingdom was built over a retrofitted 14-story oil rig. The 145-foot creation is covered with more than 100,000 leaves that are each more than a foot long. The tree’s trunk is made of concrete, not wood. There are over 102,000 leaves of five different shades of green. These leaves were attached by hand to over 8,000 branches!
Nothing over 200ft
There are no buildings in Walt Disney World that are taller than 200 feet. Disney did this deliberately since buildings 200 feet and higher must be adorned with flashing lights for airline safety.
About 12% of Walt Disney World is dedicated to gardens or green space. That’s about 4,000 acres or the equivalent of 3,000 football fields.
Disney’s gardeners plant more than 3 million flowers and maintain about 2 million shrubs, 200 topiaries, and 13,000 roses throughout the property.
Lots of Cast Members
There are 77,000 Cast Members throughout the Disney World resort, which makes it the biggest single-site employer in the United States.
Lots of Hotels
There are currently 36 resorts at WDW, including nine Disney Vacation Club properties. 26 of the resort hotels on Disney World property are actually owned and operated by Walt Disney World Resort itself. In total, Disney World has over 30,000 hotel rooms, 409 wilderness cabins, 799 campsites, and 3,293 Disney Vacation Club units.
Disney’s Pop Century Resort has the most guest rooms of any Disney World Resort (2,880 rooms).
Lots of Food
Walt Disney World has over 300 dining outlets with a staff of 350 chefs. Every year, Disney World serves 10 million hamburgers, 6 million hot dogs, 9 million pounds of French fries, 300,000 pounds of popcorn, and 1.6 million turkey drumsticks.