The Disney Park Secrets You Never Knew

There’s a reason so many families visit Disney parks every year. The fun, imagination, and chance to snap a picture of your child and his favorite Disney character are just a handful of reasons the conglomerate has drawn millions of visitors since its opening. After all, there’s magic around every corner at each Disney park. But did you know the happiest place on Earth has a few secrets of its own? Disney parks are oozing with little-known facts, and we’re here to give you the rundown on all things Disney.

1. Main Street’s cookie smell is fake

A Main Street that smells like cookies? Yes, please. At Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, they’ve mastered a way to engineer just that. Turns out, the park artificially pumps the smell of freshly baked cookies onto Main Street. Done by way of the utilidors, or tunnels, other scents also have been engineered to match certain areas and attractions.

2. The network of underground tunnels

You might have heard there’s an entire network of underground tunnels. And quite a bit goes on down there. According to Theme Park Tourist, these tunnels — the utilidors — house major computer and digital controls, golf cart-style electric vehicles, and “Kingdom Kutters,” the hair salon created solely for staff members to ensure they matched Disney’s clean-cut image.

So have you ever wondered how this underground network got its start? Legend has it Walt Disney once saw a character walking through the wrong section of the park — a section he didn’t belong in — and was infuriated at just how unauthentic the move was. Thus, the utilidors were born, so no staff member would ever be caught doing something that awful again.

3. The flags lining Main Street aren’t technically real

Lining Main Street are the nation’s flags. But upon closer inspection, you’ll notice they’re not technically American. According to Travel + Leisure, it all has to do with traditional flag regulations. Because they’re supposed to be raised, lowered, and flown at half-staff, Disney Imagineers had to do some creative thinking in order to get around those rules. Their solution? Create flags that are missing a star or a stripe. Additionally, the publication notes the flagpoles are actually lightning rods, which serve to protect guests during storms.

4. The color of Mickey’s shorts is off-limits

Although you can buy just about anything at Disney parks around the world — most of which is probably a huge waste of money — there’s one thing Disney plans on keeping a secret forever. When you think of Mickey Mouse, you probably think of those iconic red shorts of his. So it’s iconic that the exact hue of the color is proprietary and will never be made public. If you do choose to go nuts at one of the many souvenir shops, just know that’s the closest you’ll ever be to getting your hands on those famous shorts of his.

5. Animal Kingdom uses tricks to lure the animals

If you plan a trip to Magic Kingdom, you expect to see some pretty incredible wildlife. And thanks to the staff, that’s exactly what you’ll get. Looking to spot some gorillas in action? Just sit back, relax, and be amazed, as staff shoot raisins out of cannons, Travel + Leisure says. Additionally, the elephants can be lured using their favorite treat: honey. And if you’re hoping to catch a glimpse of the lions, that’s easy enough. Turns out, the top rock they’re often spotted on is air conditioned, keeping them nice and content.

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