Puns are the most revered form of humor in my family. I’m not sure what that says about us, but it’s true nonetheless. Joseph has inherited the pun-appreciating gene and he and my sister, Sandy, are the undisputed family champions. This love for all things pun-ny has a lot to do with our love for The Jungle Cruise in Magic Kingdom’s Adventureland! If you consider the Skipper on every boat a comedic artist – The Pun is their medium of choice. And that is, after all, what makes The Jungle Cruise special and unique – the quality of the entire experience depends solely on the talent of the Skipper and their ability to deliver their pun-intensive dialogue with just the right timing!
Just a couple of weeks ago, we rode the Jungle Cruise at Walt Disney World and Skipper Jeff (who was excellent) reminded us once again why this ride is charming, classic, and SO darned funny (well, to this family anyway). I love every single thing about it!
Here are my favorite things about the Jungle Cruise, an Adventureland classic!
1. While waiting in line, guests are treated to both sight gags (on the walls, overhead, on standing crates and cages) and sound gags. As you get closer to the boarding area, you can watch the boats (they have cute names) come in and go out.
2. The design of the boats was based on the steamer in the movie African Queen (one of my all time favorites!). While you wait, listen carefully to the announcements! The dock manager’s notices over the P.A. set the tone for the rest of the experience.
“Any travelers who may need to exchange foreign currency during their voyage needn’t worry. There are banks all along our rivers.” – Jungle Cruise Dock Announcer
3. Once you board your boat, you’ll meet your skipper and set off on your journey around the world (along famous rivers). Here’s where this attraction will capture your heart! Yes, the jokes are cheesy! Yes, the animals are fake! Be ready to embrace the experience in the spirit it was intended – not to impress and delight, but to charm and entertain. To truly appreciate all the Jungle Cruise has to offer, you must be willing to give both the skipper’s dialogue and your surroundings your complete and undivided attention!
4. The scenery is a masterpiece of real plants and totally fabricated situations. In caves, floating along quiet pools, among ruins, viewing the backside of water! The Disney details (like the puns) are plentiful!!! Pay attention to the plane wreck – you’ll see only half the plane. Why? Because the other half (the front) is over in the Studios in the Great Movie Ride! Do you know what scene it’s in?
“We’re in the Amazon in South America, where things grow larger than life, such as the butterflies on our left and on our right. Their wingspans grow from 12 inches to a whopping 1 foot!” – Jungle Cruise Skipper
“See my jeep? I had a little trouble getting it started this morning, but I don’t know how they got it to turn over… oh well.” – Jungle Cruise Skipper (The jeep has been turned upside down…get it?!?)
5. The jokes just keep coming, the adorable animal animatronics surround you, the skipper guides the boat along the river until you’re back at the dock once more – Friends, this is Disney at its finest! Some famous people got their start as Jungle Cruise skippers – Kevin Costner and John Lasseter among them. Yes! Even Weird Al Yankovic sang a song about the Jungle Cruise called “Skipper Dan” – check it out on YouTube here.