Enchanted Tiki Room
Opened: Originally opened October 1, 1971, reopened “Under New Management” April 5, 1998, reopened back to original theme on August 15, 2011
Location: Adventureland to the left of Sunshine Tree Terrace and behind Aladdin’s Magical Carpets
Extra Magic Hours: No
Type: Animatronic theater show
Similar To: Country Bear Jamboree
Scary Factor: Low. There is a short scene with lightning, thunder, and momentary darkness near the end of the show, but it shouldn’t overwhelm most kids. If your child is easily frightened then this may be another to skip, but everyone over the age of six or so should be fine.
What to Expect: The Enchanted Tiki Room is another animatronics theater show. Luckily, this one is nicely air-conditioned and the seats are mostly comfortable. José, Michael, Pierre and Fritz serve as your aviary hosts as they introduce the various characters and musical sequences. The show is lighthearted and intended to be funny, though a lot of the jokes seem to fall flat with contemporary audiences.
Where to Sit: Sit in the last row towards the center of the theater. Because most of the “action” occurs overhead, guests sitting in the front will have to crane their necks to see what’s happening overhead. The side of the theater you sit on is less important because the scenes are more or less the same on each side.
Exit: You’ll exit through doors near where you entered in an orderly fashion with Alddin’s Magical Carpets directly in front of you. Because the theater is rarely more than half full, it only takes a minute to exit. If you’d like to take pictures in the empty theater, do so quickly while the other guests exit.
When To Go: Visit in the afternoon, evening, or whenever you need a bit of a break. Because the theater is rarely full (even during Easter or Christmas), there’s no hurry to get here. The show is air-conditioned and relaxed, which makes it a good place to get out of the heat and away from the crowds.
Expect to Wait: Only as long as it takes for the next show to begin. At the entrance, you’ll see a sign that indicates when the next show will begin. Get in line about three minutes early so you don’t miss the standing pre-show.
Length: 10 minutes
The Fire: On January 12, 2011, a small fire (purportedly) broke out in the attic of the Tiki Room. It is thought that it destroyed some of the audio-animatronics, including Iago, though that was never confirmed by the company. No guests were injured. The attraction then went down for a lengthy refurbishment. It reopened without the “Under New Management” shtick and returned closer to the original 1963 Disneyland version.
Commentary: While there’s no doubt that Enchanted Tiki Room is a classic Disney attraction, it doesn’t have quite the same effect on audiences in 2012 and beyond than it did in the 1960s and 70s. It is a perfectly enjoyable show, but most kids don’t enjoy it much Comfortable and air-conditioned it remains recommended, but not a “must do” for most guests, adults or otherwise. It’s also worth experiencing to see how far Disney has come from the original attractions.