Opened: 1984 (retrofit of former Enchanted Voyage)
Location: Hanna-Barbera Land (today known as Planet Snoopy), where Boo Blasters on Boo Hill now is
Manufacturer: Arrow Development
Model: Boat Dark Ride
Length: 700 feet
Duration: 5 minutes
Vehicles: Boats with three rows each, seating approximately nine riders per boat
Description: Smurf’s Enchanted Voyage was an animated indoor boat ride through Smurfland and all the Smurf seasons.
History: Taft Broadcasting announced that they had obtained an exclusive ten-year license to use the Smurf characters on May 27, 1983. The characters had been introduced to the United States five years earlier and were the best-selling character merchandise in the world at the time. The characters were introduced to Taft parks that summer as part of a new promotional show called Smurfs Are Coming.
The characters were given a permanent home at Kings Island in 1984 when Smurf’s Enchanted Voyage replaced Enchanted Voyage. The ride was physically the same, using the same layout, boats, and building, but almost all theming was changed between the two incarnations of “dark ride”. One piece of theming that remained between the two was a large frog on a toadstool.
Riders continued to load onto boats from an outside turntable, but a permanent roof was built overtop the platform. It included miniature castle turrets on top.
Smurf’s Enchanted Voyage last operated in 1991. In 1992, the boat ride was completely removed and an Omnimover-style ride named Phantom Theater opened in its place. A children’s roller coaster, Scooby Zoom (today known as Great Pumpkin Coaster) opened where the boat ride’s turntable loading platform was. The new roller coaster reused the turntable’s roof as its station and photo booth. The turrets on top initially remained, but were later removed and sold to local grocery store Jungle Jim’s, where they are now used as thematic pieces on some shelving.
During Winterfest 1991, after Smurf’s Enchanted Voyage had ceased operation, some of the fiberglass Smurf characters were recycled for use on the Les Taxis Antique Cars attraction. The overlay was known as the Smurf’s Christmas Village.
Smurf characters from the ride occasionally appear for sale on eBay and other online sites. One of the Gargamel characters is also currently on display at Green Sales Company auto parts warehouse in Cincinnati.