The enchanting worlds our favorite Disney characters breathe in may seem all but a pipe dream, but did you know that these dreamy settings are often adapted from real-world locations? If you’re a diehard Disney fan looking for your next adventure, here are the 7 real-world Disney places you can actually visit. Genie lamps and poisoned apples don’t seem that far-fetched anymore.
|Peter Pan with the Darling Children featuring Big Ben (Disney)|
|The actual Big Ben in Westminster, London (Lloyd Morgan)|
Remember when Peter Pan took the trio of Darling children on their first flight around London before landing on Big Ben to locate their way to Neverland? Iconic not only to the 1953 Walt Disney Peter Pan film, Big Ben is also widely recognised as the national timepiece of London. Take a bus tour around Big Ben at nightfall and who knows, you might catch a glimpse of a Lost Boy.
2. Mulan (The Forbidden City, Beijing)
|The Emperor’s Palace in Mulan (Disney Wikia)|
|The Forbidden City in Beijing, China (T Chu)|
The emperor’s palace in Disney’s Mulan was inspired by the Forbidden City in Beijing, China. Forbidden City was an imperial palace home to the emperors from the Ming to Qing dynasty. Now a museum popular with tourists worldwide, Forbidden City was set as the site of victory for Mulan against the Huns. relive the moment by stepping foot into the palace yourself.
3. Beauty And The Beast (Colmar, France)
|Belle’s Hometown in Beauty and The Beast (Disney)|
|Colmar Town in Alsace, France (Fronzie D)|
Seemingly taken straight out of a fairytale, Colmar is perhaps the prettiest town you’ll ever find in the Alsace region of northeastern France. With its charming cobblestone walkways and half-timbered houses, any child would be able to tell that Belle’s hometown in Beauty and Beast was largely inspired by Colmar. Time to put Alsace on your travel bucket list.
4. Finding Nemo (Sydney Harbour, Australia)
|Sydney Harbour featured in Finding Nemo (Fairfax Digital)|
|The actual Sydney Harbour in Australia (Adrian Gigante)|
As seen in the movie Finding Nemo, Marlin and Dory surfaced from the waters of Port Jackson — in full view of Sydney Harbour’s majestic skyline. How can we possibly miss out Sydney Opera House’s distinctive sail-like architecture?
Looking to get a better scenery than the pair did? Join KKday on a climb to the top of Sydney Harbour’s bridge for a bird’s eye view of the city. Yes, you heard us right — there’s finally a part of reality better than Disney.
5. Aladdin (Taj Mahal, India)
|The Sultan’s Palace of Agrabah in Aladdin (Disney Wikia)|
|The Taj Mahal in India (vil.sandi)|
The creatives behind the Sultan’s palace in Aladdin had obviously drawn their inspiration from Taj Mahal in Agra, India. Bearing more than just architectural similarities, Aladdin’s storyline was rumored to have been influenced by the fact that Taj Mahal is not a palace, but a mausoleum for the the Mughal emperor’s wife. In Aladdin, the Sultan is portrayed to be a widow whilst Princess Jasmine sees the palace as a prison.
Uncover the truth for yourself with a day tour to Taj Mahal in India. What better place to immerse yourself in the wizardry of genie lamps and magic carpets than Taj Mahal itself?
6. Tangled (Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival, Taiwan)
|The iconic lantern scene in Tangled (Disney)|
|The Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival in Taiwan (Jirka Matousek)|
The iconic sky lantern scene in Tangled got us wondering if Rapunzel and Flynn had shared their endearing moment at Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival. A sight too beautiful for words, Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival is an annual event in Taiwan where participants release a paper lantern carrying their written wishes and blessings into the sky. Disney always has a good eye for the most alluring sights in this world, don’t they?
7. Up (Angel Falls, Venezuela)
|The Paradise Falls in Up (Disney)|
|The Angel Falls in Venezuela (ollie harridge)|
Established as the Paradise Falls in adventure film, ‘Up’, the magnificent waterfall is better known as Angel Falls in real-world Venezuela. Distinguished as the world’s highest waterfall with an impressive plunge of 979 meters, we’re not surprised the legendary Angel Falls made it to the big screen with Disney.