The Vacation Kingdom of the World Map

Written by George Taylor. Posted in Disney, Features, The Disney Review

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Published on February 23, 2013 at 3:00 am with 8 Comments

George Taylor and Jeff Heimbuch rediscover a map that some of you will remember fondly. A Disney World to daydream about.

George: When the Contemporary Resort and the Polynesian Village Resort were opened, part of the decor was a massive wall-map of the Vacation Kingdom of the World. Most of us are familiar with the map as it was used in the various versions of the (1971-1975) Story of Walt Disney World Commemorative Edition (the giant, sort of D-shaped book). The map was 5′ X 4′ (60″ X 48″) and was printed on Masonite. They were framed and adhered to the wall. The story goes that crowbars were used to remove the maps from the wall, which is explains why they are so rare today.

Jeff: I actually used that same crowbar to steal one of those maps from the Disney Archives once. It truly IS a small world after all! Regardless, these maps are one of the most sought after items of early Walt Disney World history today. Anytime you see one on eBay, they are usually very pricey, and you need a second mortgage to purchase one. Thankfully, that is no longer the case!

George: I’ve always been obsessed with maps from Walt Disney World. Besides my first Walt Disney World book I bought in 1994, I’ve always held onto the maps from visits. As Jeff mentioned, the map that we’re looking at today is highly prized by collectors and enthusiasts. We were approached by Chad Lincicome from wdwmaps.com about a reproduction of the map that he is selling. We were both intrigued and eagerly agreed to order copies and try them out.

Jeff: When the map arrived after a short wait, I think I was kind of blown away by its size. Granted, I knew the maps were big, but actually having it in front of you is something else. Getting it out of its large packing tube, I could barely unroll all of it in my bedroom to check it out. I had to go downstairs to fully appreciate the entire thing.

George: Chad offers two different sizes, but I’d be hard pressed to recommend anything but the big one. The detail and size of the reproduction print are amazing. As much as I love staring at the map in various books, seeing an enormous version of it hanging on my wall is amazing. When I rolled it out for my wife to see, she remarked at how amazing it is. She immediately picked out a spot in our family room to hang it.

Jeff: This truly is a great find for WDW fans; whether they remember this map from their youth, or if this is their first time seeing it. It’s a great “vintage” thing to have hanging around the house (no pun intended), and will look great on any wall in the house.

You can order your very own Communicore Weekly approved reproduction map by visiting WDWMap.com. And be sure to tell them that Jeff and George sent ya!

Fabulous, isn’t it?  What treasures of Disney World yore do you fantasize about?


By Jeff Heimbuch and George Taylor

The Disney Review is written and edited by Jeff Heimbuch and George Taylor

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About George Taylor

George has been obsessed with Disney theme parks since the first time he saw a photo of the Haunted Mansion in the early 70s. He started writing about Disney in 2007 and has amassed one of the world's largest Disney-related libraries.

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8 Comments

Comments for The Vacation Kingdom of the World Map are now closed.

  1. Just WOW! I have always had a soft spot for this style of pen and marker illustration from the late 60′s early 70′s. I recall there being a similar styled pocket sized one for Expo ’74 in Spokane that I treasured as a child… Busch Gardens in Los Angeles also had this kind of guide map available at the front gate, and I’d relive visits while looking at it. Magic Mountain in Valencia also sold one that was about 3′ square on very heavy linen finish paper that I had as a kid. I wish I had THAT now too! Ahhh… the castoffs of youth become the keepsakes of the adult memory.

    Thanks for the link guys. If I had a place to put one, I’d be buying this right now! (An EPCOT variation in this style would be really cool as a fantasy creation too.)

    Darin

    • Darin,

      Thanks for the comment. I’m a huge map fan and have always wanted a copy of this. Chad does offer a smaller version of it.

      I had a map of King’s Island that I used to drool over as a kid.

  2. I have had a love affair with this map since my first visit to Magic Kingdom in the 70′s. So much of what made WDW work was exemplified in this artwork, including their plans for the future. The Never built expansion hotels around the lagoon, the pirate island, the easy resort/vacation feel and that whimsical artistic direction. I’m snapping one of these up for sure. What a find!

  3. This map looks great, but I can’t help but wonder whether reproducing a piece of Disney’s intellectual property for profit is an entirely legal thing to do. If someone were producing a reproduction of a Disney book, I doubt it would be celebrated in the same way.

    • Steven, thanks for the comment! We wondered about this and after talking to Chad about it, it’s more like the “map” is a digital interpretation of a piece of artwork. We’re not intellectual property lawyers, so we’re no sure of the exact details, but it is an amazing piece.

  4. I HAVE AN ORIGINAL! While my first time at WDW was in 1978, I use to mail order merchandise from them. Long before the Internet, early 1970s in fact you could either call or write WDW and they would send out a hand “Xeroxed” ( remember those) copy if their merchant list( I grew up in the Bay Area ). You would check off what you wanted, the amount of each, and honestly, send them cash! As I was too young to have a checking acct. and credit cards were limited to BankAmericard or MasterCard.
    Anyway, I would order stuff all the time from their limited offerings and one of those items was indeed a map. I still have it, along with many maps of both WDW and Disneyland packed away!
    Wonder what it is worth!!!

    • I just went to the website that is selling this reproduction and it says the originals can sell for $20,000-250,000! You might want to sell your original and get one of these instead! :)

  5. I loved that map in the hotel rooms. Then on one of my vacations to WDW when I was staying at the Contemporary when they were completing a remodeling (I think it was in the mid to late 80′s – it seems to me it was after EPCOT but before Disny-MGM), the map was gone! I asked housekeeping what happened to the maps and they said that they thought some had been salvaged and were available, and that I should call Guest Services, which I immediately did. Guest Services confirmed they were available and that I could have one for $100.00. I immediately said yes. Not only did it cost just $100.00, but Disney shipped it to my house Fed Ex at no additional charge. I am looking at it now as it hangs on my office wall.