Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes Critter Country Disneyland
Take a guided canoe trip on a voyage around Tom Sawyer’s Island and the Rivers of America – but you’ll have to do your own paddling!
Tucked along the edge of the Rivers of America next to the Hungry Bear restaurant is a small boat dock from which the Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes embark and disembark.
Each canoe holds 20 guests, two per row. Before boarding, take a paddle from the box on the dock, either child- or adult-sized. Once everyone is aboard and seated, guides dressed in Frontier attire will conduct a short lesson on how to hold the paddle, and how to (try to) paddle in a somewhat coordinated fashion so that the canoe will actually go somewhere!
Along the Rivers of America the guides will point out some of the sights along the way, like Pirate’s Lair and the Indian chief on horseback. It’s kind of like the Frontierland version of the Jungle Cruise… except the guides have bigger muscles.
This is the only ride in Disneyland that is guest-powered — if no one paddles, then it turns into a pretty long ride! Otherwise the length of the ride varies depending on how fast or slow the paddlers are, and how much other traffic is on the Rivers of America – those pesky sailing ships and riverboats have right-of-way. Expect it to take 5-10 minutes.
This attraction is open seasonally — which generally means it runs on busier days in the warmer times of the year, but not on rainy days. Since there is so much variability in the amount of time it takes to load/unload and paddle around the river, it can be very hard to judge just how long the wait will be — a queue that looks fairly short could take 45-60 minutes.
Unless you’re a small child, “just going along for the ride” without doing any paddling is frowned upon, and will earn the offender some well-deserved ribbing from the guides and fellow guests.
There’s no height requirement.
These are fairly stable watercraft, and not “tippy canoes” at all, but guests may NOT stand except when getting on and off.
Wheelchair and ECV users enter through the exit near the lower level of the Hungry Bear restaurant. You must be able to get in and out of the canoe.
The closest restrooms are located on the lower level of the Hungry Bear restaurant.
Kids are permitted to ride, but some may be too small or uncoordinated to paddle.
There are no characters associated with this attraction, but the Pooh characters have regularly scheduled Meet and Greet sessions in nearby Critter Country.
The Hungry Bear restaurant is right next to the canoe landing, and there’s a fruit cart near the entrance.
Pioneer Mercantile in Frontierland offers wilderness-themed souvenirs such as Davy Crockett caps and Western style character merchandise.
Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes opened in May 1971 — a redesign of the Indian War Canoes attraction that opened in 1956.
The canoes closed suddenly in October 1998, with the rumor that they were closed permanently, but they reopened the following June.
In 2016-2017, all Rivers of America attractions were closed while the river was re-routed in support of the construction of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. The canoes re-opened on July 29, 2017.
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