By: Jersey Diva
photo courtesy of Canadian Diva
Who would have thought while taking a trip to Orlando, Florida one could also take a trip to California? At Epcot, Soarin’ takes you “hang gliding” over the beautiful landscapes of the Golden State. Disney Imagineers went all out bringing California to life. They used an IMAX projection dome and aerially captured footage that reproduces the flight path of a hang-glider. Feel like you’re flying as you are lifted 40 feet in the air plunged in the sensational panoramas, swept from one scenic locale to the next. Imagineers even went one step further allowing you to smell what you are seeing as you graze rolling waves, powdery ski slopes, majestic redwood forests, fragrant orange groves and familiar landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge.
Soarin’ opened, officially, inside “The Land” pavilion on May 5, 2005. Cast members wear costumes that resemble flight attendant costumes. Cast members at the Disney California Adventure Park version wear airfield crew costumes. They do this to make guests feel like they are traveling to California, as opposed to already being there. This idea is further reinforced in that guests are loaded into “gates” and listen to airport-themed spiels which reference “Flight 5505”, which is a tribute to the opening day of the attraction.
While are waiting in line to ride Soarin’, check out the interactive games you can play. State-of-the-art infrared technology allows you to participate in 5 different games on massive screens using your body. The 5 games allow you to train your bird for a race, collect treasures as you pilot a hot-air balloon, “pop the blobs” to reveal a picture or create a virtual landscape by moving mountains and planting seeds. Makes waiting in line fun!
While traveling to Walt Disney World this past December, being 5 months pregnant, there were some rides I could not ride. Soarin’ was not one of them. However, middle Jersey daughter, age 2, could not ride. No worries, Soarin’ has the rider swap option. Jersey family, minus myself, Jersey sister, Jersey daughter and Jersey niece all rode Soarin’ while we waited in the lobby. When they finished, I was able to ride with oldest Jersey daughter and it was amazing to see her in such awe over getting to experience hang-gliding over California.