Left: One of the Friendship Watertaxis provides transportation for the EPCOT Resorts,
along the EPCOT Resort Lagoon. This
Watertaxi is leaving the Yacht Club Resort's Marina dock, with its elegant
and nautical-looking Lighthouse. Everybody
loves the idea of a Lighthouse. But, to a boat pilot, it is life itself,
especially when it's real dark on the lake, at night. The docks, and Boardwalks
are also lined with navigational lights and omni lights.
Left: There are now a total of (8 ) Watertaxis in all, built since
1982, and they also service the (5 ) nearby EPCOT Resort Hotels, and the
Disney Studios Theme Park, to the southwest. Each boat sports a different
roof color scheme. The colors were changed in 1996 to reflect the circa
1900's look of the new Disney Boardwalk Resort and pier.
Watertaxis traveling in the EPCOT Resorts Lagoon and docks
Watertaxis take guests to the Disney MGM Studios theme park
Above: During the middle of the day, there
are usually two watertaxis, operating within the World Showcase Lagoon, itself,
providing guests with boat transportation. One boat route connects guests
from Germany across to Mexico, and the other route can connect guests from
Morocco to the World Showcase Plaza. The International Gateway Dock
and Entrance Gates are located on the middle right side of this aerial photo.
It's between the United Kingdom and France Showcases. Of course, when it's
busier, during the peak times, more watertaxis are put online.
Right: One of the Friendship Watertaxis,
loading guests at the Germany Showcase dock. There are (4 ) T-shaped Watertaxi
Docks along the shores of the World Showcase Lagoon. In the past, there were
a few of the Doubledecker Omnibuses that circled around the World Showcase
Lagoon, and provide transportation to various points along the Promenade areas.
But this service has been discontinued due to the heavy volume of guests walking
along the World Showcase Promenade.
Each of the (8) Watertaxi has 2 Perkins 4 cyl 236ci
diesel engines... One for the drive engine and the
other for the generator. The propeller thrust can be directed around laterally
in a 360 degrees direction, to go forwards or in reverse. There's a
round knob on the ship's tiller, to grab and turn the tiller effortlessly,
so the EPCOT Watertaxis can be pivoted around, almost
on a dime. The guests are always fascinated by this
"sleigh of hand" maneuvering of the ship's tiller, the throttle,
and the boat. After that, the most embarassing thing
you can do is smack the boat, against the dock, too hard.
Aerial view of the EPCOT World
family taking the
to EPCOT. Good
time to breast feed the baby, along the way.
Here's watertaxi pilot Captain Bruce, creating three
"magic moments" with some female passenger guests, here at
Walt Disney World. There's Allie, Krissy, and Catherine.