Thank goodness no one was hurt!
October 5, 2019 UPDATE!
Only 6 days after the grand opening, there was a major incident on the Skyliner gondola system tonight.
Expect the system to be down for investigation all next week.
The cast member did not hit the Emergency Stop Button as trained.
Accident happened at the Riviera station.
October 6, 2019: System is down today.
September 29, 2019: Opening Day photos
September 29, 2019: Opening ceremony launching new Skyliner gondola system at Disney World.
On September 29, 2019, Disney Skyliner gondolas took flight and officially began transporting guests around Walt Disney World Resort.
The wait lines have not been too bad this morning.
Perfect sunny day for Skyliner launch. (They do operate in the rain.)
Free Disney pins for resort guests at Art of Animation and Caribbean Beach.
Skyliner Christmas ornament, $28
Disney Skyliner Gondolas video: Disney Skyliner Takes Flight
The dawn of a new era in Disney World transportation is finally here!
Take a first look of how it is riding inside the gondola: First Ride on Gondola
The gondolas have great treetop views of the parks! Yes, the Skyliner windows open, but there’s no AC in the cabins. Could be very hot to ride these in the summer!
We’ve been closely watching the construction of the gondola system for about a year now.
Running on more than six miles of cable, the gondolas will travel at about 11 mph, giving guests a bird’s eye view of Walt Disney World Resort’s lakes, roads, woods, and Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios parks.
Exterior of decorated gondola cabin.
The typical ride lasts between five to 15 minutes as gondolas travel from 15 feet up to about 60 feet in the air.
“There are fabulous property views from above,” said Thomas Mazloum, a Disney senior vice president who oversees transportation and resorts.
The Disney Skyliner gondola system consists of 300 gondolas. The gondolas will carry enough Disney guests to roughly match the capacity of its monorail trains, company officials said.
Hard, unpadded wooden benches inside. 😦
Inside a gondola, twin wooden benches can carry up to 10 people. The interior is wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair. Handicapped gondolas carry 6 people.
On social media, some theme park followers have criticized the lack of air conditioning in the gondolas. But Mazloum argued the ride is “absolutely comfortable.”
“We have specifically designed them with the Florida climate in mind,” he said, pointing to reflective windows that block out the sunlight and the mesh screens on both sides to bring in a breeze. The gondolas will run at a brisk 11 mph.
Some gondola cabins will be decorated in plain colors, like a vibrant teal or purple, while the other gondolas will feature characters from Disney movies and attractions.
On our last visit, we got to see the progress on the new Disney Skyliner gondola system, especially at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
A Disney Skyliner transfer station at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Skip the parking hassle and take the gondola from your resort!
The gondolas mostly ride about 25 feet above the ground.
Gondola transfer station at DHS is ready.
One last task: Safety First!
Practicing gondola evacuations over water.
It would be exciting to do this! A bonus ride!
July 12, 2019: Some photos of Reedy Creek Fire Dept. practicing zip line rescues over water from the new gondola system ahead of grand opening in September.
September 5, 2019: All the gondolas were removed from their cablelines and stored over at the Caribbean Beach Resort ahead of the high winds expected from Hurricane Dorian.
09/05/19: All the new Skyliner cars have been removed from the cable system and are being stored over at the Caribbean Beach Station this week because of Hurricane Dorian.
The map below shows how the two theme parks (Epcot and DHS) and four resorts (Caribbean Beach, Boardwalk Resort, and Pop Century/Art of Animation Resorts) will be connected.
Outline of how the gondolas will connect the four resorts to the two parks.
The yellow squares on the map feature the gondola stations/stops while the blue squares signify the L-turns to change direction. The orange lines detail the cable routes the gondola cars will travel.
The high speed (11 mph) gondolas connect:
Epcot France to Disney’s Boardwalk Resort
Disney’s Boardwalk Resort to Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort to Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort to Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
The Boardwalk Resort is just to the right on this photo.
We’re most excited about the possibility of the Epcot France gondola connecting to Disney’s Boardwalk Resort!
Epcot France on a lovely spring day.
The new high speed gondola Skyliner transportation system transports guests a good distance across the vast WDW property in under 15 minutes, a huge improvement over the current bus transportation system, which takes 45 minutes to over an hour during peak times to get between the four points.
The gondolas have great treetop views of the parks!
For now, you still have to take the monorail from the Magic Kingdom over to Epcot to catch the Skyliner.
We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.
Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.
Adventures in the Animal Kingdom
Two Girls and a Mouse Tale
If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/
Have a magical day!
Two Disney Sisters