Peter Pan’s Flight at Disneyland is an absolutely charming dark ride that’s fun for the whole family. The line moves quickly. Even if it looks like there will be a small wait, I would say that you should definitely go ahead and get in line. This is especially true if you have a little one that really wants to try it out or loves the movie.
One of the most unique qualities about this ride is that instead of your ride vehicle being a car that travels along a track on the ground, you are actually suspended from the ceiling. You may watch others as they board and not think too much about this. But there’s something extra fun about being on a flight-based ride as opposed to a ride on the ground. It’s just enough of a difference in movement to offer that little extra something special.
The ride begins with a scene of the kid’s bedroom as they take flight and join Peter Pan on the way to Neverland, hence the name of the ride. From this point on, you loosely follow the chronological journey that the main characters share from the film, only from the flight perspective. The illusions in this ride aren’t sophisticated. But much like many other Disney rides, that doesn’t matter. Why? Because they’re effective and beautiful. They take you right back to childhood, when you were impressed with things like this before you were cynical.
The ride is colorful, full of great model work and creative lighting. It just has an extra special something. I’ve tried before to figure out exactly what that extra little oomph is, but I can’t seem to pinpoint it. Perhaps it’s that it’s tied to such a classic Disney cartoon. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s flight based, it could honestly be the music that’s played along with the ride soundtrack that brings up those sentimental feelings. But there’s just a peace about this ride.
That’s honestly what I think this ride has to offer over any of the other rides in the Fantasyland section. It’s strangely peaceful and mega-nostalgic. This is the ride, more than any other (with the exception of Pirates of the Caribbean and Dumbo the Flying Elephant) that you will see parents in line for with the specific purpose of having that first ride with their child.
I think it’s the fact that they know it will all feel real to their little one that makes the pull of this ride so strong. The illusions of size and proportion are real to the youngest kids and so I honestly think it’s just as much fun for the parents to watch them react as it is for the kids themselves to see it for the first time. I would, of course, recommend this ride to anyone. But don’t go to be impressed. There are plenty of thrill rides and live shows for that. Go to relax and regress, and by all means, take a kiddo.