Pirates of the Caribbean history

Yo ho yo ho a pirates life for me. Very classic line and everyone knows that song but how many people actually know the history of the ride which prompted the idea of the recent Pirates of the Caribbean movies featuring Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow.

Pirates is in four different parks: Disneyland in California, Walt Disney World in Florida, Tokyo Disneyland and Disneyland Park in Paris. The original ride is at Disneyland in California. Walt sadly passed away right before Pirates opened at Disneyland.

Disneyland California:
Pirates was to be a walk through wax museum type of a attraction instead of a boat ride. The ride is located right when you first walk into New Orleans Square. The facade is of the antebellum era featuring the 31 star flag (1850's). When you get to the front of the line you will see a sign over head that says Lafitte's landing which was name for the famous pirate Jean Lafitte. He had fought alongside the US Army at the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812. On the outside you will notice two staircases going up to a landing with a door. This was orignally to be the Disney apartment but he passed before everything was completed. Then the apartment was turned into a Gallery type area then closed in 2007 for the Year of a Million Dream and it became the Disneyland Dream Suite during the celebration.

Once boarded the first scene of the ride is in the Louisiana Bayou admist the glimmering fireflies on the left of the boat and on the right hand side is an actual working resturant named the Blue Bayou which was to be made into a backyard dinner party on a plantation. After floating past the rickety houseboats, the soft strumming of banjo melodies and peaceful sounds of nature you hear from above a archway a talking skull and crossbones taunting guests with this saying:

Psst! Avast there! It be too late to alter course, mateys. And there be plundering pirates lurkin' in ev'ry cove, waitin' to board. Sit closer together and keep your ruddy hands in board. That be the best way to repel boarders. And mark well me words, mateys: Dead men tell no tales! Ye come seekin' adventure with salty old pirates, eh? Sure you've come to the proper place. But keep a weather eye open, mates, and hold on tight. With both hands, if you please. Thar be squalls ahead, and Davy Jones waiting for them what don't obey.

Just as you past under the skull and cross bones you hear a more chilling sound from the darkness: the waterfall. Two plundges later you are now in the depths of an underground grotto known as the Dead Man's Cove. The boats glide gently past a violent thunderstorm that is tossing a old pirate ship.  The boats slowly drift past through a crew's quarters, complete with skeletal pirates frozen in time, the captain examining a treasure map, an old harpsichord playing the theme song, and a huge amount of treasure being guarded by another skeleton pirate. The Aztec chest from Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl sits in the corner of the treasure room and is the the last thing guests see before entering a dark tunnel.

Originally it was to be a pipe organ echoes through the dark tunnel but now a curtain of mist appears with images of Davy Jones and also Blackbeard that are alternately projected onto the mist and invite guests to proceed. First thing that you hear after the invite you hear cannonballs and explosions. You go through a battle between the Wicked Wench and the village.

The villiage is overrun with pirates in the search of the ever wonderous treasure. The first thing that you see when you turn towards the village is the pirates dunking the mayor and insiting that he says where the treasure is located. His wife tells him from a window to be brave and not to talk to them. This is also the first time that you see Captain Jack Sparrow who is hiding behind some dresses. Next is the Take a Wench for a Bride where you see the Red Head.

After this we see pirates running around chasing women holding food and two being chased for taking food. Then you see a pirate sitting on some barrels drunkenly waving a map and key saying that Jack would never see it in fact Jack is right behind him.

Next scene is when pirates are ravaging the town and setting it aflame filling the night with an orange glow. After seeing the town on fire guests will see a group of pirates trying to coax a dog that is holding the key to their freedom.

As you go up the last lift of the ride there are pirates on both sides of the boat firing at each other. Little further up is Jack in a room of treasure. One line he says is that it is dedicated to everyone.



Walt Disney World

When you first approach the attraction is guarded by the Caribbean watchtower Torre del Sol. The attraction is housed in a golden Spanish fort called Castillo Del Morro in Old San Juan.

With this attraction instead of the Blue Bayou it the Pirate's Cove and also a grotto with Blackbear, mermaids swimming in the water and singing, skeletons of dead pirates and mermaids, the hurricane lagoon and also echoing is "Dead men tell no tales". There is no treasure rooms like in the other parks. After one plunge the rest of the ride is similar to Tokyo and California. However unlike in California the riders do not come back to ground level after seeing the last Jack Sparrow scene. Florida riders leave right after this scene.

The exterior of this ride was slightly altered during the 2006 modifications. The changes were the removal of the barker bird and original attraction sign. A new sign was placed on the outside corner facing towards the entrance of Adventureland.

Tokyo Disneyland
This ride is almost identical but it is shorter then the original at Disneyland. It doesn't have the second plunge near the start of the ride. Like California and Florida it was updated to have the movie characters but Paris does not.

Disneyland Park Paris
This ride is the only like that does not have the addition of the characters from the films. The facade of the attraction is of a battle scarred fortress at the very back of the park. 

The line goes through several courtyards before entering the actual fortress. Once inside the queue passes through dungeons and crew's quarters. The line then goes into the Blue Lagoon once in the show building. After getting on the boats guests are sent under a archway and passing by the dining area on the left and a jungle on the right. The boats pass through a shipwreck and enter another old fortress nearby. Once inside gun noises and sword clanking are heard in the back as the boats climb up a large lift hill. At the top guests are shown a brief view of the Wicked Wench pirate ship before entering into the depths of the fort. When inside the flames are engulfing the fort and can see the shadows of fighting pirates and soldiers are seen. 

The boats go down a waterfall through the side of the fort that was caused by a cannon ball. Then entered the relative safety of the town, the guests see all the original scenes from the California version as well as a new pair of sword-fighting men who duel for a girl in the chase scene. For the most part the ride is in French with parts in English. The boats then enter the burning town scene where the original English vocal tracks are present. 

The boats pass under an archway and enter the arsenal. The supplies are ignited by the fire and explode. There is a flashing of lights (as an on-ride photo is taken), and the boats go down another drop into darkness. They emerge into the grotto scenes, passing all the skeleton pirate vintages seen at Disneyland, and a new shipwreck scene. This part of the ride can be seen from the railroad as it passes through the show building (similar to Splash Mountain at the other parks). The skull and crossbones from the original are seen over an archway, issuing a bilingual safety spiel. The boats return to the dock, and riders exit into a themed gift shop where they can purchase their on-ride-photo.(wikipedia.com)


(All info on rides in Flordia, Tokyo, and Paris is from wikipedia.com)

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