Dinosaur Vs. Indiana Jones Adventure: Disneyland Vs. Disney World

Typically for Disneyland Vs. Disney World we compare two of the same attraction, but today we are doing things a little differently. We are comparing Dinosaur and Indiana Jones Adventure, two rides that share an identical track layout and ride system, but that is about where the similarities end.

Both of these rides use an identical track layout, done to cut costs as they were being built with the same system at about the same time, but the theming is an entirely different story.

We are going to take you through the ride from start to finish and compare how each element of the attraction compares to its counterpart.

Queue Line

This is probably the easiest to decide. The winner is clearly Indiana Jones Adventure.

Dinosaur Dino Institute Disney's Animal Kingdom Disney World

Dinosaur's queue line recreates a fossil museum at the fictional Dino Institute, featuring various exhibits and a show narrated by Bill Nye. It is a nice queue that is well decorated, but the problem is its competition.

The queue line for Indiana Jones Adventure is quite possibly the best that Disney has ever designed in any park for any ride. The line had to be about a half-mile long to reach the ride building, and Disney used this to make an incredibly detailed journey through temple ruins.

There are so many details in this queue we can't possibly go through them all. From a unique language to hide hidden messages throughout the line, to interactive elements, to some of the best-designed queue rooms in any ride, there really is no way any other line can live up to this. 

Winner: Indiana Jones Adventure


Both of these rides feature preshows, with Indiana Jones featuring a continuous preshow and Dinosaur featuring a more traditional preshow room.

Indiana Jones Adventure's preshow shows Sallah giving you a guide on how to survive the eye of Mara, the idol of the temple you are about to explore, with safety information given throughout it in a fun creative way.

Dinosaur features a preshow that tells you about the time rover you will be getting on before your mission is hijacked by Dr. Seeker in an attempt to save an iguanodon in the moments before the meteor that killed the dinosaurs. It is comical and a perfect intro to the attraction you are about to experience.

Overall the more traditional preshow beats the ongoing one played in a room of the line.

Winner: Dinosaur

The Ride

So we are going to take you through a few key moments in the ride and compare what each version does at the same point in the layout before comparing the entire theming of both attractions.

Mara/ Time Travel

The first incline of the ride is used very differently.

In Indiana Jones Adventure you are given a projection mapping infused introduction to Mara, where you are then cursed and sent into the rest of the ride.

In Dinosaur, you enter the time travel chamber featuring a variety of practical effects including lights, and fog to make you feel like you are floating through time. You starting a red scientific lab before following a green light through time and end up in the world of Dinosaurs.

This used to be a tie, but permanently retired effects in one of these makes the other win by a slight margin.

Winner: Dinosaur

Bridge Room/ Dino Jungle

The next major segment of the ride is completely different in both versions.

In Indiana Jones Adventure you enter a massive temple room with a rickety bridge, fire, and an idol attempting to kill you.

In Dinosaur, there are instead narrow jungle pathways where you come across more dinosaur animatronics.

Both effects work in their individual attractions, but the reveal of the temple alone, and the ability to see other ride vehicles ahead of you barely avoiding the obstacles you are about to face make one a vastly superior experience.

Winner: Indiana Jones Adventure

Dart Room/ Chasing Carnotaurus

This scene takes place in a small room, meaning it needs to make creative use of a small space.

In Indiana Jones Adventure this scene is a dart room featuring 2D blacklight paintings and air effects to feel like you are narrowly avoiding poison darts being shot at you from the walls.

In Dinosaur, this features a single animatronic of the Carnotaurus chasing after you and running alongside the ride vehicle.

One of these effects feels lazy compared to the rest of the ride, while the other is one of the most impressive effects in the entire ride, making this choice an easy one.

Winner: Dinosaur

Ball Scene/ Meteor Strike Time Travel

This final scene was intentionally designed to create one effect for Indiana Jones Adventure.

In Indiana Jones Adventure this perfectly recreates the iconic ball scene from the original Indiana Jones film. It truly feels like this ball is about to fall on top of you, while adding a final thrilling drop to the attraction.

In Dinosaur this is a final encounter with the Carnotaurus as a static figure before going into the same time travel effect from the start of the ride in reverse. It is the least impressive of the Carnotaurus figures in the ride, making the ending a bit anti-climactic, especially compared to a perfectly recreated moment of cinematic history.

Winner: Indiana Jones Adventure

Overall Theming

Both of these rides attempt to recreate incredible different environments.

Dinosaur creates a jungle filled with incredibly lifelike dino animatronics but falls short in the jungle theming, which all too often is simply a black background with no theming at all.

Indiana Jones continues its elaborate temple theming extensively throughout the ride and it only falls short noticeably in one room. Its score builds excitement and suspense and doesn't let it fall for a moment. Several of its effects are unique and have never been replicated or matched. It is as impressive and immersive now as it was when it was built, and remains one of the best rides ever built by Disney.

Winner: Indiana Jones Adventure

Overall Winner

The clear winner is Indiana Jones Adventure. It is one of the best attractions of all time, and provides one of the most thrilling and immersive experiences ever created by Disney.