Description And Comments
Fantasmic! is a mixed-media show presented one or more times each evening that the park is open late (10 p.m. or later). Staged at the end of Tom Sawyer Island opposite the Frontierland and New Orleans Square waterfronts, Fantasmic! was at its debut the most extraordinary and ambitious outdoor spectacle ever attempted in any theme park. Starring Mickey Mouse in his role as the sorcerer's apprentice from Fantasia, the production uses lasers, images projected on a shroud of mist, fireworks, lighting effects, and music in combinations so stunning that you can scarcely believe what you have seen.
The plot is simple: good versus evil. The story gets lost in all the special effects at times, but no matter -- it is the spectacle, not the story line, that is so overpowering. While beautiful, stunning, and powerful are words that immediately come to mind, they fail to convey the uniqueness of this presentation. In recent years, the production has been upgraded with brighter high-definition projectors and a 45-foot-tall full-bodied fire-breathing dragon (nicknamed Murphy) for the finale. It could be argued, with some validity, that Fantasmic! alone is worth the price of Disneyland Park admission. Needless to say, we rate Fantasmic! as not to be missed.
After years of watching guests stake out prime viewing spots along the edge of the New Orleans Square and Frontierland waterfronts as much as 4 hours in advance, Disney implemented a FASTPASS-only policy for Fantasmic! that is very similar to the one enforced at DCA's World of Color. There are now a few ways to see Fantasmic!, none of which should require showing up more than 20 or 30 minutes before showtime.
Fantasmic FASTPASS viewing
The easiest method is to grab a FASTPASS ticket early in the day. Distribution of Fantasmic! FASTPASS tickets takes place on Big Thunder Trail. That's the path to the left of Big Thunder Mountain as you approach from Frontierland. FASTPASS tickets are distributed until one hour before show time or until they run out, whichever comes first. We usually see FASTPASS tickets for the show run out around noon.
The general FASTPASS viewing sections are Yellow, whose entrance is located near the petrified tree (across from Golden Horseshoe) in Frontierland; Blue, whose entrance is in front of the Haunted Mansion in New Orleans Square; and Green, located on the bridge over Pirates of the Caribbean's entrance. The color of the viewing section is printed on the ticket and that color is the only section the ticket holder is allowed to enter. Blue provides the most central view, but you can't request a specific section; before pulling your pass, ask a cast member at the FASTPASS machines which section they are dispensing, and which ones are gone.
Fantasmic! FASTPASS return windows begin one hour before showtime, and end when the show begins. If you need to stand right at the railing in the heart of the splash zone, you'll want to be the first inside the viewing pen when it opens. Otherwise, you're best off arriving about 20 minutes before curtain and watching from the rear back, taking advantage of the elevation as everyone in the standard FASTPASS sections must stand during the show. Entry can be a bit of a disorganized mess, so pay attention on packed nights; look for colored lights indicating your section's entrance, and follow the flashlight-wielding cast members' directions.
Fantasmic! FASTPASSes are "disconnected" from the rest of Disneyland's, meaning if you obtain a Fantasmic! FASTPASS you can also immediately obtain one for another attraction.
Fantasmic Dining Packages FASTPASS
Fantasmic! dining packages are available at Blue Bayou ($61.00 for adults and $23.00 for children) and River Belle Terrace ($41.99 for adults and $21.99 for children). Dining packages include a three-course meal and a FASTPASS ticket for a special preferred viewing area. The Blue Bayou package also includes a Fantasmic! themed seat cushion; only guests in the full-service dining FASTPASS section are permitted to sit through the show. The dinner package at Blue Bayou begins at 4 PM, and River Belle Terrace at 3PM.
For those looking to spend a little less money there is also the Fantasmic! On-the-Go Dining Package ($19.99 for adults and 13.99 for children) at Aladdin's Oasis in Adventureland. This package includes a boxed meal, dessert, bottled beverage, and a FASTPASS ticket. On-the-Go Dining Packages can be purchased 12-7 PM.
Fantasmic! viewing spots are first-come, first-serve for all guests, including those in the FASTPASS dining experience viewing section, which is located in front of the River Belle Terrace. A line will form 1 hour before each show time and the earlier you get in line the better spot you will obtain.
Reservations for all Fantasmic! dining packages can be made by calling the Disneyland Dining line at 714-781-3463.
Fantasmic Stand-By Viewing
Disney also offers limited stand-by viewing for all showings. Be warned that these viewing areas are not the best spots to see the show due to them being located at the far left and far right of the viewing area. You're going to be looking at the side of the show rather than the front of it. The stand-by line begins one hour before show time and is located at the dock where Mark Twain loads during the day. A second standby section is located near the Harbour Galley restaurant. The stand-by viewing sections are small and fill up quickly. Plan to get in line as soon as it opens one hour before show time. If you do not have a FASTPASS ticket, you will be aggressively shooed away from every available vantage point outside the designated standby sections.
No matter which method you use, you'll probably spend some time sitting around waiting. A mom from Lummi Island, Washington, dismantled her Disney stroller to make a nest:
We used the snap-off cover on the rental stroller to sit on during Fantasmic! since the ground was really cold.
Along similar lines, a middle-aged New York man wrote, saying:
Your excellent guidebook also served as a seat cushion while seated on the ground waiting for the show to begin. Make future editions thicker for greater comfort.
Rain and wind conditions sometimes cause Fantasmic! to be canceled. Unfortunately, Disney officials usually do not make a final decision about whether to proceed or cancel until just before showtime. Note that if you purchased a Fantasmic! dining package earlier in the day you will not not be refunded if a show is canceled.
Incidentally, if you invested in the Made with Magic (formerly known as Glow with the Show) light-up ears hats, headbands, gloves, or wands that synchronize with Disney California Adventure’s World of Color show, you’ll find that they interact with Fantasmic! as well, and do an even more impressive job of synchronizing with this show.
- We rate this attraction as Not To Be Missed.
Make sure to hang on to children during Fantasmic! and to give them explicit instructions for regrouping in the event you are separated. Be especially vigilant when the crowd disperses after the show.
Other Attractions in Frontierland
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- Mark Twain Riverboat
- Pirate's Lair on Tom Sawyer Island
- Sailing Ship Columbia
- The Laughing Stock Co.
Touring Plans with Fantasmic!
- Disneyland One-Day Touring Plan for Adults
- Disneyland Author's Select One-Day Plan
- Disneyland Two-Day Plan A - Day 1
- Disneyland Two-Day Plan B - Day 1
- Adult Plan-One Afternoon and One Full Day
|Shows at 9pm, and 10:45pm|
|Opening Date||May 13, 1992|
|Scope and scale||Headliner|
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