Magic Kingdom’s Secret Passages - Orlando / Florida Guide
Florida Guide > Magic Kingdom
The Magic Kingdom utility corridors (known as Utilidors) are a chain of tunnels which have been built directly underneath the Magic Kingdom theme park. They were originally built so that waste materials could easily be removed and to also provide hidden admittance to certain parts of the park. This is very handy for the characters and cast members when they need to travel to another section of the park without being seen by members of the public. It is also a lot quicker! Cast members travel the tunnels on foot or by Pargos (these are battery operated and resemble golf carts).
The Utilidors are not only a series of tunnels but are also dressing rooms, costume departments and cafeterias for cast members. The best way to describe them is a “world beneath another a world”. Also, contained within the tunnels are a hairdressers and rehearsal rooms. Once a cast member leaves the tunnels they are considered “Onstage”.
When Walt Disney World was being built, Bay Lake was drained and dredged out. A huge amount of earth was dug up from Bay Lake and The Seven Seas Lagoon and this earth was used to raise Magic Kingdom about fourteen feet. In so doing, this created a nine acre underground system called Utilidors. So in fact, the tunnels are actually at ground level whilst the parts of Magic Kingdom that guests visit are on the second and third levels.
Many years ago when taking The Keys to the Kingdom Tour, part of the tour was to visit the Utilidors. I do know that The Keys to the Kingdom Tour is still available but I do not know whether it still includes a visit to the secret tunnels. Guests were taken to the make-up department and the hairdressers which is called Kingdom Kutters. Also on view was the costume store where each cast member has their own ID card which is scanned and the cast member receives their particular costume. When they have finished with the costume, at the end of their shift, they put them in special laundry bins after scanning them by holding them up to the wall scanner which records that their particular costume has been returned.
So, if you ever see a cast member or character disappearing through a door in Magic Kingdom you will be able to say that you know where they are going!
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