From the hit Pixar film to an underwater ride, the Finding Nemo Submarine at Disneyland is sure to delight fans of the animated classic.
About the Film
Finding Nemo (2003) is the endearing tale of an overprotective clownfish father’s search for his son, Nemo, who has been captured from the Great Barrier Reef to live in a dentist’s office fish tank. A favorite for kids and adults, fans of the film enjoy the fun underwater storytelling brought to life by the vocal talents of Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Brad Garrett, and Allison Janney.
Finding Nemo Submarine at Disneyland
Now guests of Disneyland theme park can experience the magic and fun of this underwater experience at the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage ride. Formerly the park’s Submarine Voyage ride which ran from 1959 until 1998, Disney Imagineers updated the existing submarine attraction — using the eight original subs and the ride’s track — to fit the Nemo theme. The Finding Nemo ride opened in Tomorrowland at Disneyland in June 2007.
Entering the Ride
Prior to entering the cave area of the queue, guests can see the animatronic seagulls from the film yelling out their signature “Mine! Mine! Mine!,” as well as waterfalls and beautifully landscaped plants that set the mood for this aquatic adventure.
Four lively yellow and blue subs can be boarded at the loading dock at the same time. Guests must walk down a narrow spiral staircase to reach the seats – 20 on each side, each with its own porthole. Riders will delight in the animated scenes of the movie’s characters projected into the water as they search for Nemo, who has left his class to explore with Squirt the turtle.
During the Ride
The Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage allows guests to experience being submerged under the “sea” to view a variety of underwater sights. Young riders will love seeing the coral reefs, a shipwreck and underwater volcano that erupts enough for sub riders to feel the after effects.
The total ride runs 12 minutes, as the captain (a recorded voice) instructs the crew and riders about the sites seen through the porthole windows. The submarines do not actually submerge, but guests are seated below the water level. Bubbles and the view of deep sea sights create the illusion that the sub has entered deeper water. At one point, the captain says the sonar hydrophones are activated to allow riders to hear the fish talking. Enter Nemo, Marlin (his dad), Dory (Marlin’s scatterbrained friend), and the sharks in an underwater animated adventure.
When visiting the Finding Nemo Submarine at Disneyland, keep in mind the following:
- Due to the nature of boarding 40 passengers into each submarine, Finding Nemo is not a fast-loading ride, so guests can expect very long wait times. Arriving early to wait in line or opting to visit the attraction just before the park closes are often the best bets.
- Guests should be aware of the steep, narrow spiral staircase leading into the ride. Proceed with caution, holding onto handrails and assisting children down the steps.
- If you are claustrophobic, you may not want to ride the submarine. There is limited space within the ride, which may feel confining to some riders.
- For those guests unable to ride, there is an “Observation Outpost,” a video booth that provides the same experience that the underwater riders are seeing – but on land.
More Pixar Attractions
Based on the popularity of Pixar’s animated films, it’s a no-brainer that many can be transformed into equally popular attractions with the same universal appeal as the Finding Nemo Submarine at Disneyland. A Bug’s Life is integrated into Disney’s California Adventure in “A Bug’s Land,” and Toy Story themed areas of both Disneyland and Disney World opened in 2007.