Inside Disney’s new Guardians of the Galaxy ride
HOW it all began: “Welcome to the wonders of the Xandar Pavilion!”
How it works: A wild ride through the cosmos in the company of these hilarious Guardians Of The Galaxy.
But I should have known. Disney doesn’t make run-of-the-mill rides, so their latest attraction has likely always been spectacular.
And so it turned out. Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is the attraction and Walt Disney World’s Epcot Park in Orlando is the setting for this blockbuster ride that offers a one-of-a-kind roller coaster experience.
With Volume 3 of the blockbuster Marvel superhero film series only coming out in May 2023, fans of Star-Lord, Groot, Rocket and co. can get their fill of galaxy-saving excitement with this all-new escapade.
It’s billed as a storyteller coaster, but it’s really a gigantic dive into the world of the Guardians where the Nova Empire’s planet, Xandar, visited Earth.
But instead of a galactic display of peace, love and goodwill for all life forms, opportunity has been hijacked by the evil Eson the Searcher, and chaos ensues.
But don’t worry if you can’t tell your Groot from your Gamora. Opening May 27, this groundbreaking attraction is all about immersive thrills that come thick and fast without scaring Aunt Mabel.
In short, it’s something for the whole family to enjoy and marvel at.
The dimensions of the ride alone are stunning.
Epcot’s iconic Spaceship Earth, the 180-foot-tall “golfball” ride narrated by Dame Judi Dench, would fit four times comfortably in the Guardians Of The Galaxy building.
It would fill the Royal Albert Hall. Twice.
But it has to be big, because this is a galaxy-wide experience, as you’d expect from the epic adventures of these interplanetary heroes.
The queue area alone is a cosmic tour de force, and then the ride delivers the kind of non-stop, action-packed thrills that are the Guardians’ trademark.
Kevin Doxey, set designer for the Disney show, told me, “This is a galactic chase through space and time in the full, hilarious style of Guardians Of The Galaxy.
“It’s going to be fast, it’s going to be hectic and it’s going to be full of humor.”
It also has the ripping musical soundtrack from Star-Lord’s famous mix tape, helping the ride really rock as it blasts through the cosmos.
But the real stars of this show are the cleverly designed ride-on cars, which can twist, turn and pivot as they race, making for a totally original experience within the immensity of a building that only feels like the vastness of space.
FIVE STAR ‘WOW!’
One second you’re facing forward into the clutches of Eson on the huge, all-encompassing screens, and the next you’re shooting backwards, propelled by the forces of the Big Bang (because this is time travel, too).
It’s an absolute five star wow! from start to finish, and you’ll want to ride again and again to take in the wealth of cinematic detail woven into this true roller coaster wonder.
Not overwhelmed by the world of superheroes? Don’t worry, Disney has plenty more to woo visitors as it continues its 50th anniversary celebrations through March 2023.
Cirque du Soleil’s newest show, Drawn To Life, is now on stage at Disney Springs and celebrates the art of animation with the kind of daring acrobatics and breathtaking grace that only Cirque Company can deliver.
More live entertainment is also coming back to life this summer.
Disney World is finally shaking off the last vestiges of the pandemic and returning to its full catalog of captivating set pieces.
In the Magic Kingdom, the daily Festival of Fantasy parade is back in action after a two-year hiatus – complete with a fire-breathing dragon.
And the epic extravagance of the Fantasmic! The nightly finale at Disney Hollywood Studios is revived with a new section dedicated to Disney Princesses Elsa, Mulan and Moana.
FIRE BREATHING DRAGON
Meanwhile, fans of Finding Nemo will be pleased to hear that Animal Kingdom will debut a reimagined version of its awesome musical production dedicated to the little clownfish later this year.
Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond! will incorporate new characters from the film as part of a retelling of the Nemo story.
Epcot will celebrate more than just the Guardians of the Galaxy when its three-year transformation completes in 2023.
Where once the Innoventions plazas for new technologies amused visitors, this part of the park will be resurrected next year as the World Celebration Area, flanked by the new World Discovery (that’s Star-Lord and Co) and World Nature (with a walk-through Moana attraction).
In a nod to Walt Disney himself, the World Celebration will be highlighted by Dreamers Point, a special tribute to the park’s founder, and a series of live entertainment venues that will breathe new life into this central area.
Whether you’re ready to return in 2022 or prefer to wait until 2023, there’s no shortage of Disney magic for the happiest celebration on earth.
Just be ready to save the galaxy once more!
facts and figures
GUARDIANS Of The Galaxy film composer Tyler Bates has created over two HOURS of new music for the attraction.
There are six different soundtrack songs to accompany the ride, including A Flock of Seagulls’ I Ran and Tears For Fears’ Everybody Wants To Rule The World.
The main building covers more than 200,000 square meters and is longer than a soccer field.
In the plaza in front of the ride is a full size Xandarian Starblaster spaceship.
It is the longest fully enclosed ride at a Disney theme park and one of the longest indoor roller coasters in the world.
Disney went on set to film Guardians 3 with the stars including Chris Pratt and Glenn Close to record their roles in the new attraction.
COVID: Fully vaccinated travelers can enter with a negative PCR or lateral flow Covid test taken no more than one day prior to travel.
Children under the age of 17 are exempt from compulsory vaccination, but those who are not fully vaccinated must take a test three to five days after arrival.
Virgin Atlantic Holidays is offering seven nights room only accommodation at Disney’s All Star Resort from £1,609 per person, including Disney tickets and Virgin Atlantic flights departing from Heathrow on 7 September 2022.
See virginholidays.co.uk or 0344 472 9646.
https://www.thesun.ie/travel/8793779/disney-world-guardians-of-the-galaxy-rollercoaster/ Inside Disney’s new Guardians of the Galaxy ride