The Return of Tom Sawyer Island at Disneyland

Disneyland has reopened Tom Sawyer’s Island after a lengthy refurbishment.


Tom Sawyer Island has been an attraction since the early days of the park.  Though not open on opening day, it is still considered a classic attraction at Disneyland.  Much of it remained the same until Fantasmic! premiered, when several show elements were built.  Pirate’s Lair introduced some new elements in 2007, and even a name change: Pirate’s Lair on Tom Sawyer Island.

Throughout the island are exploration caves, bridges, tunnels, and fun devices to play around with.  It all is centered on the famous Mark Twain book.


The island has been closed for over a year as part of refurbishment and general construction because of the upcoming Star Wars Land.

The good news is that not much has changed with Tom Sawyer Island.  It remains the same Pirate’s Lair version as before the long closing time.  The most significant change is the color of the building on the front of the island.  Most of the changes are touch ups around the island to get it looking pristine again.  New foliage lines the river banks.  Signs have more brightness to them.  Even a skeleton pirate has some vibrancy in him again.

It’s nice to see that not much has changed for this great attraction.  It keeps some nostalgia to it.  I know the Pirate’s Lair was added, but there is a lot that is the same from its original version.  You can look up and see Tom and Huck’s treehouse at the top of the island.  You can still explore little nooks and crannies of rock caves.  The pontoon bridge is still intact for daring walks.

The reopening also occurred on the anniversary.  It was June 16, 1956 that the attraction first opened to guests.  So, it’s very fitting to have it come back on this day.

What do you think of how Tom Sawyer Island looks now?

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Murray the Bellhop

Murray the Bellhop

Murray the Bellhop covers Knott's Berry Farm, Marvel, and also helps with DAPs Magic's Disneyland coverage. He also hosts DAPscast and helps produce Geeks Corner.






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