Orlando/SoCal Theme Park Showdown: Space Mountain vs. Space Mountain
Our final match-up of the day in the Theme Park Insider Orlando/Southern California Showdown matches Disneyland's Space Mountain versus the Magic Kingdom's Space Mountain. Which is your favorite between the two versions? Consider whatever details you'd like - setting, decor, ride, narrative, or whatever petty individual bias you'd like to throw into the mix. The vote will be open for 24 hours.
Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom's Space Mountain: Tomorrowland
Disneyland's Space Mountain: Tomorrowland
The differences? Space Mountain debuted at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom in December 1974, then came to Disneyland in May 1977. The Orlando Space Mountain features two, nearly identical, Arrow tracks while Anaheim's coaster offers just one. But the Disneyland version added an on-board musical soundtrack in 1996 and the track was completely rebuilt in California between 2003-2005. The Disney World version got its own substantial refurbishment in 2009, adding interactive elements to the queue as well as sound effects within the ride. Fans of the old Epcot attraction Horizons will find some familiar sights in Disney World Space Mountain's post-show. Disneyland fans, though, get to enjoy a Halloween overlay on Space Mountain each year: Ghost Galaxy, featuring a holiday-themed musical soundtrack and special on-ride visual effects.
I've leave to you to argue about the smoothness and feel of the two rides. Feel free to further break down the match-up in the comments.
Other Showdown winners:
- Disneyland's Fantasmic! defeats Walt Disney World's Fantasmic!, 51% - 49%
- SeaWorld Orlando's Journey to Atlantis defeats SeaWorld San Diego's Journey to Atlantis, 84% - 16%
- Disneyland's It's a Small World defeats Walt Disney World's It's a Small World, 70% - 30%
- Walt Disney World's Tower of Terror defeats Disney California Adventure's Tower of Terror, 91% - 9%
- Walt Disney World's Splash Mountain defeats Disneyland's Splash Mountain, 76% - 24%
- Islands of Adventure's Jurassic Park River Adventure defeats Universal Studios Hollywood's Jurassic Park - The Ride, 58% - 42%
- Walt Disney World's Tom Sawyer's Island defeats Disneyland's Pirates Lair at Tom Sawyer's Island, 59% - 41%
- Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean defeats Walt Disney World's Pirates of the Caribbean, 75% - 25%
- Universal Studios Florida's Revenge of the Mummy defeats Universal Studios Hollywood's Revenge of the Mummy, 87% - 13%
- Walt Disney World's Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin defeats Disneyland's Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, 56% - 44%
- Walt Disney World's Haunted Mansion defeats Disneyland's Haunted Mansion, 58% - 42%
I've tried the one in Disneyworld and the one in EuroDisney. EuroDisney is totally different and is miles better! Has anyone.tried all 3?
Disneyland's is way better. The ride feels faster and bigger and the music is the main reason why this is the definitve Space Mountain. I do like the East Coast's version for its smaller cars and better queue area but Anaheim's is the best.
Well, first of, WDW Space Mountain opened January 15, 1975 (hence all of the Star-Port 7-5 allusions in the theming), not December 1974.
I'm counting the soft-open date, not the official one, which, yes, was January 1975.
I cannot believe that Magic Kingdom's Space Mountain is that close behind Disneyland's! DL's is FAR FAR superior!!
I just went to disneyland for the first time last month and really enjoyed exploring the differences between the two parks. (I'm a season passholder for all of the florida parks except for legoland so I've ridden space mountain florida many many times.)
I'd like to point out that WDW no longer has glow in the dark stripes, is darker and uses more projectors for FX than the DLR version.
My review was before the renovations. I felt Disneyland's was much better (which isn't saying much) and that the Magic Kingdom's version was a big disappointment. For a supposedly larger footprint, MK's Space Mountain didn't do much for me. The queue line was boring and looks very horrible with the tired FedEx displays.
I love Space Mountain. Disneyland's version is a little better. Was on Ghost Galaxy (Halloween Disneyland version) last month and I prefer that version even better.
You guys are crazy, Disney World's is waaaaaay better. The queue, the size and the load of Disneyland's is lame. I like the sense of riding by myself in World's. The ride is more exciting. Disneyland's track is boring!
Having been on the Tokyo, California, Paris and Florida versions... IMO Best to worst-> Paris, California, Tokyo, Florida.
Never been on either, but WDW's looks far more superior. No glowing means you dont know what to expect!
NO CONTEST! The Magic Kingdon's trains with the lower sides is a far more exhilirating ride.
Plus the stretching room on Space Mountain at WDWMK is better!
When did they remove the glow in the dark stripes in florida? I don't ride it every time I go because my wife doesn't like it. (Too rough) I swear they were there last time I rode, which was last year. (That, or I'm crazy.)
The glow stripes were removed durring the last refurb because it have off too much light.
By far this one should be going to Disneyland. The ride is far superior in design, feeling, and other aspects. One of my favorite things at this one is the ride vehicles.
WDW all the way! DL version didn't do it for me!
DL one is better for the on-board music and especially for the Halloween overlay. Paris has the absolute worst of all the Space Mountains because it is so rough your head gets knocked around for most of the ride. It is very poorly designed and laid out. Paris also stripped out the great Jules Verne themeing when they redesigned it.
WDW = Better seats. (Way comfortable. I want to buy one of these as a chair for my office.)
It's been about 13 years since I was last in Disneyland, and I got to ride WDW's Space Mountain as recently as two weeks ago, so I am comparing slightly different iterations of the rides, but I have to say that it is a really tough call for me. If I had to, though, I would give the nod to Disneyland.
I can't comment on DL as I have only been to Orlando and Paris, but out of those two I would def say WDW. The one at Paris gives you stinking headache and the queue is not up to WDW standards.
Magic Kingdom ...
I see this is a close one, WDW is better for the overall ride experience, but I like the Halloween stuff at Disneyland
I voted for Disney World's. I agree with several others that Florida's track is more unpredictable. It seemed to me that whereas WDW's Space had numerous unexpected drops making for a more wild experience, DL's felt I was going straight (I now realize trhat the ride is spiraling downward but I'd rather have sudden dips).
This one was a very close decision for me. I love both versions. DL's is snazzy, and has all the bells and whistles, but MK's version has more of a thrill factor. It has more of a real "coaster in the dark" feel. I give a slight edge to MK's version, but the SM is a highlight of my vacation on either coast.
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