One of the park’s largest and most intricate rides opened with the park in 1971, and fans are rabid about it—many of them can recite the script verbatim (“I am your host . . . your ghost host!”). The outdoor queue area passes funny gravestones, some of them interactive and some carved with in-jokes and the names of Imagineers—keep a close eye on the last one with the female face, near the door to the house, because it keeps a close eye on you. Once you’re inside, you enter the famous “stretching room.” This area freaks out small children (one of my earliest life memories is of begging my mother to take me out of the line and back into the sunshine, and there’s still an escape route if you need it), but it’s as scary as it will get. Be on the far side of the stretching room to be the first out to the boarding zone. As spook houses go, the 8-minute trip is decidedly merry: All the ghosts seem to want to do is party. Passengers ride creepingly slow “doom buggy” cars linked together on an endless loop, no seat belts required—the proprietary system is called OmniMover. Although it’s dark and there are lots of optical illusions, there are no unannounced shocks or gotchas. The climax, a ghost gala in a cavernous graveyard set, is impossible to soak up in one go (one fun tip: The singing headstone with the broken head is voiced by the same guy who did Tony the Tiger for Frosted Flakes), so you may want to visit several times to catch the murderous back story revealed in the attic scene. The warehouselike “show building,” where most of the ride is contained, is cleverly disguised behind the mansion’s facade. Strategy: On busy days, lines can be the scariest aspect, so try going—bwah-ha-ha-ha!—after the sun goes down.
Magic Kingdom› Attraction
The Haunted Mansion
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.