Sunday Spotlight: Maelstrom

Sunday Spotlight: Maelstrom

Maelstrom was a ride that used to be found in the Norway Pavilion at Epcot. This flume attraction gave guests a taste of Norway. As guests floated through this attraction there was both myth and realistic elements of Norway portrayed. The attraction opened on July 5, 1988.

For this attraction guests boarded their boats and began the voyage in a dark tunnel and then a lift. The narrator can be heard saying, “You are not the first to pass this way. Nor shall you be the last. Those who seek the spirit of Norway face peril and adventure—but more often, find beauty and charm.” The boats then drift past different scenes of what Norway looked like during its Viking days. These scenes are imagined through the lens of the mythical Norwegian stories and the villages reflect this.

Next, the riders find themselves floating into a marsh. There, the guests find themselves facing a three-headed troll and Nokken. The trolls are angered by the boat trespassing. The trolls use magic to push the boat backward. As the boat coasts backward it pasts scenes of nature in Norway that includes polar bears and then a little forest. The boat suddenly stops as it reaches the top of the waterfall (used to be able to be seen from outside the attraction).

After stopping at the top of the waterfall, the boat changes direction once again. Guests found themselves plummeting forward down a 28 flume into the North Sea. Guests now find themselves in modern-day Norway as they pass an oil rig before arriving in a small fishing village. Upon exiting the boat, there was a brief video about Norway that could also be watched.

Maelstrom was an attraction that, while a bit corny, was also quite fun to experience when visiting Epcot. The attraction closed on October 5, 2014, to make way for Frozen Ever After. While Maelstrom no longer can be found in Epcot, its memory continues on for those who used to ride it and love it. What did you think of it?

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