Maelstrom being replaced with a Frozen Attraction

Disclaimer… much of what I’m going to state in today’s blogpost is my personal opinion.  Please bear in mind that this is my blog and my place to share my knowledge of Disney, also I get to share my opinion.  It will not be often that I share my opinion, but today is one of those days.

Fact– The Maelstrom Ride in Norway at the World Showcase is being replaced with “Frozen” themed attraction.


Fact- The last day that the Maelstrom ride will be in operation is October 5th, 2014

Fact- The new Frozen attraction is expected to be opened early in 2016 (according to the Disney Park Blog)


Opinion- I believe that when Epcot created the world showcase that the intention was to “showcase” different cultures from around the world.  Disney did an amazing job at keeping these countries authentic as well.  The materials used to build the pavilions were brought in from that country.  The craftsmen who built the pavilions were skilled laborers from that particular country.  The items sold in the countries are imported, and even the cast members who work in the countries are natives of that country.

Norway Pavilion

Norway Pavilion

With all of that being said, I wish that Disney would have stayed true to keeping the world showcase “pure.”  I love walking through the world showcase and being transported to a different country.  I believe that by adding the Disney movie theming in the World Showcase that they’re missing the point.  Maelstrom may be a little bit outdated as a ride, and for heaven’s sake we all know that “The Spirit of Norway” film at the end of the attraction was outdated.  I will agree that the ride and film could have used some updates, BUT I think that making it a Frozen attraction is completely out of line what the World Showcase stands for.

maelstrom boat maelstrom MEP433LARGE

On our most recent trip this summer there were hints of Frozen in the gift shop and the “Old Stave Church,” and to me that was tolerable. I didn’t mind that there was merchandise, and I can understand Disney giving the kids something in the country that their favorite movie is set in.  But to me I almost dread going to the Norway Pavilion in 2016.  I now know that there will be a ridiculous line to meet Anna and Elsa, and I know that the ride isn’t going to even remotely be about the history and culture of Norway, but about another Disney movie.  Disney was thinking about the $$$ not the preservation of one of the most brilliant sections of their parks.

I won’t be offended if you disagree with me, as long as you’re not offended by my opinion 🙂

Park Day 5- Back to Epcot

Okay, normally I like to have a day off in between parks, but it didn’t fall like that on this vacation.  So today we are going to sleep in a little bit, head to Downtown Disney for a more relaxed morning, and then head back to Epcot this afternoon.

downtown disney

7:45- Wake up and Run 6 miles

9:15- Split Quick service breakfast and Snack at resort food court

10:00- Downtown Disney, last minute shopping and ride character’s in flight

12:00- Lunch at downtown disney or resort

2:00- Arrive at Epcot

2:10- Fast pass for Test Track

3:15- Fast Pass for “The Seas with Nemo and Friends”

5:00- Fast Pass for Character Spot photos

5:45- Dinner at La Hacienda de San Angel

8:15- Find a good spot to watch Illuminations

9:00- Illuminations

9:20- Wind Down at “Tutto Gusto”

11:00- Return to Resort

Extra Magic Hours- Today’s Extra Magic Hours are at the Animal Kingdom.  We decided that Animal Kingdom is not a park we wanted to visit a second time on this trip.  Loving Epcot as much as we do, it was an easy choice to visit here again, plus without having extra magic hours, it was a good excuse to sleep in a little and get some shopping done!

What new experiences will we encounter today-  Both of the new experiences we will have today are dining related.  We are eating at La Hacienda de San Angel and participating in Wind Down.

What is Wind Down?- Wind Down is an extra paid experience available on select nights at Epcot.  After Illuminations guests with reservations can head to one of three of the “lounges” where they can experience beverage flights and small plate entrees. We decided to do this #1 because it’s something we’ve never done before, and #2 we are looking forward to experiencing the park with very few guests in it.  There will be even fewer guests than during extra magic hours because its based on reservations.  Craig is really looking forward to doing nighttime photography with no one in the parks 🙂

Park Day #3- EPCOT

Yay, Yay, Yay!!!!!!!! Today we are going to Epcot, my favorite park 🙂

2010 Trip to Epcot

2010 Trip to Epcot

6:30- Wake up and run 3 miles

8:00- Split Quick Service Breakfast and Snack at resort

8:45- Depart for Epcot

10:05- Fast Pass for Spaceship Earth

11:05- Fast pass for Test Track

12:00- Lunch (Split a Quick service meal, probably in the world showcase… our favorite place to eat!)

1:25- Fast pass for Maelstrom

2:00- Return to the resort for a nap and swimming

5:00- Return to Epcot

6:05- Dinner at the Biergarten restaurant

9:00-11:00- Extra Magic Hours

11:30- Return to Resort and SLEEP!


What we plan to do during Extra Magic Hours– We will not be watching Illuminations on this day.  We will be back to Epcot in only 2 days, and have decided to watch illuminations on that day.  We will try to catch some of the attractions like Soarin, or Test Track that have really long lines during peak hours.  We figured that Illuminations starts at 9pm and many people will be around the World Showcase Lagoon watching it, reducing the wait times.

What we are going to do that we’ve never done before- We have been to Epcot more than any other Disney park, basically because we LOVE the world showcase.  First off, we’ve never eaten at the Biergarten restaurant, so that will be a fun new treat for us!  We will also be checking out the “Ellen’s Energy Adventure” at the Universe of Energy pavilion, and the “Journey Into the Imagination with Figment” in the Imagination Pavilion.


Fun Fact Friday- World Showcase

The world showcase might possibly be my favorite spot on all of Disney property.  Within Epcot there are two distinct realms; Future World and the World Showcase.  Future world is wonderful and holds one of my all time favorite rides at Disney- Soarin, but there is something so special about the countries within the World Showcase.  For an afternoon you can become a world traveler and visit 11 international locations.

Listed below are the countries that you can visit at the world showcase-






The United States of America




United Kingdom


BUT… did you know- 

As crowded as it may seem, there is actually room in the world showcase for an additional 8 countries.


If there was an expansion, what countries would you like to see added??  My top two picks would be Greece, and Spain