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Disneyland Tournament Winner – Best Disneyland Resort Ride Announced

We are very excited to announce the winner of The DisInsider’s Ultimate Disneyland Resort Tournament of Rides.

After six weeks of voting in six rounds, 51 head to head matchups, and 170,144 votes, the winner of the tournamet is: Pirates of the Caribbean.

The result of the Championship Round was Pirates of the Caribbean 56% Haunted Mansion 44%.

This pirate-themed “shoot the chute” attraction opened in Disneyland in 1967 in the New Orleans Square section of the park. The ride was not an opening day attraction, debuting twelve years after the park opened, however it is still considered a Disneyland classic. While Walt Disney had passed prior to the grand opening, he was alive for the concept and development, along with overseeing much of its construction. One of the last attractions in Disneyland that Walt Disney had direct and meaningful contact with prior to his death.

The overwhelming love for the ride is due to many factors, including: the ride’s accessibility with young childre, teens, adults, and seniors, the vast scope of storytelling which allows every ride to bring new storytelling, the timeless music, the amazing animatronics, the mixture of whimsy and violence, the impeccable costuming, and the ride’s classic gags, such as the dog with the key, the octopus draped in jewels, and the drunken man on the bridge with the dirty foot.

Aside from the technical and artistic achievements within the ride, one of the most attractive attributes of Pirates of the Caribbean is it’s ability to keep the line moving by loading a large number of guests at a very fast rate. In fact, the ride has the highest ride capacity in the park and can move over 3,000 guests an hour through the ride. For comparison, Splash Mountain’s guest per hour rate is around 1,900 and Peter Pan’s Flight is 575.

While the Pirates of the Caribbean ride in the Magic Kingdon at Walt Disney World is undoubtably a fan favorite, it is not held to the level that the Disneyland version finds itself. While anyone can guess what the reasons might be, I think Disney Imagineer Tony Baxter explained it best, “The Pirate ride in Florida has never garnered the same mystique as the one in California. And I’m convinced that there’s a level of removal that goes on as you descend deeper and deeper into this dreamlike state where finally at the last, lowest level it all comes to life. The chartacters are there, alive and so forth. In Florida you just put your packages away, you cast off, and – boom – you’re in the city. Then, while you’re still in there, struggling with the pirates and the prison, you hear the girl on the intercom saying, ‘Ladies and gentleman, please stand and exit to your right.’ It’s rather jarring to be asked to leave when there are people dying in the cell next to you. So I don’t think it’s ever connected. And the romance of the Blue Bayou is gone and all those things that really help to set this one up.”

No one knows what exactly makes it magical, we just know that it is magical.

Now that we know which ride is considered the best within the Disneyland Resort, the next question is, when will we be able to experience this attraction again? From what we are seeing with the easing of restrictions, covid cases dropping, and vaccine distribution ramping up, the park may be opening up sooner than many of us expected even a month ago. Stick with The DisInsider as we cover all of the news surrounding the reopening of Disneyland.

Thank you to everyone for voting! The turnout, 170,144 votes, was beyond anyone’s expectations. It was a lot of work but it was also a lot of fun.

We will be doing another large, multi round, Disney themed, bracket-style tournament shortly. The next one will not be the Best Rides in Walt Disney World, as that could lead to some confusion from casual voters who would be confused why they are voting on rides again. That one will take place later in Spring, we will announce the next tournament shortly, stay tuned. And remember, Dead Men Tell No Tales.

One final note, all of here at The DisInsider are huge fans of the Disney Parks and we love all of the rides, shows, shops, and restaurants within these parks. Countless hours of hard work from the most brilliant and creative minds in the world have brought us all immeasurable joy and entertainment. This tournament was done simply for fun and is not meant to imply that any attraction is not worthy or appreciated. These rides are simply pieces of a whole and the whole could never stand without every piece, small and large.

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