Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: The Ride is a dark ride located in the Cloud Cuckoo Land area of Alton Towers theme park, Staffordshire, England. It is based upon the famous Roald Dahl book of the same name, and takes its thematic inspiration from the illustrations of Quentin Blake. The ride is split into two segments, the first being a boat ride along the chocolate river inside Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. Passengers encounter all the characters from the book (going from Augustus Gloop to Veruca Salt) either as simple animatronics or CGI projections. After disembarking the boats the second segment begins with a short pre-show video (involving Mike Teevee). The video is presented as if the viewers are actually trapped within the TV set. The ride continues inside one of two 'Great Glass Elevators' which simulate passengers taking an airborne trip through the rest of the factory. Each elevator is a static room with semi-translucent walls and ceiling on which CGI animations are projected from the outside, and only the floor trembles slightly to give the impression of movement.
HISTORY The ride was originally called Around the World in 80 Days and was opened 1981. This ride took you on a journey through numerous locations including Egypt, Las Vegas and Paris. The ride was re-themed in 1994 as Toyland Tours. The ride was completely transformed into different scenes from a toy factory. During the 2005 season Toyland Tours was closed and work began converting it to its present incarnation. The ride manufacturers Mack were brought in to alter the water way to add a new disembarkation point towards the back of the ride building. This was necessary due to the new ride featuring two simulators as the second half of the attraction.