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“It’s a small world after all, it’s a small world after all. It’s a small world after all, it’s a small, small world.” Love it or hate it, we all know that song. And everyone who has ever been to Disney World or Disneyland knows the ride. All the cute little dolls from different regions of the world singing that song as you cruise by in your boat. So, if everyone knows the ride so well, what is so special about the It’s a Small World holiday overlay at Disneyland? Why do thousands of people line up every Christmas season to experience this twist on the classic? I didn’t understand it until I saw it for myself. Here’s why it’s special and why you need to see it!
In the original version of this iconic attraction, the same song plays throughout the entire ride. And, it has a way of getting stuck in your head for days afterwards. But, during It’s a Small World Holiday, the original song is mixed with traditional Christmas music. About the time the classic song begins to get annoying, it switches to a festive holiday tune. And the switch in music is so seamless, that you don’t really even notice when it goes back and forth. This addition of the Christmas music makes the ride a much more pleasant experience because you don’t find it playing in your brain on an endless loop for a week afterwards the way you do with the original version. I find that the additional music is a huge plus to the ride.
Like the music, the holiday decorations that are added during the It’s a Small World Holiday overlay are incorporated into the attraction in such a way that you don’t even remember what the ride was like when they aren’t there. Some of the decorations are subtle, like a candy cane in a doll’s hand, while others are over-the-top, like the giant Christmas tree in the “white room”. But all of them are classic, just like the ride. And all of the decorations work together to create the perfect blend of celebrating the season with the original message of the attraction.
Probably the biggest over-the-top decoration in It’s a Small World Holiday is the light display on the outside facade. The traditionally white facade is transformed by thousands of colorful lights after the sun goes down during the holiday season. Not only is this dazzling display of lights beautiful, but it also sets the tone for the festive celebration of the ride before you even step into the queue. While I definitely suggest riding this during the daytime, you should also come back a second time after dark to experience this holiday overlay in all its glory. The lights set the mood for not only the festivities inside the attraction, but also for the rest of your seasons celebrations.
The Christmas Spirit
I love Christmas and find that it doesn’t take much for me to get into the spirit of the holidays. But, the It’s a Small World holiday overlay has a way of getting even the scrooges in the family into the Christmas spirit. The lights, decorations, and music all work together to create a warm fuzzy feeling deep down in your core that makes you view the world in a more loving and giving way. The ride highlights the best of the season, which has a way of bringing out the best in people. It also makes you want to spend time with those you love. When you get off of this ride, you just can’t help but be in the festive spirit. This ride is a great way to start off your holiday season or end it on a high note.
It’s a Small World Holiday at Disneyland is a unique way to celebrate the season with your family. This twist to the classic ride is a seamless blend that strengthens the attraction’s peace on Earth message. Kids and adults alike will love this special treat for the holidays. If you are in southern California during the holiday season, take time to experience it with your family. You won’t regret it! To book tickets or see operating hours, visit Disneyland’s website. For more things to do at Disneyland, see my magical must-do’s at Disneyland and California Adventure, Disneyland’s Toontown, and the unique quick-service restaurants at Disneyland. Happy travels!