When it comes to Walt Disney World, all four of their theme parks (and even their water parks) are just as musical as their movies. We’ve shared our love for Walt Disney World’s musical rides in the past, but even if you’re not familiar with Disney’s classic songs, the Orlando park has plenty to offer the music-obsessed. So, we’ve paired some of their best attractions with your taste in music—it’s like food pairings, but for the thrill-seeking music fan. Bring it on.
Classic rock, many have said, isn’t only about an era—it’s about a style. And few bands embody that style as well as Aerosmith, who also happen to have an incredible ride at Walt Disney World (called the Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, naturally). Located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it takes you on a lightning-fast limo ride to a sold-out show, recreating every classic rock fan’s dream—and it just happens to be packed with loud, loud guitars. No surprise the ride has become a Walt Disney World classic on par with a Joe Perry Gibson Les Paul.
If sprawling pastoral lands, ice-cold beer, and farm-tough pals are your bag, then the choice is clear: You can’t miss Test Track, an attraction presented by Chevrolet. If there’s anything you appreciate more than a beers-up Blake Shelton single, it’s your truck—and Test Track, located in Epcot, allows you to build a virtual truck, then take it for a test spin. Badass? You bet.
Digital music is often seen as the music of the future, and while no one can deny its ascendence, let’s be honest: The roots of the genre can be traced back to neo-classical and krautrock, before zooming through the warehouses of Chicago and Detroit, before eventually settling into the laptops of today. Indeed, electronic music—whether you’re talking underground techno or EDM—is an established modern classic, and if you’re a supporter of all things synthesized, don’t miss the retro-futuristic charm of the Magic Kingdom’s beloved Tomorrowland.
Yes, dubstep could be rolled into the electronic category above, but with one key distinction: If you’re into modern dubstep, you live for the drop. And if we’re talking drops, we can’t leave Space Mountain out of the conversation. Though the ride only reaches speeds of 27 miles per hour—and believe us, other rides go faster—when you’re strapped in, the ride feels a lot faster, emphasized by gut-rattling drops. As any dubstep fan knows, the size of a drop is contextual—and Space Mountain gets it. Like Tomorrowland, find the ride in the Magic Kingdom.
Look at a band like Mumford and Sons (or any of their progeny), and the message is clear: These are dudes who want to get back to simpler times, when rustic workwear—and rustic music—ruled the day. If you agree with Marcus Mumford and co., then Tom Sawyer Island, in the Magic Kingdom, is for you. Indeed, the isle lets you get away from the hassles of modern life: It’s only accessible by boat, it’s a gorgeous, colonial-esque island that allows you to explore at your own pace. Delightful.
Dedicated fans of ambient music will tell you that it might seem reductive at first—but dig into the ethereal bliss, and you’ll find plenty of depth and musicianship. The same logic applies to Mission: Space, a ride that seems calming at first, but offers you the mind-melting, out-of-body experience of space. You’ll remember the sensations of space travel for days, largely thanks to the simulated g-force of Mission: Space. Find it in Epcot.
At first glance, Walt Disney World doesn’t offer much to those inclined towards the dark ‘n’ dour. Still, there’s plenty on offer for the Bauhaus and Killing Joke-inclined, beginning with the Haunted Mansion, located in the Magic Kingdom. A sprawling estate filled with ghosts, goblins, and plenty of other surprises, it’s frightening without being explicitly gory—just like the best horror movies.
When we talk about the things that define metal, we often talk about its speed and its heaviness. (Occasionally, we talk about valkyries, too.) Runoff Rapids offers both in spade, with the added bonus of being a water ride. Strap yourself into an inner tube—because hey, even metalheads need some vitamin D sometimes—for the hardest-charging, most exhilarating water ride in the park. Hit up Runoff Rapids in Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park. Thank us later.