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Disney Reveals More Details of ‘Journey of Water’ Attraction Coming to EPCOT

Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana

The upcoming “Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana” attraction at EPCOT is taking shape, and Walt Disney World has revealed some more design details.

About the Attraction

“Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana” is a walking attraction that will allow guests to explore and engage with water as it travels from our skies to our oceans and back again.

It is inspired by the Walt Disney Animation Studios 2016 animated movie “Moana,” and the title character’s fierce determination to protect her environment, especially with her strong bond with water throughout the story.

Sculpting Moana

Since “Moana” inspires the attraction, it’s only natural to see the characters and more film related images incorporated into the design.

A great example of this is a sculpture of Moana herself, which will be positioned proudly celebrating water’s arrival to the ocean.

As part of Disney’s design process, Imagineers create models, mock-ups, and maquettes (scale models) to bring beloved characters and stories into the parks in sometimes unexpected ways.

Here is a behind-the-scenes photo of Principal Dimensional Designer, Jim Towler, sculpting the foam scale model of Moana for this attraction.

Jim Towler sculpting the foam scale model of Moana

Once the pose of the character is defined, sculptors will add detail and texture until the emotional expression of the carving is just right.

Then others will do a paint study and often create full-scale samples to test final materials and carving techniques.

This lengthy process ensures the production and creative vision for the experience align in the finished design.

The Heart of Te Fiti

Mountain-like rock forms will soon mark the entrance to the attraction, and the spiral representing the Heart of Te Fiti will be “carved” into them as seen in the sample below.

Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana

Speaking of rocks, Imagineer Zack Riddley spoke about creating these sculptures on his Instagram:

“The craft of creating rockwork is a blend of art and science, and seeing this carving and sculpting progress live is one of the things I love most about my role as an Imagineer.”

Here are a couple of photos of the creating process for this attraction:

Creating Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana
Creating Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana

Where Will It Be Located?

“Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana” will be located in the newly designated World Discovery neighborhood on the border with the World Nature neighborhood, replacing much of what used to be Innoventions West.

Concept art was released in May 2022, showing the attraction’s location. Top left is “Spaceship Earth,” and bottom left is “The Seas with Nemo & Friends.”

The attraction can be seen bottom center of this art rendering:

EPCOT - World Nature art rendering

When Will It Open?

At this time, there isn’t a set opening date for “Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana,” but it looks like it’ll be sometime early 2023.

When we hear something more definite, we’ll definitely let you know.

Are you excited to check out “Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana”? Let us know in the comments.

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