One of the most consistent features you run across, or over, or through, as you visit the Walt Disney World Resort is the presence of water everywhere you go. From the Seven Seas Lagoon to the hazards on the Fantasia miniature golf course, water is an ever present design element at the resort.
Walt Disney World Resort
From the very beginnings Walt knew what a great feature water could play in the imagination. From the great Nautilus scenes in 20,000 Leages Under the Sea, to the very first submarine rides at Disneyland, Walt was aware of the vitality water can bring to the imagination.
On its own, as a bubbling fountain, integrated into the overall design of the landscape, used to power an attraction or integrated to provide ambient noise that prevents the outside world from intruding on the fantasy water can be found throughout the entire Disney World.
Seven Seas Lagoon
From the earliest days water was a design element for the resort. Bay Lake, The Seven Seas Lagoon and the other lakes of Walt Disney World were integrated and expanded to supplement the vision for the resort. Bay Lake is about a mile across and provides a sweeping vista as one arrives to the Magic Kingdom; be it over it with the monorail system or on it via the various boats and launches sailings its waters
The Imagineers learned how to break up the landscape and utilize water as an architectural element. Dividing the parks from the resorts or even separate lands within the park using various streams, rivers and lakes. The natural beauty was evident and the added bonus for some implementation was that running water provided a good sound barrier from other areas in the parks.
Walt and his brilliant Imagineers also learned early on the water had some other amazing qualities that could be integrated into the parks. For one, water was a great transport system that could help move the massive amounts of people visiting the parks. So they turned what was once a passive feature of the landscape into an active participant in their planning.
Water was no longer just a nice little feature, it was in some instances the main attraction. Pirates of the Caribbean was one of the first great rides to use the boat ride as an integral part of the storytelling. You were no longer watching the story unfold, you were riding along witnessing the barbarous acts of these bloodthirsty pirates.
Later on, the Imagineers also learned how to make water the star of its own show. As the technology grew, they began creating massive fountains with choreographed routines that would amaze people. Integrating it into the stories of the land and for some attractions, Journey into Imagination with Figment, making it a character in its own right. The dancing fountains outside the pavilion are an amazing display of this prowess.
Wrapping it up
As you wander the parks, take some time to see how brilliantly water has been integrated into the landscape of Walt Disney World. It is an important feature of the design of the parks and brings a lively quality to every aspect of the parks. It plays an important role all through the parks. From powering rides and hosting fireworks to just providing some settling calm as you enjoy your visit to the Walt Disney World Resort. Water is everywhere.