The final splash: Disney fans wait over 3 hours for last chance on Splash Mountain

Attraction being reimagined for Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

Crowds gather for Splash Mountain on its final day of operations at Magic Kingdom. Jan. 22, 2023 (Landon McReynolds, WKMG)

BAY LAKE, Fla. – The Briar Patch has now officially closed up for good at Walt Disney World.

Hundreds of Disney fans on Sunday flocked to the Magic Kingdom to see Brer Rabbit, Fox and Bear one last time before it’s reimagined to Tiana’s Bayou Adventure.

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Videos appeared to show a crowd of people running Sunday morning to be first in line for Splash Mountain. Throughout the day on Sunday, the wait times for Splash Mountain fluctuated with some wait times exceeding a 200-minute wait. Even the paid lighting lane service saw lines stretching out the attraction entrance.

Crowds gather for Splash Mountain on its final day of operations at Magic Kingdom. Jan. 22, 2023 (WKMG)

By the time the park closed Sunday night, the My Disney Experience app showed a 175-minute wait.

Splash Mountain at Disney's Magic Kingdom. Jan. 22, 2023 (WKMG)

Videos posted online appear to show the last riders and the attraction’s cast members splashing down for one final time.

Crowds gather for Splash Mountain on its final day of operations at Magic Kingdom. Jan. 22, 2023 (WKMG)

Splash Mountain opened in Magic Kingdom in 1992 and despite its history, it is considered one of the top attractions at the park. In 2020, the company announced Splash Mountain will change to Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. Splash Mountain is a themed attraction based on Song of the South, a 1946 live-action and animated film that has been criticized for the way it depicted race relations in a post-civil war era.

During Tiana’s Bayou Adventure guests will follow Tiana, Prince Naveen and Louis through the bayou as they prepare for a Mardi Gras celebration.

A first look at a new scene and some of the brand-new characters coming to Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. (Disney)

Last month, Disney Imagineers shared a rendering which gives audiences a glimpse into one of the all-new scenes of the attraction featuring Princess Tiana and everyone’s favorite trumpet-playing alligator, Louis.

The rendering also shows some of the new animal critters guests will see as they twist and turn around the bayou listening to zydeco music, a special blend of rhythm and blues that was born in Louisiana.

‘Tiana’s Bayou Adventure’ is expected to open at Magic Kingdom in 2024.

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About the Author:

Landon joined News 6 in 2017. He grew up in Southern Illinois and graduated from Southern Illinois University with a bachelors degree in TV and digital media. When he is not at work you can catch him at one of Orlando's theme parks or the beach. Before working at News 6 he worked for stations in Miami and Fort Myers.