The Disneyland Railroad is a unique and wonderful part of Disney history. It was Walt’s love of trains that eventually led to Disneyland itself, and these classic steam locomotives are still a treasured icon of the Happiest Place on Earth.
While construction is underway on the upcoming Star Wars Land, the railroad track is under some renovation and changes, meaning the classic experience we’ve enjoyed since 1955 is unavailable to guests. The good thing is the park has created some great experiences around the trains that allow guests to still experience these classic attractions in a whole new way.
Parked at both the Main Street Station and the Frontierland/New Orleans Square Station are two of the Disneyland Railroad’s locomotives, but instead of getting “All Aboard,” guests can get up close and personal! On a recent visit it was great to get closer to the train than one can normally do, seeing the bells and whistles up close.
In addition, walking on the other side of the track, where the telegraph has been relaying Walt’s opening day speech for years, is another big treat. Disney has set up experiences much like what is available for kids throughout Epcot as well, with details on the history of the telegraph (Walt would love this salute to American history) as well as a sample telegraph from Mickey Mouse himself.
While there’s nothing quite like the classic attraction, one of my favorites and my usual “first” attraction of a visit to the original Magic Kingdom, I love getting up close, talking to the conductors, and hearing the history of these true icons of Disney history. Kids will love it too, and a it’s a great break from the hustle and bustle of a busy day in the Park.
This is the kind of thing that Disney can do better than anyone, and it’s great to see them put the time into making what could be a missed opportunity into a giant, Walt-sized, win.