2021 Disneyland Resort Refurbishment and Updates

The Disneyland Resort is always changing and that’s how Walt wanted it to be. He wanted his parks to be top-notch for every guest who walked through its gates. Thus it should come as no surprise that there are times when attractions and shows are not running at Disneyland due to refurbishments and updates.

These can be annoying, we get it. You plan the perfect vacation only to find out that Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is closed. While this can be unfortunate, it’s best to know ahead of time than to run to the attraction your first day and find out then that it’s not going to be open for you to ride.

Lamp post with weathervane

That’s why we’ve come up with this Refurbishment and Updates Guide for Disneyland. You can see what attractions are closed, why they’re closed, and when to expect them to be back open. A few notes however before we dive into what’s happening at the parks.

First, we try super duper hard to keep this updated as often as possible (May 1st, 2021) but sometime we fall behind. So we’re essentially saying don’t count on this 100% to determine what is current. You can do that with the Disneyland Resort app. It will tell you in real time what is closed and what is open in its calendar section. The only thing it’s missing is the why and when parts which we fill in here.

Backside of castle with square trees

Second, sometimes the “when will it reopen” changes because Disney is…unpredictable. So if there’s a date for the reopening of an attraction, it’s probably right or at least close, but not guaranteed. We’ve seen it go either way: sometimes they open earlier and sometimes they open later.

Third, just because an attraction or show is listed below doesn’t mean that it’s closed. We like to let guests see what has been done to attractions recently so they can look for the new updates while they’re there. So don’t freak out if you see your favorite attraction below. It may have just been updated and already open!

With those caveats out of the way, here’s the current Refurbishment and Updates for the Disneyland Resort by park:

Disneyland Park Refurbishment and Updates 2021

Haunted Mansion – This New Orleans Square attraction was updated while the park was closed due to COVID. The pet cemetery located at the front of the house has had several new props added for your viewing delight. As guests enter through the gates and wind past the horseless carriage, you’ll find the new additions on the right hand side.

Pet Cemetery in garden

Guests will also notice that the portrait hall just before loading onto the Doom buggies has been updated with a new portrait and props. The portrait features “April to December” and changes before your eyes.

Matterhorn Bobsleds – Currently closed for refurbishment. What are they doing? Who knows! This attraction is one of the most complicated ones to run due to its track system. They did a major refurbishment a few years ago but it looks like they are back at it again. The sleds were covered in tarps last we looked and there was no hope for a reopening anytime soon..

Matterhorn mountain surrounded by foliage

Peter Pan’s Flight – Currently open and taking guests to Neverland! While the park was closed Disney took the opportunity to update the queue with new railing and a semi-new queue route. It looks really good! Inside the attraction you’ll notice a new screen inside with animation. We’ll let you find it on your own!

Storybook Canal Boats – Another Fantasyland attraction that is currently receiving new queue railing. The wood looks amazing and was last seen getting fresh coats of sealer on. This attraction should open sometime after COVID restrictions are removed. We’d like to see it sooner but the queue and boats are a tight squeeze for guests which is hard when you have to social distance.

Man painting handrail at attraction

Snow White’s Enchanted Wish– This is the biggest refurbishment to come out of the park. We knew a while back that this attraction was going to be updated. And updated it is! It’s open and ready for guests to see it’s new storyline which is significantly better than the original one. 

Signage for Snow White attraction

Be sure to see our video of the new updates. We don’t expect this one to be closed for a while. Guests will enjoy new scenes, props and animatronics inside the attraction. Plus you’ll enjoy a much happier, makes sense sort of ending which we love.

The Jungle Cruise – We learned months ago that Disney would be updating this attraction to be more inclusive. It’s also receiving a new storyline for guests to enjoy. The attraction is currently closed and is anticipated to remain closed till mid-summer. Currently it’s queue is being used as a COVID queue for Indiana Jones Adventure next door.

Alberta Falls newspaper interview

When the attraction reopens there will be new scenes, animatronics, and new jokes for all the boys and girls. Backside of water? Yes, it will still be there. Trader Sam? Not so much but mentions of him will be so keep a lookout!

Mickey’s Toontown – There’s a gigantic fence blocking a section of Toontown! The announcement of this land receiving a Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway was exciting and that’s what’s currently underway. Disney has chosen to take the construction in Toontown lightheartedly as you can see in the image below.

Construction sign with Mickey and Minnie

The attraction is slated to open in 2022 and is adding a huge chunk of land to the existing area. All for the one attraction. It’s worth it. The area that’s closed is just shops so no big deal as of right now. All attractions are still currently running though this could change overtime.

Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters – Currently being refurbished on the inside including animatronics, props and vehicles. It’s been a long time coming and this attraction has been run ragged. Look for a mid-May to June reopening.

Disney California Adventure Park Refurbishment and Updates

Grizzly River Run – This attraction receives an annual refurbishment due to the fact that it’s based around running water and the rocks/wood need to be dealt with frequently. Last we check the water was running, the boats were floating and team trainings were happening. We expect this attraction to open any day now!

Waterfall with river boats

Ariel’s Undersea Adventure – Now open but was being worked on during A Touch of Disney. The front has been refurbished and so has the inside. Nothing crazy. Just new coats of paint and a fresh clean look!

Golden Zephyr – When is this attraction not closed? We’ve never understood why Disney hasn’t ripped this thing out yet because it’s closed all the time! Who can say why it’s closed this time but our last trip to the park showed it down. We’ve lost all hope..

Avengers Campus – It’s closed…because it hasn’t opened yet! Set for a June 4th opening date, Avengers Campus takes the place of “a bug’s land” and merges Guardians of the Galaxy into it. It will open with one new major attraction called WEB SLINGERS. If that wasn’t enough of a hint, the attraction is based around Spider-Man. Guests will have the opportunity to sling webs at spider-bots who have gotten loose. 

Avengers jet ship onto of building

We’ll have lots more news on this new land once it’s open. We don’t anticipate any closures for this new land anything soon once it opens.

Redwood Creek Challenge Trail – Closed for refurbishment as well as COVID (because of all the hands-on stuff). It should reopen in mid-summer assuming social distancing has gone away.

So that’s the currently list of Disneyland Refurbishment and Updates. Be sure to check this page frequently as it will be updated as statuses change.

For guests looking to plan a Disneyland Resort vacation we highly recommend you check-out some more of our guides. We have a tickets savings guide that can help you keep cash in your pocket when buying your legitimate, discounted tickets. We can also recommend some of the best hotels to stay in whether it’s on property or around Anaheim. Lastly, be sure to see our planning guide for up-to-date information on the resort. 

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