A trip to Walt Disney World is meant to be a time to turn off your brain, enjoy some sights, sounds, and thrills, and escape from the real world for just a bit. Disney accomplishes all of those things quite well, in fact — so much so that millions of people visit year after year.
But, there is one element of a Disney vacation that is sometimes overlooked: It’s really funny.
Sure, it can be funny watching angsty teens try to hide their smile during the nighttime fireworks shows. And, yes, it’s always worth a laugh when some dad cracks a joke while stuck in traffic on the resort buses. But, that’s not really what I mean.
You see, Disney’s attractions can often be just as funny as they are inspiring. Whether it’s a visual gag, a witty quip, or a perfectly timed one-liner, there are plenty of jokes you’ll find yourself laughing at during a Disney vacation.
Here are just a few of the best (and, for the sake of simplicity, we’ll only list one from each attraction):
Jungle Cruise - “I’d like to point out some of my favorite plants.”
Obviously, the Jungle Cruise is the first and most notable joke-filled attraction at Walt Disney World. Though it grew out of Walt Disney’s sincere attempt to capture the majesty of the natural world, it has since become the repository of some of the greatest puns Earth has ever come to know.
Each skipper brings their own voice to the attraction, and on occasion, a new joke becomes a part of the attraction's famous oevre. But over time, there have been some jokes that stand out above the others.
If you were looking for one joke that adeptly summarizes the attraction’s unique point of view, there is an obvious choice. With the skipper intoning the traditional tour-guide voice, they say, “I’d like to point out some of my favorite plants,” before silently gesturing toward a couple of trees, seemingly at random.
Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor - “That Guy”
By its nature, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor is largely unscripted. Yes, certain monsters retell jokes throughout the day and season, but improv and crowd work are deeply essential to the show’s appeal — so much so that it can feel like a different show every time you see it.
Nowhere is that more clear than in the attraction’s iconic “That Guy” bit. Everyone loves a good callback joke, and when one member of the audience repeatedly gets called out during the show, their transformation into a minor celebrity will always garner laughs.
If you’ve seen the show, you’ll know just what we’re talking about. If you haven’t, hey, no spoilers here.
Liberty Square Riverboat - “It’s better to keep your mouth shut.”
Is it cheating to include a witticism of one of America’s most well-known authors on this list? Well, yes it is. But, what makes this such a funny joke is, naturally, its Disney-specific context.
The Liberty Square Riverboat is a piece of classic Disneyana, combining a bit of American history with a relaxing tour of the theme park. The narrator on the journey happens to be Samuel Clemens, who (according to the attraction) is officially the pilot onboard the ship.
Clemens, better known to us as Mark Twain, proceeds to share his knowledge of the surrounding parkland, from Splash Mountain to the Haunted Mansion. But, throughout, he makes sure to shoehorn in as many well-known Twainisms as he possibly can.
The first is perhaps his most famous, “I always figure it is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.” From the moment this line is heard, the Riverboat becomes not just a scenic journey around the Rivers of America, but also a silly scavenger hunt to see how many clever Twain quotes you can recognize.