The Disney company owns a huge section of land in Florida. Much of it is used as a park or resort, but there are a few undeveloped areas. Even lesser know, there are some areas that were once a park and now completely abandoned. The two parks are Discovery Island- A natural habitat and wildlife preservation for exotic creatures- and River Country- an “old fashioned swimmin’ hole” waterpark.
Originally Treasure Island, Discovery Island closed in 1999 soon after Animal Kingdom opened, likely because there was no need for two wildlife based parks. Before it’s closure five Disney employees were charged with several counts of mistreating animals. There was even a cage in which nineteen vultures were left to die without food or water. I recommend you read Shane Perez’ blog post on his adventure into the abandoned park.
River Country opened in 1976 as Disney’s first water park, then closed in 2001. Walt Disney World has never given a reason for the park’s closure, however one employee says that one morning they had to delay opening the park due to an alligator in one of the pools. Another likely reason is the discovery of brain-eating amoebas found in the water. Being infected with this almost always leads to death.
Seeing these photos makes me think- if I were older, someone who had visited and enjoyed these parks, seeing them in this wretched state would depress me. These parks were once popular attractions. Now they sit in ruins. So what do you think Disney should do with the land?