Listen – no one likes to see a Disney Parks ride close. Even if you ignore the tens of millions of beloved memories made on every square foot of Disney property, there's the question of capacity. It's generally agreed upon that Disney World's parks need more rides, not fewer! But once in a while, we have to acknowledge that some rides could be worth the loss...
Don't hate us, but today we've collected a few attractions that we think have just outlived their usefulness. It's not that these rides need to be rethought or reimagined; they need to be removed. Seriously... Give us a chance to explain...
1. Magic Carpets of Aladdin
Don't get us wrong – while small spinners and family flat rides might not have E-Ticket appeal and excitement, they are essential in Disney theme parks. Overall, we think Disney's theme parks need more family flat rides, not fewer! But for this one, we're willing to make an exception.
Magic Kingdom is unique in that Disney World's "Castle Park" features four – yes, four – rides that are functionally identical, differentiated only by their decoration. Combined with the "doubled Dumbo" and the Astro Orbiter, the Magic Carpets of Aladdin are simply one spinner too many.
Opened in 2001, the ride is conspicuously set down right in the middle of Magic Kingdom's Adventureland, turning what was a very nice Tiki Room-adjacent tropical plaza into a random Middle Eastern bazaar of cartoon-colorful fiberglass camels. It's like if Disney put a "Flying Bison" carnival ride right in the middle of Frontierland.
It doesn't fit. It isn't worth it. And reportedly, the ride has been regularly encountering up to five hours of downtime a day, officially strengthening our belief that it's time for this Adventureland ride to disappear for good. If Disney wanted to keep the capacity boost, then put a less conspicuous and cartoon-y Tropical Twirl in its place... and please let it be any flat ride except another "Dumbo."
2. Beauty and the Beast – Live
Look – some classics are classics for a reason. No one would argue that Disney should close Pirates of the Caribbean or the Haunted Mansion just because they've been around a long time... But in the theme park world, stage shows rarely have long lifespans. That makes sense – shows tend to have less repeat appeal and narrower audiences than rides, and their format makes it easy and natural to swap out one show for another to keep offerings fresh.
For some reason, that hasn't happened with Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Believe it or not, this show opened at the park the same day that the film debuted in theaters... November 22, 1991. Aside from when the "Theater of the Stars" was relocated from Hollywood Blvd. to the new Sunset Blvd. in 1994 and its closure during the pandemic, this show has been operating continuously for 32 years – longer than some of our readers have been alive!
Obviously, Beauty and the Beast is worthy of a permanent presence in Disney Parks (as evidenced by Magic Kingdom's New Fantasyland and Tokyo Disneyland's Beauty and the Beast dark ride)... but three decades later, the super-condensed retelling at Hollywood Studios in an open air theater feels outdated. Maybe this venue and the "Hyperion Theater" (hosting the Frozen Sing-Along) should switch contents, leaving the indoor, air conditioned, high-capacity theater for a full, Broadway-caliber Beauty and the Beast show (like Disney California Adventure's Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular) while the "Theater of the Stars" hosts rotating sing-alongs of the newest Disney flicks.