Walt Disney beloved to journey simply as a lot as he beloved making motion pictures and constructing theme parks. His travels took him all around the world, from the snow-covered Swiss Alps to the elegant shoreline of the French Riviera.
Throughout his time on the street, within the air and at sea, Walt drew inspiration for what would turn out to be one of many world’s most well-known theme parks, Disneyland in Anaheim, California. The park opened its gates in 1955 and went on to encourage the creation of 5 further Disney resorts in Orlando, Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai and Hong Kong.
Listed below are 9 of the real-life locations Walt visited whereas planning and designing Disneyland which you could nonetheless go to at present.
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Walt and his spouse Lillian made frequent visits to New Orleans way back to the Nineteen Forties, purchasing for treasures on the metropolis’s vintage and curio retailers. He was so taken by the Crescent Metropolis that he created a whole space at Disneyland designed to duplicate the structure and vigorous ambiance of the French Quarter.
The mayor of New Orleans was readily available on the dedication of Disneyland’s New Orleans Sq. in 1966 and annointed Walt an honorary citizen of New Orleans.
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At this time, New Orleans Sq. is the place you will discover the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean sights — and, come 2024, the all-new Tiana’s Bayou Journey trip.
Whereas it was not the one inspiration for Sleeping Magnificence Fort, which marks the doorway to Fantasyland at Disneyland, Neuschwanstein citadel within the German Alps was closely influential in its design.
Walt visited Neuschwanstein throughout a household journey to Europe in 1952 and was undoubtedly taken by the citadel’s Romanesque design. Although the unique is extra austere in nature than the whimsical pink-and-blue theme park model, each are among the many hottest vacationer locations of their respective nations.
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Throughout his tour-de-Europe, Walt additionally would have handed via Germany’s Black Forest area, doubtless gaining inspiration for the Bavarian village vibes of sights like Peter Pan’s Flight, Snow White’s Enchanted Want and Pinnochio’s Daring Journey in Fantasyland.
In June of 1951, Walt and his household sailed to Europe on the Queen Mary for an almost two-month journey that included visits to London, Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Rome and Genoa. Whereas in Copenhagen, Walt visited Tivoli Gardens, one of many world’s oldest amusement parks.
Walt was quoted as saying, “It was spotless and brightly coloured and priced inside the attain of everybody … The gaiety of the music, the excellence of the foods and drinks, the nice and cozy courtesy of the workers — all the things mixed for a pleasurable expertise,” in accordance with the Walt Disney Household Museum.
The park’s cleanliness and family-friendly ambiance left a powerful sufficient impression on Walt that he integrated comparable components into his personal park when Disneyland opened 4 years later.
Castillo de San Felipe del Morro
Whereas looking for inspiration for Disneyland’s Pirates of the Caribbean trip in New Orleans Sq., Walt flew in his very personal Gulfstream jet to San Juan, Puerto Rico.
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His in-person have a look at Outdated San Juan and Castillo de San Felipe Del Morro helped to form the ultimate design of the trip, which Walt initially deliberate to be a walk-through attraction. Sadly, Walt by no means noticed the ultimate product, as he died in December 1966, just a few months earlier than the trip opened in March 1967.
Youngsters’s Fairyland is a storybook-themed amusement park in Oakland, California, that has been in operation since 1950, 5 full years earlier than Disneyland opened. Walt could have visited the park greater than as soon as, however there may be at the very least one documented go to in Might of 1954, when Disneyland was below improvement.
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Walt doubtless noticed sights themed to Alice and Wonderland and Peter Pan, each of which now have their very own variations at Disneyland. He was so impressed with the park that he employed the Youngsters’s Fairyland’s director and chief puppeteer onto the workers at Disneyland.
Founder’s Park in Anaheim, California, is situated solely two miles from Disneyland. On the park, a big Moreton Bay fig tree has been offering shade to the world for greater than 100 years. Additionally it is extensively believed that the tree offered a little bit of inspiration for Disneyland’s Swiss Household Treehouse (now the Tarzan Treehouse).
There is not a lot proof to show that the tree absolutely impressed Walt to construct the Swiss Household Treehouse, however there may be documentation that workers members who labored on the attraction, and presumably Walt himself, photographed the tree and took recently-trimmed branches to form particulars of the Disneyland tree, in accordance with Orange County historian Chris Jepsen in a narrative for Yesterland.
Griffith Park in Los Angeles was presumably extra influential within the creation of Disneyland than every other vacation spot on this listing. Griffith Park is credited as being the spot the place Walt dreamt up the concept for Disneyland.
Because the story is commonly advised, Walt used to take his daughter to Griffith Park on the weekends for “Daddy’s day.” Whereas they had been going spherical and spherical on the merry-go-round and he was consuming peanuts on a park bench, he “felt there needs to be one thing constructed the place the mother and father and the youngsters might have enjoyable collectively,” in accordance with the Disney Parks Weblog.
At this time at Disneyland, you may view one of many unique carousel horses from the Griffith Park merry-go-round and the famed park bench the place the concept for Disneyland was born; each are situated within the foyer of the Nice Moments With Mr. Lincoln attraction.
Walt moved to Marceline, Missouri, in 1906 on the age of 4, and lived there till 1910, when his household moved to Kansas Metropolis, Missouri.
Walt thought-about Marceline to be his hometown and sometimes spoke of his blissful childhood reminiscences there. The look of Principal Avenue, U.S.A., nevertheless, shouldn’t be meant to replicate any specific city. Somewhat, its design displays an idyllic turn-of-the-century Principal Avenue the place everybody feels at house.
Whereas Marceline’s Principal Avenue would not look very like Disneyland’s Principal Avenue, U.S.A., the city did play a major position in Walt’s life throughout his formative childhood years and the sensation of magic and nostalgia he needed to evoke at his theme park.
Walt’s first go to to the Matterhorn within the city of Zermatt, Switzerland, got here in 1952 throughout a household trip to Europe. He fell so in love with the surroundings that he returned the next summer season and filmed the 1959 film “Third Man on the Mountain” there just a few years later.
Whereas visiting the filming location in 1958, Walt’s fascination with the Matterhorn impressed him to construct an attraction based mostly on it: the Matterhorn Bobsleds curler coaster at Disneyland.
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The coaster model is precisely 100 occasions shorter than the 14,700-foot-tall mountain peak.
Walt’s affect might be seen at each Disney park all over the world, however Disneyland is the one park Walt lived to see via to fruition. As a result of it is the one park the place you may “stroll in Walt’s footsteps,” it holds a particular place within the hearts of Disney followers.
Simply as particular, although, is visiting any of those inspirational locations across the globe that formed Walt’s plans for his unique park.