Home » Lost Legends: Disney’s Forgotten Skyway and its Return to Disney World’s Skies

Lost Legends: Disney’s Forgotten Skyway and its Return to Disney World’s Skies

Sometimes, the simplest asides leave the biggest impression.

So while our Lost Legend series has so far chronicled the unbelievable stories of the world’s greatest lost attractions, today we leave tales of The Great Movie Ride, JAWS, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, TEST TRACK, and other closed classics behind in favor of a look into a much different kind of Disney classic…

Since Disneyland and Magic Kingdom’s earliest days, it was hard to snap a photograph of the happiest places on Earth without catching at least a glimpse of The Skyway. This spectacular and simple-looking attraction existed for a seemingly straightforward purpose: to shuttle guests from Fantasyland to Tomorrowland or back, gliding effortlessly over these magic kingdoms. For decades, the Skyway felt like a gentle but functional part of a visit to Disney’s “castle” parks.

Image: Disney

But in reality, it was so much more. Today, we’ll dig into this spectacular ride system to see how Walt’s fascination with transportation brought the never-before-seen technology to the U.S. for the first time, explore the ride’s famous Floridian installation, and then see how – sixty years after its debut – Disney is about to elevate the reborn airborne skyway as a new signature of Walt Disney World…

Take to the skies

Though he may be best remembered as an artist, dreamer, storyteller, and creative visionary, Walt Disney’s friends and family maintain that above all else, he was a futurist. A product of the early 20th century, Walt had lived through countless eras of innovation and change, and he tried to capture that spirit of progress in Disneyland. It’s no coincidence that Main Street, U.S.A. forever captures the fleeting moment when the gas lamp and the electric lamp coexisted.

Image: Disney

In Walt’s lifetime, he’d seen the horse-drawn carriage replaced by the automobile, and when Disneyland opened in 1955, he set Autopia among the lineup of attractions in Tomorrowland – fittingly futuristic since President Eisenhower had not yet signed the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956 that would establish interstate highways!

Transportation was always a medium in which Walt could express his optimism, and before the park’s first birthday, WED Enterprises (the forerunner to modern Imagineering) had installed yet another forward thinking ride system.

Image: Disney

Just a few months after the opening of Disneyland – in fall 1955 – Walt Disney learned that the Von Roll Company, a Swiss industrial manufacturer of ski lifts, was testing a transportation system involving small gondolas moving along suspended cables.

According to the indispensible Disneyland: The Nickel Tour by Bruce Gordon and David Mumford: “Walt was so intrigued by the possibilities that he bought one before he even knew where it would go. In one interview, prior to the ride’s opening, he described the Skyway as ‘a transportation system of the future, for use in parking lots in huge shopping centers.’ By November 18 [1955], the Von Roll engineers were working with designer John Hench to finalize the attraction.”

Disneyland’s Skyway

Image: Disney

The Skyway to Tomorrowland and Skyway to Fantasyland (technically counted as two attractions, located in Fantasyland and Tomorrowland, respectively) opened before the park’s first birthday, on June 23, 1956. Though we consider it simple and practical by today’s standards, the Skyway rides were legitimately spectacular, representing the first-of-their-kind installation in the United States. Built entirely by Von Roll (technically, it’s a Von Roll 101 model aerial ropeway), the Skyway was made in part from used equipment left over from an installation at the 1955 Rotterdam Fair and German Federal Garden Show.

Image: Ryan Yungul, Yesterland.com 

In true Disney fashion, the Skyway was neatly dressed. Fantasyland’s station (housing the ride’s spectacularly powerful machinery to keep the cable circulating) was designed to resemble a Swiss-style chalet in an alpine garden, set on a forested hill in Fantasyland. White-and-red aeronautical towers lead to Tomorrowland’s industrial, modern “sky station” (where the 35,000 pound counterweight kept the cable tight).

1958. Image: Disney

Along the 1,250 foot, 3½ minute journey between Fantasyland and Tomorrowland, the Skyway would skid over four support towers, with the 60’ foot tall apex support being at least partially concealed by “Holiday Hill” (truly just a mound of earth excavated to form Sleeping Beauty Castle’s moat, landscaped to create an appealing picnic hill separating Fantasyland and Tomorrowland). A mild sightseeing tour (or a terrifying thrill ride depending on your comfort with heights), the Skyway was an instant hit and required the most expensive and limited ride ticket (a D-Ticket) to experience in 1956.

Image: Disney

At that time, the Skyway featured 44 metal gondolas. Believe it or not, each had only two seats – literally patio chairs bolted to the floor – with a metal pole directly through the center of each gondola. 

Moving on

The Skyway wouldn’t be the last prototype transportation system to be showcased at Disneyland as an attraction.

From his first happenstance glimpse of an Alweg monorail on a European road trip with his wife, Walt became fascinated with the sleek, aerial transportation system. In 1959, Walt oversaw the largest expansion in the young park’s history – so grand, it was televised as a “re-opening” of Disneyland! The Disneyland-Alweg Monorail was the first ever E-Ticket attraction, co-debuting alongside two other brand new Tomorrowland headliners…

It just so happened that another E-Ticket opening the same day was set to be built directly in the path of the Skyway, replacing “Holiday Hill.” Brilliantly, the Skyway was closed late in 1957 as its tallest support tower was demolished and literally replaced by Disney’s first “mountain” – the Matterhorn Bobsleds.

The Matterhorn structure itself housed a guide tower along the Skyway’s route, so when the ride re-opened alongside the Tomorrowland expansion in 1959, guests got an inside look at what the guide map called “Glacier Grotto.” (In reality, the Matterhorn was simply empty, revealing its cavernous, hollow, structural-support interior until true glacial caverns were added in 1978. That’s also when Skyway riders would get a fleeting glimpse of the dreaded Abominable Snowman deep in the mountain…)

Image: Disney

In 1965, the Skyway’s circular, 2-person buckets were finally replaced with a more familiar design. Disney Legend Bob Gurr was tasked with refining the vehicle (his specialty) to double each unit’s capacity. However, the existing ride system meant his vehicles could be only a few pounds heavier than the original model… His ABS plastic models with a steel frame doubled each bucket’s capacity to four (two facing forward and two facing backward), removed the center post, and created the iconic and remembered rectangular buckets that graced the skies over Disneyland (and soon, Magic Kingdom) for thirty years.

You can take a relaxing trip on Disneyland’s lost Skyway through the Matterhorn as it was in the 1990s here:

But Walt wasn’t done with Tomorrowland, or with his ever-growing pursuit to find new ways to move people. And keeping with the theme of Walt’s forays into transportation solutions for tomorrow, another revolutionary prototype system – fellow Lost Legend: The Peoplemover – opened alongside Walt’s New Tomorrowland in 1967.

Image: Disney

An icon of the park, this high-capacity, continuously loading journey through Tomorrowland was a wonder, whisking guests along the upper story of Tomorrowland in a timeless, sightseeing tour of what the action-packed future could hold.

And it was just one piece of the 1967 New Tomorrowland that’s so beloved and lamented by fans… Dubbed a “World on the Move,” guests in this kinetic Space Age paradise were truly surrounded by motion and by Walt’s sincere forecasts of how human ingenuity would see transportation and urban living evolve. 

Image: Disney

The pastel Peoplemover gliding overhead; the swirling Rocket Jets atop the land’s central pedestal; the revolving Modern Marvel: Carousel of Progress at the land’s center; the bubbling Submarine Voyage sailing beneath the iconic Monorail, with the cars of the Autopia sputtering along the landscape… and the Skyway, perpetually floating effortlessly over it all, rhythmically returning to Earth.

So for all the ways that Disney Parks fans celebrate this most definitive and beloved version of Tomorrowland in its truest and most genuine form, perhaps it’s easy to forget that in every image, postcard, and concept art for the land, the Skyway is seemingly always in view.

Image: Disney

This New Tomorrowland – a pinnacle of Walt’s futurism – was indeed a spectacular showcase of what the future of transportation could hold. But by the end of the 1960s, designers were hard at work on what the Florida Project should look like… It was time to take the mere prototypes of Tomorrowland put them to use. Read on…

From imagination to application

Image: Disney

In Walt’s mind, the entire purpose of his “Florida Project” didn’t have anything to do with castles, princesses, or pirates. As usual, Walt was thinking bigger. And while he would build a “Disneyland East” theme park in order to gain the governmental control he sought, his plan was always to turn Central Florida into his Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. This EPCOT was a true city that Walt imagined would become the blueprint for all modern cities to be built after, internationally.

And though Disneyland had allowed him to experiment with transportation technologies as mere “rides,” those systems now prototyped and approved could actually be applied to Disney World and its EPCOT.

Image: Disney

While Disneyland had been built in the era of automobiles, the Florida Project would be a child of the aviation age. So when guests landed at the Disney World Airport, their first step would be onto a Monorail, as real as New York’s subways or Tokyo’s train system. This Monorail would accelerate away from the airport and pass through EPCOT. Guests disembarking would find themselves in the cavernous cities interior, with a dozen Peoplemover tracks whisking guests out of the center of town and into neighborhoods, shopping districts, parks, and more, like arteries radiating out from a heart.

You see how the rides Walt and his designers had experimented with at Disneyland were set to become full-fledged, authentic, applied means of transportation at Disney World?

Of course, we know what happened – Walt’s unexpected death in 1966 sidelined any hopes of Walt Disney Productions attempting such an ambitious, costly, and ambiguous project as building a futuristic city. Instead, Disney World’s anchor would be the planned “Disneyland East,” eventually named Magic Kingdom.

(EPCOT Center would eventually open, indeed connected via Monorail to the resort’s transportation hub… but this 1982 theme park merely merged the “core ideas” of EPCOT the city with a World’s Fair, albeit dedicating an entire pavilion to the millennia-long development of human transportation – the Lost Legend: World of Motion.)

When designers got to work on the Magic Kingdom, one of their first responsibilities was to determine which attractions should make the jump from Disneyland. Perhaps it’s surprising that – 15 years after its Californian debut – the Skyway was still fascinating enough to warrant inclusion in the new Floridian park!

The Skyway opened alongside Walt Disney World on October 1, 1971, and like Disneyland’s, the one-way trip was from and to Fantasyland and Tomorrowland. Read to step aboard?

The Skyway

Image: Disney

Our journey through the skies of Magic Kingdom can begin at either Fantasyland or Tomorrowland’s station, with each appropriately designed to fit into the area. Since flying into the future has a certain ring to it, we’ll begin here in Fantasyland. Just outside of the bright, pastel, medieval faire tournament tents of “town,” a forested grove contains a towering Swiss chalet up on a hillside. Perhaps the most fairytale sight offered in all of Fantasyland, this charming little plaza is floated over by a continuous stream of bright, colorful, rectangular “buckets” launching from the chalet’s upper level.

The line probably won’t move very quickly, but at least it’s pleasant to relax in the switchbacks of the forested grove, gently ascending alongside a babbling brook to the wood and stone lodge.

Image: Werner Weiss, Yesterland.com

Even opening with the four-person gondolas that Disneyland only recieved in 1965, the Skyway to Tomorrowland is still a low-capacity attraction, especially for the “Vacation Kingdom of the World.” Each gondola can hold 4 guests (or a maximum of 700 pounds). Once guests are seated, the Cast Member closes the door to the open-air cabin and gives it a push along the rail it’s suspended from. A mechanism holds the cabin in place until its dispatch interval, then releases the cabin to slide onto the continuously-moving wire that circulated between the stations.

Image: Werner Weiss, Yesterland.com

The cabin dips and sways for a moment as it’s lifted skyward, gently rocking in the breeze. The Skyway silently floats down the center of Fantasyland’s western path. If you look to the left or the right, you might spoil some of the “illusion” of Fantasyland.

After all, the park’s guest-facing facades don’t tell the whole truth… From this vantage point, it’s clear that the charming storybook tents, village facades, and tiny shops of Fantasyland actually conceal massive, industrial showbuildings covered in not-so-beautiful HVAC units. Peter Pan’s Flight even shares a showbuilding with the Hall of Presidents and the Mickey Mouse Revue (or the 3D Magic Journeys or Legend of the Lion King, depending on when you ride). Similarly, the Lost Legends: Snow White’s Scary Adventures and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride are actually in the same building!

Image: J. Spence

But now, the Skyway continues its climb, gliding over Dumbo the Flying Elephant and alongside the crystal clear waters of the park’s most famous Lost Legend: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. A fleet of the steampunk Nautilus ship depicted in Jules Verne’s 19th century novel (and brought memorably to life in Disney’s 1954 film adaptation) slices through the water en route to the deep ocean, and from here, you can get a hazy glimpse of the coastal reef that guests onboard are passing through.

As Fantasyland fades from view, the Skyway begins to make a descent. It may appear that our floating gondolas are headed for landing in the Lost Legend: Mickey’s Toontown Fair, but the ride is simply making a quick swing through a turn-station located closer to ground level.

Image: Alan Huffman, via Yesterland.com

There, a Disney Cast Member waves hello as the click-and-clang of the station switch vibrate the gondola. Then, you’re off once more, now surrounded in the sounds of revving engines at the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway. 

The sputtering vehicles rumble through the trees as the gleaming, white, classic Tomorrowland arrives, with its own covered Peoplemover highway twisting around and through its showbuildings. Here, stark, white, industrial rooftops at least make sense. 

Image: Brotherdave, via Walt Dated World

And besides, all eyes must be drawn toward the orbiting Rocket Jets (and later, Astro Orbiter) high atop a pedestal, just as they are and always will be at Disneyland. And for most of this ride’s life, the real view worth seeing would be of the towering Space Mountain, with its white, conical structure just asking to be explored.

The Skyway comes to a smooth, ever-moving landing in Tomorrowland, where – as in the Disneyland original – the massive counterweight keeps the perfect tension on the park-spanning cable. 

Image: Disney

The one-way journey between Fantasyland and Tomorrowland takes only four minutes. And while the experience on the Skyway might not be your typical Disney adventure, it’s an adventure nonetheless.

Here’s a point-of-view video taken during the ride’s penultimate year to help you see, hear, and feel exactly what a trip to Tomorrowland aboard Magic Kingdom’s Skyway was like… Sit back, relax, and enjoy the flight…


In the 1970s – no doubt bolstered by Magic Kingdom’s opening – amusement parks and theme parks appeared across the United States, often emulating the most intrinsic elements of Disney’s parks (like central icons, hub-and-spokes layouts, and themed “lands”). In the three years following Disney World’s debut, Six Flags St. Louis, (Six Flags) Magic Mountain, Kings Island, Opryland, Carowinds, SeaWorld Orlando, Worlds of Fun in Kansas City, (Six Flags) Great Adventure, Kings Dominion, and Busch Gardens Williamsburg all broke ground.

Many of them featured aerial skyways… Enough, in fact, that guests might’ve assumed that the rides at Disneyland and Magic Kingdom were simply off-the-shelf attractions rather than the engineering marvels they truly were.

Image: Kings Island

In some ways, the fate of the Skyway isn’t so different from the Monorail or the Peoplemover. Though Walt had installed these sincerely brilliant transportation systems at his theme parks merely to propose their real-world use, they became so closely associated with theme parks that they never really made the jump to actual cities.

Perhaps the Skyway’s story is cut from the same cloth. Though Skyways could’ve become a smart intra-city transport option between city centers and sports venues; to cultural attractions; among university buildings; from parking lots to malls, the technology instead became too synonymous with theme parks to be considered for actual, practical application.

Almost airborne

Image: Disney

Seemingly embracing its now-cemented theme park identity, Disney even played with incorporating a modern sky-ride at Disneyland Paris in the 1990s. 

There, the ride would become thematically wrapped into the park’s retro-futuristic, Jules Verne inspired Discoveryland (a European-friendly Tomorrowland replacement). The Hyperion Skyway was drafted as a ride that would allow guests to sail over the rocky, bubbling pools of Discoveryland on steampunk-stylized airships.

Image: Disney

Needless to say, Discoveryland was soon reigned in by the realities of finance. The Hyperion Skyway didn’t make it into the final Disneyland Paris, and the 1990s are marked by the end of the sky-ride transportation system at Disney Parks rather than its revival.  On the next page, we’ll take a look at the closure of both Skyways in Disneyland and Walt Disney World. But don’t lose hope! The story is about to come full circle… Read on…


Image: Disney

For decades, the Skyways continued to operate at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World (up to and including, for example, the debut of Magic Kingdom’s New Tomorrowland, above. Yes, the Skyway co-existed with Lost Legends: Alien Encounter and The Timekeeper!).

Sure, they were remnants of another time in Disney Parks history. If the ride were built from scratch in the mid-90s, fans would decry its reality-shattering views of Fantasyland’s industrial rooftops; its story-breaking connection between a European village and a city of the future; its pastel buckets passing through a mountain…. Indeed, in the Eisner era of immersive, E-Ticket thrills, the Skyway wouldn’t pass muster. Could you really imagine its technicolor buckets floating over Wizarding-World style New Fantasyland?

But “grandfathered” in, they were a simple, joyful, passive, and beloved part of Disneyland, Magic Kingdom, and Tokyo Disneyland.

Image: Disney, via davelandweb.com

Disneyland’s Skyway closed first, on November 9, 1994. Disney cited metal fatigue, noting that the Matterhorn’s support tower had developed cracks that would be unfixable without disassembling the mountain structure itself. More than 150 million guests had sailed over Disneyland aboard the Skyway in its lifetime of over 38 years.

Within weeks of its closure, the Skyway’s cables and supports were dismantled, and soon after, the Matterhorn’s holes were filled in. Imagineers today admit that – in the budget-conscious era after the financial pitfall of Disneyland Paris – executives considered the parks to be zero sum units, requiring that any new attraction be balanced by an older ride’s closure. For the Skyway, its counterbalance was the opening of the Modern Marvel: Indiana Jones Adventure, its Cast Members and operating budget being “transferred” to the much higher-capacity ride.

Image: Disney

(In May 2015, the Matterhorn re-opened from an extensive reburbishment with brand new Audio-Animatronics of the dreaded Abominable Snowman, and a new fly-by scene of a snowy cavern filled with things that the mountain guardian had hoarded over the years. His treasure trove of memorobilia included a crashed Skyway gondola, as if the creature had ripped it off the cable and stashed it away decades earlier!)

Exactly five years to the day after the closure of Disneyland’s ride – on November 9, 1999 – Magic Kingdom’s Skyway closed as well, after an impressive 28 year life. Two days after its demise, an article in the Orlando Sentinel explained the reason:

“‘It’s part of our ongoing efforts to phase out some of the older attractions and introduce new things to keep our parks exciting for our new and repeat visitors,” Walt Disney World spokesman Diane Ledder said Tuesday. “It’s just something whose time has come.’”

Nonetheless, our friend Werner Weiss at Yesterland (an invaluable resource for Skyway photos) notes that no “new things” came to Magic Kingdom until May 2001 when The Magic Carpets of Aladdin debuted. A more realistic reason? That – like the Lost Legend: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea that it sailed over – the Skyway was simply too costly to operate relative to its low hourly capacity and admittedly-aging experience.

At both resorts, Disney was in no rush to demolish the Skyway’s stations in Fantasyland and Tomorrowland.

Image: Theme Park Tourist

At Magic Kingdom, the Fantasyland Skyway station remained for more than a decade after the ride’s 1999 closure as a last Swiss sentinal standing just past It’s a Small World on the path to Liberty Square. The hilltop chalet was finally taken down in summer 2011, becoming the infamous Tangled restrooms. Rapunzel’s tower stands about where the station’s prominent clocktower once did. The Tomorrowland station had its second story demolished, but the ground floor structure remains to this day as the restrooms behind the Rockettower Plaza Stage between Space Mountain and the Carousel Theater.

2003. Image: Alan Huffman, Yesterland.com

Though the ride closed even earlier at Disneyland, the last vestiges of the ride lasted longer. Temporarily used as stroller parking, the Swiss chalet on a forested hill eventually became overgrown, visible only to those who knew to look for it. It was demolished in 2016 to make way for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge construction.

Finally… full-circle!

It’s interesting to consider what became of the three transportation systems Walt Disney pioneered and tested at Disneyland.

The Peoplemover might never have achieved the widespread urban use that Disney had planned, but the transportation system was earmarked to make the jump from “ride” to actual applied infrastructure at EPCOT, Lake Buena Vista Village, and the Disneyland Resort (back in the days of Westcot’s announcement).

Image: Disney

The Monorail – while always inherently tied to Disney – was at least elevated from its mere “attraction in Tomorrowland” role at Disneyland to an authentic transportation system there when it extended to the Disneyland Hotel in 1961. And of course, the Monorail became the iconic backbone of Disney World’s transportation infrastructure, even if the system’s 1989 Mark VI rolling stock are overtaxed and overburdened in a system that’s regrettably underbuilt for the expanding resort, requiring an arsenal of buses to do most of the heavy lifting.

But that third system – the Skyway – just never made the jump to Disney World the way the other two did… Even with the chance to expand and grow to its larger tank in Florida, the Skyway remained a one-way aerial tram ride between Fantasyland and Tomorrowland until the day it closed after 28 years of service. Until….

Disney Skyliner

Image: Disney

Who would’ve ever foreseen that Disney would revive the Skyway?

And yet, that appeared to  have been what was announced on July 15, 2017 when the Disney Parks Blog fessed up with what uncovered construction permits had unbelievably suggested: the Disney Skyliner would soon break ground at Walt Disney World.

Image: Disney

Officially opened September 27, 2019, Disney’s new aerial gondola ride completes the trifecta of Walt’s transportation trio, elevating the Skyway from being merely a ride to being applied for real life use. The enclosed gondolas are part of an ambitious system connecting three resort hotel stations (Disney’s Caribbean Beach, the new DVC Riviera Resort, and a station shared by Disney’s Pop Century and Art of Animation Resorts) to both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The gondolas even slow as they pass through the turn-station along Buena Vista Drive en route to and from Epcot, to view the mechanical equipment that powers the system.

Part of that elevation from “nice” to “necessary” will be reflected in the Skyliner’s undeniable evolution. This high-capacity, continuously-loading system holds 8 seated passengers in breezy gondolas, flying at  speeds of 11mph (slowing to 1mph for loading and unloading). In fact, the Skyliner is one of Disney’s leading projects in its slow but steady realization that it’s less a resort than a city, and needs a robust transportation infrastructure that’s both resort-wide and attractive.

Image: Disney

While naysayers decry the Skyliner as nothing more than a way for Disney to avoid expanding the Monorail, the Disney Skyliner system is actually quite creative in the way that it connects two deceptively close theme parks that otherwise would require a senseless and time-consuming bus ride, and how it elevates some of Disney’s existing hotels to now read as premium, park-connected offerings.

Wonderfully, Disney also took great care to ensure that the stations for this aerial system feel at home in their surroundings… For example, constructing a Pan-Pacific teal art-deco influenced station at Disney’s Hollywood Studios…

… A fittingly fancy landing site at Epcot’s International Gateway entrance just outside of World Showcase…

… A breezy central interchange station at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort…

Image: Disney

… and a sleek, modern, playful station located on the narrow peninsula bridge of Hourglass Lake between Disney’s Art of Animation Resort and Disney’s Pop Century Resort.

What’s more, Disney’s decision-makers are allegedly keeping their fingers crossed that the Skyliner works as it’s meant to, given that the system is modular and intended to expand west (connecting Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, Blizzard Beach, Coronado Springs, and Disney’s All-Star Resorts) and eventually east (to Disney Springs and nearby resorts) in multi-phase expansions to the system. In other words, the Skyliner may be Disney’s long-sought solution for elevating its transportation infrastructure once and for all… 

What’s a little less exciting is the vinyl sticker appliqué of a Disney character that’s applied to each gondola’s windows. (How much less “timeless” would the Monorail be if its early designers had stuck cartoon character stickers in its windows rather than letting its sleek shape, iconic style, and signature colors and patterns shine? Would it have been as inspirational and iconic if the trains came with Ariel, King Triton, and Ursula stickers pre-applied to the windows, “built into” the system’s design?)

Image: Disney

Even since it’s opening, it’s unclear if the Skyliner will become a timeless and “iconic” aspect of Walt Disney World’s transportation system like the Monorails (and, in their own way, buses) have, but the sleek, simple, and convenient routes will no doubt provide stunning new views…

Which is another source of contention, of course, because those “new views” will sometimes be of backstage areas, industrial rooftops, and otherwise off-limits sights, while simultaneously and controversially installing new, metal, industrial support towers visible from inside the theme parks’ fantasy-enveloped realms.

Image: Disney

But then again, that makes the Disney Skyliner a perfect modern incarnation of the old and beloved Skyway that did the same…!

From the sky and back again

The Skyway is perhaps an unusual attraction for our Lost Legends series to highlight.

Image: Disney

After all, one may wonder if a seemingly-simple transportation ride that – admittedly – broke most of the modern rules of what Disney Parks should do really deserves to be immortalized among epic, industry-changing fellow Lost Legends: Universe of Energy, Alien Encounter, Journey into Imagination, STAR TOURS, Back to the Future: The Ride, Maelstrom, Soarin’ Over California, or any of the dozens of other in-depth entries we’ve written on closed classics. And yet, the ride that served as a photographic backdrop for a generation or more of Disney’s guests was a treasure! It was an icon of Disney innovation and style, no less than the Monorail or Peoplemover… and though it took sixty years, it’s finally being elevated to be more than a ride, but a true test of what transportation can be.

Now, we want to hear from you. Did you experience the Skyway at Disneyland or Walt Disney World? Does this “simple” transportation attraction deserve a spot among our Lost Legends entries? And what do you make of Disney’s attempt – 60 years later – to make this slow-moving, sightseeing sky ride a legitimate means of transportation for its Florida resort? We’ll see you in the comments below!