I was fortunate enough to be visiting Disney World when the Skyliner officially opened on September 29. I had originally hoped to stay at one of the resorts where the Skyliner has a station, I couldn\’t get a reservation at a price point I desired. Instead, we took the bus from Magic Kingdom to Caribbean Beach, so we could try it out! The station at Caribbean Beach isn\’t as centrally located as I would\’ve liked. I guess I had pictured it being easy walking distance from the central part of the resort, but instead, it\’s closer the entrance and far from some of the sections. I ended up having to get off at one of their bus stops, and then waiting for the internal bus, but finally we arrived. At this station, there are three different lines: Pop Century & Art of Animation, Hollywood Studios, and Epcot. The line for Epcot was pretty backed as that particular line was temporarily stopped. We got into the line for Pop Century and Art of Animation. There were a few people in front of us, but the gondolas load so quickly, that we never even stopped, hopped right onto our own gondola and were on our way!
My initial reaction was how quiet they were. So smooth and peaceful. The views were amazing and as we got closer to Art of Animation, I loved seeing the resort from the air! The station here is very convenient to both Pop Century and Art of Animation as it was built in the lake between the two with access to the station via the bridge over Hourglass Lake.
We got off, got right back in line, and took the Skyliner back to Caribbean Beach. So breezy this direction! There are three main vents–a small one at the top of the window opposite the door, three long ones above one of the benches, and two long ones above the other bench.
When we arrived at Caribbean Beach, we got in line for Hollywood Studios. Lots of people were headed there, but, again, they load so quickly that the line barely slowed down and soon we were on another gondola–this time with a lovely family.
When we got off the Skyliner at Hollywood Studios, we opted to take a bus back to our resort. The lines for the Skyliner at Hollywood Studios were considerably longer and stretched out of the queue and out into the hot sun. I hope they work out that problem soon! I think it was aggravated by the delay of the Epcot line since normally the gondolas move quickly.
Each gondola can hold up to 10 people. You don\’t have to fold up strollers, but with a larger stroller, you might not be able to get all 10 people on. They have quite a few handicapped accessible gondolas. These can hold a wheelchair or scooter and an additional 6 people. One brilliant design they created was a separate loading area for those needing extra time like those in a scooter or wheelchair. Once these are loaded, they have the ability to put that particular gondola into the line with the other gondolas causing very little slowdown to the whole process. It was pretty amazing to watch!
There is plenty of space in these. This is my 14-year old son sitting in the middle of one of the benches with plenty of room to share! These are easy to get into and out of; very small gap between the boarding area and the gondola and it\’s very slow so we didn\’t feel rushed to get in even when there were 6 of us in the last one!
Overall, I was very pleased. They had a hiccup during the second week of operation, and while it may not be the last, I did think it was a great mode of transportation and a great addition to the parks!
Susan Burks is a military wife and a homeschooling mom to a 15 year old \”junior Disney expert\”! In addition to many Disney World trips, Susan has done eleven Disney cruises, two Disneyland trips, two trips to Aulani (Disney Resort & Spa in Hawaii), Disney\’s Vero Beach, and Disney\’s Hilton Head Island! You can contact Susan at email@example.com.