On October 23, 2013, Disney announced that The World-Famous Jungle Cruise would be getting a holiday makeover at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Disney Parks Blog announced that the seasonal changes would include a new plot described as, “The Skippers have grown homesick for the holidays, so they’ve added holiday cheer to the Jungle Cruise queue and boathouse with decorations that have been mailed to them from home (plus a few they’ve created themselves).” Also mentioned were new boat names, jokes, and a music loop in the boathouse. Disney Parks Blog teased Jungle Cruise fans a few days before opening with a brand new attraction poster and an early glimpse at props. Decorations started to pop up days before the grand opening and on November 8 guests got a chance to take a ride on the ‘Jingle Cruise’.
As you walk up to the entrance, the first noticeable changes include the signs being switched to ‘Jingle Cruise’ and Christmas lights now hang on them. Some Skippers might even don a specially-themed Jungle Cruise Santa cap. The biggest changes come in the queue. A Christmas tree is now standing in the boathouse as you enter and if you look up then you will notice decorative wreaths along with tiny Santa Claus and snowmen props. You will also notice that the radio-loop has changed to holiday music from the 1930s-50s. Albert Awol’s office has been completely transformed with a silver, desktop Christmas tree as well as lights, garland and more. When you get close enough to see the boats, you will instantly see the new boat names and if you look across the river to the shack you will notice it has been adorned with lights and a light-up snowman.
New Boat Names
Amazon Annie → Eggnog Annie
Bomokandi Bertha → Brrrrr Bertha
Congo Connie → Candy Cane Connie
Ganges Gertie → Garland Gertie
Irrawaddy Irma → Icicle Irma
Mongala Millie → Mistletoe Millie
Nile Nellie → Seasonal Rehab
Orinoco Ida → Seasonal Rehab
Rutshuru Ruby → Seasonal Rehab
Sankuru Sadie → Sleigh Ride Sadie
Senegal Sal → Poinsettia Sal
Ucayali Lolly → Yule Log Lolly
Volta Val → Vixen Val
Wamba Wanda → Wassail Wanda
Zambesi Zelda → Fruitcake Zelda
The ride itself has not changed. All of the animals and characters are in the same place as they were before, but a lot of new holiday-themed jokes have been added. A lot of people expected that small changes might be made to the ride, like the Santa hats in the attraction poster, but Disney never mentioned once that changes like that would be made. The new storyline was is just about the Skippers being homesick for Christmas so they decorate. It would make more sense that they would decorate the boathouse and not the jungle itself. Although some extra holiday touches here and there would’ve been nice, the new jokes are actually pretty funny depending on the Skipper that is delivering the line, which is a given on the Jungle Cruise even on a normal day. As time progresses and the Skippers get more comfortable with the new script, the Jingle Cruise should improve, but guests should enjoy it for what it truly is – a new holiday-themed makeover in a park that usually does not recognize the holiday season outside of Main Street U.S.A.
The Good – A new radio loop in the boathouse that includes Bing Crosby and a new joke that finally exposes how truly horrifying Christmas Carolers are.
The Bad – No funny Santa hats on any of the animals and no one seems to know if the ‘Jingle Cruise’ attraction poster is for sale/will be for sale.
Category: Disney World